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Mapmaking 101 - Using Events

by Ztolk*

If you have ever tried to make an Invasion or Economic map in Stronghold or Crusader, you have realized that you must have scripted events to make your scenario enjoyable. The purpose of this article is to educate new scenario designers in the use of these events.

The events work in a Cause-Effect format, the causes being called Conditions, and the effects being called Events. That means there are two parts to every event, the condition that makes it happen, and the event that the condition creates.

To set an event, press “Add Event”, then choose your condition and event. First click the button that says “Auto Stop” which will bring up a list of all the conditions. Choose yours by clicking the one you want, and right click the buttons to deselect. If you have more than one selected, choose “All of these” at the top if you want all the conditions to be met before the event occurs, or “Any of these” if you only want one to cause the event. Do the same for choosing an event.

The first thing a map needs is a Win Condition and a Loss Condition, which, obviously, allows the player to win or lose the game, and prevents them from playing forever. The win condition can be whatever you want, but it will generally set the feel of the entire scenario, so choose it carefully. The most common is “No Enemy or Invasions Left”, which means that once you’ve killed everybody, you win. Another common victory condition is “Resource Stockpiled” which lets you win when you have a certain amount of a given resource. Make sure autostop is deselected, or the game will finish as soon as it starts. For your loss condition, choose the way the player loses the scenario. Common ways are “Lord Killed”, or “Auto stop”, meaning the player only has a certain amount of time to win.

In between the win and loss events, you can put in all the events to make your scenario more interesting. For instance, if the player has to get a certain amount of wheat to win, you can set a wheat plague, which will make it harder to win. The easiest way to set an event is just to specify when it occurs, using the Auto Stop condition.

Be aware that there are more events than the ones given. There is an event called “Cede Castle” that gives the enemy castle to you when the condition is fulfilled. To access this, copy Mission 12 in Stronghold, or Mission 1a in Crusader, and open them in the editor. There you will find the event in the Event List. Just wipe the map blank a restart with the event already made if you want to use it.

That was a basic run-through of event scripting in Stronghold. Learning how to use the many events together to create better and better maps is up to you. To learn about more advanced ways to script maps, I suggest you read this course about scripting (very long) by ultima spock. [Ed: ultima spock also created a Word file in which he collated the course available for download here.]

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