- Dec 11, 2018
We recently covered the fundraiser that was set up to release the long lost Dreamcast port of Heroes of Might and Magic III for the Dreamcast. If you're not sure what that last sentence even means, here's an info dump: Heroes of Might and Magic III was a best-selling PC strategy game featuring a fantasy setting in which players could command armies across a vast campaign and was scheduled for a Dreamcast release back in the early 2000s before Sega ditched the Dreamcast, everything was cancelled and the entire house burnt down...or so you might think.
According to the developer it was actually because the game was too big for the Dreamcast system to handle:
"Heroes of Might and Magic III was not canceled because the Dreamcast was discontinued or anything, but because it failed due to the technical limitations. The game was technically too big for the Dreamcast, and since 3DO / NewWorldComputing and thus Ubisoft only wanted to see it published as a 1:1 conversion on the Dreamcast, eventually a point was reached at which the Dreamcast was basically just technically overwhelmed."
Read the full thread at Dreamcast Talk here. Regardless, Heroes of Might and Magic III was once categorised as one of the most famous 'lost' Dreamcast games - of which there are many - but now, thanks to the awesome Dreamcast community, it is now available to sample (in beta form, that is).
This is down to the work of Dreamcast collector and YouTuber FatalistDC and Dreamcast expert Jan Baumgartner. We salute them both, naturally. After a small fundraiser (which was achieved, again due to the Dreamcast community), Heroes of Might and Magic III has been dumped online after 20 years in the wilderness. And you, dear reader, can download it and play it either in your actual Dreamcast console, or using an emulator. Unfortunatley, I'm unable to run the game myself through an emulator as I use an Apple Mac, and lxdream seems to have been abandoned (it doesn't run on Catalina); while ReDream doesn't recognise the GDI or CDI version. Maybe you'll have better luck.
- It's a beta, version 0.800, not a final version. It's a Windows CE game.
- It crashes randomly. It can crash on the FMV intro or when loading.
- There are options or menus where the game always crashes, for example going to the Thieve's Guild in the Tavern always crashes the game. Again, it's an unfinished beta. The original GD-R has always been like this.
- In my opinion I think maybe this game could be canceled due to memory problems. In addition to the reason why so many games were canceled.
- For me this game would have been one of the best Dreamcast games in terms of quality. Wonderful music, great artwork, etc. Heroes III is considered the best game in the saga.