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AoW2/SM Play By Email (Turn Logs)
Moderated by Timelord, Enginerd, Ziggurat Mason

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Topic Subject: The 2009 Singles Tournament News Station (TNS)
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posted 08-06-09 09:12 AM EDT (US)   
TNS will bring you all the news and updates regarding the 2009 PBEM Singles Tournament. Next to schedule and current standings, we will also bring you interviews, previews, and game analysis! Find everything you want to know right here!

** Tournament maps
** Tournament Rules, sign up, and questions
** Round 1 poll results
** Round 1 all match results
** Round 1 Final ranking


Ladieeeees and gentlemen, welcome to Tournament News Station, your station for all news regarding the upcoming Tournament!

Feel free to send news to swolte at, and our reporter may put it on. This may be interesting in game events. If you can take a screenshot of an interesting situation, that would be great!

(Will be updated at least once a week)

Maps used for the first round:
Map1: Rocky Divide (by KillKenny)
Map2: Colors of Black and White (By Dreaming)
Map3: Mountain of the Gods (By LordDuck)

Second round (final 16)
- Blackheart and Goodfella's War (by King David)

Third round (final 8)
- The Lion, the Witch, and the Warfare (by Rheno)

Semi final (final 4)
- The Road to Hell (by Nyarlathotep)

Final (final 2)
- Too much water (by Timelord)

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

[This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 02-12-2010 @ 09:34 PM).]

posted 11-07-09 12:31 PM EDT (US)     201 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS!! It's a great day as the quarter finals have begun. We can expect the first turnlogs any moment now. On the show is Swolte, to talk about the preparation for the quarter finals, the map, as well as the rules.
Swolte, welcome to the show. Have things been going as planned?
Thank you. And yes, things are going well. We are even ahead of schedule! Initially, I estimated the turns to be sent out on Monday, however, the game between Vovy and Charx had ended even sooner than expected. Charx had emailed me it wouldn't take long anymore, but I didn't realize Vovy managed to end it that fast. Charx mustered quite the army, still! Anyway, the game between JamesEde and SMUki was to be decided by judges decision, so I had emailed them, and expected it would take at least a day or two before we could get started. But, SMUki conceded the match. This freed up some time to take a deeper look at the map.

Yes, and ladies and gentlemen, the map has been uploaded here for you to study. Can you talk a little bit about the balancing changes?
Credit goes to Timelord and Enginerd for providing most of the feedback. Initially, I made a couple of changes involving fixing some event-bugs as well as balancing up the races. At first it seemed the lion had an advantage. He starting out with a nymph, and better units in recruit/camp sites. Survivalist is often better than conqueror on a small map and Manticores are very quick and maneuvrable on a map with a big lake in the middle... The lion also is the start player.
However, Timelord correctly pointed out that path of frost may negate the Manticore strategy somewhat, and together with Enginerd showed that the advancement of the Lion is much less smooth than that of the Witch. You can see that the Lion has its units and cities very much to the back, and it takes longer to get conquering.
The changes mostly equalize the skills and units somewhat. Access to early seduce (nymph) was removed, for example.

A list of the exact changes can be found on the downloads page. So, the map was ready. What happened after that?
The normal procedure. I wanted to get the turns out yesterday, so as soon as I received the last bunch of feedback from testing, I uploaded the map. I sent the map, together with an excel file that randomizes the starting position to Chowguy and various other people. All they had to do was open the file, and push a button that will randomize the starting positions.

Who did you send it to?
Well, this is kinda tricky. Basically people with two criteria.

1) They have to have a HG account. Preferably, they should be known to the commmunity and is not a player. This has to do with accountability. The danger, obviously, is that I have a certain preferences for a Wizard and secretely tweak the randomization. To prevent such an accusation, I should be able to call upon someone who will faithfully swear they were not biased to my, or anyone's preferences. Obviously, I can't just have my girlfriend push it, and make an account. It's better to have a known community member who is independent in relation to the tournament. This time, Roger was able to help out and send it back to me this morning. For extra control, Chowguy has also been CC'd.

2) They have to have MS Excel. For some reason, the randomization script that Enginerd wrote doesn't work on all systems and versions. Also, not everyone has Excel! I was surprised about this: the last round it took me a long time to find someone who did have a version that worked. I think at least 5 different people tried.

Ok, its now Saturday, what is the deal with the timing rules?
They will be in effect on Monday. So, you have a weekend to review the changes (which were minor) and you will have to have done a turn on Tuesday. Should be enough! I hope to finish this round soon. The 80% rule become useless now, as all games will need to be finished till the end. The round will end when it ends. However, if it goes on for longer than a month, I'll try to exert some pressures...

Ok, thanks for the interview, Swolte. Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS. The next shows will feature some elaborate previews of each of the four matches with a special guest! For now, don't forget to take those screenshots and happy gaming!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-09-09 10:42 PM EDT (US)     202 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS! Today's show will feature an in depth preview of the match between Enginerd and Costa. We have asked each contestant for commentary on the upcoming matches. Before we bring out our special analyst, we will listen to what each player had to say to the following questions:

What do you think of your opponent? What are your expectations of the match?
Costa is a very well respected veteran of the game. He has done very well in previous tournaments and I expect him to be a very tough opponent who won't make mistakes. As of late he hasn't been as active on the forums as he was a year ago but I won't let that lull me into a false sense of security. He will be tough. In spite of many poll results coming back with me as the slight favorite I think of myself as a slight underdog. I can't take anything for granted and I have to play the best that I can or I will lose. Of course I will win.... at least I keep telling myself that.
My opponent is very stong, but hopefully not well prepared... I would bet on myself...
Interesting, Enginerd appears somewhat more confident when starting on this match. We'll see whether it pays off. The next question:

What do you think of the map, and are you happy with your position?
It's a fun little map, I did lots of playtesting and just as I got used to one version a slight modification was made so I had to rethink my strategy. All of that while I didn't know which side I would be playing. It's fun, allows for several different options and it will play fast as the many boats, balloons, moles/beetles will allow us to engage quickly, in spite of the terrain difficulties. I'm not sure how the end game will go... it all depends on how the battles at the front play out. Yeah, it will be fun. I prefer the side of the witch, it feels more natural to my style of play but the Lion will prevail!
I really like the map, and especially that there probably will be alot of action quite fast. I am happy to get The Witch.
It seems that Enginerd would have enjoyed the witch somewhat better, but we'll see if that turns out to be true!
The next question:

What do think of the other 3 matches. What do you expect to happen there?
Well, TL and Swolte will win. Vovy could surprise us and beat TL but I'm not expecting it, it will be exciting to see how well Vovy does against one of the best in the game. In the other game, I'm going to predict that Morgul wins. It's close and could go either way as I think they are both well matched. I just hope the turn logs are exciting (I'm sure they will be). I can't wait to see what kind of "lion" James will turn into. Yeah, it will be a great game.
I hope too see some tough matches, and that the underdogs will put up some solid fighting.
Sounds like we're in for some excitement. For now, I would like to invite our analyst to the show! The apprentice! Please take a seat, and let me start off with the first question for you. What do we actually know about Enginerd as a player? Does he have a history of competitive play?

Enginerd has an extensive history as a competitive player and has shown he can study the game to death. However most if not all of his accolades have come in the AoW1 arena. We’ll take you back in time and tell you that Enginerd was back to back champions of the AoW1 monthly challenges in 2003 and 2004. That’s where a new map was made every month and you had to complete it faster than everyone else. This shows his ability to find the unique ways to quickly overrun a map. Add this strategic thought to his 1v1 experience and you will see one of the greatest Wizard Ladder champs of all time. He played in nearly 80 WL games and was 4 time wizard ladder champion. He defended his crown well over 30 times and even went 17 wins in a row once. Yes, Enginerd has played in many competitive games and is a threat. However, that was in a very different arena, this is Shadow Magic and Enginerd has yet to make his mark here. He is an aggressive player, taking risks and pushing his opponents to their limits. He can overextend himself but will fight to the death and keep trying to find a way back into a game. His weakness…. He hasn’t played enough 1v1 Shadow Magic games against top players to push him to that next level. That inexperience may be his undoing. The last year he’s played in more SM games and this tourney is certainly pushing him to be a better player.
What about Costa. What do we know about him?
Well, Costa is a great player and has been playing for many years. If we go back just over a year ago we will see Costa performing at the best we’ve seen from him. The tourney had 40 players and in the early round Costa wiped out the competition winning 4 in a row, and he beat JWorth to come out ahead in that group. How many players can say they’ve beaten a former Champ! After winning a couple more games (and they weren’t easy) he made it to the finals where… he met Swolte and lost in a great match. Great players were in that tourney that we haven’t seen around much and Costa came in 2nd. Wow! So Costa is no stranger to competitive play. He has beaten other great players like Evil Roc. He has also been beaten by some of the greats. Lately, he has not been seen to play in as many games but don’t let that fool you. He is just as skilled as ever.
Do these players have different styles of play?
First we’ll look at Costa and his games to get here. He played two weaker players and then faced Torso in the first round. In the 2nd round he won by disqualification. So when we look at that he really only had one challenge and that was Torso. He’s played well and hasn’t made mistakes and that helped him win the game against Torso. His knowledge of the game and ability to capitalize on other’s mistakes is a strong weapon in his arsenal. He is definitely a solid player.

Now for Enginerd, he had a very easy first round, playing 3 newbies and one of those ended in a disqualification. Not much to say about these games as newbie mistakes lost the games for those opponents (or strong aggressive play won it). In a very detailed analysis we got to see Enginerd’s style against Pawel. This was a great game and we see that Enginerd plays an aggressive style and is not afraid to take risks. He calculates and looks several days out, what may appear to be a small move on day 2 may turn into a very interesting development on day 5 or 6. We don’t know how much preparation Costa put into this match but we know that Enginerd has studied both sides intimately.
What type of match can we expect? And, who will win?
We can expect fireworks! I do not see this game going into a long and drawn out game. They will both rush to expand their spheres of influence and build up their capital. They will meet in the middle somewhere and there will be big battles. We know they both will be aggressive. The victor may well be the one who hasn’t lost key units early and takes the advantage at the first conflict. After these big battles one will then have to fight their way to the far corner while the defender is building up his forces. A second wave of battles will then take place before victory. If the defender can repel that attack, well, then it could turn into a long game. The polls predict Enginerd will win in a very close and hard fought contest. One thing for sure, we will get a very detailed analysis of the game when it is over.
Thank you so much for appearing on the show! Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today. We will bring you the other previews as soon as they drop in!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-11-09 09:51 AM EDT (US)     203 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS, your station for all tournament news! Today's show will feature the second preview in the series. We will discuss the match between LordDuck and Swolte. LordDuck is playing the Lion, whereas Swolte is playing the Witch.

Before we bring out our analyst, we will listen to the answers the players had to the following questions:
What do you think of your opponent? What are your expectations of the match?
I think Swolte will win, but we'll see what happens. Perhaps he kills himself before I do
Well, as I said before in an interview, I don't know LordDuck that well. He hasn't impressed me that much in the former rounds, except for beating Cranberry. Cranberry was a new player and could have been lucky to go as far as he did. So, yes, if I had to bet money on someone, it would be myself. I'll try not to underestimate him but its hard... I don't actually enjoy competetive play as much, so I am going to take this one easy, and not take too much risks. If I make it to the next round, it will be very tough.
So, it seems Swolte is quite confident of a victory here. Trying not to make a mistake, and LordDuck did show some insecurity, there. But we'll see, perhaps there is an upset in the making!

