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Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Restoration of Erathia

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Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Restoration of Erathia
Heroes 3 front
Development
DeveloperNew World Computing
Publisher3DO
DesignerGregory Fulton
Jon Van Caneghem
PlatformsMacintosh, Microsoft Windows, Linux, Dreamcast (cancelled), Gameboy Color (as Heroes of Might and Magic 2)
ReleasedFebruary 28, 1999 (MS-DOS)
December 20, 1999 (Linux)
December 21, 1999 (Macintosh), December 2000 (Gameboy Color)
Attributes
GenreTurn-based strategy
Mode Single-player, Hotseat Multi-player, Network Multi-Player
Media 1 CD-ROM, 1 Cartridge
InputKeyboard and mouse
Previous game (release)Might and Magic VI: The Mandate of Heaven (1998)
Next game (release)Might and Magic VII: For Blood and Honor (1999)
Continuity
UniverseOriginal universe
SettingAntagarich, Enroth
Previous game (chronology) Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Shadow of Death
Next game (chronology)Might and Magic VII: For Blood and Honor
Heroes of Might and Magic III: Armageddon's Blade


Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Restoration of Erathia (also known as Heroes III or HoMM3) is a turn-based strategy game developed by New World Computing for Microsoft Windows and released by the 3DO Company in 1999. An Apple Macintosh port was released by 3DO, and a Linux port was released by Loki Software, both later that year. In 2000, a Gameboy Color port entitled Heroes of Might and Magic 2 was released and the Dreamcast port was cancelled. It is the third installment of the Heroes of Might and Magic series. The game's story is first referenced throughout Might and Magic VI: The Mandate of Heaven and serves as a prequel to Might and Magic VII: For Blood and Honor. The player can choose to play through six different campaigns telling the story, or play in a scenario against computer or human opponents.

The gameplay is very similar to its predecessors in that the player controls a number of heroes that command an army of creatures inspired by myth and legend. The gameplay is divided into two parts, tactical overland exploration and a turn-based combat system. The player creates an army by spending resources at one of the eight town types in the game. The hero will progress in experience by engaging in combat with enemy heroes and monsters. The conditions for victory vary depending on the map, including conquest of all enemies and towns, collection of a certain amount of a resource, or finding the grail artifact.

The game received the expansion packs Heroes of Might and Magic III: Armageddon's Blade and Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Shadow of Death, as well as a fanmade expansion titled Heroes of Might and Magic III: In the Wake of Gods . Heroes Chronicles, a series of short introductory games based on the Heroes III engine, was also released. A special version of Heroes III titled Heroes III Complete, which included the original game and both expansion packs, was released in 2000.

StoryEdit

Heroes 2 GBC 579223 76456 front

Gameboy Box

The game's story unfolds primarily through a series of seven playable campaigns, all set upon the continent of Antagarich. During the campaigns, the story is told from alternating points of view, giving players the opportunity to play as each of the town alignments.

Following the disappearance of King Roland Ironfist of Enroth prior to Might and Magic VI: The Mandate of Heaven, his wife, Queen Catherine, is left to rule the realm. In the meantime, her father, King Nicolas Gryphonheart of Erathia, is assassinated. Without their beloved King, the kingdom of Erathia falls to the dark forces of Nighon and Eeofol. Queen Catherine returns home to Antagarich seeking to rally the people of her homeland and lead them against the evil that has ravaged their nation.

Erathia's capital of Steadwick is sacked by the dungeon lords of Nighon and the Kreegans of Eeofol. Meanwhile, the nations of Tatalia and Krewlod skirmish at the western border, seizing the chance to expand their territory. Catherine's first task is to establish a foothold in the conquered kingdom by enlisting the aid of allies. The wizards of Bracada and the elves of AvLee answer her call, and together they push towards Steadwick and eventually retake it, quickly quelling the border war in the west. Soon after, Lucifer Kreegan, a commander in the Eeofol armies, sends an envoy to Erathia claiming that Roland Ironfist is captive within their territories. AvLee invades Eeofol, but fails to rescue Roland, who is transported to their northern holdings. Afterwards, Catherine invades Nighon, pushing the dungeon armies back to their island home.

