- by Pol
E3 2019 ongoing now, June 11–13, in Los Angeles Convention Center
Ubisoft already have its press conference and announced new subscription service Uplay Plus. This sounds interesting as currently they are offering free trial for first half month and then you can subscribe for $14.99.
Similar model to HB Go or Amazon Prime or Humble Bundle Monthly :)
“The service will launch on September 3, but players who sign up between now and August 15 will be able to get free access to Uplay Plus from September 3 through September 30,” Ubisoft says.
Additionally they have E3 sale, with 75% discounts, Might & Magic is in, though it looks that Heroes III Complete for PC/ RoE for Android are missing. You can check it here.
No, there wasn't any Might & Magic related announcement and they had already press conference today.
But at our forums, there's call for Fate of Heroes. For these who would like to influence Ubisoft, to continue with our franchise. Check and register within Discord, and ideally make your personal appearance at E3 and ask them!
This may suprise them enough, to trigger a mental note about Might & Magic Baby!*
* Marzhin's ™
- by Staff
Q&A with the Masters of Sighisoara
Back in 2009, CH member HeroofPunk announced his intention to create a whole new continent called Sighisoara. Joined by fellow map makers Maygwan and Yurian Stonebow, the team have since created a whole series of maps for Heroes III. What follows is a Q&A about how it all began, where the project is now and where it is going next ...
Tell us a little about Masters of Sighisoara, how did it all start?
"Well, for me it started with a fantasy map being painted in school. After that, I got home and realised that I wanted to create my own fantasy world, and since I had some earlier experience of map creating in the Heroes 3 Map Editor, I decided to go with that.
I also knew that I would need some expert guiding, that was why I contacted Yurian and Maygwan. It really just developed from there and I got more and more into the world that we have built up around the campaigns and scenarios."
You mentioned earlier in the thread that some custom music could be made for the campaigns, what is the current status of that?
Well, as you may know I posted a clue (I only left you with the letters PAR) in the Masters of Sighisoara main thread. Well, it actually has to do with the custom music being made.
And it is my honor to tell you that we will be getting a custom made campaign song for our third campaign (yes, there will be another one!), composed by none other than Paul Anthony Romero! So that feels very huge for us. Both Yurian and I are finding his work inspirational and I practically grew up with some of his tunes (my favorite being Necropolis town and Evil theme from HoMM3).
I have also been in touch with a friend of mine and we have together created some more customs songs to be released with Masters of Sighisoara III.
Your team just released the second campaign in the series, what do you have in the works now?
We have been working closer together and more effective then ever the latest month now and we currently are working on Masters of Sighisoara III. Map 1 is a 0.95 version for now and Map 2 is something along the lines of 0.75, map 3 is currently in a 0.25 state. I myself are in good contact with Paul Anthony Romero and have received the recording of our very own song composed by him.
We are also working on a wiki for MoS and it can be found here. It is not fully finished yet, but you can read up on storylines, quests from the first campaign, see pictures, read about certain artifacts and relics, heroes, campaigns, releases, everything will be posted and updated on there, so keep checking it out and feel free to contribute to the wikia as well!
I can already in this early state of campaign 3 tell you that we have been putting a LOT of focus on fine-tuning story lines, checking up on dates etc. And what I can tell you now is that you will be exploring 4 different islands, you will be able to search through historical documents about the entire continent and the story line will be deeper than ever before! Really looking forward to it!
Yes, we are also holding a little competition and handing out some prizes to the person who can finish MoSII - The Undead of Xerphef with the highest score. To enter the contest simply link us a screenshot of your high score in the main thread in the Round Table forum and we will contact the winner!
- by Pol
as you probably noticed, we had got a new advert to support running our site. Though sci-fi there still remain a little ties to our favourite games. Which is why we decide to give it a go.
SpaceWars is a new turn-based strategy game developed by Vesuvius — Who ran the Heroes Tournament of Honor for Homm2 through Homm6 — and is in beta on Steam. He was inspired by Heroes of Might and Magic as well as the Kingdoms MMO and Homeworld TBS, to create his own hex-based tactical game but in a science fiction universe. It has recently opened up for early access beta, and he wanted to have the Homm community experience it.
