First off, the game is a surprisingly addictive little gem and this is coming from someone who’s played hundreds of AAA and not so AAA titles since the mid 90s, so my hats off to you, truly an excellent mix of variety, depth and some healthy randomness! Voted for it on Greenlight, you definitely deserve a Steam release.
However the UI or at least some help section will still need some work because the Steam forum would be flooded with questions at its current state. The library is of course a nice touch for those of us with a knack for the immersive or retro feel but people will want to find this info online as well, not to mention all the things not explained by the library.
Most importantly, the way enemies are generated is largely unexplained, yet it seems like the defining factor of how one should play the game. Are they based on your character level? Or your creatures’ levels? If the latter, how exactly does it work? Is it based on the strongest creature in your party (in which case you should try keeping them all evenly levelled, stabling the strong ones until the weak ones catch up)? Or an average of sorts (in which case it doesn’t matter)? Does the size of your party affect the calculation? Do the creatures in your stables count? And so on. Different answers to these questions would warrant strongly different playstyles so people will want to know this.
Take my situation for instance - I’m still pretty early in the game, playing a Life Mage currently at lvl 21 with a party of 2 lvl 25, 2 lvl 24 and 1 lvl 7 creature. I held off on summoning more than 4 creatures until recently because I was under the impression that enemy party size grows to always match mine so summoning a new weak lvl 1 creature might even put me at a disadvantage (unless that creature has a very attractive ability that makes it worth developing).
This impression came from the (probably) coincidence that enemy party size grew from an average of 2 to an average of 4 just when I summoned my 3rd and 4th creatures somewhere during the early levels. I say “probably” because when I went in with just 2 creatures in my party with the other 2 stabled, I still kept meeting parties of 3-4 enemies which seemed to disprove my assumption that they adapt to my party size. That is unless they only adapt upwards OR my stabled creatures count as well. See how many questions can arise here?
Anyway, even on lvl 1 realms I’m now pretty evenly matched by the parties I meet so I started wondering about enemy creature levels.
I bought a scroll of Identify Creature from the vendor in the war room and used it on some mobs at a fresh lvl 1 realm. Lo and behold, the enemy creatures were in the lvl 10-12 range and here’s what I don’t get:
How come an enemy lvl 10 Berserker Fiend has more hp (298) than any of my lvl 24-25 creatures (210-270)? By the way it also did ca. 130 damage per hit so it’s more than a match for anything I have.
Do note that all my creatures are equipped with artifacts, some of which seemed pretty decent to me, compared to the average loot. E.g. my Unicorn Vivifier at lvl 25 has some necklace giving it +56 hp along with tons of luck, speed, some all defense and an on hit effect and even so she’s “only” sitting at 272.
I checked a couple of other mobs and they were all lvl 10-12 and had 210-290 hp. My now lvl 9 Bloodhound has a grand total of 72 hp without artifacts. Needless to say, he rolls over every time one of these lvl 10 demigods looks at him funny. The only time he doesn’t get creamed in the first round is when nobody attacks him. It sucks to be a newly summoned creature in Siralim.
I read on here that unlocking the blacksmith equips enemies with artifacts too, however that still doesn’t explain these differences. The average artifact at my current level gives around +60 hp. So how can these lvl 10 grunts put up such a fight against my hardened lvl 20+ troop?
On a sidenote I personally think that artifacts should be a privilege of the player and some elite/named/boss monsters at best because power progression is a lot more satisfying when you feel like you’re actually gaining advantages as you progress instead of just working down your disadvantages.
I know it technically seems like the same thing, but our psychology just works that way - just like we’re happier for money gained than money not lost, we’re also happier for advantages gained than a disadvantage lost.
If you really must equip the mobs with artifacts then they should be of common quality, not the sort of legendary world destroyers that lvl 10 mobs must be decked out in now to give my lvl 25 creatures such a run for their money.