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odisseus

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odisseus last won the day on June 25

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About odisseus

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  1. In Stronghold V1.41 this trick works only partially. You can command a deployed siege tower to move along the wall (but it cannot be selected with the mouse, so you'll have to assign it a number first), but no additional engineers come out, and sometimes the tower will refuse to move. On the contrary, sometimes the number of engineers that come out from a siege machine is less than needed to man that machine. I'd call that a "missing engineer trick". It seems to be related to the difficulty level. For example, when I order the crew to abandon the ram in the campaign mission 15, I get 4 engineers on Normal level, 3 on Hard and just 2 on Very Hard. When I abandon a portable shield, sometimes I get an unmanned shield and no engineers at all!
  2. These videos display good knowledge of strategy and tactics, amazing glitches and an unbelievable click rate. However, the in-game chat is absolutely the worst possible way to add subtitles. It is an agony to watch the narrator typing the words one by one, then realizing he's made a typo and pressing backspace until it's erased, not to mention the tiny size and low contrast of the letters. Please, please, start using a proper video editor like OpenShot.
  3. Your points are valid, but I think they just confirm my conclusions, or at least don't contradict them. I haven't compared the cost of hiring a pikeman against those of a swordsman, because it's not entirely clear which values to compare. Shall we compare the gold cost of hiring the unit + buying the weapon & armor? Or maybe it makes more sense to compare the resource costs of manufacturing the equipment? Shall we factor in the time needed to produce said equipment? What about the difference in costs of weapon shops? Anyway, the pikeman seems to be more cost efficient whichever way of comparison you choose. I never claimed that swordsman is the ultimate defensive unit (that title belongs to the crossbowman, but that's off topic). I just mean that the swordsmen's slowness is much less of an issue when they are protected by walls and have limited distances to move. When you mention setting enemy castles on fire, I assume this is about Stronghold Crusader, where this is indeed possible. Stronghold Crusader also has assassins, which are good at capturing gates and clearing walls of ranged units, but rather weak in melee. To counter this threat, it might make sense to put swordsman next to walls and gates or even on top of them. I have to admit my experience with Crusader is very limited, so this is just a guess. I agree that an individual swordsman is a much better fighter than a pikeman ? but this is a moot point if the swordsman dies before even reaching the enemy. In my experience, pikemen often can reach the enemy walls where an equal number of swordsmen cannot. Lastly, every player plays as he pleases, and I have neither intent nor means to forbid attacking with swordsmen. However, by knowingly choosing any unit save the most efficient one to do the job, you are purposely putting yourself at a disadvantage. You may still win by besting your opponent at economy, tactic or micromanagement, but you have imposed a handicap onto yourself, and, when matched with an equal, you would probably lose.
  4. How do you create wooden walkways on ground level? When I tried to use the common method with damaged stone stairs, everything lower than about 20 clicks above the ground just disappeared after reloading the map.
