Posted on 10/02/08 @ 08:40 PM (updated 11/30/08
Did you ever wonder what the Halloween holiday (Oct 31) celebrates? In many english-speaking countries, Halloween is associated with ghosts, goblins, and witches. What most people don’t know is that this holiday was started in Romania after the not-so-famous castle called Hollow Vein was liberated at the end of 1805. Curious? Read on … and play this historic enactment of the castle liberation.
|Made with version:
If you like
a) big battles,
b) LOTS of strategy and tactics,
c) but don’t care much for running an intricate economy, this game is for you!
If you dislike following instructions and reading a loooong background story or if you are looking for a short, quick fighting game, please forget about this game. Download something simpler to play.
PLEASE: MAKE SURE TO READ THE DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE OPENING OR PLAYING THIS GAME!
July 24, 1805: Life is not so bad after all. Captain Haddock assigned me to live in this beautiful place to keep an eye on two Romanian cousins that appear to live peacefully. However, there are stories and rumors about something not being right in their castle. Unbelievable stories of daemons, ghosts, and trolls. My task is to figure out what is going on. The Captain was very generous supporting this mission with more money than I have ever seen before. He suggested me to settle down in this cozy little trading post called Standley Inn near the cousins’ castle. This will be a really relaxing mission compared to the fierce desert fighting out east.
Aug 5, 1805: We have tried to talk to local people in nearby villages about the rumors of daemons and ghosts. No one is willing to discuss the matter. Everyone avoids it as a fox with rabies. As soon as the matter is brought up, their eyes darken and they quickly turn away to mind their own business. Very frustrating.
Aug 24, 1805: We have had repeated setbacks. Our spies are unable to gain access to the heavily fortified castle. We have tried many different approaches, but without success. The gate closest to us is used only for the castle workers and no one else is allowed to enter. No exceptions. We can easily enter the front gate a two days’ trip west of here. The front gate is open to all traders. It gives easy access to the town square where all the traders run their businesses. However, we are not allowed to enter the core of the castle. Near the marketplace, we have seen two alleys supposedly leading to the inner sections of the castle, but very few selected civilians are allowed to enter. Numerous archer units surround the whole town square, so any hostilities would be quickly suppressed with lots of bloodshed.
Sept 2, 1805: We have seen the first sign of suspicion. The animal traders of the castle bring more animals into the castle than they bring out. A seemingly small detail. It would not be very strange if ordinary sheep and cows were being traded, since the people of the castle simply need some food too. However, the animals that disappear are rare and very expensive antelopes and camels that no one would ever dream of eating. How can these animals just vanish, disappear into thin air?
Sept 16, 1805: We tried to access the castle via the gate in the northwest. It was quite a challenge just getting to it. As we didn’t want to be seen by guards at the front gate, we traveled by the cover of the forest west of here. We have heard the rumor of wolfs and dangerous animals, so we came prepared. Still, they almost overwhelmed us. There are so many dangers in this forest that I prefer not to go back. Ever. We stayed just on the edge of the woods and I dare not imagine what can be found deeper among these dark trees and bushes. Even some of the vegetation is dangerous with many sharp poisonous thorns. We lost two horses on our trip. We stayed over night in some old ruins that gave us some protection. According to the nameplate on the door, it once belonged to a fellow called Hitchcock. We were lucky to find some shelter. Even apparently peaceful sparrows and crows look frightening in this area and you can almost feel as if the birds are looking at you as prey. At nighttime, very elusive creatures come out of the woods. They are as dark as the night itself and you can only see their red glowing eyes. No matter how many arrows and rocks we sent towards them at night, we didn’t find any traces of dead bodies in the morning. We found quite a few stains of blood, but no other evidence of wounding them seriously. I don’t know what kind of claws these creatures have. They do not leave scratches as ordinary cats and dogs do. It is always a single scratch instead of three or four as from cats and dogs. And the scratch is more like a cut, almost as if they had a razorblade on their paws.
