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mtcantor
10-18-2011, 12:29 PM
Our website, The Unplayables, just posted our in-depth review of Heroes VI.

You can read it here: http://theunplayables.com/2011...ic-heroes-vi-review/ (http://theunplayables.com/2011/10/might-and-magic-heroes-vi-review/)

Basically, we loved it. Felt like it is the best game in the entire Heroes series so far, and a vast improvement over IV and V.

Like a lot of you, I am not a fan of the Conflux system, especially when it kicks me to the main menu right in the middle of a big battle, but regardless, great game. Strange that the bigger sites haven't bothered to review it yet.

mtcantor
10-18-2011, 12:29 PM
Our website, The Unplayables, just posted our in-depth review of Heroes VI.

You can read it here: http://theunplayables.com/2011...ic-heroes-vi-review/ (http://theunplayables.com/2011/10/might-and-magic-heroes-vi-review/)

Basically, we loved it. Felt like it is the best game in the entire Heroes series so far, and a vast improvement over IV and V.

Like a lot of you, I am not a fan of the Conflux system, especially when it kicks me to the main menu right in the middle of a big battle, but regardless, great game. Strange that the bigger sites haven't bothered to review it yet.

belgarath21
10-18-2011, 12:37 PM
Disclaimer: I don't have the game yet

I tend to look on metacritic.com for reviews and Heroes 6 seems to be doing well (score of 78 so far). I am also surprised that gamespot and ign (for example) haven't reviewed it yet.

jhwisner
10-18-2011, 12:48 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by belgarath21:
Disclaimer: I don't have the game yet

I tend to look on metacritic.com for reviews and Heroes 6 seems to be doing well (score of 78 so far). I am also surprised that gamespot and ign (for example) haven't reviewed it yet. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Friend of mine who writes for one of the major sites did say they were taking longer to review because of issues they had connecting and staying connected to Conflux. They were unsure how to treat that in scoring and even considering reviewing the game in its "fully featured" offline mode since they themselves could not maintain reliable access to the online "extras."

HEF2011
10-18-2011, 12:54 PM
I didn't even read the whole review but I found the first paragraph pretty funny commentary with the re-naming the series, Might & Magic Heroes VI instead of Heroes of Might & Magic. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
When I have time, I'll go back and re-read the whole review as it looks like a fun read going into the history of the series. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

mtcantor
10-18-2011, 12:54 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">es did say they were taking longer to review because of issues they had connecting and staying connected to Conflux. They were unsure how to treat that in scoring and even considering reviewing the game in its "fully featured" offline mode </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I noted this in the review, but I only had one issue with the Conflux: I got kicked out mid-battle at the beginning of the Haven campaign. Extremely annoying, but everything else worked great, including the Orb system and the Dynasty stuff.

znork
10-18-2011, 01:04 PM
grate review.

Zambo135
10-18-2011, 01:13 PM
Love the review http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

mtcantor
10-18-2011, 01:14 PM
Thanks! Tried to be as thorough as possible without being too verbose. The review is probably too long, but I hope its informative and can encourage folks to try the game out.

It really was a blast to play.

HEF2011
10-18-2011, 02:24 PM
Aside from the typos here and there, I found something to point out... The map that Heroes traverse is called a World Map.

Quick question:

Why so harsh on Might & Magic Heroes V? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif



Other than that, interesting review and very informative. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

jhwisner
10-18-2011, 02:24 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by mtcantor:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">es did say they were taking longer to review because of issues they had connecting and staying connected to Conflux. They were unsure how to treat that in scoring and even considering reviewing the game in its "fully featured" offline mode </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I noted this in the review, but I only had one issue with the Conflux: I got kicked out mid-battle at the beginning of the Haven campaign. Extremely annoying, but everything else worked great, including the Orb system and the Dynasty stuff. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yeah considering the inconsistent experience people have had so far with the online-mode aspects of the game - with experiences ranging from the majority experiencing very little instability to some experiencing nothing but instability if they can connect at all - it would depend on the reviewer's own experience.

Also it does seem that purchasers of the Steam licensed version had, at least early on, a significantly wider assortment of issues related to online and offline modes. If a reviewer was using a day 1 Steam copy of the game and fell into the subgroup exeriencing significant problems running the game, they might be more likely to delay reviewing it if they felt a more complete picture of the functionality and reliability of the Conflux service might offer an opportunity to provide a more fair and meaningful review.

