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  #1  
Old January 25th, 2005, 08:20 PM
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Default Chandrea V4.3 (94prov) _AND_ Drea V4.3 (49 prov)

Attachment is only a small jpg overview. See next post for download link of the actual high-resolution .tga and .map files (5MB)!

Most recent is V4.3 (verify the number displayed in the map's title), which is described at Post#395567 . [b]DREA V4.3 (version with only 49 provinces) is also described in the aforementioned post.

Version history:
  • Mapfile of Version 3.6 is attached to Post#386705. Note that the tga has for V3.6 is different from the one for V4.3. Although they are white-dot compatiple, they do differ in province neighbourhood.
  • See post Post#384075 for more info about V3.4. V3.4 consists only of a new .map file. Please use the .tga-file from V3.3.
  • See post Post#371955 for more info about V3.3.
  • For changes in previous version 1.03 see older post Post#339513 right here within this thread!
  • There might be some issues that I still want to change, hence a ToDo-List is present at Post#340052.
---

Welcome to the rugged Land of Chandrea, also known as the dunken donut: It is a medium-sized wrap-around map (102 provinces), based upon maps from "Wizards Kings", a fantasy strategy hex-based board game by Columbia Games. I got their permission to distribute this map for private purposes. I do not now that board game yet, but someone here on the Dom2-Forum pointed out awhile ago that the Wizard Kings maps might make nice wrap-around maps for Dom2 too. Well, we'll see...

See the map's more detailed description in the next post.

I tried my best guess to make it into a balanced dom2-map, but I am lacking the time to play on it intensively now, for I just have to finish my ongoging Dom2 games first. However, I did not want to delay publishing of this map anymore either, so I am here asking for your help to play-test my map so that I can balance it out for fair multiplayer games!

Because of the pervading oceans, my first guess would be that it is sensible to either play Vanheim, Marignon:Conquerors of the Sea,
Oceania, R'yleh, Caelum, Ermor or a water-cult (or to otherwise insist that nobody else plays one of these nations ). Please observe my recommendation to ban fortress-building on all bridges and using a magic-site frequency of 40 or below because of the many-site provinces.

Please post any mistakes and proposed changes to the map file here! I would hate it if there were various corrected vesions, since I took the trouble to give each province a new unique name. The names are silly enough to be recalled in another game, so all versions of Chandrea should be similar enough that these unique names are of use. (Do you know where e.g. the "Rift of Zyx" lies on Karan? Yes? See!)

Note furthermore that the map can be cut in half horizontally to yield two further, smaller wrap-around maps, but I do not recommend doing it until this one has been balanced out and corrected.

Have fun playing and thanks for reading through. Post#395567
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  #2  
Old January 25th, 2005, 08:28 PM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map need

Due to upload-space limitations, the zipfile could not be attached to this post. It might become available for downloand within a couple of hours/days Arryn's and/or Arralen site. Thanks!


The file contains the .tga, a changes.txt and two .map files. Here is the detailed description text included in the .map file for V3.2:

Welcome to the rugged lands of Chandrea:

94 provinces, of which are 18 water, 16 cities, 4 wastelands, and 3 swamps.

Legend:

* All cities, symbolized by orange circles, are densly populated large woodland provinces (i.e. high population, high resources).

* Each city is occupied/defended by two Wizard-Kings, a fellow Priest and their friends. If you do not like them, deleting them from the mapfile should be easy.

* All land starting locations are cities. (Can be turned off at each game creation.)

* Blue lines represent common shipping lines usable by unskilled sailors.

* Brown roads ensure province connection, but are meaningless otherwise.

* Many-site provinces can be recognized by unusual graphical features (6).

* Cities yield 2 victory points, Many-site provinces yield 1 victory point, Total VP: 38.

* All provinces names are non-random to ease memorization and role-play.

* Play with neighbors-mapfilter enabled until you know the map (press 8).

My personal recommendations for play:

6-10 players, independent strength 6, victory points (22) or dominion (666).

