FAQ - Guide for Heroes of Might and Magic
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Heroes of Might and Magic FAQ V0.8a This quarterly publication is intended to offer tips and address some of the frequently asked questions (FAQ) on the strategy game Heroes of Might and Magic by New World Computing. Because the answers may not be complete, please feel free to ask questions. This FAQ is not intended to answer questions that can be located in the manual. If you need to know how to learn a spell or how to move troops from one hero to another, buy the game and read the manual. The information in this FAQ are from personal experience, numerous posters on comp.sys.ibm.pc.strategic and George Ruof & Clay from New World Computing. Some stats are taken from article reviews (paraphrased of course). If you would like to contribute information to this FAQ, write sections that has not been completed, or have questions about this game, make spelling/grammatical corrections (English is not my native tongue), please feel free and send me an email at [email protected] with the subject line containing the words "HoMM FAQ". This FAQ is not complete. A MS-Word 6.0 version of this document is also available by request. Last Update: February 3, 1995 ***This will be the last update to the FAQ until the Windoze 95 version comes out. It would be nice if I can get a evaluation copy so I can update this FAQ (HINT! HINT! George and Clay! :) ) 1. What is it?/Answers to FAQ 2. General Tips 3. Cracking the AI 4. Tips on different creatures 5. Tips on Campaign 6. Tips on Single Scenarios 7. Add-ons/Windoze `95 News 8. Gripes/Suggestions. 1. What is it?/Answers to FAQ ### What is it? I hear the game is like MOM! Heroes of Might and Magic (HoMM) is a fantasy- strategy game put out by New World Computing. Many people compared this game to Warlords II (WAR2) and Master of Magic (MOM) because of their similar style in play and strategic planning. It's more like a hybrid of WAR2 with the addition of spells, castle building, and a combat sequence similar to Master of Orion (MOO). Many of the creatures in this game are from an older game called "King's Bounty", also published by NWC in 1991. "King's Bounty" will be included as a bonus in the Windoze '95 version of HoMM (To be released in February or March) ### Is there a multi-player option? HoMM allows modem, network, and hot-seat play. The network play is via Netbios although many people on the net reported problems with the network setup. ### What are the requirements to run this game? HoMM requires a VESA compatible video card, SVGA monitor, CD-ROM drive (other requirements are on the box that's not in front of me.) ### How about a description of the game play? You start off with a hero with a group of monsters for the hero to lead. You can have as many as 8 heroes at the same time. The hero starts off in a castle where you can build different type of buildings by providing resources such as wood, coal, gold, mercury, etc. There are different type of buildings providing different functions. Some provide production of different monster troops. Some provide spells for the heroes to learn. Some provide scouting information and such. The resources you will need can be obtained by controlling a mine with a hero or have the hero scout out for the resource piles that can be located throughout the map. (mines provide one or two units of resource per mine type per day depending on the resource type - for example, a coal mine controlled by you will provide you two units of coals per day. You can take control of other castles and towns. Buying recruitable troops and building buildings in a castle all require gold. Gold can be obtained either from a mine (1000/day), castle (1000/day), or a town (250/day). A town/castle can provide recruitable troops depending on what type of buildings it has. There is a set number of recruitable troops available each week. Once you recruited all the available troops, you must wait until the following week if you want to recruit more troops. ### What is the object of the game? The object of the game depends on the type of scenario. Most of the single scenario series require you to defeat all other players. In some campaign scenario, you will be required to find the "Ultimate Artifact" or to defeat the "Dragon Fortress". ### How do I install the DOS version in Windoze '95? Many people reported problems installing from within Windoze '95. The DOS/4GW with the DOS version of HoMM just chokes during the installation. (I didn't have problem with XCOM and Warcraft 2 which also use DOS/4GW) What you do is before you install, start the computer in DOS mode, install, then you can play HoMM in the Windoze mode. ### The Fuzzy Logic on the number of monsters While it was a good idea to give a approximation of the number of monsters contained within an enemy stack, it would've been a better idea to also include the equivalent of theses approximations in the manual :). Also, it's kinda hard to tell which description means more than another with these words (and may confuse foreign players). I think Warlords 2 uses the length of the flag in a army stack to indicate the number of units in a stack, maybe something similar will show up in HoMM2. Well, here's the chart: Few---------------1 to 4 Several-----------5 to 9 Pack-------------10 to 19 Lots-------------20 to 49 Horde------------50 to 99 Zounds!