Five new maps coming up - testers needed

The old Heroes games developed by New World Computing. Please specify which game you are referring to in your post.

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Yurian Stonebow
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Postby Yurian Stonebow » Jan 14 2008, 21:43

Update 14th Jan, -08



Operation Turning Point (H3:SoD, Co-Op map of size M)is ready for testing. It now has more quests, better graphics and more carefully planned and tried overall balance in CPU vs Humans. What it lacks is testing and some more testing (by folks other than me and my wife and the rest of my usual team).

I'm sincerally sorry for failing to deliver the map in time for Christmas but this was due to real life issues as well as making other maps at the same time. It seems that I have my spoon on too many soups to handle them all at the same time.

Future projects: H3 map on my hometown, (well a City actually) Helsinki
H3 map on the Roman Empire
H3 map on Antarctica
H3 map on Mesopotamia (major risk for me, too political?)
H3 campaign on a well-known fantasy series



As always, contact me for more information. Some of these projects may need additional people so I can easily turn them into group project instead of my one man's show. ;)


Stay tuned for more.




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Postby ByteBandit » Jan 14 2008, 22:35

You do it again Yurian. Good for you. And, I will recommend you have them ready for testing at CH, and the Map Archives. As I stated to you in a PM, I too, have a plate full of HoMM myself. Otherwise, I would lend you a hand. Your work is very, very good stuff! :)

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Postby Muszka » Jan 15 2008, 3:23

I'm in for testing. You can send me the map by mail anytime you want.
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Postby ByteBandit » Jan 15 2008, 5:10

Yes, Yurian. Muszka is an excellent tester. If he offers his sevices, I advise you take it while you can. He has helped me with a HUGE project that we are wrapping up for H4 maps. He'll keep you busy with things you may of overlooked. Believe me. (Ohh.....that's a good thing, btw) ;) I know how much of a perfectionist you are with your maps. This is your man!

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Postby Muszka » Jan 15 2008, 13:05

Thanks for the kind words ByteBandit. It almost makes me to blush. You have better opinion of my testing capabilities than me. :)
Last edited by Muszka on Jan 15 2008, 19:46, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Yurian Stonebow » Jan 15 2008, 18:53

@Muszka


Thank you for your co-operation with the project. I will send you, Muszka, the map later this today (late night) after I'm finished with another thing under process. I may include an alternative special edition of my already released H3:SoD map Viking Invasion as a bonus is that is what you as the map tester want and if you have enough spare time to have a look on that map as well. Viking Invasion is a size XL map that now comes with improved balance and a more realistic looking map of Europe. Much more into detail, one might say. ByteBandit's trust in you means you're a dedicated map tester indeed. Once again thanks and in advance, good luck with testing. :)



@ByteBandit

Sorry for not replying earlier but I have been busy. I will send you a bunch of maps and pics and some extras later today, depending how fast
I'll be through with another Heroes map waiting for some testing. There's always something going on and you never know when inspiration comes and hits you. But I will keep on working, that's a firm promise. I've got some hidden ace's up my sleeve you know. Just wait and see. ;)






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Postby Muszka » Jan 15 2008, 19:37

My spare time is somewhat unpredictable. But I'll do my best.
I have the greatest experience in H3 of all the HoMMs, so I don't need too much time for a map.

I will happily accept any new map, even more if that map is a special edition.
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Postby ByteBandit » Jan 16 2008, 3:59

Take your time, Yurian. No need to rush. Upload them at your convenience. I know when I'm mapmaking and I have an inspiration, everything else is put on hold. :)

Muszka. If I thought you were'nt up to the task you would be just playing maps, now would'nt you? :D ;)

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Postby Muszka » Jan 16 2008, 12:18

ByteBandit wrote:Muszka. If I thought you were'nt up to the task you would be just playing maps, now would'nt you? :D ;)
:)
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Postby Yurian Stonebow » Jan 16 2008, 17:30

