Why [1.00] Fallen Enchantress does not work

By on November 5, 2012 12:57:38 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

ntino

Join Date 10/2012
+2

First game I played was on challenging using Tarth - it was not interesting and easy I posted my opinions here and got flamed(by some) because I was playing Tarth on the default settings. I then started a new game with a custom sovereign - I dont remember what perks I went with exactly but it was mediocre - I did not pick any of the stronger traits because I did not want to abuse the game too much.

I don't review games but have a background in professional RTS gaming back when few people did that and have played many turn based strategy games even though I wouldn't call myself very good at TBS - simply because I never spent too much time on any one TBS game (other than Homm3/Homm2 a long time ago).

The short version:

I think that unfortunately Fallen Enchantress fails at the greater picture of being a fun game to play. After my first play through I thought that most of this can be remedied by balance but unfortunately, after the 2nd game, I think the game design simply does not work - it strays from the conventional tried and true ways of TBS in many aspects but fails to provide anything better and as silly as it might sound, for a game of this scope, it fails to delivery variety and uniqueness.

The long version.

Main problems with game design -

1)City management -

Why are cities even in this game - in most TBS games, you start with a wimpy outpost that can barely produce a chair given a whole season, and end up with something that can build a submarine in a couple of days - this is cool!

Not so in FE, you start with a normal kind of city, and you end up with a better version of the same city some 130-250 turns later. The only thing that has any effect on how nice it is are the starting stats - thats it, it doesn’t matter what you do to that city because everything works off of the starting stats or and adjacent resources. There can be many cities and they all look the same and can function in the same way - they might produce more gold or mana or whatever else but who cares about those things - which brings me to my next point....

2)Resources are just numbers -

Sure, for the few people that like this game and will play it hardcore on some very high difficulties they are very useful, but on Expert you hardly really need any resources - sure, you use them, but really, you almost always have a choice to do something else - dont have enough gold to get that hero - its ok, it can wait anyway, and you do have so many other things you can do. Dont have mana to cast spells - thats ok because you almost always have the option not to, or just wait till you can.

Your heroes always have stuff they can be doing, so even if you cant do something right now, you have something else to do - so in essence you don't really NEED all those resources. - This of course will not apply to the people that play the game on hard settings, but for us mere mortals this argument stands.

What about crystals, Metals and all that other stuff - well I have 130 turns into the game ending with a victory on a medium map with 3 other AIs and I havent used either, yet they are there from the very start of the game. And YES, I realize there are strategies that would really require you to invest in those early on, but you can do just fine without them for a long while.

GOLD - This is the only useful resource - the main reason to do anything with your cities and will allow you to do everything. In fact gold is paramount to your success in higher difficulties, this is fine, but boring. Its somewhat sad that half the game spent dealing with cities mostly amounts just to this one resource.

3)Magic.

What? The name Fallen Enchantress is very accurate - you do feel like a fallen mage that can maybe enchant some stuff - mainly big items like cities, but you can also do champions and yourself.

Wait, what about real magic? Its really easy to slow and haste and do a couple of other minor things, but since everyone gets the same spells and most starting heroes have a couple its just becomes part of the strategic interface. Your slow never gets better, and your fire spells do +2 damage per fire shard - How many fire shards will you have in your empire is anyone guess. In short, magic is not very magical and often times even on a mage kind of hero you are much better off using weapons especially if you have nice equipment to go with it.

Again, yes I do realize you can play a very customized empire and hero build that would allow for some magic potency - but really, its not easy, requires extreme min maxing to be competitive and also luck.

Spells also cost a FORTUNE, so you can hardly afford to cast them all the time until later in the game and only if you have been carefully cultivating your citizens, got lucky with essence, etc. Its not very fun to play a magic based sov only to find out you cant get any mana.

4)Items

Most are boring, some are cool, a lot of the boring items quickly become useless and the cool ones are far in between.