----------100+ ### Moral/Luck Boost Good moral will allow some of your creatures to attack twice in a turn during the combat. Bad moral will stop your creature from attacking during a turn. Good luck will allow some of your creatures to do double the normal damage during that single attack round. Moral and luck can be raised and lowered by several factors. * Visit fountains, statues, etc. will raise moral/luck, but these will only last for one battle. * Artifacts carried by the hero can also increase moral/luck. * A Knight hero gives the stack +1 moral. * If you have a stack of creature from the same type of castle, you get +1 moral. * If you have a stack of creatures from 3 different types of castle, you get -1 moral. * Remember, Genies, Rogues, and Nomads are another type. * If you have a stack of creatures from 4 different types of castle, you get -2 moral. ###Can I remove a Cursed Artifact? NO. Avoid it since you can tell what it looks like. It's basically a blue pendent. You can also tell when the computer simply ignores that artifact. If you do acquire it, the only way to get rid of it is the kill off the hero. If the hero is a high leveled one, you might want to keep it and give the hero some other artifacts to offset this penalty. ###Attack and Defense! The damage inflicted by a creature is increased or decreased by 10% for every point of difference between the attacker's ATTACK score and the defender's DEFENSE score. Example #1: 1 Attacking Dwarf has ATTACK=6 DEFENSE=5 DAMAGE=2-4 1 Defending Minotaur has ATTACK=9 DEFENSE=8 DAMAGE=5-10 When the Dwarf Attacks Minotaur, the Dwarf's ATTACK score is 2 less than the Minotaur's DEFENSE score, so the actual damage is (Amount of Damage)x((Def's DEF) - (Att's ATT))% which is (2, 3, or 4) x 80%. I think the final number is rounded up because you never see anybody dealing 0 damage. ###Where's the *@&!^# Ultimate Artifact? It's usually in the middle 4 squares of the map, and the puzzle pieces covering that section are usually the last one to go away. If you figured out where the puzzle map is on the big map, you can use several heroes to dig in the center area. ### What the *#(&^$ is the Attack Order? Please verify this if anybody have factual answers to this. From observation and a couple of people from the net, it's as follows: The Attacker's first FAST creature goes first, then the defender's first FAST creature, if either side run out of FAST creatures, the remaining FAST creature from the other side will go. This repeats for medium and slow. Example: Defender: Paladin (FAST) Cavalry (FAST) Archer (SLOW) Attacker: Phoenix (FAST) Elf (Medium) Dwarf (SLOW) Order ----- Attacker's FAST - Phoenix Defender's FAST - Paladin Attacker's FAST - None Defender's FAST - Cavalry Attacker's Med. - Elf Defender's Med. - None Attacker's Slow - Dwarf Defender's Slow - Archer I seem to recall Cavalry going before the Paladin though. so I may be wrong on this :( 2. General Tips Heroes Heroes play a very important role in this game. Heroes can travel outside of the castle by itself or with a group of monsters (a stack). Most of the heroes have "attributes" that can increase its ability to win a combat or increase attributes of it's troops. These are like "skills" that can increase with experience or with an artifact. These attributes are: Attack (A), Defense (D), Skill (S), and Power (P). The hero's Attack and Defense attributes are added to the monsters contained within the same stack as the hero. So a group of 50 peasants with attack and defense of 1 might be a easy kill, but if they are grouped with a hero with the attributes of A:15 and D:15, the peasants become monsters with the attack and defense of 16. The ability of a monster to hit another monster is increased/decreased by 10% for every difference of a point between the attacker's Attack attribute and defender's Defense attribute. (Table and equation to be inserted in the next version of FAQ) Constructing your Stacks Most of the people will have multiple heroes, but only one that they concentrate on by giving him/her most of the experience points and magic items in a way that they construct a "ultimate stack/hero" with this hero. Once constructed, this ultimate stack is very hard to kill off. The computer doesn't seem to do this so their forces are a little more spread out. When arranging monsters with the hero, place your range strikers on the left-most and right- most slots. When you are in a combat, the left- most slot monster will appear at the top-most slot in the battle scene, and the right-most slot monster will