The rumors of ghosts and goblins got a slight twist when we briefly stopped at the Hollow Vein Inn that’s on the road to the main gate of the castle. Quite a few farmers were upset and at the same time scared. They told us that the rabbits were very aggressive this year and little bunnies had actually attacked a few of them. It was hard to believe, but they all seemed honest, so it was not some drunkard’s lies.
When arriving at the gate, we were simply turned back. Similar to the southeastern gate, this entrance is only for castle workers. We saw a few mining and quarry operations in this area. We also saw a brief glimpse of the pitch rigs that extract the famous oil produced here. It is said that this oil burns hotter and more reliably than any other oil found within this province. If we need to enter this castle by force, we should seriously consider cutting off their oil supply first.
The most important discovery we did was the bridge that connects the northwestern gate to the main castle complex. Some of our spies got curious when they saw the bridge and decided to explore it in greater detail. When they returned, they had interesting news to share. After climbing the bridge, they saw a seemingly inhospitable and rocky area on the eastern side. They were surprised to find that they could actually reach the river Kwai on the other side. However, thick brush similar to that in the dangerous forest made traveling very hazardous. A still unexplored corner of this rocky area appeared to contain some kind of underground bunker with unknown purpose. As our spies tried to access the complex, patrolling units interrupted them and they had to leave the area before being discovered. They assessed the risk too high for further exploration. Can this area possibly be connected with the rumors we have heard?
Oct 8, 1805: We are running out of options. Tomorrow I’ll leave for the last unexplored gate myself up in the northeast. My goal is to enter the castle and gather as much information as I can. Maybe I can even meet the elusive cousins. After the last horror trip through the dark forest in the west, no one volunteered for my suggestion to go up north and try to get to the northeastern gate. They just shook their heads as if I am crazy when I suggested going near the volcano. But this is the only option to get to this gate. I don’t want to be seen by the farmers at the eastern oasis, so I have to follow the eastern canyon up north, which brings me uncomfortably close to the volcano. My reasoning is that the last major eruption was 13 years ago, so it should be reasonably safe. No one listened to my arguments. They just kept pointing out that the half-asleep volcano still send out some smoke and every now and then a red-hot glowing piece of molten rock. Dear diary, wish me good luck.
You borrowed a gray robe from Friar Tuck, packed your food supply and traveled north from your camp. As you approached the volcano, you could see steam from hot springs and feel the smell of sulphur. When you found the old road passing by the ruins of the small village of Herculaneum, you saw some sputtering near the center of the volcano. The water in the nearby lake Loch Nis was steaming hot at the shore where some molten lava was still slowly sliding into the lake. You hurried westward towards the castle to get away from the danger zone.
As you approached the castle, you were surprised to see the back gate still heavily guarded. The guards looked very suspiciously at you already from a distance, so you raised your hand and made your presence known from a distance:
- “Good afternoon, may the spirits be with you on this beautiful day. I’m a humble monk and I come in peace to discuss some matters with abbot Costello”.
You could feel the nervousness of the archers in the nearby towers that had their arrows on their bows already. One small mistake, and you would be forever gone. As you slowly approached the gate, the guards took a closer look at you and seemed to relax a little and they gave a sign to all the archers that there was no danger.
-“My name is Bond, Jimmy Bond. I’m here to see the abbot”.
-“No, Jimmy Bond. James is my brother. I wish to meet father Costello.”
-“We will organize for you to meet with him”, said one of the guards.
You headed for the gate.
- “Where do you think you are going?”, said the guard with a suspicious glance.
- “To the abbot, Sir”.
- “No one enters through this gate without an escort. I’ll bring you to him once my replacement guard arrives”.
This was a setback to your plan, but there was nothing you could do except waiting. You took out your copy of the Holy Scripts and pretended to study, just to avoid any further talk with the suspicious guards.
After waiting for more than an hour, four more guards arrived.
