When I was younger, RPGs were much more prevalent. A lot of companies built their core on classic roleplaying games. Series of games like Ultima, Wizardry and the Might and Magic all carved out what the future of roleplaying games would be like, each adding something unique and special to the genre. By the time they stopped, new, unique games had taken their places in the highlights, but to many players, the classics never die.
Might & Magic X: Legacy is a modern-day throwback to the classic games of yore. Being published by Ubisoft, the game does not take place after Might & Magic IX, but rather, it takes places after the events of the modern strategy-adaptations’ latest release, Might & Magic Heroes VI, released in 2011. It’s due to release in Australia on January 23, 2014.
You take a party of four characters, selected in the beginning, each designed to do their own thing. There’s a variety of flavour; Orc Barbarians hit things hard, while Elf Rangers utilise a combination of magic to ensnare enemies while filling them full of arrows. Each race – there are four – has three classes available; a “Might”, a “Magic” and a “hybrid” class.
I picked the Adventurer difficulty – the recommended level of play for anyone who isn’t familiar with the series – and decided to stick with the default party that was given to me. I made a pact to not stop playing until I had died completely. In my party, I had someone from every race: Leif, a Dwarf Defender who likes to hit things with his axe; Rongo, an Orc Barbarian who likes to hit things with his club; Erlin, an Elf Ranger who likes to hit things with her bow and Ligeia, a Human Freemage who likes to hit things with her spells.
As it turns out, my band of merry adventurers were known as Raiders. It sounded ominous, as soon as I heard it, but as it turns out it just means I’m an adventurer with a purpose and a set of morals. I was granted a look at the first chapter, of a maximum four chapters being developed.
I start in a town, known as “Sorpigal-by-the-Sea”. It’s a quiet town that adventurers retire to when they’re tired of the noisy life of slaying monsters. As my merry band stepped off the dock, I’m greeted by a guy named Dunstan, who tells me he himself is a former raider – what a surprise! He also tells me Karthal, the city that I am aiming to journey to, is actually closed by rebels. Seeing as I have nothing else to do, Dunstan decided to take me around town and eventually to Commander Maximus of the town guard to find some adventuring work.
The town is relatively small, but there’s anything you could want in it – places to buy weapons, to receive healing, to drink and rest, to train in combat, to buy magical scrolls, to buy potions and trinkets… it’s seemingly a lively little place and the layout is a lot of fun. My group head over to Commander Maximus, and he laughs at my request for work.
I needed to go prove myself to Maximus, before he will give me work, I am told. The developers have a great sense of humour, and so I’m not being sent to go “kill some rats in a cellar”, but instead I need to solve something much more ominous – as I was walking around town, there were whispers of townsfolk disappearing at night. Maximus informs me that I’m to go with him down the town well and straight into the lair of giant, deadly, poisonous spiders, as that’s a much better way to prove myself.
Fighting my way through what appeared to be a cavern underneath the town – which, from my previous exploration around, I know was used for smuggling cargo – and through hordes of spiders, I end up facing the Spider Queen. A giant-giant spider who is intelligent enough to be able to communicate in some ghastly fashion, slaughtering her proves me to Commander Maximus. I levelled up too!
I figured that boosting my party at what they’re good at was the way to go in my inexperience; Leif received a bit more damage and health, Rongo received a lot more damage, Erlin was boosted in her dexterity so she could deal more damage with her bow and Ligeia increased her magical aptitude. I raised their skill – of which they were Novices in – in their respective preferred damaging skills. I just wanted to be able to kill things faster.
I trudged back to the garrison, and Maximus was pleased with my efforts and told me had another job for me. There was a lighthouse, outside of town, that a bunch of ‘crazy Naga’ had taken over. He wanted me to deal with them, and to “restore the light”, if I can.
Leaving town, I entered what takes place as the world map. It’s really just more of what I’ve experienced – a giant field with enemies, which I can walk through, square by square, to get to my goal, the lighthouse. Using my map, I eventually find myself waylaid by said Naga. Magical snake-fish-people with samurai swords wasn’t my idea of a good time, apparently, and I died nearly instantly. Whether I needed to be a higher level, or needed better equipment, I couldn’t say, but samurai snake-fish are nothing to laugh at when they slaughter you in a mere matter of turns.
Might & Magic X: Legacy is worth checking out soon, if you’re looking for a nostalgia trip from your youth. The world’s environment, littered full of lore, makes the game a much more old-school and enjoy able journey than most other modern-RPGs will offer you. It’s a world where you can create a party, utilise your own strategies to explore dungeons and defeat puzzles, that will let you discover a whole new part of Ashan. It’s an RPG to look forward to in 2014.