My take in the Action Point System

One of the things that I liked from XCOM was it’s 2 point action system for its simplicity and overall it didn’t produce any waste of points at the end of the turn.

Yes, this system has its own problems as you can’t micromanage a soldier to move one tiled at a time each time, you also can’t stop and react to enemies that are reveled as they were hiding in the fog, once you gave the command to move in XCOM you were committed to it no matter what, and if you were spotted by the enemy then it was time clunch your cheeks for not getting your soldier Killed. It was quite the frustrating experience making many players rage quit the game, myself included.

Now, Phoenix Point is fixing that with its more classic point system approach, one were you could spend points into actions one at the time and not get caught out without you being able to do anything about it, a much needed and reasonable approach to a turn-based game where a wrong move can get your soldiers killed in a single turn, however, this creates what I like to call “waste points” and it is something that bothers the hell out of me, now let me explain.

When you make a move in Phoenix Point you spent as many points you need to go from point A to point B, so far so good, now you are undercover and you still have some action points left, what to do? well nothing, let us say you don’t have enough points to shoot and even if you can keep moving to the next tiled there is no point in doing so, so you end your turn and the “points” that you didn’t use are waste.

This is the part where still having a few points in my soldier that I won’t be using being lost bothers me, as I look to use all of my points each turn, however, those points that I still have left are still lost no matter what.

Why the Player can’t be rewarded for not expending all of his points each turn, for example by being added to the next one turn instead of just being reset. That’s why instead of the inflexible and unrewarding system of the old needs some changes as I make the proposition for one method of going around this problem:

Solution: If you don’t spend all of your points in turn they are saved to your next turn with a hard cap of +25% max saved points so Players can’t abuse it, at the same time that they are rewarded for using their points wisely each turn, as you can plan using your points now or save some of them for the next turn.

Thanks for reading this long text, best regards to everyone.

Might need some balancing, but it’s a good idea in principle. Stands to reason that if you didn’t use up all your energy at one moment in a fight, that you’d have a bit more later on.

I really don’t see the point of it, except for the fact that you for some reason dislike having some action points left.

Action points represent what you can do, not what you have to do. One might even decide not to take any action what-so-ever.

While I don’t theoretically object to such system, it’s main purpose would be to address your bugbear, rather then be a meaningful addition.


Currently playing a Long War (Enemy Within).

When you talk about wasted points , I’m not sure how you would feel on a mission where your soldiers are being surrounded by floaters, thin men seekers and overseers and two of your soldiers need to reload (which means end of turn). And moving is not really an option with the 3 overwatches.
At least in phoenix point you can reload AND shoot afterwards. There, my soldier has two options: switch to pistol (which has only 1 ammo) or reload and hope he will stay alive for the next turn (and not too much “red fog” for those who know what it is).

The AP system is actually one of the biggest buyers from my point of view. Yes I can end up not using all of them, but at least I have the choice.
The “easy” 2 moves system of XCOM is my biggest grief against the game.

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I was to respond with argument how often one waste point in XCOMs, but I don’t think the OP has an issue with how the game works, or inflexibility of action point, but his personal avertion to leaving the action bar partially filled. XCOMs “waste” of available actions isn’t communicated via UI, and that is the boggle issue for OP, I think.

I also have a question about ‘restore willpower’ button - what that actually mean? Did soldier have a sleep at this turn, prayed or relaxed with mohito? Why it should have special button for that, if willpower can be restored automatically, according equally to unspended action points?

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Yeah, it bugs me to no end, and as you said in XCOM such a waste of points is not seen by the player, so I don’t have any problem with that.

The change would add a very small layer of strategy for the player because he will be rewarded for thinking in what to do and how to use his points carefully and not just dashing to the goal, also I don’t know I am the only one with this kind of “problem” or if people will like more strategy layers into their game, that’s why I made this post.

The change is not that meaningful and it is not intended to be, is just a simple change that may be well received by the player community or not, after all, the point system has stayed the same game after game for years, yeah it works but it bugs me every time, that’s why I think people love XCOM point system even when nobody realized why, but that’s me in particular that thinks that.

I agree with you, the AP system is a much better system to micromanaged strategy games like this, however, unspent points going waste is what I like to see be change.

Reality is hard to program, because there are a lot of variables, introducing a soldiers fatigue system where a soldier that spent all of his points each turn shouldn’t be able to move while the soldier that only move half is still fresh as a lettuce and can keep moving in the field, something like this would be very hard to implement, that’s why I am suggesting something more simple.