Just as you did not ignore the concerns and potential pitfalls with the way features, saves, and active game-play are tied into the Conflux service, I doubt most serious reviews would ignore it as well. In a sense I consider yours to be one of the very earliest serious reviews to date and does largely reflect my own opinions and experiences with the game.

I agree that it is very enjoyable game for the most part, with a few debatable decisions and some not too insignificant bugs. At the same time I find this game and experience is partly threatened by the decisions of exactly how to integrate Conflux into Dynasty features and the single player experience. You may be at an advantage over some of the major review sites in that you do not feel compelled to apply a score to a game and do not have the same sort of bureaucracy to contend with. Your site is an example of the usefulness and potential of largely independent video game journalists as well as added ammunition to the argument that a review score is not a primary requirement for a well written review.

Elementalist.
10-18-2011, 03:57 PM
A review well worth reading, you have done a good job at covering everything all the while being objective. I will put it up in the fans for heroes facebook group http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

mtcantor
10-18-2011, 03:59 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by HEF2011:
Aside from the typos here and there, I found something to point out... The map that Heroes traverse is called a World Map.

Quick question:

Why so harsh on Might & Magic Heroes V? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif



Other than that, interesting review and very informative. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Typos?! Thought I had squashed them. I will have to go through and see what I missed.

As far as Heroes V, as I said in the review, I felt like it was just too slow and clunky, almost clumsy feeling. It's hard to express in words, but it just did not satisfy the same desires that Heroes III did.

Thanks for the feedback!

HEF2011
10-18-2011, 06:11 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by mtcantor:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by HEF2011:
Aside from the typos here and there, I found something to point out... The map that Heroes traverse is called a World Map.

Quick question:

Why so harsh on Might & Magic Heroes V? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif



Other than that, interesting review and very informative. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Typos?! Thought I had squashed them. I will have to go through and see what I missed.

As far as Heroes V, as I said in the review, I felt like it was just too slow and clunky, almost clumsy feeling. It's hard to express in words, but it just did not satisfy the same desires that Heroes III did.

Thanks for the feedback! </div></BLOCKQUOTE>



Well, y'know... that's the challenge of being a writer; the ability to express in words that others are willing to read.
Take a look at this paragraph:
"Heroes of Might and Magic, on the other hand, was a spin-off series, first created in 1995 as Heroes of Might and Magic: A Strategic Quest. Instead of being a first-person RPG, Heroes was a top-down, isometric, turn based strategy game centered around controlling heroes at the head of various armies. Players would use these heroes to capture resources, artifacts (which could augment their heroes) and towns, which could produce more units and offer other benefits. Upon engaging an enemy (monsters or heroes) the game would change to a side-camera turn based combat encounter, with each type of unit lined up on both sides of the screen. The game was deep, lengthy, and extremely fun, and culminated in Heroes III in 1999, widely considered to be the best game in the series. By this time New World Computing was owned by the ill-fated 3DO Company, and the series took a serious nosedive with Heroes IV: the game changed many elements that series fans were used to."

You mention the 1st game in the series and the 3rd but there's no mention of the immensely popular Heroes of Might & Magic II!
I can see that you favor Heroes III because you compare and contrast that title more than twice. That's O.K. Heroes III was my favorite in the series, too! Hands down. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif
Also, if you're going to mention the fourth in the series by stating:
"...the game changed many elements that series fans were used to."
It would be helpful to mention exactly what those changes were.

Personally, I'm happy there's a new Heroes game. I thought the series was over after the 4th game and when 3DO went out of business. That's why I appreciate the 5th in the series. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif


Best regards.

mtcantor
10-19-2011, 05:46 AM
Thats a fair point, but my review was already far too long. Had to cut things out for the sake of brevity. My goal was really to discuss the merits of Heroes VI, not to provide an exhaustive history of the franchise. What history I did provide was for context.

In any case, fair point. I actually started with Heroes II back in the day.

Frozenkex
10-19-2011, 06:17 AM
The game is very good if you can see the potential, but its not easy to judge with so many bugs right now, they need to rush the patches out.

HEF2011
10-19-2011, 07:05 AM
&gt;&gt;&gt;mtcantor


I understand.

