News Archives: 2007

Merry Christmas

Another year has sped by and we find ourselves at the end of it. We hope you are able to enjoy the holidays with family and friends, and if you have traveled far, a safe return. Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!


New SH2 Screenshots!

Sir_Vet has submitted screenshots of some of his Stronghold 2 maps. You can view his collection here.


Castle of the Week 124 – Cape Kaliakra

Kaliakra Walls

Kaliakra is one of the most breathtaking places along the Bulgarian shore. Stretching more that two kilometers into the Black sea, it’s known as the longest cape in the Balkan Peninsula. The word Kaliakra comes from the Greek word “καλός” (beautiful) and “άκρα” (fortress). Located 72km north of Varna and just 12 km from Kavarna, the area is close to a railroad and airways. Now largely protected, the Kaliakra area hosts a unique blend of dramatic cliffs, unpolluted crystal waters and rolling countryside. The area is famous for its dolphins and sea bird nesting sites, both of which are attracted to its secluded, undeveloped location.

Read more here. Thanks to Morbid Angel!


New Job Openings at HeavenGames!

With all of the changes at HeavenGames, several have opened up! A job at HeavenGames has great benefits in addition to the resume-building experience it offers, including:

  • Assistance in job/internship placement in the gaming industry.
  • Possible credit for those in university.
  • Personal websites (clouds) for all staff at no charge.
  • Possible access to game alphas/betas.

The current job openings are:

  • Marketing/PR Department Head
  • Art Department Head
  • Graphics Designer
  • Website Designer
  • Programmer
  • HG Main News Editor

There are also positions open in the Business Development department. Here is a short explanation of duties.

General Responsibilities: Working as a group to establish a relationship with other businesses for the benefit of HeavenGames. Projects generally formed around bundling, sponsorship, and developer exclusive opportunities.

Day to Day Duties: Working with the seraphs to get developer exclusives and improving each site with developer material, as well as sponsorships for events and contests. Also working on big projects such as product bundling, beta test hosting, etc.

Head to the the help wanted page for detailed job descriptions and please contact the CEO at socvazius@heavengames.com if you’re interested in any of these positions!


Today in History

On this day in 1282, Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, the last prince of an independent Wales, was killed after he became separated from his forces near Cilmeri close to Builth Wells. Late in his reign, Llywelyn had lost Wales to Edward I of England who took advantage of the internal strife between Llywelyn’s brothers and the desire of Wale’s lesser princes for peace with England. In early 1282, Dafydd ap Gruffydd, Llywelyn’s younger brother, attacked Hawarden Castle and Rhuddlan Castle spreading revolt across Wales. Edward I offered Llywelyn a large estate in England if he would surrender Wales and send Dafydd on a Crusade never to return without Edward I’s permission. Llywelyn sent an emotional reply wherein he declared his allegiance to his countrymen. He joined the rebellion and moved his forces from Gwynedd south to rally support in mid and south Wales where he was killed. The circumstances of his death are mysterious, but it is agreed that Llywelyn was tricked into leaving the bulk of his army and was then attacked. Llywelyn’s head was sent to Kind Edward I at Rhuddlan who sent it to London, where it was displayed at the city pillory crowned with ivy for a day. Then the ivy crowned head was carried on the tip of a lance by a horseman to the Tower of London to be displayed over its gate. This fulfilled a Welsh prophecy that Llywelyn would ride, crowned, through the streets of London.

More can be read about Llywelyn the Last here.


Stronghold 2 v1.4.1 patch available to download!

The staff of Stronghold Heaven are very proud to announce that the Stronghold 2 v1.4.1 patch is now available to download from our very own servers! You can also discuss the patch in this thread.

Many thanks to the team at Firefly for this!

download v1.4.1 patch


New Legends Screenshots

Some new screenshots of an upcoming map from Psycho Jester have been added to the galleries.

You can see more in greater detail here!


HG Podcast Pilot

Elpea from Halo Wars Heaven and Atzy from World in Conflict Heaven have put together a Heaven Game Podcast pilot with guest star Cheesewiz (Seraph of WiCH) that you can listen to here. Be sure leave comments and suggestions for improvement here.