The map is based upon maps from 'Wizards Kings', a fantasy strategy hex-based board game by Columbia Games (www.columbiagames.com). Permission to use this map for private purposes is kindly granted by Columbia Games. The map was reworked and de-hexed by Chazar de Waahn, who is not connected to Columbia Games in any way. As long as this paragraph is included, you are free to distribute (and maybe alter) this map for non-profit purposes. Chazar can be contacted through Shrapnel's Dominions2 Forum. Always remember to have fun!
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Old January 25th, 2005, 08:37 PM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map need

Post became obsolete due to extensive editing of previous posts.
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Old January 26th, 2005, 03:29 AM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map need

30,000,000 gives 30 MB (a bit less than that, but more than 29 MB), but the limit might be expressed in bits rather than in bytes (where a byte is equal to eight bits). If it is so, the actual limit is below 4 MB, around 3.6 MB or so. The limit does say it is bytes, but that could be a typo, or there is something else altogether going on here.

You might wish to try to compress your map in the RAR format, which usually leads to some gains in compression over Zip. That could be enough to drop the size below those 3.5/3.6 MB, assuming it is actually the limit.

As for the description, I think the trick to keep formatting requires to use an Unix formatting (using linefeeds at the end of each line). You would then add two newlines in a row to create a new paragraph. Cutting and pasting the description from another map with the proper formatting may be another solution: the linefeeds signs should appear then, and you would only have to paste them where they are needed.
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Old January 26th, 2005, 03:37 AM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map need

Hello! I also cannot download your file, sorry. WIll try again later.
Question: Are you also interesting in making sure that the map should also be playable for nations which are not Van, CotS, Caelum, etc.? Will also try to test for that.
Question2: These "bridges" provinces, which I can currently not see -- do they also have population? Then it seems that it may be odd to have them as distinct provinces.
But of course I will wait for the map.
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Old January 26th, 2005, 04:03 AM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map needed

Quote:
Chazar said:I do not now that board game yet, but someone here on the Dom2-Forum pointed out awhile ago that the Wizard Kings maps might make nice wrap-around maps for Dom2 too.
Well, I guess I am "guilty" for that Nice that somebody who knows how to make maps took the time to work with them, I sure would like to test the map

Too bad I am not able to download the map, unless it is the .jpg file attached to the first post (that has a picture of the map, looks good ).
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Old January 26th, 2005, 06:32 AM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map need

  • Mapfile:Arralen volunteered to host the map on his webspace. I have just emailed the map to him, and he will probably give notice once he has it up. Thanks!
    @Alneyan:Even splitting it into two smaller files (2,5MB) did not help. All I got were some error messages that there is something wrong with the post's header. This is really annoying!
  • Description:I actually wrote the description with xemacs on a linux system, so there should be linefeeds, but I am going to check that, thanks!
  • Nations: I think that nations that are aquatic or are otherwise agile by sailing and flying will have an even better advantage than usual. There is a lot of water on the map which hampers movement, though I included some shipping lines to help those who cannot move over water (i.e. I merely connected some provinces across the water, but this gives flyers an illogically increased reach. So maybe those shipping lines need to be removed again.)

    However, you can play with any nation - there are no predefined starting positions. Maybe the odd water cult themes could be exceptionally useful here. And add Ermor to the list, for they can also cross water pretty easily.
  • Bridges:Initially I wanted to include road-provinces to model roads (see earlier thread), but then decided against that. However, the maps I reprocessed included some bridge pictures, and I thought to make them into chokepoints by giving each bridge a province status having population. The bridges are all small provinces (the only other small provinces are two mountain passes and a coastroad). We shall see whether this is a good idea, but I think it is not to illogical that bridges have population: Small settlements were usually founded at places were one can cross the river, so think of the bridge-province to include the area around the bridge as well, but it would just look ugly to give each bridge its own province boundary line.

    Someone suggested to give these bridge (or road provinces) known sites for supply, so that big armies can use bridges without the fear of starving, but I decided against it, for bridges should be bottlenecks...

    However, I think that the game would be slowed down to much if bridges could be fortified, so I think it might be sensible to ban fortifications on bridges, but that is of course up to everybody himself...