I just made a mistake myself in this thread. The area that the Heroes traverse is actually called the Adventure Map, not a World Map. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blush.gif

Warfran
10-19-2011, 09:24 AM
Excellent review Mike.

There is always one definitive review I read to my wife to give her some feedback on the current game I'm playing and that's this one.
She even said herself that's a well written piece.

The only thing I'm not totally with you on is I liked Heroes V a lot more than you seemed to, at least by the time Tribes of the East released.
I'll be checking out your site on a regular basis now though for sure.

mtcantor
10-19-2011, 10:18 AM
LOL this is the biggest piece of negative feedback I keep getting. I really just didn't like Heroes V, but perhaps now is the time to go back and try it out again. Perhaps I will enjoy it more this time around.

Thanks much for the kind words!

Warfran
10-19-2011, 10:58 AM
Ha ha... I bet Mike, when somebody puts down a game you really enjoy a gamers defense mechanism kicks in I think.

In fact I didn't like HoMM V when it first came out and gave the game away after a short while, I repurchased the Heroes V Collectors Edition that came with both expansions and it was a way better experience, right up there with III for me because of a lot of new features they had added.

So yeah worth another try I think.

belgarath21
10-19-2011, 01:01 PM
This is a very good (i.e. well written) review of the game. I think it should be noted that any new game in a franchise ends up alienating some of the fans of previous games in a franchise. (the same can be said for movies, TV show seasons, music albums...etc.)

I wasn't bothered by the brevity of the hisotrical overview, since that is the point of an overview.

I actually think I would like a review of the "offline" game, since that is what I personally will be playing. Reviewers also have the right (and sometimes the responsibility) to mention technical problems in a game upon it's initial release. Of course this is complicated, since a game's technical problems are often very dependent on the specifications of one's computer and internet connection (plus the game settings)

I was a bit confused by your reference to "persistent internet connection". The official statement from the company is that Heroes VI can be played offline. I assume you were just referring to the Conflux, but it would be good to confirm that for players who haven't followed the offline/online issue as closely as I have.

Thanks for the feedback jhwisner!

mtcantor
10-19-2011, 01:49 PM
I was referring to the Conflux system, yes.

Not a fan of it, but it isn't a game-breaker for me.

belgarath21
10-20-2011, 02:15 PM
Hey guys!

In case you don't know already, metacritic.com has posted Heroes VI reviews from Gameinformer and Gamepro (the 2 biggest US PC game magazines in the business). Gameinformer gave it a good rating and Gamepro gave it a pretty bad rating. Inrestingly, Gameinformer focused more on the gameplay and Gamepro focused on technical glitches and the problems with Conflux.

HEF2011
10-21-2011, 09:34 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Warfran:
Ha ha... I bet Mike, when somebody puts down a game you really enjoy a gamers defense mechanism kicks in I think.

In fact I didn't like HoMM V when it first came out and gave the game away after a short while, I repurchased the Heroes V Collectors Edition that came with both expansions and it was a way better experience, right up there with III for me because of a lot of new features they had added.

So yeah worth another try I think. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>



I agree!
I'd recommend Might & Magic Heroes V: Tribes of the East because it comes packaged with a comprehensive fan created online manual and a extremely useful applet called SkillWheel where you strategically plan the build of your hero. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

belgarath21
10-21-2011, 11:43 AM
I also think the fan manual is amazing and the skill wheel is very usueful.

Gamespy (another major site) has also posted a review of Heroes VI and they are likewise frustrated by the Conflux. It is important to note that they really like the gameplay and don't feel the difficulty has been dumbed down.

An example from Civ V and IV is comparable. Pollution was streamlined in Civ IV and was completely eliminated in Civ V. However, the new unit promotion scheme (with dozens of possible promotions for a single unit) adds whole new layers of complexity to the combat/defense aspect of the game.

jhwisner
10-21-2011, 02:06 PM
Yeah I saw the Gamespy and Gamepro reviews up:

Gamespy gave it 3/5 stars. The reviewer liked the game but their experience was significantly soured by several bugs and by the Uplay/Conflux connectivity reliability issues they experienced.

http://pc.gamespy.com/pc/might...es-vi/1210326p1.html (http://pc.gamespy.com/pc/might-magic-heroes-vi/1210326p1.html)

