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Downloads Home » Single Player Scenarios » The Trials - Full Version

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The Trials - Full Version

Author File Description
ToMyBoY he Trials - Full Version (2.00)
Originally Published March 19, 2006
Updated September 17, 2006
SP B&D (with some RPG inspired elements)
===============================================

This version has been updated and is fully compatible with patch 1.08.

This three part scenario contains two cinematics and one map for a total of 3 hours of game play. The project is fully supported by an online walk-through web site. The web site contains lots of pictures and a story description so if you want to find out more about the project before you download, check out the site. You can also visit my Flash Bio site which contains preview movies off all my mods. Clear and concise install instructions are included in The Trials zip to insure the game runs smoothly.

Find the walkthrough web site here:

http://www.thegameexchange.org/TrialsWT.php

Find the project announcement here:

http://aoe3.heavengames.com/cgi-bin/forums/display.cgi?action=ct&f=12,28037,0,10

Here is a link to my personal Bio Flash site, which contains preview movies of this and all my other mods:

http://www.thegameexchange.org/Flash/flash2.php

The Trials Features:

1. Full difficulty setting support - Native and British are upgraded according to the difficulty setting the player chooses.
2. Buy secrets from prospectors and other locals. Some provide valuable mission information, some just rip you off.
3. Discover and purchase valuable scrolls that provide vital mission data.
4. The British unleash hot air balloon bombing attacks in an effort to drive you to your knees.
5. A local brothel has boomed up and a hooker character tries to lure your military units away from your control.
6. Game features a custom AI made by Felix Hermansson.
7. Custom skins by well-known Age designers including King Jared, Sziggi, Kastor and newcomer Moosefood.
8. New music.
9. Many modded features including new proto, home city units, the German home city, new string table, new triggers, special effects and various new textures.

===============================================

If you're having problems installing the game you can contact me by email and I will help you through it. If you follow the install notes you won't have any problems but I don't want anyone being prevented from enjoying the game due to install issues. The game has been thoroughly tested to insure trouble-free installation and play.

After playing the game, if you want to play on-line or watch replays you'll have to un-install The Trials' modded components otherwise OOS errors will occur.

If you do play and enjoy the game, please take the time to comment and rate it. Your comments and ratings help us designers a lot.

Contact: tbarak@mts.net
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AuthorComments & Reviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
ToMyBoY
File Author
I'm still confused for a couple of reasons. In your first post you indicated you saw only one scroll, no other objectives. I assume since you played the game again you're finding the other scrolls are appearing. Also not all the objectives are communicated through scrolls, taking the form of traditional objective pop-ups, so you would have seen at least some of them.

The drunk and hooker being nowhere on the map (and the gold jack pots as mentioned in your earlier post)again makes me believe the proto file was not installed. Since these characters are not in the vanilla game the proto must be installed in order for them to show up. Did you see the fisherman by the stream near the German base? Also there is a guy sweeping the trading post porch at Barter town. If you don't see any of these characters then for sure something is up. Irrespective of whether these characters didn't respond to their triggers, they still would have been seen on the map if the install was done correctly - they would have been standing around doing nothing. There is a little house north of the German base, its all by itself and easy to spot, and the drunk's position at game start is right beside it. If his triggers didn't work, you'd still see him on the map. Also the hooker is slightly north west of the drunk at game start so she should be on the map too. I've never heard of characters just disappearing off the map and a more plausible explanation is a faulty install.

I simplified the install to the best of my abilities. Since some of the modded files share folders with the vanilla content, in some cases, you couldn't just drag an entire folder without disturbing the vanilla content. You'll notice - where permitted - there were some parts of the install that were simply a matter of dragging a whole folder into the game. ES games just don't have the facility for a simple install - for instance like a special mod folder like other games. I can't blame you for your criticism on the install since I realized a game as complex as this may either scare away people, or provide for ample opportunity for mistakes.

You've been very judicious with your comments and I appreciate the words of praise and encouragement. But I cannot agree with your assessment, particularly with respect to the story. I can see how missing elements would compromise the integrity of the game, but the story is pretty much laid out in the two cines and is for all intents and purposes free-standing. I opted not to slap the players in the face with the story, making it so obvious as to suggest the player has the IQ of a Cyclops. And please don't get the idea that I think you're dim as this is clearly not the case from your writing. It's a little love story about a guy trying to reunite with his long lost lover, and I'm sure it doesn't deserve a 2/5.

You're not to blame for my frustration with this process. I worked very hard on this level and very early in the process I realized I was working in a editor that was buggy. Many of the mods contained in the level are required just to make up for elements that were taken out of the editor. You work on the thing and playtest it until you are sick of it, then problems arise that seem to be out of one's control. It's frustrating for players obviously and of course I shudder every time I hear things like "the characters aren't showing up". I've played many mods and fan levels in my time and even wrote a few reviews myself, and I have a sense of what a project with a rating of 3.4 looks like. Perhaps with missing elements the level does deserve a 3.4, but when the cylinders are clicking - and I assure you I've played the game many times fully without incident - I should think it deserves better.



ranjab The first time I played through I think I saw only one or two scrolls. Objectives did pop-up as I went on my merry way of clearing the map, but they were mostly to say 'objective completed' before I'd ever *seen* the objective. For instance, I cleared out the native docks before knowing it was an objective, so when I totalled it it said objective completed. Same for reaching 10k gold; I got 10k gold (quite easy with fishing boats and whales) and the truce came up, before I had gotten the missionary scroll. Though I didn't do it, it's also quite possible to make peace with the natives before ever going near their docks.

