Long term damage to soldiers

At the moment generally with Phoenix Point it doesn’t overly feel as if the Lovecraftian horror aspects of the game has a great deal of impact.

One of the reasons for this is that our forces are quickly and easily progressing to a point where they feel superhuman, so what if through time they also became a little bit more fragile?

You could have damage which causes a drop in the base stats for a solider. For example

  • Panic during a missions leads to a permanent reduction in willpower
  • Damage to arms leads to a long term reduction in strength
  • A damaged leg leads to a reduction in mobility

You could also introduce the possibility of permanent negative perks.

  • Soldier A has spent too long in the gym, he has a random change to flee from the enemy.
  • Soldier B was attacked by a face hugger, whilst it was removed and they look okay, there’s a chance over the next x amount of time that they might mutate into a Pandorian.
  • Soldier C has experienced too much panic, they now have a chance disobey orders on overwatch/reaction fire.

(Those are just by way of examples, I’m sure that balance would need to be considered and that there could be many more.)

That is a >terrible< idea. It seems you are trying way too hard to work in realism and RPG elements into this game.

First and foremost, this sort of system works best in games where you aren’t limited with the number of soldiers you get. In PP, you just can’t refresh your roster fast enough to deal with something like this. In the old X-COM games where you could just outright BUY an entire platoon of soldiers, sure. Even in the Firaxis XCOM games you get fresh recruits fast enough (and they even have a version of this I believe introduced in WotC).

This isn’t FTL, this isn’t a Rogue-like/lite, this isn’t Dark Souls-like/lite. Or even Darkest Dungeon for that matter. The game is already difficult enough (arguably speaking) as it is, we don’t need our soldiers having a bad mission where the entire squad ends up doing something stupid and suddenly our grizzled veterans are all gone. If my vets die, I want them to die because >I< did something stupid, not something out of my control.

Also, the ‘face huggers’ don’t mutate their targets. They mind control them. I can maybe see that causing some psychological damage, but mutating them? Hardly.


I actually had Battle Brothers and Blood Bowl in mind.

It’s all subjective at the end of the day. You don’t want a game where your whole squad can be wiped out, I don’t want a game where my whole squad is indispensable.

It’s easy enough to balance too, as you say yourself, at the moment recruits are so expensive that you don’t want to lose your whole squad. So make new recruits cheaper, and don’t limit the amount you can get.

Yes, but what else are they doing whilst performing that mind control? :wink:

Rather than permanent effects, temporary ones that require the soldier to be taken out of rotation for a period for recovery would be pretty interesting.

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The game is already VERY limited in man power! I don’t see ANY benefits in making it more harder and less functional than it is, already you get vastly outnumbered and it is way out of balance on this front already, which I think they are working to fix, but just NO we don’t need this kind of complications! Sorry!

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The backer build is limited in terms of man power, the final game doesn’t necessarily need to be. As you say, the BB5 is already out of balance in this respect, but making soldiers cheaper and more abundant will, as it stands, quickly lead to a situation where we all have super powered squads of indispensable soldiers, and little incentive to ever recruit new ones.

(What people will potentially end up doing is to save scum whenever they lose a solider because the cost will be so high)

Bringing in long term damage to soldiers would reduce the relative cost of one soldier being lost, give an incentive to recruit new squad members, and overall lead to more rotation and fluidity among troops.

Balance of one feature, does not need to be independent of all others. So yes, it would require more new soldiers to be available to recruit and/or at lower cost.

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I dont agree on forcint too much rotation.
One of the things i like more is growing up you squad and getting sorta attached to them; i use to rename my soldiers with the names of my friends to add the feeling of attachment to my squad.
In old X-COM and also in the new one it worked well; in LW, with the mandatory rotation and the longer roster you lose part of that

In Blood Bowl you mentioned bad accidents happen, but not that much frequently, at least to my team (I play Chaos and Orcs usually so accidents are on the other side) but here there is less the feeling of attachment to your best catcher, it’s like when you lose a battle and your best general in Total War, ok shit happens, what really matters is the campaign i have another army nearby, their army went off the city to attack me and payed the victory, i will get my revenge and conquer the city.

