The Erathian Liberation Party, a group of fans of the Might and Magic series, has released a new patch for Might & Magic IX, bringing New World Computing's...
After years of waiting the game was eagerly expected by the fans worldwide. This game introduces you to a whole new world, quite reminding the player of Scandinavia during the time of the Vikings. Once again, you will form a party of four members that are trying to save the world. The six Clans are being threatened by an army approaching their lands, and nothing seems to stop them. Your task would be to unite these Clans and build an army of your own, to stop the invaders. Through several twists, a treachery and your own death, however, you will find that you have become the pawns in a game played by the Gods; it will be up to you to defeat the very God who caused the whole mess.
The game is played in a first person view, with combat either in real time or turn-based mode. There are ten main locations in the game, with several dozen dungeons and some few special locations, including the Afterworld. In addition to your four party characters, you will be able to hire three more NPCs (this stands for "non-playing characters", but they are in fact playable) that you will have a limited control over. These will help you to survive a world filled with any kind of a nasty monster you can imagine (and very few that you can't).
The game is based on a very strong character creation engine. While there are many essential quests to fulfill so you would have a progress in the storyline, there are many others that you will have to accomplish in order to promote your characters to new, far more advanced classes. Then, these more sophisticated classes of your heroes could learn significantly more advanced skills and spells. These gives the player a lot of opportunities to replay the game with other characters and explore other possibilities, and have been the most unique aspect of the Might and Magic games for quite a time now. It still does remain as one of the strong points of this game.
The dungeon design of Might and Magic IX is simply outstanding. Rarely have people seen such well-made dungeons, full with clever traps and puzzles you will have to solve to continue your journey. From the common spikes falling on top of you, to the more surprising floor traps, fake walls behind which often does stand a monster in ambush, to falling axes and saws that are especially designed to chop your head off - the traps are ranging in styles and looks. They are placed so well that you will need all your concentration, attention and skill to survive.
Puzzles range from quite a simple pushing of a special sequence of buttons, to adjusting mirrors in order to direct a ray of light to the appropriate place, trying to ignore the powerful deception that you will encounter. Quite many of the dungeons in the game are very big - it might as well take you many hours to pass through them from one place to another, only to be attacked by furious monsters, or hurt by traps again and again.
Besides the great design of the tough dungeons & character building, there are other improvements - compared to the previous games in the series.
Firstly, the magic system was completely made over, making it incredibly unique. Your skills now will determine the number and efficiency of spells that you will be able to learn, as every spell has a requirement of at least two magical skills, instead of one. Sometimes, for most powerful spells found in only one school of magic, the entire three magic skills are mandatory. Otherwise, you will just not be able to learn the spell. This places a large effect on the game the skills become much more important than they were before in the previous series.
Second, the aspect of gold (the currency in this series) that you will have in the game was greatly improved. All through the game, you will experience a constant lack of funds. This seems far more realistic, of course, than when you are ending the game with a well some million gold pieces in your purse. Now you will have but a few copper coins in your possession at the end.
Third, the soundtrack is on the same level with the previous Might and Magic games, already famous for some of the best music compositions found in video games.
Lastly, the game features very, very impressive cities with some natural looking scenery of large fortress-like medieval castles and bastions.
Unlike other games in the series, Might and Magic 9 is based on the Lithtech engine, instead of using high resolution 2d graphics they are using 3d objects which are unfortunately quite low resolution, compared to other games released at this time, M&M 9 was unimpressive looking.. but didn't stop anyone from enjoying the adventure.
Unfortunately the game was released with lots of bugs and glitches.
3DO hastily released one patch to fix some of these problems unfortunately shortly after the patches release 3DO declared bankruptcy making this their last game. Thankfully a group of fans released a unofficial patch a year later to address over 80 bugs and glitches. You can download if right here at moddb.
Might & Magic® IX wasn't finished when it went gold a month before its release in March of 2002. The release date -- the last business day of 3DO's fiscal year -- could not be pushed back any further. Work on the game continued and a patch to version 1.2 was available when the game hit the shelves.
Still, lead designer Tim Lang says that the game needed about two more months of work -- and that would have been another two months of 12+ hour days by some of the most experienced RPG designers in the industry. In the end, the over-riding consideration was that 3DO could not afford to put any more resources into the game. Two thirds of the development team members were invited to resign or accept re-assignment to 3DO's home office. There would be no more work on further MM9 patches -- nor on a proposed MM10. However, while it's true that the dev team didn't have time to finish the game as they wanted to, they left the game open for future development as much as possible. This means that knowledgeable fans can fix many of the deficiencies of the game -- from annoying glitches to game-killing bugs. The most widely known of these efforts is kingkongcobra's 'Unofficial Patch' which corrected several errors in the NPC dialog system. The folks at MM-Worlds had a much larger task addressing extensive errors that crept in when the dialog was translated into German.
These and other efforts have spared countless fans from hours of frustration and helped them enjoy MM9. TELP released this patch a year after the games release. The 1.3 patch is designed for compatibility and is intended for people who are playing version 1.2 and want to prevent many potential bugs. It's primarily intended for people who want to play (or re-play!) MM9 more in keeping with the game the designers wanted to make. You can download it at the TELP website or here at moddb.
