I think we need something to judge the speed by. What does "fast" mean? 1 minute? 2 minutes? Or is 20 minutes fast? It would be compared to some games where tactical and strategic are separated.
E:wom combat usually lasts around 30 seconds for me, and I really hope there will be more depth to FE tactical combat than that.
Excellent point. The heirarchy for me is:
1. Not repeating turns. If I'm clicking the same actions over and over again something is wrong. That may be fine in an rpg, but isn't fun with army combat. Each action should have tension. Crits help with that, deciding if I want my unit to run away (when they are almost dead) or try to take one more swing that might take out that enemy. Hit points are a smaller ratio to damage than in rts games or role play games (unarmored foes might fall in 2 attacks form a unit of similar power, possible to die to a good crit, possible to live to 3 attacks if they get lucky). Powerful creatures may take many more.
In general playtesting so far spell damage has been creeping up, as have mana costs. With the thought being that you shouldnt be spamming spells, but when you do whip out a fireball you want it to mean something.
2. Not breaking focus (to much) from the main game. If this is a cleanup combat (like killing a bear or taking out a few bandits) it should play out quickly. I dont autoresolve combat intentionally as i want to make sure combat throughout a game is enjoyable. But i dont want to spend time walking my units around the map either. I dont mind more time for significant battles, but if I have two armored guys and an archer against some bandits it should be less than 60 seconds to send my armored guys out to throwdown, my archer to throw in some damage and my sovereign to watch it happen.
Abeix, for example has 170 hit points and the data modeler shows him as being extreme in hit points, even for his level. In the following monsters with stats higher than the normalized red are green, monsters with stats below the normalized range are red. So its an easy way to see that Abeix has a high Attack, Defense and Hit Points, but low Dodge. You can see the stats it measures form at the top. It expects a base of 10 hits points plus 4-8 per level of the monster. That's about where I aim for hit points. If attack if 6 and 3-5 per level you can see that attack is about half of hit points. Average damage is about half attack (in general) so it takes about 4 attacks for a monster to kill someone with his same stats. Players tend to have a little higher attack from cool equipment or large groups so they are closer to the 2 hit ratio (for even forces) that i discussed.
As always at this stage of the process, dont be to concerned abotu the numbers, those will be moved around significantly when real playtesting begins.