[color:"orange"]Did you read my post about the different difficulty settings and how that might be a solution ?[/color]

Yes, but I don't like the idea of connecting the difficulty setting to "active combat". If I don't want a system that requires clicks for every block, quick or mighty blow, this doesn't mean I want easy fights. Perhaps an "active combat" option (in addition to the difficulty setting) would be a solution. If it's set to "off", the character continues to fight and block automatically after combat is initiated, just special skills are triggered by pressing a key or clicking. When set to "on", you control every swing, slash, block and stab of your character. But it doesn't mean enemies have more or less hit points, better or worse fighting stats etc.

[color:"orange"]I suggested to get customizable combos so you could put the skills on the numeric or function keys and I could activate them with mouseclicks.
Would this really be such a bad idea ? Put the difficulty setting on easy and only the harder enemys might require you to use these skills, put it on hard and you should use them often.[/color]

Having to use "active combat" just against hard enemies would be a bad idea, since players who don't train "active combat" against weaker enemies would quite likely face problems using it against hard enemies - compared to those who always use it and are well-trained in using it. If people don't like the "active combat" system, it shouldn't be forced on them, not even in a few fights.

[color:"orange"]I like the idea of proficiency (based on the number of times it has been cast).[/color]

I've not seen a game where this idea was implemented in a balanced and interesting way. It usually rewards those who are willing to either train without any enemy being present or to use overpowered spells on weak enemies for training purposes - which, by the way, is especially strange in the case of priestly characters; invoking godly might for training purposes seems like an abuse of this power to me. More often than not, a proficiency system encourages needless repetition. I can imagine a proficiency system that only counts using a spell or skill if it has been activated in a useful way (e.g. in a fight against enemies of equal or higher level), but I guess this would be difficult to implement, especially for the non-combat spells and skills.

[color:"orange"]Hold the button to charge the spell and release to cast it. You can release the button early to cast the spell at a lower level. Each level exponentially increases the mana cost and effect of the spell.[/color]

I like the idea of connecting casting times, mana, damage and radius to the time a key or button has been pressed. But if there are 10 fireball levels, how many levels are there going to be for non-combat spells? In Divine Divinity, having 5 levels of Wizard's Sight is a waste of skill points compared to having 5 levels of a combat spell. If Larian can't think of a good way to increase a spell's effects, that spell should simply have a lower maximum level or even just one level. Another example is Fade from Sight: Having level 5 is only useful if you stay invisible for some time; if you just want to turn invisible for a second or two during combat, you're better off having level 1. In a system with 10 fireball levels, any invisibility spell should have several levels as well, so it can't be mastered spending just 1 skill point, but that means the effects should somehow become better, apart from a lower mana consumption rate.