I know that symbols and templates are terms already used in Illustrator for different purposes; but what I am looking for is something that could help me avoid drawing the same objects multiple times.
For example if was doing a icon set as a sprite in a single document and each icon had the same background, I would like to be able to draw that background once and use it for all the icons in the set. I know that I can do this by copying and pasting but then if I need to change the background I have to duplicate the change for each icon, which I suppose could be hundreds in the case of some icon sets so I'm assuming there's some way of avoiding this and making one change which would affect all - much like the way a global swatch works in colour but with an object instead of a swatch. Is there anything like this?
I know I suppose I could use the symbol sprayer and or graphic styles and I did have a look at them but the symbol sprayer doesn't seem very accurate seems to be more for fills and art that something like designing an icon set; and the graphic styles seemed to be more geared up towards styles not much use for paths from what I could see.