Now I know this was done to balance stuff out but you literaly get the same "magical" item 10 times in one game. but wait, once you look more carelly its not so magical its just another stat here and there. You can buy some items. You need gold to do that, and how do you get gold? Well one of the easiest ways is just selling stuff - in fact instead of using most of the stuff you get from fighting - you just sell it, because its useless anyway and spend that money on a new champion or rush something or get some items - like a horse.

Why not just give more gold in spoils and make the useless items disappear. Do I really need 10 venom sacks? 20 wolf pelts? 10 spider webs?

All of this has a big effect on heroes - for example, in my current game I really wanted my hero to wield a bow with double shot, picked all the right perks for that - I wanted a hero with a bow and some magic,.

In the end I never found a bow to wield, wasted abilities on that and had to pick other ones that would compliment a sword.

5) Heroes

Why the hell do my warrior heroes get all those magic perks and the other way around - you can have a very strong hero by level 8 if you get luck with a few abilities and a fairly shitty hero by level 15.

Skills like double strike, dodge, some others are very good, but a lot of skills are idiotic. Also, while you are able to pick certain paths, that absolutely does not mean that you aren’t stuck with what are often useless choices for skills.

All of this makes Heroes feel bland and you just end up with a bunch of similar heroes running around.

Add to this that most of the time, at least on Expert the AI heroes are a worthless bunch of idiots and the amount of heroes you get varies ALOT you start to wonder why you have them in the first place. I think it would be much cooler to have only units that could level up with new abilities and maybe your Sov for all those items, maybe +1 hero when you get certain tech.

6)Monsters.

The monsters are good for the most part, and are somewhat varied, which is nice. BUT, boy do they start to annoy the shit out of me when around turn 100 all these wimpy monsters start to roam the land and you have to micro manage stuff to fight them in case one of the packs actually presents any danger – I realize this might be a way to get extra experience for new armies... but its annoying.

7)Quests.

Why are some good and some are useless and again its completely random which ones and how many you get?! Some are stronger than they are led to believe while some are weaker and there is no way of knowing which is which without knowing every quest in the game. Its frustrating to find out that a “medium” strength quest has 8 Ogres guarding it killing the army you worked so hard for early in the game, while some other medium strength quests are easy. And all those Epic quests the game is full of? I was way too busy killing the AI to be doing anything on that side, not to mention my army was probably way too weak and I wasnt gonna fall into the guessing-how-strong-the-quest is again. I could of course save and reload but that gets old really fast and besides there seems to be a lot of hating “cheaters” on these boards so I did not resort to that despicable tactic.

 

NOW TO THE REALLY BAD STUFF!

8)AI

Unfortunately the worst part of this game stems from its poor AI. Without resorting to an insane amount of bonuses and just plain AI “cheating” of the kind that was prevalent 20 years ago in computer games, given the complexity of the game the AI cannot present any challenge, and unfortunately the game designers did not design the game keeping in mind the limitations of said AI.

One AI in my expert game was building Juggernauts by turn 70 I think with fully built up cities(and of cource rushing some without paying) . Another AI had just 2 cities and fell relatively quickly. Both had very poor heroes and it is evident that the AI does not know how to play the game – it only knows how to build units and attack you.

Given the amount of cheating help the AI gets to provide for a challenge to the player it becomes obvious just how limited it is.

A lot of this may come from the RPG and neutral stack fighting part of the game – its just a game the AI does not know or care to play, yet THAT is a major part of the game.

In short -the AI sucks at this game, and probably not because Frogboy does not know how to code AI. There is a reason why the majority of games that combine a lot of RPG with strategy are single player campaign mode only – its pretty hard to code a good AI for those games without resorting to a lot of bonuses and free units, etc.

 

9)Units

I dont know much about that aspect of the game because I played the 2 of my games without building almost any units, and I was still able to win. Its not that I didn’t want to build units – I just never had the need to, and it didn’t seem like the right thing to do.

So I guess I missed on a big part of the game but that’s hardly my fault.

10)Balance

The game lacks any balance. Which brings me to my next point.

