So, I've almost all of my time since purchasing this game, buried in the game, experimenting with mechanics, building a village, and generally falling in love with the game. The mechanics are solid, the gameplay is difficult, but still feels fair- the threats are just varied enough to still be exciting, just predictable enough so that you feel like when you screw up, it was probably because you did something wrong. However, having gotten late-game in one of my villages, I've run into a bit of an issue- Mana.
It's an interesting duality here. I'm constantly maxed out in terms of mana storage- I've devoted all my ancillaries' build caps to making essence pools- but I'm constantly maxing it out. Might have something to do with my wall of Cullis gates, and how I drop any enemies that dare approach my village into them? But other than my internal towers, a massive golem foundry, and some crystal motivators to go with it... There's not much for me to spend the Essence on, except for the occasional earthquake, or motivate land. Or swarm of meteors.
I have a solution for this issue- but I think it might be a bit hard to implement. Not sure, though, I'm only just starting with coding courses. But, that solution is: Automation.
Now, I'm not sure how well that would fit with the theme of the game, but I was thinking that there could be some basic essence-powered automation in the game. I've tried setting up a "conveyor" of sorts, made out of Attract towers, but it always ends up derping out on me- so why not add in an actual conveyor system? Make an input and an output- portals, maybe, that use a decent amount of essence per item transported, but it's instant- or maybe actual conveyors, where you could drop an item onto it at any point, and it'd drop it off somewhere else, where you pour Essence into a central "hub" building that powers all connected conveyors? Not sure.
Or perhaps, maybe something like the Holy Golems, or golem combobulators that make golems specifically for certain jobs around the town- mining, harvesting crystal, forestry... General low-skill jobs, to free up your villagers for other things? I'd imagine that they'd be more expensive than your average crystal golem, and might only last a certain amount of time before you have to create a new one- but it would be a good boost to the economy.
My final idea, though, might be the main one I had in mind. Instead of automating resource gathering, what about resource processing? Automated stone-cutteries, lumber-mills, crystilleries, forges, things like that- where, instead of using manpower, they use essence for every item processed?
Like I said, not sure how hard this would be to implement, or even if it would fit into the theme of the game, but... growing up from an absolutely basic camp, to a sprawling city, to a magepunk paradise where none of the citizens need do anything more than lift a finger to have any and all needs taken care of by an army of shiny golems... Sounds like a dream. Not to mention the difficulties that would come from all your villagers having no work to do, and therefore lazing about and sucking up resources for no real benefit to the town except happiness increasing..