Nostalgia wrapped inside a new coat.
Steam’s Might & Magic sale managed to persuade me to try and step back into these games that I used to love. I played Heroes of Might & Magic 4 for many, many hours, but didn’t try the newer ones (Although… I think I tried 5 once and didn’t like it…).
Number 6 was in my wishlist, but with a sale happening for this game, I figured I should check to see other versions. I eventually decided to buy number 7’s complete edition. For fans of the series: it also comes with Heroes 3 HD Edition (only its base game though).
I was hoping I would enjoy this game as much as I did number 4 and boy did I!
Sure, I have to learn everything all over again, but the idea is the same, it just looks better now.
There are a few things different compared to what I was used to in 4. Things I have to get used to. Like, you can’t send creatures out on their own. Everything needs to always be accompanied by a hero. Also, you can only have one hero in your group now. Sure, you can have many heroes (there is a cap though), but they are all their own group. So I can’t stack heroes in a party like I used to do in HoMM 4 (healer and damage dealer!).
New for me are also the siege weapons which are used to destroy gates/walls. No more banging your creatures against a gate in this game. You can also equip your castle with a bigger variety of defenses, like archery towers or a moat.
The skills for heroes are also completely different to what I was used to in HoMM 4 and I feel like I have a lot of extra freedom now to improve my heroes the way I want.
I played the campaign for a little while, but quickly decided on doing a random map. This is where I noticed something I read somewhere before: The npc enemies seem to recruit all available heroes asap and they just run across the map like headless chickens, mostly ignoring you.
This was quite different in HoMM 4, where enemy heroes would usually start combat if you were near them (and they would more likely have a sizable army too).
The map I played lasted a lot longer than I hoped it would, because basically there are a few conditions to winning: You either wipe out the enemy entirely (own all castles and destroy every single enemy hero), or you have to own all castles for 7 days.
I eventually got to a point where I owned all castles (around 13 I think), but due to the enemy employing its max capacity of heroes, spread all across the map, I had to wait and hold everything for 7 days. That gets a little hard when you can’t put a hero in each castle and when not every castle you own is equally well defended by a big army.
Once you own all castles, suddenly the enemy gets its act together and starts attacking on all fronts. Each of your castles gets tested by the enemy with various sized armies.
I fought many, many battles and lost a castle within those 7 days a couple of times, which resulted in many, many more battles.
When dinner time came around, I finally managed to hold onto all of them, after a couple of frustrating hours. My first game won!
I think I’ll try playing a smaller map next time…
This game completely brought back the Heroes of Might and Magic feel for me and it’s definitely a fun game to play. It’s a game where I can again lose track of time and play all day long. The ending is a little frustrating, but hey, that just challenges me to find better ways to win!
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