11)Soveriegns

Some are good, some are bad, some are worst, but the custom creation traits lack any balance whatsoever, and needs to be redone. Of course that in itself does not hinder the player from enjoying the game but certainly some Ais are far better than others. Juggernauts being one example.

 

Where it goes totally wrong

The biggest problem of them all I think though is this – despite the fact that the game features many races, customized units and other stuff, the game feels like a Mod made by someone off of a different game.

In other words, the tools are there to make it a good game but the wrong design choices were made.

Example: Custom units – these would be great in mutli player but really, whats the point for a handicapped AI? The AI obviously cant do a good job designing them, And does not understand how to use the units it designs, it in turn that handicaps the AI. And the player can surely take advantage of the AI by designing certain overpowered combinations of traits – thus the AI would need more cheating to beat the player.

But even more than that, the game shies away from diversity when it comes to how the player can play the game – the races are all similar, the units are the same for these races, there are no Trolls, Dwarfs, Gnomes, Orcs. Elves or whatever else you can come up with in a game like this to make things more diverse.

The point here is having units in the game that are more than just some stats attached to them – units that have special abilities and require strategies to play against. Mix of different kind of units requiring the player to think how to beat a certain combination.

Instead what you have is just stacks of spearmen, or swordmen or whatever else that the AI pumps out. And the Neutrals on the map are very much the same way, save for a few exceptions.

BORING.

Let me finish by saying something I am sure I will get flamed for – Both games I played I did not finish. For a simple reason – it was not fun to play anymore. I killed 2 Ais in both of these games while not even encountering the 3rd AI – while in the second game I have revealed almost the entire map.

I just stopped playing the Expert/Expert game when for the 10th time the pitiful lord Verga used the last of his mana and escaped yet to another city that I have absolutely no idea where it might be and I am too tired to gather a search party. Lord Verga will NOT surrender though his score is now a mere 20 to mine 200 (was 120(him) to 70(me after killing first AI) when he declared war), furthermore, he wont even accept PEACE, even though it says the value of peace is -720 gold?!

I have 16 or so cities that I dont know what to do with. Ahead of me is a tech tree that I need to research with countless techs that I surely wont need to finish the other AI .

 

**********************************************************************************************************************


Now I really wanted to like this game, its sounds very fund and it is the kind of game I enjoy the most. However everything about this game is poorly designed.

Much may be fixed with balancing and tweaking – it does seem like this is a VERY modder friendly game.

But right now the game is broken at the core and is not very fun to replay. The AI is either too easy or frustrating when you see that its pumping units that you could not possibly hope for and that it cheats on every level from unit creation to buildings to scouting to founding cities, its relationship Neutral monsters and the list goes on – the game design makes the odds stack against the AI so its only hope to win is massively cheating.

There ARE good things about this game but in its core its broken, at least in my opinion - if you enjoy the game please continue playing and enjoying, do not flame me or the post for posting my opinion with something like "this game is so good you dont know how to play or enjoy it, why do you make posts about how the game sucks -just dont play it" - I took the time to make the post so that the community can benefit

 

To be clear, while I may not be playing much for this game for a while my hope in making this post is that some of these problems are addressed in the future by either Stardock or the Modding community, as well as promoting meaningful discussions of this game.

 

Thanks for reading.

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November 5, 2012 1:17:45 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Brad loves these threads... he'll thank you for writing.

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November 5, 2012 1:29:51 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

You may not like the game, some of your arguments are (maybe) valid. But most of it is a matter of taste (the randomness, unit design, quests and heros etc.). Sry to say but "EVERYTHING is poorly designed" and "the game/the core is BROKEN" is simply not true (first point) and nonsense (second point).

The problem with the greater picture of a fun game is, its for everybody a different picture. I have a lot of fun with FE. And now? Am i wrong? Are you wrong? No, but we have a different taste. 

FE still needs tweaking, balancing and AI improvements (to provide a fun game for everybody, who like FE for what it is). But the overall experience is fun and to stay with your thread title, i think FE does a great job.  

