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Pike & Plunder 2.5

Author File Description
shieldwolf23
File Details
Style: Mix
Number of scenarios: 1
Needs AoC?: No
The scenario takes place in Italy, during the years 1494 to 1559, at a period historians call the Italian Wars. This war involved most of the city-states of Italy, the Papal States, most of the major states of Western Europe (particularly France and Spain), as well as the Ottoman Empire. Originally arising from dynastic disputes over the Duchy of Milan and the Kingdom of Naples, the wars rapidly became a general struggle for power and territory among their various participants, and were marked with an increasing degree of alliances, counter-alliances, and regular betrayals. This is the atmosphere this scenario hopes to re-create.

This has been intended as part of Empire Creation's "Europe at War" campaign. Created at around early 2010, I owe a heap of thanks to the awesome guys at EC, particularly Talknight, Soty and altec tek for devoting time and effort in playtesting the original scenario, which I know was at that time, a very very difficult one (according to Talknight, "unwinnable").

This version, however, has been extensively playtested by me (on hard difficulty) within a one-month period.

The file includes a full-fledged Strategy Guide to help newbies and veterans alike to win this very challenging scenario.

>>> Note on Version 1.5:
Since the AI in this scenario is active, it is similar to playing a random map in that the AI has all freedom to either attack you or not earlier in the game. The seasonal attacks that are trigger-based are made every 30-game-minutes interval, so that any major attacks by the AI, especially during the early minutes of the game, is purely the AI's decision. To counter that, I have put a limit on AI's population, made some adjustments on AI attributes, and gave out a cheat code that spawns you 10 to 20 knights.

>>> Note on Version 2.0:
I put some enemy towns in Tunisia, Corsica and Lower Lyon. Added pirate raiders too.

>>> Note on Version 2.5:
Unit renames, alliances checking on support as well as a few extra events (among others) have been made.

Thanks to altec tek, aquril and spearhead for the reviews and feedback! Enjoy! :)
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AuthorComments & Reviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
Aquril /downloaded

[Edited on 05/27/12 @ 03:08 PM]

Spearhead123 Hmmm, it has been some time since I downloaded, around the same time as Aquril. But for some reason only one download seems to be recorded.
Aquril I first wrote the comment,
then i pressed the download button.
(no one had downloaded it when i was writing it) :3

Altough it lagged when i pressed the download button and after like 1min it started to load.
so yes, ya beated me to first download:3

[Edited on 05/27/12 @ 03:17 PM]

shieldwolf23
File Author
thanks aquril, spearhead.
aLteC teK Downloaded!
aLteC teK I have gone through the strategy guide. That was the best, most detailed strategy guide I've ever read. It was awesome. I'm going to start playing the scenario now
shieldwolf23
File Author
thanks tek! :D I have thought a lot about the "difficulty" of the scenario, and I do hope that it is now beatable. I still remember your playtests (tal and soty's as well) and most of you said that the scen was "unwinnable". Hopefully, you'll win! :)
aLteC teK
Rating
4.7
Breakdown
Playability5.0
Balance4.0
Creativity4.9
Map Design4.5
Story/Instructions5.0
Pike & Plunder is a scenario that shows a divided Italy during the middle ages. The player chooses a faction to portray, and the main goal is to conquer the other factions and become the ruler of the region.

Playability: 5
From my experience, the playability of Pike & Plunder is flawless. Shieldwolf, in typical fashion, has created a masterpiece scenario. This scenario reminds me of the acclaimed Venice by Von Bert. I absolutely recommend any player who enjoys strategy and realistic AI to put this at the top of their 'to play' list.

Balance: 4
Amended for version 2.0

The balance is much improved from earlier, when I believe it was too difficult, even on easy. Now, having played on easy, I still found it challenging due to my strategy for winning (cover the map with settlements, hospitals and towers while garrisoning 500 + soldiers in fortresses)

This was, however, much more comfortable a scenario, and really made this scenario that much more enjoyable. Definitely + 1 full point for balance improvements

Creativity: 4.9
Shieldwolf has developed a complex formula for economics and strategy in the past, but this scenario makes these processes user friendly. Without being too detailed, Shield has creates trade routes, upkeep and taxation triggers to bring the realities of economics to the forefront. He has also made each factions unique through unit-attributes, economic positioning, and location on the maps. One of my favorite concepts is one that adds and subtracts from the population cap depending on towns owned. Excellent job all around.

Map Design: 4.5
The map appears historical accurate from birds view, and that is because it is. Shield once again takes the time to create a recognizable map of Italy and surrounding regions. There were a few areas on the map that lacked a natural look, or sufficient mixing/eye candy. But, for the most part this was an excellent map. Shield has done a good job using the map to better influence strategy and tactics utilized by the player.

Story/Instructions: 5
The first thing that comes to mind is the detailed descriptions of each unique concept presented to the player. Shield leaves no stone unturned in his explanation of how trade, taxation, upkeep, hiring mercenaries, and other triggers work for the player. He has given the player a fantastic walk through via text-file. The instructions were clear and precise and the goals were outlined on the map. Shield provided a background and history to what brought these nation-states together in hopes of conquest. FIVE ration for sure!

Additional Comments:

Shieldwolf is top tier, and Pike & Plunder is another scenario that proves this. Great work! I am thankful to have a designer so committed to excellence!

- tek

[Edited on 06/12/12 @ 07:40 PM]

aLteC teK Reviewed
shieldwolf23
File Author
And here I am, thinking I have nailed the difficulty levels! :D

Thanks for the very kind words, tek. I'll definitely update the file.
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Rating
4.8
Breakdown
Playability4.9
Balance4.5
Creativity4.9
Map Design4.7
Story/Instructions4.9
Statistics
Downloads:2,472
Favorites: [Who?]1
Size:2.44 MB
Added:05/26/12
Updated:06/17/12