Disclaimer: As I finish writing this post, I realize that it is muuuuuch longer than I thought it would be when I started, so for those who don’t feel like wasting their time reading the all thing:
TL;DR : A dude and his wife have been playing Empire and puzzles for five month under the same conditions. For some reason, they have the arrogance to think that their experience is worth reporting. So far, they are both rather happy with the game.
I’ve been lurking the forums for a while, and after reading the multiple threads/debates regarding 5*/4* stars heroes drop rates, ascension mats scarcity, RNG cruelty, the Luck factor, the pace of the progression for new players, and so on… I thought I could bring a somehow singular feedback by providing a side by side comparison between two accounts which present the particularity of being quite similar in almost every aspect.
I started playing E&P just before Christmas 2017 and my wife joined the fun just a few days later. Since then, we played at the same pace, with the same level of dedication, joined different but very similar alliances, fought the same level of titans and spent the same amount of money…
Since the beginning, we clear 2 monster chests a day. I took us a couple of weeks before really engaging in raids but since then we also clear on average 1 raid chest a day (both of us don’t speed up chests with gems). As for alliances, we waited something like 2 months before joining one: the time to assemble a team that wouldn’t get wiped out by a single titan hit and when we reached the point of the game where we needed non farmable ascension mats to improve our heroes.
For some reason we decided not to join the same alliance but it turned out that they were and still remain very similar: 15-20 members alliances struggling to recruit new members and with only a dozen members who are daily active. That is to say that we both end up fighting 5*/4* titans and we fill on average one titan chest a week (she defeated 78 titans, I did 77). Using all our hits every day we currently both rank A or A+ on every titan we fight and our loot tier is generally VII. As for wars, we didn’t keep track of all the results but there again I think that I can safely assert that the win/loose ratio is roughly the same between our two alliances (with more wins than losses).
We went strictly F2P for the first two months or so and, when we decided that this game gave us enough fun to be worth putting in some money, we made this rule between us of keeping the spending reasonable (for what is just a mobile phone game after all…), and strictly the same amount. So we end up spending 10 to 15 € per month on monthly VIP pass and on a couple of 1,09 € / 2,29 € offers for gems or 3* mats + gems.
This (I hope not too) long introduction was to underline the fact that, in the end, both our accounts offer pretty much the same characteristics.
So, after 5 months, this where we both are today:
1. Experience, building, map and raiding:
We are both at:
exp level 28
1 TC 18 and 2 TC 14
4 mines at level 18
8 farms (levels not exactly the same but between 15 to 17)
1 barracks level 3
2 forges (1 lvl 17 & 1 lvl 13)
2 houses at level 13
neither of us finished the map yet : I’m at province 21 stage 1, she’s at province 19 stage 4 ;
we are currently both raiding mainly in platinum arena but we are in this area where we occasionally drop to gold due to night attacks ;
my highest titan damage: 57251 / hers: 53434
Neither of us did a x 10 pull yet, so all our heroes come from epic or elemental single pulls (sometimes, of course, we did 7 or 8 in a row) or from TC 13 (sorry but we didn’t keep track of the exact numbers of summons or TC13 trainings)
My current roster:
Purple: Aeron (1/1) (bonus pull)
Blue (2): Grimm (4/70), Boril (1/30), Boril (1/30)
Green (1): Caedmon (4/70)
Red (5): Boldtusk (4/42), G. Falcon (3/60), Gormek (1/14), Colen (1/7), G. Falcon (1/1)
Purple (2): Rigard (4/70), Sabina (3/19)
Yellow (2): G. Jackal (4/70), Li Xiu (3/60)
Fully ascended 3* (15)
Blue (3): Graymane, Karil, Ulmer
Green (3): Carver, Belith, Friar Tuck
Purple (3): Oberon, Tyrum, Balthazar
Red (4): Nashgar, Jahangir, Azar, Hawkmoon
Yellow (2): Bane, Bane
Yellow: Delilah (3/1) (bonus pull)
Blue (2): Grimm (4/70), Sonia (3/60)
Red (5): Boldtusk (4/70), Scarlett (3/60), Colen (3/60), Kelile (2/7), Scarlett (1/1)
Purple (1): Cyprian (3/60)
Yellow (2): G. Jackal (4/70), Hu Tao (3/60)
Fully ascended 3* (15)
Blue (3): Graymane, Valen, Gunnar
Green (4): Isshtak, Brienne, Belith, Carver
Purple (4): Oberon, Prisca, Balthazar, Tyrum
Red (1): Hawkmoon, Nashgar
Yellow (2): Bane, Gan Ju
Regarding 4* troops, I have two (one blue, one purple) and so does she (1 red, 1 purple)
Some thoughts about our respective rosters:
raw figures may indicate that I’ve been luckier than she was on this area and in some way that is the case (I have 2 more 4* + I’m very close to a fully ascended rainbow 4* team when she failed to pull a single green 4* yet, and she’s saving mats in the hope for a better purple because lol… Cyprian) but I would like to point out the fact that she’s doing really fine with her current roster. In fact, she did better than me in the last event and she often struggles less than I do on the last levels of rare quests. For instance, in the last Frostmarch quest, despite my all 4* team, I had to “buy” my victory in the last level (with a 75 gems retry) when she finished it quite easily using Gunnar and his spirit link (+ 63% defense can be a tremendous help). It made me realize that a wisely used 3* can, in certain situations, be as, if not more, effective than a 4*, and therefore that this game is not just about accumulating powerful heroes but also knowing how/when to use them.
