Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Some Like It Hot Seat
Posted by Zach Mann
Over Thanksgiving break, Alex and I played a casual ode-to-olden-tymes match of Heroes of Might & Magic III. It was a miniaturized version of the kinds of Heroes games we used to play in high school or over summer breaks. Alex chose the smallest map size and only three players, but after we half-drunkenly chased away the evil, CPU-controlled Orange player, it was enough to remind me how much I liked playing turn-based video games.
The term "Hot Seat" is a negative term in the land of multi-player computer games, where "Real-Time" is considered a more advanced style of game design. Even these newfangled European board games, like Settlers and Race for the Galaxy, try their best to spice up the turn-based process with sub-turns and simultaneous actions. "Hot Seat" computer games are to modern video games as Monopoly is to whatever board game Jason most recently purchased.
Heroes of Might & Magic is like Monopoly in many ways. The X-Large map games with multiple CPU players are rarely played to the very end, and even though it becomes clear which Hero isn't going to last, it takes turns and turns and turns before inevitability catches up to that player. And yet, for some reason, I find that game very fun. When it comes to boardgames, I'll probably choose modern to Monopoly every time, but when it comes to computer games, I still enjoy the Hot Seat.
Of course, the Monopolyest of Hot Seat video games isn't Heroes. No, that award goes to the one-and-only Aerobiz Supersonic (Air Management II), because to this day, despite the number of times we've played this game on emulator, I have never finished a game.
Sigh... I miss Aerobiz Supersonic. (Though not this much)