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Doom Moon II: Dragon's Revenge


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ALCRITAS

 

A Paradox

 

A scenario both great and awful. Groundbreaking, fascinating, boring, and infuriating.

 

Doom Moon II : Dragon’s Revenge is a... large scenario, to say the least. With its more-than-ample custom graphics file included, its file size easily surpasses any previous BOE scenario. It would be an impossible task to attempt to address the scenario holistically, so I shall instead endeavor to break down the scenario into many smaller pieces, and address them as such.

 

The Plot :

 

In Doom Moon (One), your party ended up killing a Dragon, and now the Dragon’s siblings are out for revenge. They’ve threatened to destroy the kingdom unless you are sacrificed to them, and, as it turns out, they intend to destroy the kingdom regardless of whether they kill you or not.

 

To facilitate their plan of destruction, the Dragons have unleashed three plagues upon the land. (Where have I heard this before..?) Your party must end the plagues, and then seek out an stop the Dragons. Of course, there are about 32 different plot twists prior to the conclusion.

 

The plot comes off as somewhat middling. Early on, much of it feels forced (and a bit unoriginal), but it does grow on you a good deal. Unfortunately, far far too many advances in the plot are accomplished by Stupid Party Syndrome ™, especially near the end. At one point, it’ll be so obvious that your party is the incarnation of stupidity you’ll have to refrain from laughing. Oh well.

 

Scenario Mechanics :

 

I’ll be blunt — they’re amazing. Doom Moon II is the most technically advanced use of the scenario editor yet accomplished. This takes many forms, the most notable being the inclusion of NPCs in your party. You start out with 1 NPC — a character you saved in Doom Moon (One), and can gain up to four others, from a selection of seven. The NPCs act as rewards to many of the various side quests, and provide a far better motivation to undertaking them than most other scenarios. While the NPCs aren’t universally present, they do show up in pretty much every major battle, and are a major asset.

 

Aside from the NPCs, Doom Moon II also employs a wide arrangement of special spells, some used by enemy NPCs, many used by the party. I also do believe that the use of party-based special spells here is the first in any scenario, further establishing Doom Moon II as a groundbreaking advancement of BOE technology.

 

Scenario Aesthetics :

 

A mixed bag. The custom graphics are, generally, VERY well done, and occur all over the place. They add quite a nice touch, and make the scenario, in many places, a pleasure to behold.

 

However, this pleasant viewing experience tends to be balanced by the mediocre, at best, town design, a design which seems to be repeated in virtually every major city. Spelling and grammatical errors aren’t a major problem, but are a bit too common to be totally ignored. Finally, in many major combats you’ll get a “Scenario Error” message often — the result of the “Explosion on Space” special killing an NPC. It’s not a fatal bug, but it certainly hurts the aesthetics of the scenario.

 

Logic :

 

Just a brief note here — Doom Moon II has many many illogical puzzles, but always offers (often) strained explanations for them. It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s enough to keep me from griping endlessly about them.

 

Playability :

 

This is scenario is, shall we say, barely playable. Its designed for Very High level parties, and I suggest you follow the author’s suggestion. An average *WANDERING MONSTER GROUP* might consist of 11 Vampires and 7 Liches. And it only gets worse from there. In many cases the NPCs are vital, as without them your party would be slaughtered without cause. You can find the special spell “Mass Resurrect” — and, take it from me, it’s a very useful special spell. Anyone managing to make it to the final battle will find a whole new experience of combat awaiting them. Doom Moon II is not for the faint of heart.

 

One Final Aside :

 

There’s a sequence near the end, when your party gets trapped inside a village, that is utterly brilliant and amazing. I don’t really know where it fits on the above schematic, but it’s clearly the highpoint of this scenario, and would be the high point of most others as well. Come to think of it, I can’t think of even a single other scene in any scenario that has effected me more....

 

Summing It All Up :

 

Doom Moon II is the natural evolution of scenarios like Spy’s Quest and Demon Island. For some reason, the evolution of BOE mechanics seems to occur most in absurdly hard scenarios. (Anyone with a decent theory explaining why this is, please share it!) I think Doom Moon II is the first of these scenarios that manages to redeem itself with features that overcome the absurd combat.

 

More than any other scenario, Doom Moon II defies the traditional 1 to 10 scoring system. I simultaneously want to give this scenario a 4, a 7, a 15, and a -12. Scoring this scenario has been an exercise in frustration to say the least.

 

I score this scenario with a warning attached — I do NOT want to see another Doom Moon II. You won’t catch the lightning in the bottle again, and I have every expectation that future scenarios along these lines will be more Demon Islands, and less Doom Moons.

 

Doom Moon II is for Very High level parties, and is rated G. (An oversight)

 

My Score — Good

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TERROR'S MARTYR

 

The scenario is easy at level 30, as long as you can get out of that first dragon fight (Let amber slay those Liches for EXP!). The graphics used range from corny (Dragons) to good (Soldiers). The nodes used were awesome. It's completely groundbreaking. The plot... Here's where the beast of a scenario falls short. This plot simply made so sense, and it wasn't the plot that kept my attention (with the exception of that entire sequence in the dissapearing town- marvelous, worthy of a solid short scenario, if it would have been hollowed out, more). Puzzles... There was the interesting "creature as item" recurring puzzle, which usually made sense. Then, there were puzzles like the second version of Latrop, where one must place the crystals in "reverse". Mind you, the only way to check is to see if you're dead, or not. Annoying, to the extreme. And then, there was that final fight- the worst final battle ever, with the possible exception of the DoomMaster. Overall, this scenario is good, excellent, mediocre, and fairly good. But while Alcritas feels strained giving this scenario a high score, I just don't see such a problem. Good

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YMA

 

It was better than DM I, and I felt it had more of a story line. It is one of the most innovaive, and important, scenarios to date. Some of the characters, especially the NPC's, were especially good. I liked the way they talked to you after the battle, and I'm always a little dissopointed when latter (supposedly better) scenarios don't have NPC conversation.

