Might & Magic Heroes VI Unearths A Demo

Monsters can be heroes, only not in this game.
Ah yes, that nagging feeling at the base of my skull was there for a reason: there was a demo of Might & Magic Heroes VI released this weekend. A portly 4.24gb download (some 22,000 Peggles, if my maths be remembered correctly) contains three campaign maps from the full game, and therefore a decent chunk of game time.

Why not have a read of Alec’s preview of the full game here, and then carefully make a list of how his opinion differs from yours? That would be a strange thing to do. The game is out on October 13th.


  1. Srekel says:

    Ok, for those of you who have played it: Is it good? In particular, does the “dumbing down” where they’ve removed some of the resources matter? Sounds like it could be fine to me, though I’d probably miss them a little.

    Also I quite liked the initiative/speed calculations for HoMM5 – in that a fast creature would be able to attack more times than a slow one, rather than just be first in the turn. Is that still in? And am I wrong?

    • MrMud says:

      Homm5 initiative is gone.
      About resources its hard to say from the limited missions I played in the beta (only played the 3 tutorial missions as I didnt want to spoil any story by jumping into a campaign in the middle of the story).

    • TormDK says:

      Initiative in the beta only allows your fast units to act sooner. You do not get additional turns, per turn, for being fast.

      Good morale gives an extra action at what seems like 25% strength.

    • Danarchist says:

      Homm6 is to homm5 as Dragon age 2 was to Dragon Age Origins.
      That was as painful to write as it is to read I imagine hehe.

      The good is the AI doesn’t seem to build up quite as fast as the last game. You do not have to rush to hunt them down before they hit god sized stack mode like in 5. The downside is the AI will send wave after wave of kamikaze hero’s at you that beeline for any keep you were silly enough not to leave troops in. It is really a pain to have to keep a “Goal Keeper” hero behind.

      They also have toned down the magic heroes a good bit. The majority of spells are available to both might and magic heroes and, at least in current beta build, the damage does not scale well. Most magic heroes are wise to mainly take healing and buffing spells with one of the two decent damage spells (fire, air). What I ended up doing was just using a might hero and giving him the heal spell. I think they overcompensated for the silly amount of power mid-end game magic heroes had in 5.

      The town graphics are gone, it’s a spreadsheet now. Oddly, this is the thing that pissed me off the most. I think its silly but it really bothered me.

      Still fun after all that though. I did play it for about 11 hours since Thursday.

    • goodhegood says:

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      link to tinyurl.com

    • vecordae says:

      It’s decent, but I am not digging on quite the way I did with HOMM5. The comment about it being the equivalent of DA2 seems appropriate, at least as far as the demo shows. It’s basically HOMM5, with fewer factions, fewer units, and a better UI and slightly updated art style.

    • outoffeelinsobad says:

      Agreed with vecordae. Not digging it.

  2. Sidorovich says:

    Four flippin’ gigs! I’ll have to wait until a proper games mag puts a demo on a cover disc. Do they still do those?

    • UnravThreads says:

      Yes. PC Gamer (UK at least) does a double-sided DVD, but I think even 4.2GB might be pushing it.

    • mingster says:

      Would only take 20minutes at the most to download on Virgin 50mb broadband. Treat yourself to an upgrade.

    • Magnetude says:

      Yeah Sidorovich, quit living in an area without fibre optic cables, you’re making us all look poor…

  3. pakoito says:

    HOMM V runs flawlessly on my netbook. I guess this one would not :(

    • origo says:

      Laptop that runs kings bounty nicely is lagging badly when running homm6 beta on low settings.

    • pakoito says:

      It’s weird but I could never run King’s Bounty properly because of bad sound problems, the framerate was shit but still playable, but having some old man coughing over my music and sound effects made me uninstall it.

  4. Magnetude says:

    Reply fail.

  5. Vayl says:

    As much as I want another HOMM, being Ubisoft puts a question of wether to give money to people like tthis.

  6. ZIGS says:

    Do we need to be always online to play the demo?

    • Sidorovich says:

      Well the full game has confirmed it will be shipping sans Ubiholes always online DRM, so surely the demo will be shorn of such draconian measures too?

    • TormDK says:

      I preoredered the game already which gives Beta access, and you will be required to log into uPlay before the game will start, so there is a always-on feature included.

      That being said I find the game great! I’m a huge fan of the Might and Magic world, and the team that put together HoMM VI seems to care a great deal about the franchise. There’s alot of love and attention to detail I’ve found in the beta.

  7. Kill_The_Drive says:

    Ubisoft game and a DEMO? I guess that’s a first… at least in a long time. I bet even the demo has DRM.

    I stand corrected. It has DRM.

  8. Anjiro says:

    Ooh nice, i’ve been itching to try the beta.

  9. psyk says:

    “So they have ditched 5s rubbish town screen and gone back to the good old school ones? or do they just have a button?

    link to youtube.com – old town screen”

    “They have ditched it completely and made it a static picture that isn’t even full screen.”

