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Marrend plays Heroes of Might and Magic 3 Complete!

I might not be up for a gaming diary this year, but, there is at least one more game I wish to share with the larger RMN community. If it has not been made obvious by the game title, it is...

Photo obtained from GameFAQs.

...Heroes of Might and Magic 3 Complete. This title is, as it suggests, a compilation of Heroes of Might and Magic 3 - Restoration of Erathia, with two expansions, Armageddon's Blade and Shadow of Death. While I no longer own my original copies, I did, at one point, own each of these titles individually. I can't really say when all this occurred, though.

Even if one takes just the base game, the number of heroes and units were expanded upon exponentially. As for other notable features, every unit associated with a faction can be upgraded. Rather than being limited to an army size of 5 slots, they cranked it up to 11 7. The way artifacts function were also revamped with a paper doll system, thus requiring heroes to equip artifacts in various slots to gain their benefits.

If there is one thing to lament, it's about the heroes, themselves. Sure, maybe using classic M&M NPCs was merely a marketing tool to sell the product, being a nudge-wink to players of those classic games. However, I kinda felt like having those characters exist was part of the magic of these games. This game? Gone. Wiped from existence. Only Sandro, Yog, Gem, Alamar, Lord Haart, Halon, and Crag Hack are all that is left. All the other heroes are characters I don't think appeared in a main-line Might and Magic game. Even the backstories of the classic characters (Yes, this game has character backstories for each hero!) are rewritten to be in the context of Erathia or Enroth, rather than the original world they came from.

That aside, this is still among the best games in the series. I'm aware that it's considered the best by a non-zero number of the fan-base. Perhaps this LP will relay reasons for that, either through gameplay, or other factors, as to why people might think that way. Of course, since it's me, you should expect the usual UGE shenanigans. Also, I've a high-definition mod applied. As for how I will approach this game, I'll start with the campaigns of Restoration of Erathia, then moving on to Armageddon's Blade, then Shadow of Death. I will also note that I will likely not update this thread as often as I have my previous ones, but, will likely provide about one post per scenario. I'll be pulling from this playlist for the town themes. Comments are welcome, as always!

Table of Contents:
  • Restoration of Erathia
Long Live the QueenScenario 1 - Homecoming
Scenario 2 - Guardian Angels
Scenario 3 - Griffin Cliff
Dungeons and DevilsScenario 1 - A Devlish Plan
Scenario 2 - Groundbreaking
Scenario 3 - Steadwick's Fall
Spoils of WarScenario 1 - Borderlands
Scenario 2 - Gold Rush
Scenario 3 - Greed
Long Live the KingScenario 1 - A Gryphon's Heart
Scenario 2 - Season of Harvest
Secnario 3 - Corporeal Punishment
Scenario 4 - From Day to Night
LiberationScenario 1 - Steadwick's Liberation
Scenario 2 - Deal With the Devil
Scenario 3 - Neutral Affairs
Scenario 4 - Tunnels and Troglodytes
Song for the FatherScenario 1 - Safe Passage
Scenario 2 - United Front
Scenario 3 - For King and Country
Seeds of DiscontentScenario 1 - The Grail
Scenario 2 - The Road Home
Scenario 3 - Independence

  • Armageddon's Blade
Armageddon's BladeScenario 1 - Catherine's Charge
Scenario 2 - Shadows of the Forest
Scenario 3 - Seeking Armageddon
Scenario 4 - Maker of Sorrows
Scenario 5 - Return of the King
Scenario 6 - A Blade in the Back
Scenario 7 - To Kill a Hero
Scenario 8 - Oblivion's Edge
Dragon's BloodScenario 1 - Culling the Week
Scenario 2 - Saving the Scavengers
Scenario 3 - Blood of the Dragon Father
Scenario 4 - Blood Thirsty
Festival of LifeScenario 1 - Razor Claw
Scenario 2 - Taming of the Wild
Scenario 3 - Clan War
Scenario 4 - For the Throne
Playing With FireScenario 1 - Farming Towns
Scenario 2 - March of the Undead
Scenario 3 - Burning of Tatalia
Dragon SlayerScenario 1 - Crystal Dragons
Scenario 2 - Rust Dragons
Scenario 3 - Faerie Dragons
Scenario 4 - Azure Dragons
Foolhardy WaywardnessScenario 1 - Lost at Sea
Scenario 2 - Their End of the Bargain
Scenario 3 - Here There Be Pirates
Scenario 4 - Hurry Up and Wait