  5. There seems to be (or, more precisely, to have been a few years ago...) a discussion about swordsmen vs pikemen, so I decided to present my opinion on that matter (yea, just a tiny bit late). Many players hold that the swordsman is the strongest unit and, therefore, best suited for sieges. If I recall correctly, even the in-game manual says so. But, in fact, this is quite far from the truth, and swordsmen are next to useless in laying a siege. Sure, swordsmen have powerful attack and decent armor. But they also have a lot of disadvantages which more than offset this fact: slow vulnerable to crossbow bolts very vulnerable to fire cannot dig moats cannot climb ladders (duh) slow did I already mention that they are slow? In an open field, an archer can run in circles around the swordsman, and will eventually bring him down. So what is the best melee unit for sieges? Unsurprisingly, the pikeman it is. He is significantly faster than the swordsman, has better armor, and can dig moats. This makes him much more likely to reach the enemy walls before being reduced to scrap metal. His only disadvantage is his pathetic attack, but it isn't as crippling as it probably was intended by developers. This is because the peculiar way Stronghold 1 handles unit collision. I believe everybody has noticed by now that units take no space themselves, and theoretically there can be any number of friendly units on exactly the same spot. They will spread out when given an opportunity, but they will remain in the same spot if there's no room to spread to, or if they are attacking. The first condition also enables tower stuffing, but that's off topic. This shortcomingfeature also allows you, with the slightest amount of micro-management, to have two or three pikemen standing on the same tile and attacking the same wall block. Despite the weak attack of individual pikemen, this arrangement will tear through the walls in reasonable time. Besides, any damage by incoming arrows will be spread over a larger count of units, so each of them has a greater chance to survive. The swordsman is actually a defensive unit, and his true purpose is defending wall breaches. Groups of swordsmen are best placed where such breaches are likely to occur ? right behind the gatehouse; in the outer court, next to the most exposed stretch of wall; and on top of the keep (duh). Located in this way, they won't have to rush to the enemy, so their slowness won't be an issue, and the walls will protect them from enemy fire. They will engage the attacking troops from three sides and chop them down as quickly as they arrive. Now, it might seem that pikemen are just as suitable for that task. But, in fact, this is the sort of situation where their weak attack turns into a big weakness. If the advancing file of enemies is not dispatched quickly, they all will squeeze into a single tile and start attacking all at once. In effect, this creates a "super soldier", which will kill even the toughest opponent in one blow. Consequently, pikemen can only slow down the attack, which actually may make it stronger, unless your ranged units provide ample fire support. Meanwhile, a sufficient number of swordsmen can fend off an attack on its own.
  6. May I inquire how many entries to the competition were submitted in total?
  7. It might seem that impassable terrain is, well, impassable, and a blocked path cannot be unblocked except in map editor. Recently I have discovered that this is not always the case. Even during the game it is possible to do limited terraforming in a way that, depending on the map design, can dramatically affect the gameplay. Here are the facts that make this possible: When you place a building, the area below it and the surrounding rim about 3 tiles wide is converted to "ground" terrain; This affects passable terrains such as stones and grass, but also rocks; Rocks are commonly used by mapmakers as a lazy way to block passage. As a consequence, cheap buildings like woodcutters can be built next to rocks in order to remove them. Now, you wouldn't normally be interested in clearing defensive terrain around your own base. It would be much more useful to do this to your opponents in order to bypass their defenses. The problem is, you can't place buildings too close to the enemy. There's one exception to this rule though... the tunnel entrance. That's right, the tunneler's tunnel entrance is a building like any other; it is even listed with the buildings in the PDF manual. This means that it can be deleted or destroyed by enemy troops and, most importantly, it also converts surrounding rock terrain to ground. Since the tunnel entrance appears immediately when you order the tunneler to dig, the terraforming effect is also immediate. It doesn't even matter if the tunneler actually reaches the entrance, so you can place it right next to the enemy walls. You can place the tunnel entrance even in an inaccessible place. In this case it will immediately disappear and the tunneler won't be used up, but the terraforming effect will still happen. It works even across walls, if the wall is less than three tiles thick. To provide an example of using this technique, I've chosen a siege map called "User Created Map - Castillo de Loarre", which comes with Stronghold 1.4. The outer layer of the castle walls is almost completely surrounded by rocks, except a couple of short stretches around the gates, which are heavily defended. Further complicating the matters is the fact that you cannot build siege machines. Fig. 0. General layout of the castle and my attacking troops. For the purpose of this instruction, only tunnelers are important. Fortunately, there's a sizeable gap between the inner walls and the left