Heroes of Might and Magic V
Heroes of Might & Magic
V was one of those games that I was actually quite antsy about playing.
Heroes 1,2 and 3 were enjoyable affairs and then we got number IV, which
more or less made me think that the game was winding down. Publisher
3DO, most likely known for the shambling Army Men franchise went down
the tubes and the game was then resurrected by Ubisoft and developer
Nival. Fans of the series are going to be very pleased with the new game
and especially its transition to 3D.
This is a great looking
game and the third dimension shift is a good looking one to say the
least. The title for those who are unaware is a type of travelling RPG,
where your character has skills that are upgradeable. This has been
significantly updated from the previous versions of the game where this
time around, your avatar is capable of six skills that can be expanded
upon along the line of your adventure.
The emphasis on the word
Heroes is apt due to the fact that there are heroes all over the
gameworld and they are vital to amassing and leading armies across the
game. Through their abilities, they can confer power to their troops,
encourage others to join their armies, and bring other skills and tricks
to the game that enhances the tactical chances of winning battles.
As you go through the
title, you will find that you can develop more heroes that are placed
around the world. These also will gather their own groups that you will
then have to keep an eye on, making this a major task in itself. Heroes
also have limited slots that can be filled with skills, so be sure that
at the end of a level that you choose them wisely. Not all heroes make
it through to the next level so donít waste too much time building up
the wrong ones.
Other things that are
being developed during the game involve cities and the buildings that
are in them. Your heroes rely on the development of new technologies and
upgrades for your troops and are quite expensive to build. Once they are
fully underway however, gamers will certainly reap the benefits of
research and the cities appear on the gameís map, acting as a great
point of reference.
Progress through the
game is made in a turn based fashion which allows for the gamer to take
control of the different units in a somewhat controlled fashion. With
the move to 3D, I found that it was actually easier to find troops and
heroes. Movement pathways for each sector are easy to navigate with a
kind of grid like layout determining each area. Battles are handled in a
strategic kind of way, similar to a gameboard in terms of layout. Army
strengths are shown by numbers underneath a particular group. As
fighting commences, unit numbers grow smaller, indicating damage done to
that area. Itís all really easy to follow and keep track of how you are
The visuals in this game
are gorgeous and if you are a disenfranchised player of the series, take
heart. Spectacular scenery, coupled with the ability to zoom in and out
of areas. I think most players will find the time to really check out
the gameworld and use the enhanced camera to check out the imagery.
Castles and other structures come to life under the gaze of the camera
and create a living breathing world.
Punters are going to be
very happy with this game for many reasons. Updated visuals, better
skill upgrade system, and a massive amount of time to get through the
game all add up to a great title that is value for money. If you were
worried about HOMM after IV, then rest assured itís back on track.