The next question for both players:
What do you think of the map, and are you happy with your position?
I actually wanted the Lion. I always have these subconscious preferences for Wizard, and I don't really know why. I do think the maps are balanced ok, though, so it's not that. Perhaps I don't like being a witch. I'll just have to get into the character more, I guess.
I really like the map. It is a recipe for quick contact and there are multiple good strategies possible. It can also play rather fast so we may see some action soon!
Map looks great and interesting. Not much recruitment structures/recruiters available, so towns will be more important I think. Lion and witch seem to be equal, so I'm happy with my position.
The next question:
What do think of the other 3 matches. What do you expect to happen there?
Well, the match between Vovy and TL will be my favourite to follow (if they have some nice logs), for sure. The favourite is Timelord, but we must not forget that Vovy has been undefeated throughout this entire tournament! Especially the match against Charx was a real test. If Timelord makes a mistake, it could get very interesting. If TL gets to play his game, I do fear Vovy doesn't have much of a chance... He needs a bit of luck.
JamesEde and Morgul666 can go either way. I must say, I have been impressed by some of JamesEde's comments and preparation which show some strong insights. I may have underestimated him somewhat. Morgul666 is not really a competitive player in my books, more a brilliant mapmaker, but he is learning so fast, really fast! My money is still on JamesEde, though.
Enginerd and Costa will go to Enginerd. The reason is simple, Costa has been out of it for too long. He may have been a bit lucky against Torso, but otherwise his opponents weren't that strong or lucky. As we see, Enginerd's dedication is enormous, and he puts a lot of thought into his game. It will be difficult for Costa to match that.
* Vovy - Timelord - Think Timelord will win this one. Vovy has proven to be a good player, but Timelord is a very good player and has more experience with PBEM.
* JamesEde - Morgul666 - Hard one. No idea.
* Enginerd - Costa - I think Enginerd will win. Costa seems to be a good player, but he didn't play for quite some time and may be rusty.
Now I would like to invite our analist to the show! Please take a seat, and let me start off with the first question for you. What do we actually know about LordDuck as a player?
LordDuck plays in a LOT of games. Just search for his name in the forums and you will see him playing a lot of friendly games, epic ones too. He spends a lot of time posting here and there on the forums and can be actively seen everywhere. He is not known as one of the elite players but anyone who can play in as many games as he does is certainly someone with great experience. Oh, and how could we forget that he also is a mapmaker, Mountain of the Gods used in the frist round was his doing. As for his play, well, LD snuck into the 2nd round as the #16 seed. He beat two newbies (one by disqualification) and then lost to a rusty veteran in TroyLocker. The two victories was enough to get him through and then he faced Cranberry who seemed to fall apart after the newbie adrenalin wore off. Look to the game with TroyLocker to see how LD will fare against top players. He played aggressive but it appears that stronger tactics and aggression paid off in the end for TroyLocker. LordDuck will have to dig deep in this match.
What about Swolte. What do we know about him?
*shakes head in disbelief* You’re joking right? I think we all know about Swolte…. Seraph… Champion… knows the game inside and out, just look at what he did with the 1.4 Patch. Yeah, enough said. I don’t even know how I could put some flair into that.
Um, well, it was on the cuecard, so... Anyway, next question. Do these players have different styles of play?

Like most top players you see a couple common themes and that is aggression and strategy. Swolte knows this map, he has studied it and he plays aggressively and has great insight into how to utilize every unit wisely. LD will play aggressive too but probably in a more straightforward and predictable approach. Expect the unexpected from Swolte (like his moves in BH and GF), he may not act like you think and this shows his great understanding of the game. When he strikes, he will strike deep and hard.
What type of match can we expect? And, who will win?
It is not too difficult to tell what will happen in this match. Certainly we think that Swolte will be the aggressor. He will push LD back here and there, striking out where he can. LD will have to rally his forces and defend well and counter attack. Hoping that Swolte makes a mistake. Yes, I think Swolte will be the aggressor, LD will think he is being aggressive until he realizes just how aggressive Swolte is. Swolte has bounced back from his loss in the first round, maybe it knocked some sense into him thinking he could just stroll through the competition. He is focused now and not likely to get caught off guard, no matter what he says in the interviews. Expect him to be ready to fight! Swolte will win.
Thanks for coming to the show! I must say, I like your comments better than those of Flanders. Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-12-09 09:49 AM EDT (US)     204 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS! Today's show will feature an in-depth preview of the match between JamesEde and Morgul666. JamesEde will play Aslan the Lion, and Morgul666 the witch. You can follow the map here. Before we bring out our special analyst, we will listen to what each player had to say about each other and the map!

What do you think of your opponent? What are your expectations of the match?
Morgul? I think he's part of the German contingent, is he not? Never played him before, so no idea. I assume he'll be tough cuz this is round 3. Wonder if he's a rusher? Not sure if I'll win. Didn't feel too threatened by my previous opponents, but this one is more intimidating. I am however happy with the theme I've developed for my logs, trashing Aslan and the whole Narnia universe. Always hated those books, and resented the way people grouped them together with Tolkien.
as much as I loved to say something about my opponent, I fear there ain´t much to say for I hardly know James at all, we haven´t played any game together yet. But of course this has no impact on the fact that there can´t be any doubt about myself being victorious in this game
It looks like JamesEde's feelings towards the Narnia theme of the map are adding another element to this game, for sure! The next question:

What do you think of the map, and are you happy with your position?
I took a bit of time to peruse the map before starting. I worked out a plan for each side. I don't know which side i would've preferred. The map is short on recruitment structures and seducers/dominators/etc. Usually those units are my key to victory, so i guess I'll have to build my armies in cities. Of course, there ain't many of them either, so I'm expecting mixed armies of lower level units.
I checked the map in the editor yesterday mainly to figure out the purpose of that mysterious place in the shadow ... but also to check various details and came to the conclusion, that I think it´s pretty much balanced from symmetrical aspect at least. Whether it also is from strength of units/starting races is hard to say but my first impression tells me, there´s no reason to believe one wizard has a significant advantage against the other and so, yes, I´m happy with my wizard as much as I would have been with the other
And the last questions:

What do think of the other 3 matches. What do you expect to happen there?
Swolte and Timelord to defeat their opponents, don't know bout Enginerd and Costa, but in moments of doubt, I always go for the person I'm more familiar with, so I'll say Enginerd for the win, cuz I've played a game or two with him. Hey, it ain't such a bad strategy, I seem to be predicting quite well based simply on familiarity.
I expect that my Poll predictions come true and we´ll see two old masters being successful and finally meet in the semi-final which everybody has been looking forward to see (and some people even refer to it as being the real final...!)
Well, and then we also have the two matches with Swolte and Timelord () where I also think we´ll see no big surprises and the two will manage to make it into the next round (with a portion of luck maybe ) but of course their semi-final will look pale beside the Enginerd vs. Morgul match, lol
Sounds like we're in for some excitement, again! I would like to invite our analyst to the show! Please take a seat, and let me start off with the first question for you. What do we actually know about JamesEde as a player? Does he have a history of competitive play?
The first thing that comes to mind about James is his ability to write turn logs, he really seems to enjoy the role playing and getting into character this tourney. The turn logs of his games are very enjoyable to read. James has played in lots and lots of games. He is very active and plays in 1v1 and FFA’s. He is not afraid to challenge the stronger players and you can read the turn logs where he played against some strong players (Timelord, Springheel, Fubarno, Gryffone and so on). James had a fairly easy first round of play he did win all 3 matches, one by disqualification. His toughest opponent of round 1 was Albinscott and then another challenging match in Round 2 vs Zombieeater. He is no stranger to competitive play and for that the polls have been favorable for him.
What about Morgul666. What do we know about him?
Morgul is well known for mapmaking ability. He has produced some epic ones over the years, just take a look at the Demonwars single player and now multiplayer version, one cannot forget the Descent to the Undermountain. Yes, these maps are great. One thing about making maps, is you get a good feel for what units to put where to make the game enjoyable. So Morgul is well known for that creative artistic talent. He also plays in many games and is a well respected. He plays a solid game too but mostly in friendly FFAs. Like most he plays to win but does not have the same 1v1 experience as other players in the tourney. Morgul had one of the easier first rounds of play where he quickly took out three newbies (one by dq). In Round 2 he did beat Oleg (who as we remember beat Swolte), many did not expect Morgul to win this match so we cannot underestimate him. However, he just doesn’t have the same 1v1 experiences as many that are left.
Do these players have different styles of play?
Their styles may differ more from other players left in these latter rounds than from each other. They both will have some aggression and risk but they will also be prone to calculate and wait that one extra move or turn to get just the right setup. Expect strategy and troop staging to play an important role in this game. It will likely play out very differently from the other games and that will be exciting to watch (and to read )
What type of match can we expect? And, who will win?
This is one of the closer matches to call and will be a good game. Both players will likely be a day or two behind players like Timelord and Swolte with their aggression and expansion but they will both play to the traditional strengths of their side. We’ll likely see Manticores and Yetis, strong heroes and probably a game that takes a little longer for that first big conflict and finale. It has the potential to be a very interesting and strategic game as many other games this round will likely have some sort of quick first strike to tip the scale. This one may be decided on that mid-longer term strategy. So definitely one to watch, but the polls slightly favor JamesEde, his 1v1 experience and past play give him the slight edge.
Thank you so much for appearing on the show! Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today. Tomorrow we will feature the last preview between Timelord and Vovy!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-12-09 10:07 AM EDT (US)     205 / 244  
Always hated those books, and resented the way people grouped them together with Tolkien.
In some ways it is perfectly appropriate to group Narnia with Tolkien, as they came out of a challenge the two authors set for each other to write a series of books (for this Tolkien wrote LotR).


As to the tournament, not much to say. Look forward to more news on it.

urulokiurae at gmail dot com
posted 11-12-09 03:27 PM EDT (US)     206 / 244  
Come here my dear boy, hurry.

Yes master?

Now, your interviews have been… well… a bit off.

what do you mean master…

Well, for example, take a look at your evaluation of Swolte. Did you forget to look into the crystal ball? How could you give him such a strong and favorable review.

I don't understand.... he's going to win easily isn't he?

Well, I have seen it all from beginning to end and I can’t tell you everything…. But the crystal ball showed Swolte and LordDuck in a terrible battle with Swolte losing his hero and mighty troops and LordDuck roaring victorious over all the slain armies. How could you NOT have put that in your review.

*shakes head in disbelief* Er.. um.. sorry master, I didn’t think it would happen. Are you sure? What about my other reviews? Master….

Details details…. we'll worry about the other reviews later. *mumbling as he walks off* Let’s go work on my movie!
posted 11-13-09 10:32 AM EDT (US)     207 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS! We have some breaking news to follow, as Swolte seems to have suffered a major defeat in his game against LordDuck after a promising start! Who could have predicted that?!! Now on to...

*whispering in background*

*GASP* Um... seems like a certain someone did. Anywayyyy, ladies and gentlemen, do check the match out, right here! It's not over yet!

More on that later! Today we will discuss the match between Vovy (The Lion) and Timelord (The Witch). You can follow the match here. We will now listen to answers the players had to the following questions:

What do you think of your opponent? What are your expectations of the match?
I heard that Timelord is the strongest gamer. Time will tell.
My initial poll predictions in the first rounds were all made against Vovy but I didn't know he was the Russian Online Ladder champion at that time. Now that I do know it (and thanks to whoever dug that piece of info up), I am expecting a tough match. I haven't seen many who can excel at both online and PBEM but I don't know yet if Vovy falls into that special minority. If one player doesn't make early strikes in this game, this can be a long game.
I still expect to win, though...if I won't bet on myself, who will?
The next question for both players:

What do you think of the map, and are you happy with your position?
Map is impressive. It nice to play in it.
The map is great and very well balanced. There were a few minor tweaks that were required and I think it plays well from both sides now.
Happy with my position? Yes. I prefer evil races any time and the Witch gets to play some of them which is an added bonus.
And the last question:
What do think of the other 3 matches. What do you expect to happen there?
Enginerd vs Costa -> I am predicting Costa will win if Enginerd doesn't make any early breakthroughs. I think Enginerd has analyzed this map well for the first few turns but I don't know if he will hold out long-term since the same happened in the earlier round too.
Lordduck vs Swolte -> Swolte, hands down. I've played a few PBEMs with LD and he is a good player but just not up to the level of Swolte - even if he is going to take this one 'easy', as he claims he is going to.
James vs Morgul -> Morgul. Its hard to say for this one since I haven't played with either of them extensively. I'm just picking Morgul for making one of my favorite maps and that too, with my favorite mod
Now I would like to invite our analist to the show! Please take a seat, and let me start off with the first question for you. What do we actually know about Vovy as a player?
Oh Vovy is one of the most interesting players in the tourney this year. He joined late as a last minute entry and no one knew anything about him. Low and behold, we find out he is a Russian Star! Claiming victory after victory in the online community. We don’t know how well his PBEM play is but so far he has been impressive. He quickly humbled Troy Locker who was impressed with his play. The other two newbies he faced didn’t stand a chance and then Charx met him in Round 2, another tough challenge. Vovy did well and was the only one we know of that managed to seduce the Titan and the Cyclops due to some luck with an item (and some very skillful tactical combat). Well, we think Vovy has shown us that can play PBEM, this match will show us just how good he is.
What about Timelord. What can you say about him?
Well, Timelord… er… um… yup. He’s good. Watch out if you have to play him. A former champ and if it weren’t for a short absence from the forums he probably would have maintained the title before Swolte grabbed it from him, so yeah, TL is a very strong player, an expert strategist and versatile and creative in his play. Watch out!
Next question. Do these players have different styles of play?
Obviously the biggest difference in their style of play will be their backgrounds and gaming experience, this is the online expert vs the pbem expert. However…. TL has also played online and rumor has it he’s no slouch over their either so there may not be much difference. They are both super-aggressive, expert at making the most of a good situation and able to force their will on their opponent.
What type of match can we expect? And, who will win?
Aggressive, fast, quick strikes, strong counter attacks, trips and traps. In many ways it will be similar to the match with Enginerd and Costa but one notch higher on the aggression and strategy scale. We won’t hear much out of the turn logs as the language makes it tough for Vovy and TL is not known to give away anything, so we won’t know for sure what is really happening until something big happens. Watch the post game analysis and you will learn something about how to play this game, it will be full of strategy and tactics that most players don’t even think about. In the end, Timelord will be victorious, he is the known quantity and the polls have chosen to stick with the proven champion. This is definitely the match to watch this round.
Thank for coming to show! Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-13-09 08:25 PM EDT (US)     208 / 244  
Special Late Breaking Update Folks! Here we are with a follow up to today's big news… that’s right…. Lord Duck and Swolte engaged in a terrible battle with over 30 armies combined… and Lord Duck was victorious. WOW, what a battle. We’ve brought in our guest analyst to help us uncover some more facts around this battle. Hello my dear little boy, what can you say about these events? What happened?

