My top 7 WTF moments from some legendary gameplay

I played all Firaxis XCOM games on ironman, but gave up doing that with this one because it’s nor fit for that (yet?). So all those WTF moments below didn’t make me ragequit and deinstall the game, which I am proud of! It’s the real ironman attitude for Phoenix Point! Anyway, here are my top WTF moments from the last 60 or so hours:

(1) Jumping desperately right next to a invisible Siren that just mind controlled one of my guys and hid itself in a mist patch afterwards, exposing myself to enemy sniper fire in the process, only to find out THAT I CAN’T REVEAL IT! WTF!!! MY GUY STANDS RIGHT IN FRONT OF IT AND CAN TOUCH IT’S FACE BUT CAN’T BASH IT?!? After calming down I move a second guy right next to it with the same result! Instead of a ragequitting I finally did a rage burst with my heavy into the red exclamation mark with the help of a nearby assault. That did it. But again: WTF!

(2) Figuring out after countless hours that doing all those exploration events for resources is a WASTE OF TIME! I could have got all resources from my friendly New Jericho neighbourhood right at the doorstep of my base! WTF! It’s super cheap (just some sniper ammo), I can do it 5 times in a row without loosing valuable time and best of all: They are still my friends afterwards! Actually I am allied with them despite having killed more of their soldiers then the Pandorians ever will! But ok, I guess the game wants to teach you that becoming a opportunistic scumbag is the way to success in this world. I get it. Therefore my assault, who gathers most of the resources, just got a new nickname: ‘The Trump’…

(3) My first encounter with a Scylla that jumps over half the map, kills one of my dudes and gives birth to a mindfragger all in the same turn. WTF! Yes, I know, some of my guys are also half-gods, while others a mere mortals, who can only watch in awe when the titans are fighting. I am still undecided if I should call this progression system a stroke of a genius or a road into absurdity…

(4) My first encounter with an Arthron Umbra! Do I need to say more?

(5) Figuring out after some heavy calculations that the Triton poacher, that was just engulfed in flames by my flamethrower guy, will die from the 10 bleed and the 40 fire damage all over his body in his turn, only to see him live (he only got 10 bleed damage) and pump some viral ammo into my guy, making him panic for eternity! Guess that’s a bug with bleed damage overriding fire damage, but WTF!!!

(6) Having my vehicle getting stuck because it’s surrounded by worms!?! WTF VEHICLE AI! We are not members of the world wild life fund! Just drive over them! What? The AI routine for ramming was disabled? WHO DID THAT! Ok, take a route through that building at your side. What? You can’t breach the wall? You know that this dude there with his poser bionic torso can run through walls, right? And you are telling me your 10 tons of steel on wheels can’t??? WTF!

(7) A funny one: Watching the human AI run from one fire patch into another, loosing half of it’s health in the process, only to apply a medkit to another guy for 10+ health points! Way to go forward AI! I cheer to you! But seriously: Just a helpful tip for aspiring game designers from an amateur modder: IF actor_health <= .5 THEN FUNCTION(apply_medkit) ELSE FUNCTION(shot_the_f***_enemy) END.

16 Likes

We all share these WTF moments with you :grin:

The only one that didn’t happen to me was (1). Also (5) didn’t happen, but that’s a bug, so it’s less WTFicky, it’ll probably get patched soon.

(3) is fine, not real a ragequit-inducing moment unless it happens in the first turn, it’s a “boss” after all… but still very WTFicky!!

And about (2)… just don’t do that, you’ll find the game much more fun! And much more difficult also :stuck_out_tongue:

5 Likes

I kind of want to agree with that, but but I did have some fun through “cheating/exploiting”. I’m conflicted. Spent a lot of time testing out different ways of accelerating and preparing for different aspects of this game. Both finding a “fun” path to the end, and an “easy” path to the end… and both kind of held up on their own mostly, other than the actual grinding of easy missions for easy resources was certainly 100% not fun.

Choosing a Faction and creating arbitrary restrictions on technology and behaviour (to align with the faction) and adopting their ideologies without senseless raiding or killing (beyond what they get you to do) created a very prolonged and nail-biting experience. Tension was always high as I was always desperate for more resources, and I had to make very wise decisions with whatever I was afforded. I couldn’t be careless. It was ruthless and fun, like an actual “Hard Mode”. Combat always felt like the enemy had an edge on me, so I’d have to outsmart it. Very Rogue-Like.

Playing the game as-is and exploiting the mechanics for the most benefits was a complete chore of an experience in the beginning. My logs have me at around 5000 of every resource by days 2-5 in the game. Resources were 100% negligible and I immediately opened up every base I’d need and used Access Lifts (build and destroy to gain access to further spots in the base without needing to wait for construction to finish) to fill out the bases. 4 Bases would be completely done by the 2nd week, 3 aircraft by the 3rd day. Flying through research and just waiting for the game to give me the opportunity to progress it (often having to activate a base to scout for areas so I can reach the Story Missions). More soldiers/vehicles/aircraft than I needed, so anything lost wasn’t actually a loss. Every fight was easy and I didn’t have to stress about what I had to do next. Everything was easy to respond to, and a bit fun to explore the world. Could try crazy combos without the worry or concern of whether it might work or not, because no decision really mattered. Very much a “Cheat-mode” type of game. Combat I always had an edge on my enemies, no thinking required.

