Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Restoration of Erathia

I had always heard good things about the Might and Magic series, but somehow managed to miss all of the games in the series until the third installment. I picked it up for a song (and a smart little dance) and jumped right in.

The Might and Magic games have a ridiculous amount of lore to go along with them. Hit this link if you want to know the particulars, but to sum up: there’s a war, you need to raise an army and win.

There are a few features in this game that I would find out are hallmarks of the series.

Cities. Cities are hubs of activities. It is in the cities where most of the ’strategeries’ take place. You build training grounds to train and recruit units for your armies, trade resources, hire heroes, generate revenue, just about all of the micromanagement tasks you’d want to do. You’ll spend a great deal of time here, mostly building the buildings and recruiting/training allies.

So you raise up your army, but you need to have someone to lead it. Armies don’t lead themselves, after all. So you recruit a hero to lead your forces. Heroes are really only as strong as the armies they lead, so you give your hero some units and begin marauding across the countryside. In your travels you’ll come across enemy heroes and opposing random enemies. Taking them on will invoke the third hallmark, the battles.

Battling in this game takes place on a grid of hexagons. Each group of units is represented as a single creature with a number representing how many creatures it is. Colloquially known as a ’stack’. Heroes are stationed on the sidelines where they direct the battle and assist with special abilities. It’s up to you to use your hero’s cunning by proxy to outmaneuver and outwit your opponent to win.

Having said all of that, this game is hard. I played this game a few dozen times and was never able to finish the first mission, which is a little annoying since the mission can take upwards of several hours to complete. So I don’t actually know how good the game gets later.

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