Well, let’s take a quick look at this video that will show you exactly what happened.

Wow, that was great (is it just me... or was that a bit blurry ). So if I followed the game correctly... Swolte made a big bold move with his hero and strong support troops deep into enemy territory?

That’s right, and it was a really bold move. I’m not sure many people would even try and capture the elf town and steal the runemaster and pixie from the rogue shack on the Lion’s side. And he got the runemaster on day 4 and the pixie on day 5 Wow, what a bold move.

It surely was, so what went wrong? How did Swolte lose that advantage?

Well, it seems that LordDuck had rallied just about everything he had. If you can count the 20 armies in those stacks and look at the turn logs we read that he already lost a dragon fly. Knowing what we know of the map… there can’t be too much else out there so yeah, pretty much everything LD had was thrown into this battle, including 3 great siege weapons he gained from a quest. Swolte simply overextended himself and reached out too far too fast and got his neck cut off in the process.

Amazing! Did anyone expect this would happen?

Well… actually… My Master said something about it while looking into his crystal ball… but… I didn’t really think it would happen *shakes head in disbelief*

(Hrmphh, lucky guess) Well, of course none of us saw this happening but what will happen now? The game is not over but Swolte has been struck a serious blow, what next?

Well, Swolte will have to regroup quickly. Both sides get some reinforcements on day 6 and that will now become the heart of the new forces for Swolte. We don’t know anything about the rest of his starting armies, nor do we know how well (or poorly) things have been going at home. How many of the production resources did he pick up and what did he gain from them? Yes, lots of unknowns but one thing we do know, Swolte suffered a terrible loss and now the game is firmly in the hands of Lord Duck. It is now the Lion’s game to win.

So, what must Lord Duck do in order to win, what are his next steps?

Well, not sure exactly what he is going to do but let’s take a quick look at where he is right now. He has a strong army near the recruitment site where the battle took place. He will probably want to capture the elf town. His new recruits will support the advance, the only question is where? Through the north to the orc village, to the south through the human settlements, over the waters? We don’t know how strong his capital is and if it is ready to produce manticores or beholders. We don’t know how well (or poorly) things have gone elsewhere in the map. But, we do know… that the lion now has a pair of those mighty artifacts and we’re sure that will play into his upcoming plans. Yes, the Lion is now firmly in control of this game and must press forward and finish the job that he started.

Well, thanks for the analysis and video. What a great match. Don’t miss the rest of the turn logs and all the excitement going on here. That’s your late night TNS update!
posted 11-13-09 10:23 PM EDT (US)     209 / 244  
yes, thanks to Enginerd for the video. I haven't watched yet the other one you made for your match against PawelS.
I am sure it is great, but it takes too long to load, I will give it a try at the office.

Use a password in your PBEM games, and contact the Game Password Keepers.
posted 11-14-09 04:04 AM EDT (US)     210 / 244  
great video, great detail!!
ahem, although it´s not over yet - any chance I can withdraw one of my poll predictions... ?

Author of the following maps for AOWSM:
Version 1.4: DEMONWARS II (Transcendence & Immortalis)
Version 1.3: (also playable in 1.4) Gates to another World 1.4
><-><-><- Planning replaces coincidence by error. -><-><-><-
posted 11-14-09 07:53 AM EDT (US)     211 / 244  
Great video! Exactly what the audience need to follow the game.
posted 11-15-09 12:32 PM EDT (US)     212 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS! On todays show we'll discuss tournament progress with Swolte, and of course, we'll ask him about what may be potentially one of the biggest upsets of the year! Swolte, welcome, what a thrilling quarter final it has been so far, and especially for you in your game against LordDuck! I'll just go straight to the meat... what happened?!
Greed and impatience. They are really my biggest weakness. You can basically see it reflected in the logs about Maugrim and The Witch.
The Witch and Maugrim are like two sides of me. The witch is this cold, and calculating character. This is the mindset I have when I start a game. This is also how I am usually at my best! I don't make a lot of mistakes, nor do I take unnecessary risks. For example, in the LWW (Lion Witch Warfare) game, capturing the Runemaster on day 4 was not risky. It was perhaps a bold strategy, but it carried very little risk: I had a true-seeing Spy scouting out the area beforehand, and I knew exactly what could reach Maugrim's army. In other words, up to a certain point, all the cards were in my hands.
On the other hand, we have Maugrim. This is my instinctive side, and quite fittingly, Maugrim is this wild beast. He is impatient, greedy, unpredictable, and feels invincible when things go well!
In other words, 'Maugrim' is this greedy, impatient side of me I should really try and suppress when it's not needed!

So, I am in a situation where I have all the advantage. The Elven village is mine, my hero (Maugrim) is much stronger, and I even had reinforcements coming. The seas were under my control, and most of his flying scouts have been taken out. In sum, economically, positionally, and army-wise, I had the upper hand! Now, I think taking risks is a good thing, but obviously, you should take them when the situation is dire. And that was not the case at all.

It was very tempting. My balloon could just reach Kokor's army (which had just killed off my spy). If I could win that battle, it would be game-over for the lion! I gave in to the 'beast'...
So, the Witches anger at Maugrim reflects this internal struggle in my head. The frustrating thing is that I told myself before this game that I shouldn't take much risks, arghh.
That explains why...

Yes, it clearly explains you have some issues...
- ignores - Well, it's a classic mistake, and I tend to make them in other games as well! For example, in the game against Naeco I also decided to send a single (and slightly wounded) hero, loaded with the most powerful items (!), against his Wizard when I was in a superior position. It worked out well, but two lucky enemy strikes/spell and it could have also been disastrous...
I should have really known better. Anyway, this mistake will certainly have large consequences. I think it will be a very good reminder for me in the future. If I won't make it past this round to defend my title, I will certainly be more motivated next year not to do such things!
So, what is next for that game?

I did not phantom LordDuck having his entire population within reach to attack. It was good anticipating of him to have that much forces close! The battle didn't go well at all, as you can see. His entanglers were a real pain! Courtesy to Enginerd, its for all to see on YouTube...
Obviously, I am pushed on the defensive now but it's not over yet. Clearly the pressure to win is on LordDuck now, and so far he seems to play quite solid. I am hoping he will make a similar mistake.

Ok, well, we're sure to interview LordDuck about this match next week! And we'll see how it goes! As for the tournament itself, how is that going?

The games are progressing ok, I guess. I was hoping for most games to be past day 5 by now, but that is not the case. Here are the days the games are at:

On Schedule
Game54 (LordDuck - Swolte) - day 9
Game57 (Enginerd - Costa) - day 7

Behind Schedule
Game55 (Vovy - Timelord) - day 2
Game56 (JamesEde - Morgul666) - day 4

Timelord started quite late against Vovy, but I am sure he'll catch up soon. What I enjoy the most is that the games are really nice to follow. And, as expected, the map plays very exciting!

What can we expect for the next few days...

I don't have a crystal ball, but I reckon that it would be too early for matches being won or lost. The map provides many troops for each player, and so its going to take a while to break through those. You can already see some stalemate situations appearing in games.

Ok, thanks for appearing on the show! Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

[This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 11-15-2009 @ 12:52 PM).]

posted 11-16-09 08:28 AM EDT (US)     213 / 244  
Welceme to today’s TNS Report. It has just been reported that Swolte defeated Lord Duck in one of the best comeback’s we’ve seen all tourney. You can check out the turn logs here. Now, for today’s show we’ve brought that favorite dear little boy to tell us all about the match… Welcome to the show..!?


Hmmmm, seems he’s sleeping, poor little guy must have been up all night, *whisper* psst… wake up… psst Good Morning.

Yes, Master! Sorry Master! I’ll get right on it… oh… it’s you….

Good Morning and welcome to the TNS show, it looks like you have something to show us about the game between Swolte and Lord Duck. It just ended and Swolte was victorious (congrats swolte ).

That was great! What else can you tell us?

You can read about Swolte’s comments after the match, this is what he said:
The first few days have been difficult, actually. My troops were severely wounded from the battle at the crypt. My Troll, for example, was left with only two hitpoints even after being healed. I even refrained from taking the mine as to not lose any important units that day. Furthermore, infidels appeared in the worst position and composition. My spiders were unable to take them on, and were blocked from reaching the campsite resources. In general, I was unlucky with the quest-rewards (no strong unit, or nice item), as well as production resources (had to pick War Hall and Enchanted walls both times, ugh...). I also had no useful spells to research. Actually, for the entire game I decided it was better to not research anything and just save mana for item teleportation.

Eventually, I did get lucky with the production resource at the Goblin town, which gave me a Champions guild. This would later be very important for my strategy. A side effect of the bad luck with production resources was that I decided to sell a lot. This gave me quite some cash to fund the advance.

I had debated to go south, and exploit both recruit sites near the teleport, but in the end, I decided to do the predictable thing in an unpredictable manner: go north. Key to my opening was to have the Spy make it onto the sloop by day 2. This ensured me taking his 'lights out' early on, and also set the stage for further 'informed' strategizing. This was a strong advantage and I based the rest of my strategy on that.

Soon, the spy informed me that the 'enemy' recruitment site was untouched with no sign of Kokor, so I decided to speed up things up and go for it with Maugrim's troops. I had haste on him and a snow troll, and was able to get take recruit site on day 4 quite safely with the help of the same spy and the hasted snow troll. It did involved a semi-big battle where Maugrim had to take care of a lot of indies (as the defenders from the windmill also engaged!). It went well, and Maugrim was leveling up fast. Not far from there, the Elven village was taken. Things looked good really good, especially after the enemy zephyr and dragonfly got shot down.
Meanwhile, my northern glow was diverting to the south west, capturing gold and manapieces and keeping an eye on that area...

The next part is familiar to all, so I won't spend much time on it. In sum, I got tempted into attacking Kokor but had to call off the attack. At that moment, I knew it was lost, and I immediate started to devise a new strategy. I used the mana I saved to teleport out the Crown of Leadership that was given to Maugrim. I knew this would also leave Kokor with two useless items (as he already had a sword and a shield!). Well, at least for a while...
I also immediately focused on preparing an alternative strategy which involved getting beetles very soon. Furthermore, I knew that I wasn't able to stop Kokor after my defeat, so I decided to sell (now more crucial) things in my capitol and other villages to increase my gold flow. This attracted new heroes (Naeco), and allowed me to rush production where it was most needed as well as take advantage of recruitment sites.

Obviously, after the defeat of Maugrim, things were really not looking well. I had to take risks, as there was no way I could defeat the Kings of Old, and Kokor, carrying their own as well as my mighty items in open combat.

The master plan was to sneak past the Dwarven town using hasted Naeco (with remaining items), Beetles, mammoth, and remaining cavalry, to rush to the north-west most underground gate. From there, I should be able to surprise the Lion by popping up above ground. I was going to divert attention with Miraz who appeared in the south, and with whatever I had left in the North (Bladedancer, spiders, etc...). Everything that directed things to the underground, as well as back to his capitol was undesirable. They could take my lands, if they wanted...