appear at the bottom-most slot, so the least amount of monsters can fly up to them and attack them. If you place any monsters that takes up 2 spaces (wolves, Griffins) right next to your range strikers, the range strikers can only be attack by one flyer group of monsters at a time. Types of Heroes Barbarian - A Barbarian hero will usually increase attacking skills when they get more experienced. The monsters lead by a Barbarian hero are fairly good on damaging opponents, but only OK in defense. The biggest plus the Barbarian has is no penalty on movement over different terrain. This could come in handy when you want to grab all the resource piles in a swamp, desert, of tundra area without having to spend too much time. They are especially handy in deserts if there are unguarded Genie lamps laying around. Barbarians have average movement, average sight range, and poor magic. Warlock - A Warlock hero will usually increase spell power when they get more experienced. This could be deadly if the warlock has any offensive spells such as Armageddon, Lightning Bolt, Fireball and such. A powerful warlock combined with a group of dragons and the Armageddon spell could be real deadly. The other special power warlock has is the ability to see further than the other type of heroes. This ability is only useful at the beginning of the game because once you explore an area of a map, you won't have to have somebody in that general area to see that area of the map. The "Fog of War" option in Warcraft 2 would add some good strategic twist to the game. Warlocks have good movement, great sight range, and poor attack/defense. Knight - A Knight hero will usually increase defense power when they get more experienced. I personally find this the best attribute over the others. A stack of 20 dragons with a +10 defense from a hero will beat a stack of 50 dragons with a +1 defense. The knight's special attribute is increase in moral for the monsters. When you group of 50 archers gets a moral boost and attacks twice, that's 2x2 = 4 attacks that can wipe out most of the stacks. Knights have poor movement, average sight range, and poor magic. Sorceress - I don't know why they don't use Witches-Warlocks and Wizards-Sorceress, but anyway, a Sorceress hero will usually increase in spell knowledge when they get more experienced. This could be handy if you have the paralyze spell so you can use it to get multiple attacks in before you opponent can even retaliate. The special power for the Sorceress is extra movement while in water. Sorceress have good movement, good sight range, and poor attack/defense. Castles There are usually 5 different levels of monster housing you can build to start producing these monsters for recruitment for each castle. Other than that, most of the other structures for a castle is pretty much the same. Some people find it better to quickly build up a mage tower, while others will concentrate on the monster housings first. It might be better for Sorceress/Wizards to build up a mage tower first because of the spell power they have, but either way, it'll be up to you to weigh the advantage of having spells in the beginning or more powerful monster in the beginning. Barbarian - A barbarian castle/hero combo is considered to be the weakest by most people, but I find them very useful. The one monster you don't want to overlook are the trolls with regenerating ability. You can build a bridge that creates trolls on the first week (If you have the settings to EASY or if there are enough coal/wood resources around), and a group of these can take out most of the monsters guarding the mines and resources. Not many defending monsters can do more than 40 points of damage per turn (that's the troll's hit points), and you can decrease that damage/defending-monster- group by using Troll's range attack ability. If/When they do move close enough, only 2 monster groups can attack at the same time anyway. These are the monster groups you can usually defeat without losing a single troll (Dwarves, Peasants, Swordsmen, Pikemen, Archers, Goblins, Ogres, Wolves, Faeries) I can usually take out the first computer opponent within the first two weeks with a group of 6 trolls because the castle isn't built enough to create more than 40 points of damage from the garrison. The highest order monster from the barbarian castle are the Cyclops. They require an initial 20 crystal for the housing, then additional crystal for each Cyclops generated which can be expensive if there isn't a crystal mine around that you can control. Knights - A knight castle/hero is a pretty good combo. Since the monsters generated in a knight castle generally have higher defense points, if you combine this with a knight hero's defense bonuses, a knight castle is hard to defeat. Knight castle lacks flyers so unless you want to just sit there and get pounded on while defending a castle, you better get flyers or the teleport spell. You can also develop a knight castle as fast as a barbarian