(updated 10/18/03) Age of Wonders II Heaven :: World of Ultima
Age of Wonders II Heaven Julia with Gameplay background
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World of Ultima

Author File Description
TheMadMage
File Details
Ruleset: AoW: SM - TS Standard Rules
Map Size: XL
Levels: 2
Single Player?: Yes
Co-Op vs. AI?: Yes
PBEM/Hotseat?: Yes
Multiplayer Online?: Yes
# of Wizards: 8
# of players: 8
Skill Level: Advanced
Password Protected: No
Hello to everyone, these are the details of the map, the World of Ultima...

As the name suggests, it is a map inspired by the game Ultima, and the land of Britannia.
For old time gamers, and fans of Ultima such as myself, this will be a fun map that i hope
will bring back memories of those old Ultima games. I have left lots of messages and info
that make the map playable to those who know nothing about Ultima as well.

The map is mostly based off Britannia as it was during Ultima IV, and V, which were my
favourites, with some elements of Ultima's new and old thrown in as well, such as the addition
of the cities created for the Ultima Online game, like Nujelm, and Occlo, to give the players
more things to conquer. I tried to make the map as close as I could to the the map they
are currently using for Ultima Online, but there were some changes that I had to make, such as making
Jhelom the desert city instead of Trinsic, and I had to move some of the Shrines and Dungeons,
to make it more playable, though i did try keep everything in its traditional place. All the towns,
cities, dungeons, shrines are labeled as they are in Britannia, and there are many secrets to
discover.
There were a few things that could not be translated properly, such as the
custom hero/event I created for The Avatar, I used Belendor's picture, since i couldnt find a
suitable portrait, and that this is my first map ive made using the Age of Wonders editor, so
some of my messages or quests could have been achieved in better ways, im still learning
how to use this editor, so am looking forward to advice in how i can improve this map, theres
alot of things i havnt figured out how to do yet with the editor.

All in all, for anyone that loves a challenging XL map(the use of the moongates create many
tactical possibilites), with lots of story, treasure, and things to explore, this map will be
sure to do that. You can play this map solo, as anyone of the races, though i have fixed
the races, you can customize your wizards,you can play a good, neutral, or evil wizard,
if you choose the evil Undead,you will have an interesting path ahead of you, in that you can
hire many of the monsters inhabiting the dark places of Britannia, thus allowing you to become
the evil that threatens the land, or you can play it multiplayer, and see who finds the Codex of
Ultimate Wisdom, finds the Avatar, or Conquers the Underworld first, which could give that player
the advantage to win.

Feel free to message me with any comments, suggestions, questions at

TheMadMage@hotmail.com

Enjoy the map :)
AuthorComments & Reviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
cyancurve
Rating
4.6
Breakdown
Playability5.0
Balance5.0
Creativity5.0
Map Design4.0
Story/Instructions4.0
Playability: 5
(Insert Playability analysis here)

Balance: 5
(Insert Balance analysis here)

Creativity: 5
(Insert Creativity analysis here)

Map Design: 4
(Insert Map Design analysis here)

Story/Instructions: 4
(Insert Story/Instructions analysis here)

Additional Comments:
Congratulations! This is one of the best AOW:SM maps so far. I am still in the mid of the game but have been totally enjoying it. I played as tigrant and had found the avatar and eliminated the undead. The idea of looking for Avatar is the reason I gave the 5 marks on the creativity.

Suggestion: It took me too long to find the way to Avatar, lost my way once in the middle of portals. It would be good to give more instruction and events to guide the player for this cause.

Well done and I wish to see more maps from you!
TheMadMage
File Author
Thank you very much, im glad to here that you are enjoying the map as much as i enjoyed making it. In hindsight, i do agree that it is quite the journey to find the avatar, i orignally thought that perhaps instead of the moongate at the Shrine of the Codex taking you back to the central moongate location, it would gate you directly to the island where you find the avatar, but then i thought, hey, was anything every easy to find in Ultima? i remember spending hours in those dungeons, or the Underworld...should i update the map with that instead, so that when you get the clue to find the avatar, the moongate takes you directly to the island where you have to use the clue, rather than find the island on your own?
And yes, i am currently making my next map, which will have some of the same themes/styles ive used in this map....so watch out for The Mad Mage :)
reverend
Rating
4.4
Breakdown
Playability4.0
Balance4.0
Creativity4.0
Map Design5.0
Story/Instructions5.0
Playability: 4
Especially good for Ultima-veterans. The dungeons are quite challenging, but the map could use more independents roaming the countryside.


Balance: 4
Since this is the map of Britannia from the actual Ultima-games, not all starting positions are equal. This isn't necessarily a bad thing and may provide a good challenge.


Creativity: 4
Map Design: 5
While not an original map, it is very detailed with signs that point to important "historical" places. The story about finding the Avatar is nicely done, and good use has been made of the different terrain-tiles.
Customized wizards and heroes ( rulers and "celebrities" from the Ultima-series ) would have been even better.


Story/Instructions: 5
Starting messages for each wizard, events that tell you important information about the moongate, a quest for a lost hero... what else can you ask of a map?