In the meantime, the necromancers of Deyja, having been responsible for the assassination of King Gryphonheart, plot to revive his corpse as a lich. They plan to use his wisdom in leading their own armies of the undead. However, King Gryphonheart's will proves too much for the necromancers even in his corrupted state, and he becomes a rogue lich. Having little other recourse, Queen Catherine is forced to ally herself with the necromancers and together they set out to destroy the lich of King Gryphonheart before he becomes too powerful.

A final bonus campaign, accessible only after the main campaigns are complete, tells the story of separatists living in the Contested Lands, a war-torn border between Erathia and AvLee. Tired of the skirmishes that bring unrest to their homelands, they join together to fight for independence from the two large kingdoms. It is later implied that this rising was orchestrated by Archibald Ironfist, the antagonist of Heroes of Might and Magic II: The Succession Wars.

GameplayEdit

Gameplay consists of strategic exploration on the world map and tactical turn-based combat. As with the series in general, the player controls a number of "heroes" who act as generals and command troops comprising various types of creatures inspired by myth and legend. The player can complete or "win" a map by completing the objectives set out by the creator of the map. Objectives may include conquering all the towns in the map, gathering a set amount of resources, or piecing together a puzzle to find the grail artifact. If a player loses all their heroes and towns, they will lose the game.

HeroesEdit

Heroes are the primary focus of the game as they are the vehicle for army movement. At the outset of a map, the player controls at least one hero, and more heroes can be purchased from the Tavern structure in a town. A hero is either a "Might" hero (one focused on physical combat) or a "Magic" hero (one focused on the use of spells). Each hero has a specialty, which may include increasing the effectiveness of a specific creature or the power of a certain spell - this specialty increases in potency with increase in level (for example, a hero may have a specialty that increases the effectiveness of all the Basilisks in their army, or that increases the power of their Chain Lightning spell). The power of a given hero is determined by their level - a higher level means a hero is more powerful. To gain levels, heroes must gain experience points. Experience points can be gained in various ways, primarily by winning in combat or by distributing found treasure to peasants. When a hero gains a level one of their four primary statistics increase, and the player is given a selection on a skill to learn or improve upon as well.

Heroes have four primary statistics that determine their effectiveness in battle: attack, defense, magic power, and knowledge. The hero's attack and defense rankings are added to the corresponding attack and defense rating of troops within that hero's army during battle. Magic power determines the strength of any magic spell cast by that hero, and knowledge determines the amount of magic points available to the hero. Additionally, each hero can be trained in up to eight different skills which can have a number of different effects, such as Wisdom, which allows the hero to learn higher level spells, or Logistics, affecting the distance the hero can travel across the map screen in one game day. Each skill is divided into three levels (basic, advanced, and expert) which determines the effectiveness of the skill effect. In addition, each hero has the ability to equip a variety of artifacts which are found throughout the map to gain a bonus, typically an increase in a primary statistic or an improvement of a skill.

World MapEdit

The World Map screen shows the locations of the heroes, towns, resource producers, creature dwellings, neutral creatures, artifacts, and terrain features in the current map. The player cannot see the whole map initially - the player's heroes will have to explore it. Towns, resource producers and creature dwellings all have some affiliation to a player. If they have not been claimed by a player, they are designated by a gray flag. Otherwise, they will fly the flag of the affiliated character.

The player must navigate his or her characters across the map to progress with the game. The navigation of the world map is limited to the distance that a hero can travel throughout one day of gameplay. Rough terrain, such as snow or desert will slow many heroes down, as well as having slow creatures like zombies in his or her army. Conversely, traveling on roads or having quick creatures like dragons in an army will increase the distance a hero can move in a day. Certain terrain features are impassible without the aid of magic, such as mountains and forests. The game incorporates naval elements - a character can construct and board a ship to explore water areas. There are two "layers" to the world map - the aboveground and the underground. There are typically subterranean gateways that lead to and from the underground. Portals - magical gateways to other parts of the map - are found on the land-based areas of the map, while whirlpools provide a similar function on the water (though at the cost of troops). Progress into areas might be blocked by neutral monsters or garrisons full of creatures.

