HOMMage: Might & Magic Heroes VII Announced

By Alice O'Connor on August 13th, 2014 at 3:00 pm.

Not much else in-engine to see.

What would you want in a new Might & Magic Heroes game? (Or a new Heroes of Might & Magic, if you prefer the old name.) When a series is 19 years old, would you rather an exciting new direction, a return to the early days, more of the same, or some sort of mish-mash of two decades’ best bits? Recent games in the fantasy turn-based strategy series have been a bit so-so, but Might & Magic Heroes VII sounds promising. Announced today by Ubisoft, it’s coming from Limbic Entertainment, the folks who did a decent job of channelling The Good Old Days in Might & Magic X: Legacy.

Limbic are looking at a mix of old and new, as CEO Stephan Winter explains:

Basically, our goal is to take the best out of the previous Heroes titles and build Heroes VII from there. Of course we’re also bringing in new features or new ideas without compromising the spirit of Heroes, such as more interactions on the Adventure Map allowing more strategies. For now we won’t delve too much into the details but we have brought in hundreds of small improvements which will help to perfect the formula. All in all we believe that we have the perfect mix of proven features, adjusted ones and new ones.

Story-wise, it’s about some fantasy king or something fighting some fantasy war or whatever who needs to unite traditional HOMM factions. Four of those are settled–Haven, Academy, Stronghold, and Necropolis–but the last two are up to community votes. Right now, you can have a say in Sylvan vs. Fortress. Limbic also plan to give players tools to make stuff, though quite what they’ll let people bosh into the Unreal Engine 3-powered game is unclear.

On the multiplayer side, Skirmish and Duel modes are already in, and Hot Seat support is confirmed. More on that stuff later, they say. Now that I think about it, most of my time with the series was during a friendship basically built around playing Hot Seat HOMM 2. I’m not sure I even remember what the single-player’s like.

The game’s due in 2015. We’re short on screenshots so have a cinematic trailer:

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71 Comments »

  1. hantheman says:

    The 3rd edition of this series remains the pinnacle of its genre in all honesty. So much fun. Here’s hoping the glory days return.

    • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

      Couldn’t agree more. It’s been a long downhill slide since then.

    • Snakejuice says:

      What’s so great about the 3rd one? Sure it’s good but I’ve played 2,3,4,5,6 and they are all really really similar. I probably like the 6th the least because of the simplified castles and frackin uPlay but they are all good games IMO.

  2. Drake Sigar says:

    Now with more Uplay.

    • secuda says:

      And timed exclusive on Xone.

    • Horg says:

      I’ve been playing the Heroes games since the 2nd installment and there is absolutely no way I will buy Heroes 7 with Uplay involved. It pretty much directly and indirectly turned Heroes 6 into a technical disaster. I was in the beta before they integrated Uplay and the game ran well, fairly bug free. After Uplay was added, H6 suffered a number of serious bugs, many of which were never fixed. To this day it still has a crippling memory leak that makes the game lag after 10 minutes crash after 30. Add onto that the inherent problems with Uplay itself and it made H6 one of only 2 games I genuinely regret buying in the last 15 years (Thiefourf being the other). I don’t care what they do with the series, I will not risk getting burned by Uplay a second time.

  3. CobraLad says:

    Can we sign a petition to reboot the setting?
    I remember how they were shitting all over pre-reboot Erathia, telling how new Heroes going to be more dramatic and edgy, and old one was for kids. Then they gave weak warhammer meets warcraft in tolkiens home and also made anime game and ruined Arx Fatalis 2 and chinese outsourcers made some Travian games or something.
    By this point its like beating the horse that was not breathing in the first place.

    • Dawngreeter says:

      I’d support setting reboot. I’m not offended by the current one or anything like that, but it’s not exactly inspiring me to any great lengths either.

    • ain says:

      Yeah, the new setting is so generic and feels forced. Maybe they manage to give the towns some actual variety this time instead of *dark elf rogue*, *dark elf half naked woman with knives*, *dark elf riding a lizard* and *dark elf mage*.

      None of the towns are even remotely exciting and obviously ripped off from GW.

    • tyren says:

      I’ve been wishing for a reboot of the world of Enroth since HoMM5. This one definitely doesn’t grab me.

  4. BobbyDylan says:

    Ah. King Generic McSquareJaw. We meet again.

  5. lizzardborn says:

    Update graphics of heroes 3. Profit.

  6. Dawngreeter says:

    I’m expecting it to not suck. Other than that, I have no preferred course of action. Heroes VI was Heroes III enough for me so I’m not necessarily requesting the same approach. Although that would be fine too.

    Just don’t make it Heroes V and we’re fine.