- “Now is the time to see the Abbot”, said the guard that you spoke with previously.
As you entered the gate you immediately saw the big cathedral. It was kept in very good condition and the gardens were astonishing masterpieces of beauty with amazing fountains. However, the big cathedral was still dwarfed by the massive and impressive defense towers. You looked for the stairways to these towers, but couldn’t see any. If you needed to invade this castle some day, access to the towers in this part of the castle would be a troublesome issue. While looking around, you saw a strange new design technique of the wall near the gate. It immediately dawned on you that some of the bowmen near the gate had excellent protection of a high wall as they stood on a low wall behind it. It would be very hard to take out these bowmen, unless you had access to the stairs inside the gate.
You were led to the abbot’s study and tried your best to use your religious ceremonial skills that you had practiced. You covered up a few embarrassing moments of mistake by explaining that the Order you came from on the other side of the mountains had different procedures. After some small talk, the discussion drifted towards the powers of nature: wind, floods, earthquakes, and of course the volcano. You mentioned that it appeared to be more active lately and the abbot agreed.
-“I have been contacted by the Higher Spirits telling me that there is an urgent need for caution in this area”, you said.
-“Oh, is that so?”, the abbot said.
-“Yes, I suggest that this part of the castle be evacuated.”
-“We have our own spiritual connections here”, he chuckled as he shook his head.
-“Maybe I should discuss this with …”, you started, but then you were interrupted by a faint sound that appeared to be a howling wolf.
-“Was that a wolf?” you asked.
-“A wolf? In the middle of the day? Oh, I don’t think there are any wolfs out there now”.
-“Not out there, it was from inside. Almost as if from below”.
-“Maybe you are connected with the Lower Spirits instead of the Higher?”, the abbot insinuated and frowned suspiciously. “This is not good for you. Witches and black magicians are burnt to death for a lot less than this incident. But as a brother, I will not mention this little ‘incident’ to anyone”.
You could swear you had heard a wolf, but as the abbot said, this was impossible. Or maybe it wasn’t? You quickly dropped the topic and continued:
-“Eeh, yes… let’s get back to the volcano. Let me see Dr. A. Cula about this issue”, you tried in an attempt to meet one of the two cousins ruling the castle.
-“Dr… A… Cula … sees … no one”, the abbot said slowly in a very harsh, cold voice and a deep frown as he stared deeply into your eyes.
You immediately backed off from the topic. After some more small talk with a less-than-friendly abbot, you concluded that this mission was going nowhere and asked to leave. Abbot Costello sent for a guard who quickly arrived to lead you out. As you walked towards the gate with the guard, you tried one last time:
-“I have traveled for four days and three nights to come here. Could you please bring me to Dr. A. Cula? I have an important message to the cousins”.
-“Dr… A… Cula … sees … no one”, said the guard slowly in a very harsh, cold voice and a deep frown as he stared seriously into your eyes.
Mission incomplete. You returned home.
Oct 12, 1805: I was successful in entering the castle, but I didn’t accomplish much once inside. The back gate is as heavily guarded as the front. The rumors of the volcano are greatly exaggerated, but it is still a danger. A major military operation with many troops in this area would be hampered by the constant threat of the volcano. I never saw any stairways to the massive defense towers. If a forced entry is ever needed, we really need to find the stairways before going in. We can probably take down one or two towers by either battering rams or siege towers, but there are a total of four large towers near the gate. We need to get inside and gather more information about the castle construction. We have accomplished nothing in the past two months after we discovered the animal trading discrepancy. We are no closer to knowing this mystery now then two months ago, and people still refuse to discuss any related subjects. When I mentioned the name of one of the cousins, people immediately became hostile. What is happening in this place?