Maps are filled with a huge variety of buildings, treasures, monsters, mines and so forth that reward extensive exploration. At the very least, a player must locate mines and flag them (whereupon they provide constant resources), since these resources are required to develop towns. The player must also develop his heroes' skills, both by battling creatures (and enemy heroes) and by acquiring artifacts or visiting special locations. For example, the Witch Hut can give a hero a random skill and the Learning Stone provides 1000 experience points.

Players can have their heroes visit other points of interest on the map besides towns, resource producers, creature dwellings, neutral creatures and artifacts. Some locations may provide a hero with a temporary bonus (such as the Rally Flag, which increases the hero's morale rating and movement for the day) or a permanent bonus (such as the Marletto Tower, which permanently increases the hero's defense statistic). There are "treasure hordes" - locations that contain some kind of treasure that is heavily guarded by creatures - such as the Dragon Utopia, which promises gold and very powerful artifacts if the dragon inhabitants are defeated. There are other places to visit as well, such as the Seer's Hut, which will give a hero a reward in exchange for service, usually by having the hero return an artifact, or the Hill Fort, which will upgrade creatures in the hero's army (for a price).

TownsEdit

Towns are a very important aspect of the game as they provide creatures to fill the army of the player, as well as other essential services. Towns cannot be built, existing towns must be taken over instead. A town can be of one of the various alignments which will determine the type of structures that can be built. In order to build and maintain an effective military force, as well as increase the size of their controlled towns, the player must acquire a variety of resources. There are seven basic resource types available in the game: gold, wood, ore, crystal, mercury, sulfur, and gems. Gold is the most important resource, as it is used both to pay for town improvements and to purchase troops. Wood and ore are used for the construction of most buildings. The remaining resources are used primarily to build or upgrade buildings and purchase high-level creatures. Each resource may be found throughout the map, either in single bonuses or provided from a production area, such as a gem pond for gems or a lumber camp for wood. With the appropriate resources, the player may build structures within the town, including creature dwellings (from which troops may be purchased for the player's army), defensive structures, and other useful buildings. Each player may designate one town on the map as their capitol city by upgrading their city hall.

All of the different towns share the ability to build basic structures like town halls, taverns, mage guilds, marketplaces, blacksmiths, a resource generator known as a "resource silo" (usually of a resource most critical to the town's success) and defensive structures like forts and castles. Each town can also build seven creature dwellings, and each of those dwellings may be upgraded once to produce more powerful creatures. All towns have at least one structure that will allow for an increased amount of creatures of a certain type to be produced every week, for example, the Mess Hall of the Stronghold town will increase the number of Goblins available from the Goblin Barracks each week. In order to differentiate further, all towns have unique structures that can be built, for example, the Castle town can construct a Brotherhood of the Sword, which increases the morale of defending troops in the event of a siege. Certain towns may also build a shipyard, which can create boats for sea travel.

If a player finds the Grail artifact, they can deliver it to a town to make that town the Grail's permanent home by creating a special structure. The Grail bestows greatly increased creature growth and weekly income, in addition to a bonus unique to the town, such as the Skyship in the Tower town, which reveals the entire world map and gives defending heroes a bonus to their knowledge statistic in the event of a siege.

CombatEdit

The player will eventually have to engage in combat to complete the objectives of the vast majority of maps in the game. Every hero in the game has up seven "spaces" in his army for "stacks" of creatures. Creatures that are the same can be combined into a single stack to increase its power. Creatures to fill a hero's army are found in various places, most commonly buildings in allied towns that have creatures available. If an army is composed of troops of different alignments, the morale of the group will be lower (such as making an army of Pikemen and Zombies).