Celestial Heavens community members who join up can get $10 in credits for in-game purchases, though the game is free to play, and one can achieve top level without paying.
Come try it out, the game has no publisher yet, so it is only known through word of mouth.
You are all welcome!
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- by Kalah
Julien "Marzhin" Pirou Q&A
April 10th, 2011.
CH: 1. Will the player have the opportunity to customize the game mechanics (e.g. activate/deactivate the area of control, enable/disable town conversion)?
Marzhin: "We're still working on the actual options that will be available to customize the game experience outside of the campaign. What is possible today is to create maps without Areas of Control in the editor. If there is no control point in an area, then mines work the same way they did in the previous Heroes. You can also block the ability to convert towns, so it's possible to create "old school" maps. The only things that won't work without Areas of Control are the neutral dwellings."
CH: 2. How did you decide which towns/units were going to make it into the game?
Marzhin: "That was decided pretty early during development (even before my arrival on the project). The game designers thought about what factions would be interesting and unique to play, and then they conceived the unit line-up according to the faction's gameplay."
CH: 3. Do you plan for a strategic mode view? Like "2D" view from above or lowly skewed angle in the battles and alternatives to "View Air&Earth" in the overall map?
Marzhin: "In H6 we brought back the "kingdom overview" screen, where you can see a larger, more detailed minimap. You have different layers that can be activated or deactivated if you want to only see the mines, towns, areas or quest locations, or all at once. It also summarizes the towns you own, your heroes, the creatures available for recruitment and the resources produced each turn.
As for the in-game view, you can zoom out more than in H5. It's not a 2D view, but you have a better sense of your surroundings."
CH: 4. Is it possible to do terrain "terramorphing"? I.e. that the ground can change to look like it actually belongs to the faction that owns the nearby castle; Inferno would change the ground to lava, Necro to cursed ground etc.?
Marzhin: "Currently the ground below the town changes to reflect the faction, but not the whole Area. On the other hand, the unique building of each faction can cause interesting effects on the Heroes travelling in the Area. So having an Inferno or Necro town in an Area does have an effect on the terrain – only it's a gameplay effect, not a visual one."
CH: 5. How was the decision making process concerning the number of male/female units?
Marzhin: "Once again, pretty early-on. Having more female units was a design choice done when the line-ups were being revised. Ashan is a world of equal opportunities after all."
CH: 6. Ubi mentioned they might release a preview of the new editor before the game. Have they decided on that?
Marzhin: "It's something we'd really like to do. However, there are a number of things that must be considered – most notably, the security of such a release (since to make maps you basically need all the assets of the game). We're still looking for the best solution."
CH: 7. Is there a chance simultaneous could return – if not in H6, then some day?
Marzhin: "I have no definitive answer on this right now, but clearly it would be a logical feature to add in a patch or add-on."
CH: 8. How will the difficulty system work – will the AI "cheat"?
Marzhin: "The H6 AI is still a work in progress, but obviously we'd like to have something better and "cleaner" that the one in H5. I can already tell you the AI turns are way faster this time around.
Also, in H6, the AI will cheat much less and less obviously than in H5. It doesn't cheat at all in Easy difficulty, and not too much in Normal either. In Hard, the AI will lose less troops and will receive some extra resources. That's all. But honestly: the AI always cheats in strategy games - I have yet to see a game where the AI doesn't cheat.
As far as difficulty is concerned, there are the classic difficulty levels, plus it's possible to customize the details (amounts of resources, strength of neutral stacks ...)."
CH: 9. What can you tell us about human-AI interaction, say, in an alliance ... can they communicate (like "attack now", "send me money", "explore here" etc.); will you be able to watch your AI allies moves?
Marzhin: "It's not possible to interact with the AI, but of course, you can send resources to allied AI players and see their movements."
CH: 10. How far along is the town screen, and will it be animated?
Marzhin: "We know there is a lot of confusion and worry in the community on this subject. Here is all I can tell you about the current town screens at this point:
- The town screen is actually a town window. It is designed to remain the same size whatever your screen resolution is, even if you use a 16:9 monitor.
- The town visuals will be animated and are what could be described as "2.5D".
- Each town has its own musical theme (as usual).