    • Scurra says:

      Which just goes to show, doesn’t it? I thought VI was a step backwards from V (which I probably sunk more time into than any other game in the series, and I’ve been playing since II.)

      But I dare say I shall be getting this one regardless. Each iteration brings something new that is good (whilst usually losing something else that was good) and also brings something new that is terrible (and makes you wonder what the devs were thinking.)

      • Kaeoschassis says:

        V was my favourite of the series, and I’ve also been playing nigh-religiously since II. I felt it was extremely true to the best bits of the classics – in every way except flavour which was admittedly a little bit lacking – and above all it was just fantastically fun to play. Definitely put more hours into it than any of the others, which is saying something.
        My mother actually plays Heroes, too – it’s the only game series she’s ever bothered to learn. She’s been playing since II and I believe V is her favourite also.
        I’ve just never understood all the hate surrounding it.

        EDIT: Have read the comments futher down the page and I somewhat get it. We have the complete updated version, which would explain why I’m not seeing any of the stuff people were hating on…

        • M. Stouffer says:

          The complete version of V is greatly improved from the base game and it is one of the few titles I return to year after year. I played quite a bit of III before V was released but I haven’t found the need or desire to return.

          In addition to the expansions though, I can sincerely recommend the upgraded AI mod: http://www.bonddisc.com/ref/h5/ — harder to predict and much less exploitable than the original AI.

  7. Premium User Badge Anthile says:

    I didn’t like V and I ended up hating VI and I’m not usually one to hate games. In any case, I’d rather have Dungeon than Sylvan or Fortress although I’m more a Necropolis man myself.

  8. JamesTheNumberless says:

    Some time in the future we can all look forward to HOMMM

  9. Fenix says:

    Was I the only one that had a voice in their head saying “WAR, WAR NEVER CHANGES” as soon as the dude in the trailer started saying “war, is ravaging bla bla”?

    • cypherpunk says:

      I thought the exact same thing. I don’t think any trailer can start with “war [short pause]” in a gravelly voice, and expect to get away with not feeling like they are cribbing from Fallout. :)

    • Enkinan says:

      I feel like that may be the most famous said sentence ever in video games

      • DelrueOfDetroit says:

        “Rise and shine Dr.Freeman.”

        “I’m sorry but the princess you are looking for is in another castle.”

        “It’s dangerous to go alone. Take this!”

        “You’re winner!”

        • Sian says:

          I’m pretty sure, three of your four examples have never actually been said, whereas “War… War never changes” hasn’t only been said, it’s been repeated and parodied so often that some of us can’t help but hear it in examples like this.

      • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

        The funny thing is, it was narrated by a man who thinks video games are a stupid waste of time.

  10. Brosecutor says:

    What’s with all the hate for Heroes V? I really liked it as much as III.

    • Niko says:

      This is wrong and you should feel bad and maybe flagellate yourself a bit?

    • Chris Cunningham says:

      V was released unfinished: Tribes of the East is an absolute requirement for fulfilling play. Other than that, dislike for V is due to nothing whatsoever except nerdrage: it’s a perfect upgrade on III, taking those bits of IV which worked and bringing the whole thing into a beautiful 3D world. The only area in which III is unequivocally better is in the level designs shipped with it; the campaigns in V are uneven and there isn’t the same sense of majesty in the standalone / scenario maps as in III (or even IV).

      Of VI, there are two things truly remarkable: how utterly awful it is, and how on Earth I’ve devoted (according to Steam) a truly unholy one hundred and forty two hours of my life to it nonetheless.

      • Horg says:

        I think the biggest problem with H5 was the combat and magic balance. The unit damage / health ratio was much higher in 5 than 3, which combined with the initiative system, caused the faster ranged stacks to dominate everything else. Magic balance was pretty bad as well, most damage spells were useless unless you played Warlock, and Dark magic was dominant in almost every match up. However, the campaign was fun despite a few dud levels (Inferno campaign i’m looking at you) and i’d defiantly call it the second best game in the series.

      • Meneldil says:

        I was at 50 hours or so and not close to finishing the campaigns. The fact that every map was huge and filled with ridiculously unimpressive stacks that refused to flee even when outnumbered 1000:1, while the AI posed no challenge as it was so easy to abuse the castle-terraforming made HoMM VI one of the most boring and annoying game I’ve played.

    • Grygus says:

      Assuming you mean the game with both expansions, I’m with you. I also came into the series with II, and III and V are roughly equal in my mind. I don’t have a problem with someone preferring one or the other, but the number of people claiming to prefer III, and the fact that reasons are almost never given for it, makes me very suspicious. The games are too close in quality; this isn’t Grand Theft Auto V vs GTA III, where one game is better in pretty much every measurable way.