The objectives of most maps often involve fighting enemies, for reasons such as conquest, acquiring riches, or finding artifacts. The player will have to fight both other heroes and neutral monsters. Enemy heroes are just like the ones that the player controls - they may choose to attack the player's hero at any time. Neutral creature groups do not have a hero with them and are usually just composed of a group of one type of unit. Neutral creatures are typically found guarding passages, resource generators, artifacts and similar locations or items of value. They will not attack the hero, the hero must attack them. If the hero is obviously stronger than the neutral enemies, the neutral enemies may flee (or, for a hero with the Diplomacy skill, request to join the attacking hero's army). Creatures that are not commanded by a hero can also be found guarding creature dwellings (such as a Monastery) or treasure areas (such as a Dragonfly Hive), as well as defending neutral or claimed towns and garrisons.

Combat takes place on its own screen, which comprises an 11 by 15 grid of interlocking hexagons. Combat is divided into rounds, and within each round the creatures of both sides are moved along the battlefield according to their speed rating. The player's hero may cast a spell on any friendly creature's turn, once per round. A creature can move and / or attack, defend to reduce incoming damage, or defer their turn to wait for a more beneficial time to act. The player's creature stacks are used to deal damage to the opposing player's creature stacks. Typically, the defending creatures gets a chance to counter-attack the first time that they are attacked per round, though some creatures have abilities that negate this. When a creature stack takes enough damage, the stack size will decrease. Eventually, if a stack takes enough damage, the stack "dies" and is removed from combat. When all creature stacks of a player have been destroyed, the combat ends and the player or computer opponent with remaining units wins. In combat between two heroes, one hero may decide to flee from battle (losing their army) or surrender, retaining their army for a gold fee. Against creatures encountered in the wild, the hero may only flee. In either case, the hero will appear immediately in taverns associated with the player. If a hero is totally defeated in combat, the hero abandons the cause of the player, and will be added to the general hero rotation so that even enemy players may be able to purchase that hero. If a hero completely defeats another hero, the victor gains control of the artifacts possessed by the defeated hero.

In most maps, players must attack enemy towns to progress. Towns may be defended by creatures or by a hero controlling creatures. When the player attacks a town, the defending army will usually be behind some kind of protection if a fort, citadel, or castle is built. Depending on the range of defense, the defending hero might have access to defensive walls, guard towers, and a moat or similar structure. These aspects give the defender the advantage, but with one caveat - they usually can't escape from the battle. If the defending hero or town's creature stacks are eliminated, the attacking hero's faction gains control over the town. If a player does not control a town at all, they are given seven days in game time to get one. If this does not occur, or if the player loses all his heroes, the player is eliminated from the game.

MagicEdit

The player can command his hero to learn and cast magical spells either in combat or on the world map. The character can learn spells from visiting a Mage Guild in a town, from a scroll, or several other means. The number of spells that a character can cast is based on the hero's Knowledge statistic, which is represented in the form of a magic point pool. When a character casts a spell, magic points are removed from the pool. The hero cannot cast a spell that costs more magic points than he or she has available. The efficacy of a spell is based on the hero's Power rating - the higher the rating, the more powerful, long lasting, or potent the spell will be.

The main source of spells is from a Mage Guild, which every town alignment has the potential to build. The ability to learn spells themselves is determined by the Wisdom skill. All heroes can cast level one and two spells, but the Wisdom skill is required to learn more powerful spells. For example, to learn a level five spell, the hero must possess the Wisdom skill at expert level. Depending on the town alignment, the player can construct mage guilds between 3rd- and 5th-level, which provides spells of the respective level. Lower level spells are cheaper to cast but aren't particularly powerful, while higher level spells are typically very strong and correspondingly expensive to cast. A character can't learn all the spells in the game from a single Mage Guild, the player will have to send the hero to other allied towns or to find other means of getting more spells.

The magic system is categorized according to the four classical elements: water, fire, air and earth. Heroes can learn skills corresponding to each element. For example, a hero with no skill in water magic using the water-based Bless spell would only affect one unit, while a hero with Expert water magic would affect all his troops with the spell.

