Basically PP is a digital board game a la D&D. Snapshot has attempted to added new and innovative elements. While it follows other similar progressions, it has add new wrinkles. Some of which works well, while others need refinement. In all of these genres, the player’s characters generate new and greater powers to beat the enemy. While some feel these are OP (on both sides), that’s how this genre works. It’s a work of fantasy ( a la H.P. Lovecraft). It’s not meant to be a simulation of reality. Granted, they have included realistic ballistics, etc., but it’s still a fantasy. Fantasy differs from SciFi, where the latter is more based on reality. Fantasy takes reality into realms that should be unthinkable. If one accepts that it’s a fantasy, they should expect that everything is not like the real world. I think many want a true simulation and not a fantasy. Let’s allow the devs to fine tune their goals before we pass a final verdict.
If any of you have played The Banner Saga (a tough turn based strategy) you will get severe deja vu willpower etc. I keep hearing about the innovation in PP but it seems more about inspiration from other games and pushing xcom towards the trend of more RPG.
It’s a slightly dangerous steer because the options become so broad it makes keeping a balance impossible. Especially a small team, and so so many features to support. Many of which are superfluous to core gameplay imho.
The development was crowd funded, the game is / was being crowd tested and now the design and direction will be a crowd council
The priorities of development are to some large degree crowd implemented using canny.
All decision making seems to have been delegated from the start. Hence a game that’s suffering a little from an identity crisis. Interested in JGs role now and thoughts…
Maybe he is breaking his thought with some fancy algorithms. We debate if acid should be 30 or 50 damage or if Rally the Troops should be 1 / turn or linked to officer function. And Gollop sits there and is testing next iterations of flight combat, interceptions of air transports, what missions should be generated by those interceptions, and how the hell do underwater missions in 3D environment of Unity engine, etc?
Do you often try mods for games? Have you played in XCOM: Long War 1-2?
Global mods make the game more detailed (realistic) and deeper. Or only Moders - Can, but Devs - No?
A lot of the more complex mods are made after the devs have moved on to other projects. Thankfully, we have devs that are still working on this project. They have demonstrated and stated that they are still working to achieve some of our goals. While some of the community’s goals may be outside the design/vision of the creators.
I did try out both of them, and I would say that they are prime examples of good mods that would have been poor “vanilla” games. Personally, I didn’t like them, though I’m happy that you and many others did - that’s the great thing about mods.
BTW, that’s why Firaxis contracted the modders to do a mod (Long War 2), instead of hiring them to do a DLC. Firaxis opted to jump start the modding community instead of making changes to the base game that would alienate many players.
So, in short, yes, Long War is something only modders can do.
And it’s not because Long War is a deeper, more realistic experience and the base game is a compromise to keep the arcade players on board. It’s more that LW catters to the (very legitimate) wishes of a subset of players who place a premium on certain game features that other players either don’t care about, or don’t care for.
For example, I remember that when Firaxis XCom was released some players were going ballistic about how you only had one Skyranger and had to choose between going to 1 of 3 abduction sites instead of being able to field several teams to go to all of them. And there was this constant audit of how many features from UFO Defence Firaxis XCom was “missing”, like games were home appliances and newer models are supposed to come with all the functionalities of the older ones… And, I repeat myself, but for that sort of thing, mods are the solution.
That’s the problem. PP appears tactical at first look, because it has wonderful design of complex game mechanics (free aim, bullet simulation, flexible APs, body parts, …). And that’s damn cool. At second look, PP allows extreme mobility, superhero skills, extreme AP regeneration, [insert something], which makes the glittering first glance more and more cloudy.
Even FiraXCOM, which has created a mix of tactics and arcade, set significantly stricter limits. I don’t want to discuss all the details but just an example. There were also superhero skills, but these were often limited to “once per mission” so that certain tactics were still maintained. PP doesn’t necessarily have to do the same, but it’s been 5 months now and the problems (second look) are well known (or aren’t they?). I mean the more time passes, the more doubts arise. Is that the way PP builds a mix of tactical and arcade?
PP has to hope that most fall in love at first look
I don’t want to judge, not snapshot, not anybody. Everything needs it’s time. And people will wait and forgive everything. However, there is no communication in this regard, which is why concerns arise.
Addition: I know that the devs also work on balance. The decision: do I want to have superheroes in this game? (“yes” or “no”) is not a balance adjustment for me, but a fundamental decision about the identity of the game.