Oct 29, 1805: One of the biggest trading days of the year is soon coming up. The back gate approach backfired, so the front gate appears to be the only solution of getting inside. With a very busy market, maybe I have a chance to “accidentally” slip into one of the alleys leading away from the market place into the center of the castle. Many people at the town square recognize me, so I’ll have to “get dressed”. I have decided to use the “female seduction method” to gain access to the castle and the ruling cousins. Again, dear diary, wish me good luck. I hope we will meet again soon.
You dressed up in Marian’s pink skirt and added some mosquito netting to one of her big hats to cover your face. You asked the cooking team to get the two biggest apples from the granary and placed them in appropriate places under your very uncomfortable clothing. How embarrassing if someone at the marketplace recognized you!
Entering the town square through the front gate was a lot easier than the back gate. After some safety checks at the front gate, you strolled around freely among the market stands and looked at all the animals. You pretended to walk around lazily, but your eyes and ears constantly gathered information. After some time, you approached a guard near the entrance of one of the alleys. After some presentations and small talk you focused on the other guard instead. He presented himself as Mr. Doyle and seemed more interested in your female attributes. During a short walk to one of the nearby trading stands, you briefly mentioned the desire to meet one of the ruling cousins:
-“An important and capable man like you should be able to set up a meeting with Mr. Frank N. Stein?”
-“Mr… Frank … N… Stein … sees … no one”, the guard said slowly in a harsh, cold voice and a deep frown as he stared deeply into your eyes.
You briefly touched his elbow and said:
-“You and me should really get together some day and what is better than a small gift to the castle owners to get you some vacation? Maybe we can spend some nice time together at the beach over some wine and a good cheese… my brother has a few big white Arabian horses that I think Mr. Frank N. Stein would be very interested in. You don’t want to deny Mr. Stein this opportunity, do you? And you and me can get some quality time together. What do you think, Arthur?”
-“Eeh… uhmm… oohh.. I… I would think this is a great idea. I’ll see what I can do. Let me go RIGHT now and …eeh … you just wait here, alright? Don’t go anywhere, I’ll be right back”.
You could see the guard’s eyes were on fire and wondered how you would get out of this situation later. However, if you can handle a meeting with one of the cousins, you sure could handle a simple guard. Before he hurried away, you told him:
-“Don’t forget: big white Arabian horses. This is a kind that Mr. Stein has never seen before”.
Half an hour later, you wondered if the poor guard had been executed or put in chains. But then you saw him hurry over the town square towards you. You were almost afraid he would trip over his own feet and poke himself in the eye with his sharp pike.
-“It works! We can do it!”, he almost shouted.
It was very embarrassing in front of everyone being dressed in a pink skirt and all. You quickly tried to calm him down to talk instead of screaming the news to half the world.
Finally, you were going to see one of the cousins and almost as importantly, study the castle construction from the inside to find its weak spots.
The guard led you past a narrow walkway (on the southeast side of the town square on the map) and finally you saw one of the stairs leading to the top of the wall and the towers. There were military troops everywhere. To your surprise and great disappointment, you also saw another wall on your left with a gate. This castle appeared to have three levels of wall defenses, of which the middle one you couldn’t see from the outside. This was bad news, but you silently congratulated yourself for finding this out. The guard led you through the inner gate and you saw a troop training ground on your left. You passed several busy weapons shops and armories and at the end of the alley, there was a long stairway leading down to your surprise. You could feel the distinct smell of ale production, but you had a hard time seeing anything in the dark pit below you. You knew that the main keep was on a hill, so why would you need to go down?
-“Is this the only way?” you asked. “Maybe we can take another path?” pretending to be a little nervous.
-“No, there is no other way, Miss. This is the path to reach the keep area. Anything wrong?”.
-“Eeh… I’m just not liking darkness… daemons abound everywhere …”, you said in the hope of the guard showing you a different way.
-“It will be fine, we have some light down there. Here, just hold my hand and everything will be fine”, the guard offered enthusiastically.
-“Eeh? … uhmm… no thanks, I’ll … I’ll be just fine”.