Podcast Outline:

  • What is World in Conflict?
  • What’s going on at World in Conflict Heaven right now
  • Multiplayer in World in Conflict
  • Age of Empires III Mobile – Impressions
  • RTSs on Consoles
  • Halo Wars
  • Age of Empires’ 10th anniversary contest
  • Age of Empires in our lives

Another Article

A list of scripted events in Stronghold Legends has been made available by Lord Tanthos! It’s detailed descriptions should help any Legends map maker. You can read it here.


Today in History

In 1177, Saladin with a force estimated to be 30,000 men launched an attack from Egypt with the intent of conquering the Crusader states. King Baldwin IV, the Leper King, left Jerusalem with 375 knights to establish a forward defense at Ascalon. He was joined by Raynald of Châtillon, Odo de St. Amand (Master of the Knights Templar), Baldwin and Balian of Ibelin, Reginald of Sidon, and Joscelin III of Edessa to amass a force of several thousand infantry. Saladin sent a detachment of men to guard King Baldwin’s movements, but he did not expect any aggressive hostility from King Baldwin, since the king’s force was outnumbered several times over.

Saladin continued marching towards Jerusalem and captured Ramla, Lod, and Arsuf. This caused his forces to spread out. Meanwhile, the Crusaders managed to move out of Ascalon along the sea in an attempt to intercept Saladin before he reached Jerusalem and surprised Saladin at Montgisard. Saladin raced to reconcentrate his forces, but many of his men had not properly rested since departing Egypt and were ladened with loot. The Crusaders broke through his center line and routed his forces. Saladin was pursued until nightfall by Crusaders and suffered attacks by Bedouins on his way home.

The Crusaders suffered 1100 dead men and 750 wounded. Saladin’s losses are not as well recorded, but it is estimated that he only returned home with 10% of his forces. While Montgisard proved a dramatic victory for the Crusaders, it was the last of their successes. Over the next ten years, Saladin would renew his efforts to take Jerusalem, finally succeeding in 1187.

You can read more about the Battle of Montgisard here and here.


Poll Round-Up!

In our last poll, we asked: What do you think about the Stronghold 2 v1.4 patch?

Just what the game needed! [233 votes = 27.4%]
It’s ok. [209 votes = 24.6%]
We waited so long for this? [152 votes = 17.9%]
Um…what patch? [256 votes = 30.1%]

It seems most voters were satisfied with the last SH2 1.4 patch, but a sizable amount were not. Our new poll is about Stronghold Legends skirmish opponents.

You can see all previous poll results here and suggest ideas for new polls in this thread.


Lancelot Defused

Lord Tanthos has composed another analysis of a Stronghold Legends Skirmish opponent. This one examines the Lancelot AI’s strategy and tactics with advice on how to thrive and defeat him. You can read more here.


Today in History

According to Swiss legend, William Tell shot an apple off of his son’s head using his hunting crossbow and a single bolt in 1307. He was compelled to perform this deed, because he defied the Austrian overlord’s command to bow to his hat hung high on a pole. William Tell became a central figure in the rebellion that formed the Old Swiss Confederacy.

You can read more of Willam Tell in this Swiss History Article and here in this Wikipedia article.


Stronghold 2 Patch 1.4.1

CaptSkubba from FireFly Studios has announced the Stronghold 2 1.4.1 patch which is incremental (i.e. patch 1.4 must be installed before installing 1.4.1). It fixes many bugs that remained unfixed, created, or reverted from the last patch. You can read more in this thread. Be sure to download it!


New Stronghold Legends Article

Lord Tanthos has delivered a new article to the community concerning skirmish opponents. In this new article, he analyzes King Arthur’s strategy and tactics in skirmish games while providing the player with counter-tactics and tips to win while playing as any faction. You can read it here.


A well deserved promotion: Lord Tanthos

Although this is a long overdue appointment, I am delighted to announce that Lord Tanthos has been promoted to Cherub to cover our two newer games, Stronghold 2 and Stronghold: Legends.

