Pages

The lost Dreamcast port of Heroes of Might and Magic III has been released!

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.

Links are as follows:
  • GDI dump (for use with GD-EMU / DreamShell etc.): download here
  • CDI version (for burning to a CD-R using DiscJuggler): download here
The Dreamcast Junkyard is but a messenger in this tale, and takes no kudos for this release. That all goes to FatalistDC, Jan and those who donated to the fundraiser on GoFundMe. Awesome work indeed, folks!
If I manage to get the game working, rest assured you'll get a post-mortem review very soon! Have you downloaded the game and played it? Have you got it to run in an emulator or on Dreamcast hardware? If so, what are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter.

4 comments:

  1. Note that if you run into a problem where you controller freezes at the main menu, it's a problem with the game reading your DC's flash memory. You'll need to run the Flash Memory Eraser (from https://dreamcast.wiki/Flash_Memory_Eraser ) to wipe all your console's settings in order to get it to run. This'll delete your PSO information so keep that in mind.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You could try using Flycast, which has Mac OSX builds avaliable here:
    https://flyinghead.github.io/flycast-builds/

    Note that performance may take a hit though, as it seems to be an Windows CE game (flyinghead, the developer, was trying it today)

    ReplyDelete
  3. DEmul 0.7 works with it pretty much out of the box using the GDI file download.

    Just get Demul, the dc.zip bios pack and choose the CDI on the config - gdrom menu. Then run - dreamcast and voilá. Be sure to setup the controller buttons too...

    It's a bit slow, and controls aren't the best, but I've sucessfully finished a battle against a pack of familiars :)

    Thanks for the share.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I donated to the fundraiser so really glad it made it's target and looking forward to playing this.

    ReplyDelete