(updated 11/05/17) Zeus Heaven :: Agrigento
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Agrigento

Author File Description
walagos
File Details
Difficulty: Titan
Number of episodes: 4
Minimap:
is an adventure dedicated to the birth of Agrigento and its Valley of the Temples, not so difficult but beautiful. The map is as simple and dry as Sicily is. Fun fun.
AuthorComments & Reviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
walagos
File Author
Excuse me, can anyone tell me if everything is fine in the translation of history?
Gweilo2
Staff
Hi walagos,

I saw you submitted this campaign a second time. We only need one download of it here. So if you want to change something on it, please use the 'Update' button instead.

Thanks for your contribution to Zeus Heaven.
Mazeppa
Rating
1.6
Breakdown
Playability2.0
Balance1.0
Creativity1.0
Map Design2.0
Story/Instructions2.0
Agrigento is a four episode adventure which aims to take the player on a journey to experience the greek establishment of agrigento and the valley of the temples. The author also promises a fun campaign with full of "Titan difficulty" challenges packed in. Unfortunately, the adventure itself has failed to live up to these expectations.


Playability: 2

The entire gameplay in this adventure was focused entirely on one single bland map that had too many of the same EXACT events in each episode, and virtually no interesting challenge at all whatsoever. I also found the pacing to be lethargic and boring in gameplay. In terms of personal fun factor, this translates to zero appeal and zero fun, warranting a score of 2 in this category. Fortunately, the adventure had content consisting of objectives and events, making it somewhat playable; but if I'm allowed to review this adventure in terms of personal fun factor alone, this adventure would've been awarded a -1 or -2 at best. Unfortunately, Zeus heaven could not cater to my true rating on this category, so regrettably a score of 2 would have to suffice.

At the start of episode one, you start out with a rather generous amount of 24,000 drachmas in your treasury; more than enough to start out a decent housing block. Indeed, looking at the objectives, one may speculate that 24,000 dr would just about suffice for importing food and marble to build Hephaestus and Demeter's temples, but no. About a few months in, you get gifts of fish and marble, rendering that 24,000 dr completely redundant. And to make things even more convenient, around a year later the price of fleece rises to 100 dr, meaning that one can happily export fleece forever and not worry about his income anymore. This sort of "generosity" at the start, makes one question why on earth did the author label his adventure "Titan difficulty"? There's virtually zero challenge in this adventure.

At the next few episodes, you are then required to build temple after temple; pyramid after pyramid doing the same monotonous stuff of importing marble and wood, buffer a rival to ask for orichalc, and comply a request of "5 food" from Atlantide every couple of years.. for most of these episodes.. without any interesting variation whatsoever. Indeed, monster invasions kick in after episode one, but why worry? You just built apollo's sanctuary at episode two... Indeed, god invasions kick in from the start, annoying you every year til thy kingdom come, but why worry? They only consist of Hermes, Dionysus and Aphrodite who all do nothing harmful to your city anyway. Indeed, invasions kick in every episode, but why worry? They only consist of 4 men, and by the time you reach the last episode in olympian mode, bribing 6,000 dr every year would not even pull your profits down.

With such lackluster scripting of events and such boring gameplay, what's there to enjoy? With all due respect, finishing this adventure was not even remotely satisfying, I'm afraid.


Balance: 1

Every episode in this adventure seems to be lacking in any kind of challenge or difficulty, that only the most inexperienced players would struggle to win. Giving the player 24,000 dr at the start while giving gifts of fish and marble to "bump-start" the player even more is far too convenient to guarantee any challenge. Furthermore, inclusions of situations such as introducing one enemy god invasion every single year and setting up one or two monster invasions every episode when the player already had Apollo's sanctuary built at episode 2 is not really an interesting situation to face in an adventure. More annoying than interesting, actually. Taking into account all of this, I find no choice but to award the minimum rating in this category.

Things like this is not what you call a balanced adventure. You need to challenge the player in different aspects of the game, and do it in fair and reasonable ways to make an interesting game. Not force the player to do the same thing every episode. Have some variation, like a city suffering famine and stops trading for a while.. something that makes it different from the other episodes.


