Heroes are playable characters capable of commanding armies. They develop their abilities by gaining levels in battles.
Every hero has a set of skills and an inventory where he or she stores items and resources. The amount of heroes in your retinue is limited by your Hero Karma.
Heroes command units of a single type, such as Archers or Pikemen. Units cannot move about on their own. It is impossible to wage war efficiently with a lone hero. The more heroes you have, the greater the range of tactical decisions at your avail. For instance, one hero may be a spell caster, the second a spy and a scout, the third an archer and the fourth the archer's heavily armoured guardian.
Even though heroes can deal damage and move without an army, their real power lies in the units under their control. The hero shares combat abilities with the soldiers. Everything that affects the hero, such as artefacts or spells, also affects the soldiers. The number of soldiers under the command of a hero is limited by his Leadership skill.