castle with the exception of the highest order monster (Paladin) which requires an initial investment of 20 crystals. Paladin units however does not require additional crystals to be recruited. Sorceress - Sorceress castles might be the hardest castle to build up because of high amount of resources it requires. To even get to the 3rd level monsters (Druids), you'll need to construct a mage tower which requires 2000 gold alone. The Sorceress castle does produce the best combo of range attackers / flyers / defenders. A full blown sorceress castle has the phoenix to be the first initial attacker because of the speed, and therefore the chance to cast a spell before anyone else. The Phoenix can also do a lot of damage and stop any range strikers on the opposing side. The druid comes next with speed and does the range damage to any potential flyers that might be coming in. The unicorn will do a good deal of damage with the possibility of paralyization and the archer/dwarf round out the good defense/range striking tactics. The highest order monster housing (Phoenix) requires an additional 20 mercury to be built (Druid housing takes up some of that initial mercury you have also), and an additional mercury unit to produce. Wizard - Easier to build up than the Sorceress castle except for the highest order monster (Dragon) which requires 15000 gold and an additional 20 sulfur to build the housing. You can probably produce a gargoyle crypt and a griffin's nest in the first few days and send out the hero with the 3 monster types to destroy most of the weaker guarding monsters. The centaurs can function as a range strike against any thing while the high speed of gargoyle and to some degree, the griffin can stop any range strikers. This combo of 3 can take out: goblins, archers, elven archers, dwarves, orcs, and peasants. Once you construct the dragon tower however, the game is pretty much yours (unless another player has a dragon tower). The computer will only attack a castle guarded with ONE dragon with a strong stack. Spells ### As a general rule of thumb, any direct damage or global damage spells are great with heroes with high Power attributes since the amount of damage is multiplied by a hero's Power. A decent Skill attribute won't hurt either since you can have the hero roam and combat longer without having to run back to the castle to refresh a spell. Once a spell is cast, it is gone. You must return to the castle with the Spell Tower containing that spell to re-learn it. ### In a combat scene, if you go first, you get the chance to cast a spell first. It will be up to you to decide to either cast a good spell on your troop, cast a negative spell on the computer's troop, do direct damage to the computer's troop, do global damage, or to wait. One "goofy" thing about this game is that one spell "overrides" another spell (except when Anti-Magic is cast). For example, if I cast "Curse" on one of the computer's troops, he can cast "Protection" on the same turn and nullify the "Curse" spell. The only exception I believe is the effect of Paralyze stays even if you overrides it with another spell (somebody verify?). So maybe it would be good sometimes to wait for the computer to cast that negative spell on your stack and you can cast a positive spell on your stack to negate and enchant your stack with one spell. ### A player cannot cast spells or use the Ballistas in a castle if all the troops controlled by the player are blinded, or paralyzed. Anti-Magic - A good spell to cast over your "good" units, particularly your missile units since the computer usually targets them first with negative spells. Armageddon (4)- A really good global damage spell when used in conjunction with a dragon stack or Anti-Magic spell. An experienced hero with high Power attribute can really do damage with these combos since his dragon troop or anti-magiked troop(s) won't be affected by this spell. Blind - Similar to paralyze where a troops is immobile for the number of combat turns equal to the opponent's hero's Power. I believe it is weaker than paralyze because on the turn the Blind spell wears out or canceled, the victim can attack that turn. Lightning (2)- A good spell to take out powerful/obnoxious stacks. I love using these on the genies since they are pretty deadly with their special 1/2 stack attack and high attack attributes. Storm - A weaker form of Armageddon spell, but still pretty good and faster to learn than Armageddon. View All - An OK spell. By the time you can afford to construct that 4th layer for your spell tower to get this spell, the game is pretty much done. Useful at the end when you want to locate that last castle/town of the computer to finish him off. View Resource - Could be handy if you know what kinda resource you will need to build a certain type of building. For example, a Warlock will want to look for all the unguarded sulfur resource he can find because sulfur is necessary to construct Swamp and the Dragon Tower.
