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Feb 1, 2022
Hiya there. Returning player here back to mess around with the game a bit more following the 'recent' Supply Lines patch & Make It Count stuff.

So expect a whole bunch of 'noob' questions as i get to grips with things again.

The first of which is:
What does changing difficulty between Assosiate and Boss actually affect?

I've noticed the effect on starting cash, and i think Thugs have more HP at higher difficulties.

I'm not sure what else it affects tho. Does it affect what sort of guards spawn in NPC rackets? How many guards/thugs spawn? What about equipment/loot? NPC boss resources/behaviour?

I ask because my playstyle is mostly all about the gangsters and getting into fights. If Boss mode gets me bigger better fights and cooler toys then i'm interested. If the difference is mostly/entirely how strong a start you get then i'm quite happy to go Assosiate and start with a gang of hardened criminals on day 1.
It might be my imagination, but it seems to me that there are a lot more Doctors on enemy squads at the higher levels. Which can make combats where you're outnumbered (like guard vs. guard street fights) especially tough, as they can heal faster than you can damage them.

Luckily I have NOT noticed more Demolitionists.

Some bosses start the game already in control of multiple precincts, which I don't think occurs at lower levels.