- The town visuals change when you build stuff (although in the current design, not all buildings appear).
- Building and recruiting is done through the window interface, rather than clicking on the buildings directly."
CH: On a less serious note ... You entered this business as a fan; what is your favourite PC game of all time?
Marzhin: "It's hard to pick only one ... I hesitate between Fallout and Dungeon Keeper. And there's also Heroes of Might & Magic II and Might & Magic VI, of course."
CH: How exactly did you get this job, and how did your mom react to the big news?
Marzhin: "Well as you know I've done the Legends of the Ancients campaign for H5 (hosted here on CH). Before that, I did countless maps for H2, H3, H4, WarCraft 2 and 3, StarCraft, Duke Nukem 3D, Unreal Tournament, even Freespace 2. Those were the days before Internet was widely available here in France, so my maps were mainly used by my friends in our local LAN club.
Back to LotA, someone (I don't know who) forwarded the link to the campaign to someone at Ubisoft, and a few days later I received an e-mail from Fabrice Cambounet who said he liked what I did and wanted to give it the "Seal of Approval". Later, Ubisoft needed someone to do the Dark Messiah map for the Complete Edition. Fabrice and Erwan contacted me. They were satisfied with my work on this map (done under a very tight deadline), so Erwan told me: "When we do Heroes VI, we may contact you again". And he did.
As for my parents, they are pretty zen about it. My father is a big fan of Heroes so he waits eagerly for Heroes VI. Funny thing considering he was the "playtester" of my very first H2 maps."
CH: You know how fans like to shorten names, like Ubisoft + Nival = "Ubival". How do you like the name "Ubihole"?
Marzhin: "I think it's a name that has depth."
CH: Which is the better Wonder Woman, Lynda Carter or Adrianne Palicki?
Marzhin: "The best Wonder Woman is, without a doubt, the one Adam Hughes draws (but his Catwoman is even better)."
CH: Was it a mistake not to get del Toro to direct "The Hobbit"?
Marzhin: "I think Del Toro's Hobbit was going to be something very special, and it's unfortunate he left the project. But I'm confident his next films will be amazing anyway (too bad Universal canned "At the Mountains of Madness"). I really love his movies. I think he's one of the most creative filmmakers out there, one of the few who managed to cross the gap between great entertainment and artistic vision.
Actually, I was lucky enough to exchange a couple of e-mails with Guillermo a few years ago (when he was less busy), and then to meet him in person (albeit briefly). Not only is he incredibly talented, he's also a genuinely nice person."
CH: What is your favourite drink, your favourite sexy actress, and do you prefer fresh mozzarella on your pizza, or that rubbery stuff Pizza Hut use?
Marzhin: "I unfortunately drink way too much Coca-Cola Zero. I suspect I'm addicted to that stuff. And fresh mozzarella of course. Although I'm not sure what a "Pizza Hut" is – is it related to the place where strange hermits give you quests?
As for my favourite sexy actress, I'd say Zooey Deschanel."
CH: What do you like most about working on the "inside"? Don't tell me - there are wild parties, aren't there ...
Marzhin: "You know, the usual – sex, drugs and rock'n roll. Or so I'm told – nobody invites me to those parties. So I go to the Ubi association of Cthulhu worshippers instead. There's a ritual sacrifice every Thursday, and they have cookies."
CH: I'd also like to ask you for your shoe size, whether you like fresh or dried pasta, and whether you prefer the new or the original "Battlestar Galactica" – but I understand if you consider those questions to be too personal.
Marzhin: "44 (European standard). Fresh pasta (preferably Penne, with Carbonara sauce).
As for "Battlestar Galactica", the original had its charm, but I prefer the recent series, especially thanks to actors like Edward James Olmos or the great James Callis. Contrary to some, I thought the ending was satisfying and managed to wrap up the story decently. Not a mind-blowing finale, but it did the job. Of course there were some plot holes and stuff left unexplained, but I actually didn't mind. I think movies nowadays try to explain too much.
But anyway, who needs "Battlestar Galactica" when you can have "Doctor Who"? Steven Moffat is an amazing writer and I just love Matt Smith as the eleventh Doctor. He had big shoes to fill after David Tennant's departure, but he really created a unique, fun and likeable version of this iconic character."
