Hi there, I’d like to share some of my opinions/suggestions on the still fresh and new backer build 5
Any agrees or disagrees are welcome.
Of course I’m total aware that backer build is far from being final version of the game so many things still could change.
What I like:
- Backer build 5 feels like a big game at last, with researches, diplomacy, bases, manufacturing, and evolving story
- geoscape is impressive and it’s difficult to say what can be improved here. Maybe fights are too frequent.
- manufacturing is very simple and clear. I appreciate tabs for sorting stuff.
- I love soldiers’ management:
a) training: there are fewer skills (than in BB4), they are random and more expensive. Also gaining new levels by soldiers is slowered down. All of this feels very balanced which is so great!
b) equipment - equipping our soldiers is very intuitive, icons are well designed and appropriately differentiated: therefore legible. Round of applause for ammo+ button, simplicity of adding, moving or removing stuff, also reminders of replenishing weapons and ammunition.
- night missions, I like them.
- sounds are perfect, I love the gunshots, enemy voices, also echo which gunshots create! VO of soldiers isn’t so good but fortunately these are placeholders
- music is nice, I’m waiting for more music tracks from Mr. Broomhall.
- Triton is new interesting enemy even if I still haven’t figured him out too well.
What I don’t like:
- small maps, therefore too fast battle build-up. Too many times my soldiers see Pandorans on first or second turn. There is no much tension because of this. It still feels like quick skirmishes rather than full tactical missions. Don’t be afraid of making at least some of these battles longer, on bigger maps, even with a price of losing some dynamic (it’s not that important in turn-based tactical game).
- High mobility is very nice providing that there is more space for exploration and navigation. Now movement range of skilled soldier seems ridiculous as he may run through almost half of the map in single turn. see: small maps.
- problems with first person camera: view is often obstructed by a wall, even if soldier see his target. Maybe add some lean function for such situations? Or maybe option of rotating soldiers or making them kneel/stand (at least for FPP aiming purposes only)
- some of skills feel overpowered: maybe reduce jetpack range, at least for inexperienced heavy? The same goes with dash skill.
- squad icons are well designed but portraits would be better for easier recognition of soldiers (icons could stay on their portraits).
- I’m not sure if I like yellow markers of enemies who got out of sight. Wouldn’t be better to not know where they are, like in (old) X-com?
- I don’t know if I like seeing whole layout of the map from the very beginning: maybe hide further buildings, at least partially, behind the fog of war of some kind to make mission more mysterious/sinister?
- the “void” surrounding tactical map is very distractful.
- Overall atmosphere of the game: I feel like Phoenix Point cuts off of its Cthulhu inspirations and horror theme. It’s not near as scary as build 1. Even music by John Broomhall is almost friendly. But most important thing is to deliver good, entertaining strategic and tactical game in the end, so it’s not something bad after all.
- I don’t know if it’s on purpose but there is much less emphasis on building rooms in base. But maybe there will be more various and crucial rooms in the final version?
That’s all I want to say for now. I’m excited by how this game is evolving and how much fun it is providing, nevertheless some things which I don’t like. It’s time to go back to game now:-)