He has a huge task ahead of him, however i’m confident that his knowledge and skills is exactly what we need. Please allow our newest member to find his feet and learn how to flutter, and pass on your congratulations to him in this thread.

Congratulations, Lord Tanthos!


The Gallery album for Stronghold Legends Grows

Our Gallery album for Stronghold Legends grows.
Psycho Jester gives us a fresh look at the abilities of the in game editor.
Taking the landscaping ability of the game to achieve an artistic screenshot he has created some breathtaking views.
He also takes a creative approach by using the editor to challenge our creative thought processes.

Check out his screenshots in the Stronghold Legends album.


HeavenGames’ Staff System: A Revamp

Source: The HG Blog

So now that things have been settled with HG’s identity, it’s time to go on to the fun stuff: the staff system! Woo!

It’s been discussed in a previous blog post that HeavenGames doesn’t operate as efficiently as it could from a staff perspective. A lot of issues have already been dealt with in the past several months, but there are two substantial problems that must be taken care of. First, there is no effective way to ensure quality and consistency of work across all of our sites. Second, we do not have dedicated jobs in a number of support capacities, including marketing, sales, and the like.

Revamped Staff System
The owners have thus discussed the issue with the HeavenGames staff and have come up with the following system:


As you can see, HeavenGames will still be run fundamentally the same: the Exco – chaired by the CEO – makes all of the network-wide administrative decisions and Seraphs work under the Exco as site administrators. What will be added to the system will be a Seraph Liaison and Support Departments. First, the Seraph Liaison…(Read more!)


Poll Round-Up!

It seems that King Arthur is the most favored faction of Stronghold Legends players. In our last poll, we asked: Which is your favorite Stronghold Legends faction?

King Arthur (Good) [561 votes = 33.7%]
Siegfried (Ice) [201 votes = 12.1%]
Vlad (Evil) [260 votes = 15.6%]
I don’t have a favorite. [107 votes = 6.4%]
Stronghold Legends has factions? [535 votes = 32.2%]

Our new poll is about the new Stronghold 2 patch.

You can see all previous poll results here and suggest ideas for new polls in this thread.


Poll Round-Up!

It seems that King Arthur is the most favored faction of Stronghold Legends players. In our last poll, we asked: Which is your favorite Stronghold Legends faction?

King Arthur (Good) [561 votes = 33.7%]
Siegfried (Ice) [201 votes = 12.1%]
Vlad (Evil) [260 votes = 15.6%]
I don’t have a favorite. [107 votes = 6.4%]
Stronghold Legends has factions? [535 votes = 32.2%]

Our new poll is about the new Stronghold 2 patch.

You can see all previous poll results here and suggest ideas for new polls in this thread.


Stronghold Legends Gallery Album

Stronghold 2, now has a gallery album to showcase your Stronghold Legends screenshots.
It has its first sub album with in game screenshots submitted by Lord Tanthos.
You can find them here, Stronghold Legends.
The album is open for more screenshots, discussion thread is here.


HeavenGames: A New Identity

Source: The HG Blog

After considerable deliberation, the owners have decided that one major inhibiting factor for HeavenGames’ prosperity is the simple fact that it doesn’t have a clearly defined identity. It has always been a site about games, but that is far too vague for the development of any clear goals and the effective marketing of the site.

We have thus discussed the issue with our staff and decided that we should make HeavenGames a site entirely geared towards community. At its core, HeavenGames always has been about building the best communities possible, so it only makes sense that we devote all of our resources to that service…(Read more!)


International Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Ahoy, me hearties! Aye, today be Talk Like a Pirate Day! On t’is fine day, all you lubbers can vernaculate like a pirate all day long. ‘Tis a fine way t’be speakin’, and if ye disagree, I’ll pour out my grog ever yer head, blast ya with my piece, and ye’ll be lost to Davy Jones’ Locker. Savy? So ye must speak like this until tomorrow’s sun sets-do we have an accord?

