This is my first attempt at a scenario, so please be honest with any faults or bugs in it. Now for the story.
|Made with version:
Problems 1 out of 5
'The Rat's Stronghold'
After several months of military conquest, you have discovered the Rats' castle, in a valley surrounded by mountains. He has a half-garrison stationed, and with luck have it, he himself is inside!
Use your small siege force and siege equipment to break open his castle and wipe it of troops. If this is not done quickly the reinforcements the Rat has sent will quickly overpower your own force.
Recommended on Normal-Hard difficulty.
The map design is very bare: One tiny castle in the middle of a 400x400 map, around the edge a strip of "mountain" which is actually only some land raised to high plain, made in maybe 1 minute... in addition, there is one big chunk of iron and stone, where obviously the largest brush sizes were used quite the "quick and dirty" way.
Apart from that (and some lonely trees in one corner of the map) the map is completely empty - there's just blank space over by far the most of the map.
So, you really should practice making some kind of landscape. This way, it just looks ugly, unfinished, unnatural and boring, and one immediately gets the impression that this mission was rushed by a careless mapmaker. Now, this may sound a bit harsh, especially as it is your first scenario map, and no one starts as a great mapmaker. But you should really take some more time for filling the map with "life" and landscape - or just pick a smaller map size, if you don't need all that free space. Moreover, lining up some trees on one side of the map edge looks a bit strange. You don't have to cover the whole map in dense forests, but it looks quite unnatural that trees only grow in a square-shaped area on one corner of the map, while the whole rest of the map has no single tree.
Choosing mountains for surrounding the Rat's castle provides you with a lot of possibilities: Make some rivers, use various terrains (rocks, quarry stones, dirt, stones, place some rocks (those in the menu with the signpost), shrubs, trees, etc etc. Moreover, carefully designed mountains can provide "secret" paths to move your troops out of the castle's archers' sight, as well as a decent height advantage for placing your ranging troops or siege engines. Moreover, adding some wildlife (wolves, deer, bears) can give your map a more vivid atmosphere. One of the most basic "rules" for mapmaking: Avoid using the largest brush size and producing huge square shapes. This makes it all look rough and unnatural. For a great set of tips and tricks, please take a look at the Mapmaking 101 section: http://stronghold.heavengames.com/maps/index_html
A comment on the story: Rat himself is supposed to be inside that castle... so how can se SEND reinforcements to that castle? I mean, he can send out some messengers and ask for reinforcements, but he can't send reinforcements. Someone else has to send the reinforcements to the castle where the Rat is.