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Earth and Water

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This is my long overdue sequel to The Seventh Wonder. I'm sorry it took so long. The story line is loosely based on the Persian Wars culminating in the Battle of Marathon. The Persian army is very large so success will depend on help from your allies. It is challenging but not impossible. Good luck and have fun.
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Map Design4.0
Playability: 5
This is a challenging adventure designed more for the militaristic advanced player. With that caveat in mind, it rates 5 stars on my 'fun-meter'.

Balance: 5
Crank this one up to Olympian level and have at it. You won't be disappointed. You'll find revealed to you a beautiful adventure design that gives you just enough chances to succeed - but only if you take advantage of every little opportunity in trade and diplomacy. This adventure is a sheer delight for advanced players who love to micromanage. The sense of accomplishment you feel after finally turning Marathon into a bustling military hub speaks volumes about the top-quality balance put into this adventure. I hadn't felt this much satisfaction in a CB custom adventure in a long time.

Creativity: 4
The creativity is detailed and good, and makes you forget that the sum total of the adventure is only four parent episodes and one colony. Money is very tight in the first couple of episodes, and it was a nice touch that only two allied cities will give bail-out loans (and not really big ones). The maps were well-done and realistic-looking. The story was engaging and the plotline was maintained throughout. Some nice scripting was used, sometimes requiring the player to juggle multiple challenges simultaneously. Disaster scripting was used prudently and not without warning to a player. The trade commodities among the allied cities was well-thought-out, and balanced together very nicely.

Map Design: 4
The Marathon map was detailed and realistic-looking (which always earns higher marks from me). The Lemnos colony map is a good example of a well-designed island. The world map was good too.

Story/Instructions: 4
I enjoyed the history-based storyline (even if it was only loosely based). The story was solid, and the plotline built as the episodes progressed. My only complaint was that the story was a bit sparse, I would have loved to read more about the events in the war with the Persians.

Additional Comments:
This adventure offers the best of two play experiences which occur during different phases of the adventure: the tough early challenges of establishing a city with limited funds, allies, and trade opportunites; and then later facing strategic and tactical military decisions on your own map, as well as on the world map.

I had a blast playing this one, and highly recommend it.

[Edited on 10/07/06 @ 08:42 PM]

Map Design1.0
Playability: 5
The map is easy. The starting is kinda challenged but if you pass it; this will be a piece of cake.

Balance: 4
Well, the map has some what of balance if you know to raid spartan for wood then map is 100% balance

Creativity: 3
Very original. it's simple and boring

Map Design: 1
Map is completely empty. Look at it. you should add some doodads and wild animal or just make ruin in beginning.

Story/Instructions: 2
Short and Random

Additional Comments: It's fun to play and good for burning your time
Map Design5.0
Playability: 5

Wow, what an addictive adventure! :o
A possible starting challenge with only 500 drachmas to build your starting city (especially on Olympian!) made that scenario a memorable experience for me. That episode was great.

Furthermore, like Gweilo said, it was a great satisfaction to turn marathon into a military city and also the colony, subject to a particular disaster raised up the challenge in this adventure; it was like I was playing an adventure that came with the game itself :o

Though, I would personally love it more if there was another colony present that would be more militaristic; as lemnos was purely economic. But a great adventure nonetheless.

Balance: 4

The first episode looked really dangerous to do, with 500 drachmas, however it was very fast for me to actually get some income after one year - I tend to be quick when it comes to building at the start and as episode 2 progressed, it became much easier and the challenge aspect got a bit lost after episode 1. I still would've loved another adrenaline pumping challenge equal to episode 1 :(

Then, during the colony episode, a type of disaster would force a player to re-build his progress again. Luckily though, that actually didn't affect me, I was building at the most north-western part of the island and my industry was at the most south-eastern part. I just got lucky there :)

Then, after the colony episode, things became drastic as a drunk tart ended up destroying my city randomly and I somehow couldn't get enough wine - the #$%^& destroyed it! :( , but regarding that, I took that as an accepted challenge and was relieved after achilles came :)

It was an enjoyable adventure :) but, here's why I graded it a 4 instead of a 5. I became a little disappointed with the last episode. Having all those conquering objectives, I would expect a bunch of invasions from those cities rather than just a few. I'm not sure if there were actually; as I speed-played the episode and the invasions that I actually saw could easily be bribed. It would be great if there were a few more invasions in the earlier episodes or possibly a few invasions in the last episode with 10-15k or more drachmas in value that would be difficult to avoid. If there were either of those, that could've easily been a 5 for me :)

Creativity: 3

The scripting was pretty ok-ish and the starting challenge in the 1st episode is a thumbs-up for me. The objectives in each episode somehow gave it a sense of addictiveness and accomplishment after I completed them. It was a pretty nice adventure.

But the world map could be improved a little. I tend to dislike straight lines - perhaps make the routes somehow.. Curve up or something.. Other than straight lines. Some of the scripting too, was a little repetitive as the adventure reared on - such as Eretria and Athens requesting military assistance in 2 or 3 episodes. though I could understand that based on the story.

Moreover, the objectives in lemnos didn't exactly maintain the awe and addictive quality of its previous episodes; I didn't have the same feel as I did in the parent city, though in the next chapter, the addictiveness turned back on :).

Map Design: 5

The parent city was so detailed that I just spent 10 minutes admiring the landscape before building a city :D

The colony map also had a nice touch with detail here and there, I loved the maps. :P

Also, I could see from the Zeus mapper program how much you tried to improve the landscape in Lemnos and in fact, I really liked it, so that's an added bonus for me as it was evident that you spent a great deal of time modifying your maps. :)

Story/Instructions: 2

The story was very sparse; almost empty.. Only a few lines of text and that's it. With a historical perspective in the storyline, surely there should be a little bit more than just a few lines. Also, you could even give some clues to the player to what will happen in the scenario and the reasons behind it - and in addition, the reasons why we had to fulfil those objectives.The reason behind the Athena and Ares sanctuary goal was ok, but why Poseidon?
Why did a particular monstery drunk tart appear in one episode?
Why did hephaestus attack lemnos (though, we the audience would've understood why due to the Lemnos colony episode in the Argonauts adventure submitted in the game itself, we should expect you to still provide that text - if that was in your idea, that is. Otherwise, make a reason why).
Why did Hermes attack the city?

And also.. Why end the adventure with "Excelsior"? I mean.. Come on, I don't even know what that is o.O

I would've gave it a 1 in story/instructions but it oddly was a little engaging, so I kept at 2 for the sake of that.

Additional Comments:
What the hell is excelsior? o.O

[Edited on 12/15/13 @ 08:44 PM]

Map Design5.0
Great adventure! Just missed horsemans in the end to conquer the enemies. The start was very creative forcing the player to limited resources in the corner of the map.

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