I spent the weekend going through every quest in the XML, looking at the structure and tone of each quest. I am not sure who is making these quests or how many are planned to be in the final version, but I like them. The writing is great. I feel immersed in most quests I take on. There is a clear effort to make questing shine. I hope not all of them have been made yet, as this posts aspires to have you create situational quests for the released game. I pray that there is a goal towards expanding how the user is given a quest. Right now the only options used are moving a hero to a quest location and reaching a certain level of population. There needs to be more ways of interaction between quests and the user.
Playing an entire game with only these two methods throws me into a pattern of research, reaching the goodie hut, playing the quest, and then moving on with the game. Quests should be the game, not a sidenote. I am cursed with a very active imagination and am thus drawn to the story more than other players. Right now, a sandbox game has only the story I create for it. You can see those stories in my feedback posts on the AI. The thing is, quests have the potential to tell the story of the world of Elemental. They will only be able to do this if they can grab the average player's attention. They need to surprise him. Locking every quest away in a dungeon is the last thing you want. Quests need to pull the user into the game. Sure, using random events to surprise the player will break up monotony, but it doesn't entail a story. It doesn't put lore in front of the player.
One giant leap forward would be more pop ups that revel at a milestone being reached in the game. We have some of that, but it is not connected to a story. It feels bland against the tongue. I remember talk in the dev journals about having many many more triggers for quests. Buildings are the richest target for triggering a quest. This is a very short task to add something really special to the game. It allows quests to spring forth from buildings. It makes the cities we build become part of the story the game is telling. Getting a quest from your first city level, for instance, could trigger a quest that encourages exploration around one's capital. It might be hunting a pack of brutal wolves, clearing out spider nests in the hills, or even collecting the heads of trolls to post around your little village to scare off bears. The quests at this point would be the opening page of your adventure. Having each one set to random, makes the game even more interesting. A formal story could also be told throughout the game at every level of your city. Special buildings like an apothecary should have a guaranteed quest to gather ingredients in order to gain access to better potions. This would blow people away. It would be one of those moments where you have to check and make sure you are not in Vvardenfell, trying to join the Mages Guild. Citylevelup as a trigger would be the place to tell the story of each faction or Sovereign. It allows for longer story arches, requiring the whole game to finish. I would even go so far as to have the Masterquest linked to an adventurer building. This building, perhaps a simple Inn, could be upgraded with research in the adventure techs to allow for the next series of quests that eventually lead to the Masterquest.
Quests should tell the story of the choices the player is making. Becoming an agrarian focused civilization should open up a quest or two that turns that specialization into an adventure. The player would create a visceral level of immersion for himself. Imagine if heavy diplomacy research had a random chance to give you a quest that would force peace with your greatest enemy. Or perhaps a quest like The Arena that rewards research into warfare with a special armor piece. The quest could be about starting an order of knights and the armor might have a special emblem on the chest signifying this to the player.
If any devs are still awake after reading this far, I might as well ask that leveling a hero and getting a rare trait might trigger a quest. There is less need for this, but every option you add to quest triggers makes every part of the game better. I hope there is no technical reason not to do this. Since I am now emboldened by your determination to listen, I would also really recommend adding the prereq system that is in place for improvements to the quest trigger function as a prereq condition. I might even suggest making conditions like "H_Illana is in Army" or "Sovereign is in City." Making special quests for a specific unit is currently impossible. There are many quests I would like to make that only trigger when the Sov goes back to the capital.
As a last consideration I would say, think of the loyal and talented modders that have been creating buzz and stirring pots for this game. Think of all mods they could create. Think of all the modders you will create by having such an immersive game. Think of the possibilities of such a trigger. For God's sake, think of the ponies!