Heoes of Might & Magic III HD - The best HoMM coming to PC and Tablets

The expansions made this game so much better there is no way I’m buying without those.

Didn’t they say that they only have the source code for SOE? Dumbasses at new world apparently lost the source code for the expansions.

You can still get Heroes 3 Complete on GOG, you know.

Which is what I did - more specifically, a buddy gifted it to me as a belated birthday gift, but I pulled it down and installed the HD mod. It looks and plays brilliantly, and is not only content complete, but there are a few beloved mods that add actual content (like a 10th faction) to the game. Here is what it looks like with the mod installed, I’m play8ing in a 720p window but the resolution allegedly goes up to the 4k area):

I like what they did with the combat screen here - greying out the overland map background is clever - the HD version on Steam just puts black bars there, from what I noticed on a video I watched last night.

Now, I will admit the new HD version has cleaner sprites, they did a great job on that - but I don’t believe you gain much in terms of visual fidelity with the new games (the animations are all the same, for instance) but the new version if $5 more for just the vanilla game than what you get for $10 from GoG (which is the game and both expansions).

The only mod I currently have installed is the HD mod, which can be found here.

I’m guessing that no one bothered to save the source control databases on the server when the remnants of New World moved to Solvang in 2003. 3DO fired 90% of the company in 2002, including the entire Heroes team. Work on the Heroes 3 code base dead-ended 2 years before, and 3DO proper never saw any value in the series. In all likelihood it was all gone at that point, and Ubisoft was lucky to find a backup copy of the 1999 code when 3DO went bankrupt.

That is incredible

My monitor’s resolution is 1680x1050. But when I use the mod, the actually play area is a small “window” within the Windows window. It looks like yours is filling your entire display. Any idea what I’m doing wrong?

EDIT: Never mind! It was just the main menu screens that displayed like that. Doh!

It is incredible that 3DO never saw any value in one of the best games ever made, no wonder they went belly up.

3DO - and more specifically, Trip Hawkins - felt that PC gaming was on the way out, and that the money was in console games. We still had a profit-sharing plan in place when we finished Heroes 3, but according to 3DO’s accounting, there wasn’t any profit from Heroes 3 to share. Partially, of course, because they included significant overhead from 3DO proper as part of the costs. Even so, if it had been a runway best-seller, presumably that would have more than made up for the extra Selling, General, and Administrative costs tacked on.

I look forward to a mod that will let you copy in texture files from the remaster into the original game (with xpacks installed) and magic them all together with the HD mod.

Of course, then you get xpack only monsters being blurrier than ones in the base game, so you’ll need to add some flavor text about how they’re all actually from another dimension and forcing their way into our reality, but the transition process is imperfect. But that is the easy part!

This Total Biscuit video made me want to buy HOMM3 from gog. I had HOMM1 many years ago and thought it was great, and this HD remake looks completely useless. And now I see there’s a HD mod for the old one? It looks even more useless.

It’s really the portability that makes it appealing to me. If they had just ported the whole HOMM3 package over to iOS (yes, I know they lost some of the source code), I would have been fine with the original graphics. Not that the upgraded visuals don’t look spiffy.

Looking forward to it. I remember being a little disappointed in II, mostly because all the new stuff that had been added didn’t have all the kinks worked out, and III felt like II perfected, so I tend to recommend I and III, even though I only worked on I and II. All these old games that I worked on like Wasteland, Bard’s Tale, Battle Chess, HoMM, and Dragon Wars coming out! The trouble with computer games if you work on them is that they are like sand castles, the new tide of equipment and titles comes in, and they are washed away, never to be seen again, and only dimly remembered (one of my gaming buddies made sand castles for years as a living, but at least he has photos of his work). Anyway, it’s nice to see the revivals.

I loved the Heroes of Might and Magic series through HoMM3 and then fell if the HoMM bandwagon. Well, I’ve had the HoMM 3 release for a long time and figured I’d fire it up. I finished the first scenario of the campaign and am kinda reminded why I fell out of love with it.

The first scenario has a difficulty of easy, so it wasn’t a problem to win but I was reminded of some weaknesses. So many battles are over before they start. If I get a decent set of ranged attackers, the enemy army is decimated before they can close the distance. The same would hold true for the enemy. Amass a huge stack of ranged units and cause killer damage.

In the campaign they let the player carry over a set number of heroes, so that kinda promotes trying to get your top for heroes to all the little power up huts to improve their stats / level up . That can get tedious. I never really know how powerful I’ll need to be so I don’t know if it is necessary - so I do it.

Many times the game amounts to everyone having an uber stack, and when that battle happens it’s win or it may be over. That encourages delivering troops form the different castles to the main hero, which adds some tedium. Sometimes it’s possible to run some interference and claim resource huts with lower tier heroes, but it’s mainly about the uber stacks.

Has anyone fired this up recently? Do the skirmishes stand up better than the campaign or maybe this classic is better left to my fond memories of it?

I’m gonna go with this. I agree with everything you stated. It was a good game, at the time. In reality it’s pretty tedious.

I had similar thoughts last time I played it. Using low-level heroes to ferry troops to your frontline main hero is interesting in theory because it’s basically establishing a supply line and carrying out battlefield logistics. Unfortunately, it’s tedious in practice. I think you’re right about combat devolving into smashing together doom stacks as well. There are some more interesting alternative victory conditions (visiting obelisks to reveal the location of the winning item and then venturing out to dig it up), but the AI cannot play to win on those maps, so unless you have some other people willing to play a 20-year-old game, it’s for naught.

If I’m ever in the mood to play it again, I’d probably opt for King’s Bounty: The Legend instead, which admittedly has some of the same issues as Heroes. However, since you’re only playing as one ‘hero’ and since the AI is more like a fixed obstacle than an ever-growing power in a sandbox, it avoids many of the same pitfalls.

It’s even on sale on Steam at the moment for under $2. You can get all its sequels too for under $10, though I’ve never played any of them.

I did play a couple of those newer King’s Bounty games and did like them at the time. I forgot there was only one hero which like you said helps with at least the one issue.

HoMM3 is a favorite among so many (older) players. I bounced off hard though. I think I should watch a Let’s Play or two and try again.

Download Horn of the Abyss if you want to play HoMM3 nowadays. It’s balanced, better random maps, more scenarios, a campaign, a new race and, most importantly, an active online community.

Have you tried Heroes of Might and Magic 5? With the Tribes of the East Stand alone Expansion it really recaptures a lot of the magic of HoM&M 3, but with some interesting changes. Like every unit having 2 different upgrades choices. And the unique skills being a bit more involved.