Both 'diversions' worked. In the north, unnecessary risks were taken and enemy troops were indeed lured in, preventing defenses from stacking up. Miraz and his cavalry proved to be much more than a diversion, and together with the northern glow, he mustered quite the army! The wyvern that was recruited was able to take Redhaven very quickly, and hold it!

Then I had to think. At some point, I figured he must have taken prince Caspian and cavalry to:
1. Go to sea and attack my capitol (which was in the process of being sold empty).
2. Go underground.
3. Go serve as capitol defense.

I feared only #2 as those troops could foresee my master ploy. However, in retrospect, LD choose for #1, and I had nothing to fear! Meanwhile, while Kokor was getting the King of Old, I could gather an offensive position in the west!

The next day the LD must have figured that behind my Wyvern came a strong and fast army. Domain was shifted from away from his capitol! He did not want to concede his planned offense on my shores, so I figured he abandoned his capitol and ran straight to the seas in order to row a boat to safety. Little did he know that he was standing right above Naeco, 2 beetles, Mammoth and cavalry that had already moved past the Dwarven village. I could have actually voided the Lion earlier with one beetle and a horseman, but that would have been risky. And, had this assassination attempt failed, he may have fled to another place. This way, the element of surprise was on my side and there was probably a larger chance of succeeding.
Things were looking good. His capitol was practically undefended! Even if Kokor and Edmund returned from the seas, both Naeco and Miraz would be able to take them on with their combined armies.
And so, the next day was easy. A lonely Lion sitting on the grass, and his entire army on my empty lands...
That’s a great comeback and story. What other post game analysis can you give us?

Well, Swolte… er… um (remember the flair, yeah, the flair)… Swolte was bold and aggressive as predicted and then he screwed up and then he kept his wits about him… and…er… um… got lucky (that didn’t have much flair…. Guess I’m too tired).

(that didn’t have much flair to it, the boy must be losing it, too much time around Flander) Oh, I see, well, can you tell us anything more?

Yeah… Enginerd and Costa have nearly 50 armies side by side and there is a big battle brewing. I gotta run and help Master make another movie, and Master's breakfast, and my lessons and... well...bye bye. *runs off as fast as he can*

Wow another big battle coming up, I can’t believe the excitement out there, we’ll bring the new news as soon as we get it, stay tuned and hope you enjoyed this special early morning TNS!
posted 11-18-09 06:53 PM EDT (US)     214 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS, your show for all things related to the 2009 tournament! On today's show we will discuss the balance of the previous map: Blackheart and Goodfella's War with Swolte.

Swolte, welcome to the show. Before we start, congratulations again on your miraculous recovery from the game against LordDuck. Things were not looking well for you when you were last on the show.
Yes, thank you. That same day I gave the interview after my disastrous battle, I played a turn and basically found out that my chances for victory were actually quite large. For example, I could confirm that the Dwarven village had not been taken, yet, and that I could provide a strong offensive even if LordDuck had strong defenses in his capitol! LordDuck told me on chat that he wasn't able to take the Dwarven village because of the early threat Maugrim posed.

Today we are going to talk about the balance in the Blackheart and Goodfella map by King David. There was some concern because we had 6 wins for Blackheart out of 8! And, in one of the games where Blackheart lost, a player killed himself. What is your response to that?!
Well, it's important to not be too convinced with statistics that are based on very low sample sizes (= 8), however, we shouldn't ignore them either. It is likely that there are balance issues in the map. Because the discrepancy seemed quite large in Blackhearts favor, we decided to ask all players for their comments on the map.

The first question was:
Suppose you have a scale that runs from -5 to +5 representing how much advantage Blackheart has. What would your score be?

GOODFELLA: -5 -4 -3 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 4 5 BLACKHEART

-5 the map is extremely unbalanced in favor Goodfella
0 the map is perfectly balanced.
5 the map is extremely unbalanced in favor of Blackheart

We have had 10 people respond out of a total of 16. Here is a histogram of all the results. On the x-axis are the scores and the y-axis shows the amount of players who gave that particular score.

Nice, so what can we conclude from this?!
Well, obviously, it says that most people did find that Blackheart had an advantage. It is interesting to see that opinions weren't very extreme: nobody scored a 4 or a 5. This means that the complaints are not too strong.

Note that it doesn't necessarily mean that Blackheart really had the advantage, but at least most people thought that Blackheart had the advantage. It is important to know why this could be.

So, what were the reasons?
Well, there were a lot of reasons, however, there was one that really jumped out. Nearly all people thought the Cyclops was too easily available for Blackheart. For seduce tactics to work safely, you need support units like entanglers, webbers, or taunters. Blackheart has a lot of Swashbucklers (taunt) available, which made it quite easy to seduce the cyclops early on.
Personally, I found the mobility of Blackheart to be a very strong advantage in my game against Naeco. I'm not sure if I could have pressured another player like that being Goodfella. Having the initiative, I find, is a huge advantage.

Here are some quotes to the question what people would change:
Goodfella needs heavy firepower as well as a fast expansion to compensate the loss. If a cyclops was spawned on the nomad recruitment site, GF needs to arrange it's domination, which needs time, because the appropriate special abilities are not available or far away. GF needs units for crowd-control to match BH's taunting pirates. Another problem is that if GF tries to arrange the cyclops domination, he cannot dig to the west or aggressively to the draconian town, because the diggers are all in the same recruitment site.
One more thing I noticed is, that in almost all games, it was Blackheart putting GF under pressure, not vice versa. Clearly due to the fact, that BH can get access to underground much faster and easier than GF can get access to surface.
This one didn't particularly address balance, but was funny:
a couple of seeing pools could be in place. it drove me crazy to know nothing about my opponents maneuvers
Hmmm, we can see from the histogram that there was one person who thought Goodfella had the advantage!? Why would that be?
Yes, that was an interesting response. The analysis that this person presented basically argued that most people who played Blackheart were also the favorites to win the match! For example, Enginerd (vs PawelS), Swolte (vs Naeco), Vovy (vs Charx), and Morgul666 (vs Oleg123) were all games where the players playing Blackheart were expected to win.
Furthermore, the most decisive factors for matches being won or lost seemed to be strategic choice.
And the following quote from this person explains some of the strong points of Goodfella that could tip the balance in his favor:
In a map where you have a dominating satyr (or two), possibly a nymph, possibly a druid to control animals the randomness of guards and the effectiveness of using those troops favors Goodfella.
It's unfortunate that we didn't get to see the game between ZombieEater and Timelord unfold naturally, as Timelord did seem to have quite an elaborate strategy for Goodfella! I would have estimated, myself, that in the long run, Goodfella would have the advantage. However, I am more of a fast player, and usually don't let games take more than 10 days if I can help it.

Regardless, of the balance issues, what did people think of the map?

Yes, King David can be proud here! The average score was an 8.5 for this map! Most people really enjoyed the way the map played, as well as the atmosphere. Here are some quotes:
without doubt my favourite map so far! a clear 9 !It has a flair (something most of the other maps lack!) and nonetheless it´s a good tourney map!
I really like it. It's fun, you have lots of options on what you can do.
To make so assymetrical yet somewhat balanced map deserves a lot of couldos
I like a lot of unique artefacts including in map.
A good map to have a 1 vs 1 on. Has a lot of strategies that can be implemented so no two games are ever the same. Interesting balance of speed vs strength - however, since speed gains the advantage first, there may be very little options for the strength to shine through.
Ok, so what is going to happen with this information?
First, we are going to use this feedback to make the maps better. We can release those 'improved' maps after the tournament. The overwhelming response was to remove the cyclops and that does indeed seem like a nice start! I am not sure whether a lot more is necessary.
Second, as an organization, we can learn from this feedback and make subsequent tournament maps even better! One lesson for the future is to watch out the control-animal, dominate, and seduce abilities. This also became clear in the Mountain of Gods map. They can really have a big influence!

Are you worried about balance complaints affecting the organization? People demanding replays, etc?
Not really, since the complaints weren't that strong. And even if they were, there is nothing we can do. To me, it's part of a tournament that sometimes you may get a Wizard you perceive as inferior to the other! Also, about 70% of the people that responded have indicated to have studied the map beforehand. This means that if they had found really strong concerns, we would have let us know beforehand. This is also a good 'extra' safeguard for a (relatively) good balancing. It's unlikely that a map is so skewed to leave players really helpless.

Ok, well, thanks for being on the show, Swolte! Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-19-09 10:34 AM EDT (US)     215 / 244  
** Breaking news!! **

Ladies and gentlemen, we have breaking news as Enginerd suffered a major defeat in the war against Costa. A video analysis of the game has already been posted, showing a huge battle between both major armies!

The end screen indicated that the Lion surrenders, so it seems this match is over. Both players have been invited for interviews to the show where, undoubtedly, we'll hear more soon!
Stay tuned!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

[This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 11-19-2009 @ 10:36 AM).]

posted 11-19-09 06:48 PM EDT (US)     216 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS. On the show, we have Enginerd and Costa who have just finished their game in a big bang. You can see the video analysis here.

Enginerd, welcome to the show. And, WOW, what a battle! So, is it really game-over for you? I don't understand, why surrender already? I mean, Swolte made this super comeback, so why don't you try?

Enginerd Thanks, it’s a pleasure to be here. Well, this game is different, Swolte lost many armies but he didn’t lose 30 of his armies, he still had a hero and some strong armies in different places, he just lost his mighty hero and dozen or so good troops. I lost 30 armies, a bunch of items that will allow the King/Queens of old to be recruited. I gathered nearly all of my troops to the battlefront. Costa is now in a vastly superior position, his hero led stack will be in my capital in 2-3 days and I won’t be able to outnumber him when he shows up. Besides…. I need the time to make a few more videos and playtest the next map, you know… all this behind the scenes tourney stuff.
I see, well, tell us about the game and your strategy, what worked well and what went wrong?

Enginerd I had what I think is a pretty aggressive expansion strategy. I quickly captured a lot of key resources and structures early on, I was expanding well, my hero was leveling up and except for losing my ranger things couldn’t have been better. However in hindsight I see that even with a strong expansion policy I never connected it with a strong invasion strategy. When you look at what Swolte did and even what Costa did there were things that were passed by so that troops could get to the front quickly. I probably should have planned on arriving at the orc town/recruitment site 1-2 days earlier in lieu of capturing that extra prod resource. Because Costa got there first with more armies I had to backtrack, I would have preferred doing that to him instead. The battle of the city wasn’t that risky, in various playtests I came out ahead with as many armies surviving as what actually happened with Costas troops. I knew the odds were close to 50:50 and probably not heavy one way or the other. Had I won the battle I had a slinger in the shadow land ready to recruit a couple heroes. Costa still had one hero with the horsemen but I would have been in a strong position to win. I still had a mole, beholder and other troops in the homeland with more troops out there. So this battle did decide the game and I choose to not wait as I thought waiting gave the advantage to Costa. I attacked, I lost, tough break. I congratulate Costa, he didn’t make any real mistakes, he didn’t lose any of those starting troops, he was cool and composed and played a smart game. He deserves the victory.
Thanks for that analysis. We'll go to winner now. Costa, congratulations with your victory! Could you tell us about the match from your perspective? Did you think your opening strategy worked out?

Costa Thanks alot! It was a tough one, so I am real happy to be the winner.
My strategy was kind of straight forward. No special tricks. I expected to meet Enginerd's troops around the elf town, and I wanted to be as strong as possible when I did. I sent therefore almost all I had up north. To get all the troops there in time I had to skip several targets/resources. In the I was the winner, so I suppose that means that the strategy worked out...
Enginerd waited quite a while before he posted the results from his crucial turn. You have left a lot of your armies sitting in that village. Were you anxious for an attack from him?

Costa I expected him to attack sooner or later. I was not very afraid of it, but a bit stressed I must admit...I wanted him to be the attacker instead of me. In these big battles I feel that it is a big advantage to be the defender, and I also had many ranged attackers. I am also a big fan of dark gift, and many of my melee fighters were enchanted. Death strike may have been a crucial factor in the battle.
Enginerd, so… you’re out of the tourney now, how do you feel about that?

Enginerd Obviously I’m sad, I think I had a strong chance to beat either James or Morgul and then I think I would have lost in the final. I see Costa making it to the finals (again) and maybe I’ll cheer for him so I can say I got beat by the champ! I’ll be back next time and I’ll be actively watching and helping with the tourney until it ends. I’ve been having way too much fun with all the extra stuff to just bow out now.
Costa, what are your expectations for the coming matches? Are you looking forward to a match against James or Morgul666? And, if you manage to defeat any of them, who do you hope to meet in the final?