 

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November 5, 2012 1:50:06 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I feel the same as OP. I started about ten games and didn't finish any. My record is about 100 seasons. Playing every sovereign is the same: levelling heroes and city spam that really leads nothing. The game just doesn't keep you playing. FE doesn't give you enough incentives and aims for each moment of playing. Really you can skip many turns and nothing changes. So you play or you don't play - nothing really changes. It seems the game is not player-oriented.

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November 5, 2012 1:52:01 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Lantros,
You may not like the game, some of your arguments are (maybe) valid. But most of it is a matter of taste (the randomness, unit design, quests and heros etc.). Sry to say but "EVERYTHING is poorly designed" and "the game/the core is BROKEN" is simply not true (first point) and nonsense (second point).

The problem with the greater picture of a fun game is, its for everybody a different picture. I have a lot of fun with FE. And now? Am i wrong? Are you wrong? No, but we have a different taste. 

FE still needs tweaking, balancing and AI improvements (to provide a fun game for everybody, who like FE for what it is). But the overall experience is fun and to stay with your thread title, i think FE does a great job.  

 

 

Well, we both have valid opinions, of course different people like different things. Someone likes chess, someone doesnt, and some dont know how to play chess so whether chess is a good game is debatable.

I am just posting my opinion, of course its just that, my opinion - it cannot be a fact. And while for your this is not true and non-sense for me this is the only truth and the reason why I dont want to play at this point - I do think this is very moddable and some of those things are fixable and therefore i post! 

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November 5, 2012 2:02:26 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I think you should try some mods that are around, some of them make game extremely rich and very challenging.

 

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November 5, 2012 2:04:58 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

wow.. TL:DR (never thought I'd say that..)

But I wanted to toch what I did get to.

I have no idea what you are talking about in regards to resources.. 

I can never have enough metal and crystal if you ask me.. Had a unit cost 300 Metal late game and it wasn't even the most expansive.. 

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November 5, 2012 2:16:39 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

@ntino

And its a good thing you made your post. I simply wasn´t able not to say "Yeah, but i like the game"

What i really don´t understand are comments like from you, harmonius "Every sov. plays the same" I must be doing something wrong. But for me every sov. plays out differently. I don´t play my mage sov. like my melee sov. Why should i do this?

 

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November 5, 2012 2:21:42 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It is your opinion and you are entitled to it. I disagree with your opinion and am having a blast playing but we all have different things we are looking for in games and it seems this game is not for you.

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November 5, 2012 2:27:35 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Lantros,
@ntino

And its a good thing you made your post. I simply wasn´t able not to say "Yeah, but i like the game"

What i really don´t understand are comments like from you, harmonius "Every sov. plays the same" I must be doing something wrong. But for me every sov. plays out differently. I don´t play my mage sov. like my melee sov. Why should i do this?

 

To extrapolate - Sovs play very similary, and just because you picked a mage sov does not mean you will get to do much with that right away. Compare this to some other(the good ones of couuse) fantasy strategy games that feature different races - they will play differently - think of MOM for example. Sovs in this game determine races but there isnt that much difference between them, especially at the lower challenge levels.

As an example - compare the unit selection in this game vs a game like HOMM or AOW or MOM and a few others - Brad himself said that those are the games he wanted to remake!

Understand that I am not saying that this game is bad and not playable. There are far worse games but ultimately the game features ALOT of features but in reality those very same features don't bring that much to the table. 

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November 5, 2012 2:41:03 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting EvilMario,
I can never have enough metal and crystal if you ask me.. Had a unit cost 300 Metal late game and it wasn't even the most expansive..

What he's saying is that you did not NEED that 300 metal late game unit.

I enjoy crushing the AI with untouchable units that cost 200 metal and 100 crystal.  But the truth is, I do not need that unit.  My heroes will do it just fine. So will the 4 men spearman unit that I built around turn 40.