A hero can use a spell in combat once per round, during any of his or her creature's turns. Combat spells have various effects that primarily fall into the following categories:

  • Direct damage: These spells instantly deal damage to one or more stacks of creatures, such as the Fireball or Lightning Bolt spells.
  • Negative effect: These spells will hinder enemy troops in some way, such as decreasing their damage with the Curse spell or making them unable to take actions with the Blind spell.
  • Positive effect: These spells will help allied troops in some way, such as giving them an increased defense rating with the Stone Skin spell or summoning a group of air elementals to aid in combat with the spell Summon Air Elemental.

A player can also command a hero to use spells on the world map as well. There are less spells available for use on the world map and usually are related to movement and information gathering. Spells like Fly and Dimension Door allow for navigation across normally impassible terrain like mountains and forests, and a hero can summon sea transportation with the spell Summon Boat. Additionally, by the use of a spell like Visions, the hero can gather information about nearby enemies.

Town alignmentsEdit

There are eight different town alignments available in Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Restoration of Erathia: three "good" towns (Castle, Tower, and Rampart), three "evil" (Inferno, Necropolis, and Dungeon), and two "neutral" (Fortress and Stronghold). Each town has fourteen unique creature types: seven basic level creatures, each of which can be upgraded to a more powerful advanced level creature. Creatures are also arranged into 7 levels for the purpose of calculating experience points and the casting of spells (i.e., some spells of a lower level cannot affect creatures of a certain level). Creatures are generated by creature dwellings, which must be constructed by the player, on the first day of every game week. Each town also features two associated hero types: one that focuses more on might(combat), and one that focuses more on magic. Taverns in towns allow the acquisition of heroes, which are refreshed at the beginning of every week. Taverns will always initially have at least one hero aligned with the starting town type to be available to the player.

CastleTown

The Castle town is the home of Knights and Clerics.

  • The Castle is predominantly "human", deploying the forces using weapons of steel and build structures of stone. The creatures that can be hired in the Castle, in ascending order of level, are pikemen, archers, griffins, swordsmen, monks, cavalry, and angels. Later these units are able to be upgraded to halberdiers, marksmen, royal griffins, crusaders, zealots, champions, and archangels respectively. Castles typically require large quantities of wood to upgrade fully, and Castle troops favor grasslands. The might hero is the Knight and the magic hero is the Cleric. The kingdom of Erathia is of the castle alignment. The Archangel is the second fastest unit in the game, as well as having the highest attack and defense of all town dwelling creatures, and has the ability to resurrect fallen allied troops.
  • The Tower is associated with wizards and their magical servants, constructs, and allies. The Tower's creatures are gremlins, stone gargoyles, stone golems, magi, genies, nagas, and giants. The respective upgrades are master gremlins, obsidian gargoyles, iron golems, archmagi, master genies, naga queens, and titans. Tower buildings and Titans consume a substantial amount of gems and gold, and have an advantage in snowy environments. The might hero is the Alchemist and the magic hero is the Wizard. The kingdom of Bracada is of the tower alignment. While the Titan is not the strongest unit by sheer might, it is the strongest unit with a ranged attack in the game, and is in a three way tie with the Black Dragon and the Ancient Behemoth for having the most hit points for town dwelling creatures.
  • The Rampart draws on nature-affiliated creatures and those who defend them. The Rampart's units are centaurs, dwarves, wood elves, pegasi, dendroid guards, unicorns, and green dragons. The respective upgrades are centaur captains, battle dwarves, grand elves, silver pegasi, dendroid soldiers, war unicorns, and gold dragons. The might hero is the Ranger and the magic hero is the Druid. Ramparts need a good supply of crystal and wood, and their forces prefer to fight in the grasslands. The kingdom of AvLee is of the rampart alignment. Some Rampart creatures hamper enemy magics; Rampart units and heroes often possess magic resistance. Gold Dragons have the highest attack and defense of all town dwelling dragons and are immune to all but fifth level spells.
  • The Inferno is a dark and brooding castle reminscient of classical depictions of hell. The Inferno's creatures are imps, gogs, hell hounds, demons, pit fiends, efreeti and devils. The upgrades are familiars, magogs, cerberi, horned demons, pit lords, efreet sultans, and archdevils. The might hero is the Demoniac and the magic hero is the Heretic. Infernos require specially prepared Mercury from labs and prefer to fight on ashy wastelands. The Kreegans of Eeofol are of the inferno alignment.
Heroes3town

