I think this topic has already been treated some time before, but I'm happy to have a discussion about it again.
The Spell Of Making (SOM) is a victory condition that presents two issues:
- AIs seems not interested in doing it. I've seen a post of 2 people that said that the AI started it in their game, but I've never seen that in my games. Maybe it is necessary long games (>300 turns) to trigger the AIs, idk.
- AIs shows no interest when the player is trying to get it.
Exactly the same that happens with the Master Quest. Although the MQ is out of the game (I don't want the AI to go for it, and they seem to do nothing if player tries it), but I find it could be interesting if the AIs tried the SOM.
With the current situation, reaching it is very easy. The only problem is that you need 100 crystal (maybe 100 more for the other tower, I'm not sure), and 100 metal, wich is easier to gather. And a lot of money for rushing the towers. So, in about in 2-3 turns, if you have all that, you can start casting it. In 12-13 turns, since the tech is reached, the game is finished, and no one will move a finger to avoid it.
Imagine the opposite: the AIs start casting the SOM. The player would probably have little chances to prevent it.
My suggestion was simple: each tower constructed added a -25 to diplomacy. That is war for sure...But some more turns for the casting, and making AIs attack the cities with the towers is necessary too, if you want to give challenge to the SOM.
Now, SOM is just an easy way to get victory if you don't want a long campaing full of battles with enemies that can't face your elite units and champs, and the MQ is far away to decide going for it (or it will just take more turns).
One more thing: if AIs can cast it, what would happen if, let's say, the player and another AI cast it in the same turn? Who wins?
EDIT: I tried MQ and later saveloaded to go for SOM with the same game (I wanted to check both of them), and I found that the MQ gives you a higher final score than the SOM.