Costa I really look forward to the next round. Road to Hell is a map I like very much, and it has many possible strategies. I have never played against James or Morgul, so I have no preferences. If I get to the final it will be a big challenge, and I hope I will have enough time to prepare for it. I actually would like to meet Swolte to make up for last time...
That would be a great finale. Well, gentlemen, thank you for being on the show. And to our viewers I would like to say, have a great day and tune in regularly for more news regarding this exciting tournament! Big battles loom for all matches.

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

[This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 11-19-2009 @ 06:49 PM).]

posted 11-21-09 10:38 AM EDT (US)     217 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, the tournament today starts exciting as it seems Morgul666 has to bow to down to JamesEde. Morgul666's cities are falling, one by one... Check out the match here! It seems like it is ending soon!

The other game between Vovy and Timelord is heating up. The first big battle has been decided in favor of Vovy. The favourite to win the tournament, Timelord, is in trouble! We sincerely hope both contestants are taking screenshots...

Check it all out here!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-21-09 02:20 PM EDT (US)     218 / 244  
Looks like in the finale we'll see one former champion against one underdog (though with a serious bite).

Thanks costa, that comment made this mapmaker rookie very happy!

Well, good luck to you all (especially jamesede with your excquisite logs - Yes, I want to read as much as possible from you)and don't gamble too much, it's bad for all of you,
Mm okay?

Proud mapmaker for the UPatch team
One gas to rule them all, One gas to find them
One gas to bring them all and with the Spice we bind them
Creator of the following maps: RenaissanceEarth, RoadToHell, YeOfLittleFaith, FrostbiteDelirium, Stormy Seas
Co-creator for: CityDwellers
together with TravisII

[This message has been edited by nyarlathotep (edited 11-21-2009 @ 02:24 PM).]

posted 11-22-09 10:52 AM EDT (US)     219 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS! We'll look back on the past week with Swolte, who will also have an important organizational announcement. Enginerd has made an amazing video of the game, if you haven't seen it yet, go check it out here!. It also includes comments from the players.
Ok, Swolte, welcome to the show! Before we start, you must have seen that Timelord, as expected, defeated Vovy, and that it is now definite that Timelord will be your opponent!
Thank you, its good to be here. I expected Timelord to beat Vovy and meet him in the semi final. Although, I admit I was silently hoping for Vovy to make some big news and beat timelord. But Timelord didn't make mistakes, at least, not where it mattererd...
As for meeting Timelord, I think The Road to Hell is a fitting title for a map right before the final. Games have been going easy for Timelord, so far.
Yes, Ok, well, I am sure there will be more elaborate previews coming up! So, let's continue with our weekly progress reports. How are things going?
Well, progress has been excellent. All games have finished except for the game between JamesEde and Morgul666. That game, however, seems to be on the verge of ending. It looks like we are good to go with the semi-finals the coming week.

I think this speedy progression is due to two factors:
First, the map by Rheno has been an ideal tournament map. I think that we should keep this type of map in mind for the mapmaking tournament, and study it. It is fast, has great atmosphere, and allows for a lot of strategy. So far, games have ended around day 10.
Second, we probably have a selection bias in that a lot of the slow players have been weeded out in previous rounds. We are left with a small group of players, who know how to play very effectively and aggressively. This had players go at each others throats quite early!

You had an announcement to make.
Yes, from now on Enginerd will be in charge of the tournament organization.

Wow, that's quite a change!
Not too much. We have been working well together so far. Since I have made it into the semi-finals where the stakes are high, I feel it's a bit sensitive making all end decisions regarding balance changes to the map. I'd rather not get the accusation of making a map more to my style of playing. Enginerd is now freed up of the burden of playing and Moreover, I can probably use the extra time to beat Timelord.

Has work on the map begun?
Yes, Enginerd has already started implementing some changes. Most of them will tone down the exploits made possible by the dominate items. I think they're even debating to get rid of them completely. Enginerd can tell you the details.

Good, we shall surely have him on the show to tell us more! Swolte, thanks for appearing on the show! Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today. In the next week, you can expect an interview with Enginerd, as well as more elaborate previews of each of the matches with our analyst. We are also planning an interview with the mapmaker of the Road to Hell: Nya...alapo... arlat... tho... pep TEP!!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

[This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 11-22-2009 @ 10:57 AM).]

posted 11-25-09 09:32 AM EDT (US)     220 / 244  

Flander, the greatest wizard in the Enioch

Cut! Cut! Cut! Can’t you read? That should be, “Flander from Enioch, the greatest wizard in the Universe” Come come, let’s try it again.

Sorry about that, er… um, ok…. Flander, from Enioch, the greatest wizard in the universe and I’m a Moooooooose

*shakes head in disbelief* (Uh-oh… I see the bog coming, oh no… I’m too late.)


OK, let’s see who is going to try out next? Ah…. Swolte…

Swolte *standing there laughing hysterically*


Swolte *still laughing* I can’t believe I won *laughing continues*

er, um… Master? I think he’s still in some kind of weird shock about his most recent game with Lord Duck, it seems to have gone to his head.

Cut! Next!

enginerd *sobbing* Arghhhh *continues to cry*

Action!.... Come on… Action! Hey, what’s wrong with him…

Oh, he just lost his match to Costa, you know, one of those classic big battles where both sides have committed everything, and could have gone either way.

Hrmph… that will teach him to take credit for my videos. Over 800 vies and he wants credit for them... sheesh. He should have asked me, I would have told him not to attack, No... I wouldn't have. hehehehehehe. Next!

I’m the tourney organizer

Not bad, that’s just how I would have said it

(hmmmm. That looks like Swolte but I thought Enginerd was the organizer now....)

No, really, I AM the tourney organizer

Go on… (this guy might have what it takes)

*whispering* Master, you forgot to say Action

Shhhhh…. Details… details…

I thought I was supposed to make an announcement, what is this, what’s going on?

(Yes, he has a temper, I like that, but he’s strayed from the script, he was supposed to summon a fireball…. Hmmmm… well… he might work out.) Can you summon a fireball?


Yes, it’s easy, just like this

No Master, don’t…. *shakes head in disbelief*

… oops…. Cut! (that probably hurt, poor chap) Next!

Master, I think we should clean up the mess first. Ooops, I mean, Master, I think “I” should clean up the mess first.

Hrpmph… well… ok (walks off mumbling to himself)… I guess I’ll just have to be director and star in the movie, yes… yes indeed.

Sorry about that, are you ok?

Er… um… What happened?

Well, the fireball splashed into the bog right next to you and then there was this explosion, and the mud splattered up all over you, and then the fireball died out… and… er… um… you really stink. But you’re alive. Good thing you got splattered with all the mud first otherwise you would have been toast (hehehehehe), now… you smell worse than that moose (hehehehehe), and you look (hehehehehe) like my brother after he got caught that one time trying to steal a pie from butcher’s wife and ended up in a vat of… well… lots of stuff. He smelled for a week…. This is worse (hehehehehehehe)

Arghhhh…. I was supposed to make an announcement about the tourney.

Yeah, did it have something to do with Swolte winning his match?

ow… OUCH! Stop that….

Maybe it had something to do with that big battle between Enginerd and Costa. Or maybe about Timelord’s win…. That’s all quite old news now.

Ooooooo….. (groaning in pain)

Or maybe it had something to do with the last match with James and Morgul… or the map for the next round… or the poll predictions… or…

Stop that! *sniff* what’s that smell? It’s terrible

(hehehehehehe) Oh, that’s just you, don’t worry, this special salve I’m putting on you will help it out but you’ll stink for about a week.

(Arghhhh, that stuff stinks!) I gotta go clean up, I’ll just make my announcement about the Road to Hell map another day….. *walks off*
posted 11-27-09 09:49 AM EDT (US)     221 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS! On today's show, we will have the new tournament organizer, Enginerd!

Enginerd, welcome to the show! How do you feel about taking over the organization? Has it been challenging so far?

Enginerd Oh, it's no big deal really. I've been helping out nearly from the start and the hardest part of the tourney is over. 45 games in round 1, YIKES! There are only 3 games left to start and one being played right now so there isn't as much to keep track of... and it's not like Swolte is going to be far away.... he's just trying to concentrate on winning :-p
Yes, although, I did hear reports of him sighted at beach resorts, speaking to Lizards... oh well.
How is the balancing for the map for the next round going? What is the procedure?

Enginerd Balancing is going quite well, it's a fairly symmetrical map which makes many aspects easy, however this map has some.... interesting nuances that make it tricky. The procedure I use for balancing is first I just play it, from both sides after a really quick look in the editor, get a feel for things. I don't want to totally redo the map, I want to stick with the original author's intent as much as possible. Then I start to really dive into the editor, looking at all the structures, events, guards and what can I do to exploit the map. In talking with Nyarlothotep he was surprised during one playtest where I finished the map in 10 days where his best was closer to 25 days so yeah, I look for exploits, unfair ones especially with random guards. I start to make a list of things that don't "feel" right. In the end I want to convince myself that I can win playing either side. I don't want to change too much as it's not my map but there are just certain things that must be addressed to level the playing field.
What are the changes made so far, and what type of changes are still under debate?

Enginerd Well.. some of the minor balance things are easy. For example, the starting heroes have different abilities and need to be leveled a bit. Also, the starting skills don't make much sense (scholar vs channeler). Starting spheres will likely be made the same. A few AI blocks here and there on recruitment sites. But the biggest change on this map is going to be how to deal with the dominate item. The debate continues about whether or not to even have it and right now the dominate item is in but we're going to seriously tone down the impact (if that's really possible). I'm going to get rid of those combo units that really strengthen the dominating ability (eliminating webbers/entanglers). For example, we'll be replacing the starting spider guard with a hell hound. Also going to make it much harder to get your hands on the drain will ability (that necromancer in the critter den has got to go). You'll have to work hard if you want to build a necromancer and steal an abomination from the orc town, you won't find them wandering around either or showing up as random guards or recruitable. So lots of small changes to guards and recruitables. We haven't had a map where the dominate/seduce ability was really prevalant, in fact we've tried to remove it from earlier maps, this one will be different...... unless... I change my mind and then eliminate the item.
When do you expect to start the semi finals?

Enginerd Right now we're waiting on the game with James and Morgul to finish up. It sounds like James is in control, except for maybe a last ditch effort by Morgul, I expect that game will end soon and the next matches will hopefully start within a week after that. I'm hoping to have the changes to the map finalized before the weekend is out and then we can get started by the end of that first week in December.
That sounds good! And, good luck with the organization, I am sure things will get even busier once the game between Morgul666 and JamesEde ends.
Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-27-09 06:56 PM EDT (US)     222 / 244  
***** Breaking news ******

Ladies and gentlemen, breaking news as the game between Morgul666 and JamesEde has finished, in JamesEde's favor! It seemed there was a lot of action behind the scenes. Both players have provided some very telling post-analyses!!
Check it out here!!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 11-29-09 03:10 PM EDT (US)     223 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS! The quarter finals have ended and we are left with the final four contestants: Timelord, Swolte, JamesEde, and Costa. Things are serious now, and the pressure on the organization increases.

On today's show we will look back at the quarter finals, and forward to the semi-finals with Enginerd.
Enginerd, welcome to the show and congratulations on ending the quarter finals! From an organizational point of view, how do you look back on these quarter finals?

Enginerd I think the Quarter Finals were great. Looking at the organizational side of things we had 4 good games that brought a lot of excitement. That is always good for at tourney. I think the Costa/Enginerd match was well watched with two fairly even competitors and then Swolte and LordDuck took the limelight when that game became the most exciting one to watch when it was expected to not be exciting. Vovy and Timelord did not upset us either, with some great play and strategy and really sneaky attacks. James and Morgul, gotta love those turn logs, I was anxiously waiting for each one. Yes, we had 4 great games and I think all the forummers that were watching enjoyed the quarter finals. We also had a chance to try out some more videos and that piece is getting better refined, although hits aren't as high as the first videos, I think it is a good addtion to see some really in depth analysis of the games. There were a few tips exposed to players that were watching, it's always great when you can learn something from a stronger player. So yeah, from an organization standpoint I think the Quarter Finals were Awesome!
Has the LWW map performed well, do you think?