Having said this, it's story line was a bit flat in places, and the combat was horrible. I think it gets my award for Scenario Where I Most Used The Editor (i.e. cheated). The litch combats were particuly nasty.

I'd give it Good

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BRUCE MITCHELL

 

A scenario that must be played. Epic, very difficult. My second most replayed scenario after Falling Stars. I enjoyed the way you could interact with the NPCs after battles. Some cool items, like the 35+10 flaming halberd. You need to play it many times to feel comfortable in it. One amazing fight at the end. Good puzzles. Good

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DRAGYN BOB

 

Nodewise, this scenario was absolutely amazing for its time, and still probably can be considered amazing even now. A lot of the concepts in this scenario can be found replicated in many of today's epics. The plot was pretty good, although I was put off by the ending. The puzzles were good, although the combat might be considered difficult by some. (I personally was using a god party and murdered the dragons in one round every time) I'd give it a Good

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HELLSPAWN

 

I thought this was tough with the weird spells and all those puzzles (tested normally).

 

I will start with a 10 but do deductions.

 

-1.5 points for having every single town hostile and making the plot confusing. It took a couple of hours to finally get back on track.

 

-0.5 points for having the weird spells when it was my allies turn (that's what I saw; I was not slowed but rather hasted when it happened and the dragon finished it's turn)

 

That's pretty much it, thus I give this scenario Good

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I AM BOB SUSHI

 

It was sometime in 99, I think, when I went to the Spiderweb tables for the first time, looking for a cool scenario to play. Doom Moon II was the first that caught my eye. “A nightmare from beginning to end.” is a good attention-grabber. So, I downloaded it, went through the party maker a few times, watched the movie, and started playing.10 minutes later, I found myself up against 6 very powerful dragons. And I had no idea what to do. Using Armageddon never even occurred to me.

 

It was 2 years before finally gave Doom Moon II another try. This time, with more than 30 other scenarios completed, the answer to the first puzzle quickly became obvious. And the nightmare began.

 

The strongest point of the scenario is design. It was this scenario that showed, for the first time, the true potential of the editor. To the best of my knowledge, DM II was the first to combine NPCs, Special Spells, and NPC spells in one scenario, and remained so until Falling Stars. Almost all the dungeons were made very well, with unique little puzzles and difficult monsters thrown in at every turn. Finally, the scenario was big, very big. There were at least three different outdoor ‘regions’, including a futuristic sequence, and over 70 towns. The fights were hard, yes, but nothing too challenging for a party with a bit of experience. He was also the first, and one of the only, to make a ‘movie’ with the editor.

 

The scenario did well in plot, but it certainly wasn’t as good as many others. The three main quests at the beginning seem a bit repetitive, but looking at how varied and fun the dungeons are, I don’t think this was a big issue. The real fun came after you got the map together. The Spaceship’s ending, the barrier town, the truth about the Red Dragon, and the final battle with San-Racku. All strengthen the plot tremendously. Suspense was used well in many points, and there was always a sense that you were going to walk into a town and see it destroyed. My only big complaint is the actual ending; I strongly dislike “it never really happened” plots.

 

Andres Gonzales did a lot to make the scenario fun. The Rock, Paper, Scissors and soccer games were enjoyable, and the custom spells were all cool, especially Blades of Exile. The custom monsters were well designed and a lot of amusing to fight, especially the fish. And of course, there’s the huge surprise when you meet the last monster.

 

The NPCs, especially, were among the best part of the game. The quests were all a lot of fun, and often yielded more gains than just a new member, such as weapons. They appeared for all major battles making them a great asset. Amber was useful against the outdoor monsters, as you could move your party down, while she easily took out even Liches quickly. Also, after the battles were over, you could talk to most of them, and they gave you hints or much needed comic relief.

 

The custom graphics were pretty good, but the dragons’ crowns were ugly. Not a big thing. There were also no bugs I ran into, pretty incredible for a scenario like that. A few spelling mistakes, but certainly not as many as Doom Moon I. Also, I think the title was cool.

 

Doom Moon II revolutionized the way BoE world, and it’s incredible design was an inspiration for scenarios like Falling Stars. I wish the author continued to be part of the community. His next one could have been astonishing (not that this wasn’t, but even more so.)

 

I do hereby give Doom Moon II a 9.5

 

DMII is for Very High level parties and is rated G.

 

BEST

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To be honest, I didn't enjoy this scenario as much as I could have. As Drakefyre said, the whole atmosphere felt very fake. The custom graphics were mostly cheesy, and the plot felt very silly.

 

That being said, it had lots of cool techniques used, and was very, very hard. Sometimes it felt like the author wanted to find an interesting way to destroy the party tongue

 

However, this scenario is actually too easy with Thuryl's Demon Armor.

 

I rate this scenario Average.

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