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Downloads Home » Stronghold: Economic Scenarios » Castles of Wood-Donatien Abbey

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Castles of Wood-Donatien Abbey

Author File Description
File Details
Map Size: 400x400 (Large)
Difficulty: Normal
In July 1212 Etienne, son of a French lord, ran away from home to join in the Children's Crusade. When the waters of the Mediterranean didn't miraculously part for the crusaders, Etienne and the other three members of his personal retinue were tricked into boarding ships that were supposed to be bound for the Holy Land. Two of the ships, along with two of his friends, were lost at sea.

The other ships, meanwhile, were taken to the Algerian coast and the crusaders sold into slavery. Etienne and Tabor, the last remaining member of his group, were taken to Egypt as slaves. Finally, nearly ten years later, they escaped. Etienne and Tabor made their way back to France, but before taking the last leg of their journey home, they sought solace with the monks of the Donatien Abbey in the Davet Hills.

September 1222... In the simple lifestyle of the brothers Etienne and Tabor seek the healing of their tortured minds, that they may at last return home whole. But first, they have a few things to do...

Full story is in the text file that comes with the game!

AuthorComments & Reviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
Map Design4.0

Well, Donatien Abbey is again one of Kester’s classic and typical ecomaps, that will promise you lots of fun. With regard to the recently published results of the (Heavengames) competition “Castles of Wood – Men of Leather”, this map obviously deserves a proper review.


Playability is great! You have to clear the forests that surround your keep to gain additional land to stabilize your food supply. Kester offers you plenty of possibilities (or solutions) to handle this scenario. There are different ways to fulfil the demanded objectives, depending on your strategy. Your keep is located on an irregularly formed plateau that you have to enclose as fast as you can (protection against the roaming wolves). The sword production is another objective of the victory conditions and it seems to be the most difficult part of this mission, because those iron resources are in enemy’s hands and far away from your keep. Don’t worry, there’s one tricky way to get these important deposits back (…I won’t give any secrets away).


Unfortunately, (in my opinion) balance is the weaker part of a generally strong map. I just needed one attempt to achieve all goals, played on “normal”- 49 months earlier, played on “hard”- 20 months left. I suggest adding more dangerous wolf attacks or other different boring events like plagues or thieves/bandits for higher challenges.

Creativity: 5

I think, concerning the recently finished competition, the author has almost perfectly fulfilled the requested tasks to illustrate a map that shows us a simpler medieval life, based on wood and leather. It’s the character of simplicity represented by all the villagers going to work inside and around their settlements.

Map Design:4

I loved this exceptional map design, especially the two remarkable highlights as the “intelligent” irrigation system and the neat-looking abbey with a cross-formed wooden architecture inside of the monastery. The quite naturalistic landscape is characterized by a hilly surface with lower and higher grounds that you can use as farmland. However, partially some smoothing out is necessary, because particularly the rocky areas are looking a little bit too rough. Besides, various hostile workshops, for example the iron mines are unoccupied. I personally try to avoid such optical little flaws by applying the “convert-sav-file-to-map-file-trick”.


The story is excellent and it immediately attracts you while reading those sentimentally written letters, describing the complete background of the past story and leading to the actual mission.

Summarizing, as always, a well-playable and enjoyable map by Kester, don’t miss it!

File Author
Thanks for the review, Stratego! :)

About the iron mines... I didn't mind leaving them abandoned. I did use the map->sav->map trick several times to get the rest of the areas populated. It was complicated by my not wanting the other areas to have keeps, and by the pesky habit they all had of killing each other if I let it run too long... ;-)

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Map Design4.0
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Size:750.98 KB