If’n talkin’ properly give yur head an ache, stab this.


Stronghold 2 V1.4 patch announced!

The Stronghold 2 version 1.4 patch has been released by Firefly. You can get it via the in game patching service, with links to alternative places to download the patch from to be provided once they aer made available.

Read this post for further details.


Amended Review Guidelines

Sulis has tweaked the Review Guidelines, adding a few select paragraphs and amending some of the prerequisites in an effort to encapsulate current thinking.

Mappers and enthusiasts alike be sure to read the current Review Guidelines here.


World in Conflict Heaven

A new heaven has been unveiled for World in Conflict!

World in Conflict is a unique RTS that takes place during a “what-if” scenario changing the cold War to World War III. The USSR invades Europe and the USA and you need to defend the country from the invasion.

The drop-in Multiplayer allows the player to pick a faction and control one of four unit roles to counter the opponent. You can join a game in progress and games can be up to 8vs8.

This new game is planned for release later this month. View the new heaven here or browse the forums here.


HeavenGames announces StarCraft 2 Heaven!

HeavenGames (heavengames.com),
the popular network of gaming fansites, has opened its latest chapter
with which to bring the real-time strategy world yet another hallmark
in game information and community: StarCraft 2 Heaven. Covering the
highly anticipated game, StarCraft 2 Heaven promises to offer
up-to-date content, the latest news, and an integrated and active
community.

StarCraft 2 Heaven (starcraft2.heavengames.com)
launched on August 25th, 2007 and already provides a wealth of
coverage, including a preview from BlizzCon, a gallery of
artwork and screenshots, news, game information, and discussion
forums. Few other sites provide such various and complete content as
StarCraft 2 Heaven!


Stronghold 2 Path of War walkthroughs complete.

We now have full walkthroughs for the Path of War for Stronghold 2! Chapter 11, Mission 2 has already been submitted by Sir Hugh and Stratego has just completed Chapter 12.

Both walkthroughs also contain saved games you can download.

Many thanks to both of you!


New Freebuild Section Added

The Stronghold 2 Heaven Downloads now has a new section for Freebuild Scenarios to contain maps that don’t have the constraints of economic objectives and scripted invasions, but rather allow for peaceful building in imaginative landscapes.


Congratulations to Sir Hugh

Today we would like to welcome
Sir Hugh
into the realm of Heaven Games Angels.
He has given this site his time and dedication,
going above and beyond what was asked of him.
His hard work and constant helpful attitude
are a wonderful asset to our staff.

Sir Hugh, works out all of bugs in our website content
and helps keep both the Stronghold Heavens running smoothly.
Sulis and I are excited to announce his promotion to Angel.
Congratulate him here!!!


HeavenGames Official Blog: The First Step

Source: The HG Blog

Hey all,

So it’s been a little while since my last update. It’s mostly because we’re still hard at work figuring out the big picture for HeavenGames’ future; it’s a daunting job but I like what’s being hammered out. Anyway, in this article I’m going to discuss the two biggest problems that I’d like to get fixed before any grand scheming…and their solutions. Solutions are good.

Problem 1: HeavenGames current staff system is not what HeavenGames needs
While everyone works as hard as possible, the current staff system is simply not enough for what HeavenGames needs. Becoming staff is a big ordeal at HeavenGames, largely because of the daunting committment on both sides…

Solution: Reorganize the staff system
Reorganizing the staff system will help our current staff operate more
efficiently. First, we will make sure that all of the owners are active at HeavenGames. Next, Seraphs will be required to heavily advertise job openings to ensure consistent service and organization across the network. Finally, we will work to make a job at HeavenGames more attractive by giving benefits such as possible college credit and aid in getting a job in the gaming industry…(Read more!)


Official HeavenGames CEO Blog Opens

Source: The HG Blog


(I’m pensive about so many things in this photo)

Hey everyone,

My name is Socvazius; I’m the new CEO of HG, but I’ve been around for quite a long time. I started visiting HG in late 1997 (at age 11), joined the staff in 2000 (my first article, a masterpiece by any standard), joined the executive board in 2003 (I have nothing to say here but I wanted to add a parenthesis for consistency), and became owner in 2005 (when I turned 18). Over all that time, I have been webmaster of 6 Heavens and have done about every possible job.

