Heroes Chronicles is a series of turn-based strategy video games developed by Jon Van Caneghem through New World Computing and published by the 3DO Company. The series was intended to introduce a new audience, such as casual gamers, to the Heroes of Might and Magic series. As part of that strategy, each installment of Chronicles was released as a low-cost episode containing a relatively short single-player campaign, and the difficulty level of each game was kept low.
All Chronicles games are based on a limited version of the Heroes of Might and Magic III game engine. The ability to play scenario maps and multiplayer games is not included in any Chronicles title.
The series consists of five retail episodes, supplemented by two downloadable episodes. The first two titles, Warlords of the Wasteland and Conquest of the Underworld, were released on September 27, 2000. The next two installments, Clash of the Dragons and Masters of the Elements, were released shortly thereafter on November 15, 2000. In the meantime, 3DO offered The World Tree as a free download, which would install on any system with at least two retail episodes. Similarly, Fiery Moon would install on any system with at least three retail episodes. Lastly, The Sword of Frost and Revolt of the Beastmasters were released together under the name The Final Chapters on June 1, 2001.
All eight games have been released through Good Old Games in June 2011.
In Masters of the Elements, a ten thousand year truce between the Elemental Lords of Air, Earth, Water, and Fire comes to an end. The Ancestors send Tarnum to stop this feud before it destroys the material world. The only way to access the elemental planes is to take control of the last remaining Elemental Conflux in Enroth. Using the forces of Gavin Magnus, the Immortal Grand Vizier of Bracada, Tarnum conquers the last Conflux and discovers the location of the Gateway to the Clouds.
Upon reaching the Plane of Air, Tarnum discovers that Shalwend, Lord of Air, has already departed his realm. When Shalwend destroys the Gateway to the Clouds behind Tarnum, Tarnum is forced to find another way to return to his world. He must become a master of all four elements before returning to Antagarich. He next travels to the Plane of Water where he learns that Acwalander, the Water Lord, has left his realm as well.
In the Plane of Earth, Tarnum is shocked to find that Reamus (a wizard who traveled to the plane 200 years ago) is still alive. Even stranger, only 16 years have passed on the Plane of Earth in that time. As Gralkor, the Earth Lord, has also left his plane, Tarnum and his men realize that the Elemental Lords are using the time variations between the material world and the planes in order to gain a foothold in the material world before Tarnum can return.
While in the Plane of Fire, Reamus and Barsolar (King Magnus's cousin and advisor to Tarnum) learn of the Plane of Magic. Magic binds the elements together, so they know it will give them the advantage they will need against the Elemental Lords. After receiving the aid of the magic elementals and returning to the Plane of Fire to free the Phoenixes enslaved by Pyrannaste, Lord of Fire, Tarnum leads his army back to the material world.
Thirty years have passed in the world since Tarnum had left. King Magnus brings an army to support Tarnum. While they are in camp, Magnus and Tarnum exchange stories. Tarnum learns that one of his Behemoths killed Magnus centuries ago in the battle for Castle Steelhorn, and that Magnus somehow awoke to find himself immortal and later became King of Bracada. However, Tarnum finds Magnus to be arrogant and self-righteous, refusing to consort with the man. Once the Elemental Lords are defeated, Tarnum sends his elemental troops back to their planes. He coldly lets Gavin Magnus know that the elementals will never return to Antagarich (even though they later do so in Armageddon's Blade) then asks the Magic Elementals to destroy all Confluxes and all records of the elemental planes before returning to his life as a Barbarian.