What mainline campaigns are high quality?

General feedback and discussion of the game.

Moderator: Forum Moderators

What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Poll ended at March 27th, 2020, 5:07 pm

A Tale of Two Brothers
7
3%
The South Guard
15
6%
An Orcish Incursion
2
1%
Heir to the Throne
14
6%
Liberty
31
12%
The Eastern Invasion
6
2%
Descent into Darkness
23
9%
The Hammer of Thursagan
10
4%
Dead Water
21
8%
Delfador's Memoirs
9
4%
The Rise of Wesnoth
27
11%
The Sceptre of Fire
12
5%
Legend of Wesmere
7
3%
Secrets of the Ancients
19
8%
Son of the Black-Eye
11
4%
Under the Burning Suns
28
11%
Northern Rebirth
7
3%
 
Total votes: 249

User avatar
SigurdFireDragon
Developer
Posts: 501
Joined: January 12th, 2011, 2:18 am
Location: Pennsylvania, USA

What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by SigurdFireDragon »

There is an interest in improving the quality of campaigns in mainline. To that end, it would be useful to have a better idea of where the campaigns currently stand in relation to each other.

Campaigns are listed in BfW 1.14 game order.
You may vote for any number of campaigns, but note that voting for all campaigns is equivalent to voting for no campaigns.

Replies with comments on your thoughts regarding each campaign are encouraged.
User avatar
octalot
Developer
Posts: 509
Joined: July 17th, 2010, 7:40 pm

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by octalot »

For a few of those campaigns it might be worth having options for different versions. Between 1.14.5 and 1.14.11 there are huge differences in DiD, TSG and THoT.
User avatar
SigurdFireDragon
Developer
Posts: 501
Joined: January 12th, 2011, 2:18 am
Location: Pennsylvania, USA

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by SigurdFireDragon »

We wouldn't be able to cover all cases, and undoubtedly there will be replies that are based on 1.12, 1.10 or earlier playthroughs, and other campaigns have changed since then.

Those leaving comments are encouraged to mention the BfW version for the campaign they are discussing.
User avatar
UnwiseOwl
Posts: 490
Joined: April 9th, 2010, 4:58 am

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by UnwiseOwl »

Welp, guess I'm gonna have to play through all the mainline again to make sure I'm up to date before I vote.
Maintainer of the Imperial Era and the campaigns Dreams of Urduk, Epic of Vaniyera, Up from Slavery, Fall of Silvium, Alfhelm the Wise and Gali's Contract.
But perhaps 'maintainer' is too strong a word.
User avatar
Iris
Site Administrator
Posts: 6724
Joined: November 14th, 2006, 5:54 pm
Location: Chile
Contact:

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by Iris »

What happens if I haven't played all of them on any version?
Author of the unofficial UtBS sequels Invasion from the Unknown and After the Storm (now available for Wesnoth 1.14.x and 1.15.4+).
User avatar
SigurdFireDragon
Developer
Posts: 501
Joined: January 12th, 2011, 2:18 am
Location: Pennsylvania, USA

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by SigurdFireDragon »

It's not necessary to play the campaigns to vote or comment. (There's no way of checking after all)

The aggregate of all votes and comments should provide something to work with.
It's an interesting question what % of forum users have played all the campaigns. My guess is less than 10%.
User avatar
Iris
Site Administrator
Posts: 6724
Joined: November 14th, 2006, 5:54 pm
Location: Chile
Contact:

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by Iris »

SigurdFireDragon wrote: February 14th, 2020, 10:36 pm It's not necessary to play the campaigns to vote or comment. (There's no way of checking after all)
Yet I feel it's a bit unfair for me to mark UtBS and TRoW while not having ever played SotA or most of DW, SotBE, DM and LoW, or the 1.14 versions of DiD and TSG for that matter. This kind of thing upsets the accuracy of the statistics since people can mark whatever they've played to the detriment of the other options.

Not to mention that one person's notion of the minimum quality requirement for a mainline campaign might well be far below all of the 1.14 mainline campaigns.
Author of the unofficial UtBS sequels Invasion from the Unknown and After the Storm (now available for Wesnoth 1.14.x and 1.15.4+).
Whiskeyjack
Posts: 474
Joined: February 7th, 2015, 1:27 am
Location: Germany

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by Whiskeyjack »

While I myself am holding back from voting because I'm currently doing replays, I can assure you that this is not really a measure of campaign quality (mostly because no definition or guidelines what of "quality" denotes was given). The resulting aggregate is more a measure of popularity and for such a measure it is totally fine to include the variable "not played".

