I like this change. Upgrade stones weren't really suitable, to upgrade the spells the game asks you to grind a little bit, so also having to grind for upgrading the player wasn't really nice.
In any case, if I can add my 5 cents, I would like to talk about immersion.
I mean, that's the only thing the game, at least now, lacks.
In AI war I could feel the immersion as soon as I started the game, only one planet, the graphic concept as dark and grim, surrounded by enemies, the sad music and the occasional AI terminal comment.
Here I can't feel the immersion. The story seems non-existant in game and everything feels so gamey.
I mean in Diablo 2, for example, every object I gathered was a success, as I saw, little by little, objects becoming more epic, slowly managing to create better runes and gems, I felt some kind of reward in satisfying the basic need of getting the character "Numbers"
bigger and bigger.
Also here the concept is getting the numbers bigger with enchants, by to me they feel so impersonal and gamey. I mean, what are "Enchants", they are not even explained in the game. There is no explanation why I have to use these kinds of empowering objects, instead of a sword, or a gun. Also magic is not explained, everything feels to me as thrown into a big soup that doesn't really make any sense. I'm not saying that a game should be conventional in its nature, but it should explain, justify, the setting and the gameplay in someway.
So, I agree with enchants, if they were to be justified, explained in some way, as for now you just jump around, find containers that no-one knows why it's there and what's its purpose, and pam, after the counter goes to 100% (which I find indelicate to the immersion, really).
But why not implementing an equipment system, like swords, and armours that you can craft or collect by killing powerful monsters, or achieving epic objectives, or just exploring randomly some special locations, that would really improve the exploration aspect, as for now I feel, "Damn, I finished iron stuffs, I have to "explore" , again, to get some more". They don't have to show on the sprites, but there could be a deep equipment management that could make people more :
1) Pushed to explore;
2)Make quests that could be implemented to get new powerful items or material to craft them, and I mean quests in the conventional way, like collecting some wood, or killing some enemies as an extra to the "Mission system".
3)Make villages more important as there could be people who can help you with item, sell stuff, buy stuff from you in exchange of shards, and stuff like that.
4)Make NPC more important, as they could be scripted as a way to start quest and complete them.
5)Give more randomization to the game, more longevity with randomization, and something that can distract the player from the main game.
6)Specialization of characters could impact the acessibility the have to different kind of equipments, a man with no health enchants, should be restricted from using heavy armors.
7)Making players feel more attached to the character in game.
I feel that to make the game better it should be felt as more organic. Now I don't feel it's organic, I feel it's gamey and arcade for some aspects. More immersion, more rationalization of the gameplay components for me should be a priority, no?
Anyway, go to study. Ciao ciao!
(I would signature myself as "A shadow who appears sometime and brings bad luck" as it's been at least a couple of year, if not more, that I'm stalking the forums without writing more than a couple of messages. Anyway, "Absence of proof is not proof of absence" no?)