Unspent points go to next your next turn with a hard cap of 25%

Just forget about these unused points and they won’t bother you. Expanding possible actions for a soldier who was idle in previous turn is unrealistic. He entered ‘zen’ state to be quicker in next few seconds? Can he bend time with his will not even using his will (Will Points)? :wink: Why such soldier could do more in the same time as other soldier is doing in given time unit?

Please, don’t introduce Lean Management and Zero Waste methodologies to tactical combat game. :smiley:


It is not that easy just to forget about it, I can play the game but it takes away from the immersion experience having to think of that.

In reality, a soldier that runs 60 minutes and a solider that does nothing for 60 minutes, will have different values into their actions points for the next turn.

Only a robot will move the same, making feel the soldiers less alive.

Yes but those are quick tactical encounters, not the long massive medieval battles. :slight_smile:

Why no? staying just the same always because it is good enough will not take us anywhere, introducing new ideas to a strategy game and forms of play is what is this all about right?

In real life mechanics are always changing as new weapons are introduced to the battlefield, I am just talking about soldier fatigue while in combat, this is reflected by the will of the solider and by the actions points they have each turn that is not staying the just same.

With more reason, the soldiers are using every drop of energy they have, making them tired during combat, as they need to be quick on their feet.

So I would agree to make soldiers more slow after some time (like 10 turns?). But don’t quicken them because they waited earlier. :slight_smile:

I would not mind that, but the problem is with the unspent points is being able to still move, if you saw a button that said “don’t press me” in your game would not bother the hell out of you?

It’s not so much a zen state as a conservation of energy in order to be able to explode quicker into action. If you put two sprinters into a race where one has been able to start ‘on their marks’ whilst the other has just had to run a 100m up to that starting line and perform a standing start, then the sprinter who could conserve their energy is going to be quicker over the next 100m.

Just forget about those lean management techniques and zero waste methodologies and they won’t bother you :wink:

Great name for a solider though ‘Shitsuke Kaizen’

XCOM solved this problem but it introduces another kind of problems that other players were bothered by, so that’s why Phoenix Point went back to old system because it bothered players, but them it reintroduces the problem of having the “don’t press me” button always-on again that bothers me, and perhaps making players that liked XCOM may dislike Phoenix Point, however, I think this can be solve.

Lean Zero Callsign “Waste” always on the run from the aliens Lean is always quick on his feet make him able to waste any enemy camps he encountered in his travels earning him the nickname of “waste”

I really don’t think that XCOM’s movement system was developed for the reason you think it was developed. It might have appealed to your action bar OCPD tendencies, but that wasn’t their goal.

I am sorry if that bothers you but I sympathise it as much as I would with someone asking to remove crabmen, because they can’t stand looking at crabs. That sucks, but it’s purely your problem not game’s.

The system you suggest doesn’t even make sense to me. Saving up to 25% is quite significant granting an extra shot with a smaller weapon next turn. Action points are your per-turn resources. They dictate how much you can do per-turn. Having them spill over to subsequent turns it doesn’t add extra strategical layer: afterall your goal isn’t to add an extra layer to decision making (should I move now, or stay still and have benefits later?), but to fix what you perceive as a cosmetic defect in the current system. I would suggest modding out the action bar.

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Well, that system is working perfectly in classic Jagged Alliance. Also stamina mechanics is already realyzed in Phoenix Point, and exausted soldiers got cutted action points. So probably that idea has a sense. Same time, I am confused by idea of fully restore of willpower after one turn of fool around by special button. So I prefer idea to convert all unused action points in willpower in the end of the turn.

No. I would not press it as it would proably mean empty Geoscape. :wink: Snapshot can introduce button for you “Spend rest of AP to have a cigarette”. :wink:

Sometimes soldiers just need to wait after performing some action to move further (thus are left with some AP). That doesn’t mean they are quicker later.

But they already prepare themselves between their previous turn and next turn. If they need some additional preparation they will need to use willpower. That what is Dash for (currently overpowered). Just as @Wormerine said:

Except they don’t. Turns in a TBS are representative of periods of time. Your soldiers aren’t moving during your turn and then resting during the opponent’s turn, the turn is just the change of status for one player being able to execute moves, and then the AI having their turn to.

PP shows this quite nicely, as you can still see enemy movement during your turn, and it includes the possibility for interrupts (overwatch).

The only actual opportunity for rest comes during your own turn.

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