Offline, I go by the name Sergio Prado and I study history at Harvard University in Boston, Massachusetts. I am currently working in marketing at Vivendi Universal on Empire Earth III and World in Conflict. I love philosophy, history, physics and politics among other things, and to compensate for my nerdy tendencies I’ve been known to karate it up as well as do all the other things that college students do. Oh yes.

Anyway, this is my blog! While I will surely use this blog for my own narcissistic ramblings, I intend it to be used mostly to keep everyone up to date on what’s going on in HeavenGames, especially the stuff that pertains to my job: management, PR, and all the other fun parts of a gaming website. In fact, I do have some news that you guys might be interested in. For the past couple months the owners have been discussing a major revamp of how HG operates, including its staff management and exactly what services it will provide to the community. We’re zeroing in on a finalized plan, so keep your eyes peeled for a freakin huge article that’ll be way too long to be worth reading!

Until the next post my friends,
Soccy


New Stronghold Legends Scenario Design Article!

Stronghold 2 Heaven has it’s first Stronghold Legends Scenario Design Article submitted by the well known Stronghold Legends player, Lord Tanthos.

This article covers the vast variety of uses for the excellent shades and tints in the Stronghold: Legends map editor. This article will cover customized textures, new terrains, and new water, as well as creative ideas! If you want to improve the look of your maps and add some creativity, read this article.

Read more here.


HeavenGames Appoints Sergio Prado as new CEO

LOMBARD, IL – HeavenGames LLC, an internet leader in strategy fansites, today announced it has appointed Sergio “Socvazius” Prado to the position of Chief Executive Officer, effective July 28, 2007. Mr. Prado, a driven executive with considerable experience in the gaming industry, has worked at HeavenGames for 7 years in addition to Vivendi Universal’s brand marketing department. He currently is a college junior at Harvard University.

Prior to this appointment at HeavenGames, Mr. Prado served as the company’s Chief Content Officer on the executive board, ensuring the professional quality of content present across the network. He also headed six of its sites: for Age of Empires III, Age of Mythology, Age of Kings, Age of Empires, Rome: Total War, and Cossacks. During his employ at Vivendi Universal, Mr. Prado worked to market World in Conflict and Empire Earth III, two of the biggest strategy titles of 2007.

Tom Mescher, the exiting CEO, served as HeavenGames’ leader since its incorporation in October of 2000. He is moving on to continue his career in the IT industry.

ABOUT HEAVENGAMES, LLC
HeavenGames LLC (http://www.heavengames.com), based in Lombard, Illinois, is a privately owned web-content publisher geared towards the creation of special-interest sites for Real-Time Strategy and City-Builder games. Its sites, content, vast amounts of resources, as well as a dedicated staff & management team make HeavenGames’ sites recognized by developers and press alike as one of the premier destinations for gamers worldwide.


Poll Round-Up!

It appears the favorite game to play in Stronghold 2 is the Path of War Campaign followed by Kingmaker. In our last poll we asked: What is your favorite type of game to play in SH2?

War campaign [4479 votes = 34.0%]
Peace campaign [1371 votes = 10.4%]
Kingmaker [3893 votes = 29.5%]
Freebuild [2123 votes = 16.1%]
Multi-player [1310 votes = 9.9%]

Our new poll is about which Stronghold Legends faction is your favorite.

You can see all previous poll results here and suggest ideas for new polls in this thread.


Killing Frost Giants in Stronghold Legends

Ever had trouble killing frost giants while playing Stronghold: Legends? Well, set your mind at ease, for you shall now have the knowledge of all the weaponry that Firefly has graciously provided for you to destroy these monstrous foes.

We shall cover all the giant-killing weaponry provided for each faction in general, and then the giant-killing arsenal of each faction separately. Lord Tanthos takes you step by step in his article here.


