Hey, just finished up a game. It was a ton of fun! I played on easy since it had been awhile, and started steamrolling since I got the hang of it. Game runs at a pretty good pace, even 300+ turns in.
Elemental FE has a really unique feel I haven't been able to capture in another 4X game. It gives me customization, it gives me leveling up of my troops and getting attached, gives me unique hero mechanics, gives me an awesome spell system... It's got so many good things, it's just making sure they all sync together well.
One thing that needs to be looked at is the rapid early game expansion. It makes sense, these powerful people rally some wastelanders and begin their empires. The thing is 1. Pioneers are pretty easy to train 2. Starting a new city is no problem, as in it almost immediately gives a surplus of resources.
City spam was helped by having only certain areas be fertile, so you go and build in the areas that have resources, and there are only so many. I think there needs to be harsher penalties, a simple sort of system would be that basically your cities have a negative effect on your empire until they reach level 2. (Or something similar).
Another thing that I really enjoy is the leveling of the cities themselves. Gives a chance for the cities to be unique, and also makes you value your higher end cities more. There is a really cool system at work, with some improvements being "common", others "rare" etc. I want more of these! I found myself using only one of the improvements 90% of the time. Like Archivist over anything else, etc. It'd add a lot of flavour to the cities if there were more rare, unique improvements. Like Venice, how the heck did that unfold? A rich cultural city built over the waters... If once in awhile one of your cities can have something truly unique, that'd be awesome.
I'd also like a toggle-able "Perform upgrades if que is empty" sort of button for each city. It's a pain to go back and upgrade attached shrines/mines/quarries because I've simply forgot about them. If the que is empty, and upgrading these resources doesn't cost me anything, it should go ahead and upgrade that bell tower to a town hall, etc. Not sure if this is how it works but for any resources attached by outpost to a city, the outpost should have an auto-upgrade toggle as well, or those resources should be tied into the cities production que through the build tab.
The last thing I have for this section is it'd be nice to have a "super rare spot", whether they be amid monster-infested territory, just a random spawn, or some kind of quest reward. I miss in GalCiv2 where you'd find that big white dot inside a ring and go "ERMAGERD A UTOPIA PLANET" and you'd fight tooth and nail to keep that thing.
A unique quest idea I had would be you fight some sort of tough monster, you get item X, you use item X to destroy a Earth Shard permanently, releasing the green energies of awesomeness and creating a area with high grain/material/essence. Unique things are fun!
Not too much to say in this category. I had an awesome time running around leveling my "green" armies, then dispersing the elite troops (Whom were noble enough now to have the "Royal" prefix) into new armies, then running around with those. The thing is, I feel like FE is not sure whether it wants to be a strategic military game like Civ, or more of a tactical military game like a squad-based RPG. I say, have both! Some interface options (like rally points from galciv2) that could help automate the production and guidance of our troops would help a lot. That way you can have the big strategic aspect, and in an important battle you can still hop in and make a difference with your hand-made troops the tactical way.|
Also, more traits! I'm sure you guys can think of more unique things. I'd enjoy more + per level traits as well. That 3 health from the beginning doesn't go to far. If it was 3+1 per level or something, that'd be neat.
What can I say, I love this part of the game. Designing my units makes me feel like this is my Empire. The more I can control the aesthetic, and provide a certain cultural feel, the more I am attached to Kingdom and the more I become invested in play. Am I running heavily Armored Knights with broadswords as my elite troops? Or are my elite troops highly trained Archmages with glimmering infernal jewelry accompanied by a flamethrower of a staff? The more options the merrier!
One of my biggest pet peeves is the magical item system. Trinkets and such should be premade (Like the amulets and rings, etc) however I feel like Armor and Weapons should have a more customizable system. You pick your weapon, and then you pick an enchantment to go on it. I don't always like having a lightning hammer, maybe I want a frost hammer or something. Or I want a banishing spear. Or I want plate mail with fire resistance, or plate mail that gives me +10 magic resist, or plate boots that increase my tactical speed by two for one round, etc. Maybe I want to be able to add an effect to the arch mages robes that increases her damage by (+1 per fire shard). More enchantments tied to shard would be interesting, such as (+1 Initiative per wind shard) enchantments for boots/gauntlets would be awesome. This is the only thing that I frown about when playing.
Love them, just feel we need more of them with more varied rewards really. Unique scenarios like the one I said in the city section would be neat!
Feels good to me, I'm always good for more in this category. I always like to feel that my civilization can advance somewhere, it's not like we know all the secrets of existence.
I love the new interface, the new essence system, the everything. Just need more unique spells! One I was thinking about was granting 1 essence to a city with a mana upkeep of like 10 per turn or something (can be tuned obviously). Watching one of my champions hurling focused fireballs was such a good feeling. Another awesome feeling was having an enemy suddenly surging into my borders, only to be stopped in his track by a few key tremors, followed by my border patrol cavalry swopping in and cutting them off one by one. It's so good to feel a rich magical fantasy background to a game.
Looking good, I only played on easy so it wasn't too hard. I'd like the way they barter to be looked at. When they ask me to go to war with someone for 17 (Of something) I'm kinda wondering why they would ask that. My next game will be on normal difficulty so we'll see how that goes.
That's it! If you read that whole thing, thank you for your time and I look forward to reading your replies. I really do love this game and have high hopes for it, now that it's nearing completion-I can start showing off an amazingly unique 4x experience to my friends, and try to get them to buy it . This is just my thoughts on something I've been following since I first heard WoM being developed, it's been a fun ride.