@Muszka

Please Check your email and you'll see a message there from me. It's from my web mail account at the University of Helsinki and signed by my real name.
I hope you like the map "Operation Turning Point" and the map and nice extras in the zip "Viking Invasion".
Merry gaming! :)


@ByteBandit

Please check your email to see the good bits and the nice bits I found on my own Heroes III Map Archives. I included them all on independent zip files, so there should be quite much "Heroism" in that message. ;)




With solidarity,








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Postby Muszka » Jan 17 2008, 2:19

Thanks for the map. I received the mail, and I replayed to it.
Great thanks for the Special Edition map. I feel honored by it.
I post again as soon as I played the map(hopefully in 24 hours).
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Postby ByteBandit » Jan 17 2008, 3:16

I got your packet of maps and goodies, too, Yurian. I thank you. I will post them on the Archives soon, as one package. Probably on MA6. I just recieved a map today, that I've wanted for a while to post on the Archives now. The corrected and very playable Empire of the World II. We had the standard older version for the longest time, but now we have the "good" one. :) I'm stoked!

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Postby Koni » Jan 17 2008, 23:04

ByteBandit wrote:I just recieved a map today, that I've wanted for a while to post on the Archives now. The corrected and very playable Empire of the World II. We had the standard older version for the longest time, but now we have the "good" one. :) I'm stoked!


I'm very interested, where you have got it from. I myself know (from a RT user), that there was a bugged map and I could help him with the "good" one, but also with a bug, (pink God of fire disappered without reason). For me, I made a (German texted) updated version without any bugs (and some added quests). Are you interested to examine it and eventually post it on your Archives?

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Postby Muszka » Jan 18 2008, 1:33

I played the Operation Turningpoint.
What could I say? It has no errors.
I think there are no balance issues, still it's somewhat unique, with each position.
It's a pure MP map, though it can be played SP it's by far nat that enjoyable. Even more it's a very good quick-time-2vs2vs-some-AI-map.

I would have only one suggestion. You could let Blue to be Human or CPU instead of CPU, for those who can't or dislike MP with CPU to be a better SP map, but this is only a suggestion.
I played on Impossible, so it's must be playable on other difficulties too. But if you want I may give it a try on an easier setting.
Also, the are no unreachable areas.
Also a mention, that, some may don't like the angel wings, but still I think, that there are more who do, and anyway till anybody reaches it, it's already the end of the map.

The make a long story short, the map can be posted.
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Postby ByteBandit » Jan 18 2008, 1:50

Koni wrote:
I'm very interested, where you have got it from. I myself know (from a RT user), that there was a bugged map and I could help him with the "good" one, but also with a bug, (pink God of fire disappered without reason). For me, I made a (German texted) updated version without any bugs (and some added quests). Are you interested to examine it and eventually post it on your Archives?


Yes I am. I'm always interested in corrected and updated maps. :D

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Postby Yurian Stonebow » Jan 18 2008, 10:34

@Muszka

Thank you for the feedback. Here are some of my own 'findings' after doing some more testing on "Operation Turning point". These are thoughts that came to me as both from the map maker's point of view and that of a "regular" player.

"Operation Turning Point" is free of bugs but somehow I still see that I didn't quite get the best out of CPU players and their skills. Of course this seems to have more to do with how the AI in Heroes III is built and less on how I would like to see the AI performing on that particular map. Overall the AI manages quite well its duties in the starting positions available to it.

Each starting position is indeed unique and that is what kept bugging me for many many months. I wanted to achieve balance but still different "feel" to playing each Human available starting colour. I believe I managed to get there in the end.

"It's a pure MP map, though it can be played SP it's by far nat that enjoyable. Even more it's a very good quick-time-2vs2vs-some-AI-map.
I would have only one suggestion. You could let Blue to be Human or CPU instead of CPU, for those who can't or dislike MP with CPU to be a better SP map, but this is only a suggestion."