As time has gone by, and as I have gotten better and better at beating the AI, I have come to a point where I cannot find a setting that I really enjoy.  Expert is too easy. Ridiculous, once you have beaten it a few times to satisfy your ego, is a chore.  Insane needs exploits to be defeated on Ironman. I call beastlord, fortify+assassin dodge+blindness, mega fire mages, well-designed juggernauts, henchman stacking all exploits.

So I play Expert with standard sovereigns from time to time, and leave the game on about turn 100 when it becomes a walk in the park.I spend way more time on the forums than on the game, nowadays.

If you had asked me 20 days ago whether I would be now playing more X-Com or Fallen Enchantress, I would have given you the wrong answer...

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November 5, 2012 2:42:16 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

some of the OP's complaints are already being addressed so I wouldn't cry too hard. Remember GalCiv2 ? Remember all the work and tweaking they did to that game constantly to make it a fantastic polished classic? Stardock is doing the same thing here. I would recommend instead of ranting that you would post objective criticism and helpful suggestions instead.

I honestly can't think of a 4x game that was perfect out of the box. They have all had issues at the start but most get polished and tweaked for months/years afterwards to be much better games. When these types of games are released to the general public they tend to make quick progress on polishing them up.

Most of the issues brought up have been brought to the attention of Stardock in more meaningful posts. Feel free to participate in those threads.

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November 5, 2012 2:46:38 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ntino,
To extrapolate - Sovs play very similary, and just because you picked a mage sov does not mean you will get to do much with that right away. Compare this to some other(the good ones of couuse) fantasy strategy games that feature different races - they will play differently - think of MOM for example. Sovs in this game determine races but there isnt that much difference between them, especially at the lower challenge levels.

And this is it. I´m sure you played the game and i´m sure you tried different sovs. But i did this too and i made a completely different experience. My mage (wraith) sov. was very weak in the beginning and grows in a masskilling weapon. My melee sov. (ironeers) was usefull from the beginning and he was able to survive many adventures, but different playstyle. (I have some supporter builds in mind (healing, buffing - mage supporter / army initiative, army accuracy etc. for a "melee supporter"), but had no time to test it.)

The unit selection in FE is even bigger then in the other games. You can create so much different units. (I like to see more traits, more equip., abilitys etc. - But thats not the point. I always want more. ). And all those units will use the AI against me on the next maps. (...with the same stupid names i gave this units, because of my lack of creativity)

 

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November 5, 2012 2:56:39 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Lantros,

Quoting ntino, reply 10To extrapolate - Sovs play very similary, and just because you picked a mage sov does not mean you will get to do much with that right away. Compare this to some other(the good ones of couuse) fantasy strategy games that feature different races - they will play differently - think of MOM for example. Sovs in this game determine races but there isnt that much difference between them, especially at the lower challenge levels.

And this is it. I´m sure you played the game and i´m sure you tried different sovs. But i did this too and i made a completely different experience. My mage (wraith) sov. was very weak in the beginning and grows in a masskilling weapon. My melee sov. (ironeers) was usefull from the beginning and he was able to survive many adventures, but different playstyle. (I have some supporter builds in mind (healing, buffing - mage supporter / army initiative, army accuracy etc. for a "melee supporter"), but had no time to test it.)

The unit selection in FE is even bigger then in the other games. You can create so much different units. (I like to see more traits, more equip., abilitys etc. - But thats not the point. I always want more. ). And all those units will use the AI against me on the next maps. (...with the same stupid names i gave this units, because of my lack of creativity)

 

I think we play differently.

What difficulty and what settings did you play on, and to what turn? I don't see how you can successfuly play a mage early on - playing properly you need to do at-least 1-2 battles every turn with your sov(depending on your movement points), and if you are a mage race you better have a couple of mage heroes otherwise the whole magic tree becomes a waste. Where are you getting 30-60 mana per turn early on?

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November 5, 2012 3:00:40 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Tuidjy,

Quoting EvilMario, reply 7I can never have enough metal and crystal if you ask me.. Had a unit cost 300 Metal late game and it wasn't even the most expansive..