That was the first time through. Then I checked the walkthrough and found out there was a certain order to things, and everything -except the gold/hooker/drunk/envoy- goes according to plan. As for the fisherman and a guy sweeping the porch, I didn't notice either, and don't see them in the editor.

Your proto.xml file is in d:\program files\microsoft games\age of empires III\data\ and I verified that inside it there are indeed unit IDs for hooker and drunk, so it has to be your modified file. I see the drunk's little house and the brothel, but nobody's home, not even in the editor. And that still doesn't explain why the envoy/engineers show up but I get no pop-up choice dialogue, when I did get pop-up choices for the old coot's scrolls and the ending password.

You can drag a folder from a zip/rar onto an existing identical game folder with no problem, it won't disturb anything, except identical files that already exist and are being overwritten, which is what, four? Tell people to back up those files, and problem solved for install :)

As for my 2/5 on story, the rating is a combined 'story/instructions'. The first time I played through without getting many instuctions/objectives (until after they were completed); whether it was due to my reckless kill-all-enemies playing style or missing characters, I obviously played it against the scripted order. I had no idea (the first time) that there was an old coot somewhere I needed to find, and even though I cleared the map I didn't notice him or if I did see him he was just a guy standing there. Honestly, it's quite easy to break the flow of the story.

As for the plot itself, I did have a feeling the first time I saw the ending that Morgan wanted mortality, but it still left me a bit non-plussed. It was a bit too vague from the very start. A good author/director does indeed make things obvious to everyone, especially in a short-story.

If there was a score for spelling I'd give top marks as I noticed only one error: In the dialogue as your ship lands, it says 'vessle' and should be 'vessel' :)

Anyway, I have no clue why it's not working properly. I think overall it may be too complicated for its own good :)
Luke_Feanor
Official Reviewer
Review removed. Reasons why have been emailed to the reviewer. I don't like having to remove reviews but it's only fair that the author of any scenario recieves a fair review for the countless hours some of them put in.
ranjab So much for my first-ever review :)
ToMyBoY
File Author
Ranjab it's nothing to do with you personally and honestly I think you taking the time to DL, install and play the game, then go as far as writing a review is fantastic. I thank you for the effort and you've been an absolute gentleman with respect to our exchange. Wish more people took the time and exercised such courtesy. I've had reviews I've written removed too so don't feel like you're the first.

I think Luke is familiar with my project, and he's an experienced gamer so he has a good sense of what score a project merits. I know it's tough but it's really important that marks not only be alloted directly as a measure of the game, but it also has to be taken in context to other games out there.

People rely on the scores when they decide what to DL and play, so a low score would have almost insured this game wouldn't get played much. I hope you understand that a lot of work goes into these things - I mean months worth - so designers get pretty protective of their work. You seem like a good guy and I am sorry for any grief that was caused. And please don't get discouraged about rating projects. While of course seeing that score hurt, it was an opportunity to hear from yet another player and I am keeping all the comments and will do my best to integrate improvements in subsequent releases. I hope we can remain on amicable terms in spite.

And thanks again Luke for your diligence and for looking out for me and my work. I owe you a lot. Oh and BTW, had the offer about review staff been made say a few months ago I would have jumped all over it. I'm averaging about 70 hrs a week at work and may be starting a gaming job come June. I don't have time to game, rake my yard or even get enough sleep so I just don't have the time to spare right now. Should this change I will take you up on the offer and do my best.

[Edited on 04/26/06 @ 06:27 PM]

Luke_Feanor
Official Reviewer
Yes, please don't stop reviewing scenarios, ranjab. It's rare to see someone take the time and be as polite and courteous as you have been, plus your review style is good. =)

Getting your review removed isn't a big thing; you wouldn't believe the number I had removed for various things at AoKH in earlier days. :P

I think some of the problems that have arisen here are due to you not having seen the quality of other scenarios yet, but that happens, no problem. :-)

[Edited on 04/27/06 @ 03:04 AM]

artdezine4 I thought the game was very fun. Thanks for your time designing it.
ToMyBoY
File Author
Thank you artdezine4, your comments of encouragement and appreciation brightened my day. All the best!
sziggi Hi Tommy, I didn't get to far into all the reading but I think that this guy did check off the read only tab on the proto proporties. So the es proto is write protected.
Just a thought. Going to play this this morning been looking forward to it. Got my system all ready for it:)I've never writen a review but I will come back with some feed back. Been looking forward to play "The Trials".
ToMyBoY
File Author
Hey Szigg, that explanation makes sense and I wish I could get confirmation on what actually happened and why the units weren't showing up.

I played the game afterward and it only got hung up on the Rhea's dance. I saved it when Morgan got to the Rhea nesting grounds statue and re-loaded it. Played fine the second time. One of the little buggers refused to walk to his mark.

BTW I heard you were with us on the "thing". Good stuff!
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HGDL v0.8.0

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Rating
5.0
Breakdown
Playability5.0
Balance5.0
Creativity5.0
Map Design5.0
Story/Instructions5.0
Statistics
Downloads:28,672
Favorites: [Who?]3
Size:1.72 KB
Added:03/26/06