Acknowledgements and Appreciation
Although most of the work on this patch was done by one person, there were many others who helped out with effort, information and insights. They are: New World Computing's MM9 Development Team. Although our primary contact has been though Tim Lang, Walter Johnson and Karl Drown, if they couldn't answer a question for us they would check with other team members. Everyone on the devlopment team wishes they'd been given the time to finish the game properly. This patch is dedicated to them. Klaravoyia Klar has been incredibly helpful in so many ways. For her information on game bugs, for testing this patch and providing applicable savegames, for her consistantly sound insights into all aspects of this and other M&M RPGs, for testing this patch's changes, and for her gracious presence on the M&M forums we are humbly in her debt. Visit her MM9 website at Keytech.com kingkongcobra (aka kkc) This game would have been even more unplayable if not for both the early release of his collection of dialog fixes known as 'the unofficial patch' and his helpful advice in various MM9 forums. Thank you. Rustavius A thoughtful presence on our MM9 message board even before the game was released, Rustavius recognized that this game would have been quite good if the developers had been given more time. He has investigated and devised corrections to some complex relationships in the game mechanics and done so in spite of real-life difficulties. Thank you, my friend. MM-World The version of the game that was 'localized' for the German market was horribly translated. Our friends at MM-World have worked hard to make their version of MM9 playable, and TELP salutes them for their remarkable efforts. Their website can be found at Mm-world.gamesurf.tiscali.de Ice3 A strong advocate of MM9 and the entire M&M series, Ice3 has offered his help in adapting this patch to the game's French version. With this kind of support worldwide, Might & Magic will never die. Visiter son site Internet sur MM9: Portailsmm.com TELP and the regulars at our MM9 Tavern Our Tavern community is an example for everyone of what this world needs to be -- tolerant, respectful, helpful and joyous. You are the reason why making this patch was worth the effort. Hope to see you there. TELP's 1.3 patch for MM9 1.2 is free. This patch is being distributed as freeware. It may be freely used, copied and distributed as long as it is not sold and all original files are included. After installation, look for 'TELP13 License.txt' in the folder that contains 'mm9.exe', your main MM9 executable. The actual patching program was produced using Hanmen® PatchWise Free version 3. It is a very competent and easy-to-use patching utility and is, quite amazingly, free even for commercial use. We recommend it highly. Their website is Patchwise.com. Although we are not encouraging you to do so, some people have expressed a desire to make monetary contributions to aid TELP's work in support of Might and Magic fans worldwide.
User's Guide to TELP's 1.3 Patch for MM9
Please Note This guide will refer to your 'MM9 folder'. This is the location of the file 'mm9.exe', the game's executable file. Its default location is 'C:Program Files3DOMight and Magic IX', but you might have chosen a different location upon installation. All sub-folders mentioned are contained within your MM9 folder. Please also note that this information is included in our distribution ZIP file and will (upon installation) be placed in your MM9 folder as 'TELP13 User Guide.txt' for later reference. Requirements:
You must be running 1) the English language version of 3DO's Might & Magic® IX, and 2) it must be patched to version 1.2.
Preparation If you have not already installed the official 1.2 patch for MM9, you can download it from 3DO's Might & Magic IX Update page or right here at moddb.
It is also being hosted by TELP in our FTP section (click here, by Klaravoyia on her MM9 Patch page and by MM-World in their Download section. If you have already installed kingkongcobra's 'Unofficial Patch' or MM-World's 'Unofficial English Patch v.2.0' you will need to restore your original version 1.2 resource files. If you saved these files as suggested then you can simply re-copy them to the 'data' sub-folder of your MM9 folder.
If you did not save these files, you will need to re-install MM9 from your original CDs and re-run the official 1.2 patch. Doing this should not affect the contents of your 'Save' or 'Minisaves' sub-folders, but you might want to make a backup copy of those if you want to be especially cautious.
The patch can be installed in two ways. You can always extract TELP13.exe from our distribution ZIP file and run it, but since most ZIP utility programs let you run programs directly from their shell you can probably just open the ZIP file and run it from there. The location of the setup file doesn't matter as long as it has enough disk space to run. The setup program will ask you for the location of your MM9 folder. It will offer to make backup copies of the files to be updated before proceeding. You will want these original files to make it easy to restore your game to version 1.2. You might need to do this to run future TELP updates for MM9. The backed up files will require 276M of storage space. If you don't have enough free space on the drive that holds your MM9 installation, you should backup these files manually to another drive. The updated files are: ART.REZ DATA.REZ LOCALART.REZ RUDE.REZ SRIPTS.REZ WORLD.REZ ... If you do not backup these files, you will still be able to re-install the game from your original CDs. Next, this program will update your files, which might take about two minutes on slower systems. A report of the updater's success will be saved as 'PatchWise.log' in your MM9 folder. Finally, you will be given a chance to read our ReadMe file (choose 'About The Patch' from the menu at the left) if you haven't done so already.