CH: Semi-serious, then, to round off the interview: What's the future of Might and Magic, in the RPG area, future games ... where do you think we'll go from here?
Marzhin: "What I can tell you is that Might & Magic does not stop with Heroes VI. If I say more they'll send Ezio or Altaïr after me ... As for a new M&M RPG, there's not a single day that passes without me harassing ... I mean, politely advocating the need to make a new one.
A big thanks to Marzhin for taking the time to answer some of our questions. We are eagerly anticipating the upcoming release of Heroes VI, and you just know that having guys like Julien on the inside is going to be a good thing.
- by Pol
This is a great news for all map makers. At heroes3wog.net they are making map competition. This time it's "easier" you shall create just a map fragment, size is determind by 1280×768 to 1920×1080, aka one HD mod screen size.
And an obligatory choice of map version is HoTA.
As in any right contest, there are prices, delivered from GoG.
Contest is running till May 31st 2019 at 12:00 PM
Happy Map Making!
- by Staff
A month ago, we submitted a list of questions for the Ubisoft representative responsible for communication on Might & Magic, Irina Kassina. Since then, a few things have happened, but there is still a need to get something cleared up. So, without further ado, here is our Q&A with the M&M production team:
Might & Magic Community Developer Irina Kassina
There has been near-total silence on the game from producers and developers alike for the past five or six months, a mysterious and worrying phenomenon unprecedented of post-launch periods in the Heroes series. This has caused the Community of fans, who consider the game to be a failure, to become absolutely furious and now something even worse has happened: they have given up. Most of the forums are in fact quiet because the fans have abandoned the game. Also, hardly any fan made maps are being produced, unlike the situation after the release of Heroes V.
Taking even a cursory glance at the rage evident at the game's official forums, we observe a considerable disconnect between the game's developers and its customers. Very few posts are made by the producers and/or the Community Developer, nor can we trace any activity worth mentioning on the fan sites. This is very different from the situation of Heroes V, during the production of which the producers frequently volunteered their opinions. We therefore feel that harsh criticism is warranted and well deserved, and that the Community has need for answers to the following questions:
CH: 1. What is your reaction to the knowledge that most of the fans have already abandoned the game and will you do anything to rectify this situation?
Answer: "The opinion of the members of the various communities is very important to us, but they represent only a part of the whole of Heroes players. We gathered a lot of feedback on the game after the release on the forums, websites, the Facebook page and also through the post-launch survey that was answered by more than 20.000 players. One thing that really comes across is the fact that not everyone plays Heroes the same way or for the same reasons. A vast majority of players completed the single player campaign, played some skirmish maps and moved on to other games, just as they did on the previous instalments of the series.
That being said, we agree that the post-launch support for Heroes VI has been disappointing so far. We had to look for a new developer to take over the patching duties, and that made things more complicated (and slower) than expected. But this period of uncertainty is now over and we are back in the saddle, working to improve things.
In any case, we consider Heroes VI to be our baby. Sure, it was born with flaws, but we'll use any opportunity to make sure he eventually turns into a fine, healthy young game."
CH: 2. As the current M&M Community Developer, can you tell us the reason for the lack of Community activity from the producers and yourself? What is the cause of this silence and will it be improved upon?
Answer: "Over the last 6 months Community activity was not as high as we'd like to see it. While we've organized some events after the launch of the game, shared with the Community some interesting news, communicated about patches, our planning, a few Q&As have been made by the team and so on, I would agree with you that Community experience could be still more exciting. For instance we'd like to see more maps created by the Community and it is something we are currently working on (Map Editor will be improved along with the patches' releases). It is only one part of our plans, more will be revealed pretty soon.
It is important to notice as well that communication channels change all the time, but our engagement to take into account fans' feedback remains the same. The forum VIP was created exactly for this purpose and it is of a great value for us as opinions explained there are really representative of what the whole Community would think about different matters.
There is a team dedicated to the Community as well (Community managers, forum managers, moderators, customer support and Community developers) which is striving to create a solid link between players and developers. As I'm working with the production team, it is easy for me to get the information you are looking for (when there is an answer ready to be revealed of course). So, feel free to challenge me about anything related to Might & Magic.