(The point this thread implicitly makes by not giving any definition or hallmark of "quality" is duly noted. As is its irony.)
Under blood-red skies, an old man sits
In the ruins of Carthage - contemplating prophecy.
User avatar
MathBrush
Posts: 136
Joined: February 12th, 2018, 10:21 pm

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by MathBrush »

I'm not sure the voting is by popularity. Heir to the Throne is probably the most played campaign ever, and it has only 1 vote as of my writing this, while TRoW has 7, and I think that is pretty accurate.

I think all dwarf-only campaigns are pretty dull. Using the same 3-4 units in caves over and over again. I know complaining doesn't help, so I tried making a Knalgan campaign, with outlaws, and that was fun.

Legend of Wesmere and Orcish Incursion feel generic. LoW is huge, and literally the only thing I remember about it is murdering Saurian babies.

The Rise of Wesnoth has a fun plot and great variation in objectives. The 4 quests section was especially great, as fighting a red dragon in forests and hills is very different than fighting trolls in a cave. It's not perfect, but I think it's incredibly solid.

Descent Into Darkness (I only played the old version) similarly has varied objectives while maintaining interest through a steady progression in terms of units you can recruit.

Northern Rebirth has really cheesy dialog and overblown battles that last ages, but it also is the only place you get to start as peasants (which is great) and play as Drakes in mainline (also great). The portraits weren't great when I last played a couple of years ago.

Liberty is phenomenal. Beautiful map design, varied objectives, requiring you to make difficult decisions, varied units.

And UtBS stands alone in terms of showing people what Wesnoth is capable of, especially with the unit redesign. It's like an introduction to add-ons, and the storyline is higher-quality than the others, I believe.
User avatar
SigurdFireDragon
Developer
Posts: 501
Joined: January 12th, 2011, 2:18 am
Location: Pennsylvania, USA

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by SigurdFireDragon »

Whiskeyjack wrote: February 14th, 2020, 11:18 pm While I myself am holding back from voting because I'm currently doing replays, I can assure you that this is not really a measure of campaign quality (mostly because no definition or guidelines what of "quality" denotes was given). The resulting aggregate is more a measure of popularity and for such a measure it is totally fine to include the variable "not played".

(The point this thread implicitly makes by not giving any definition or hallmark of "quality" is duly noted. As is its irony.)
No definitions of 'quality' given since people might argue over them, and the jury that is this forum could misinterpret/not follow them anyway. That's why I made the prompt as simple as it is. The bit about popularity is one of the possible reasonable perspectives to apply to the results.
User avatar
Paulomat4
Moderator Emeritus
Posts: 721
Joined: October 16th, 2012, 3:32 pm
Location: Wesmere library, probably summoning Zhangor

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by Paulomat4 »

I voted for Liberty, Dead Water, Secrets of the Ancients, Rise of Wesnoth and Son of the Black Eye. Mainly because these Campaigns have great and interesting Storylines. I have played all mainline campaigns, although maybe only in 1.12.
Creator of Dawn of Thunder and Global Unitmarkers

"I thought Naga's used semi-automatic crossbows with incendiary thermite arrows . . . my beliefs that this race is awesome are now shattered." - Evil Earl
User avatar
doofus-01
Art Director
Posts: 3936
Joined: January 6th, 2008, 9:27 pm
Location: USA

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by doofus-01 »

I haven't played most of them recently, if ever, so there are some campaigns that might be higher quality but didn't get my vote. If this were a high-stakes or scientific study, I wouldn't have voted.

I voted for the top three, as well as HttT, TSG, SoF, and SotBE, as I remember liking them for various reasons. Even if they had issues, they had at least some aspect of quality.
  1. HttT - I don't remember the details, but recall it had enough variation internally to be interesting despite its length, at least compared to the others at the time (NR and LoW, probably). Also, as the first campaign, if it sucked I wouldn't be here now.
  2. SoF - The writing was terrible, but I did appreciate how many of the scenarios were not the cheap "defeat default AI leaders" type, and that should count for something. It also wasn't an elf campaign.
  3. TSG - I thought it was a beginner campaign, yet not a trivial one
  4. SotBE - I don't remember the story, but do recall there was at least an attempt at making the orcs sympathetic while still being orcs. The scenarios were also mostly fun.
BfW 1.12 supported, but active development only for BfW 1.13/1.14: Bad Moon Rising | Trinity | Archaic Era |
| Abandoned: Tales of the Setting Sun
GitHub link for these projects
Whiskeyjack
Posts: 474
Joined: February 7th, 2015, 1:27 am
Location: Germany

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by Whiskeyjack »

Alright, voted now.

TRoW, SotA - voted on good faith, because I hold them in good memory and they get the support from others.

Liberty - replayed the master version just for this vote - needs some balancing towards the end and some dialogue revisions, but otherwise a fun, quick campaign with decent story.

