Heroes of Might and Magic III: All hail King Syp!

(This is part of my journey playing through Heroes of Might and Magic III.  You can follow the entire series on the Nostalgia Lanes page.)

king1

Balkoth pointed out in the comments yesterday that I was mistaken on the whole “hiring new heroes” thing.  The reason my option to hire a new hero was greyed out was that I couldn’t do so when I had a visiting hero in town.  Armed with that knowledge, I raise up a third army with a cleric leader, and send her to help put down this petty insurrection over in Plinth.

Meanwhile, my knight arrives at an enemy city in the north-east and finds it surprisingly lightly defended.  We take the town with minimum casualties, and I’m starting to feel as though we’re tightening the net around the bad guys at last.

Down south, my warlock division chases an enemy army right into Plinth.  This isn’t going to be a fun fight, I realize, especially when I check out the hundred-plus evil eyes and  medusas and other assorted enemies.  The battle is long and takes a serious toll on both sides, even with resurrections, but eventually I smash my enemy into the ground and reclaim the town.  Whew.

I maneuver my cleric to block off any enemy armies coming from the underground and wait out the week with my other two divisions in the cities.  With the new week comes new reinforcements, and it’s time to take this party to the underworld.

king2It’s kind of cool to see my armies finally together, moving toward a common goal.  I’m a little dismayed to find that this underground map is huuuuuge.  I was really hoping for a small coda to my adventures.

To be cautious, I start up a fourth army with a demon leader, just for backup.  I figure that I might as well take advantage of the new troops that came with the week, so I start running him between towns.

Oh, and it turns out my fears of the underground map weren’t realized.  There is only one city and it quickly fell to my warlock’s army, quickly winning me the scenario.

king3Final thoughts on Heroes of Might and Magic III

Can you believe I actually finished a game?  Sort of?  I know I’ve petered out of some of the titles in this series so far, but that’s part of the exploration.  I think it’s a good testament to HoMMIII that it kept me very invested throughout this scenario.

There’s a lot to love here, especially if you find the blending of high fantasy, RPG, and strategy appealing.  This was a good scenario to find my HoMMIII legs, because by the end I felt way more assured and confident than I did at the start.

Even today, it’s a nice game on the eyes.  The aesthetic is cartoony enough to be long-lasting, although some of the combat models and animations are a little dated.  Creating armies and tossing them against the bad guys never got old, and always competing against the enemy forces on the move kept me on my toes.

I wasn’t too thrilled with the fact that the game would pause if I tabbed out of it, which I wanted to do for the battles.  Yes, they’re kind of interesting, but some of them just go on for minutes and minutes on auto-attack, and I’d rather have been doing something else.

What I covered here was just the first scenario of the first campaign.  There are several campaigns and TONS of individual scenarios in the complete edition, which makes this one of the most content-packed games I’ve ever witnessed.  Seriously, if this sort of thing is up your alley, you will have months and months of gaming ahead of you.  It’s highly recommended.

No vote for the next game, because I simply have to return to one of my most favorite RPGs of all time.  Stay tuned next week!

 

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4 thoughts on “Heroes of Might and Magic III: All hail King Syp!

  1. Good work Syp! I usually get crushed in those games… but then again I never choose a difficulty lower than the hardest available. Yah I’m an idiot. :P

  2. Sweet nostalgia. :D

    IIRC, there is an option to immediately AI-resolve combat to the victory/defeat screen (displaying your losses and so on). It does have a massive effect on the pacing of the game though, since the tactical combat makes up a vast majority of your playtime normally. I used to play on this mode once watching the same troglodytes inch their way across the screen six steps at a time over and over got boring.

    I actually ended up preferring the fourth HOMM game (pretty sure I’m the only one), which had a much more balanced set of factions and units, more interesting skill and spell progression for heroes, flatter town upgrade trees with trade-off choices, and a better party system where heroes are units on the battlefield. It was also the last one before they went 3D, so remains the prettiest.

    And the music was so, so awesomely bad.

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