The M&M production team is always eager to know what's your opinion about different stuff and to give you a better insight into what's going on in here, we are working on devs' diaries, Q&As (like this one), gameplay videos. Basically all of this is done in order to keep in touch with you."
CH: 3. You have made several design decisions intended to streamline the game and attract a wider audience, but despite Community managers trying hard to maintain activity, we see no evidence of such an audience. In light of that, can you tell us in general terms how well the game has sold? Has it exceeded your expectations, done "OK" so far or proven a flop?
Answer: "Despite a changing PC market, Heroes VI performed well, and even exceeded our expectations in some areas. Without delving into specific figures, it was the strongest launch of any Heroes or Might & Magic game, but has not yet reached our original expectations."
CH: 4. According to the Amplitude Studios website and apparently-former H5 and H6 writer Jeff Spock's Twitter comments, several fairly notable members of Ubisoft's production team left the company midway through Heroes VI's development to start up their own independent studio. What was the reason for their departure? Do you think it has harmed Heroes VI?
Answer: "Production on Heroes VI spanned 4 years and in such a long period there will always be some turnover and internal changes. That doesn't mean these seats remained empty – Ubisoft being a big company, one person leaving does not have the same impact as it would have in a small development studio. It's always sad to see talented and energetic people leave, but sometimes in life you meet opportunities (in that case, creating your own company) you just have to pursue.
In any case we wish them the best and their project looks very exciting. As for Jeff, he's an independent writer, so while he's indeed not the lead writer on Might & Magic anymore, he's still working with us on some unannounced projects."
CH: 5. Given the previous question, we are wondering what it is like to work with a Might and Magic brand under Ubisoft. What are the guidelines dev teams are instructed to adhere to and how free are they to follow their own ideas and communicate them to the world?
Answer: "As you know, the Might & Magic IP spreads to several games, which can be developed by different companies. That’s Nival on Heroes V, Arkane on Dark Messiah, Capybara on Clash of Heroes, Black Hole and now Limbic on Heroes VI, etc. All these games were developed in close partnership with Ubisoft producers and experts who work within the (appropriately called) Ubisoft Partners studio.
We soon realized we had to really give a "framework" to the studios and precise guidelines about the world of Ashan and its denizens, and validate the designs they create. This approval mainly touches upon art direction, but game design as well. For instance, a Vampire creature shouldn't attack with Fireballs, even if a game designer suddenly feels this would be awesome. That being said, we're always open to new ideas brought by developers as long as they are consistent with the IP. And while we have documents describing what the "high-level" game design of this or that Faction should be, they are just guidelines and we've always welcomed discussion with the developers if they are against a feature or want to bring something new to the table. And they are free to discuss these ideas with the Communities if they wish to do so, as long as it doesn't clash with the established PR plan."
CH: 6. There were a lot of rumours about Black Hole before you announced their substitution with Limbic Entertainment. Now, it seems to spread to other media. We wish to give you a chance to comment, but mostly we want your assurance that you will continue to improve the game: what are the plans for future support for Heroes VI?
Answer: "We cannot make any official comment about Black Hole. What is important is the fact the patching plan is underway with Limbic, and we haven't forgotten the promised towns creens as well, which will of course be released in a free patch. We have plans beyond that but it's too early to give the specifics."
CH: 7. The fan sites have a fairly general consensus as to what can be done to salvage Heroes VI. What do you think are the most important new/changed features needed for the game to evolve and survive?
Answer: "From what we've read, there are actually a lot of different opinions as to what could improve Heroes VI, so it's far from a "general consensus".
On the low-level changes, our plan is firstly to work on balance itself: make the abilities more relevant, reduce the power of Healing/resurrection spells, make the Core units more vulnerable, increase the damage of the spells. This should be seen in the future patches. In the long run, we also want to promote the differences between the Might and the Magic heroes, and between the Factions themselves. We know a revamp of the Skill System, Sim Turns and RMG are important features for the Community, so they are high on our "backlog" of features to add in the future."
CH: 8. The Map Editor is being worked on. That's good. But fans also want a Campaign Editor in order to make bigger and story-based sequence maps with carryover heroes/artifacts. Given that Heroes VI is based heavily on campaigns, is there any chance of ever getting a Campaign Editor released?
