On their way back from yearly raids, the fleet of the Nordmen suffered heavy damage due to early winter storms. The homeland can’t be reached before the fall of winter and they have been forced to land at this foreign coast to repair the ships and take shelter.
After exploring the surrounding area they found this mysterious brownish-red metal, which people from the southern regions is crazy for. So a quick decision was made. The metal shall get mined; an expedition sent to the south to sell it for a good profit and acquire the urgently needed supplies for a winter encampment. Fortunately the land has riches of pitch and wood, so the damaged ships should be repaired without delay.
Unfortunately though, this region doesn’t seem to be abandoned. Scouts observed strangely armed troops, which looked strong and dangerous. So it would be wise to build up a strong defence and keep on guard.
Meanwhile Druids determined the most favourable day for the departure back home. Make sure, you are well prepared, when this day comes.
Basically it is an invasion map with economic goals. It is an archaic map, since only wooden structures can be build. Good use of terrain and ressources are important to win the scenario.
This is a hard map, that requires alternative defense techniques, since the enemy has more strong troops than you have, so it is kind of unbalanced, but that is intended in gameplay.
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Well, one of the best map recently available and overall one the of the best map for stronghold.
Playability is simply great, always something to do, not borring at all nor repetitive, I played this map fourth, one play after the precedent. This map is intense and not too long, 10 years. It's close to be perfect.
Balance : I'm perhaps hard one balance rating linked to me with playability I think. Some even suggest I like only maps hard to death, so I will be here as constructive as I could. This map, Imo could be play at easy, which could be very easy, at normal which could be easy to hard depend of the player. I feel because of iron requierement, playing at hard (or very hard) is a suicide (+fear factor not available you cant rely to this option).
I suggest if you feel it's too easy, to not use pitch trap, and to not build xbowmen. If you want even more challenge, dont use pitch trap, dismiss your xbowmen and dont build any xbowmen. That could be an alternative to hard and very hard setting.
Creativity : It's obvious this map have a Viking background, that is rare. It's an ecovasion with time out, but the explanation for the time out is simply genial. The map design add to the difficulty ect... You are limited on your population because of story line, (ship crew)... and perhaps restriction on hovels ;) About all side of the map help each other. Perhaps all of this is not new, I dont know, Conjonction of all is new, at least for me, but I didn't play all maps availables.
Map Design :
Simply great look by yourself.
A very convincing story which help the entire game. Viking ships crew which must stop to repair, and oracle who claim the best time to started the travel. It's amazing of simplicity and efficienty to explain other side of the game, such as limit on your population and time out. I could point one or too incoherence in the story, but overall it dont strike the game.
I play stronghold since one year and it's only the second time I restrict myself on options available to be as close as possible to the story : I refused to build xbowmen to be closer to my viking feeling each time I played this map.
I warmly recommand this map, whatever could be your skill you will find a great map.
I thought the design of this map was awesome! It had alot of valleys and areas of mining which you would have never thought possible.
It was very playable and not that hard of a mission, but a good mission and ecovasion at that.
The creativity of this map was not that great but I liked it.
The story line and plot was a great one at that, I applaude you at your imagination!