In the German gaming magazine GameStar (issue 04/2009) Master of Orion 3 was named as one of the "10 Most Terrible Sequels". The best parts of Master of Orion II are the logical game mechanics and the easy to learn menu structure. All that got improved for the worst by complicating everything and focusing on macro management. Also the exciting turn-based combat got replaced by ugly real-time battles.
Master of Orion 3 was named #1 Worst Game of the Year in the “Best of 2003” Awards in Computer Games Magazine (March 2004 issue).
The Australian magazine PC Powerplay claimed to be the first to get an exclusive "demo"of Master of Orion III when in reality what it got given was a pre-alpha release of the game from the publishing house, Infogrames. Here is the press release Quicksilver Software released after the incident:
As many of you know, the Australian magazine PC PowerPlay has recently released what they thought was a demo of Master of Orion III. Obviously this has caused a big stir around the Quicksilver offices since we've never made a MOOIII demo. Apparently what they got their hands on was a pre-alpha version of MOOIII that was delivered as one of our normal milestone deliveries to Infogrames and was never meant for public consumption. I spoke to our producer at Infogrames this morning and what I've been told is that one of the Infogrames employees at the Australian office gave the CD out without authority and that led to its release. At this point Infogrames is dealing the problem but obviously there's only a certain amount that can be done after the fact.
So, for those that have seen the version, please realize that what you have is NOT an official demo. It's a pre-alpha build that is buggy, incomplete and needs a lot of tuning/adjustment of screens. Moreover, while we'll be leaving any screenshots up on the forums that have been posted we will be removing any links to actual copies of the version since we don't feel it's representative of the game. Thanks for everyone's support.
It is to be hoped that gamers who get their hands on the alpha won't assume it's representative of the final game.