What he's saying is that you did not NEED that 300 metal late game unit.

I enjoy crushing the AI with untouchable units that cost 200 metal and 100 crystal.  But the truth is, I do not need that unit.  My heroes will do it just fine. So will the 4 men spearman unit that I built around turn 40.

As time has gone by, and as I have gotten better and better at beating the AI, I have come to a point where I cannot find a setting that I really enjoy.  Expert is too easy. Ridiculous, once you have beaten it a few times to satisfy your ego, is a chore.  Insane needs exploits to be defeated on Ironman. I call beastlord, fortify+assassin dodge+blindness, mega fire mages, well-designed juggernauts, henchman stacking all exploits.

So I play Expert with standard sovereigns from time to time, and leave the game on about turn 100 when it becomes a walk in the park.I spend way more time on the forums than on the game, nowadays.

If you had asked me 20 days ago whether I would be now playing more X-Com or Fallen Enchantress, I would have given you the wrong answer...
I see what your saying. But fighting Jugs if I don't have me some good 300 metal horsemen Then there is no way I'll beat them.. (unless of course I went magic..) 

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November 5, 2012 3:05:36 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting octaviusviii,
some of the OP's complaints are already being addressed so I wouldn't cry too hard. Remember GalCiv2 ? Remember all the work and tweaking they did to that game constantly to make it a fantastic polished classic? Stardock is doing the same thing here. I would recommend instead of ranting that you would post objective criticism and helpful suggestions instead.

I honestly can't think of a 4x game that was perfect out of the box. They have all had issues at the start but most get polished and tweaked for months/years afterwards to be much better games. When these types of games are released to the general public they tend to make quick progress on polishing them up.

Most of the issues brought up have been brought to the attention of Stardock in more meaningful posts. Feel free to participate in those threads.

If they were brought up, meaning a lot of others feel that same way, and stardock failed to do anything prior to release then they didnt do their job. Or maybe they dont agree or cant do these things

I am sorry, I was not around and was not aware of these posts. If everything was mentioned then there truly was no point in me posting. 

I am surprised that you consider this a rant rather than objective criticism as I was really going for the latter(yet you say these very things have all been mentioned - surely in an objective way?)! 

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November 5, 2012 3:19:14 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I found that city management was robust enough, and I definitely felt the effects of having different types of cities, and where those city types were located.  I've only played my first map and found that city development kept me quite interested.

I think I did notice that building improvements in the cities costs nothing but time?  I'll have to confirm this when I next play.  If so, it would be nice if there was an associated resource cost, even if the cost were reduction of resource income, which would make sense.  However you do have to choose between unit and building production, which forces you to plan more carefully.

At any rate, I enjoyed the city building my first time around... kind of wish there were larger than large maps to make a game truly epic.

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November 5, 2012 3:19:31 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums


I'm surprised that no one has yet pointed out that his point on city management is objectively false... and kind of suggests that he hasn't played a full game.

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November 5, 2012 3:21:41 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ntino,

I am surprised that you consider this a rant rather than objective criticism as I was really going for the latter(yet you say these very things have all been mentioned - surely in an objective way?)! 

I agree with many of your points - others demonstrate a small sample size of the games abilities.

Essessentially, at the heart of your complaint is that the heroes and RPG elements in the game have little to do with the 4x parts of the game, which I think is fair.

Also, the item distribution from lairs suck.  I agree with that one wholeheartly.  I'm beginning work a mod to kill both those bids with one stone, in making many more varied items, removing most items that can be bought in store from out of the lairs/goodie huts, and making the more powerful items based on the number of Elemental Shards you control - you know - so your heroes need the cities.

 

 

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November 5, 2012 3:25:24 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I think we play differently.

What difficulty and what settings did you play on, and to what turn? I don't see how you can successfuly play a mage early on - playing properly you need to do at-least 1-2 battles every turn with your sov(depending on your movement points), and if you are a mage race you better have a couple of mage heroes otherwise the whole magic tree becomes a waste. Where are you getting 30-60 mana per turn early on?