Enginerd I think the LWW map performed very well. There was great debate early on about some of the balancing issues and I think it is safe to say that in the end each side had a chance to win this game. We saw many similar strategic plans (the quick rush and battles in the NW) but they were all played out differently. I got to see all kinds of screenshots that didn't make the final cut of the video so I saw more detail on the strategies, it truly was interesting the way the games all played out differently. Yeah, it was a fun little map.
Looking forward, how is the preparation for the semi finals going? What is the timeline?

Enginerd Semi Finals will start soon... I mean really SOON. If all goes according to plan the race selections will be made today/tomorrow as the final map version is set and will soon be uploaded. So the timeline is to get the first turns and turnlogs created by Tuesday, giving players the rest of this week and through the weekend to play their first turn and we'll start the time limit restrictions in a week. So, yeah... moving forward quickly. We want to keep the momentum going. This next map is likely to take longer to play but we've got fast players that will likely play 1 turn/day so if the game lasts 20 days then we could be done before Christmas, may take a little longer.
To get a bit more detail on the Road to Hell map. What are some of the largest changes made so far and your motivation for them?

Enginerd This is a very symmetrical map and it has some interesting things about it. There is a special victory condition with very TOUGH guards to beat in the center of the map. There are lots of terrain boundaries with no direct path to get here or there. There are lots of mighty troops to recruit and defeat, both ground troops and flyers. There are LOTS of paths to victory in this one so we won't know what the two players will decide to do. One of the biggest challenges with this map was with that dreaded dominate item. The dominate ability (and to a lesser extent the seduce and trap) can be exploited and kind of creates a snowball effect. You dominate one great troop early on that propels you to victory. For example, the mapmaker figured it would take 25 days to win this map in his playtests. I dominated that spider, then got a bone dragon guarding the magic node, dominated him and now on day 2 I've got a powerful flyer that can go over the mountains and cause mischief... ending the game on about day 10. Big difference. So dealing with the dominate ability was the key thing to balancing this map. I had wanted to keep it there but in the end (after much debate with others and playtesting) I took it out and replaced it with the trap ability. Not as powerful but still gives lots of opportunity there to seduce/trap and get other units to join you. Many of the other changes were made to make it harder on seducers and trappers by eliminating the entanglers/webbers and necromancers. I also eliminated some of those tough units early on that were random guards. You can still try and seduce and trap but without those extra armies that work in combination it does tend to make things more risky and you're not likely to gain a huge advantage the first 5 days from trapping that game winning army. Although.... there are some mighty armies out there to go grab and opportunities to use trap/seduce to the fullest along with many of the magic vaults out there. By comparison, all the other changes are really minor, the underground was left pretty much untouched and most of the changes above ground are in the areas the players will see the first 1-5 days. After that, the doors are wide open to try and exploit the underground, the other AI players and find a path to victory. The final revisions are being made to map, all the players in the semi's have seen the draft versions and have had time to provide feedback. Soon the tourney version will be uploaded and added to the rest of the maps out there.
The tension is rising, as the final draws near... do you think that, now that the stakes are high, we will see a lot more swearing and disputes between players?

Enginerd Oh absolutely..... I've got to make sure Swolte doesn't demote Timelord... but what could be worse than Cherub , I mean... he is the boss so we can't have him using his seraph powers to influence things... oh yeah.... won't let Swolte push us around.... and the swearing... sheesh... they are already on the Road to Hell so I don't think they're too worried about their souls. This is for eternal fame and glory here! I can't wait thump on the first one that gets out of line (and no, this is not an attempt to influence James and what will most certainly be a very entertaining theme to his posts). Yeah... the pressure is on... the gloves are coming off... let the war begin!
Yes, we are expecting some fireworks! Where is the name, Enginerd, derived from, actually?

Enginerd probably the most "un"interesting question.... well... you see... when I decided to actually register with HeavenGames I still held the internet community as something I didn't completely trust (I still don't completely). I had never posted in any forums anywhere and hadn't done anything other than send emails to friends and coworkers. So I wanted to be very anonymous, I really didn't know how long I would actually stay active and thought it would be a passing thing. So I picked some silly name without giving it much thought. I am an engineer by degree and job but that isn't very exciting a name. And... like many computer people I am a bit of a "nerd". So I put the two together (and I wasn't the first to ever do this) so engineer + nerd became enginerd.... yeah... very uninteresting.
I figured, ah! Anyway, thank you so much for your time!
Ladies and gentlemen, this was TNS for you today!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 12-04-09 10:15 AM EDT (US)     224 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, this is TNS! We have big news as the semi finals have now officially begun!

The game between Costa and JamesEde has been set up here and players seem to prepare to get into their characters.

TimeLord and Swolte will battle it out over here!

As announced by Enginerd, the timing rules will be in effect next week to give players some time to prepare!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 12-07-09 07:57 PM EDT (US)     225 / 244  
Today for the TNS we bring you a couple updates. As you have seen the semi finals have started and a one week grace period on quick play has been given for the players. We have already seen a couple turns played but we don’t expect much until later this week. Today, we have brought our guest apprentice once again to help us analyze the semi-final matches, so let’s welcome that dear little boy…

Wow… it is so nice to be here again. I’m sooo excited about this round of the tourney.

So tell us, what can we expect this round?

Well, there is one match that is very exciting. Many have said that this is the real finale of the tourney, that of course is the match between Timelord and Swolte. Swolte is the defending champ but in that last tourney the champion going into it was Timelord. Unfortunately Timelord had some real life things going on and was unable to compete. Sooooo… it could be said that Timelord has yet to be defeated and Swolte snuck in and stole the crown from him (hehehehehe)

I see… so… this is a fitting match between champions. What can we expect?

Well, this map is interesting and it will be a race in many ways. How quickly they can expand and gather in those needed troops to storm the center or invade the other homeland. They also must be careful in that they don’t have a wizard tower, we don’t expect them to kill off their wizard but you never know. This game will not be lengthy but likely to be over quickly. The poll results say that Timelord will be victorious but Swolte is confident and he is certainly capable of winning.

Well, what about the other game?

Well, this match won’t be as exciting a game as the other but we’re expecting to see great turn logs. JamesEde has really put on a show with his great play and great posts. It will probably be very fun to watch. I expect a bit more conservative play from these two, they will both be aggressive in their own ways but with slightly less risk taking. In the end, the runner up from last year is expected to be victorious. Costa will advance and try and win the crown once again.

I see, so what else can you tell us about this round.

Well, Charx and JamesEde have both predicted 10 of the 12 matches correctly. Quite an accomplishment especially since the majority of the poll predictions have only guessed 7 of the 12 matches correctly. So hats off to those two for doing so well.

Well, the semi-finals have begun, we can only wait and see what will happen next. Good luck to our 4 semi-finalists, that’s your belated Sunday TNS update!
posted 12-08-09 04:47 PM EDT (US)     226 / 244  
accidentally deleted the final tournament version sent me, can i get a resend?



posted 12-19-09 06:20 PM EDT (US)     227 / 244  
Wow... exciting... the game between Costa and James has just ended in one big glorious battle, go here to congratulate Costa and read more

Also.... Tl and Swolte (mostly Swolte) will be having some real life adventures and be unable to play so their game is being put on hold (sort of, they might sneak a turn in here and there) while Swolte is travelling around the world (Africa) the next two weeks.

Sooo.... one player is in the finals and the other game will be decided after the holidays!
posted 12-20-09 04:02 PM EDT (US)     228 / 244  
Welcome to today’s TNS with our weekly update. The highlights of this week were announced yesterday when Costa defeated JamesEde to become our first Finalist. Congratulations Costa! And now, we have a quick announcement by Enginerd, welcome to the show, what’s the big announcement.

Enginerd Well, as many of you have seen Swolte is going to Africa for two weeks and doesn’t think he’ll get to play any turns. Timelord is also going to be quite busy during the holidays for a week too. So, in light of these events we’re going to give these two a break from our timing rules for a couple weeks. We expect things to get back to normal on Jan 7th or so. Yes, we know this will delay some things but it is too important a match to be decided by timing constraints with two players with proven reliability. Besides, we all want to see this one played out.

I see, well, how with this impact the timing of the finals?

Enginerd Well, we’re starting the process of playtesting the map for the finals, Too Much Water. It’s a great little map and with Timelord as the author we are not expecting there to be many changes needed for balance. Oleg and I are doing a quick run through playing both sides, you can follow along our comments here. Also, if others have comments about balance then please email me your concerns. Hopefully, this map will be ready to go by the time the other semi-final game ends so we can quickly start the finals. I suspect late January and hopefully the finals will be ended sometime late Feb or early March.

Great, thanks for that update. Now we have another guest on the show, the one and only (how in the heck am I going to say this name ) Nylar, oops, Nyarly, darn, Nyarlathotep, welcome to the show. Your map is being used for the semi-finals of the tournament. How do you feel about that?

Nyarlathotep: I really feel humbled and honoured. As a green-eared mapmaker who has only one map in the the download section, and who is still strugling with the events, I never thought my map would be chosen for the tournament, let alone the semi-finals.

How did you get the idea for Road to Hell? And can you tell us about the map-making process?

Nyarlathotep: The inspiration was Dante's Inferno, where the last stage should have been a trip through the nine planes of hell. But it was rather badly drawn and it took way to long for a tournament map. But that was the version I sent to the mapmakers contest, because ditching/redrawing the shadowworld would ask too much time and that way I would have missed the deadline. But it's a map I enjoyed making, and the fact there was a deadline allways brings in some extra with me. I hate pressure, but it helps me a lot After the contest, Swolte contacted me if I would mind changing/ditching the shadowworld, add some more connections etc, as there was potential in this map to make it a nice tournament map. And who was I to decline such an honour, working together with one of AoWII:SM's original mapmakers...? Anyhow without Swolte or Enginerd, this map wouldn't be very balanced, so kudo's to them!

Do you have any advice for the players who will be contending on the map?

Nyarlathotep: Use objects to your advantage, trap as much as you can, try to secure the teleporters so you can harrass the other player his underground cities... Or rush like hell to the objective

can you tell us a bit more about yourself? How you got to discover the game, and what you liked about it?

Nyarlathotep: Aside from being a musician and a gamesfanatic, I was allways interested in maps and fantasy. I have written some shortstories, for which I have drawn maps allso, but I'm not good in putting myself too write - I hate blank pages...
Anyhow, one good day, a friend of mine was playing this game. It looked nice, gameplay was good and there was a random map generator! I said to myself: "Wow! Endless gamplay!", until I bumped into the editor. And lo and behold, I had found God-Mode! Now I'm slightly more making maps as playing the game itself :grin:

If you could change anything in the game, what would you change?

Nyarlathotep: This is the easiest question ever: make the game open source, so that every irritating error can be patched.

Really appreciate those comments and what a great interview. Thanks for coming on the show. In closing….

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
posted 01-09-10 12:57 PM EDT (US)     229 / 244  
Welcome to the TNS report. We’ve been enjoying the holidays and now we’re back! We hope this New Year is a great one for all of you. Today, on the show we will visit with Enginerd and get an update on the tourney.

So, Enginerd, how’s the tourney going?

Enginerd Well, er, um… Slow. Nothing has really happened the last few weeks. Well, except for Swolte’s African Safari

(off in Africa we see)

Come my dear boy, we’re almost there.

Master, where are we going?

How many times must I tell you, we’re going on a safari, in search of adventures for my book, er um my screenplay, er um, my movie, yes, my movie. We need some adventure.

Master, what kind of adventure are we looking for?

I was hoping to capture a one of kind creature, and do battle with it and conquer it and then show the world what a great wizard I am.

Master, isn’t that kind of dangerous? I mean, are we safe?

Of course we’re safe, what utter nonsense, what creature would dare harm me?

(shakes head in disbelief) *this is going to be bad* Yes Master

(back to the TNS)

So, Swolte went to Africa and his game was delayed, ok, ok, but he’s back now. Has the game started again?

Enginerd Yes it has. It was a most exciting turn. I’m sure everyone read about it. I can hardly wait to see how Timelord responds.

Er, um, I thought the only thing Swolte said was “ts”.

Enginerd Yeah, really exciting . You can see how I’m trying to build interest but it’s tough with material like that

Ok, well, how about the evaluation of the map for the final round. Too Much Water. How’s that going?

Enginerd It’s going fairly well. Oleg and I are playtesting a game on both sides and having fun. We’re poking around at some of the strategies and looking for balance issues.

So what can you tell us so far?

