Just registered with the forum to comment on this. I've followed Spiderweb since Exile 3 came out, was blown away by that game, but somehow this release slipped past me. I have to say one of the things that really got me was when I realized the cities were degrading around me as time passed. I didn't notice it occurring really until some time into the game, I had trouble with the golem area so I steered clear of it for some time just having fun exploring things and making quick trips through that country. I still remember the first time I ducked into the Inn of Blades to rest from some difficult encounters only to find it completely overrun with golems. So cool.
First thing when I saw A3 pop up on GOG was look for this post and, very glad to hear that mechanic was continued. I don't think of it as losing content, but really introducing a lot of new content as things change when time passes.
One way I enjoyed playing Exile was to let a ton of time pass right at the start so the cities are really damaged when you first encounter them. Another favorite was to create a party of 6 clerics and go as quickly as possible to joining the Anama (spelling?) It was possible to get some seriously powerful spell bombs very early in the game, although probably not the most interesting way to play from a variety perspective. I also loved that you could attack the cities yourselves, joining the Anama and then brutally wiping them out was always fun (although the cities would eventually reset themselves if you left for a while and the NPCs would come back to life).
I still have Exile 3 running on my windows 10 PC.. I don't think it's possible to easily do this, the trick is to get a legit copy of Windows 98 and run it in a VMware virtual PC. Not an easy solution.
Cheers to Spiderweb, so excited to play this game!