1. Play the realms in order, as they are sorted by difficulty.
2. Do not be afraid to use the easy mode and then increase the difficulty as you get better.
3. Pay attention to several aspects, here are some hints
– you can queue build orders, but it is better not to; this way the gold is not “reserved” and you have a better overview
– level your hero with easy prey, as you would in a MOBA; seek out the easy NPC enemies for early levels and loot
– heal your troops and hero properly by letting them rest in your (friendly) domain
– focus on a playstyle as a beginner; do you want to go with spellcasting, strong units, summoning, undead and so on – the idea of how to play is important while you enjoy creating your race
– overwhelm the enemy in numbers; it is less about a 1:1 army, and more about placing multiple armies next to each other and then attacking strong enemies or picking on weak enemies.
– manual combat gives better results in difficult terrain where auto mode would fail; you can also learn a lot by watching the PCs replay.
– being a “good do-er” can make some scenarios easier; having NPCs on your side instead of having to fight through everyone.
4. My take on recommending you a beginner race setup
The race itself does not matter, as it is purely cosmetics and the gameplay relevant traits can be changed as you like. Noble High Orcs who wield magic and made out of peaceful diplomats? You got it. Cannibalistic Chaos Dwarfs with super buff astral bodies? Possible. Pick any “race skin” you like and pay attention to these gameplay traits.
Body: Keen-Sighted (+20% Accuracy for ranged physical attacks)
Mind: Overwhelm Tactics (+20% Critical Hit when units standing next to each other)
Feudal origin: great synergy of Standing Together (+20% Damage when units standing next to each other) with Overwhelm Tactics – this is easiest as you can pair archers/rangers and defenders/shield bearers well for straightforward combat
Ritual Cannibals – free healing during battle by eating corpses
Gifted Casters – great pick for beginners as spells are very strong during battle and can change the tide
alternative choice for Ritual Cannibals (if you dislike the evil alignment): Adapt Settlers
Good starting tomes
Tome of Roots (allrounder)
Tome of Enchantment (good unit focus)
Cryomancy and Pyromance – strong, but depending on enemies
I have seen some suggests the Tome of Horde, which I do not recommend for beginners. It can be good, but asks for a certain specific playstyle. Hence my more general/allrounder recommendations for beginners.
Tome of Roots, Enchantment and the elemental ones are great for unit enhancements while they also offer powerful offensive magic. You might be surprised how strong a weapon with poison, fire, freeze damage can be!
Whether you choose Champion or Wizard King is of little importance at first. Champion is more beginner friendly, but both are quite strong, with Wizard King being much more powerful in the offence.
Weapon for your hero
Sword and shield, spirit orb, bow – avoid crossbow and the rest as a beginner. You can still have fun by recruiting more heroes or changing your weapon.
Reason for choosing these weapons: they have multihits, which makes them more friendlier in regards of accuracy overall, especially as a beginner when you need to get used to which weapon type does what and how it works.
5. Last but not least, remember the advice you were given at school every day: read, read, read.
Take your time to read. The game will explain everything to you at a very comfortable pace, as long as you follow the “progression path” and take your time to read what does what.
In fact, much of the tutorial mission is so basic that you may even recognise some tips from other games such as Civilization.
Good luck and have fun!
Increase City Cap
Want to expand your empire? Not sure how to do it with a 3/3 city limit?
There is an Imperium perk that is often overlooked, called Expanded Governance.
Often overlooked is not because people simply miss it. People overlook the fact that they can use it more than once at an increased cost to the empire.
You can see here with its increased cost for a fitfh city.
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