What would I like to see?
Vast Tech Tree with Several Different sections including Skills, Monsters, Fortifications, and Enhancements.
Area Effect Control over Naturally Spawning Creeps
Ability to Generate & Summon Beasts in your Area Effect and through Portal at will, but dependant on Cost.
Generals can not wear or use Armor, Items, or Artifacts.
Generals shouldn't level up. Progression of a Genral's advancement should be tied to three things: A seperate resource pool generated by monsters, gold, and how long the game has progressed.
Generals can Agment the Elemental Nature of Monsters
Using a system of points earned from Monsters within an Area Effect, Gold, and the Duration of the game, I'd like to progress my General within tech tree of units, skills, and fortifications that I want to appear and when. This is to say that I feel the ideal General should not be tied to levels, and should not have to gain experience points. Instead, they should be able to gather the "Energy of the Fallen" (those who die within a large AoE which determines a General's Control realm), and use it along with Gold to improve their ability to perform in the game.
For sake of Example and explaination I'll relate to these areas in the following:
"Energy of the Fallen" or, the Energy emitted from fallen dead within a Genral's AoE ring will be called EP.
The sate of progression in the game, the natural upgrade of units and buildings through time, will be called Stages.
Stage 1 - Beginning of Game
Stage 2 - Improved Units
Stage 3 - Seige Upgrade to Buildings
Stage 4 - Final Stage, Access to Everything.
Let's assume such a system was in play. I could desire Winged Angels from the portal, generate plant creatures within my AoE, and I want to create a temperary fortification to distract my enemy's assault on my towers. These facets can be goals of mine, and each have different requirements I have to meet first. In order to bring angels from the portal, I would likely have to spend more gold than EP, not to mention the game would also have to be in the proper Stage. For Angels, the game would need to currently be in Stage 4 for this to occure. I feel stages should not be influenced by Generals, as in large games one General can spend their entire time farming resources to invest into quickly advancing the entire army. Since this is a natural progression in the game, the ability to purchase said units should appear in my Tech Tree, or General's Shop, but has no relation to me having to purchase or invest into unclocking Angels.
Perhaps I'm the Queen of Thorns and I want to summon plant golems around me. Since I feel all Generals should have a "Command Radious" or Area of Effect ring (similiar to that of the Teleport ring) - this will allow multiple Genrals in play to have influence over certain creatures without intrupting play of other Generals. This also enforces Generals being on the field instead of sitting pretty in the base. But again, Plant Golems. After I've accquired considerable amounts of EP and Gold, I should be able to spend points within my Tech Tree on the ability to Summon Plant Golums. Once I purchase the ability, I have it for the remainder of the game. This allows me to invest EP into the ability, instead of Mana, and have creatures appear around me.
Why EP instead of MP? I feel that when you destroy an enemy, you take their souls and then twist them into your own forces. Simple as that. Energy can not be created nor destroyed, merely manipulated.
What if I want to summon a Fortification? Instead of healing buildings, I should be able to protect them with short-lived forts that only survive for a certain amount of time. To clarify, they naturally decay over a period this ensures people can be out on the field protecting buildings throughout the game. A fortification can increase the HP and Attack power of a tower for instance, and also absord much of the blow from oncoming attacks until it is destroyed. This can allow time for reienforcements to arrive and and also give time for the General to summon more units to protect the location. I feel that fortifications should be very costly, high cost in both EP and Gold which makes them hard to maintain over a duration of the game.
The more I play the game, the more units I have access to, including spells, armors, fortifications, etc. The more Rare and the more powerful, the more limited you are in bringing that unit, and the more costly it is! I could decide to have an entire army of small, whimpy cannon fodder soldiers that I could just keep throwing at the enemy's Demigods over and over and over. This would allow me time to act as I keep them busy stuck in the swarm of endless masses. But this could be countered by powerful AoE abilities that the player may have brought along, which opens up another can of worms.
This system will eventually require good players to bring various things to counter other players, allowing them to plan ahead and keep things 'just in case' another player decides to go one way, they can act enough. But it's all based on how much they've pre-planned their tactics well before the game has even begun. I could utilize spells which make my units immune to damage for a limited time, and my enemy has utilized a large force of creatures which specialize in dealing damage. In order to counter me, the enemy could have something up their pocket that cancels all immunities; furthermore, I could cancel their ability to cancel my ability by using a dispel or addition 'anti-magic' protection which wards off enemy spells for a limited time.
In short, being able to buff, guard, heal, and de-buff monsters within my AoE for a cost of EP and Gold.