To keep track of your location, you saw a glimpse of the cathedral behind a big square tower before you went down the stairs and your eyes adjusted slowly to the darkness. Torches provided some light. You had just entered the brewery section of the castle. Then you suddenly saw a drawbridge to your great surprise.
-“Why is there a bridge so deep underground?”.
-“Oh, this old thing. It was planned long time ago to give extra security. But then the mechanisms rusted in this damp place, so it actually doesn’t work anymore”.
You praise your luck with the more-than-helpful guard that kept telling you very good information. You crossed the bridge and entered an even darker hallway. This was very bad news. These castle designers knew of tricks no one had ever seen before. Now you have to pass through deep, dark catacombs to gain access to the main keep. Heavily armed troops stood on guard and you could feel the smell of hot oil being prepared to be poured onto anyone trying to enter without permission. On your right, you saw the stairs to one of the big square towers. Very clever to have the tower access in such an inaccessible place. Again, you thought of how hard it would be to get to these tower units. You proceeded and heard noises of dogs. As you passed them, you saw that these were no ordinary dogs, these were very hungry and wild dogs.
-“Wow! These are scary-looking animals.”
-“Aah, yes… meet Huffi and Muffi.”
-“Who is Huffi and who is Muffi? And who are the other three dogs?”
-“Well, you see… we have a very hard time to see the difference between them so we just call them Huffi and Muffi. The females are Huffi and the males are Muffi.”
-“Where did you find these beasts?”, you asked.
-“Some traders bring them occasionally. Most of them come from far away, but there are actually a few living not far from here. Have you heard about ‘the beasts of Black Forest’?”
-“Yes of course, the deep forest southwest of here (see map). So the stories are actually true?”.
-“Yes, very much so. It is not without good reason that people are urged to stay away from the area. Have you heard about Hitchcock’s Ruins located just on the outskirts of the forest? We tried to operate a quarry there, but we couldn’t provide safety for our workers, so we had to abandon it. We know people have disappeared in that forest. A few lucky manage to survive, but come back with their hair all white and are unable to speak coherently. I have heard of even stranger dark creatures in that area too, but those we have not yet seen. Hitchcock claimed to have seen a few of them flying between the treetops. He called them strigois and claimed that these had migrated in from a region far northwest of here called Transylvania. Hitchcock was a jolly good fellow. Once you got him drunk, you could sometimes here him telling stories about when he was lost in the Black Forest and he met a headless horseman who was dancing with his own shadow. Everyone was laughing at him, but he claimed dead seriously it was true. Of course, no one else ever saw this headless horseman. Hitchcock promised you would see him if you dare to go to the hills deep inside the Black Forest. No one ever took him up on this offer though. Sometimes men are willing to prove they are men, but sometimes it is just better to stay alive … There is another strange story about Hitchcock. He mysteriously disappeared after claiming that the appearance of the strigois coincided with the rulers of this castle arriving here. We wouldn’t have been surprised if he disappeared in the Black Forest, but the strangest thing is that he was last seen near the cathedral caring for his mother’s grave”.
Interesting news indeed, you thought. You already knew that animals somehow disappeared, but now also people start disappearing?
Suddenly, very faintly you hear a roaring camel screaming for his life before it went silent.
-“What was that noise?”, you asked.
-“Camel?? There’s no camel down here, Miss. It must have been one of our little puppies over here”.
Another stairway led up and left before you could see daylight again. As you passed yet another gate, you heard a horse in panic.
-“Poor horse, what is happening here?”
-“Well, I guess they are riding him in the market place, it’s just over that wall on the other side of the keep. It happens every now and then. Wild horses tend to be sensitive when you ride them for the first time”.
-“No, this noise came from behind us. From the catacombs”.
-“Horses in the catacombs?? No, Miss, there are no horses down there. Maybe one of these daemons you mentioned?” he tried to joke.