  • Shadow of Death
New BeginningScenario 1 - Clearing the Border
Scenario 2 - After the Amulet
Scenario 3 - Retreiving the Cowl
Scenario 4 - Driving for the Boots
Elixir of LifeScenario 1 - Graduation Exercise
Scenario 2 - Cutthroats
Scenario 3 - Valley of the Dragon Lords

2022 Misao nomination monthly data

The purpose of this thread is to track 2022 Misao nominations on a monthly basis, and maybe throw a few notable games down for a basis of conversation.

Total nominations: 0
-Nominations closed due to being the voting period for 2020 Misaos
-Seasons of RMN 5

Notable Games
-My Computer Wants to Eat Me?
-Isekai Cowboy (Commercial)
-MARGO - On the Brink
-Ruthless Smile
-Today I Went on a Quest

Total nominations: 0 (+0)
-Seasons of RMN 5

Notable Games
-I'll Defeat the Monster From the Comfort of My Bed! Powernap Edition
-The Secret of Varonis
-A Ghostly Rose (Commercial)
-Izrand Allure
-Aida's Bizzard Halloween
-Potty Quest
-Before Crisis: Cissnei
-The Alley
-Eternal Remnant: The First Chapter
-5th Era (Commercial)

Total nominations: 1 (+1)
-Muffle's 1-Dungeon RPG Jam

Notable Games:
-Sophia & Shire
-Super Mario World X
-Ascension - Chronicle of Blackhaven
-The Great Gaias (Commercial)
-Transcendence Legacy - Voidswept (Commercial)
-President Chainsaw (Commercial)
-Yoshi Goes to Tesco
-Slay the Lizard of Lunenburg (and Other Thankless Sidequests)

Total nominations: 4 (+3)
-RamZ's Last Minute Resource Mak Evento

Notable Games:
-Succession: Rise of the Fallen Heir
-Monster World 4 RPG
-Super Mario Death Row 2: Shroomshak Redemption
-Reaper of the Starless Sea
-Devil of the Mirror Remake

Total nominations: TBA

Notable Games:

Avatar not updating/removal?

So, since it is now October, I thought to change my avatar to something more appropriate to the season. While the notification said that the change was applied, it seems to have removed the avatar instead. I can't seem to reapply my old avatar either?

2021 Misao nomination monthly data

The purpose of this thread is to track 2021 Misao nominations on a montly basis, and maybe throw a few notable games down for a basis of conversation.

Voting is now complete! The results are in this thread! Thanks to the winners, the nominees, and to those that participated!

Total nominations: 0
-Nominations closed due to being the voting period for 2020 Misaos
-Seasons 4 begins

Notable Games
-Blood & Grime (Best Game Profile, "Eye Candy" Award, Star Stealing Prince Award)
-The Disrupted Monarchs

Total nominations: 26 (+26)
-Seasons 4 ends
-Lonely Hearts Pixel Event begins
-Release Maker Birthday begins

Notable Games:
-Deer, You Are Being Hunted (Best Game Title, Year of the Deer)
-Legend of the Mystical Deer (Year of the Deer, Best Lawsuit Waiting to Happen, The Dark Souls of RMN)
-The Lady Puppet (Most Promising Demo)
-Sweet Middleground 4 (Summoner of Sounds, Best Game Profile, Best Event Game - Seasons 4)
-Decline (Summoner of Sounds)
-Purgatory 2 (Best Non-English Game)
-Epic Wings 2 (Sleeping Beetle Ninja)
-The Morning Star
-Fatal Runtime

Total nominations: 65 (+39)
-Release Maker Birthday ends

Notable Games:
-Yume Wheeky (Year of Deer, Best Game Title, Punniest Game Alive)
-A Thief's Voyage (Sleeping Beetle Ninja)
-Errevale Fall (Star Stealing Prince Award, Sleeping Beetle Ninja, Best Event Game - Release Maker Birthday)
-Cave Adventure R
-Succubus Shop
-Meteo Chronicles