Answer: "We cannot promise anything but the Campaign Editor is one of the features we'd like to add to the editor somewhere along the road. You can bet Julien is bringing this subject back to the table at every meeting."
CH: 9. Given the mediocre success of Heroes V and the thoroughly unimpressive release and post-release stages of Heroes VI, the Community strongly questions Ubisoft’s commitment to the Heroes series – it looks like you want to move on to something else already. To what extent are you focused on Heroes VI and shepherding the game to a more satisfactory state?
Answer: "Heroes V has actually been the most successful Heroes game of all times in terms of sales, and proved to be a very popular game. It sold more than Heroes III for instance. Might & Magic is an important brand for Ubisoft, and we have no plan to abandon it. That includes Heroes VI and the Heroes series as a whole. H6 was meant to be the flagship of the Might & Magic brand for 2012 and beyond, and while it was not the game we dreamt it to be (not yet, anyway), it still paved the way for more Might & Magic in the very near future."
CH: 10. Do you have any plans, vague and unofficial or otherwise, for direct sequels to the Heroes series beyond Heroes VI, or other games in the M&M franchise? If so, roughly when do you intend to realize these plans (near future, distant future)?
Answer: "At the time you'll be reading this Q&A, we'll have launched the Beta for Duel of Champions, a card game in the Might & Magic universe developed by the teams at Ubisoft Quebec. While the Beta is for the moment only available in France, the game is already generating a lot of feedback and enthusiasm in many communities worldwide. And it's only one of the many projects we are working on, some big, some small, all bringing something new and exciting to Might & Magic. 2012 and 2013 are going to be busy years for us."
CH: 11. How would you evaluate your current relationship with the VIP fans? What would you say is their opinion of the game and your handling of its development? Do you think there is any point to communicating with the VIP fans or have they failed in their role?
Answer: "You have to remember that making a game is a collaborative effort between us, the development studio and the VIP fans. The VIP fans have been the representatives of the Communities and always acted as the voice of the rest of the fans. Now the constraints of game development meant we could not always implement their numerous feedbacks, much to our regret. In any case, we have no intent to close this forum and we'll continue to work with the VIPs as much as possible on the future projects of the Might & Magic brand."
Celestial Heavens would like to thank Irina and the rest of the team very much for their time.
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- by Pol
They released a new version, with fixes, new SkillWheel and and possibility to replace new Treeant with the ToTE one. You can grab it here.
Might & Magic: Heroes 5.5 (RC11) - Fixes rare gamebreaking issue of cursor flickering/flashing and game not possible to continue. Released Mar 23rd, 2019.
MMH 5.5. Skillwheel
Most notable changes:
+ spell pane - Spells that can be Empowered now include empowered damage and mana stats.
+ spell pane - The 8th spell slot now presents magic guild summoning and formulas for each creature.
+ spell pane - Adventure pane now includes "Town Management" skill variations.
+ town pane - Bloodrage skill description.
+ town pane - Magic guild creature summoning and dragon blood description.
changed - town pane - highlights are rearranged into more meaningful manner.
+ hero pane - Betrand moved from Knights to Renegade class.
+ hero pane - Betrand does not have Curse spell.
+ hero pane - Iron Lord/Maiden spec description.
+ hero pane - teleport assault description.
+ hero pane - Barbrian classes "Khan" and "Veteran" buttons hover now has subtext referring to having access to 13 skills.
+ global - Fonts issues for english and russian.
+ artifact pane - axe of mountain lords description.
+ artifact pane - mini artifacts values now present the current game values.
And file to get back ToTE Treeants, in case that you don't like vanilla ones - which were removed for license reasons.
HoTA Factory Town Teaser
HoTA team released new factory teaser, which you can watch here. So what is in? (Aaargh, these terrain colors. Looks like you will have them burned into your retina forever after hours of playing...) New Factory town will be probably made ready around New Year's Eve - the date is flexible and nothing is yet to be set in the stone.
Factory is supposed to be neutral faction, with new heroe classes Bounty Hunter and Gunslinger. That terrain is not only vaguely similar to H2 wasteland.