      People don’t have time to play everything. On the internet I think there is a great deal of parroting others’ opinions with no personal knowledge. It’s very easy to believe that there are some people who prefer III to V, but I do not believe the number of people who seem to have that preference online; I strongly suspect that some of these people expressing a preference have barely played one or the other.

      • Chris Cunningham says:

        I once tried to introduce someone who professed to be a massive fan of III to V and he literally recoiled in horror. I then relented and put on III: he recoiled in horror again, because it was actually II he’d played as a kid. Recall that when III was new it was trendy to hate on it as well.

    • Meneldil says:

      Nerd rage, mostly. V is, hand down, the best (or second best) HoMM. It has all the good bits of III and the few good bits from IV (character customization, pretty much).

      Only problems were :
      - the Warhammer rip-off art.
      - unbalance in MP (with Dark Magic being fucking OP, while Might was generally better than other magic schools).

      People yell at V because it makes them feel hipster or something, while they conveniently forget the disaster that was IV.

      Now, if we’re talking about VI, I’ll share the hate. I uninstalled this bug ridden, boring mess halfway through it, never to look back.

      • Kaeoschassis says:

        IV wasn’t necessarily a disaster. It’s fun to play.
        It’s unbalanced, nowhere near as pretty as III, and half the time it seems like it has no idea what it’s even trying to BE, but it’s fun. And as you pointed out, its character customization was excellent. One of the reasons I’m so fond of V is because it didn’t discard that particular aspect of IV.

        Basically what I’m getting at is that while IV was ultimately a ‘failed experiment’, for want of a better term, anyone making a new Heroes should try to learn from its good bits along with the rest of the series.
        Except VI, yes.

        • Bweahns says:

          HoMM4 was awful. I took it back to the store for a refund, back when I purchased a physical copy of games, it was a different time…

      • GepardenK says:

        IV has hands-down the best music/storyline, and imo also the prettiest adventure map (combat on the other hand is the most awful looking in the series). The game itself is the same: awesome adventure map/leveling gameplay, but terrible combat and balancing

        V is great, like III, but a bit simple imo and with very annoying fantasy art. I really enjoy the fairy tale style from II and IV, although III struck a nice balance. V`s graphics i find very off putting, but the game beneath is good.

        I think the reason people don`t like V is not so much nerd rage as it is the lack of charm (Which many see as half the reason to play a HOMM game)

    • RanDomino says:

      I played V for maybe 7 hours and III for about a decade. I just couldn’t get into V, even though it was obviously very similar to III. I couldn’t get past the square-based combat grid. Making it that much harder to control movement in battle made tactics feel impossible. The other big problem was the overwrought graphics. Do I really need to watch a five-or-whatever-second cinematic every damn time a griffon swoops? No, don’t do a cutscene for it, and animate the swoop while I’m deciding where to move the next unit. Once I’ve seen the griffon swoop cutscene once in my life, I never need to see it again. Move on.

  11. Niko says:

    Heroes 3 but with additional fortress populated by cats of course. That’s all it needs.

  12. Keyrock says:

    Hopefully Limbic do as good a job with this as they did with M&MX. I enjoyed M&MX a lot.

  13. Freud says:

    I don’t enjoy cinematic trailers. They don’t tell me anything about the game and they often look the same. Serious voice-over and short scenes of heroes springing to action.

  14. Premium User Badge RedViv says:

    This Gamescom, I wanted a new Heroes and a new Settlers-NOT-ONLINE, so that’s one out of two announcements. Now all I am waiting for is CA’s Warhammer game.

  15. Moraven says:

    Hope they support this longer than 3 months post release. I have not had any issues yet with Legacy but seems there are still some kinks for some people and they had a lot of potential in expanding the mod tools.

    Seems they will do the Open Dev type Blog format, which was nice.

    https://mmh7.ubi.com/en/blog

    Story

    Might & Magic® Heroes VII tells the story of young Duke Ivan striving to restore peace in a time of civil torment.

    Facing political decisions with dire consequences in his ascension to the Imperial throne, he gathers 6 councilors from 6 distinct factions to support his claim to rule. These advisors tell him glorious stories of legendary heroes from the world of Ashan’s past, so that he may choose the surest path to power and forge his own destiny.

    843 YSD: 4 th Eclipse – Falcon’s Last Flight
    Total eclipse. This time, the Demons storm the capital of the Falcon Empire and massacre the royal house. As soon as the Demons are repelled, fighting breaks out as the various noble houses attempt to claim the throne. Duke Ivan of Griffin conquers the bloody crown. The Empire is renamed “Holy Griffin Empire”.

    Never got a full grasp on the story and history of Ashan. Only played bits of 5 and 6 along with some Legacy.

