Review by KFHEWUI

"With a little more polish, Warriors of Might and Magic could have been a solid title"

Ardon is a land that was ruled by Ancients, an ancient race of immortal warriors, and their arch enemies were Kreegans. Kreegans were giants that towered over the clouds and while the Ancients were more powerful than Kreegans, Kreegans outnumbered the Ancients. As the war rages on between the two races, humans slowly began developing yet the Ancients cared not for humans however one of the Ancients became curious about the humans. His name was Einar, and he protected the humans. Daglathor is a Kreegan that is cruel and used humans as food, and Einar led a charge against Daglathor yet the Ancients should have crushed the Kreegans, the Kreegans were able to hold their own. Einar waited for the time that the Kreegans were at their weakest before launching another attack and driving Daglathor into the heart of a volcano. For many years afterwards Einar disguised himself as human with blond hair and blue eyes to woo woman all over the land, and some conceived his child. At this time a prophecy is written about reviving Daglathor while another child of Einar would rise up and protect the people. Einar cast a powerful spell over his children so they could not strike each other because he did not want them to fight amongst themselves.

Warriors of Might and Magic has a good story, and not only does the instruction booklet have a lengthy summary of the backstory leading up to the game, there is a large amount of storytelling throughout the course of the game. Some of it is told through FMV cut scenes while other is brief chatting between characters. The story is well written with a nice twist or two along the way, and it does end with a nice ending.

The game starts with a beautiful FMV video that is nicely animated which shows a village being slaughter, and there are several other FMVs scattered across the game and each one looks great. Some of the videos are long in length and lasting around a minute or more. The in game graphics look decent, but the textures suffer from being bland. Areas in the game include caves, city, and more caves. The textures look nice, but the scenery is very repetitive. One nice little touch is how as the player gains new weapons and armor, the character model changes to show the difference. The enemies look nice, and there is a nice variety of enemies including dragons made of ice (looks more like glass), floating magic sphere, killer snake, and armor to name a few. Later on the game does recycle the same enemies over with a different paint coat. Enemies and the player are nicely animated although the character can look goofy while he is running.

Warriors of Might and Magic is a single player game with only one difficulty, and the difficulty is balanced for the most part however there are a few parts that can be cheap. This game brings a lot of changes from what Crusaders of Might and Magic played like, and this time around there is only eleven levels with one or two of the levels being repeated. The areas in the game are not original by any stretch of imagination including caves, stronghold, monastery, and ruined city to name a few. Levels vary in size but all of the levels are usually straight forward with a side path to take to collect an item, and most of the level is mainly composed of narrow corridors with a large room every once in a while. Each level is divided into several different sections and a save point marks the next area, and there are no load times in the levels.

Aside from going from point "A" to point "B", the player must collect several items along the way. Keys unlock chests and some doors, orbs are used to activate portals, and gems are used to unlock doors that have been sealed with magic. Also long the way the player can obtain new weapons, shield, and magic spells, and shields are mainly for cosmetics although they raise the player's defense, there is no way to block in the game. Weapons consist of only two types: axe and sword, and every weapon in the game is mainly a stronger form of one or the other. There are seven spells in the game to obtain which are standard affair with lightning, heal, fire, etc. yet collecting the same spell that the player already owns will level up the magic spell. Each spell can be leveled up four times and with each level up, the amount of mana needed decreases while the power increases.

For the most part, levels are silent with only the only sound being that of Alleron's footsteps. There are tracks for the cut scenes and a tune plays when saving, and the few tracks in the game are not that bad especially the saving tune which sounds like the chiming of bells and easily the best track of the game. Sound effects are much better with clank of weapons and player grunting. The game is fully voice acted, and the voice acting is solid.

Controlling the character is easy yet while the control scheme has been completely redesigned from Crusaders of Might and Magic; the new layout is much better and does not take too long to adjust too. The game does support analog sticks, but only the left stick is used to move the character. It would have been nice if the right stick would control the camera. Speaking of the camera, it is completely controlled by the player that means constantly having to rotate it see the next narrow corridor that has to be taken.

Combat is simplistic, and the best tactic is either to lure the enemy into attack then counter, just to wail upon the enemy, or use magic. Killing enemies will net the player experience, and once the player gains enough experience, they will level up. Leveling up gives the player more health and mana as well as replenishing their health. A bar underneath the health bar represents the experience bar. Most of the enemies do not put up too much of a fight and are complete push overs however the enemies will every once in a while love glitching up and doing an instant kill hit no matter how much health the player has. Some enemies will endlessly respawn until a portal is destroyed similar to the generators from Gauntlet Legends plus in some areas all enemies must be killed to reveal a crystal that must be destroyed to dispel a magical barrier.

Warriors of Might and Magic is not a long game, and my first playthrough clocked around five hours and my second was around two and half hours. There really is zero replay value since there is only one difficulty and with the game being so linear most people will pass through the game in no time. Plus the game does have a few issues, and the three worst glitches I ran into were crashing, objects disappearing and never reappearing (i.e. gate crystals), and areas not loading fast enough which could result in the player walking off into an abyss and falling to their death. Strange thing is that I only encountered these issues when I played with analog on, but with it off, not once did the game ever crash or the other two issues happen.

Overall this game is average and needed more polishing, but even with its rough edges, I was still able to enjoy it. It is not perfect, but it is not bad for an afternoon distraction.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Originally Posted: 11/09/12

Game Release: Warriors of Might and Magic (US, 02/07/01)

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