Total nominations: 74 (+9)
-Lonely Hearts Pixel Event ends(?)
-1.44 Floppy Disk event begins/ends (Liberty's playlist)

Notable Games:
-Door of Shadows (Most Promising Demo)
-Super Mario Death Row (Best Lawsuit Waiting to Happen)
-AWE VS OZZY: The Game (Best Short Game, Punniest Game Alive)
-A Vacation in Nebula ("Eye Candy" Award, Best Short Game Award)
-Detective WaKa (Best Game Profile, Best Short Game Award, Punniest Game Alive, Best Event Game - 1.44 Floppy Disk event)
-Unchained ("Eye Candy" Award)
-Oh No! It's My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend! (Best Short Game Award)
-Unbit (The "How the Hell Did They Do That?" Award)
-Our Dark Heart (Most Promising Demo, Best Eye Candy, Excellence in Narrative)
-Magic Quest
-Tesseract Quest
-The Lonely League
-Too Impatient
-Dread the Rabbit

Total nominations: 88 (+14)
-Mapdaptation begins/ends

Notable Games:
-Final Fantasy Legend 3 Remake (Best Lawsuit Waiting to Happen)
-Castlevanina - The Lost Belmont (Best Lawsuit Waiting to Happen)
-Darkest Dreams Remake (Sleeping Beetle Ninja)
-Forget-me-Not (Sleeping Beetle Ninja)
-Placebo Love (Best Commercial Game)
-The Dungeons of Mysteria (Best Commercial Game)
-Carpentry Story
-ChkenQuest 2K3 - Rise of the Chimkin

Total nominations: 93 (+5)
-RMNs 14th Birthday
-Fuck Pride, Here's Some Gay

Notible Games:
-Everlasting Journey ("Everlasting Journey" Award)
-Rejection - An RMN Birthday Game (Punniest Game Alive)
-The Bloodlust Curse of Dracula (Best Lawsuit Waiting to Happen)

Total nominations: 103 (+10)
-Fuck Pride, Here's Some Gay
-Gamepage Glories

Notable Games:
-Starless Umbra (Best Commercial Game, Most Promising Demo)
-None Pizza with Left Beef: Chapter 2 (Best Game Profile, Best in Positive Diversity, Best Event Game - Fuck Pride, here's some gay)
-Copper Odyssey (Best Commercial Game)
-Forest Star

Total Nominations: 119 (+16)
-Theme Roulette 4 (Liberty's playlist)

Notible Games:
-Tales of Yuria - Mausoleum of the Gods
-Wizard Kings
-Soma Union

Total Nominations: 157 (+38)
-No events this month

Notable Games:
-Triple Triad - Tornament of the Elements (Best Lawsuit Waiting to Happen)
-Chicken Blood (Best Short Game, Punniest Game Alive, Best Event Game - Theme Roulette 4)
-Wild Garden Mystery Dungeon (Year of the Deer)
-Uchioniko MZ (108% self-promotion pick)

Total Nominations: 179 (+22)
-Commonplace Book (Mirak's playlist)

Notable Games:
-Divided Reigns (Best Commercial Game)
-Beetle Ninja 2 (Sleeping Beetle Ninja)
-The Monastery
-Keeper of the Fog
-Lost Colossus
-Forgotten Water's Silent Voice
-Notes From Province

Total Nominations: 273 (+94)
-Nomination November

Notable Games:
-Draug's Resurrection (Not Dead Yet)

Total Nominations: 419 (+146)
-Secret Santa
-Jingle Jangle Jam

Notable Games:
-RMN Holiday Calendar

2021 Gaming Diary

Want to keep track of all the games you've played this year? Look no further! This thread is for you!

I kinda want to direct the thread into making a "main post" like this one, while making commentary every so often either about what others are playing, or a comment about a thing you've done in whatever you've got cooking.

