Character Portraits on the Tactical Layer

This is something that I think is important. The new internal build has portraits on the tactical layer that several members of the Discord didn’t like (see UV’s video on the Phoenix Point channel). I really think portraits are something that is critical to establishing a connection between the player and the “soldiers”. I’m big in the RP elements of games like this - that what makes them matter, not just numbers, not just polygons, but little characters I wield.

Some of them become more meaningful than others. In my XCOM 2 playthroughs, I have key soldiers who become part of my narrative (I make them part of it) and it’s hard to let them die - it’s really hard - I might even save scum if Donald Neill dies. During my time with the early backer builds, I really connected with the characters (e.g. Stoller and Thompson) because of their portraits and their lore. And, I will mentally create lore for characters in a standard playthrough, doing Allen’s job. All for free and all for me.

Here is the portrait from the concept art that I think strikes the appropriate tone:


I’m a hobby user of 3d rendering software, so niether an expert nor a moron. I believe that such a portrait could be replicated using an image of my custom character taken with an in engine lens. This info box has everything I need to see but I’d rather have my abilities as they currently are on the bottom of the screen.

I appreciate any constructive feedback and that the developers continue to work on this.


And even what was in BB3 was pretty good:


3D or 2D, doesn’t matter, they just should exist. To not clutter screen too much there should be a button to hide/unreveal soldier stats (with portraits) on will.