to contradict a bit my last sentence, we found that there were some “game changer” heroes that, once we get them, boosted our scores a lot: at 4* level, Boldtusk and Grimm, by providing the buff attack / debuff defense combo, were a great improvement in our teams (and there is of course Wu-Kong but neither of us pulled him yet)
as you can see, we are still very poor on 5* heroes but, for now, that doesn’t prevent us of enjoying the game. Our current goal is to reach TC 20 as soon as possible and we’ll rely on it, more than summons, to gradually improve our rosters.
3. Ascension materials:
I only have one month (we started tracking April 22th) of solid data to provide, but I think the side by side comparison still can be instructive. Here are the numbers:
Obviously, she’s been the lucky one there, and we can only note that it was the number of elemental chests (3 vs 1) that made the difference in the final outcome.
Of course this isn’t enough data to be conclusive in any way but I have to say that seeing that we got 20+ mats in this first month of tracking was rather reassuring for our future ability to ascend our heroes. We’ll keep tracking and we’ll see if it was just a lucky month…
But in the other hand, I’d also like to point out the fact that, in five months of play, none of us has gotten a single tome of tactics.
So, to summarize: After 5 months, with the same amount of time, dedication and money spent, we are today more or less at the same point and our rosters are roughly equivalent in strength, at least in the sense that they allow us to reach the same kind of results when facing the same kind of adversity. In any case, there is not one of us who is far ahead of the other.
Can we draw the conclusion that we’ve been equally lucky, or that luck is just not that much of a factor? Maybe it is still too early to tell and we are curious to see how things will evolve in the next months.
To add some more feedback on this already too long post, some miscellaneous thoughts:
we had and still have a lot of fun playing this game and I might add that the fact of starting a precise tracking of our rosters’ improvements, ascension materials, etc. has been an addition to the fun in the sense that it introduced a bit of a competition between us ;
I wasn’t much into mobile games prior to start playing E&P and I don’t have a lot of elements of comparison but I think this is a great game overall: the combination of puzzles, farming, fighting, ascending, maps, raids, titans, wars… all of this provides a rich and enjoyable gaming experience ;
regarding our heroes, I really can’t tell if we’ve been more or less lucky than average after five month. All I can say is that, for now, we are quite happy with what we’ve got. Are we sometime envious about 5* heroes or past HOTM we do not have? Sure, but the current state of our rosters does not prevent us in any case of enjoying the game. We do not have the ambition to reach the top of the ranking; just keep playing, progressing and having fun;
that said, I totally understand that some players could feel very frustrated with the game: waiting for months for one last ascension material needed to ascend a hero, spending a lot of money in summons only to get multiple 3* duplicates… I agree that it can be very frustrating and ruin the fun. Maybe not EVERYTHING in this game has to be so scarce and random;
there are two things that I dislike and they are correlated : in my opinion the prices for gems are too high for the value they bring because the odds are too low. This is of course subjective but I personally find that paying the equivalent of 30€ for a x 10 pull and not getting anything valuable for it is a terrible risk / reward, especially considering that the marginal cost of these virtual cards and items is close to zero. But what keeps me the most from spending more on summons is the lack of transparency surrounding those odds. I don’t mind to gamble from time to time but at least let me know what the odds are.
Raids: it’s seems they’ve been the subject of a lot of controversy, especially since the release of 1.12. I don’t want to add on the debate about food/iron reward nerf, that have been already largely covered, but I want to say this: I really like raids, I personally think they are the most thrilling aspect of the game (my wife prefers Titan hits) but they are too often similar to a Sisyphus’ task and it is very annoying. For those who didn’t see it yet, I’d like to point out this thread. Trophies & Permanence - a rewarding PvP system with more depth and climb incentives idea (even without extra loot) It is a very well and deeply thought idea and I think its implementation could be a huge improvement for the game, I encourage everybody to vote for it.
Finally, we would like to thank the 7DD gang. These guys are sometimes unfairly criticized while they are not stingy with their time and energy providing so much helpful content to the community. It helped us a ton and made us avoid a lot of mistakes in the beginning. We particularly recommend watching Anchor’s videos and streams from which we learnt a lot.
That’s it. Thanks for reading
English is not my first language so I hope I have been able to express myself clearly enough and I apologize in advance for any gross mispelling