Previous Gaming History threads:

Marrend's diary.
Cap_H's diary
Backwards_Coyboy's diary
AtiyaTheSeeker's diary
Vaccaria's diary

Marrend plays The Outer Worlds!

So far, I've done LPs of games I've played numerous times. I might not recall every single detail correctly, but, the fact remains that there are things to remember. However, this time, I'm going in completely new and fresh. I have no idea what I'm doing, what's ahead, or what the consequences of my choices are. The game in question is...

...The Outer Worlds!

I think it was last year that Fallout 76 released. The hype it built! Of finally having a Fallout MMO! To be able to play Fallout with friends! To say the least, the game had issues. Perhaps it says something about the AAA industry that it was expected that some bugs would persist past the Q&A department. Perhaps there was pressure from the public to release the game before it was ready? Maybe it was from the higher ups in corporate? I don't know. All I really know is that the game launched, and was largely considered a buggy mess. Couple that with reports of mold detected in the helmets of certain Collector's Edition bundles, plus the debacle of the Fallout 1st subscription service, the game's issues were compounded upon. It drew a lot of hate, and, if you excuse the pun, fallout from some of it's fanbase.

At some point, enter Obsidian, and their offering of The Outer Worlds. They took what they learned/knew from working on Fallout: New Vegas, and put their own spin on it. Obsidian's timing couldn't haven been better. To those suffering from Fallout 76's bugs, and/or the obviously-aging engine of Fallout 4, it was the breath of fresh air a number of Fallout fans wanted/needed.

Going a bit back to Fallout, game I mostly recently played in that series was Fallout: New Vegas on PS3. Even then, I didn't get very far. Still, Fallout 3 was among the first games I had on that console, and played it to completion even if only once. Post-apocalyptic games in general kinda feel off my radar entirely after Wasteland 2. I loved that the game's major characters included the default party members from the original, and gave them personalities, as a kind of callback. Still, just something about it seemed off, and I quit playing at some point. I haven't really looked back since, for good or ill.

If I am to be perfectly honest, though, The Outer Worlds probably wouldn't have been on my radar at all were it not for a round-table discussion of the game by AngryJoe. If nothing else, the skit at the beginning of the video is downright hilarious, go watch it.

This is were I usually say that the game will be hacked, or otherwise use cheat codes. Not to mention a playlist where I grab tracks from. This is not the case here. I'm playing it straight, and I'd rather experience the music first-hand before considering fetching a playlist. That aside, I would welcome commentary on my bad decisions in-game, or other commentary about the game in general!

Table of contents
Session 1 - Old Unreliable
Session 2 - The edge of Edgewater
Session 3 - Meeting at the botanical lab
Session 4 - Takin' care of business
Session 5 - Archive Trap
Session 6 - Choice of evils lie before my feet! Retreat! Retreat! Retreat!
Session 7 - A choice made; a system to explore
Session 8 - Impounded at the Groundbreaker
Session 9 - Outer Worlds becomes open-world
Session 10 - Takin' care of business, my way
Session 11 - Completing all the quests, and then some!
Session 12 - Side-questing in Denerim Stellar Bay, part 37
Session 13 - Mopping up messes on Monarch
Session 14 - Ripples of the Space-Crime Continuum
Session 15 - Finally off of Monarch!
Session 16 - But I was just goddamn THERE!?
Session 17 - Byzantium, the Golden City
Session 18 - A Hope skips into the heart of Man
Session 19 - Freeing Phineas, and the final send-off

Misaos 2020 - Discussion Topic

Hey, everybody! It's that time of year again! The time of year to discuss...

...Misaos! Here's some highlight games, courtesy of LordBlueRouge, to get the discussion started.

I could not find harmless' Lockheart Indigo here, which LBR did mention in this post. However, as a commercial game, it might not be able to be nominated if it was properly flagged here. Also, while Cover Your Eyes was also mentioned in LBR's post, it is also a commercial game.

So! Thoughts? Considerations? Additions? Subtractions?

Voting has begun! Please cast your vote before January 31st 2021! Remember! Don't walk! RUN to the Misaos!

Also, if you manage to fill out your ballot PM a screencap to Liberty for a chance to win a copy of RPG Maker MV! Thanks for your support of the Misaos, Liberty!