While I get what you’re saying, that isn’t necessarily true. Keep in mind, like ye olden X-COM games, we can have multiple bases, with multiple ships and multiple squads (good lord, typing ‘multiple’ that many times is challenging!). So while the OG squad might end up super-powered, the chances of you being able to go throughout the game with JUST that squad is, fingers crossed, highly unlikely. Being able to respond to a haven attack on the other side of the world just isn’t feasible.

So even if you just explore with one, you may have several squads to cover different areas. And if you actually play long enough to make several squads of super soldiers (like I do!), well, that’s your choice. If the research in BB5 is any indication, you can probably fast-track this game fairly easily. I personally prefer longer, drawn-out games in X-COM, but that’s just me.

Get more family and friends lol. I never had an issue filling out multiple squads in LW.

Whetever mechanics are added that is something which, I think, is imporant to keep. Being able to avoid a failure is overall a good design. If one adds “Frah Kio” mechanics to add difficulty I see it as an inability to create an interesting and rewarding challenge.

However, I do agree that the Lovecraftian feel, which seemed to ooze from early trailers and concepts, simply isn’t present in current set of mechanics. I think a lot could be done with the mist and will - will just seems too easy to regain. I really liked overwatch costing a point of will - I wish they would bring it back for the final release.

Overall, if they would make it, so we have to keep both health and will in check to succeed in the mission, that could be enough.

Encouraging having couple different squads in rotation would be a good (as well as allowing for it to happen through avaiable resources/recruit cost).

If traits were to be introduced (and I don’t necessarly believe they should), I would suggest it:

  1. Make will more difficult to regain will, therefore increase risk of soldier panicking in mission, if overusing abilities.
  2. Once a soldier panics he will gain a temporary negative trait - he needs to rest a certain amount of time in the base before the trait will disapear, possibly an addictive amount of time per-trait (healing one trait at a time), if he suffers multiple panic attacks.
  3. You can take him on the missions, but then you conciously risk debuffs/possibly of him/her behaving erratically.

Still, it all seems more like inconvenience, rather then an interesting cog added to the game. I didn’t find those compelling in Darkest Dungeon nor XCOM2:WotC (didn’t play Battle Brothers so can’t comment on that). I would rather make managing will, terror and panic a core part of tactical battle, then a gimmick on strategic scale. I hoped mist will add this overwhelming, mysterious feel (if I remember missions within mist were supposed to be covered with it) but considering how the mist works I don’t see it happening.

I think an ability to spot enemies before they are of any danger to you is to blame as well. And their nature is very… ballistic? When I think alien horror I don’t think guns, granades and artillery.

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I’m too old and grumpy for that, but i used football players and actors/actresses even if doing so you have Dwayne Johnson and Lionel Messi the same size.

What i meant is that rotating 40 50 isnt the same than rotating a dozen, harder to remember who did what saving or risking to lose a mission.

I would quite happily have more men and recruit everyone I find and have them in multi locations around the world, however, at present it is a struggle to just keep one squad going with resources as it is so expensive and very little return! If your to build the base, get new equipment, get new men run more than one base at present you can’t without the “cheat”. As there is a “time limit” and money so you really can’t take your time and enjoy the game completely! The argument I get for this is that it keeps the pressure on and forces you to make choices and decisions, to me that is just crap! I like to think things out (which is why I like these kinds of games) and expand slowly and explore all. I know the game must end, but it should be a choice not a forced condition! The other argument they say it would “spoil” replay value if you could do all in one game, again crap answer! There are many different endings to explore and playing it again with different strategies is always an option. So yes if time allowed and materials allowed then I am all for many different bases and soldiers, but they have a lot of work to do to get it even close to that at present!

