There are five primary paths to victory in Fallen Enchantress. They are Armies, Infrastructure, Champions, Magic and Diplomacy. A player has to decide how much he wants to invest in each of those areas, and each area has its own benefits. These represent the 5 sections of our tech tree and research choices are the primary way that players decide what they are going to be good at (and not good at).
But other choices play into this too. The decision to leave your sovereign in your capital (where their charisma boosts your population growth for armies and infrastructure) or send them out to explore is made in the first few turns. Sending them out allows you to get a glimpse of the world, find potential sites for new cities, get experience, salvage supplies, complete quests and find champions.
This journal is going to talk about that last option. There are two types of champions in Fallen Enchantress, kingdom champions and empire champions. Players can only recruit champions from their allegiance, opposite allegiance champions can be attacked. So if you are playing as kingdom you can go out and hire kingdom champions, and kill the empire champions so your opponents don’t get them.
Champions don’t run around as they did in War of Magic, they don’t come to you, you must go to them. There are no randomly generated champions in the game, each champion is specifically designed to be unique and interesting. Most are found in the world, but some unique champions can only be earned through quests.
Champions are different from normal units because they can choose traits when they level up (as discussed in an earlier dev journal), they can wield the special armor, items and weapons in the world. Although you can outfit your armies with some pretty good magical armor and weapons (with enough crystal, production time and techs) they won’t compare to the equipment your champions can get. Champions have a higher accuracy than normal units, they have a chance to crit for double damage when attacking, they aren’t effected by overkill*, they can be imbued to cast spells (more about that in a future dev journal). And, although it’s possible to design units with traits, champions have the most interesting ones. Champions also get experience from quests**.
But before you go out to try to create an all champion army (btw: Altar is the best faction to attempt this with) they do have their weaknesses. They are expensive to recruit, they don’t tend to do as much damage or have as many hit points as large formations of units. And they typically need to have a few levels before they really start to be effective, unlike a large formation of archers which starts killing right away.
We also have some spells specifically for players looking to use their champions in interesting ways. Paragon weakens your sovereign, but gives a free level to the champion of your choice. Great for players who want to leave their sovereign at home and adventure with their heroes. Less altruistic sovereigns may choose to use Steal Spirit and taken some of their champions talents for themselves (at the cost of the champions life, but what do they say about making omelets).
How you decide to handle champions will be an important part of playing Fallen Enchantress. I look forward to hearing back from all of you on who your favorite champions are, and what strategies work the best for you when the beta begins.
* Overkill- Some monsters damage is modified by the amount of units in the defending stack. Don’t send large armies of peasants against dragons, they won’t last long.
** Experience from Quests- Armies on quests will get experience from battles, as normal, but all quests in Fallen Enchantress also give experience based on their difficulty which is only rewarded to champions on that quest.