Here's a short-list of the games you can vote for, and how many categories they are in:
New Eden - 11 categories
Exile's Journey - 10 categories
Weird and Unfortunate Things are Happening - 10 categories
Bettle Ninja - 8 categories
THERAPIST: Mind Manager - 6 categories
Moonsong: First Verse - 5 categories
Stories of New Eden - 3 categories
Phileas's Mirror - 2 categories
Midnight Train - 2 categories
Slimes - 2 categories
Shadow Seeker - 2 categories
Shooty and the Catfish: Fully Reloaded - 2 categories
Two Strangers: The Third Stranger - 2 categories
The MirBox - 1 category
Bounty Angel 2 - 1 category
Two Strangers Survive the Zombie Apocalypse - 1 category
LABYRINTH - Derelict Abyss - 1 category
The game with no name - 1 category
Soma Union - 1 category

Marrend plays Heroes of Might and Magic 2!

Well, it's decided. I originally didn't think it was worth doing an LP of this particular game. However, as you can see, here I am again. This thread's game is quite possibly my favorite game of all time...

Photo obtained via Wikipeda

...Heroes of Might and Magic 2 - The Succession Wars. I first got this game new and for the DOS platform back in 1996. There was no question I would get it. My friends (at the time) were pretty avid about the original Heroes, and we played it over hot seat at my then-house quite a bit over the summer of '95. We did similarly with this game too, so, like the World of Xeen LP, a bit of a trip down memory lane here.

The original Heroes of Might and Magic - A Strategic Quest, while certainly a spin-off of the main-line series, was something of a spiritual successor of a game New World Computing released in 1990 called King's Bounty. NWC managed two Heroes games before being acquired by 3DO. Likewise, 3DO managed two games before the Might and Magic license was sold to Ubisoft, who still retain the rights to the license as of this writing. To date, Ubisoft has made three games in the Heroes series.

With Heroes 2, the graphics got a serious overhaul, which was desperately needed. The unit graphics in the original Heroes is what I would call "cartoony". Spriters-resource provides ample examples of what I'm talking about. The battlefield was expanded, though, heroes are still limited to having up to five unit stacks in their army. New to this game, and games in the series going forward (as far as I'm aware) are secondary skills. Some skills were created to emulate the benefit of having a certain type from the original game. Such as Leadership (morale bonus) for Knights, Pathfinding (terrain movement penalty reduction) for Barbarians, Navigation (extra movement on water) for Sorceresses, and Scouting (the visual range of the hero increases) for Warlocks. Two factions were also included into the mix as well, Wizards and Necromancers, making the roster of possible heroes to hire expand greatly.

The original game used various characters, usually NPCs, from the main-line series for it's heroes (hense the title!) and this game throws a few more familiar faces in our direction. However, there are, however, a few original characters thrown into the mix that have no such background, as it were.

This LP will go through the Archibald campaign first, then the cannonical Roland campaign. I'll probably do one map per session. Naturally, I will be using Jack Hartman's Universal Game Editor, and David Melason's quite exhaustive (if not as complete for my taste) module for the game.

Music-wise, I will pull tracks from this playlist, with the sub-note that the original Succession Wars town tracks will be pulled from this playlist. Though, I will also provide the town tracks from the expansion, Price of Loyalty because most of them are better in my opinion.

Table of Contents:
  • Archibald's Campaign
Session 1 - Scenario 1: First Blood
Session 2 - Secnario 2: Barbarian Wars
Session 3 - Scenario 3: Necromancers
Session 4 - Scenario 5: Turning Point
Session 5 - Scenario 6: Rebellion
Session 6 - Scenario 8: Country Lords
Session 7 - Scenario 10: Greater Glory
Session 8 - Scenario 11: Apocalypse

  • Roland's Campaign
Session 9 - Scenario 1: Force of Arms
Session 10 - Scenario 2: Annexation
Session 11 - Scenario 4: Carator Mines
Session 12 - Scenario 5: Turning Point and Scenario 6: Defender
Session 13 - Scenario 7: The Gauntlet
Session 14 - Scenario 9: Corlagon's Defense
Session 15 - Scenario 10: Final Justice

Marrend plays World of Xeen!

