Game Over Online ~ Might & Magic VIII: Day of the Destroyer

GameOver Game Reviews - Might & Magic VIII: Day of the Destroyer (c) 3DO, Reviewed by - Jimmy Clydesdale

Game & Publisher Might & Magic VIII: Day of the Destroyer (c) 3DO
System Requirements Pentium 166, 32MB Ram, 4x CD-ROM
Overall Rating 40%
Date Published Monday, April 10th, 2000 at 03:28 PM

Divider Left By: Jimmy Clydesdale Divider Right

The Might & Magic series was once a rich and engulfing RPG experience. Today, it's about as rich and deep as troll poop.

The Might & Magic series, as of late, makes the Tomb Raider series seem innovative.

Personally, I liked Might & Magic VIII the first time I played it, when it was called Might & Magic VI.

Oddly enough, we've seen three Might & Magic titles in the last three years. Why so long between each game? I don't know about you, but garbage pickup is once a week where I live.

I've got a million of them folks and I'll be playing Vegas all week!

Seriously though, I'm not going to waste many brain cells writing a lengthy review about Might & Magic VIII: Day of the Destroyer simply because it's just not worth the time. Like an aging wizard, the Might & Magic franchise seems to have lost its vision. Like a guest on the Oprah Winfrey show, the Might & Magic franchise is in need of a makeover. And like the Tennessee Titans after their Super Bowl loss, I got nothin'!

The story goes a little something like this: The world of Enroth has fallen out of balance with the rest of the cosmos and as a result, the gateways to the elemental planes have been opened, freeing the forces of Earth, Air, Fire and Water. The age of peace appears to be coming to an end and the age of destruction or death is upon us. It is up to you to form a party of heroes that will unite the human and monster races of the world in time to launch a joint effort to save Enroth from planetary extinction.

What we've got here is your basic 'the end of the world is coming' plot with a twist. The twist is that there doesn't appear to be any twists. It's a linear story that goes nowhere fast and by the time you reach the midway point of the game, you realize the cause just doesn't seem worth fighting for anymore. Day of the Destroyer is like any of the previous Might & Magic titles, or any RPG for that matter; you fight creatures; earn experience; upgrade your character and their abilities; purchase new equipment, spells and skills; and complete a series of side quests as you move forward in your attempt to thwart the almighty power that threatens the player's existence.

Everything in Day of the Destroyer seems borrowed or re-used from previous Might & Magic titles. The engine remains the same, so the graphics are extremely outdated. The sound effects are nothing new and the overall presentation remains relatively the same (not that the interface was ever bad to begin with). The gameplay also remains the same. Hack 'n' slash your enemies, break and enter into NPC houses in order to find extra equipment, and 'interact' with NPCs so you can go on quests. Of course, you can never truly interact with NPCs. Like a bad actor in a stage play, they seem to follow the script to a tee and rarely have anything interesting to say other than 'Bring me blickity blop, and you'll be well rewarded'. Gee Mr., thanks for the great conversation, I feel better just having talked to you.

Is there anything new in Day of the Destroyer? Yes. I'm happy to say that you start the game by selecting your character's class. There is seven classes in total: Troll, Minotaur, Vampire, Dark Elf, Knight, Necromancer and Cleric. There's also an eighth class, Dragons, but you can't begin the game by choosing such a class. You'll have to wait till you come across one in your adventures who is willing to join your party in their mighty quest. So, at least there's one good thing to build on in (gulp!) future Might & Magic titles. The only other big difference between Day of the Destroyer and previous Might & Magic titles is that there are many creatures beyond the cities that won't attack you. As I said before, it's the age of peace so many of the creatures live in harmony with humans. It's only the creatures that have been brought to the planet via the portals that are evil and deadly. If you wish to kill such non-violent creatures, you can certainly do so, but it's no longer required.

Unlike previous Might and Magic titles, there are no more safe zones apart from the towns where you can run and hide. Also, shooting creatures at long range will now bring a retaliatory action. If you played Might & Magic VII, you'll remember that you could shoot creatures at long range without worrying about them seeing and attacking you. It's good to know they've knocked out these two annoying bugs.

The bottom line: same old, same old. Might & Magic VIII: Day of the Destroyer is the worst in the series to date. The engine is painfully old, the story is as original as a disaster movie and worse of all, this game is the opposite of addictive. I'm extremely disappointed with the Might & Magic series of late, having been a fan of the earlier titles, so I wish New World Computing well in their future efforts. There are two more Might & Magic titles slated for future release and with the LithTech engine in their hands, hopefully the series will catch a second wind.

[ 08/20 ] Graphics
[ 08/15 ] Sound
[ 13/30 ] Gameplay
[ 06/20 ] Fun Factor
[ 01/05 ] Storyline
[ 04/10 ] Overall Impression


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