It’s almost a game they’ve got here. They need to do SOMETHING to fix raiding, I’ve been complaining about this for half a year or so now. Still haven’t actually beaten the game (but have full confidence I could’ve in every one of these playthroughs, the game just gets insanely boring in the later half)

2 Likes

I always play what you described as an actual “hard mode” (on veteran difficulty), and I’ve never actually beat it too, although as you I know I could. What stopped me though were the 2 savegame changes and the release of DLC2. You’re right that it gets boring near the end though, starting a new game is always a thrill, much more fun.

What you described as a “cheat mode” is impossible for me to do. I can’t stand a game that is a chore and not a game. That’s why I suggested you don’t do that, but as you said you already played like I suggested.

I’ve an old canny post about changes in this regard and it’s in “planned” state so I expect these changes may come sooner rather than later:

We’ve since discussed a lot more about these aspects here in the forum but I didn’t update the canny post since I figure SG knows the problems and already have planned changes.

3 Likes

raiding/diplomacy system is definitely on their radar, as it has been pointed out to them through these forums (they do read it) the council and canny. but they haven’t yet found a solution they are satisficed with and other problems are taking priority for now.

hopefully in the near future…

5 Likes

About this topic,
I had similar WTF moment, which I would like to share…

On my first gameplay, I bit struggled to prepare second and third team, with manufacture all equipment and aircrafts, but I considered it, as a part of game - so Phoenix point has a very strict in-game economy.

Later I started a new campaign just for experimenting, so I tried to steal aircraft on beginning game - it was so easy, and with some trifling penalty. WTF!!! How much materials and manufacture time could I saved ?!?

That was one of these moments, when I realized, that “a balance is not a strong part” of Phoenix Point

5 Likes

There’s a canny topic to try to resolve that issue:

3 Likes

I posted “my story” there

Hopefully it would be fixed

Aside of this, I though, would be cool to have possibility of “false flag operation” , if You raid faction’s haven with soldiers equipped by third faction (or Bandit) armor/gear

What do You think?

2 Likes

That’s being discussed there too, but I’m not really convinced of it, even if it’s sure to be fun.

Why should Phoenix Point as an organization encourage more disagreement among the factions, what’s the story behind it?

If I’m just looking from the lore aspect to this:
From the beginning it is said that the factions alone are unable to stand up to the Pandorans because they are in constant mutual conflict. It makes little sense to me to make things worse when everything else is more important.

Tbh, I think it would take a lot of effort to implement and to make the mechanics coherent and easy for the player to understand.

For example, what matters more: 1) the armor the operatives are wearing, 2) the type of aircraft they arrive in, or 3) whether they/the aircraft is already known to the haven/to the faction as belonging to PX?

On this problem in general

I think the devs clearly want the player to raid faction havens and to have these moments when you don’t want to do it because you are the good guy but you have to, because you need to. (see JG interview on that point, for example).

In practice it’s really not like that (at least it’s not like that for many players): you have plenty of resources and there are no consequences gameplaywise for attacking factions. Stealing an aircraft is - 6 to faction rep, destroying a nest is +5.

However, I don’t think that prohibitively high rep penalties for raiding is something that the devs would want (and to be clear I’m not handling any privileged info here :wink:).

I wonder though: is the problem the low penalty for raiding, or the excessively high reward for haven defense and Pandoran base destruction?

Personally, when it comes to this I always end up circling back to the problem of pace: the game rewards doing as many things as possible in the shortest time possible, and the “speed bumps”, such as they are, are very easy to circumvent if you know how to do so.

3 Likes

On this one I’m with madskunky and voland. Not only I think it’s way complex to understand, it’s also hard to make it as a good and balanced gameplay option. I guess if this was a major mechanic of the game from the beginning it could be a part of it, but attaching it as a second thought may bring in more harm than good.

1 Like

It doesn’t need to be prohibitively high, it just needs to be a total net loss that the player “feels” and is not so easily recovered. The high rewards for haven defense are needed when you don’t abuse the system with raids or trading and don’t steal. If we then consider a scenario where it really is as JG mentioned (there are consequences to your actions and you need to do things you don’t want to), I think that the abusable holes need to be closed first and then some minor adjustments to resource rewards can be made. What could be toned down are the rep rewards from haven defenses.

About the pandoran base destruction rewards I don’t think they need to be toned down much because that rep reward really makes sense, but it can be tweaked to give more rep to havens in the pandoran base range and a bit less overall faction rep.

