Rating: 85 Reviewed by: The Original ShadarLogoth.com
General Geometry Notes:
Though generally simple, the geometry here manages to do an impressive outdoor level without causing a significant framerate drop. It looks mostly realistic; the cliffs are a bit too square and sheer, possibly, but this does not cause major problems.
Geometry Detail Notes:
The watchtower in the center is very well-done, and although it does not use a great variety of brushes it weaves them together into a cohesive structure. The new portal stone is a nice touch.
There is not a great variety of texturing, but then in this case a great variety of textures would not look very good. Although the changes between textures are very abrupt when closely examined, at a casual glance they flow together smoothly. The tile textures are good, as is the texturing of the portal stones. The only complaint is the skybox, which compared to the rest of the level is not very impressive; two-dimensional backgrounds are somewhat drab, and from the high vantage points that are available in the level it is possible to see the division between the walls and the floor of the skybox. This detracts from the effect of the level.
Lighting appears to be more for mood than for realism, which is perfectly all right. The lighting effect for most of the level is somewhat confusing, but also appealing. The light levels are unequal on the two plateaus than on the ground, as well. However, the disparaties in the lights also serve to disguise the texture transitions and thus render them unnoticeable.
Sound / Music
Sound and Music Notes:
This is the first Arena level ever made to include music. Unfortunately since music is disabled in online play this is somewhat useless, except that it makes the reviewer happy. The ambient wind noises are good as well, as are the point sources of the portal stones. My long hours of exhortation to include sound in levels have finally paid off in full.
There aren't a lot of angreal here; only enough to sustain a small battle. However, this being a fairly small level and being an outdoor one, a small battle is all that's likely to appear here. The placement of angreal on colored tiles embossed with the Aes Sedai symbol is not particularly realistic, but it does look good and provides a visual clue as to the spawnpoints.
Playability - Scripting
Play Scripting Notes:
The scripting has been done nicely. The teleportations are not quite as fluid as with the Legend portal stones, but it isn't noticeable unless you stand still while teleporting.
Playability - Theme
Play Theme Notes:
The theme is good, and well-implemented, though a few realism problems make minor detractions.
Playability - Style
Play Style Notes:
A certain degree of knowledge of balefire jumping helps greatly in this level, but can be done without if the player is willing to forgo the chance to get at one angreal spawnpool.
Playability - Fun
Fun Play Notes:
This is certainly a very fun level, and should be standard on server rotations.