  16. Frank says:

    Wow, I hate you all. Heroes 3 is not the peak of the series.

    Anyway, I look forward to this. Although MM X was an atrocity of a game, I’m sure Limbic will bring something new to the series.

    • WhatAShamefulDisplay says:

      I hope that you’re gunning for 2 and not 4 or 5…

    • Enkinan says:

      I would not say it’s an atrocity. I’d put it around ok to good. Good enough to play through to the end. When it came out there was a severe drought of RPG’s. If it came out now then it’s flaws would have been magnified a bit due to the quality out currently.

  17. Enkinan says:

    I’m not a fan of Uplay, but M&M X ran fine. It really wasn’t a big deal. People act like it will set your computer on fire and kill babies that come to close.

    • WhatAShamefulDisplay says:

      Yeah, that’s Origin.

    • Grygus says:

      uPlay ruined M&M Heroes VI for me. Crashing to desktop because my single player game lost connection to the host for a second is not just annoying; it’s very annoying. This happens to me far too often, and it isn’t my Internet connection; it’s just the connection to uPlay, everything else is fine. There are also significant bugs in VI associated with being connected even when the connection isn’t necessarily lost, such as bugged dynasty weapons, which only work when connected but sometimes don’t work anyway ha ha ha now isn’t that fun.

      No, it didn’t set my computer on fire. It did crash my game and cause bugs while adding absolutely nothing to my gaming experience, and it was presented as non-optional. It seems pretty reasonable for me to resent the design decision to include it, and to have a bad impression of the service, but perhaps you consider my experience invalid because it doesn’t match yours.

  18. Premium User Badge golem09 says:

    As a big, BIG fan of HOMM V, I sincerely hope this one has randomy generated maps again, since I’ve alway ignored the singleplayer, and spent 100% of my playtime in hotseat mode with my best friend.

  19. ain says:

    Too bad they decided to stay in that silly new universe of theirs. Its so generic and boring.

  20. Shezo says:

    Is this… Adam Jensen voice actor narrating the trailer ?

  21. Derpa says:

    My friends and I will be interested as long as it moves away from all the terrible ideas/changes that happened in 6.

  22. xfstef says:

    OMFG they didn’t even start making the damned thing yet and they already fucked it up !
    Why do we have to choose between an iconic castle that has been in the series since the very start and the best castle addition that they have ever made (in my opinion) ???
    At least the inferno isn’t in, I hated HOMM5 and 6 for their over the top devils and angels shitty story and to be honest the Inferno castle was my least favorite in HOMM3 anyway.

    They have a long way to go to make this game work. I especially hope that they will get back to the original economy and castle management styles, although I already doubt that will happen since they seem intent on keeping the retarded reversed name for the game.

    Oh and yes, as many have already pointed out, the post HOMM3 universe is utterly bland and poorly written at best !

    This is the game serues of my childhood and HOMM2 is my favorite game of all time, so they have already broke my heart with the 4th and 6th iterations of it. What they basically need to do, to keep the franchise alive is just completely avoid going the path of HOMM6. Just forget HOMM6, it was a complete failure. Just throw it out, throw the mechanics out, throw the moronic economy out, throw the storyline out, throw the sea thingy castle out. Just all of it, was complete garbage.

  23. Sheepdog says:

    I’ve actually just started playing VI again recently, and remembered why I stopped the first time, uPlay.
    Each Heroes game has done something different so I don’t know what I’d like them to keep and change.

    Heroes VI streamlined a lot of mechanics (less resource types, conquer town to get all nearby mines, convert things that don’t match your team, choose upgrades from presets instead of random choices, etc.) which probably made games fairer, but lost a bit of what made it interesting.
    Not saying I disagree with that direction, but I wouldn’t want them to go much further that way.

  24. Henchimus says:

    I know HOMM is mostly a MP game, but did anyone *actually* complete the HOMM VI campaign?

    Cos if you did, you have a *lot* of time on your hands. Tedious, insanely long, with little strategy.

    This series hasn’t been good for a long time and uPlay is the crowning turd in the water pipe.

    • Sian says:

      I tried. I really did. But the fact that the AI gets a new full army for free at the beginning of every week to compensate for its weaknesses just ruined the game for me. There’s no point in trying to weaken the enemy, there’s no point in any bigger strategy. The only thing you can do is hit them hard and conquer their castle before a new week starts or you’re basically back to square one.

  25. Bweahns says:

    When I feel like playing HoMM I still play Heroes III with a high resolution patch. I’ve never cared about the story/campaign mode and have always played the single maps and most importantly the random maps. The last HoMM game had no random map generator which kills any sort of ongoing playability for me. Bring that one feature back to the game and I will purchase it.

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