A random map script for AOE3: The War Chiefs
Glacier is an updated random map for Single-player or Multiplayer use, which will only work in The War Chiefs Xpack. For those familiar with the original, the only changes include: inclusion of Klamath natives, now there are 4 total native villages per map (either all Klamath or Nootka, or else one of each per side), a change in one of the 3 lighting variations - one seemed too bright, and a slight widening of the glacier for smaller player numbers.
This is a map best for 2 team play - but FFA play has been enabled. The map is rectangular, with players starting along the more distant ends of the longer dimension, which is about 50% longer than the shorter dimension (and size varies by player number). This map is slightly larger than most standard ES maps, and a bit smaller than the ES 'large' series. Players start on a mountainous highland area on opposite sides of a wide glacier. On each side is the usual amount of forest and a few herds of bighorn sheep, elk and/or caribou (and an occasional lone moose - love those new mega-sized moose!), but only one silver mine per player. There is one trade route and one or two native villages (dependant on player number) on each side of the map as well. The native villages are Klamath and/or Nootka. The only extra mines are located on a few exposed mountain tops protruding above the middle of the icefield, and these are gold mines, worth 2.5 times as much coin as the usual silver mines.
Treasues or nuggets are placed as a total of 5 per player per map - 2 of the easy ones nearby, and 3 of increased difficulty further off, plus a couple of hard nuggets on the glacial mountain tops.
In my testing this map produces extremely fair, balanced maps for 2 team play. Gameplay differs in that it is harder to forward-build than usual due to the presence of the glacier ice, a terrain which limits building. You either have to build on the enemy's side of the map or hope to cram in a couple military buildings on the exposed mountain tops - and it is not always possible on every mountain top to build up the size of forward base you might be used to. Because of the limited mines on each side, control of the glacial gold mines is crucial. Most players will 'tower' these resources as soon as they can afford to.
To play this map, the two files (Glacier TWC.xs and Glacier TWC.xml) must be placed in the folder: My Documents\My Games\Age of Empires 3\RM2 (not the RM folder for the original version). Please do not place them in the game's install folder - that will not work. When you start up a skirmish game in Single-player or Multiplayer, use the small blue 'Custom Map' button, which allows you to then select one of the random maps in that My Games folder from the drop-down window. The files will transfer in Multiplayer if your allies or opponents have not downloaded the files. Please do not edit the files or you will have compatability problems in Multiplayer.