The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same
Oh, you want a final verdict? Alright, here's one: MMXL is actually a Might & Magic game. Limbic and Ubisoft made no presumptions here. They asked the fans what they wanted, and then they used the hallowed titles of the series as a blueprint. After a decade of wandering in the wilderness of sordid action games masquerading as roleplaying games, of suffering through people citing Oblivion as "one of the old-school greats", Might & Magic is back as something other than a strategy game. And it's genuine. Whatever its flaws, no matter how many bugs get stomped between now and release, MMXL will sink or swim based on the answer to one terrible question: do enough people still want to play this genre?
I fear the answer to that question, even as I hope it's a resounding 'YES!'.
Broseph: I can already smell the burning of torches and hear the sharpening of pitchforks over our overly positive assessment of this game. In all seriousness, MMXL has everything it needs to be the next great title in the series. A few design decisions grind my gears, there are a lot of bugs yet to be fixed, and the game suffers from a slowness which plagues a lot of turn-based RPGs. In spite of these flaws, MMXL could end up being the best game in the series yet(!). I can only hope that the late game content ends up being as entertaining and well-designed as what's been presented so far in Acts I and II.
Zeriel: Whoa there, cowboy! I don't think MMXL quite manages to rival Xeen, several decades of technological advantages notwithstanding. We shouldn't expect it to, anyway. This is an entirely different team. That it'll come close to matching Xeen would be enough of a miracle for me.