UtBS - was a lot of fun with the new units despite being an old horse otherwise. Definitively deserves the vote, although the characters and dialogue can still profit from minor adjustments.

DiD - played the updated version (1.14.9 in my case). Big improvements to the OG version, although I didn't fully get into it gameplay-wise (mostly because I'm not a fan of playing undead).

The other campaigns range somewhere between not great (HttT) and atrocious (EI). Almost all of them (and on some occasions even the above) could use a lot of story and dialogue improvements and rely on bland, stereotypical (and often inconsistent) characters to carry the player from battle to battle.
Under blood-red skies, an old man sits
In the ruins of Carthage - contemplating prophecy.
User avatar
The_Gnat
Posts: 2130
Joined: October 10th, 2016, 3:06 am
Contact:

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by The_Gnat »

The problem I believe is that the results will be skewed because many people will not upvote for campaigns they have not played, this may mean the poll reflects more "what campaigns have you played". Statistically it would be better to run a poll "what campaigns are low quality". That would provide more precise information to work around. :)
Iris wrote: February 14th, 2020, 10:40 pm Yet I feel it's a bit unfair.
Yes the same sentiment. But I doubt a poll will singlehandedly decide for a campaign to be scapped, its just useful information :P

So I have voted. I will comment around what campaigns I did not vote for:

- AToTB - fits its goal perfectly. Fun, short, good story, good beginner campaign. But not high-quality.
- AOI - same as before. The simplicity of design and lack of unique features, really interesting gameplay or deep story places it exactly where it should be as a short beginner campaign, but not high-quality.
- I didn't vote for SoTA. My reasons were entirely personal, it hit way too close to home and I couldn't continue at all. From what I saw at the start it was very well designed unique mechanics and fun to play but...
- Eastern Invasion was nice but felt like a less well done version of TSG and Northern Rebirth.
- THoT and TSoF were both very good. But I am largely biased by my love of Dwarves and I think they could use maybe small reworking around dialog.
- TSoBE was excellent but I put it on this list because it could have used a little work in gameplay in some areas but well done story.


And the campaigns I think deserve extra credit:

- Special mention goes out to Norther Rebirth one of my long time favorites. Its story always spoke to me.
- Also I am suprised to see DM not getting any love. It wasn't amazing but it had good story and well designed. It was annoying they kept dismissing your recall list but overall good campaign unique units.
- As for LoW classic and awesome. It is my first and potentially favorite campaign. I love the chapter design and for me it really epitomizes campaign. I haven't played it for sometime so can't comment on the quality of dialog but the story was really good.
- Liberty was great, probably not as good as the stats indicate but because it was shorter more people would have played it.
- DW!

doofus-01 wrote: February 16th, 2020, 3:13 pm HttT, SoF, TSG, SoTBE
EDIT: I fully agree with your comments on these campaigns and ironically it has led for me to downvote SoF and SoTBE so obviously everyone will be approaching this poll in a very different way. ^_^ ^_^
Creator of: The Reign of The Lords Era,The Gnats Franken Dungeon
Co-designer of the (not-wesnoth) space combat video game Planet Bounce.
User avatar
Edwylm
Posts: 210
Joined: August 24th, 2015, 11:18 pm

Re: What mainline campaigns are high quality?

Post by Edwylm »

Well for me its been a long time and I am used to the 1.10 version. But I shall give some feedback from 1.14.

A Tale of Two Brothers and An Orcish Incursion.
They are short and not much story driven. They feel more like filler and to help new players get used to the game. So they are one of those that I don't want to replay.

Legend of Wesmere
Its a fun campaign with being given separate leaders recruitment options which making it very unique.

Northern Rebirth
I just finished this one not to long ago. It really hasn't changed much since 1.4ish and its been one of my favorites. However in the end I feel unsatisfied.The story plot is good but it lacks the depth. The main problem is you play with the peasants and they are only used only in breaking the chains. Once you enter the caves you get to battle trolls and undead which normal peasants, bowmen and spearmen are worthless. You can use them afterwords when battling the goblin riders but it doesn't feel right because you have other better units to get and cheaper too. It doesn't feel like a peasant/slave uprising. Another is when you battle the orcs right after the defeating the lich, you then can recruit spearmen and bowmen. In reality there is no point in trying to level up your peasants. I will post more feedback/ideas in the proper topic for it.

Lastly is the dialog is a bit off. In the last battle you have Tallin talking and across the battlefield you have Hamel randomly hearing and also shouting back... this just feels wrong.

The Rise of Wesnoth
Under the Burning Suns
From what I have seen they haven't been changed much from 1.4 so they have a strong story line and plot. Besides UtBS which have different units. Currently playing TRoW to see what all has changed. As with UtBS I remember parts of the story being a pain just to play but I haven't played the campaign yet.
Post Reply