I was away for a while so I just wanted to say that I appreciate the feedback
These are just some thoughts about heroes and their place in the game as the scale of armies and difficulty of encounters increase. I do not know how hard it would be to add a unit of troops stats to a commanders stats and calculate combat and status effects, but this is obviously not the only way to do it.
Heroes could add to units simply by being next to them, as they do when they attack, and units could defend the hero if the hero is attacked by swapping places, taking damage etc.
I am pretty sure some version of this could work. This system could also be applied to city governors to give them some interesting options. For example, a governor gets xp based on buildings/units built/time spent in city, with a special skill tree to improve his management skills.
I just feel the need something more.
I can't remember heroes being assigned to troops in HoMM, OliverFA_306, but if you are referring to the participating from the sidelines bit, I feel that it adds a lot to the epic feel (Legendary).
Buffing hero xp gain in some way and increasing the power of the skill trees seem like what many people want, and I agree with this, but I feel that is covered elsewhere. What I really want to see are some hero mechanics, not necessarily complex, which add real depth to the heroes.
animageous said it well: 'It irks me so much that I have just fought my way through 10 hordes of rampaging enemies, just to gain a "+1 to attack" trait. It's so... lacklustre. And, as has been repeated on so very many threads, it doesn't feel "legendary" in the slightest.'
Cavil: "I would like to have that option for a Sovereign to join a unit thus giving some bonus to attack perhaps or spell resistance based on his class. Seems more "realistic" that way."
Definitely. As the scale increases, the individual hero needs to add something to the entire army beyond just a few spell buffs. Particularly if they are not spell casters.
AlienFromBeyond: "So kind of like some tabletop miniatures wargames (Warhammer Fantasy Battle comes to mind)? Let champions become the leader of a squad/unit, adding various bonuses to them as a result? That would be pretty cool actually. Imagine a mage unit all chating in unison with the lead mage champion for powered up spells, or a high initiative melee unit with an assassin sneaking around to the backline and shanking all the archers. Could be cool, would be hard to make/balance though.
Exactly like that. This implementation would add so much to the current model.
@Darxim: My suggestion was really to allow for the two alternatives. I too like heroes participating directly and getting into the fray.
I think that some of the more squishy heroes like mages, as an alternative, could be allowed to stand on the sidelines and participate with spells, rather than be in the middel of the action. Sometimes it is really frustrating to have a ranged character downed on the first round, when all you really want them to do is cast haste a few times. There is an entire level of play which could take place on the strategic level of combat.
@ampoliros5: You are right. I am just brainstorming. The suggestion, in its raw form, might not fit, but having heroes on another level from the rank and file is necessary to create the feeling of Legendary. Heroes, as they stand, are not really filled with OOOMPH!
More experience would of course help make heroes more powerful, and this is the short cut, or perhaps more band-aid, to what I see as in large parts a problem with hero relevance.
@parrotmath: I think that abstracting like that is unneccesary. The hero needs to be useful throughout, and without increasing hp and damageoutput dramatically they have no real use in the late game.
Heroes are obviously useful for buffing and early summoning/city specialisation, but the combat/city governor aspect is just lacking in a major way. The lack of xp is definitely a factor.
Heroes surrounded by troops, or at the back supporting, is exactly the kind of thing I am looking for.
Sanati: "When WoM came out I had really wanted a system that worked similar to the Warhammer 40k Dawn of War, or King Arthur games. Just like what you are asking for, with the hero attaching to a squad of units and leading them into battle, or having their own custom squad of units. At this point though I think heroes have come far enough where they don't really need that kind of system IMO, they could use a few tweaks sure, but nothing so drastic, at least not for all of them. I think it would be awesome if commanders worked like that though, would take a lot of work to implement but would make the class a lot more special and fun."
This is where I am. I agree that this is a major change. Possibly too big, and obviously more complex than just plopping the hero into a troop. I would like to see it for the flavour and the fun.