New Walkthrough for Stronghold 2

Many thanks to Stratego, who has been working hard to provide the site with comprehensive walkthroughs for Stronghold 2. His latest submission is for Chapter 9, The Path of War: Lord Barclay’s Castle and the completed article, plus a saved game you can download, is available here.


Castle of the Week 123 – Warkworth Castle, Northumberland

Occupying an area if nearly six acres, Warkworth Castle is a fairly well-preserved fortification located in Northumberland, England. About one mile from the North Sea, the castle sits high atop a hill in a loop of the winding River Coquet protecting the village and its strategic river crossing. Although the Village of Warkworth dates back to at least the 8th century, the first castle was not constructed until nearly 400 years later during the mid 12th century.
Today, the castle is owned by English Heritage and open to the public most of the year. The castle has been featured in many movies including Disney’s A Knight in Camelot and various other productions.
Read more about it here.


The fluttering of little green wings…

The staff are pleased to announce a new Cherub to our ranks! Sir Hugh has been working extremely hard behind the scenes for a while, assisting us with a multitude of tasks and will help with html, xhtlm and css work on our site. Sir Hugh will also assist Lady Arcola in the moderation of the Community Forums.

Please extend a warm welcome to our newest staff member in this thread.


The fluttering of little green wings…

The staff are pleased to announce a new Cherub to our ranks! Sir Hugh has been working extremely hard behind the scenes for a while, assisting us with a multitude of tasks and will help with html, xhtlm and css work on our site. Sir Hugh will also assist Lady Arcola in the moderation of the Community Forums.

Please extend a warm welcome to our newest staff member in this thread.


Stronghold 2 v1.4 patch in the pipeline!

Yes, you read it correctly! Darren from Firefly Studios popped into the forums and left a comment or two in a thread to announce that the version 1.4 patch is being worked on right now. Further news when we get it, but you can read his comments here.


Castle of the Week 122 – Beaumaris Castle, United Kingdom

Beaumaris Castle represents the epitome of Edward I’s program of castle construction in Wales to consolidate his conquest after defeating a Welsh revolt in 1294-95 led by Prince Madog ap Llyweln.
The castle and town is surrounded by scenic beauty and is a tourist attraction not visited enough. Beamaris has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site as it reflects a significant accomplishment in the medieval art of castle building and is now in the care of Cadw, the guardian of designated Welsh heritage buildings. Read more about it here.


Changes at Stronghold Heaven

The Halos are very pleased to announce that we have two new co-seraphs at Stronghold Heaven.

Lady Arcola, who has been a member of staff here for a very long time and is known to most of you for her constant friendly presence in the forums and Sulis, a past angel here, scenario designer and article writer, are joining forces and are full of ideas, plans and enthusiasm for the site.

Please welcome them here and give them a chance to get settled in and used to their new jobs … then look for changes.

We’d like to thank Sparrow for all his hard work 🙂


Patch 1.2 Now Available for Stronghold Legends

It’s been quiet from Firefly for some months, but they’ve apparently been hard at it as a new v1.2 patch has just been released. Not just bug fixes but new features, too. Quite a list.

Quoted from Darren at Firefly Studios:

“The Stronghold Legends v1.2 update is now available to download via the in-game autopatching service. This update includes a number of new features including a freebuild mode, an awards system with over 50 awards to discover, a basic multiplayer chat lobby, improved in-game multiplayer chat, the ability to turn off fantasy units in multiplayer mode, a guard option for troops, multiplayer colour selection, an automatic horse dismount system and a the ability to customise single player data. The update also contains numerous bug fixes. Please see the readme file for a full list of new features and bug fixes.”

See a complete rundown of all the changes here.


Downloads Area Added for Stronghold Legends

Categories for submitting your custom Stronghold Legends maps have been added to the Stronghold 2 downloads section. So all you budding authors get busy and design some maps to take us beyond the constraints of the Legends Campaigns and Legends Trails, and into skirmish map worlds of your own imagination.

See the downloads page here or get more information from this forum thread.