|gl.j2l||Golem Landscapes||10.94 kB||27 Apr 2016|
|IC - Easterius2.j2t||IC - Easterius2||231.26 kB||27 Nov 2006|
|gl.j2as||0.05 kB||27 Apr 2016|
|Level8.ogg||3453.84 kB||10 Apr 2010|
The main theme is a rock Golem, a fictional creature. The Golem supports landscapes on its shoulders. It’s also a symmetrical (Not exactly!) level with a quite organic tileset.
MAJOR EDIT: Even Razz could play this level. Lots of ec adjustments, but since jj2 is so limited, it doesn’t look greatly 3-dimensional. I don’t mind new or updated reviews.
Fun Fact: Golem can mean “blockhead”, hence the design of the golem’s head in this level.
edit: pretty annoying though
edit: finally tried it in a real game.. complete fail lvl
I had some games here and it was really fun. Its bit too easy level for dueling though, if you kill your opponent, you have basically won already. however with 4 players or more the level is great. also the idea of making a golem with this kind of tileset is very original. gj!
FS has done it again.
Another spectacular CTF level with awesome gameplay, an enjoyable and well constructed layout and nice eye-candy that supports the theme.
The ice-shortcut adds a nice strategy-element to navigating the level and even further improves the gameplay.
I’d say this is a top-10 level since 2006, but that’s just me.
Try it out.
Very inspirational, incredibly thought out, with a spectacular design. Made by FireSworD, what’s to expect? Nothing least out the ordinary. Love the idea of the Golem theme, matching very well with the tileset usage, and to top it off, the music fits splendidly.
Seemed fun, and had some cool aspects.
Liked the bases and the top and bottom areas. The freezer thing definately turns me on.
Disliked deadends, shortage of ammo, shortage of oneways, and weird spring thing in the corners.
Not bad. =o
Cool concept, great execution. The layout was a bit confusing at first for me (maybe that was because i forgot about the copters?), but after learning it the level becomes very fun to play, I liked how the bases were placed. The tranquil, dreamy atmosphere is another thing which makes this level great. Overall, an awesome level. Download away!
The best level by FS so far in my opinion. Awesome music choice. :D
Good concept, nice tileset, i wanna say RARE tileset… XD lol…
BG is nice!
XD good idea
A very uniquely designed level. Powerups and carrots are superbly placed. Perhaps the level’s most unusual feature is the area at the top, somewhat isolated from the rest of the level; it contains a lot of RF ammo and (of course) a seeker powerup.
It’s unfortunate that there are so many easily campable areas, however.
I like this level, it have got good eyecandy, nice gameplay and all of the pick ups is good placed. This idea, that the level looks like a big golem is great too.
@ Gry’s rating: Nah, the level gets played a lot, especially at bigger games and perhaps the level is a bit too big for proper 3v3’s, I find it a great level for bigger games. Works well and it is popular. Love the tricks which you’re able to do there too. :)
bad level, way too symmetrical; awful gameplay, the routes seam trippy even though there is little to trip on.
This review has gone through many revisions, but finally I feel it’s ready to be submitted. Also, trying a slightly different approach to my usual reviewing style.
Anyone who knows FireSworD knows that does not just build levels by conventional standards. Looking at his past work, we can see that he thought outside the box and always brought something new and exciting to his levels. Jungle’s Edge and Termite Haven both had very creative visual designs, while Jungle’s Edge has gone on to be one of the most popular CTF levels ever (even if not the best quality). Moving on a short while later, his creations include levels such as Medieval Skyscrapers with its innovative y-axis gameplay with fly carrots, and One Spot with its totally new base system, which wasn’t exactly a huge success but is still remembered for how creative the level was. A few years later FS entered R3ptiles’ Original CTF Contest, getting a very well deserved 1st place with Unconventional Coffee, which had a unique structure in its layout and was also one of the first CTF levels to feature pits. Just under a year ago, FS created the battle level called Enter the Chaos. This level was totally different to anything that had been made beforehand that year. It featured what was basically a “screw the rules I have money” concept, which was despised by some, but for others, it made the level incredibly addictive. I personally saw it as great that he tried something like that as very few people would have the guts to have such an evil concept in a level.
Without further ado, I’ll now talk about the level I’m supposed to be reviewing!