Heroes Orchestra concert to celebrate Heroes III 20th year anniversary
To celebrate Heroes III. 20th year anniversary, there was arranged concert by Heores Orchestra in Poland. There are two videos from them on YT, check them out from their channel. I heard, that one tune from HoTA squeezed in too.
Cosplayer Vera (alias Oichi) set out cool pictures of H5 Shaman, mmm, there! With more images available from heroes3wog.net even some comparision. The pictures are not HoTA but certainly they are hot.
And if you cannot have enough of H3 maps, you can even get a T-shirt with them. Pretending that you are a Dungeon Overlord. Yees, these still rule!
Would you wear them?
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- by Znork & Kalah
Znork was one of the people who recently visited Paris for a fan day with the dev team. With him, he brought 10 questions asked frequently by the fans. Here are the answers - which will also be made into a video soon. I have translated the answers for your convenience - if you wish to read the Q&A in original Znorkish, visit the forum.
A video of the interview is available here.
Question 1: (by znork)
When are you going to understand that the "always online" feature is a sure way to piss off your customers?
We were trying to make more than an offline game - we would have liked the user to be online when they played the game but there were some shortcomings. We were working for the offline game to have classic play like Heroes of Might and Magic V and we wanted the Conflux to be a new Heroes experience online. The incentive would be that the online part would add more fun gameplay like ladder and achievements. The quality of the online server was not up to what we were hoping for, but we are working on making them better. We do want to keep the online part of the game and make it better - and as a part of this we are are fixing the online/offline save games so that the online experience will be better even when the server is down.
Question 2: (by znork)
Do you realize that the game's being poorly balanced and having lots of bugs, and your being slow to patch it after release, have made the fans even more angry?
Yes, we understand! There have been lots of problems with the game and there have been lots of problems with patching due to the transition from Black Hole to Limbic. We really understand that this angered the fans, but we still believe the game has potential. We are now starting to improve what needs to be improved in the game. We had some problems at the end of the production because of the budget, but in the end we released the game as good as we could with the resources we had. It's really good that we can release patch 1.5 with balancing, online-offline save compatibility and much much more.
We understand that fans were angry. We now have one person dedicated to balancing the game, reading the forums and just changing the numbers. He has also been working with the VIPs to improve the balance. There are lots of things we would like to improve; we have over 100 issues we would like address. We are not going to do them all, but we are really now working on doing as many of them as possible. We have improved the patching process and we now feel that this is going a lot smother. We are no longer in crunch mode, but are now looking at what important stuff can we do to improve the game.
Question 3: (by kingimp)
Do you not realize how badly you have turned off the majority of long-time Heroes fans by charging an exorbitant amount for this DLC when you haven't even proved you can properly fix this broken game first?
We really wanted to some support and patching before we released content people would have to pay for. Fixing the game is our number 1 priority. We believe the adventure pack is reasonably priced by how much gameplay the customers are getting and we have kept to the industry standard on the pricing. We believe you really get a lot form the adventure pack. The prices will of course drop as times goes.
Question 4: (by kingimp)
How about giving us this DLC for free as a sign of goodwill for releasing a product that in essence was no better than a Beta?
There are 15 people working on supporting and improving the game, and they need to get paid. But we believe the adventure pack is good and people should give it a chance. We would also add that patch 1.5 adds a multiplayer map from the adventure pack for free.
Question 5: (by kingimp)
Are there any plans of simplifying the map editor at all?
Yes, there are! When we were working on Heroes VI, there were a lot of things we would like to improve; the map editor was one of these, but since the end of development was as it was, we sadly did not have the time. One thing to know about the map editor is that it is a very powerful tool. The main issue is a huge gap between the hardcore map makers and the casual map makers. We are now trying to make the map editor more rewarding and pleasing to use. We are no really working on this, but it will still be a complex tool. This will be on the main topics we will be working on the next 3-4 months.
Question 6: (by Fyrestorme)
What was the primary motivator for making weapon artifacts tied directly into the dynasty system?
There were two obvious reasons for that: we wanted something that was powerful and part of the game. We also wanted something to be highly visual in the 3D models. That was why we also added dynasty pets for Heroes VI.
