|I Love Bananas
The playability in this scenario was as a total very nice. I very much enjoyed playing both scenarios, because they were both short though packed with things to do. In the first, I had to gather resources to fight an enemy army waiting outside the city, before I continued walking up a hill and reached the bottom of Mount Olympus. In the second scenario, I had to walk through a mountain landscape, fending off enemy units and destroying Kronos statues, before I reached Amanra. There was only one thing I disliked, though - the enemy units in the 1st map. I don't see why there should be both Pharaohs, Servants of Odin and Circes defending the mountain. If you had picked units from only one civilisation, it would have been a lot better and more realistic. And why would they suddenly appear right outside my village? Looking away from that aspect, though, it was really enjoyable.
Cinematics, however, were a bit on the bad side. You didn't use animations, only walking, which made the cinematics seem to be longer than they actually were. The cinematic presentation of the story was also a little unimaginative, since it all revolved around Arkantos and Kastor talking to each other - and the dialogs were at some times a little incoherent. That was the bad parts of the cinematic, the good parts were the nice camera tracks.
Very nice balance indeed, though, I really think that you should have chosen another solution on how to block the player from finishing the 1st scenario. It was a huge wall of different units, and I had to send many unit groups into the enemy lines to break them thoroughly. With the limited access to resources, it took a long time to get to the end. You should either have removed a few enemy units or added more gold mines outside the range of the enemy - all my gold gatherers were killed when they tried to reach a gold mine outside the walls of my town. When I had breached the wall, though, the rest was smooth sailing until the next scenario.
Else, I have no complaints on the balance, the 2nd scenario was great at such.
As usual, I take off at least one point when there are campaigns or scenarios with connection to the original ES campaign. You used Arkantos and Kastor, still as father and son, and Amanra. The ever recurring heroes. You also used the famous Mount Olympus, which seems to be used very often in TT sequels. But apart from that, I saw nothing that had too much to do with anything else, and the rest of the campaign was pretty innovative - if not a bit short, but that's no creativity countdown.
Map Design: 3
Average throughout both scenarios. You remembered any designer's first rule: terrain mixing, but it wasn't as good as it could have been. You had spread the trees around in forest groups instead of having massive forests, which always looks good, but the lack of embellishments in several places averaged that out. There was a nice variation of different nature in both scenarios, and I thought the river in the first looked pretty great. But with more work, you could have made it even more pleasing on the eyes to play your two maps. For instance, I missed rocks, grass and bushes in several places.
The story itself is not the best, it was mostly that Kastor should go up to Mount Olympus and save Amanra from rebels. It seemed partly copied from the Titans campaign, and it was a little short. If you had come up with a more extensive storyline, I'm sure the campaign could have been a lot better than it is now. The ending also surprised me; when I had one enemy unit left to kill the "You Win!" window suddenly popped up, without any notice. I think you should have added an ending, possibly with a cinematic.
Instructions were great, though - I understood what to do very easily, and you had used the objectives banner correctly - with helpful hints. The cinematics also told me what to do, so I got it verified several times. That is a good thing. Examples of your hints were that in the second scenario, you said "Send in your biggest units first". I did, and I think it helped me a lot. I still had more than half my units left after beating most of the enemy.
Overall a pretty good first production, and I look forward to seeing more of your productions. Good luck in the future.
[Edited on 12/17/06 @ 07:19 AM]