    Oh, btw, aquatics can only swim upriver until they hit a bridge. They should be able to enter the bridge however. I might have forgotten to connect each bridge to its adjacent sea province, so tell me if there is such a spot (cant check right now).


  • @Jarkko:Thanks for pointing that out. I am by no means an expert for map drawing, but no one else seemed to pick up your suggestion. I think Dom2 definitely lacks smaller/medium-sized wrap-around maps. Anyway, just converting the hex-based wizard kings maps was not so difficult...
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Old January 26th, 2005, 07:48 AM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map need

You can download the map *deleted - the server is no longer available*

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Old January 26th, 2005, 09:26 AM
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Default Re: Playtesters for new small wrap-around map need

Had a quick look at it. It's great.
Only some minor issues:

It's too big: The Cradle Map (220 prov) is 1600x1600 pixels, yet Chandrea is 1500x2188. This makes the icons appear very small if in standard size.
Solution would be to re-do the map in ~1300x1300 pixels, or, alternativly, use #defaultmapzoom x.y command, with x.y= 0.8 - 1.2 as it suits your taste.

Nevertheless, you could't get a complete overview even at minimum zoom.

City shouldn't be grassland: Grassland has about -50% ressources vs. Plains, and even those don't have much. But ressources in DOM aren't ore, but production capacity, which may come from ore, wood, trade or whatever. By making cities grassland, they won't be able to produce anything unless you plant a high admin castle there. And even than output will be small, as in inherent ress would be doubled, but only a %tage drawn from the neigbouring prov. So a wood/mountain province with a watchtower could have a higher production capacity than a city with a castle ...

Furthermore it's slightly irritating that province flags show up in the cities, but those might not be centered in the province at all.

So my suggestions: Make all city icons provinces on their own, maybe even with pre-build forts or pre-placed site (Archaic or Firbolg Fortress etc., which the AI tends to find reliably. Pre-Known Sites do not work, as castles are generated on finding it) Pre-placed castles is better for AI players, which tend to go for every castle they see. Players on the other hand could 'cheat' by taking over the province, but never attacking the province troops which defend the castle, not the province.

Making the city province "plain, large", it will have lots of inhabitants, but also some usuable ressources. Province border may have to be adjusted, so that the cities do not border only the province they're in atm. A city with multiple neighbours could one or more of them turned into grassland, so there're still some high-income provinces around.

More after I did some test games ...
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Old January 26th, 2005, 05:59 PM
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Default Design decisions behind Chandrea...

  • Cities as farmlands: I think that cities should be highly valuable focal places, therefore making them into large farmlands seemed logical. Furthermore I think that it is good to discourage chosing a lot of sloth and a low-admin castle. However, maybe it would be a good solution just to add a known resource-bonus site like an iron-mine to each city - if other people think so as well.

    Previously I had cities as their own provinces, but later on I decided against, as it would make the map bigger and even more inaccessible. It also seemed illogical to me that a player could fortify both the city and its sourroundings. Similar to Arralen's proposal, I already tried to shift the province boundaries somewhat, so that cities and their surrounding provinces became identical. BTW, this is in the end the reason why the flags are still placed within the cities...

    I also thought about outfitting each city with a thematic "fortified city"-fortress, but then opted against it as it would discourage choosing such a fortress type even more. The resource issue and the benefits for AI are good points. What do other people think?

  • Mapsize: I deliberately choose a big map size. The main reason was that Dom2 breaks the picture up into tiles. These tiles are displayed overlapping, producing a notable glitch. The higher the resolution, the lesser the glitch. I also think that smaller icons for fortess and temepls are quite nice, since they do not obstruct the map view anymore but are still noticeable. On the other hand, I admit that it is annoying not to view the whole map at once, but only a small portion is hidden at minimum zoom. I do not see that this is a really big problm - while resampling the map means a lot of work, especially replacing all province dots (Due to inexperience, I merged all layers before placing the white dots. Placing them again means doing the .map file again from scratch, which is a thing that I do not want to do.) Good point about the default zoom though!
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