Enginerd Well, I’m playing about as poorly as I can. Twice now I’ve ended my turn healing up right close to a treasure site and on my next turn I forget to clear the treasure. The money and items lost has hurt me, and we’re both playing a bit recklessly and aggressively. Oleg’s had his missteps too so it’s probably not the best game for either of us. But, we’re having fun and learning some things. There are a couple things I’m looking for right now and we’ll see what feedback we get. Oleg is keeping a good log and we’ll hear about that when our games are over. The two things I’m most worried about are the random creatures that wander around causing grief and the quests and their rewards. Also not sure about the spawning druid too and I could go on with a few other things but… hey, it’s under evaluation. It’s a fun map and I hope several others play it and send me their feedback. Please do, I’d like to hear your thoughts on the balance.

Well, there you have it. The semi-final game is back on track and moving forward. Do you have any parting words for us today.

Enginerd Absolutely, for those of you that are interested in playing AoW1 games then hop on over there and sign up for our 2010 tourney, we just announced it here and hopefully I can convine the press to show up soon and give us a great welcome as we open up the TNS over there.

*shakes head in disbelief* (not another TNS , will that mean more of Flander ). Oh, that sounds wonderful
posted 01-16-10 09:18 PM EDT (US)     230 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS!
On the show today is Swolte to discuss the absence and his current plans. Welcome Swolte, what is it like being back? And how was the trip?
Thank you! Niger is an amazing place. It helped knowing people, like a brother that lives there, to show you around. But it is also great to be back, however, finding the time to do turns was a bit of challenge. I am trying to get the tournament turns out as soon as I can, of course. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for my opponent at the moment. Well, I hope all is ok and we can get going soon.

As for your trip, I thought the rules said a 2 week delay wasn't allowed upon signing up for this tournament.

... So, why are we still talking?
Well, I guess I am not disqualified. Frankly, had I been the head of tournament now, I wouldn't have disqualified someone in the semi-finals during this time. After all, it was during X-mas and New-years, and I think those are fair excuses.
Also, at the time I signed up, I didn't expect to still be playing in the tournament around this time.

Very well. How is the match with Timelord going?
If Timelord doesn't get himself disqualified, we'll probably find out soon enough. So far, things could be worse... I don't want to release much more information at this point.

You brought something for us, today?
Yes, I (well, my girlfriend...) organized the registration statistics for AoWH and did soem Excel magic. What we are looking at are the number of people that have signed up through the Age of Wonders Websites this year.

Age of Wonders: Shadow Magic was released near the end of 2003, so the 2004 statistics represent the first year of release. You can see that in general, fewer and fewer people sign up.

This is depressing... All the work we do as a community! The patch, mods, those great maps! We're going down!
Relax... It is normal that the numbers go down, as the game is now over 6 years old. It would be interesting to see how other games curve down... Also, we don't know how bad the graphs would have looked if the patch, those mods, or great maps were never made, for example.

Hmmm, a second looks shows we are stabilizing a bit, though. This year we actually went up for the very first time! Why could this be?
It is possible that the PBEM tournament had something to do with it. An active site just attracts more people to register. People want to follow what is going on!

Possible! Well, it surely is an exciting graph!
Ladies and gentlemen, this is TNS for you today!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
posted 01-17-10 11:07 AM EDT (US)     231 / 244  
Did you fire Flander, my favorite wizard of all time? And.. hired your girlfriend instead for the job?? **casting Fury on self**

I miss Flander's charts !! **going Berserk**

Tired of manually receiving/sending your PBEM turns everyday ? Try out Dave's PBEM Wrapper!

[This message has been edited by naecO (edited 01-17-2010 @ 11:08 AM).]

posted 01-18-10 11:22 AM EDT (US)     232 / 244  
Interesting chart. Now what's the average number of posts per year (other than PBEM) in here? Is it possible to "lure" those registered users to post here more?
An active site just attracts more people to register. People want to follow what is going on!
What is it that we (uh... others ) can do to make it more attractive? I know PBEM is one... for sure. What about online tournaments? I read that The Groll suggested AoWH-chatroom long time ago but it didn't go very well. This could've really helped to organize some tournaments and possibly create some "traffic and buzz" around here.

Then I also read about Battle of the Forums, which was to add some activity around. Didn't really grasp the idea of it... but slightly belated congratulations of that achievement anyway.
Is it possible to have these kind of tournaments more?

What are people interested of discussing anyway? I could go on and talk about space, philosophy and other very close subjects to our everyday living, but I can't really see people getting interested of these matters. Especially as this' a gaming forum and my talent in Enlgish is very limited.

Furthermore discussion about this subject would need its own thread though...

Sorry for derailing this topic but I thought it was fitting to post it here after that chart.
posted 01-19-10 08:33 AM EDT (US)     233 / 244  
– We’re here with Enginerd today to discuss some late breaking news. It seems that one of the semi-final games has ended with the disqualification of Timelord. Can you eplain to us what is going on?

Enginerd – Well, according to the tourney rules if you fail to communicate absences then you will get reminders followed up with warnings, followed up with a disqualification. We have had to do this a few times in the tourney, mostly in the first round of games. We followed the guidelines and probably stretched them a little but after 7 days without a reply there is little I can do.

– Well, how come Swolte wasn’t disqualified when he went to Africa and was gone for two weeks? Are you playing favorites?

Enginerd – No, no favoritism. Timelord and Swolte are both fellow staffers and I consider them both as friends. The decision over the holidays to allow the break in playing was easy. Swolte (with plenty of early communication) told us he would be gone. Timelord also announced he had about a 7-8 day window where he was busy over that same period. It was the holidays and when the tourney was organized we really didn’t think about what would happen late December with the tourney. So for the good of the tourney, to see these two skilled players play, I decided to grant the exception, it was made in advance of the delay and communicated to the players and here on the TNS. In this situation, we’re dealing with NOT knowing what is going on.

– Well that is shame, this game between Swolte and Timelord was touted as one to watch with two of the strongest players in the tourney. What happens next?

Enginerd – Yes, it is a shame, especially this late in the tourney. I think we all were looking forward to this match. Moving on this is what we can expect. First, Timelord has the right to appeal the disqualification. I hope he requests this, the panel of judges will then decide if the disqualification stands. They will take into account any reasons for the absence and appeal. This will be done behind closed doors. Second, regardless of an appeal I am actively working on the map to be used in the finals for any tweaks or balance changes. I hope to have that completed soon (next few days maybe) and then we can get started on the final, which will have quite a bit of hype around it too as it will be a repeat of the finals from last tourney.

– So there is a chance Timelord and Swolte could still play out there game? What is going on? Is he all right? Did something bad happen?

Enginerd – Well, yes, there is an outside chance that the game will continue but time is working against us. We can only hope that real life issues for Timelord can be resolved and everything is ok.

– I see, well, thanks for taking time to explain things. Best wishes to Timelord and hope all is well.
posted 01-19-10 09:08 PM EDT (US)     234 / 244  
The judges will have their rightful, wise and final word on this matter, but I wish this game may continue
posted 01-19-10 10:18 PM EDT (US)     235 / 244  
We’re here tonight with some late breaking news. Yes, that’s right folks, the appeal has failed, the disqualification of Timelord holds, Swolte has won and will face Costa in the Finals. Once again we have Enginerd here to explain the situation. So, tell us, what happened and why don’t we get to see this much anticipated match? Will the forummers revolt?

Enginerd First, let me say that this is a shame as this match was much anticipated and that Timelord has been ill and the appeal was given its due consideration. We are glad to hear that TL is feeling better and will be rejoining us.

So, what happened, how did the appeal process work? Who made the decision?

Enginerd In fairness to our judges they’re voting is confidential. I will tell you that it was a difficult decision and the judges were split in their decisions. Swolte did not participate in any of the discussions about the appeal. It is a shame but there are some good things that we can look forward to.

*that’s a load of baloney, how is he going to spin this to be good* Really, tell us.

Enginerd Well, the tourney can continue moving, the other semi-final game ended a month ago and Costa has been waiting patiently. We also have the chance to look forward to a rematch of last year’s finale. There is much that can be built up with this match and it will be very exciting. Also, the map for the finals won the mapmaking competition so we’ve got a great map. And I have one more special announcement to make about the finals.

*boy, he’s really stretching to make this sound good, yeah, those are nice points but really, I wonder if I should pound on him with a tough question here* Oh do tell, what is this ever so great announcement, I’m on pins and needles *NOT*

Enginerd A new thread will soon be opened announcing the Finals “Consolation” matches

The wha what?

Enginerd Consolation games! We aren’t going to just have one game for the finals but we are going to have several consolations games going on at the same time. Everyone in the tourney will have a chance to play one more game. They must sign up for it but they can play in a consolation match. JamesEde has already laid out the challenge to play for 3rd place against Timelord. I’m sure there are others out there that wouldn’t mind another game. There could be rematches of great games played in the earlier rounds. Naeco mentioned that there was someone he wanted to play in round 2 or 3 I think. And what about a rematch between Pawel and Enginerd, or maybe you want to challenge someone? Maybe you wanted to see a game between two players, you can nominate a game to be played.

So….. you could challenge Costa for a rematch? Or…. I could recommend that two other players play each other? *now that is an interesting thought*

Enginerd You bet, the sky is the limit. We won’t force someone to play in one of these games, they must sign up. Also, keep in mind that none of these games will impact who gets crowned champion, that game is between Swolte and Costa but bragging rights and fun are what we’re hoping to pull out in this one as well as get many players a chance to play the mapmaking competition winning map, Too Much Water. So, check out that thread for all the details. I should have it up and posted soon.

Well, that does sound like fun. Do you expect many will sign up?

Enginerd Maybe, maybe not, but I hope those who do sign up and watch the games have fun and it will be a great way to end this great tourney.

Well, lots of news the last couple days with high points and low points. *I gotta make my list of who I want to see play games* Until next time on the TNS when we have some guest commentary from Costa, Oleg, Swolte and Enginerd on the balance changes for the final map.
posted 01-24-10 04:31 PM EDT (US)     236 / 244  
Welcome to our Sunday Afternoon TNS update. Today we have a few guests with some comments. We’re going to be discussing the map being used in the Finals and talk about the balance aspects of the game. First, let’s go to Costa, he’s been waiting a long time to play this match so let’s hear what he has to say about the map.

(Costa) - I have finished several pbems with TroyLocker from both sides on this map. Here are my thoughts:

- It is a very fun and balanced map.
- The questrewards can be a game turner, but on the other side they make the map much more fun. I suggest to keep them.
- I like all the scouting creatures (crocs etc.), and suggest to keep them.

Great comments, what else did you find, maybe that could be changed?

(Costa) Well, I found out that I got joining druids even though I killed the ents... And, I’d like to see a change in the eastern market place, I suggest to at least put a balloon or a steam tank.

Hmmmm, a problem with the events… maybe a few more units.. OK, well, let’s turn to Oleg and his comments. Oleg what can you add.

(Oleg) I playtested both sides of the map with Enginerd and I kept a diary of things. I do not have much to say about ways to balance the map but that Human villages could be positioned a bit closer to the Green party (yeah, I know that I am not really helping) and wish of my heart was that Crocks would not be so ssslllloooowwwwww

I see, well, what about you Swolte, what have you got to say about the map.

I asked Enginerd to check/playtest the event at the end SU: guard? The behaviour is set to none, and it spawns when an Ent 'is' and 'is not' present in the area. Sounds fishy...

I see, another event issue, what else?

With this many crocs, druid with control animal becomes quite attractive, indeed. Then again, there are so many events related to those Ents staying alive over there, I honestly have no idea whether it balances out. I probably wont have the time to play-test thoroughly anyway.

The quests are ok, I guess. Its part of the game, although the War quest (Gobs) is generally somewhat better when it comes to unit rewards (which are probably what you want).

OK, so nothing major jumps out at you either. Well, lets go talk to Enginerd. So, what changes did you decide to make to the map.

Enginerd Well, I do want to thank those that sent me comments it really helped. After I playtested with Oleg I found a couple things frustrating but not necessarily balance issues. Mostly with these comments and playing I knew we had to take a look at those events. And, we found they needed to be tweaked.

Tweaked… what do you mean.

Enginerd Well, sometimes the events don’t do exactly what was originally intended. The druid spawning thing and a couple other events. The logic in the scripts can be a bit…. Odd… sometimes but once you sit down and go through it (500 times) it almost sort of makes sense… maybe

Anyways, yeah, the scripts didn’t do everything that Timelord intended. So I fixed them. The druids spawn the way they should now if you leave the ents alone. All the bad things that are supposed to happen if you kill the ents will now take place. Just minor things but lots of work with those events. This is also what took the most time to figure out since I’m not very good with scripts having not done much mapmaking but it works now .