### Nifty Spell Combos Anti-Magic + Global Damage Combat Spells Haste + Hydra Paralyze + Range Strikers/Castle Pestilence + COP: Black. oops, wrong game :) 3. Cracking The AI The computer AI in the strategic gaming industry is still in its infancy. I've posted articles about how they are mislabeling the computer in games such as Master of Magic and Master of Orion as "AI". You might see some comparisons below to other strategy games as examples. A very very few games out there have an AI that learns from your actions and mistakes and increases its knowledge from experiences much like a human being's brain and learning abilities. I know of one chess game that can do that. Blizzard claimed that the "AI" in Warcraft 2 also has a "Learning AI", but either it has learning disability or it just isn't true because it seems to be dumber than the AI in Warcraft 1. Most of the games out there are based on a rule-based knowledge base AI and can not learn from user's actions. It doesn't mean you can't create a good AI with that parameter. Heroes of Might and Magic is one of the games with a better non-learning AI. Many games compensated the weak AI by giving the computer bonuses at a higher setting. The Master of XXX series from SimTex/MicroProse compensated the "hard" and "impossible" AI settings by giving the computer 25% to 50% bonuses over the human opponent in resources such as gold or $$$ and production power. The bonuses are in effect from the beginning to the end of the game. In HoMM, the computer does get a compensation, but only at the beginning of the game. In some of the scenarios that's marked as "hard", the computer might start off with more resources, or a lot of resources close by, or a castle with some pre-built buildings. Once this is done however, the computer doesn't "really" (see below) get any other bonuses throughout the game. This allows you a chance to catch up and have a shot at defeating the computer because you are not falling behind by +25% to +50% every turn. A. The case where "AI" stands for "Automatic Intelligence" The computer has a better sight range than the human players depends on the AI difficulty settings. On the highest setting, I believe the computer can pretty much see the whole map in the very beginning. This could be very useful in locating the necessary resources, mines, and artifacts. This advantage decreases as the games goes on because you pretty much slowly balancing out this advantage by exploring. This also explains why once you leave your castle unguarded, you might see a computer make a straight line for your castle even if he hasn't explored that area yet. Warlords 2's AI actually sends out scouts when the "hidden map" option is on. B. The case where "AI" stands for "Automatically In" - Free Stacks - The computer's hero has "incredible" luck in getting country side monsters to join his group. This advantage may be OK toward the end of the game, but it can easily tip the balance of power at the beginning of the game. According to NWC, the possibility of a monster group joining your hero's stack depends on the following things: Strength of your stack, type of monsters in your stack, type of hero. More than once I saw a computer stack marching toward me with peasants, archers, and 30 gargoyles at the beginning of the game. Even if I find out which stack is joining the computer and try to get to it first, it doesn't always work. Another time I checked a computer and he had a stack with griffins, centaurs, and peasants, and when he merged with a stack of gargoyle, he got about 34 of them. I then reloaded the saved game and try to get the monster stack myself and only 18 joined me. I repeated this several times and verified it but NWC said that shouldn't happen. The computer also seem to know which monster stack will join his hero too. I've seen the computer walk past 2 or 3 monster stacks, free resources and etc. in a bee-line to another monster stack and poof! It joins his stack of monsters and then turns toward my hero to attack him. From my experience, I found the monsters stacks are more likely to join me if I have the same monster types and a strong stack. C. The case where "AI" stands for "Automatic Instill-energy" Ummm.... the "Instill Energy" phrase is borrowed from Magic: The Gathering :). This might just be my imagination, but have you noticed how the computer unit always get "lucky" and does twice the normal damage, and high moral and get two attacks. In the mean time, you're carrying a four leaf clover and the horse shoe and all the moral medals and your units still attack like a normal troop? AI Faults ### The "Can't catch me" trick. If you are defending a castle and have fliers, even if it's only 5 faeries, keep them around. If the computer is attacking with slow monsters, you can just fly from one corner of the screen to another while your ballista does its damage to the computer monsters. Watch out for the "haste" spell. The computer doesn't use this trick. ### The "Teleport" trick. If you have more than 1 dimension doors, you can pretty much get most of the artifacts without having to deal with the guardian if there's an open space by it. Normally, once you move next to a guarding monster stack, you'll have to battle with them, but with dimension doors, you can teleport right next to them, pick up the artifact, and teleport out. I first learn this trick from watching a computer doing the exact same thing! - The AI will often leave a castle weakly guarded if it has a hero to send out. If a strong computer stack comes your way and you can't defend your castle, you might want to leave the castle and have the computer take over it. It will then proceed to split his stack into 2 weaker ones so you'll have a better chance to defeat the computer or take back the castle. 4. Tips on different creatures Knight Peasant - Not too good at all, even if you have high stats heroes. Slow, low damage, you might want to have some to fill slots to protect your range strikers or from a castle being invaded. Archer - Slow, but they do good damage in a large group. Pikemen - Pretty good and cheap defense, especially when protecting range strikers. Swordsmen - Another good, cheap attacker/defender. Cavalry - Very good attacker and defender for the price. It's fast so they get to do most of the damage first. Paladin - Cheapest Elite creature you can get. They do really good damage and double attacking make them very dangerous. 5. Tips on Campaign 6. Tips on Single Scenarios I generally like to set my difficulties to Easy/Normal, depending on the level, and for computer intelligence, I usually set it at genius. I believe the higher intelligence of a computer, the more area of the map the computer can see. I believe at the genius level, the computer can pretty much see the whole map at the very beginning! This is tolerable, but not a necessary cheat on the computer part. I also like to set the King of the Hill option to true. My logic for this is would you rather fight 3 computers with one castle each (producing weaker/spreadout units) or would you rather have one computer with 3 castles (producing mass/powerful units)? With this option on, it might be a little harder in the beginning, but nothing compares to the end when you're fighting one powerful computer opponent. For beginners, you might want to try EASY/Dumb setting just to get a feel of how the AI works. Badlands - Very easy to win. Just make sure you start off at the upper right area of the map. I tried it at the highest settings for everything and won easily with a Dragon rating. The trick is to get enough money in the beginning to get a Barbarian hero. Have this hero go into the desert at the right side of the map. When you go there, you should be able to pick up a lot of free resource, artifacts, gold, 2 towns, and 3 genie lamps. There's one undefended lamp in the middle/right of the desert, and once you start with the genies, most of the foes will fall in the desert. With the genies from these lamps, you can pretty much claim all the desert. After this happens, the hero is highly experienced enough to conquer the other opponents easily. Jolly Roger - Normal. I believe one of the computer opponent actually starts off with a fully blown Warlock castle so don't be surprised to see dragons marching your way on the first week. The trick is to construct a boat and go to the desert isles at the N, S, E, W, NW, NE, SW, SE corner of the map where each contains an unguarded genie lamp. Be sure to return these FAST to a guarding hero to fight off the dragons. Once you fight off the dragon stack, get the castle QUICK and you pretty much have the game when you get the full blown warlock castle. *** I might add more, but with the release of a map editor and random map generator, it will be hard for me to keep all the different scenarios in this FAQ. 7. Add-ons/News There are no map editors or any kind out there right now (see Section 8. Gripes/Suggestions). I just received new information from a representative (Clay) of New World Computing about a map editor. A random map generator AND a map editor will be available for the Windows `95 version of the Heroes of Might and Magic (see below). For DOS users, an upgrade is currently being developed right now (but not promised) that will include the map editor, but I'm not sure if it will include the random map generator. More information will be provided here as I receive more details. There's a saved game editor floating out there by Gary Blatt, and I believe it can be located at the following web site: http://rampages.onramp.net/~gbconslt. There's also a universal saved game editor by Overkill/Mortuai that will edit scored, creature types in an army, resource, gold, spells, artifacts. It can be located at hhtp://www.ici.net/customers/overkill/overkill.h tm under the "UGE Page" option at the home page. *** Windows 95 Version and Heroes of Might and Magic II! *** Here's posting I grabbed from George Ruof of New World