Additional Comments:
Can't wait for the next version of this map or a new map. How about something from UltimaUnderworld?
TheMadMage
File Author
thxs for review...in regards to the balance of the starting positions, i did try to keep it all equal, in that each wizard has access to resources, nodes, treasure, things to conquer/explore, space to build. what starting positions do you think need improving?
or at a disadvantage?
i did consider customizing the heroes, so that you can meet iolo, dupre, janna, and all the other characters from ultima, but i really couldnt find suitable portraits, or reason for them to join the foreign wizards who are now conquering britannia. it would also put the player who played the evil or neutral wizards at a disadvantage, in that i wouldnt want the virtous heroes of Lord British join them, so they wouldnt have access to these heroes.
i also thought about making some custom items, such as the candle love, the book of truth, bell of courage, but couldnt find suitable pictures/enchantments for them. any ideas?
i would like very much to add as much custom events or
celebreties to the map as possible, though i have to admit, i went completely on memory for this map, so would be happy if anyone can suggest some things/people i could include in the map to make it more nostalgic, like i thought it would be interesting to meet chuckles, or i wanted to recreate suteks laboratory on an island, but the only icon i could relate it to was a necromancer, but that wouldnt be right either, so if anyone can think of
anything to add, let me know :)
reverend the draconians for example have a strong position, being island-based. they can explore the dungeons without being attacked early in the game. like i said, the balance is as good as can be, and choosing a race with a "better" or "worse" starting position adds to the replay factor.

if you include the heroes from ultima, why not include the villains as well? blackthorn, the guardian, etc. i'm sure there are enough. there are a few links in the forum that point to large collections of portraits, there should be something fitting in there.

items: a few that spring to my mind: the glass-swords from u7, a few magical weapons from u8 ( that mace that had lightning come down on your opponent when you kill him -> lightning strike? ), from uw maybe blackrock swords etc. there are plenty of magical weapons. and if that's not enough, uo may not have "named" weapons, but is a good source for common items.
TheMadMage
File Author
Hello Reverend...
I did play the Draconions once, and noticed that they could quickly control all the islands by air, but there is always the moongate, which makes any starting position vunerable if you dont protect it, and i noticed the the tigrans can make quite a presense with their manticores flying around, so its tough to say if the draconions have that much advantage, especially since the AI does not know how to use boats, and being neutral, its harder to make allies.
Yes, i did think it would be interesting to create blackthorn's castle, i think it was just to the west of the Isle of the Avatar, and maybe allow the wizard who plays the evil undead to join up with him, suggesting he has contacted the evil shadowlords, like in Ultima V, but im not sure if blackthorn would really be considered a "hero", in that he was more a ruler/wizard himself. and the gaurdian was also more a ruler, and part of the more disliked later Ultima's so im not sure i would include him, if you think adding Blackthorns Castle as an event would be interesting though, giving hints to the presence of the Shadowlords, then i could easily make that up and update the map, let me know.
about the custom portraits, the only site i know of that has custom hero portraits is the mapguild site, and i browsed their pics, and couldnt find anything suitable, do you know any other sites that have hero portraits? or a good place i could find images?
what sort of abilities do you think the blackrock sword, or glass sword would have? i guess death strike could be one for the glass sword, since it was what the glass sword could do in ultima....

[Edited on 10/24/03 @ 02:07 PM]

reverend mapguild is a good place for portraits. Another one is http://nwn.unforgottenrealms.net/portraits.php though you have to convert the pics to the right format.

Blackrock Sword: Since Blackrock blocks magic, maybe steal enchantment? You can assign non-attack abilities to attack items. (Switch to use, select ability, switch to attack)

Glass Sword is more difficult, because there is no one-use-only ability in AoW. Maybe magic strike or slaying?
camelrider
Rating
4.0
Breakdown
Playability4.0
Balance5.0
Creativity3.0
Map Design3.0
Story/Instructions5.0
Playability: 4
I have, to be honest not played through the whole scenario yet. But I do appreciate the messages and instructions. I also found a pretty flow in the early stages of the game, as I could expand without trouble and still didn't have a too powerful fortress. I had done the map I had made the starting position even less powerful. (I began as the archons).
(And I'd actually like to be able to choose race, I mean, if I start out with ze demonz in a "paladin town" it is I who messed up the story, not you - so what damage could it do?)

Balance: 3
For me to give a good balance rating, the map has to be unbalanced, enabling and increasing the importance of diplomacy and other tactics. I believe though that i'd like to try this one in MP first, which I will!

Creativity: 3
It is not creative to replicate a map from an existing game. But that was the first I did (World of Xeen, here on the site) when I began making scenarios, and it is fun and usually brings about an interesting scenario. Perhaps one could throw in more of what makes Ultima a loved game?

Map Design: 3
Here is the only thing I didn't really like. While most things were pretty, looked good or felt thematic, I found too much "empty" ground. Ground which is naked, even if there's trees on it, do crush the immersion level down a bit - to the point where it sometimes feels like a boardgame.
But apart from the naked ground, everything looked fine!

Story/Instructions: 5
(Insert Story/Instructions analysis here)

Additional Comments:

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Rating
4.3
Breakdown
Playability4.3
Balance4.7
Creativity4.0
Map Design4.0
Story/Instructions4.7
Statistics
Downloads:3,647
Favorites: [Who?]0
Size:187.47 KB
Added:10/17/03
Updated:10/18/03
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