What about the other comments, were there things you wanted to change as well.

Enginerd I had two other concerns with this map. The Quests and the wandering crocs. Sometimes quest rewards can really shift things one way or another. I played the first few days several times and it can get quite interesting. But, from the comments from the othe players it was hard to make any changes to the quests.

What about all those crocs?

Enginerd Yeah, they really bothered me, or I should say… caused me grief when I was playtesting with Oleg. One game was lost due to their behavior (and Oleg’s fine play) but I found after playtesting several times that they tend to patrol around in about the same way every time. It almost becomes predictable. So from that aspect you can plan for them and be prepared. Also, the opportunity to possibly enlist the aid of some strong (and slow) crocs is an interesting thought. In the end, the decision was made to NOT make any changes to the crocs or patrolling units. Very few changes really.

Excellent, so I see the finals have already started, Costa has played his first turn. What do you expect to see in this match?

Enginerd Well, I think Costa has had ample time to playtest and work out his strategy. Whatever it is, he is prepared. I see the turns getting played quickly so I don’t think it will take more than a few weeks, by mid February we should be ready to crown a champion. Swolte has had less time to playtest but don’t worry, he’ll come up with a plan. It really is an interesting map. You can approach your enemy from several different directions, each one has things that make that difficult. Water and terrain, area guards, patrolling troops, going out of the way. Yes, interesting in that you must pick some way to go and probably choose a couple different routes at the same time. Very interesting possibilities.

So, who is going to win?

Enginerd I’ll let Flander answer that one

I will say this, it is a repeat of last year’s tournament finale, Swolte vs Costa. Swolte was victorious last time and I think he is the favorite. I recently played Costa (arghhhh, darn him) and I haven’t ever played Swolte 1v1 but I have seen much of what he’s done through the videos. We shall see…. And yes, we hope to have a video of this game

great news, now, what is going to happen with all these consolation games?

Enginerd Over the next couple days we’ll try and figure out if anyone else wants to play and then we’ll put a few matches together. It will be interesting to see how it works out, maybe we’ll have a few rematches in there, maybe not. But it looks like we’ll have several games starting later this week. We also need to get the map updated and in the downloads section. That will happen soon.

Thanks everyone for coming on the show. Good luck to our finalists and hope you enjoyed today's show!
posted 01-31-10 10:46 AM EDT (US)     237 / 244  
Welcome to the TNS report and our weekly update of how things are going. Today, we welcome to show that dear little boy and apprentice. Welcome, glad you could make it.

Yes it’s soooo good to be here, I could hardly wait to give you another update, I was soooo worried you wouldn’t ever ask me back, it’s quite amazing to be on this show, normally I just get stuck cleaning up the mess everywhere, it can be soooo hard to clean up a bog, but now I get to do an analysis on the games and it is sooo exciting *interruption*

Yes, yes, my dear little boy, well, let’s get started, shall we. Now, what is going on with the final game of the tourney between Swolte and Costa?

Well, after a slow start, things have picked up and they are currently on about day 4-5. You can follow along with their game here:09Final (Swolte vs Costa). Swolte took advantage of the one week grace period on turns to really plan out his strategy. He must have heard that Costa got help from Troy Locker to really test out his game strategy. Could it be a sign that Swolte is worried, I think not, he is confident, but that could be his downfall in the end, thinking that Costa might not have put the dedication into this match but no Costa is ready and he wants to win this tourney, oh yes indeed *interruption*

Wow, you really want to talk today for some reason, calm down and stop the rambling, ok. Good. Now what else can you tell us about the tourney?

Well, this week there were 6 consolation matches started. That’s right, several players signed up to play a game too, there are rematches and grudge matches and new matches and all sorts of great games to watch.

Really! Do tell us more, what are some of the big games going on?

OK, I’ll give you a quick rundown of the games

Enginder vs LordDuck – 5th place Consolation Match In this game we have the only ones from the group of 3rd round losers so we’re calling this the match for 5th and 6th place. These two players have met many times in FFA games, especially in several BNW games so they should know each other well. We expect a fairly quick game that will be fun to watch, and we’ve been promised a video of the game when it’s all said and done! Right now they’re on day 3 so too early to tell what is going on in their game.

Neaco vs Pawel – The Rematch Yes, this will be a great rematch of their game in the first round, you can read about that game here . Pawel had a great victory in that match. Both players had a great run this year in the tourney so this rematch is going to be exciting. These two are well matched. However, the game is currently on about day 4 but neither player has really studied the map much, so it is a more a friendly game. We’ll see if that changes as the game progresses but surely a fun one to watch.

Charx vs Smuki – Round 2 Consolation This is another game being played between two players that made it into Round 2. They both had a great tourney run so this game (and the rematch above) is for bragging rights in the group of round 2. This game is on about day 6 and neither player spent much time in great study of the map. However, it will be fun to watch them play.

Naeco vs TroyLocker – Special Veterans Match This year we were lucky to have Troy Locker join us, after a long absence from the forums. He had a great tourney this year and played some tough opponents. Unfortunately he didn’t make it out of the first round but that was a couple months ago and now he has shaken all the rust off. He is better prepared. Naeco seemed a worthy opponent for him, so we’re calling this the match of the Veterans! It will be interesting as Troy Locker seemed to have spent much time helping Costa prepare for his match, Naeco probably isn’t as prepared from his earlier comments with Pawel. We expect that preparation to pay off but you never know, this will certainly be a very exciting match.

Gwenio vs Picrasso – battle of the newbies 1 and Travis vs Dragonkiller – battle of the newvies 2 It was exciting to see 4 players sign up that weren’t in the tourney. These games will be great preparation for these newer players for next year’s tourney. We don’t know much about most of these players but we are excited to see them play. Travis has been playing in the AoW1 forums for some time and is making a solid presence there. There is great hope for him. We also watch the others with great interest. What kind of name will these new players make for themselves, time will tell and the sky is the limit. Good luck to them.

Wow, what a great analysis, so will there be any other consolation matches going on: Is that all that we can expect?

Well, there was some talk that JamesEde would sign up and and challenge Timelord, the challenge was made in the turn logs of that game but neither player signed up. It may still happen and would be a great matchup (and an entertaining read). There was another match we would kind of hoping to see a rematch of…. And we’ll see if happens too but for now the swolte-timelord rematch is still up in the air. That would be an exciting one to see too.

I see. How exciting that would be. Well. What can we expect in our next report? What’s going to happen this week.

Well, the games are going to move quickly and it’s possible that they could start to finish up this week but more likely in about two weeks we’ll see games start to finish. Next week we will have a good report on the polls and game predictions and more followups with the games in progress. Should be an exciting week.

Thanks for coming on the show, until next time, this is your TNS Sunday Update. Until next time.
posted 02-07-10 03:04 PM EDT (US)     238 / 244  
Welcome to the TNS SuperBowl Sunday update! Before we start our show we’ll hear a word from our sponsors….

*screen fades to black and then we see Flander the Wizard and his twin brother Flander the Kinght*

How about a game of H.O.R.S.E. my dear brother? Or are you chicken?

Ha! I go first. Bet you can’t do this…. You silly wizard! Take your sword (if you have one, hehehehehe) and chop that pumpkin in half, blindfolded. Like this *Flander the Knight easily does it*

No problem, but who needs a sword when you can use your wand *Flander takes his wand and swishes it at the pumpkin that and then removes his blindfold* See, no problem.

Now, try this. Taking your wand (turnabout is fair play), levitate these 10 oranges and have them spin in a circular pattern, oh, while blindfolded… just like this *Flander executes the juggling performance perfectly with his wand*, Good luck dear brother

You think I can’t do that, watch this, *Flander pulls out, not one but two short swords, hooks them between his elbows, balances his long sword on his head, closes the visor on his helmet and starts throwing oranges about while performing what can only be describes as a dance with the swords keeping the oranges in the air* Now, what have you got to say about that! Now, my turn.

Stand on your horse, ride backwards, thrust your lance into the oncoming knight and eat an apple. Watch….. see, piece of cake! Now you’re turn

*Flander the Knight stares in disbelief as Flander the Wizard makes it*

Yes, piece of cake. Now my turn. Watch…. Stand on the crystal ball, summon a frog in your left hand, and a fireball in your right, now spin around in a circle 4 times and repeat these words, “Flander is the greatest Wizard in the Universe”

Watch this *stands on crystal ball, grabs Flander’s frog, scoops up some fire from the ground, starts to spin and then* now listen, Flander is the greastest Knight in the Universe

Ha, now it’s my turn again. You’ll never get this one…… *commercial fades out and we hear our Sponsor*

Heavengames – Age of Wonders Shadow Magic - Just play it

Now back to the action. First we’ll hear from that dear little boy and he will give us an update on all the consolation games.

Oh yes, it’s been a great week of play. None of the games have ended yet but some are close and there has been a lot of action.

Enginerd and Lord Duck are both making progress but they have not met, not yet, they are past day 10 and making steady progress. Both are complaining of floundering around with poor starts, maybe this is a ruse by one or both or they both lack a cohesive strategy. Either way, it appears to be turning into a slow and deliberate game. We’ll see.

Naeco and Troy Locker are making great progress, their game is on about day 15 and it appears that Troy Locker got himself voided (presumably battling indies) several days ago. Naeco reports that things are going slowly too but it is hard to tell what is really going on.

Now, Naeco and Pawel, well, there’s an interesting read… from Pawel that is , it seems Naeco hasn’t posted in about 10 days so we really don’t know what he’s up to, however, Pawel is moving forward, once again it appears to be a slower more methodical game. I think we’re seeing a trend developing here.

Moving on to Charx and Smuki we have a game that looks destined to last many moons. They are already on day 20 and there have been battles between them, but mostly small skirmishes. It appears there are a couple stacks of Charx deep in Smuki’s lands but Smuki is trying to push them out, maybe he can and maybe he cannot, so difficult to tell but Charx does not sound overly confident that this one will end soon. It’s going to be fun to see how it all plays out.

The other two games with our newer players are also going well. Gwenio and Picrasso are on about day 7 and moving forward, mostly just securing their homelands, Picrasso has gained a wizard tower in the goblin lands, we assume through the use of the production resources. In the game between Travis and Dragonkiller it seems that Travis is doing well. He claims to have a doom wolf on his side and Dragonkiller is complaining of those troublesome indies.

thanks for the update, it seems these games are progressing well enough, will any of them finish soon?

Oh yes, I think we have a good chance to see a couple of them finish this week.

OK, now for the game we’ve been waiting for, the FINALS! What’s going on, how are things developing, who is going to win, when will it end?

Battles and chases, it’s developing, don’t know who will win and not sure when it will end.

er, um, I need more… come on… details

Well, it’s been an exciting game. This one is truly different from the others, both players are doing some things differently and they are very aggressive, Swolte nearly claiming victory by rushing underground by day 7. So yes, it’s exciting. Costa apparently sold off his wizard tower so he’d have some extra cash to buy the human town in the south. He is making great use of the control animal ability and Swolte is chasing him down. In fact, Swolte’s reports tell us the chase is on. We don’t know exactly where but it sounds like Queen Vitoria is down in the human town while a bunch of crocs hold the northern capital. The chase has taken them all over the map and we don’t know what else is going on. It’s terribly exciting and we can’t wait to see what will happen next. Chances are something big will happen this week. Will Swolte’s chase end with him catching Costa, or will Costa mount a solid defense and strike back? Too tough to call but a most exciting match.

Well thanks for the update on this Super Bowl Sunday! Hopefully we'll see some games finish this week, most exciting times!

(note: for the background story on Flander the Knight go Aow1 TNS)
posted 02-07-10 05:17 PM EDT (US)     239 / 244  
Late breaking News!! That's right, you guessed it, the finals are OVER! Costa has beaten Swolte! Check it out in the turn logs here.

Congratulations Costa!
posted 02-07-10 11:11 PM EDT (US)     240 / 244  
Ladies and gentlemen, the tournament is officially over now as in a couple of days, Costa will be crowned the 2009 PBEM champion!

By that time, we will also announce who won the 'best logger' contest. The judges have been pondering about this question as well. In the meantime, you can expect some more interviews with the finalist, as well as some updates on the consolation games!

This was TNS for you on this most exciting day that marks the end of play of the 2009 tournament!

Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
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Age of Wonders 2 Heaven » Forums » AoW2/SM Play By Email (Turn Logs) » The 2009 Singles Tournament News Station (TNS)
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