Specialities and flaws
In HOMM3, there were complaints that some of the hero specialities were too strong in comparison to others. Everyone went for Cyra and Adela with the diplomacy
or for Dessa with logistics or Solmyr with the chain
lightning. Some heroes, with specialities in
mysticism, eagle eye and worthless spells were never
HOMM4 made the skill system a bit better. All skills now have more or less the same degree of usefullness. Combat and Order magic are possibly still overpowered, but not as badly as logistics and diplomacy used to be.
Unfortunately, they also decided to remove the hero specialities. Of course, you can never make all specialities balanced and some heroes will always be stronger than others, but removing all of them did make the heroes extremely impersonal.
My suggestion is to restore the specialities, but also include a flaw in each hero. The stronger the speciality, the worse your flaw is. With proper testing, it should be possible to equalize all heroes. Both speciality and flaw should be connected in the biography and there should be a number of heroes who have speciality nor flaw. I'll give a few possible examples. The biographies need a little spicing before they can be used in the game, but they give a basic idea.
Hero#1 (any might hero):
Hero#1 can make decisions within a second, which has
helped him survive an ambush during his time as a
lieutenant. Somehow, he manages to let his troops
move before those of the enemy. Unfortunately, this
often goes at the expense of the movement quality.
Speciality: All creatures +2 speed.
Flaw: All creatures -1 movement.
Hero#2 is known for his ability to train young
squires to perform more responsible tasks. His
knowledge of both might and magic allows these
squires to go different ways, depending on the choice
of strategy. However, training is costly and Hero#2
will not provide the money himself.
Speciality: Upgades a number of squires (L1) to either halbardiers or healers (L2) every day, depending on hero level.
Flaw: Costs 200 G per day. If you can't pay, speciality does not work.
Hero#3 (Any hero):
Even as a child, hero#3 was never late for anything.
In adulthood, he only increased this sense of
punctuality and has found many ways to decrease the
time of traveling. Most of this saving of time comes
from driving the army to a running pace. This gets
them where he wants them to go, but the fatigue does
not do the battle quality any good.
Speciality: Increases army movement by 25%.
Flaw: Decreases army attack skill by 20%.
Misfortune always seems to follow Hero#4. Black cats
follow her everywhere, clovers decay and horseshoes
break when she walks by. Over the years, she has
learned to rub this misfortune off on others, but
that does not mean that she is immume to it herself.
Speciality: Has immediate access to the misfortune spell at no mana cost.
Flaw: Continiously suffers from misfortune.
Hero#5 (Any magic hero):
Years ago, a lightning bolt almost killed Hero#5. She
was healed, but the shock left her brain permanently
altered. The forces that remained in her gave her an
increased understanding of the forces of destruction,
but had some very unfortunate side-effects.
Speciality: +50% effect to all direct damage spells.
Flaw: Has a 20% chance every turn to become berserk. This being the ability, but not the spell. She will not attack your own creatures, but run uncontrolled towards the enemy.
Hero#6 (Any hero):
Hero#6 is possibly the greatest talker ever. He can
make a lost battle appear to be a won battle to his
troops. Often, this left his troops with confidence
at a point at which they would normally have given
up. However, they sometimes run into the enemy with
such a confidence that they don't mind their
Speciality: +5 morale to all troops. All are immume to sorrow spells.
Flaw: Decreases army defense skill by 20%.
These were some heroes with heavy effects. The following have less severe bonusses and flaws
Hero#7 (Any magic hero):
Hero#7 has studied the forces of nature for a very
long time can draw upon these forces to keep her
casting spells where others run out of mana.
Unfortunately, this concentration led her to forget
parts about the conjugation of power in her spells.
Speciality: Regenerates 4 extra spell points per day.
Flaw: Decrease of spell power by 5%.
Being a bandit himself, Hero#8 has always had the
respect from his fellow scum of the earth. His
leadership increases their power, but not many others
trust him in their negociations.
Speciality: Increases speed by 1, attack and defense by 10% of all bandits for every 5 levels obtained. First bonus obtained at level 1, second at level 6, etc.
Flaw: Decreases the effectiveness of any diplomacy and charm skill in the army.
Hero#9 has saved many people over the years and for a
long time studied the art of bringing back the dead.
She is one of the best in the country at this point,
which has actually insulted the angels. Feeling that
a mere mortal pretends to be one of them by taking
Speciality: Increases ressurection skill by 1% for every level obtained.
Flaw: All angels in the same army suffer -5 morale.