Including Blue Player on the map was not in my original plans but somehow slipped in during mapmaking and early testing sessions. In my opinion, (as I observed later on) overall game balance needed one more pure CPU player so I crafted Blue his own area and its limitations and advantages on the North-West corner of the Underground territory.

That area is planned and designed exclusively for CPU player and not for Human players. It's not well enough balanced for a Human/CPU starting position. I believe that giving access to that colour in terms of "regular" playing type would jeapardize Human vs Human balance. I do understand and have noticed myself as well that one additional Human starting position outside the Human teams could add to the singleplayer experience but I still chose to abondon this idea because of overall balance issues.

"I played on Impossible, so it's must be playable on other difficulties too. But if you want I may give it a try on an easier setting."

I have finished the map both on Expert and Impossible levels so my own testing supports your conclusion, Muszka.

"Also, the are no unreachable areas.
Also a mention, that, some may don't like the angel wings, but still I think, that there are more who do, and anyway till anybody reaches it, it's already the end of the map."

"Operation Turning Point" is designed to be a moderately quick map with special areas as a nice bonus for those who like doing Quests and are also
curious to explore the entire map. It seems that the map plays well with this idea: the Quests are quite reasonable and require no utterly hard work to complete them.

As for Angel Wings, that is a special feature of the map's internal design. Not excatly game killing in the hands of CPU player and as you noticed, the artefact will play its part only towards the end-game. I included the Wings on the map to help Human player to finish cleaning up remaining CPU field armies.

"The make a long story short, the map can be posted."

Thank for your comment and observations so far and please keep that feedback coming in. You can send me email or just simply reply here on CH, which ever suites you best. Don't worry about sending me "silly" posts about this and that little thing found on my maps. I appreciate all feedback I get and will reply to any message depending on my remaining free time.




Sincerally,
Yurian
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Postby Muszka » Jan 18 2008, 13:01

The blue was just a suggestion. Forget it.

The AI doesn't play so bad. I played green, with tan being the teammate. Surprisingly tan survived, and the others played well in the first month, after it they can rarely have a chance in an M sized map. So don't bother with this either.

The other ideas are good too, the questhuts, the angel wings, the grail placeing are great for an M multiplayer map, so again, the map is ready to post.
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Postby Koni » Jan 18 2008, 21:19

ByteBandit wrote:I just recieved a map today, that I've wanted for a while to post on the Archives now. The corrected and very playable Empire of the World II. We had the standard older version for the longest time, but now we have the "good" one. :) I'm stoked!


And I'm glad, that I could help you via Rob4590 and Binabik, to get it corrected! :)
And thanks for uploading the German version "Das Weltreich II".

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Postby ByteBandit » Jan 18 2008, 22:04

We are off topic here, Yurian, I hope you are'nt upset.

You're welcome Koni. And thanks for the German translated Heroes Chronicles campaigns. They are up on the Archives now as you can see. Nice stuff! :yes:

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Postby Yurian Stonebow » Jan 20 2008, 18:44

@Muszka

Thanks for the reply. As I explained earlier, I think that in the end all Human and CPU positions in "Operation Turning Point" are in order and that the overall design and the theme in which the map is set are in harmony with one another. I agree with you that the map is ready for release here in CH. I'm currently waiting replies from other testers, both here at CH and from other sites. My own map testing team pushes for some minor changes and additional plot to back up the game play.

I'll see what I can do. But I promise I will run couple of tests myself to see some of my own questions answered. I'm more concerned about AI behavior and its performance against Humans after opening phases. The AI of Heroes III is quite good, sometimes really really good beating seasoned map testers from my own team with its cunning attacks.
And that says a lot. :D


@ByteBandit


No worries there, BB. it's good to see other projects bearing fruit as well. And speaking of the MapArchives, I visited the site and saw the news about the creation of a new section of maps under my name. Thanks Steve&Pol. :)





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