Always large (against 5 oppenents) or medium (against 3 oppenents) maps. Always on challenging/challenging. In the beginning it is so hard to play a mage sov. The shadow warg is very usefull (but this means: No Warlock -.- ) I also NEED UNITS. It doesn´t matter that in the beginning this are only guys with clubs. My mage units (range) and my monks (stuff guys with magical equip and dodge traits)  later on are sure better.   To be able to train them, i have to conquer every crystalmine (different goals with different strategies). 

No way to get 30-60 mana in the beginning. (I never spend much time with all the numbers. Thats why i´m not a good strategy player) But if i remember right, i had about 20 mana income per turn on turn 100.  So...every shard is good.

And research in magic is important. Beside the equip. you get more mana, more crystal and without luck in levelups (and you do not get the right magic traits) you can research good and usefull spells.

Most certainly there are much more effective ways to win a map. But I don´t play to win the map as fast as possible.

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November 5, 2012 3:25:57 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

ntino you obviously put a lot of time and thought into your opening post.  Thanks for that.

Unfortunately, I'm quickly coming to the same conclusions; the more I play the more it feels like Elemental with some more (and not necessarily meaningful) stuff.  I guess there was only so much to be expected considering the foundation upon which this game was built.

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November 5, 2012 3:27:01 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It seems more of a taste thing to me, I certainly agree that the game has issues, but I don't find them quite as severe.  A few tweeks here and there will do, I am enjoying it very much, 130 hours in.

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November 5, 2012 3:33:14 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I also whine too much about this game (look for my threads) and while quite many of them are valid, I can't say I can agree on sov and races. Each time I play sov, my platstyle differs... greatly accordingly.

The way Alter, Trog, Resoln, Magnar... they are rather quite different from others. (with one radically different)

 

And please do not compare it to Xcom 2012, it literally has no replayability or whatsoever.

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November 5, 2012 3:38:36 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

This post was way too long to make his points.

His TLDR was good and correct.

But I read number 4, and please don't implement that suggestion, it is wrong and bad design.

Mike.

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November 5, 2012 4:20:10 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

You can definitely play an early mage, I'm thinking Ceresa/Resoln here. And by that I don't mean you're spamming nukes in every battle; but you can go path of mage on Ceresa, get a decent melee hero as your second one, and rely on the warg and the shard demons with the occasional spell, you don't need to train units if you're careful with upgrading the Cyndrum demons. Focus on getting and upgrading shards, they'll give you both more demons to get through the early levels, and more mana so that pretty quickly you'll find yourself casting more and more on magic - it's not 100% casting, but it's a very different playstyle than being a melee sovereign.

The trait for bonus starting mana and the free shard harvesting tech is deceptively useful by the way: your very first city should plant next to a shard, immediately corrupt it and build on it, you can have a Young Cyndrum demon within the first few turns. Be careful with him, get a few killing blows. Immediately upgrade the shard - yes, your first two items built at your city should be a death altar then a death shrine - within a few more turns you have a regular Cyndrum demon, right about the time the first demon should hit 5 members. Building shard upgrades is like building units for Resoln, the extra mana income is a free bonus. It's better than building units really, because your shards will replace your demons for free if they die.

For that matter, Magnar works well too, in a distinctly different way - get a little military research and spam lots of very cheap slave spearmen, use them to clear through the easy fights without wasting mana, sacrifice them as needed to get mana for the more difficult fights. Again, not 100% casting, but it's definitely a different experience than any melee sovereign.

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November 5, 2012 4:27:25 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting hairrorist,

I'm surprised that no one has yet pointed out that his point on city management is objectively false... and kind of suggests that he hasn't played a full game.

I did play the game. I dont like to build 5 buildings which some variable from 1-2-3-4-5. Its ok in a game like Total war where really the tactical battle is where its supposed to make up for that but I actually think the total war games have  better city management - at-least it doesn't pretend to be something its not. 

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