Golem Landscapes uses the rather pretty looking IC – Easterius2 tileset; that is an edit of an edit of Carrotus (the most overused and boring tileset in existence). However, FS still manages to break the “all Carrotus levels look the same” rule and creates something that has a unique appearance – a rock golem, in which the level is built around. While a similar concept was thought of in a level by Sacrush known as Extraterrestrials, where the level featured a giant alien to walk on, Golem Landscapes executes the idea even better as the tileset fits the idea perfectly – the colour of the soil makes it look like stone, while the foliage is used well and clearly shows that this golem belongs to nature. Despite being “man made”, the golem itself feels very organic and fits like a glove with the rest of the level. The atmosphere feels lush, aided by the very well fitting music by Starsky Partridge, which gives the level a very calm and isolated feeling, giving the impression that no man has set foot in this area for some time. The golem structure itself is well designed and although looks “flat” when zoomed out in JCS, that can’t be helped due to being a 2D game and is probably the very best that could be made with JJ2’s limitations.
While the theme of the level is amazing, the real important question about this level is – does it play as great? The answer to that question can be said briefly in one word: yes.
Despite being perfectly symmetrical, given the fact this that this level is designed on a golem combined with some interesting design choices, this level has a unique layout. The base areas are fairly close together, yet movement between them is still not too fast. There are two main routes between the bases: using the warps situated just above the bases, warping you to the central room with an RF PU and tubes which take you to either team’s side. While the distance you travel is very short, the tubes pull you through fairly slowly so this is balanced out. This route is the most frequently used during games, however it’s the most risky as the place you emerge from the tubes is easily camp-able, giving the enemy a guaranteed hit on you if they do so. Thankfully, you can alternatively go around your base and on top of the golem with a copter, falling through the “spring hole” to reach the other team’s base area. Taking this area comes with benefits, as you pass a Bouncer PU and a Seeker PU, as well as an EB PU on top of the golem’s shoulders. However, this route is a few seconds longer than the warp/tube route and you have to wait for the copter to spawn in order to take it, which could waste precious seconds. This level offers choice despite the somewhat “limiting” layout; there is always a backup plan if one plan fails. One of the great things about the design is the shortcut that can be taken only if you have ice ammo on you. It involves freezing the springs in the “spring hole”, which gives you immediate access to the top of the level. This is by far the fastest route in the level; although what’s great is that you can’t always take it – rather, stock up on ice ammo and use it to your advantage while you’re doing well. Basically, you can’t just take it straight away after spawning.
Another possible route is to go under the bases along the long tunnel where the Full NRG is situated, which is the longest route but has some advantages, as it is less predictable unless you have the flag. Be careful though, RF shots are very hard to avoid here.
The base areas themselves present interesting gameplay. While they’re fairly easy to attack, they’re also just as easy to defend. It all depends on how you play around them. Generally, the best way to attack the bases is from above with bouncer rains. Just above the bases is a good area for being RTS in this aspect as unless attackers go to the base from above through the “spring hole”, it’s generally very hard to attack someone who is camping there. If someone is camping directly on the base itself, you can “snipe” them by hitting them through the thin wall with either Bouncer of EB. There are 2 +1s, one just above each base, which although can’t be totally provided on, give you a little life support while trying to stay at the base. This level doesn’t have many areas you can hide in at 1h, so you have to keep on the move. There is however a very evil secret that is very hard to reach, but if you find it you’ll be greatly rewarded (I won’t reveal what it is, but someone probably would have found it by now :P). This level is perfect for 2vs2/3vs3, although duels can work out too.
In general, this is one of the best CTF levels that FS has released so far. I can imagine it getting a lot of attention over the following months and possibly even years. You’d be a fool to ignore this, so if you haven’t downloaded it already go ahead and do so! This gets a well earned 8.6, my seal of approval and a download reccomendation.
It’s been nearly a year since FireSworD uploaded a new level to J2O – time sure flies fast huh? While last year we were graced with Enter the Chaos (quite a controversial level, but still an instant classic), today we turn 180 from mayhem and turmoil.
Golem Landscapes brings us to a highly abstract battlefield. As FS himself explained, this level takes action on a stone golem, which is a shockingly good idea, especially with the given tileset (a recolor of Carrotus). The theme is realised very well – taking the obvious aside, you can notice that all the walls (including the ones in the background) form a logical, solid mass of rock – like a giant monolith. It’s also a very stoic and tranquil landscape – dim lighting, leaves slowly falling to the ground, and the relaxing background track, with a beat that’s vaguely like a heartbeat – perhaps to imply that the golem is asleep?
The gameplay is far from tranquil, however, as this level sports four different kinds of powerups, lots of dodge space, fast movement, and shortcuts. This layout will remind you a lot of the classic OLC CTF levels – it’s highly interconnected and very spacious. With fast routes, two +1 carrots and one full, and no place to hide, this becomes an ideal level for 2on2 matches. You can get from base to base fairly easily with the aid of warps, but you’re not going to last like that too long, as most key items are out of the simplest route. There’s a ton of situational tactics (that I’ll leave you to discover and abuse…), so every game here ought to be interesting.