Computing about the Windows `95 version and HoMM 2: "Heroes for Win95 will basically be the same game but it will be a native 32 bit Windows 95 app using DirectDraw. The networking and modem code will be unchanged to maintain compatibility between the DOS and Win95." Additional information: "The Win95 version should be out around the middle of February. It includes more scenarios, a scenario editor/random generator, CD-Audio soundtrack (yeah!!!), and the original King's Bounty game"!!! "We are planning for Heroes 2 which we would like to ship for next Christmas. The details are still in the early planning stages, but it will be based on the existing Heroes engine. I would like to support both IPX & TCP/IP for networking, but we're still not sure if we will be able to. Right now the DirectPlay component of Microsoft's game SDK seems fairly incomplete, but hopefully by next year it will be updated and prove to be a good networking solution. If not, we'll see what happens. :) I will definitely argue for Internet play every day (or so) until it ships." 8. Gripes/Suggestions. Gripes The biggest gripe many people have is the 400+ megs of digitized music/sound on the CD that plays continuously (when you have the music turned on). So the CD-ROM drive is constantly reading/playing these digitized files from the drive. EVERYBODY I know eventually ended up turning the music off, and some people I know even turn the sound off. I contacted New World Computing and they said it's the only way to can "copy protect" the CD. If you spend 3-4 hours on a scenario, that means the CD-ROM drive is constantly spinning/reading for the 3-4 hours. This is not as simple as playing a music CD because the computer actually has to play these wave files and take up valuable system resource. So most of us consumers ended up suffering with the lack of music which other new games are taking advantage of the small midi files and abundance of wave table sound cards out there to provide a great gaming atmosphere. I know for a fact that there's a pirated copy out there that doesn't require the CD-ROM and doesn't have the 400 me baggage so their copy-protection attempts are kinda futile. CD-ROMs can also be replicated for less than $7 now. They should at most check to see if the correct CD-ROM is in the drive (a la Warcraft 2) for copy protection. The second gripe is the lack of map/scenario editor. New World has one in-house that they said we wouldn't want the way they have it now, but I think anything is better than nothing. At least release the specs so somebody can work on it. The last I heard they are working on a map editor to be bundled with the Windows 95 version. I hope we won't have to pay for the editor alone. (see Section #6 for great news on this topic) This great game however is relatively bug free. Some people have modem problems with it but that's few. Most of the people were able to run it under Windows `95. One minor bug is when your hero is in a boat, don't use the Town Gate spell or else you will end up with a boat in front of a castle with the hero stuck in it. One person on the net said it kept crashing but the game works fine now after he scandisk or re- formatted his hd partition. Suggestions Suggestions for patch/upgrade/HoMM 2: * Simultaneous damage. When 2 creatures come face to face, they should do simultaneous damages to eachother. It's hard to imagine a pack of Griffin would just sit there and wait for a pack of wolves to maw it until it's their turn. * Hero bonuses should apply against spells. Right now, a +50 defense troll can still be killed by a 50-point lightning. * Add toggle on/off for the ability of a monster stack to join your hero group. * Increase in stats for native monsters depending on the type of terrain. (ie, phoenix should not fight too well in the snow/tundra) * Fatigue-Damage ratio for monsters. How many times can those dwarves swing those axes at full strength/damage? * Health-Damage ratio for monsters. Wow, that unicorn can still do full damage even if it only has 1 life point left. I'm not sure how to integrate this since the monsters are grouped into one type, not individuals. * Terrain Bonuses - Wow, that goblin has no problem walking on that molten lava! And the fire-breathing dragon is having no problem with the tundra! ################################################ ######## This FAQ may be distributed freely on the Internet. Copies can be made freely, as long as it is distributed at no charge and no further modification, and the disclaimers and the copyright notice are included. Commercial On- line services may write for permission to carry this FAQ on their service, and will be held responsible if this FAQ is located on the service in any form without written permission. The fee for the following services are as follows: America On-Line - $100/year. CompuServe - $75/year. Genie - $50/year. MSN - $5000/year. (C)1996 Blue Orchid Technologies George Lin 748 E. Pumping Station Rd. Quakertown, PA 18951