Fantasy - the stuff dreams are made of. Another computer swords and sorcery role-playing game hits the Amiga scene. The world of CRON (yes. CRON) is now all of 900 years old. For the first few centuries, elemental beings of pure force warred over it. The earth elemental managed to subvert the fire, air and water elementals. 200 years before the game starts, human spell-casters -under the supreme command of king Kalohn, Number One mage -managed to split the elementals up and herd them into their own separate reservations.
Prior to the start of the game, the second greatest magic user in history, Corak, has been behaving peculiarly. He holds mystic summonings and travels magically. Now, he warns of an evil escaped criminal from the past who is loose again to hatch plots and gain domination over all. Will you take up the cause and defeat this adversary? All of this background information is contained in a few pages of well-written, imaginative scene-setting.
The game itself is more familiar in outline. You control a party of adventurers, individuals who are generated as novices. They can progress in their chosen areas of skill: chivalric Knight, dextrous Robber, saintly Paladin, holy Cleric, stealthy Ninja, tough Barbarian, sureshot Archer or potent Sorceror.
Only six characters may be used at one time. These can be chopped and changed from a roster of 26. To take pressure off the merry band, other people can be hired. Such hirelings must be paid off each day, or else they disappear back to the smoky inn where they last stayed.
A simple 3D window displays the direction in which your characters face. They move forwards, backwards and turn to each side. Hundreds of different creatures exist. Some of them can aid you: a blacksmith from whom you buy equipment, a priest who heals characters. Other creatures tend to be unfriendly, hacking your party up unless you can beat them to the draw.
CRON is big. Starting at the town of Middlegate, you can explore the kingdom and the four elemental zones. The latter areas are accessible when you can gain protection from certain spells. Forests and mountain ranges block your way, but these can be braved if some members of your party are talented in relevant ways. Time travel is possible, but it will be a while before new characters achieve this.
The spell system is a little clumsy, the combat one-sided (terminal to your enjoyment) until you can build up the party's expertise. It's an enjoyable caper that people who appreciate the likes of the Bards Tale series will get into.
GRAPHICS AND SOUND
No graphics are used to convey what your characters are like. Everything to do with them is text. The creatures of CRON are animated with a few frames, and the background landscapes are pleasing to the eye. Sound exploitation is almost nonexistent. There are a few spot effects to be heard, but they are not exactly striking.
New characters are woefully weak. Six experienced characters are available whenever you want, and combat is usually fatal if you don't use them for your first forays. Later on you can play with more confidence. In terms of depth, atmosphere and size, Might & Magic 2 is a compelling game that needs effort to get started. Be warned, fantasy fans!
The game lacks a lot in the way of appeal. The graphics look good, but the different options are confusing at first. The manual is written with this in mind, and manages to guide you gradually. Once sussed, no worries: but the initial frustration may prove too much for many people. Such fast-reaction game-players will see it as too tough and dull: hardened adventurers will rise to the challenge.
The second episode of the Might and Magic series. One of the first games of the New World Computing. This game has quite simple graphics and sound, but seems to be a good adventure, rpg, dungeon game for those who likes that style.
How to run this game on modern Windows PC?
People who downloaded Might & Magic 2 have also downloaded:
Might and Magic: Book One, Might and Magic 2: Gates to Another World, Might and Magic III: Isles of Terra, Might and Magic: Swords of Xeen, Might and Magic 6: The Mandate of Heaven, Might and Magic: Darkside of Xeen, Might and Magic 9, Might and Magic: Clouds of Xeen
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