First, I have to start by saying that when it comes to the geoscape, I much prefer the original design from the crowdfunding campaign. Even the concept from the 30th August 2017 blog post looks better. The current one is a little too dark and smudgy and the exploration site icons don’t blend nicely. Also the textures and icons either seem too low resolution or are stretched too much, as they look quite bad at default size and absolutely awful when zooming in. I’m playing with a 1440p resolution and graphics set to fantastic.
Exploration Sites & Havens:
When starting a new game, there seem to be too many sites available in the starting area (I assume this is for testing purposes). Even so, there’s too many randomly generated havens with no interaction or events attached to them and too few combat sites. Also, the currently implemented events feel dull, and the background images are so damn pale looking that it removes even the interest of reading whats below them.
In my opinion, havens should be very rare, so that you have an interest in trying to play nice with all those you find so you can get access to their resources. Exploration sites should try to provide interesting discoveries, meaningful choices, or point you towards other events and sites, each with their own little story, rather than a simple: here’s 20 materials/food and an extra soldier.
Fixed Cities and Landmarks:
Another issue I dislike in the current geoscape implementation is the complete randomness of the created sites. There’s no connection, apart from the continent layout, that we’re on Earth. We might as well be on some random planet in another dimension. I would really like to have (in addition to the random locations and havens) some fixed known landmarks, large cities and capitals in ruins like London, Paris, New York. Hell, you could even give access to a file that people can edit to add their own landmarks, with geographical coordinates, to the geoscape. I’m not asking for complete missions inside these locations, since I understand there’s no time and resources available to add extra tile sets, but at least attach them to the general events lists. It would be quite interesting to travel around the map and find your home town or some other area you know from real life and have the game generate some kind of haven, scavenge site, or other event. You can even consider that many havens can evolve on the outskirts of the current large cities (the first synedrion haven was near Athens in one of the stories, right?)
Unless there is a point in returning to cleared mission sites, please remove them from the geoscape. Or add some filters: hide cleared sites, hide havens, bases, show only enemy sites etc.