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content"> If I wasn't punched in the face by UPlay every time Heroes VI's engaging campaigns get rolling, I'd be in love. There's a great game hiding underneath the wet blanket of visual glitches and connectivity issues. Heroes VI strikes the right balance between subtle innovation and faithfulness to the core elements that make the series so excellent, but the experience is nearly ruined by the poorly implemented online infrastructure. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Gamepro also gave it 3/5 stars for similar reasons as Gamespy.

http://www.gamepro.com/article...-magic-heroes-vi-pc/ (http://www.gamepro.com/article/reviews/224094/review-might-and-magic-heroes-vi-pc/)

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content"> PROS: New faction looks lovely and offer units never seen in the series before; Dynasty weapons that you can level up are a great idea; if you've enjoyed past Heroes games, you're going to like the gameplay of Heroes VI.

CONS: Ubisoft's online strategy is an insult to paying customers; game has too many glitches for what is supposed to be a finished retail product; while some of the additions are great, Heroes VI falls into the trap of relying on tried-and-true gameplay too much. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

KingCopper
10-21-2011, 02:31 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Warfran:
/snip
The only thing I'm not totally with you on is I liked Heroes V a lot more than you seemed to, at least by the time Tribes of the East released.
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>
I agree Heroes 5 is underrated, after the addons and patches it was a lot better than most people seem to think.
Very good review still.

belgarath21
10-21-2011, 02:53 PM
I have only played Heroes V in its final form, and I still can't get it to play stably on the two largest map sizes. The game is nevertheless plenty of fun.

I think fans need to compare Heroes VI to the state of Heroes V a week after it's initial release.

I think comparisons to Heroes III are pretty unrealistic. Heroes III was created by NWC during the boom years of the late 1990's. The much lower graphical requirements also meant that a greater share of resources could be dedicated to gameplay and stability.

Many things change over the course of a decade...and more.

jhwisner
10-22-2011, 02:11 PM
One more review popped up that I noticed.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content"> f youíre looking for the atmosphere and scope, go back to Heroes III. If youíre looking for improved gameplay, Heroes VI will have you covered, even if itís rather low-key on presentation. However, even if I am giving a recommendation for the game, I can not, in clear conscience, give a recommendation for the product. The whole way the Conflux and Dynasty systems are integrated, despite some obvious well-working features, feel like sugar-coating DRM. When the pros are weighed against the cons, the cons feel more substantial. Yes, I didnít have a problem, because my Internet didnít die. But it could have. I could go broke tomorrow and be without Internet for a month. My ISP could have technical issues. Maybe Iíd have to move somewhere where installing a working Internet connection isnít immediate. A great deal of things could easily happen, and do happen to many players on a regular basis. If staying online constantly isnít an issue for you, then ignore my criticism and raise the score below by 1. Itís a shame, because itís a great game I canít recommend you buy. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

http://deltagamer.com/18874/re...-and-magic-heroes-vi (http://deltagamer.com/18874/review-might-and-magic-heroes-vi)

It's somewhat unfortunate, but the current implementation of Conflux and the implications it has with regard to the accessibility of features and existing saved games seems to be doing a great deal of damage to the game's reputation. The substantive positive, negative, and mixed reviews alike cite it as one of the primary potential obstacles to enjoying the game. For many reviewers it has been enough for them to recommend not buying the game. Even for those who do recommend purchasing, responsible reviewers like the OP do mention it as a significant caveat to their recommendation.

I worry the way Conflux was implemented in this game may hurt its sales to a degree which may threaten the series. Some companies might learn the propper lessons from this and seek a better balance between protecting their intellectual property and providing an accessible product to all their legitimate customers. UbiSoft never seems to learn that lesson for longer than one development cycle so I fear they will simply conclude the franchise is not sufficiently profitable rather than take a critical look at their own practices (if Settlers 7 didn't finally teach them then nothing will.)

Between Conflux and some of the more glaring bugs I feel like I am in a similar situation. Whenever a friend asks me what I think about the game and if they should get it I can not honestly tell them simply "yes." Whether or not you yourself have had issues with Conflux I hope you can see that a feature/design decision that prevents those who enjoy the game from recommending it outright to their friends has to be seen as a mistake. I simply do not think it could possibly serve to reform enough software pirates to make up for customers lost to a souring of the reception it is receiving.