One small issue I’ve had with Phoenix Point in the back of my mind since the release of the game, is how the Phoenix Project research texts often mention the Phoenix Project as having scientists, engineers and medical personnel, but we never see them specifically included in the game mechanics, only sometimes shown in the game’s cutscenes like in the Legacy of the Ancients DLC screenshot below.
It is as if they somehow exist purely in the background, but they never eat food resource, never take up living quarters space and we never know how many of them there really are at any one time. It makes it seem as if the Phoenix Project’s field operatives, amounting to only a few dozen people in the course of a Phoenix Point campaign, are literally the only Phoenix Project personnel shown to physically exist in the game’s world.
I remember coming across a reason for this, in the Phoenix Point Discord chat a long time ago. The developers did originally plan to include non-combat Phoenix Project personnel like scientists and engineers in the game’s mechanics, but it ended up bogging down the game in too much boring minutiae and busywork from all the extra personnel management. So they were cut from the game late in development, and the changes explained by having the Phoenix Project rely on automated bases managed by AI’s. I’m assuming that physical tasks like construction and maintenance of base facilities would have to be handled by robots (that have never been shown) controlled by the base AI’s.
To me, the lack of any non-combat base personnel shown to exist in Project Project bases always makes the bases feel so cold and empty, when activated Phoenix Project bases full of base facilities should feel like they’re hives of activity filled with all kinds of support staff doing their part to help save the human race. If Snapshot Games could figure out a way to streamline and reintegrate the non-combat base personnel system that they originally planned to include in the game, I would much appreciate its inclusion.
What are your thoughts on this? Worth including back into the game in a streamlined form, or would it still just result in too much extra complexity and micromanagement?
Yes, that is something I am very much missing from PP. it feels like bases are pit stops, rather then havens to protect.
I don’t have a solution though. As far as geoscape management, I would prefer if they address inventory teleport first. Even as it is, PP can be a bit tedious at times so throwing yet another thing just for the sake for it might not be a good thing.
As it is, managing PP doesn’t feel like managing an organisation though.
The main reason why I’d want non-combat base personnel included in the game is to increase the sense of player immersion in the game’s setting, to make just a bit more believable (and suspend slightly less disbelief) that I’m commanding an international scientific and planetary defence organisation full of people that have different roles and skills, working together to help save humanity.
From the descriptions given in the Haven Recruitment Protocols research, the lore in some of the short stories, as well as all the different exploration/haven Point of Interest events encountered in the game, the Phoenix Project’s operatives aren’t just combatants. They seem to be more like field agents that each possess different scientific, technical and investigative skills, but who had originally treated combat as only a secondary or tertiary part of their role before the events of the game. Only because of the events of the game and the necessity of having to fight Pandorans directly do they begin placing equal or greater emphasis on developing their combat skills so that they essentially become soldier/scholar hybrids. But even they can’t possibly do everything themselves.
The Phoenix Project would still need to have its own specialised scientists, engineers and miscellaneous support staff, in order to keep its bases running and provide logistics and intel to field operatives, even with all the automated assistance from base AI’s. Having some sort of acknowledgement in the base management UI that they actually exist and are contributing to running the bases, while requiring food and living quarters like your operatives do, would be enough to show that they exist in the game in a believable way. The trick would be implementing non-combat base personnel in such a way that they only require minimal and occasional input and management from the player, while properly portraying their addition to the game as being useful and beneficial to the player experience, instead of their addition coming across as annoying and detrimental to the player experience of the game.
Yeah I just finished re-playing XCom: Apocalypse (turn based!!) with the whole hire/fire someone for a whole skill point every day
It felt strategic, certainly up until you broke the economy, which might be one of the reasons why it was canned for what it is now. There is value in cosmetics though.
It would be interesting to have a way to augment research and manufacture through hiring personnel. I’d like to be able to “rent” manufacturing effort from the factions, but then have to go fetch my stuff, or send out my base personnel to work at a faction base if I didn’t have the local facilities.
I still do not like the “instant production” and “any item equippable anywhere in the world” mechanics though. Empty magazines don’t vanish and medikits don’t desintegrate …that we know of