Heroes of Might and Magic 3 is a masterpiece and is probably one of the best, if not the best, strategy games of all times.Thats game simply gets every single thing right.
Its such a shame that Ubisoft squandered the franchise to the ground, burned it and pissed over it.Well, Heros of Might and Magic 4 wasnt that great either, so it was probably the lack of talent to begin with.
But yeah, HMM 3 is an unique game.As far as I know, its an one of a kind that no one ever done anything like that before and after.A shame really.Such an amazing concept.
HoMM4 changed the direction to something not everybody liked, but actually prefer it to HoMM3. The Heroes actually do something for once, and the additions like flagable creature buildings are really nice. It's not without it's share of flaws (like medusas being clearly OP with their stoning gaze, which unlike in the predecessor kills the unit on the spot - absolutely deadly for heroes!), but neither was HoMM3 (castle was OP in vanilla version and still is pretty much the best faction, though unit costs got increased in later versions to balance it out)
Well, I think it goes down to taste.Personally, GOMM 4 wasnt a bad game.It was actually good.But it had severe balancing issues(It should be noted that I didnt play the game that much so that some issues might be just me that didnt learn the game properly).First off, whoever was at the castle defending it, and had a sizeable number of ranged units was at an enormous advantage.I mean, firing from the towers gave you so much advantage and power that it was, depending on the size of the defenders army, impossible to breach, or required you to waste all your army on it and basically lose the game.
Other thing that personally bugged me was choosing which unit you could make.By the time you reached lvl 4 units, the game forced you to choose betwenn A and B.I understand it was there to offer strategy, as in to adapt better to your enemy, but most of the time you dont know who the enemy is and how he distributed his army output, so basically you would just choose blindly which to make, which made getting the other units impossible, unless you got another castle of the same type that hasnt built the other type of units yet.I dont know, it just kills a bit of the fun, and cretes complexety for no good reason.
But the biggest flaw of the game is the heroes.Yes, the heroes were playable in this game, but that came with a major flaw:If he died, you couldnt use magic and anything related to the heroes.And unless you went for the might side of the heroes, it was stupidly easy to kill the hero.I mean, if you were magic focused, it was an one hit kill.If you tried to balance things out, you would turn up with a somewhat useless hero, because he would be no good for physical atacks(against larger armies, he would die somewhat easily), and as a magic user, he would have weak spells and its damage output would be somewhat low too.But if you went full might on him, he would be just too OP.In one of the campains I played, there was a exclusively might hero.At the end of the campain, I finished the whole map just using my hero, with no extra unit in my army.Just the hero.And he beated armies with like 1000 units, that ranged from the weakest to the strongest.It was ridiculous.In my view, the hero system was beyond broken.
And I had other several minor complains, like neutral units moving on the map(not a fan of that, but nothing really wrong with it either), the campain being really weak.Since it had no central plot or a main plot, each separeta story felt weak as it was self contained.The armies probably werent that well balanced, but then again, didnt play enough to really say one thing or the other.
Probably at HOMM 4, 3DO was already with severe financial problems, and they probably rushed the product out, since many of these problems could have been potebntially fixed with further development time, since they all mostly lead to balancing issues(with the hero system being a somewhat exception, but that could have been better made).I just miss this franchise.I want a capable developer to go there and put the effort and love needed for it to flourish again.