    WHY, For what reason??????????????????? :(

    • Wetworks says:

      It’s true, there are no more full sized city screens. They make up for it a little by showing the changes to your city on the campaign map. I believe the small picture also shows changes as well.

  10. WrongThinker says:

    Hearing things like “initiative doesn’t work the way it did in 5” and “there are only 4 resources” really have me worried. I’ll try to check out the demo later tonight, but I may just skip this one and wait for 7. I don’t understand how a developer can back-peddle so quickly from something so good.

  11. Mac says:

    I just get a Magcore.dll is missing error when I try and launch it – doh!

  12. moarage says:

    never played MM games but I thought it was pretty good and actually sparked my interest, might actually pick it up on launch…if it doesn’t have the awful ubi drm

    haven’t played to mp yet cause it looked time consuming since it is turnbased

    • WrongThinker says:

      Sadly, it is my understanding that it DOES contain the awful DRM. Also, it seems as though it is a step back from HoMMV in several ways (combat and resource management both got a downgrade). I haven’t actually put my hands on it yet… perhaps later tonight… but at this point I’m recommended you go back and check out HoMMV. It’ll be cheaper AND better.

  13. Elusiv3Pastry says:

    The demo was quite a pleasant surprise. I’ve played every HOMM game to death and back since the original, except for V, which I absolutely hated. I wasn’t expecting much from VI but I gave it a shot anyway, and found myself unable to stop. The demo is quite long (about 3-4 hours), and runs through the first two missions.

    This is a much more deliberate, serious, and slow-paced strategy game compared to the previous iterations and King’s Bounty (which I’ve also played to death). The campaign map isn’t as busy, but there are still resources and items to gather. The tactical map is fairly large, so there’s a decent amount of room to maneuver, and the animations and sounds are all top notch (though I think they still need to finish the hero attack animations). Traditional HOMMM spells appear to be confined to hero skills, rather than being learned at mage guilds (unless that’s a later part in the full game). There’s also a ricockulous amount of new skills/spells that have been added as part of this, not all of which require mana. The skill trees here are really quite massive. The town-view is different than what we’re used to. There’s a build menu that’s just a flat 2d grid with options, but once you build something you’ll see the additional building on both the campaign map and in the 3d view of the town in the main town menu.

    They appear to have tweaked the dreaded online Ubi DRM into a value-added approach.This wasn’t active in the demo, but it seems you don’t have to be online to play (unless they change that later); instead, if you’re online you can start a mission with a choice of small bonuses (resources, artifacts, etc.), and can also interact with some portal thingy on the campaign map (not sure what it will do; my guess is that it will act like a signpost that gives tips or something).

    Really looking forward to this one now; I think it will make up for Heroes V.

  14. Dominic White says:

    As an aside, HoMM5 was pretty rough at launch, but through expansions and fan-patches it grew into probably the best game in the series so far.

    I just assembled a new version of my Content Pack, which, when applied to HoMM: Tribes of The East (the final standalone expansion) bulks it out with all the content from the original game and the first expansion, as well as a fan-patch that addresses bugs, improves AI and system performance, and adds a lot more options to play around with in skirmish mode.

    Here it is: link to multiupload.com

    To clarify: You ONLY need Tribes of The East for this. The ports of the earlier campaigns were done with Ubisofts blessing, so that the newer features from the later versions of the game could be applied to the earlier content.

  15. Spider Jerusalem says:

    Rather disappointed. I’m not sure I see a point in playing this over HOMM3, really.

  16. Shadax says:

    I know I have spent two years feasting at the strategy bacchanalia that is King’s Bounty and it’s assorted expansions, but going back to a square grid (a square grid that people can move diagonally on! between enemy units even!) and zone of control makes me absolutely incapable of understanding the strategy in this game.

  17. kingofmadcows says:

    I am not impressed by the demo.

    The town screen sucks, it doesn’t even give you any information on creature growth.

    Creatures are much tougher now so battles tend to drag on longer than necessary.

    Maps are still smaller than they were in Heroes 2 and 3, maybe even 4.

    The new skill system really hurts magic focused heroes. Offensive spells do very little damage, they cost a lot of mana, and they have a cooldown. Plus spells are now learned by spending skill points and you only get one skill point per level.

  18. bjarked says:

    Hey I will just make a list of all the good and bad things in HMM

    Bad tings
    ( excuse my bad writing )
    1 the town screen is small and sucks
    2 only 4 resources
    3 bad level up system you need much more experience per level
    4 hero special skill suck it doesn’t really make a difference in the game like it does in the past games
    5 the skills you can pick sucks the don’t make a difference also there are no hiden skills and all race have almost the same skills to pick from and that is really boring
    6 magic does suck attacking does more damage then spells does
    7 orks can use normal magic and not blood magic
    8 ugly damage pop ups (when a troop hits a noder troop and you can se damage and kills)
    9 no big army of farmers or imp and stuff now you have 3 creatures in town level 1 and 3 creatures in town level 2 and 1 creature in town level 3

    Good things
    1 blood and tears level system
    2 graphic and animations are impressive
    3 territory are good but not perfect they should work a little more
    4 good story