You continued walking towards the front of the keep. You saw a huge amount of goods. Stockpile after stockpile were filled up, but there were even more space free for the numerous workers to fill up. Very impressive. Now you could see where all the material to construct and maintain this enormous castle could be collected. At the front of the keep, the guard led you to a huge man dressed in a simple brown robe. He must have been at least four armlengths and a foot tall.
-“This is the chief servant of the Keep. He will bring you to see Mr. Frank N. Stein”.
You felt a little uncomfortable loosing your good source of information and said:
-“Couldn’t you bring me there instead? It seems we are getting along quite well together …”.
-“Ooh, I wish so much I could, but Mr. Frank N. Stein is not someone I feel comfortable meeting right now. I’d better get back to my guard duty”.
The tall man took you inside, where you were surprised to see a huge collection of art. There were paintings and statues everywhere. You found it odd that everything depicted strange-looking animals. They must be from foreign countries you thought. You were walking through endless corridors with pictures of bizarre creatures. Every now and then you felt that someone was watching you and you thought you saw a shadow quickly disappearing. Suddenly you saw a stone statue of a black six-legged centaur. It especially caught your attention because there was an enlargement of its hoof. It had a single claw on it at the front. A sign announced the creatures name as Pazuzu. You stopped for a moment, but continued when the tall man noticed your hesitation. He led you into a dining hall and sat down at the end of the table. Strange for a servant you thought.
-“Have a seat”, he said. “So you have little white Arabian horses?” he asked.
-“Eeh?… yes. No… I mean no. They are actually big white Arabian horses, Mr …?”.
-“Moreau, my name is Moreau”.
-“I’m here to see Mr. Frank N. Stein”, you said fearing the usual response of a slow, harsh, cold voice telling you that you couldn’t see him.
Instead, Moreau hesitated and looked at you for a long time. He slowly opened a drawer and took out an animal that looked like a huge black lizard with bright orange stripes across it. To your surprise, it was alive. Moreau stroke his back gently and then snapped his fingers. Within seconds, a female dwarf dressed in blue appeared from a hidden door. She stood at the side of Moreau as he said:
-“Guffi is hungry, bring some food”.
The dwarf ran away, but was back within seconds with a small dark wooden box. You had never seen anyone move so fast. This is getting very, very strange, you thought. Here I am dressed in a pink skirt in the most well defended castle you had ever seen. With catacombs where you heard screaming animal noises and a marvelous Keep containing a huge collection of art that can best be described as beasts and trolls. On top of this, a huge giant servant that acts as he owns the place and has a tiny miniature lightning-fast servant and a humongous lizard as a pet. Is this a dream?
Moreau introduced you to his servant:
-“Please meet Regan MacNeil. She’s the newest addition to our staff and will be in training for the next few weeks.”
The dwarf briefly glanced at you and you felt a freezing chill down your spine. The pupils of her eyes were not round; they were the same shape as a cat’s pupils. Moreau gently corrected the dwarf and asked her to “bring the white box instead”. Five seconds later, she was back with another box, now of birch wood. Soon, the huge lizard Guffi was snapping food out of Moreau’s hand with his long purple tongue. It seemed to entertain Moreau, who had a childish look on his face. “Food” in this case was little white mice from the box that the dwarf had brought. The mice were alive. But not for very long. If the color of the box indicated what type of “food” was inside, you didn’t want to know what the other box contained.
-“So you have big white Arabian horses?” Moreau suddenly said, turned to you and licked his lips.
For every second that passed, things were getting stranger and stranger.
-“Yes, big white Arabian horses”, you said half annoyed. “Now, can I see Mr. Frank N. Stein, please”.
Another silent minute past with a few peeps from dying mice, and then Moreau stood up and said:
You walked along more corridors and a few staircases down into the basement. Every so often you saw a quick glimpse of a silent dwarf servant dressed in blue. Moreau effortlessly raised a very heavy iron bar that blocked a thick solid wooden door and you entered a dimly lit room.
