Lord Azron's castle is a large map with a quite intricate castle to storm. I played this through on both attacking and defending, as I was unsure from the instructions how this was meant to be approached.
The map plays well enough, and I initially tried to defend the castle, moving some troops around to better defend the gatehouses and walls. The major problem with this map is that it is too easy, and the ease of victory detracted from the overall enjoyment. The author highlighted that this is best played on normal setting. I tried this and very hard to try to add some spice to the proceedings. Whilst not a bad map, it lacks the finesse and the addictive quality. I'd suggest more playtesting and tweaking before submission to the site.
A shame, as this could be a really good and technical siege. As a defender on normal setting, losses were 19%, although granted the troops did manage to break through the outer baileys and face the keep for the final onslaught. Playing as a defender on very hard improved things somewhat, but losses here were still a fairly moderate 30%. As an attacker, the map plays better, and on hard or very hard setting you are pushed to overcome some of the aerial assaults from the archers and crossbowmen. The map cries out for more units to play around with, certainly more attacking numbers are needed.
Some potential here. The playability and balance issues drag the score down, yet there were some nice eyecandy touches and the castle looks fairly 'lived in'. Good effort though, but needs content in most areas.
Map Design: 4/5
Some good work here. As above, there are spots of eye candy around that look very good indeed. The castle is fairly ornate and looks imposing sitting on top of the cliff face. The terrain is modelled fairly well too. It's a decent attempt and the efforts are noted. My only gripe is that there are large areas of landscape that aren't utilised by the units, which whilst show signs of terrain modelling look a little bland. A 4 score... just.
I have to be honest and say that 2 is extremely generous, given that there is no story, no instructions and a brief note to say that this is the author's map. This is a real shame, and I can't stress enough how a good story can add so much to the playing experience.
There are some quite serious problems with the map, unfortunately. Whilst is plays okay, and there's nothing really wrong with what Lord Azron has done, it lacks substance in the story, needs to be more challenging and ultimately is rather 'play-and-forget'. A great shame, as it could so easily be a good map all-round, with only a little more work.