Creativity: 1

There is unfortunately very little that makes 5 episodes of this adventure stand out from each other, as nothing much was done to differentiate between them. As a result, each episode quickly becomes stale one after the other and further interest in this adventure gets torn asunder due to the EXACT same events that occur at every consecutive episode.

The world map is also designed very poorly and no effort was made to even make it accurate. Greek cities are placed in Spain and France etc (Aulis in Spain? Really???), sea trade routes are placed in land trade routes, and Egypt.. is.. a greek city? In fact, creativity is so terrible that out of the 9 "Greek" cities existing in the world map, only 5 were relevant.. Relevant as in - they are just "punching bags" in your journey for "World domination"... (I thought this adventure was about temple building, not conquering greek cities like egypt, atlantis and troy... Wait a minute, they're not even greek!)

I'm sorry. Last time I checked, placing greek cities in random locations of the world map, making a map of sicily in 2 minutes and putting the same events over and over again in every episode and calling it a day is not what you call creativity.


Map Design: 2

Only one map was provided for this adventure and as you can see, it is abysmal in quality. This negatively affects the adventure's gameplay as a whole. With vast blank areas and nothing to add apart from scrubs which took around 5 minutes to do, there is obviously very little to assess here, and the entire map is in need of a complete renovation.

Moreover, this was supposed to be an "accurate map" of Sicily set in 7th century BC, according to the author. Unfortunately, it is so historically inaccurate a map that it is completely evident the creator was too lazy to at least add any sort of topography on this map to resemble Sicily, other than the coast (assuming he researched on Agrigento). Sicily at this time, was famous for its olive trees and vine yards. It is very hilly in terrain and its mountains range from 3,000 to 6,000 feet. In fact, Sicily was so fertile inland that it was very profitable to set up trading.

Just looking at this fact, one would question why on earth did the creator not add meadows and mountains to at least simulate an accurate resemblance? A good challenge could even be worked around very easily in the editor. And why did the creator insist on using Sicily as a template for his map? Agrigento is a place IN SICILY, not sicily as a whole.


Story/Instructions: 2

The author has provided a story in this adventure which looked somewhat promising until the second episode, when it lacked immersion altogether and as a result, detract from the experience.

This is also what I deem to be the strangest part of this adventure. From episode two onwards, the story turned into a mesh-up of greek myths put together, which had nothing to do with Sicily. Such examples include the story of how Achilles became invincible and slew hector at TROY, Theseus going to CRETE and killing the minotaur etc. Indeed, these heroes and monsters were included in their respective episodes, but how did it even relate to Sicily? Why on earth were there stories of Theseus in Crete and Achilles killing Hector at Troy in this adventure??? All which had nothing to do with Sicily?

Furthermore, the countless typos and errors in this adventure were also too glaring to even avoid. Normally I turn a blind eye to spelling typos, but when a story illustrates the Trojan War and says Achilles "killed Hector in a duel and dragged him TO HIS GRANDDAUGHTER", I just can't pretend everything's alright. I'm sorry.


Additional comments:
Tl;dr - it's just 5 episodes, ordering you to do the same thing over and over again.. 5 episodes full of conveniences. If you're an intermediate player or above, it'd be best to ignore this one. There's nothing to miss and it would not be worth your time. It's a shame really.. the setting and background would've made this an interesting adventure, but it is poorly executed. I'd probably recommend this to newcomers who just learnt how to play the game, but looking at the quality of the map, even this would probably be a turn-off.

And please change the difficulty. This adventure is more like mortal difficulty, not titan.

[Edited on 12/15/17 @ 11:37 PM]

walagos
File Author
Dear Mazeppa, patience. it means that this time I did not earn my salary, so you will not pay me.
Mazeppa ... Okay.

You don't even need a salary or an immature response like that to create high-rated adventures. Furthermore, it's not even an average level of proficiency to create an adventure with a single bland map and bland events created with minimal effort, Mr. "Egypt-is-a-greek-city"... Here's how to make an adventure that earns more than a 1.6:

1. Start with a blank map and plan an outline of it. Create natural terrain like rocks, cliffs, shrubs, lakes using the smallest brush, and detail it to the point that the map actually looks decent. Load pecunia's map tool and observe what parts look right and what parts need work. Don't just draw a coast and a line of shrubs and just leave it alone like that.