-“Honorable Mr. Stein, you have a visitor”, Moreau said and bowed towards a shady figure at a table. “I shall leave now”, Moreau said to you. He closed the door and to your surprise you could hear the iron bar being put back in place.
-“Vizitur? Huw nize, I nu zee many vizitur lately. Cume furward, … pleaze have zeat”.
You had a hard time to understand his heavy accent.
-“It is an honor for me to finally meet you, Mr. Stein. You have such a big and impressive castle, why do you spend your time down here?” you said as you sat down at the small rustic wooden table. There was half a bottle of wine, a piece of dark bread, and a candle on the table. There was also something else, but you never had a chance to see what it was before Mr. Stein quickly removed it from the table and put it in his pocket.
-“Uuh, … zunzhine hurt me eyez. I prefer here, … away frum … people.”
You gasped as you saw his big asymmetric head and his powerful arms, all covered in thick hair. Fur would be a better word, but it didn’t fit with the fact that he was talking.
-“But if you are here, how can you run this big castle? You are ruling this castle together with your cousin, aren’t you?”.
-“Ah, yez, … couzin Cula iz great fun. Yez, uf courze we run thiz palaze. It iz great cumplicated caztle tu rule. Lucky, we get very many gud advize frum our Father.
-“Our father?? You and your cousin Dr.A. Cula has the same father?”.
-“Yez, uf courze. There iz unly une Father. Huw could there be twu fatherz?”.
-“But then Dr. A. Cula is your brother, not your cousin”.
-“My couzin is my bruther??” He scratched his head. “I du nut underzand… I get cunfuzed”.
The lack of any sign of human intelligence frightened you.
-“But I have bruther alzo…” he said as his face lightened up.
-“Oh, you do? Where is he?”
-“He livez duwnstairz. Deep duwnstairz… but nu une likez bruther… he eatz fizh. He likez ztinky, zlimy fizh. I nu like ztinky, zlimy fizh. We call him Gullum”.
-“So all your family lives here?”
-“Yez, we have big family here. Many uf uz live here.”
-“How big is your family?”
-“Big. Very big. I dun’t knuw … but we are many. Maybe azk our Father when he cumez back?”.
-“Who is your father?”
-“Hahaha, you are funny pink lady”, he laughed. “You arrived with Father”.
-“Servant Moreau is your father?”
-“Zervant ur Father ur whatever. He created uz and we zhall be very thankful fur thiz. Hunur your Father and he will hunur you”.
-“It is time for me to go”, you said quickly.
-“Az you pleaze, I will call fur Father. Maybe you cume back tunight when couzin Cula wake up? We alwayz play fun at night when zunzhine iz gune”.
Everything else happened very quickly. You promised to return with three big white Arabian horses and Moreau brought you to the front of the keep where the guard met you. The trip back to the trading post was in a cloudy haze in your mind as you traveled in a state of shock. Something very, very strange is happening in this castle and you have to put an end to it before the worst would happen.
Go kill the maniac Moreau! Watch out for the volcano eruptions in the northeast and the dangers in the forest in the southwest if you move troops into these areas. Have fun trying to get the ‘Victory’ message after Moreau falls!
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|Author||Comments & Reviews ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )|
Thats a whopper of a story u got there, amazing really good job
wow that's a long story, too long for me atleast, but nice looking map there mate.
I thought Halloween came from all saints day or something...
I really can't imagine how you created this "Baby" :D.
It is apsolutely,totally,amazingly A.W.E.S.O.M.E!
Hope you create some more of these,even better!
Dear fellow knights and spearmen,
Thanks for all the positive comments so far! Please, don't give me any more, I might just feel obligued to create another map...
As for those of you that think the story is too long: it is not necessary to read it to enjoy the game (but it helps). Just make sure you follow the instructions.
Is there anyone out there who have succeeded this mission on 'Very hard' (30000 Gold) or 'For experts only' (20000 Gold)?
