[Feedback] Notes from a pacifist run

// Disclaimer : This is probably not the way the game was intended to be played or enjoyed.

After a couple of unfinished games (about 20 to 50h I guess) to get a feel of Phoenix Point and learn how to play it, I’ve noticed that PP was a little too repetitive / too long / too difficult for me. So I’ve decided to play it differently, simply by “ignoring” both the scavenging and the factions’ missions.

So I mostly spent my time in the geoscape as you guess, moving from events to havens; sometimes ambushed by pandorians; at first with one plane and then two with elite soldiers & vehicles… and it was quite enjoyable, with fewer but more “high stakes” missions!

It happened that I had to follow the main Symes storyline up to the origin of pandora virus (no spoilers). But I got stuck in the storyline / research progress so I wondered if I had to actually do the factions missions… Both Jericho and Synedrion havens were still intacts, but I never managed to get my hand on the Anu one - so stuck again. And I also never had any “nest” or “lair” mission…

I wonder if this is a design intent that the player must do as soon as possible each faction’s first mission then special mission in order to get things “as planned”, because in this run, there is nothing left available after Pandoran have decimated most of the havens… In that case, maybe the designers have to find a way to make sure that the player “stays on track” :wink:

Otherwise some potentials improvements :
// Geoscape

  • there should be a way to display the area scan without having to select the current place location (especially if the plane is at the other side of the planet); maybe moving the mouse over the Scan button can display the current scan coverage;

// Base

  • while in the Base interface, there should be a way to display the current personel / vehicles, so you can quickly cycle through bases to check them, instead of going back to personnel and scrolling down to see who’s where…

// Soldiers

  • soldiers in the plane should acquire “some” XP from exploration (aside fighting pandorians), otherwise it would create a situation were soldiers “left” in bases will get super high levels by training, whereas brave scouting soldiers would get absolutely nothing from basically revealing all the map and confronting all the events :slight_smile:

So, since I’m stuck, I’ll probably try a new run and make sure I do all the factions’ missions “as intended” and see what happens.

Iam missing the content in your post (currently i only See the “disclaimer”. Not More)

Yep, sorry, I mis-typed “Enter” too soon :wink:

Why did you get stucked? I just played 25hrs so in dont know the Storyline but the Main PP Storyline should go on or not?

Well, that’s part of my point: by “minding my own business” and focusing on the Symes’ missions (apparently the main storyline) and ignoring the other missions (factions, scavenging, etc), I can get to the point where I learn about the origin of pandora virus with the bare minimum operations (plus ambushes), but get stuck and also never received the first “destroy pandorian nest” mission…

There is a huge section of research that never gets available by sticking to Symes’ storyline so I wonder if the factions’ missions are de facto mandatory to progress in the game… so maybe it would be a good idea to make sure the player actually does these missions - or make sure that the research will open at a certain point in the game whatever the situation…

(Also, there are enough resources in the world to insure you can recruit & build what you need even if you don’t do any factions’ or scavenging missions).

It’s pretty expected that you’ll do certain things in the game. Of these defending havens against Pandoran attack is probably the most important. If you don’t defend havens you’ll almost certainly never see lair missions so won’t get the related research which leads to the ability later to find lairs through area scans. There’s also other faction tech that I think is critical to progressing that there’s no way you could get through “pacifist” means.

To end the game you have to do researches that only trigger when getting rid of nests and the top level of it.
So you are forced to at least defend three haven and take on the following nest missions.
Here is the associated research tree (spoilers obviously):

  • doing Antartica mission -> new research: Yuggothian Entity
  • Destroy Nest -> new research: Pandoran Colonies
    • Destroy Lair -> new research: Pandoran Lair
      • Kill Queen -> new research: Pandoran Citadel (can now scan for nests, lairs & citadels)

Both are needed to have a new research: Yuggothian Receptacle
followed by Virophage Injector that locks you into END GAME FOR PHOENIX PROJECT

I may miss some dependencies since it really depends in which order you do the researches. But you shouldn’t need to be well with the factions … but it makes the game more difficult to stick to PP weapons only.

Thanks @Vipre and @pantolomin for pointing out the mandatory 3 havens defence missions and their link to the nest / lair missions ; I’ll try to adjust accordingly for the next run :+1:

Isn’t the Area Scan range extending tech from one of the factions a requirement to even access Antarctica? You might not need to be on good terms but you’d need to steal it at least right?

Very interesting. I think this is an oversight and a play through like this should absolutely be possible given you can still gather enough resources to defend your bases/do the story line and last mission. Doesn’t some research give area scans the ability to detect lairs ? Could be tied to a faction though that would suck for your scenario.

Yes but to get it requires you attacking lairs and that requires you to defend havens to uncover them.

You might be able to uncover them by only defending your own bases but I don’t know how reliable a strategy that is.

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Not sure. In my first game I had all the locations uncovered (was a bug). In my second, I managed to go there without it I think. But someone on the forum couldn’t and had to steal it.

You can do it if you have at least one scan available.

There’s a scan button at bottom to the left, click on it and you have what you want.

First point, my current play is pacifist too, but not autistic like OP. :slight_smile:

Not adhere to warlike tendencies of factions doesn’t mean not improve relationship with them. At least up to 50% for two factions, and 75% for one.

For their wars and a pacifist run, just stop all Haven assaults, and they’ll get discouraged. The only price is global deterioration of reltionships, that is lost more relationship than win relationship, but it’s manageable with lairs and citadels destruction. During wars even defense against alien is global lost of relationship.

And then about the PP ends, there’s perhaps a bug, and there’s clearly one if you did all main missions and main captures and main research, and have nothing left and still no PP end.

For factions tech, steal them is not much a pacific run, and currently it’s an OP hole/exploit alas. But again increase relationsips match a pacifist run and will target a lot of the problem.

For an autistic run (which clearly makes sense too with game context how it is written), it’s a lot harder because of lacking of factions tools:

  • i think it’s manageable only at Normal and even more Easy difficulty allowing recruit soldiers with equipments. About that a tip, look for higher prices for tech and material, this give the best equipments. And then retro engineering research will allow acquire many faction tech. Still you’ll miss many and this will make a play quite harder.
  • Another trick but no way it will solve fully the problem coming from an autistic run, is to put in priority items containers in Haven defense missions, and put in priority items drop pick.
  • But for armors and extensions you are dependent of relationships with factions or recruits. For other tech it’s dead without relationships.

An autistic run looks more like a good challenge, than a good first play choice. I’d suggest consider a more pacifist option:

  • Consider a pacifist won’t reject relationships improvement and some help to a faction borderline nasty.
  • Synedrion is the pacifist faction from a lore point of view, the only contradiction is they seem start wars easily, but you don’t know, they could be manipulated. So at worse you can consider help Synedrion up to not going aggressive with other factions, and still stick into a pacifist mood.

Two campaigns, both times Synedrion was the instigator.

Yeah me too, but if you forget it, they are very pacifist up to 75+

This detail makes even less sense that, for me, in both cases they was weakling, and would have been wipe out quickly without my help, sigh.