I backed PP a long time ago on one of the highest levels, because the original X-Com from Mr. Gollop with its “simulation” approach is my favorite game (I did not like the new XCOM from Firaxis at all, because it is basically just a rather simple “board-game” with shiny graphics).
Here is my final request for PP:
Please give us more options!
Especially options to turn off:
Visibility of enemy health points (on/off).
Visibility of enemy “body part” details (on/off).
Messages for enemy actions ( like “deploy shield”, “end turn”, “overwatch”) on/off - these are big immersion breakers!
Preview lines of visible enemies after movement to a point on/off. (If you move in real life, you have to anticipate what you may see at this point - you do not know that before moving! This is what makes tactical movement interesting!)
Options like this would put the “Fear of the Unknown” back into Phoenix Point! This aspect (it was an early tagline for PP) is not present at the moment:
Knowing exactly how much armor and health points a creature has, completely destroys the “horror” atmosphere.
At the moment the player can even see how much points a bleeding creature loses every turn. Even the biggest monstrosity loses its terrifying effect, if you know every detail about it - and it’s body parts!
The best solution would be, to hide all this information (like it was in the old X-Coms); if you attack a creature you have to deal with it, as if you were in a real fight: Shoot at it until it goes down or flees.
What made the original X-Com so great, was that there was almost no hand-holding:
As a player you will learn how to act correctly; if you shoot hundreds of normal bullets at a heavy armored body part without any effect you have to adapt your tactics and perhaps use armor-piercing ammunition or target a not protected body part. The graphics of PP are good enough to communicate what parts seem to be vulnerable. You can even see graphically if a body part is destroyed or bleeding.
At least make some kind of “hardcore” or “realistic” mode were all the info is hidden or give us some adjustable settings in the options. This way the game would get a real “horror” atmosphere like X-Com and TFTD.
The creature design of PP is absolutly great - but all this is for nothing at the moment, because the enemies are just quantities of different health points (and status messages) for the players. As a player I want to immerse myself and fight the “creatures”, not “spread sheets” like it is at the moment.
The original X-Com from Mr. Gollop made the right decisions in so many aspects. I cannot understand why it is so hard for the successors of the original to see this and build upon it.
Please put options (like the ones I mentioned) in the game - it is not much work, these are just on/off options for the UI, but they would make the game a lot more immersive and atmospheric!
Thank you very much!