If these are too hard for everyone, I consider one tiny change: Allow wood cutters huts. I think this should help out a little.
[Edited on 10/10/08 @ 06:00 PM]
I think you *should* create another map :-)
And on the subject of the long story: I think what was meant was that it is a bit long to put the whole thing on the description page. What designers often do is put a taster of the story, along with any useful instructions on the description page here. They then include the full story as a text file or RTF file in the zip. The taster of the story on the description page can end with "...The full story can be found in the zip file".
I'm on the way with 20k starting gold. Err, I was, but made a mistake. The marksmen had just cleared a section of the wall when some savage pikemen (incidently set on aggressive)wrecked the stairs behind them. Doomed, no way out unless with heavy losses. Re-start, at least with some experience how to act better.
Edit: Now I've WON the mission with 20k! Had to decide on which troop types I'd wish to concentrate. Nevertheless different units brought in their special skills and values to let the army make progress. Eventually one time a SIEGE TOWER was ultima ratio. Absolutely great map. Good idea, qtlilkeg, to recommend these limits of starting gold.
Will be difficult to write a review of the map and not reveal anything of certain unique surprises! Maybe Mr. Hitchcock helps me encoding the secrets?
[Edited on 10/16/08 @ 06:15 PM]
Hello desperate players of Moreau,
I just updated this game with a few small changes. The changes mainly reduces the ability to earn money from running a good economy. If you play the old game very slowly, you can actually make quite a bit of money over the years. The new game will limit this. For the same reason, I also set a time limit (very relaxed at 100 years).
I also added a new challenging play skill level: A starting gold of only 5000. Now, peter2008 will have something more to munch on! I saw his solution and decided that this game is still too easy for the "professional" players.
Before anything else, I want to say one thing: For any game designer on this website, please look at this game. Study its details and care of the designer. Many of you have lot to learn from a very nice game design like this one.
This game is playing smooth from start to end. I see no hickups and no bugs. On top of this, game is very entertaining and challenging require many clever thoughts and decision making, which is high on my list of evaluating the goodness of any game. There are no boring section of game and the repetitiveness of 'defending game' is easily avoided by the attack mission. I think a very good choice of game designer was to give a fixed starting gold instead of a fixed starting troops. Now the player can choose which troops to buy. This gives a tremendos replay value for this game.
The game maker give many levels of difficulty in changing levels of start gold. I think this is great idea, so many players can play same game without being too easy or too hard. Very interesting concept. I'm still working on the 5000 level, but I think I have no hope for this challenge! For game designer: Do you think this is possible?
The overall look of the map with a difficult castle to attack that have three levels of defence. On top of this, WOW, so many interesting small details in this game that is new to me:
Flexibility buying any troops instead of fixed starting troops. Flexibility in choosing difficulty level by setting starting gold yourself. Then there is also useful 'eyecandy' such as a live volcano, killer rabbits, Hitchcock's scary birds. So many fun and surprising moments of game. Also the 'earcandy' I enjoy a lot! (especially the ending to get Victory)
Map Design: 5
A incredible amount detail in layout and natural feature. Some of natural feature can be used when attacking castle, such as hiding behind hills for ambush enemy or using height advantage when throwing rocks at enemy walls. The whole village is working nicely and all atmosphere feels natural. One minor detail: the oxen seems exceptional skillful in climbing stairs ;)
I particular like the four different entrances of enemy castle, which gives a few options to choose. Last but not least: a very nice castle design that is not designed for its looks but to enhance the enemy defence capability. Not just a huge jumble of walls and towers, but actually a castle where defencability is the main property when designing.
With such a story (or should I say book?), there is no need to choose any other 'grade'! Nicely done to put so many detail in story and 'force' me to read it to solve the last peace of puzzle.
To all who hesitates: download and play this game! And don't make shortcut, make very sure to follow all game instruction to every detail. It is little headache, but very much worth it.
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