edge of the outer wall. A wide band of rocks terrain makes this gap impassable... or so the mapmaker thought. Fig. 1. Close-up view of the gap not protected by walls. The spot where the passage will be created is marked with a yellow dot both on the main view and the minimap. I selected the tunnelers and ordered them to dig next to the inner edge of the rocks band. Notice how the space behind the band is still inaccessible, but some rocks have disappeared. I repeated the trick a couple more times until enough rocks were cleared. Since the last tunnel entrance became accessible, it didn't disappear; the tunneler started running towards it and got shot down by enemy archers. Too bad. Fig. 2. Progression of clearing the rocks. The passage allowed me to bypass the outer layer of the walls completely. Since the inner wall was lined by rocks too, I had to repeat the tunnel trick (in retrospect, I could save a tunneler by doing it before opening the passage). Fig. 3. Inner wall about to be torn down by pikemen. After my crossbowmen cleared the inner court, they were able to shoot at the defenders of the outer wall from the higher ground, while protected by towers and shields. Castle taken, and with far fewer casualties than a frontal assault would bring. Here are my concluding thoughts: Is this cheating? I think not. This trick doesn't exploit a programming error (like e. g. teleporting tunnelers do). This is just an unusual combination of known game features. Tunnelers are actually useful! Well, at least on some maps. Dear mapmakers, rocks are passable. Please don't be lazy; use height differences and/or boulders. The attachment contains the images linked above, in case the hosting ever takes them down. tunneler-trick.zip
  8. I might create a sequel if I think of a scenario that would be interesting of itself. Stories are easy, scenarios are harder. Besides, there is no way to force the user to play through a set of maps sequentially, like in the original campaign. If he finds mission 1 too hard or just boring, nothing prevents him from skipping straight to mission 2 or even further. That defeats the whole purpose of creating sequels or campaigns.
  9. It seems that I'm unable to PM you, or anybody else for that matter, unless you mean sending an email. On the other hand, I think it would be better if the reviewer sent me a private message whenever he finds any problem with my maps. This way there will be no unnecessary posting and I'll know the map has been reviewed.
  10. The tunnels that are dug by tunnelers cannot be used for moving troops. Their sole purpose is to protect the tunneler on his way to the enemy walls. (Also you can do limited terraforming using tunnel entrances, but that's probably an oversight by the game designers.) By the way, the tunnel entrance is a building just like any other and can be deleted. If you delete it why the tunneler is still on the surface, he will start digging at the spot where the entrance used to be, and then he'll just disappear. If you delete the entrance when the tunneler already started digging towards the walls (that is, when the land has started rising slightly), he will just continue digging and eventually undermine the wall. The secret passages described in your article are just very narrow paths obscured by high terrain. The amount of secrecy depends only on how well the mapmaker did the job of hiding them. This applies also to the entrances. Regarding the defense against tunnels, here's what I have seen on some siege-that maps. There were freestanding wall columns placed in front of the actual wall. Since the tunneler always aims for the nearest piece of wall he can reach, he will just collapse one of those columns and be thus neutralized.
  11. Is there any information available about the binary structure of maps for Stronghold 1 or Crusader, besides instructions on how to change the troops color? I'm going to try to create a program for generating map templates (custom sizes, custom starting height, perhaps even landscape from heightmap). However, I have absolutely no experience in analyzing binary files, so any relevant information could save me a lot of work.
  12. Thank you for the attention! By the way, what about the other two maps I've uploaded? They have been sitting in the waiting list for quite some time. I've just submitted an updated version of the tiny castle map. The update is very slight, but it makes it possible to win defense at very hard (mind you, not in the "wait to win" way). If you decide to publish it, please use the updated version. Anyway, neither of these two maps have any gameplay problems I know of. Both should provide a challenge, yet are winnable even at very hard difficulty.
  13. I have submitted a new version of the duel map. This time it works on all difficulties. However, I didn't feel like recreating all that eye-candy, so I made the map really small (thanks to the templates found at strongholdnation.co.uk/downloads/file/569-new-mapsizes-for-designer/). The issue with the disappearing lord seems to occur only if you place exactly 2 troops of the same kind in the map editor (e. g. 2 swordsmen, or 1 swordsman and 2 spearmen). Placing 3 troops of the same kind solved the problem. That's strange to say the least.
  14. I have tried to add a keep, but it didn't help. Looks like this is a bug in the game. Did you get the lord on any difficulty level at all? What is your version of the game? I have v1.41 from gog.com.
  15. I just checked the map again and it seems that the lord consistently fails to spawn on Normal difficulty. Somehow this problem doesn't occur on any other difficulty level, from Easy to Very hard.
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