Players have the option to summon a guardian for each portal that reaches tier 3. Once summoned, the timer refresh switches to banner effect. When the timer reaches zero, the banner zealot gains a combat effect. Each leader has a different ability, which is taken from a combination of troop abilities. For example, Shadow Knights have a fear and plague combo effect for their banner zealots. Eventually, I might allow players to pick and choose the active effects as upgrades.
When the banner zealots are killed, they trigger an area effect. It is pretty powerful, so enemies can take significant damage and also become incapacitated. This means players need to be aware of enemy zealots that are near them. This is especially true when an enemy leader is around, since that leader can sacrifice its own zealot to trigger the effect when active. I think that adds a fun element to the game.
I also added some additional power states to portals. Magic sources transition to portals with full power when first summoned. When a portal is partially destroyed and then captured, it transitions to a portal with half power. Another capture moves to no power generated. Finally, the next capture destroys the portal. The power generation is basically halved each time, while all other functionality is the same. So banner zealots are still very useful even for portals that don’t generate any power.
Furthermore, each source portal generates power independently of its banner connection. The amount of power yielded by the connection is determined by the destination portal. For example, a portal with no power could send zealots to a destination portal with full power. Without the connection, the source portal would not generate any power. With the connection, the source portal would generate power of that destination portal. If both were full power portals, then that source portal plus the connection would essentially produce double the normal power for that pair.
Power is only generated for the banner connection if the destination is a friendly portal. That way players can’t exploit an enemy portal by keeping it around just to take the power at a higher amount. In addition, the rate of power per pulse event is capped at a max value. The maximum amount of power that can be accumulated at a given time is also capped. Those caps are based on the total portals owned by a player as well as an overall maximum amount.
The idea is to keep the game action flowing while preventing it from becoming overwhelming with too much power generation. I will continue to tweak those types of mechanics to ensure that the game feels fun. I will try to always make sure that decisions are made with the goal of making the game as much fun as possible.
I will probably spend the next 2 weeks finishing various tasks I have had on my list for a while. I will add an editor option to select which magic sources can be spawn points. That way I can control how close players spawn next to each other. I will make a new board that has a better layout. I will add some additional AI code to make computer players more challenging when attacking fortresses. Plus, I will continue to add new artwork to the game.
After those items are completed, I will focus on getting the multiplayer fully working. That is the last major hurdle to accomplish. When I have that code in place, I will create my first official Alpha release. Then I can start multiplayer testing and make gameplay changes based on those experiences. That’s when things really start to accelerate. I can’t wait to play my first multiplayer game of Pursuit of Power 2! Thanks for taking the time to learn about my game