The Necropolis town is the home of Necromancers and Death Knights.

  • The Necropolis is a ghost town of the undead. All creatures in the Necropolis are undead, which makes them immune to a variety of spells and effects, such as poison, morale, death waves, or any mind-affecting spells. On the downside, they are also weak to certain holy spells that damage only them, and severely hurt the morale of any creatures unlucky enough to be forced to fight in the same army as them. The creatures in the Necropolis are skeletons, walking dead, wights, vampires, liches, black knights, and bone dragons. The upgrades are skeleton warriors, zombies, wraiths, vampire lords, power liches, dread knights, and ghost dragons. The undead desire a balanced amount of all resources in general, although ghost dragons require extra amounts of mercury. The might hero is the Death Knight and the magic hero is the Necromancer. The kingdom of Deyja is of the necropolis alignment. The signature ability of the Necropolis's heroes, Necromancy, returns from Heroes II; after winning a battle, heroes with the Necromancy skill can raise a certain percentage of fallen troops as skeletons or skeleton warriors. However, the Necromancy skill often crowds out the Wisdom skill among Necromancers, hindering their ability to cast higher level spells.
  • The Dungeon houses bizarre creatures that prefer to live underground. The creatures in a Dungeon are troglodytes, harpies, beholders, medusae, minotaurs, manticores, and red dragons. The upgrades are infernal troglodytes, harpy hags, evil eyes, medusa queens, minotaur kings, scorpicores, and black dragons. The might hero is the Overlord and the magic hero is the Warlock. Dungeons desire sulphur, and its forces obviously prefer to fight in underground passages. The kingdom of Nighon is of the dungeon alignment. Along with the Magic Elementals of the Conflux Town, Black Dragons are the most magic resistant out of all creatures in the game, as no magic can affect them.
  • The Strongholds are populated with various brutish creatures associated with barbarism and raiding. The Stronghold's creatures are goblins, wolf riders, orcs, ogres, rocs, cyclopes, and behemoths. The upgrades are hobgoblins, wolf raiders, orc chieftains, ogre magi, thunderbirds, king cyclopes, and ancient behemoths. Strongholds need a steady ore supply to be built, and their troops are able to traverse the normally harsh desert with ease. The might hero is the Barbarian and the magic hero is the Battle Mage. The kingdom of Krewlod is of the stronghold alignment. Stronghold heroes and creatures are dedicated to offense and able to deal large amounts of damage, but often cannot take very much damage themselves, except for the Behemoth and Ancient Behemoth. (The Ancient Behemoth is in a three way tie with the Titan and the Black Dragon for having the highest hit points of any town dwelling creatures.) The magic available to Stronghold towns is very limited - their mage guild only contains spells up to the third level of magic. The Stronghold is, however, the only town type which allows for the building of an Escape Tunnel, a town structure which allows defending heroes to flee from a siege.
  • The Fortress offers hardy creatures bred in the marshes and contain numerous reptilian creatures. The Fortress creatures are gnolls, lizardmen, serpent flies, basilisks, gorgons, wyverns, and hydras. The upgrades are gnoll marauders, lizard warriors, dragon flies, greater basilisks, mighty gorgons, wyvern monarchs, and chaos hydras. A Fortress needs little of most of the resources, but it requires masive quantities of wood and quite a lot of sulphur. Their troops are at home in the swamps. The might hero is the Beastmaster and the magic hero is the Witch. The kingdom of Tatalia is of the fortress alignment. Fortress creatures often have unusual abilities based on "poison" effects, such as the Mighty Gorgon which can slay creatures instantly with its gaze, or the Dragon Fly which dispels beneficial spell effects from creatures which it attacks. Like the Stronghold, the Fortress mage guild only goes up to third level spells.
  • There were also plans by the developers to release a new town, called Forge which was to feature sci-fi influenced units and buildings. But because of poor fan reaction this was cancelled.
Heroes 3 Ad