This is one of FS’ best releases up to date, so go download, play it a lot, and get inspired!
This is practically a very versatile CTF-level in a while from FireSworD and OLC. This goes well for duels, but also a 3vs3 which I played here once, went smoothly. What can you expect? No disappointment at least.
The atmosphere is ambient, calm, and tranquil. What you see here is a fairly bleached mass of soil covered with moss just like a stone golem could be. The edges of the level that aren’t parts of the golem look a bit bland though. This Carrotus/Easter-edit fits really well for a concept like this. If it only had those top/bottom edges of background caves fixed, it would be perfect. This level is one of those few ones that generally look better in 8-bit rather than 16-bit colour, at least for me. 8-bit mode makes things look more transparent in a neat way and gives you a more lighter background.
What I find the most exotic about this level is the base placement. Your base is located on one of the golem’s hands, and you should attack the opposite hand. Golem’s solid body however, is there between the hands, as obvious. So, you should find a way to either go round the body, or cut through it. The warp on your hand is one of the possibilities. It takes you below the golem’s body, so that you are able to cut through it’s feet to the opponent’s side. Another option is to cut through the golem’s shoulders. You will need a copter or ice-ammo for this though to get through the ceiling springs. Generally the layout is limiting, and I like it that way. It is not a level with a dozen of small passages and mazes. Instead, you have lots of space to move around, the layout is simple enough to be learned fast, and yet you can still survive in bigger games if you know how.
The bases are kinda easy to defend, as well, you can hold flag ready for a score for a really long time against weak attackers, since you have a minor healing carrot right above your base, thus you can keep healing yourself all the time, as long as you keep getting only minimal damage. The flipper pads work great on the hands, so that you can quickly jump away if needed. If you suddenly get a critical hit, you can also go for the full energy carrot at the bottom-middle of the level, which can be very unsafe though. This was very well thought out.
There is also a half-secret shield, though getting it is really…hard. The idea is practically that you can be lucky and abuse a warp exit while an opponent player is camping the exit with seeker-ammo. If you are lucky, and your opponent is dumb, you may try to abuse the seekers so that they push you up to the shield-room. Reaching the warps themselves is already really hard though, since you require a copter for that, again. What is even harder,(barely possible) is trying to reach the shield-room straight with the copter. I managed with this once so far, but it really requires perfect timing and handling of the copter, as well a double-jump of Spaz. Now the problem with this is, that if you get in there with the flag, is that you can just never come down again and thus freeze the game. While it would make sense only if it was a time-based game where you are having the lead, it is still sort of lame, as really nothing can make you fall down, and no opponent is likely able to enter there. Good idea otherwise, though.
If this was all I had to say about the level, I would rate it really high. However, there are still some bad things as well that are mattering me. Unfortunately I’m not sure is it wise to try to fix them without a major change in gameplay.
One is that there is basically very few ammo. You must gain your ammunition mainly from PowerUps. If you try to charge into opponent base to kill the enemy flagholder without any ammo, you’ll be most likely dead very quick.
Another thing are the dead ends. Luckily they are small and contain PowerUps, so they aren’t just useless areas.
The level is also fairly Spaz-biased. Although who am I to care about that, since I am a Spaz-player?
The cut through the ceiling-springs isn’t after all as useful as it could be, because the warp-shortcuts are a bit too fast.
I’m not very sure if I find Powered up seekers fitting well for a level of this kind. They can cause much airhits in such and open level.
In overall this is a really decent, interesting and enjoyable level for everyone. It just could have been very awesome if it didn’t have those minor flaws in it. The layout is strategic, and you need it to master the level, but also you require much endurance to be faster to reach things before your enemy. I recommend this download for everyone, and hope to see it played in both Bash12 and JDC18 duels/2on2’s/events. Thank you FireSworD.
Edit: Thanks for the fixes. With them this level deserves a bit more.
This level should get to be an classic. DZ, this to ZA and ZD…
Also to CL’s mappool.
Golem landscapes has some really unique points, like the RF-powerup placement. It is really easy to get, because there are warps right over bases to RF. Camping RF will get extremely hard when multiple players are present, if someone possesses a seeker PU and uses them with the sucker tubes next to RF PU.
This level has three carrots, one full C below RF PU and two +1 C’s over bases. Carrot placement is really balanced, and even with three carrots, this level should go well with duels.
Gameplay on this level is great. This map is actually friendly to random players(excluding copters/shield). Elite players can also shine on this level, if they copter to the platform over shield, or use good thinking with the ice PU and springs. Seekering through the RF-tubes is a great offensive/defensive move.
Overall, this level has got a really great theming. It receives an over 1000 character-review from me with an 9.5 and a Download Recommendation.
Eat your lima beans, Johnny.