The problem with lowering rep is that to increase rep players would need to do more and more haven defenses, which are a drag. We need more mission types :slight_smile:. So you’re right in here:

However, do you mean they’re easy to circumvent by playing fair or abusing systems? I mean, if you don’t create regular trade routes nor raid or steal it’s not an easy game… it’s not too hard but it’s very stressful!

I’m trying to move away from that distinction, because if it’s in the game, it’s in the game… unless it’s a bug.

Is stealing an aircraft early in the game, abusing the system? Or commodity arbitrage? Or the way Stamina and Healing work? Or equipment sharing?

Maybe some of them are not intended, or are used in an unintended way, but certainly not all of them.

But to answer your question, after much experimenting I have settled into avoiding those things I find tedious, so equipment sharing is a big no-no and I can’t be bothered with optimizing Stamina utility and often I heal my guys and gals at the base like a noob :slightly_smiling_face:

And when it comes to aircraft stealing, I arrived to a surprising conclusion: these are the missions with which I have the lowest success rate. In my current playthrough (first after Polaris), I stole 1 Helios vs 3 Helios I didn’t steal because they were blown up before I could complete the mission.

Commodity arbitrage is something I do without excessive dedication; I buy Synedrion Tech when I can and sell it to Anu and to NJ for food and materials, for a 50% ROI.

So, when I say that the speed bumps are easy to circumvent, I’m not talking only about optimal, expert geoscape management, but something that can be reasonably expected of an experienced player (or rather some, perhaps many, but definitely not all experienced players).

I want speed bumps that could be interesting for all players. For example, things that would make returning to base after missions both necessary (healing/Stamina/equipping) and something to look forward to (leveling up/PX base events*). I also think basic PX equipment should be much cheaper, and buying equipment for recruits at havens, optional, so that optimal resource management has less of an impact.

*PX base events would work like haven events; there would be a random chance of something good happening when you come back to base, with a few options to choose from.

2 Likes

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

2 Likes

Hey this is copy/paste from my previous post and earned 2 likes! :joy:

As you said, some are, some are not. But most just are abused in ways the devs seem not to have intended, and need just some adjustment.

Sorry I didn’t understand you entirely about what’s tedious or not. I think you meant that you don’t share equipment for instance, but for me sharing equipment is very tedious, so I don’t do it. I love the shared storage, but I don’t change the equipment of my soldiers between different squads to always have the best gear in all missions. I equip all of them with what I want them to have or the best I can give, so the B team for instance uses handovers from the A team and not the same gear.

I don’t know what you mean by optimizing stamina utility… I fly around with my team until they are about to get tired, then return to the closest outpost with living quarters. I build living quarters in most of my bases so that I don’t have to fly far away.

I also heal my guys at the base like a noob, unless I really needed to go to a mission with a very injured soldier, then I heal him at the start of the mission. I don’t like having to do this, though, it takes away the immersion. I prefer to have to heal at the base.

I only do it when I need to. In my opinion this shouldn’t always be profitable, there should be a market with prices that fluctuate and situations that change things up and create floods or scarcities of some resource for some days.

I consider myself an experienced player albeit not being that much. The game is very easy if I don’t play with “my” rules. When I play it my way though, the resource part is hard. I’m not an expert and you guys that play a lot more surely do better, but I think the game economy is hard when you block the abusable systems even if you know how to circumvent things (but not abuse the circumventing strategies). I mean, you should be able to get profit from arbitraging commodities, just not always, and so on.

Agree, nice points.

2 Likes

That’s equipment sharing, to have just one set of equipment and share it between all the squads. It’s very tedious. You don’t do it, and I don’t do it.

It just means to always make the most of the Stamina, like making sure you don’t have a moment of idleness at the base for soldiers with full Stamina, for example.

In the end the restrictions we play with are probably similar, though for different reasons.

3 Likes

Hmm, I guess I do this, not because I want to, but because of the game’s hectic pace…

2 Likes

That is really THE ADVICE, getting much more XP and SP by doing as many missions as possible - sometimes by RNG drop chance, doing more missions gives items to reverse engineer , exploring more gives more resources and diplomacy. That seems to be the secret key.

It has come down to not coming back to heal at all - healing via medikits, and builiding more living space just to add faster stamina replacement, even you at moment dont need extra soldiers.

So more you do, and faster you do - likely to succeed in general plan (doing important missions while enemy is weaker, getting resources for bases and team faster etc.).

Surely, some better mutation and heaven attack algorithm would bring more sense to game - but that is not the case.

1 Like

I have to agree, that there are better areas, where can put effort

I like this idea, but in present form, it is more like “making easy money” than “dirty job”
There needs to be a dilemma for a player

In my opinion, the reward is ok, because PP has strict in-game economy (I would suggest to adjust manufacturing prices based on game difficulty, but that is another topic), and I see the problem directly in low penalty - what about if the raiding decreases human population? That would be a proper dilemma for player

2 Likes