Ad for the game displayed during the installation of Might and Magic VI: The Mandate of Heaven, in this case featuring an early rendtition of Catherine Ironfist riding atop a Griffin

Expansion packsEdit

Main article: Heroes of Might and Magic III: Armageddon's Blade
Main article: Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Shadow of Death

Two expansion packs were released for Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Restoration of Erathia.

Armageddon's BladeEdit

The first of these expansions, Armageddon's Blade, introduced a ninth town alignment, the Conflux; a random scenario generator, a variety of new creatures, heroes, and structures; and six new playable campaigns.

  • The Conflux is associated with predominantly elemental creatures. The Conflux creatures are PixieAir ElementalsWater ElementalFire ElementalsEarth ElementalsPsychic Elementals, and Firebirds. The respective upgrades are Sprites, Storm Elementals, Ice Elementals, Energy Elementals, Magma Elementals, Magic Elementals, and Phoenixes. The might hero is the Planeswalker and the magic hero is the Elementalist. The town buildings require fairly balanced resources, although some buildings, and particularly the Phoenixes, require extra Mercury. Although the Conflux creatures are, in most cases, weaker than the creatures of other towns, they have a higher base growth rate (per game week) than any other town, and the Firebird/Phoenix is the only level 7 creature with a base growth rate of 2. Many of the Elementals produced by the Conflux have immunity to various types of offensive magic. For example, Psychic Elementals are immune to mind spells, and the Magic Elemental is immune to all magic. Also, the Phoenix is the fastest creature in the game by a significant margin, so heroes whose armies include them will always have the first action in combat.

The Shadow of DeathEdit

The second expansion, The Shadow of Death, added seven new playable campaigns and a variety of new artifacts, including a whole new type of artifact, the "Combination Artifact." Combination Artifacts required the player to assemble a certain number of complimentary artifacts of different classes, ranging from treasure to relic, and combine them to build a super-artifact.

Neither Armageddon's Blade nor The Shadow of Death were released individually for the Macintosh or Linux ports of the game.

In the Wake of GodsEdit

An unofficial fangame expansion pack Heroes of Might and Magic 3½: In the Wake of Gods was released in the early 2000s. It introduces a brand new scripting language to the game, that allows a variety of third party extensions and modifications to be made to the game. In addition, the release includes a variety of new features, including a large variety of new creatures and structures, modifications to existing creature and hero statistics, a number of optional gameplay changes, and several new campaigns. In the Wake of Gods is currently only available for the Windows version of the game, and the developers have announced no plans to release it for any other version of the game.

Complete EditionEdit

In 2000, a bundle containing Heroes III and both expansion packs was released as Heroes III Complete. More than just bundling the original game discs, however, this release reworked the game's installation process as well as its in-game menus to reflect a unified product.

It was released for both Windows and Macintosh, and was the first opportunity for Macintosh players to obtain the two expansions and the random scenario generator. This version used SafeDisc 2 or higher copy-protection methods. It has now been subequently rereleased on Good Old Games as a DRM free download.

ReceptionEdit

 Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
Game Rankings 87% [1]
MobyGames 90 out of 100 [2]
Review scores
Publication Score
GameSpot 9.1 out of 10 [3]
IGN 9.0 out of 10 [4]
Computer Gaming World 4.5 out of 5
Computer Games Magazine 5 out of 5

Heroes III was received positively by critics,[3][4] receiving an average score of 87% in Game Rankings. It was widely acclaimed as the best game in the series.

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