• June 2017 Regular Challenge Results

    The Hanging Gardens of Magrael
    by Mouse

    June 2017 Challenge : Re-invent the Hanging Gardens

    This month's challenge was an amalgamation of ideas from a couple of forum members, so thanks for Mouse and Wingshaw (the artist formerly known as TheHoarseWhisperer) for the suggestions.

    Diamond wrote...
    Aside from being awesome when you built it in some of the Civilization games (it gave you extra food or something, if I recall), the Hanging Gardens is just a cool idea all the way around. Mouse came up with this month's Challenge, so praise unto her. TheHoarseWhisperer had a good suggestion for it too:
    However, if everyone just maps a terraced pyramid with plants, then it might be a little dull. Maybe people could be encouraged to 'reinvent' the Hanging Gardens: that might make it more exciting. Perhaps there'll even be literally hanging gardens...

    So here's the challenge: Your mission is to take the idea of a Hanging Garden/Wonder of the World and re-invent it. You can always map what you think the literal Hanging Gardens of Babylon might have looked like, but you can also go crazy and map a miles-high wizard's citadel drenched in hanging plants, or a floating rock with the gardens hanging down to the ground, or a canyon with the gardens planted on the walls. Whatever your fertile (get it?) imaginations can come up with, really.

    Guild members focused on the 're-invent' concept and we didn't have any straight-up historical representations of Babylon's (alleged) wonder. Among our finished entries, several had a sci-fi or futuristic theme. Chashio created a rather unsettling sci-fi map/schematic titled 'Babylon Project [status: at risk]'. You'll have to figure out yourself what's happening there! Shall Teclex's entry 'Greenwater' depicted "a small post-apocalyptic settlement around an abandoned nuclear power plant." A damaged ISS was the inspiration behind icemanli186's entry 'Babylon Rediscovery', where a couple of modules broke away and were lost, and the flora inside flourished. We also had an inverted hanging gardens from timallen in his entry 'Stormbringer' which showed "a flying/floating castle surrounded by a semi-sentient garden". Back on terra firma, HadrianVI's entry 'The Sacred Gardens of Praviza' showed a cliff-side garden based on natural, rather than architectural, structures.

    But on to our winner...

    Not content with winning the May/June Lite Challenge a couple of weeks back, Mouse threw herself into this challenge too, and managed to comfortably win the poll with 'The Hanging Gardens of Magrael'. I'm not sure if we've ever had someone win their first Silver Compass, then take a Gold two weeks later, so congrats are doubly in order for Mouse! Of course this means no more Lite Challenges for her, but at least that gives the rest of us a chance...

    Mouse's map shows an area of a desert world where much of the ground-level habitat has been devoured by the local herbivores, so sentient life evolved to live in higher, rockier areas. You can see her WIP thread here.

    Huge congrats to Mouse, and a pat on the back to the other green-fingered entrants. Blooming marvellous work all round!

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