Question 7: (by Fyrestorme)
If you were to make another Heroes game in the future, what types of things did you learn from H6 that you would apply to it?
Try not to release an unfinished game! We could have long list, but we will try to get a more global answer. Area of control worked very well. The reputation system did not work so well. The skill sytem was not good enough and we would like to improve that. We are very concerned about the quality of the Conflux and want the service to be improved but not removed. The story part the game was not very good, but we believe the adventure pack will show how much we have improved the story telling. We are talking about resources, spell books and things like that and we are listening to what the Community is saying. We believe we lost something making the game too rational. And we would be having town screen right from the start!
Question 8: (by Gabryelxxx)
Are we ever going to get the free DLC with the Academy faction that Black Hole promised back during the beta?
We do remember this, and we know this is based on miscommunication. But there is a lot of things going to happen, and we have plans.
Question 9: (by broui)
Used to be that when we clicked on a destination point for our hero to travel, you'd know how many turns it would take to get there. Got plans to put that back in?
We've actually been asked this question twice. I'll have to take it back to the team, see what's possible and get back to you on this topic.
Question 10: (by broui)
Is Crag hack the only classic hero on tap for a return?
There is a lot of other heroes we would like to return to Ashan. But only time will tell. You'll have to buy the adventure pack.
To read Znork's early H6 preview, posted after the Budapest fan day in January, go here.
For more Q&As, see this page.
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- by Pol
It's here. Heroes III. of Might and Magic were first released on February 28, 1999. Feeling nostalgic, so much time passed, so much Windows OS too, and the game is still alive.
It's not the same game, need to say. The first released part was Restoration of Erathia, which is the only, where source codes remained to these times, to be later remasterd by Ubisoft and released like Homm3 HD. To both, good and bad. The good part of Ubisoft version is having better graphic and comes with mobile version. The bad is no propagation now, apart for discounts and not a new fuel in sight. They say, that it's too costy.
RoE originally comes with more innovative ideas, which were later cut out for balance purposes. The last remnants were removed with the first patches. Being 'Unluck' could halve your damage, imagine what Arch Devils could do with it. And having Eagle Eye allowed you to learn and cast spells at higher difficulty. So you could 'Blind' more units at once, nifty!
"But to see its occurence, you needed to play the game for months."
And without doubt it comes with one of the best intro video in the industry. It simply catch your heart, to help Queen Catherine Ironfist to led her forces against scheming Dungeon Overlords. Old world of legends defiled alive before your eyes.
Later the game was accompanied with Armageddon Blade and Shadow of Death. Featuring first assembled artifact Armageddon Blade and balanced Fortress and later everlasting hero Sandro, and his way to power and ..over.
That lore and mechanic just defined the heroes genre. Spurred talks and been an incentive for thousands of map makers. The possibility to make your own stories was so refreshing, that the game live to these days. Of course, it wouldn't be entirely possible without its predecessors.
How to celebratie it today? By playing it!
You can play it on mobile phone, either like Heroes 3 HD or H3C with VCMI. You can go 'wog' with ERA2 or 'mp' with Horn of the Abyss. And you can also try to play Heroes 2 in rather Heores 3 world in the Succession Wars. Or moving aside with VCMI. In most cases, with use of HDmod by baratorch.
Long Live the Queen!
ERA2 - is a successor of WoG, having many scripts which you can enable or disable to make you happy and experiment
VCMI - is another engine not a mod, still not final but very stable.
Horn of the Abyss - is spinning all about the base game and multiplayer. Definitively not any scripts to play with.
Succesion Wars mod - brings Heroes II. mood in Heroes 3 coat
HDmod - allows you too play the game on current monitors, without resolution and color depths requirements
And HDmod can be accompanied with SP Plugin - if you prefere to play single player only. HDmod is compatible with pure Heroes 3 Complete or with Horn of the Abyss or with ERA2
Post Scriptum: If you would like to ponder over some questions, there's a list of related interviews from 2018:
Interview with NWC: Greg Fulton about Angels, Gelu and Heavenly Forge
Interview with Marzhin (in russian only) - Part 1, Part 2
Q&A with Erwan Le Breton on AcidCave.net
Videointerviews with Tim Lang by Super Goober
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