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Guess I should also put my opinion. What I liked in Long War (1 & 2) was the capacity to have a huge roster. Still I really hated it when I lost one. Don’t know how but I felt like I knew all of them. I wouldn’t even rename them. Being (kind of) forced to rotate between squads was great.

  • LW1: soldiers were all at base so any could participate in any mission.
  • LW2: soldiers are all in the avenger and you dispatch them for infiltration with your skyranger (don’t really know how they come back from a mission if avenger is not in the same zone - but I don’t care)
  • PP: soldiers are either in a base or a ship (currently usualy manticore). You have to return to a base to change squad (it’s long … to very long … and potentially multiple steps … while you can’t explore ‘?’ points or set a new area scan).
    So I know PP is more realistic but it is not valuating a big roster. Lots of soldiers will simply be staying in bases because you are exploring the other side of the planet and can’t pick them up, and you can’t have enough transport ships to make them be useful and protect havens nearby.

Regarding long term damage to soldiers (which is the subject), I’m OK with it as long as you can cure it. Otherwise, your soldier is basically out of rotation and will be guarding a remote base in Ushuaia.

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I love it! :smile:

Last time I played XCom2 I went with the marines from Aliens. It was really cool reaching a point where I could recruit Ripley. Unfortunately she died in the next mission :joy:

I was thinking about what might happen to those soldiers who are damaged beyond the point of being operational when making the OP, and I was originally going to suggest the possibility to retire them and have them by recorded in a Hall of Fame, but it felt too similar to what XCom2 does so I left it out.

A better idea might be if you could retire injured soldiers into your training team, and in doing so give the possibility to be able to select a perk from each, which would then have a chance to appear amongst the fresh recruits of the same class (So an assault with the dash perk being retired could increase the chances of new assaults also having dash.)

I’m totally with you on that :slight_smile:

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No, me neither. I was expecting stealth attacks, creatures running along the ceilings, plants with sticky tongues exploding from the ground, overwhelming numbers of melee opponents chasing your squad down dark corridors whilst you lay down covering fire and try to get back to your vehicle. At the moment it kinda feels like you’re fighting a human opponent.

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Tritons, regenerating, invisible, bloodsucking, paralyzing and able to cover the area in a deadly mist are aliens even if the AI often use them as i use human snipers

Syrens are very alien: acid, a deadly banshee like scream able to frenzy allies and mind control enemies aer very alien too

Charons are a biological mobile artillery and Arthrons are the cannon fodder grunts deployed to soak damage with their shields and allow the bosses to advance avoiding enemy fire.

Yes the environment, expecially in mist covered area, could be more alien and hostile; think about doing a lair fully covered in mist where enemies see you and you barely see where you put your feet

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Sirens aside, you’ve pretty much described the others as human equivalents there. :wink:

Tritons - Snipers
Charons - Artillery
Arthrons - Shield wielding grunts (I was thinking of them as being like riot police)

I get that they’re mutated from humans, or earth based animals, but they all behave in a human rather than even animalistic way, never mind alien.

(Imho the Queen is the most alien feeling creature on the battlefield at the moment with its ability to walk through buildings)

But where are the tentacles coming out of walls?

My knowledge of alien behaviour is somewhat limited, but it’s true that they are some sort of predators, like humans are.

Tritons are stealty opportunistic like cats, with some alien extra like blood sucking like mosquitos for example, and mist, squids use something similar.

Arthrons are pack predators like wolves, barracudas and some ant.

Charons are ranged predators and here i can only think at conus shellfishes

Havent yet met the queen, all my campaigns had problems before; i dont think the queen is the egg laying thing we find in lairs, something that can be killed with a swiss knife and a lot of time. This one cannot walk at all, it’s like an ant or termite queen, it’s only job is to eat something others bring to her and lay eggs

An octopus is not a wall, more a rock, when using his chameleon skill, but he has tentacles

Anyway pandorans are mutated terran lifeforms so it’s alright they use skills others animals do