They're kind of interesting in that you have to tweak your stuff, then click the button and get a Yes/No result. More like a game of Mastermind than anything. Just that instead of playing a game turn based guessing/estimation game, you're playing an actual AP-costing and fully invested game with far less rewards given than requires to beat it.
So true. And part of the reason why I said, don't spend AP to beat challenges. If they happen to be beatable with your current set of advancements, take the additional AP, otherwise don't bother.
It would be more interesting, perhaps even useful, if the advancements required to beat these levels were actually useful in WZI main ... but for the most part they're not.
I don't know yet, I haven't beaten the second challenge, but I assume that some of the early challenges will be beatable with Increased Army Camp Production, Auto-Conquer and Auto-Upgrade Army Camp alone. IACP is generally a useful advancement, whether you want to use the Auto-stuff or not depends on your style of playing, but at least those two Auto-Advancements aren't that bad. There are some convenience advancements like the Statistics or the visibilities that will never help with challenges and I doubt that the ore related advancements will be crucial at any point. But we will see, what the challenges require.
But I agree that I find the "No"-message rather disappointing. If a failed challenge would tell you, "Hey, you know, Auto-Upgrade Army Camp increases your army income over time." such that the challenges would be some (crazy) kind of tutorial or so. Solve one challenge, fail at the next, get told which advancement you should upgrade next, then jump back to step 1 (solving), and so on. Then, I'd know what I did wrong and why I attempt the challenges.
They dont need a redesign, just need bigger rewards.
Bigger isn't always the solution. Especially if they reward you with more than you needed to have to beat it. Then, it would become a luck based gamble: Have the right set of advancements, earn a big pile of AP. Don't have the right set, spend even more.
PS: And I believe the challenges should unlock with specific milestones (=WZI levels) such that you aren't tempted to try every single challenge only because they are available when you can't possibly beat them at this point.
Edited 4/20/2021 17:21:24