2. Don't put random greek cities in areas like Gaul and Spain. Do some research; look up names of cities in those places. Zeus even allows you to make Phoenician, Egyptian, Trojan cities etc. Make your world map believable. Put trade routes that don't contradict the world map and beautify them. Don't just leave them as straight lines.

3. Be creative. Ensure that each episode have their own character. Make sure they differ to each other in terms of challenges and gameplay. Playtest your adventure to see whether the events play out right, and make sure it's well suited to its intended difficulty level.

4. Add a believable story so the player cares about what is happening. Don't just take random greek myths and put it in a text file and call it a day. Doing that is simply bad writing. Ensure that it fits and makes sense in your story progression.

5. Rinse and repeat until you're done. Make each map different with varied gameplay, and a storyline that picks up in each episode where the last left off, then combine that and call it an adventure.

You should try to make content that is enjoyable and worth people's time when you upload files here. Bland, empty maps that provide near identical gameplay in every episode are the bottom of the barrel and deserve their low ratings, like your adventure did.

But I suppose you're just going to ignore all of this and reply with immature, sarcastic ad hominems in a generic effort to "pretend" that you don't care?

[Edited on 12/16/17 @ 02:01 AM]

walagos
File Author
Dear Mazeppa, I thank God for having created us similar but fortunately not EQUAL. With this I mean that the criticism is welcome, but you can not expect me to make an adventure according to your tastes or its rules, dear Mazeppa. If you do not like this adventure, it does not mean that you do not like to no one because I am part of the many "none". The word adventure can also mean "fable" and in the tales you can write about everything, even in the times of Agrigento could exist Atlantis (as Plato said) or that a city named Auli was in that area. If you like a map that is bare and unobstructed, why should not you like it, but you have to do it as you like it, dear Mazeppa ??? You expressed a judgment, thank you for dedicating me some of your precious time, but, as I said, you can not expect me to play a game (born as fun for myself and for many fans), according to your tastes. Thank you and sorry , hoping that the translation is correct.
Mazeppa Alright, thank you for the good civil response you have given, walagos and this is highly appreciated. Unfortunately, you misunderstood me in my previous reply (which I probably believe now that this was where the "salary" remark may have stemmed from?).

Anyway, I wasn't ordering you to play the game or do things according to my taste. All I'm doing is listing key factors and habits that could improve your adventure in order that you may create a better adventure in the future. There is a saying that one should be slower to speak, but quicker to listen. These habits don't alter your adventure drastically, but it improves your adventure by a mile. You can take those key factors I recommended and use them for your adventures if you want to. It's all your choice, really.

But putting up walls before suggestions and improvement means that you'll continue to be getting low ratings and negative opinions for your other files in the future. In fact, this is the first time I've rated your adventure, but looking at your other adventures, you seem to be getting low ratings and low opinions from even other users, especially from experienced players; so I'm not the only one who hates bare and unobstructed cities. In fact, looking at Zeus heaven's history, a LOT of people hate those features with a passion and most of them don't even consider those adventures worth playing. Like I said previously, you can take some of my suggestions if you want, coming from a fellow player. It's your choice.

Regarding my review though, was I a little too condescending? I did say that the adventure's background and setting was interesting, but were my words harsh explaining key features in your adventure? If this is true, then I apologize, for I might have not been aware that I have crossed the line and jumped from the critique corner, right into personal bashing - which was not what I intended. I probably may have to tone my reviews down in the future.

If it makes you feel better, I will refrain from posting reviews for your future adventures. But when I see an adventure that's decent in my eyes coming from you, I might pop in a favourable one if I'm still around.

[Edited on 12/16/17 @ 11:27 PM]


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Rating
1.6
Breakdown
Playability2.0
Balance1.0
Creativity1.0
Map Design2.0
Story/Instructions2.0
Statistics
Downloads:359
Favorites: [Who?]0
Size:250.68 KB
Added:10/30/17
Updated:11/05/17
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