There was a lot of internal debate to do another LP period. Much less what game to play. However, I decided to go back to the early 90's, for a bit of Might and Magic mayhem. Not just any game in the series, obviously, but...

Photos obtained via the Wikipedia pages of Clouds of Xeen and Darkside of Xeen.

...World of Xeen. This game is something of a marketing genius plot that I'm not quite sure if I've encountered since. The only way to get "World of Xeen" is by installing both Might and Magic 4 - Clouds of Xeen and Might and Magic 5 - Darkside of Xeen into the same directory. The game has a lot of similarities to Might and Magic 3 - Isles of Terra, but, there are some quality-of-life upgrades that I will mention later.

I think my decision to LP this game is because it has a certain nostalgia factor for me. Well, okay. You could probably argue that for the entire main-line series. Like, I originally played Might and Magic - Secret of the Inner Sanctum on the Commodore 64, back in the late 80's. I was probably around 7 years old, and had no clue what the hell I was supposed to do. This remains true to this very day, and I've still yet to complete the game. Might and Magic 2 - Gates to Another World is a slightly different story, but not by much. My first play of that was still in the late 80's, and I may have had a cluebook, but, I don't think I managed to beat the thing until much later. I want to say the mid-90's, but, I'm not sure. I kinda skipped over Might and Magic 3 - Isles of Terra for a number of years, and even Might and Magic 4 - Clouds of Xeen wasn't obtained until a bit later. However, I think I pretty much got Might and Magic 5 - Darkside of Xeen relatively new. Which would be around 1993, or thereabouts. At one point, I had the CD release of World of Xeen (the game-box pictured above) on a "just because" basis. Unfortunately, the only remaining copies I have of the original 5 entries of the series comes from my Might and Magic 6 - Mandate of Heaven Limited Edition CD. Though, I still have the original instruction manual for MM2, and the original maps of MM1 (it's barely holding together) and MM2 (this one saw less punishment, but is still very old).

I will be using Jack Hartman's Universal Game Editor, and the Xeen modules made by David Melanson to alleviate/mitigate girding. Would it be a "Marrend Plays!" thread without a lot of little cheating?

That aside, we've got two playlists I'll be pulling from. For MM4/Clouds, I'll generally be using this, and for MM5/Darkside, this. I'll try to note if I diverge from these lists. I will note right away that the intro and ending cut-scenes will have a separate source.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to put them in the thread!

Table of contents:
  • Clouds of Xeen
Session 1 - Screw this! Let's make a character! Six, even!
Session 2 - Our first four areas.
Session 3 - Witches and Bat Queens and Gnome Vampires! Oh my!
Session 4 - Goin' real deep into the Red Dwarf Range, here!
Session 5 - We call it Newbridge Newcastle because we built a new bridge castle here FIVE HUNDRED years ago.
Session 6 - Main-line Quest acquired! Prepare to avoid engage!
Session 7 - Yak, the Terror Golem
Session 8 - Illusion of Gaia Darzog
Session 9 - The Clouds are falling!
  • Darkside of Xeen
Session 10 - Castleview, and Ellinger's Tower
Session 11 - Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom Bark
Session 12 - Onward! To Sandcaster!
Session 13 - Unphasing Castle Kalidra
Session 14 - Taking the scenic route to Castle Blackfang!
Session 15 - The last, best hope for Xeen
Session 16 - The end of Darkside, and of an era
  • World of Xeen
Session 16 - We get halfway pretty quick, but the other half, weeeelll...
Session 17 - It's the end of the World of Xeen as we know it! And I feel fiiiiiine!

Sort by Total Downloads timing out?

I noticed a discussion on Discord concerning this. Be that as it may, attempting to sort games by total downloads, and no other filter, seems to generate a "system is down" page after maybe a minute of load-time.

There's currently a few workarounds for this. One is to apply at least one other filter to the search. Such as narrowing by engine, or maybe a minimum rating of 0.5, or whatever. Checking the "Download Available" checkbox seems to make the first page load (I have not tried other pages), though it still seems to take about a minute of load-time.
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