This is the level of the game on Legend Difficulties. Players “playing on the Legend” are very few from the general audience, but they are often the most intelligent and loyal fans. And they are foolish to ignore and useful to encourage, for example, Advertising the game through streamers on Twitch and YouTube, reviews and comments of the game on the Internet, etc. (Who is aimed at the Legend - waiting for the sensation of Long War, and do not want the “children’s” skills)
Now look at the level of understanding and adaptation to the game on Beginner’s Difficulties. Reviews say the game is for a beginner too punishing and difficult to learn. (Those who are aiming at the Beginner are confused and burned)
To summarize, the Devs do not pay enough attention to both very important audience groups. For whom and why are they developing this game?
Make Superhero mode only for Beginner and Veteran to teach the mechanics and rules of the game.
By betting only on mass audiences, the Devs will lose to Gears Tactics and Chimera Squad.
I don’t know what the intention is there on the devs side, but the only way I can enjoy the game at this point is by exercising strict self restraint on the use of skills, and I’m not the only one.
However, I do enjoy using the skills in this fashion. I think they enrich the game and allow for interesting choices. Could there be a realistic and meaningful alternative? Maybe, I don’t know.
What I don’t agree with (and I constantly get into fights over) is that a better alternative is right there - just take the mechanics of game X from the 90s, or its more recent remake Y. Not because I didn’t like that game X, but because I loved it, played it to death and if I wanted to play it now, I would be playing it.
I hope that they are making the game that they themselves would like to play.
Almost all of the reviews are based on the initial release, prior to the tweaking of the DDA. Since the Leviathan patch, the “punishing” part has almost disappeared. As to the “difficult to learn”? If one is familiar with the genre (TBS), it shouldn’t be that difficult. But for a platform gamer, you bet it would be difficult, so would almost any other TBS game.
Please remember these words, after a month of communication and interaction with the Devs.
And then imagine what will happen on the release in Steam.
(bad already happened, Steam will put only the final point)
Game Over …
Edit: Thanks anyway for the clarification
Since I’m seeing a cool “Community Counciller” badge attached to some users, I was right about this
Well it happened. But council is still growing, so estimated time of actually doing something is in the mid of May. (@UnstableVoltage I hope that this information is not violating NDA?)
You will need to wait few weeks until we will start doing something.
I feel there will be really many different opinions from Councilors, just by reading Discord channel. That will be tough battle to beat them all.
That’s the thing though. It isn’t a battle. We’re not looking for “one voice” to be heard over the rest. We’re looking for a number of voices, even with different opinions, so that we can consider and investigate every angle, and look at other options when we need to.
For me it always is. I just sometimes have allies.
But being serious - I suspect there will be better opinions than my own from at least few players.
+1 to wot @VOLAND says,
I think it says a lot that many of your longest and most experienced players have all declared in one way, shape or form that the only way they can keep this game interesting is by limiting their ability to alpha-strike.
As Voland says, alpha-striking’s not a reward, it’s boring. I don’t want to be able to completely destroy the enemy in 1 or 2 turns. I want to engage in a tight, tactical battle which rewards good positioning and clever use of terrain - not spamming magical abilities.
Not sure quite how to react to this. I’ve already stopped playing the game until the next patch fixed various issues. Let’s see what that brings.
It’ a real shame. This game has so much potential - for players at both ends of the alpha-spectrum. All it needs is some Second Wave settings that allow players to tailour it to their preferred mode of play and it would be damn near perfect, but if this is the way it’s going, I’m probably waiting on @Yokes or @pantolomin to mod it for us.
XCOM lost me at Shen’s Last Gift - haven’t bought a single DLC since: I just play the Long Wars. Not that it matters to them, since WOTC is clearly the populist choice and all games companies ultimately have to follow the money (can you say ‘Warhammer’ anyone ).
But giving people the option to switch off skill exploits should be such a simple thing, I simply don’t understand why it’s not even being contemplated.
Even if the Devs ignore your advice, remember that a lot of “not stupid” people will silently wait for the “Phoenix decay to rekindle it again.”
@VOLAND, @MichaelIgnotus, @Yokes - All Members of the Concilium:
Try to send a written appeal to the CEO and the Director - Snapshot Games.
In the event of a stalemate.
Well, let’s see what feeding back through the Council will do.
As I’ve said many times before, I have no objection to those who like alpha-strike combos having the option to keep them - I’d just like a similar option to limit them and keep the game interesting.
Also, as I and Voland have long argued, alpha-striking is actually a BIG part of the balance problem - as in order for the Pandas to cope with alpha-squads, they have to ramp up the DDA, which promotes more alpha-builds, which ramps up the DDA, which promotes more alpha-builds…
Whereas limiting alpha-capabilities (but NOT completely eliminating them) maintains a much better balance within the game, and in my experience makes it much more enjoyable.
But then whaddo I know?