I find myself in a weird position of sort of disagreeing with myself about the strength of the Sovereigns.
I got to finish my game last night that I started awhile back as Ceresa. Had a great game, started out pinched in between Kraxis and Altair, and then had the Lombard Desert to the south. I could really only build one city for the longest time, lots of desert. I have never seen so many of those Umber critters roaming around in any game before. The nest of three of those things are really quite nasty. The Southest really became the battle ground between me and Altair. Between the attacks and counter attacks, it was actually very difficult to do any type of expansion. Almost all resources were used just to keep pace with Altar. Kraxis was pinned by a land bridge on my northwest border, so I left him alone. More on that later. I finally was able to reduce Altar to one city and that was a one that was just settled. I razed the rest of them because we had changed hands back and forth about a dozens times. Neither one of us could hang on to any one city, so I tried a different tactic. My Capital was by far the biggest, and I could absorb the loss of the ctities better than Altar. It worked. The fall and razing of Athica was the turning point. Reduced to the tatered remains of a hovel, crippled heroes, and no troops--Relias agreed to become a vassal. At that time I realized how worthless they are with the Broken Spirit injury. So I stole his spirit and moved on. The confetti had even completely fallen on my victory parade when Procipinee marched into the little village and took it over. This was trouble. I was signficantly behind Procipinee in power, about 235 to 115 (ish), but by our troops we were not even that close. So started the second great war in the rebuilding of Elemental. It played out very much like the first, except Procipinee was stronger. However, I decided to skip the village she stole from me and took over a bigger city farther east. This city, Clover, became an absolute awful place to live. I razed the little city in between my capital and Clover and just tried to keep these two cities. However, about this time I discovered Dirge of Ceresa. Here is a thread on this spell--https://forums.elementalgame.com/416968. I only tinkered with this spell before, but this was a bigger game. Wow, this spell is a game changer. Especially since my new units, the Oracle's Guards, were able to escort some pioneers around and I had some shards. I had 6 death shards and 4 fire shards by this time in the game. The three escorts I had with me also were well served by this spell. Ceresa did not have enough life or armor to go alone, but the guards were able to slow fast units just enough for this spell to finally trigger. Entire fields of troops lay dead and the hands of this spell. By the end of the war with Pariden, Ceresa's level was in the upper teens. Nothing could even handle the first casting of the spell. Since Gilden and Kraxis were pretty far behind in power, I took this time to Explore. I took over the Lombard desert, added a dragon to my ranks, and really went square by square through the whold map. By the time I got done, and yes I could have easily ended the game long before this, but I just wanted to see what was out there. Ceresa was level 33 and I had 15 death shards and 8 fire shards (I kept the fire shards just in case for fireball and Soul Burning), and 1 of each of the other 3. When I fought the battles for the Dragon's Eyes leading up to the Ashwake Dragons, I one shot everything with the Dirge spell. The Ashwake Dragons were the only thing that actually survived the initial casting, but died on the second dose of poison, maybe 1 survived to the third dose. This spell is crazy powerful, although you do have to be careful around earth critters. However, my guards were ridiculously powerful since they got all the experience of watching me cast that spell
Here is where my confusion lies. Two points.
1. I killed Gilden just because, and I wandered around. Without even fighting Karavox or taking over his only city (wow did he have a bad starting spot), the game ended by him surrendering. I didn't even ask. Is that normal? Granted, my power level was 1000 and something, and I think his was 20 or 30. Is it normal that they just give up? I didn't even ask for the surrender. He just gave up. Very confusing ending.
2. I recently made a post about increasing the sovereigns power (https://forums.elementalgame.com/428074). I have read some great suggestions about how to change the sovereign around a little bit. I still think the Sovereigns need something extra, especially versus regular champions. However, by the end of this game, Ceresa was absolutely ridiculous. I kept the game longer just to mess around with her. She had pretty good equipment, including Gladiator Armor that I found. I never even changed Weapons, the Soul Staff worked fine through the whole game. I find it a little confusing because I think the Sovereigns are weak in the game, but she became an absolute monster. There is nothing in the game that can survive that spell, except earth creatures. Ceresa was maxed out Path of the Mage, Evoker 3, Prodigy 3, Affinity, and the staff increased damage. Plus I had 15 Death Shards. I know I want the Sovereigns to be more powerful, but wow, does that spell need a major reduction. Maybe a level 2 or 3 spell granting Poison Immunity, even a level 5 spell granting an entire army poison immunity. How about a Shard of Life spell, that can turn only a Death Shard into a Life Shard.
What do you all think about the game giving up, and I am very interested about suggestions with the Dirge Spell. Spells changing Shards need to be level 5.