I am the only one that feels that any aura that does not include an MA/MD buff is extremely weak? Or viceversa, that MA and MD auras are too powerful?
I am going to examine auras only, but this applies to almost every buff...
MA and MD auras
Assuming a basic chance to hit of 35%, a 5 MA increase for the attacking unit means a dps increase of 15%. Similarly, a MD increase of 5 means a dps decrease of 15%. Obviously, due to how the chance to hit works in this game, this is a simplification. For example, if a lord with 50 MA and 50 MD attacks empire swordmen, (32 MA and 32 MD), a 5 MA increase to unit X means "only" a 9% dps increase. While a MD increase of 5 to unit X means the empire swordmen dps is reduced by 30%. And, on reverse, increasing the MA of swordmen in that situation would give them a huge dps increase, while increasing their MD would have a very small efect. But, on average, a 5 MA and 5 MD means a 15% dps difference.
The standard 70 gold aura buys you a 15% dps increase in a 30 meter aura, while every time the price it is increased by one range, it "doubles" (fom 5 to 9) that amount.
Typically, MA and MD auras are priced like this:
+5 MA/Md (30 meters) costs 70 gold (DE princesss, tree lords and heroes)
+9 MA/MD (BLOBB) cost around 165 (40 meters) (probably should be more expensive due to the extra range).
+ 5 MA and 5MD (30 Meters) for 160 (Khalida).
+5 MA and MD, 55 meter range (Settra) (240 gold)
The advantages of MA auras also come from those being not very situational (they work as long as the buffed unit is in melee) and easy to use (just charge your lord/hero and the unit you want to buff into melee).
They can also become obnoxiously powerful in melee blobs, specially if stacked.
In order to get an aura that actually increases ranged dps by 10%, you have to pay twice the amount than what melees pay for a 15% increase. And i am not even sure if this auras actually buff explosive damage.
+10% non ap damage only, 30 meters, 78 gold (Eye of Kurnous, Glady and Waystalker). Taking into account their ap ratios, the actual increase for the lords and heroes is of about 7%, while the increase to some of their troops range from 8% (normal archers) to a measly 1% (starfire shafts). The actual dps increase is even lower due to armour.
+ 10 recharge speed, 40 meters. 80 gold. HE princess. If 10 recharge speed means firing 10% faster, it would be almost similar to the effects of the MA buffs. However, in practice, that's not exactly true, as this does not increase the potential damage of the unit, as it does not increase ammunition.
+ 10 recharge speed, 40 meters, 82 gold. Handmaiden.
+ 10% missile damage (both AP an non AP), Vampire Coast, 30 meters. 162 gold.
The only "decent" ranged aura is Khalida's blessing of Asaph, which for 155 gold gives 15% recharge speed, plus 15% extra ranged damage (both ap and non ap damage). It's basically the only aura that gives a buff as effective as the MD or MA ones... but it is applied on a unit that does not even have a ranged attack. Meaning its useless except for very specific builds.
This buffs are also very situational. Typically, you dont want to blob ranged units, and some ranged units (for example, those with different ranges, or 360º shooting, or different speeds, etc. tend to naturally separate from each other.
Weapon damage auras
There are not many of this. However, there are some examples:
- 8 WD aura (waystalker) - 70 gold, in a 30 meter area. A minus 8% dps decrease, but only for non ap damage. Again, 1/3 the effect of a MA aura, for the same price.
+8 WD aura (warrior priest). 70 gold, 30 meter aura. This one is tricky, though, as it also gives fire damage, so i can see how this one may be considered balanced.
Charge bonus auras.
This are probably the **** ones.
Typically, CB areas are balanced around them giving a 8% bonus for 70 gold.
Not only is the effect poor. I mean, grail knights, one of the units that would benefit more from such a buff, ony get an extra 6,2 CB... That is, aproximately, 10 % extra damage during the first attack of the charge. But the effect is reduced as the charge bonus disappears, so in practice, that's more of a 5% or 6% dps bonus, that only works while charging.
However, not only is the effect negligible. It is also extremely situational. I mean, in order for it to work perfectly, you need to be near a unit with an actual charge bonus. Your grail knights engage and 7 seconds later Alberic reaches them? half of the bonus is wasted. You are using Alberic on foot? The effects of his bonus on the to the Bretonnian infantry with the highest CB (squires) is of about 1,76 extra CB, and they can't cycle charge. SEMs? again, a joke. For a SEM with 50 MA, 50 MD and 400 ws, the extra CB means basically 0. Chance to hit is capped at 90, meaning the CB buff won't increase your chance to hit a lot of times. While extra weapon damage during the charge, when your hits deal 400 damage, is a ridiculous 1% increase.
They increase/decrease armour by about 7 points for 70 gold. Their actual effect is determined by the amount of armour the objective has before the aura, and the ap ratio of the attacking unit. But in basic terms, 7 armour means 4,9% non ap damage reduction. Even while using it in a unit with relatively high armour, while being attacked by a unit with low ap ratio (25%), the actual dps change is only about a measly 8%. Yeah, armour has the advantage of working on ranged attacks too, but this effect is much smaller when used in units with lower armour ratios, or in units attacked by enemies with high ap ratios. So it's just as situational as an MA/MD aura while being numerically inferior.
MA and MD auras have an average 15% effect on melee dps while being super easy to use. Similar buffs to other stats are balanced around a lower numerical effectivity, plus are typically MUCH more difficult ot use. This needs a generalized balance pass, that imho, would do wonders in terms of actually balancing a lot of lords and heroes.