What's the point of the LoA resource sites?

So I’m a bit over halfway through a Necronomicon Legend campaign with the new DLC – just got to the end of January, allied/aligned status with all factions. Game’s definitely improved at the moment, but I’m struggling to figure out how the LoA content is supposed to fit into the game.

I’ve currently got one Living Crystal quarry under control. To do that I had to do the following:

• some research
• mission where I murdered some NJ soldiers
• built some Archaeology Labs
• blueprint missions where I murdered more people - done 2-3 so far and they never seem to stop
• build probes
• deploy probes, wait
• built more Archaeology Labs
• find a site, fly to site, spend a load of resources to start an expedition
• wait some more
• go clear the site

The site enemies are ridiculously hard compared to the rest of the game. I got swarmed by something like 10-12 of those guardian things all at once, each of which had a ton of HP, a deployable shield with even more HP, and a weapon as powerful as a sniper rifle. Once I saw how powerful they are I wanted to run away, which was when I discovered that the evac point was on the far side of the map (apparently the designers really don’t want you retreating from these missions). So I had to fight my way out. Ran through all my medkits and full magazines of gauss sniper and grenade launcher ammo, but I got lucky and won without losing any soldiers.

So I figure, okay, I was obviously underlevelled/underequipped for this fight, but hey, after all this work, I should get lots of rewards, right?

Nope. I get a quarry with a Phoenix Point symbol on it. Waited to see if it’d produce anything but it didn’t. From reading forum posts apparently I’m supposed to get a ‘Lapidary’ (whatever that is) and leave a manned aircraft sitting at the site (seriously?). So I have to kill more people for another 200 tech 1000 materials aircraft and leave it parked there forever?

Now, obviously part of the problem is that the UI is horrible and makes it completely unclear what you’re supposed to do. That’s not my big problem. My issue is this:

Given how many resources you have to sink into these sites and how ridiculously hard they are to clear, what on earth is the POINT of doing them?

I mean, the idea is that at the end of all this you get some special OP weapons, right? But the Ancient Guardians at the sites are already harder than every Pandoran in the game! If you can get a team that’s strong enough to consistently beat the Ancient Guardians, then you can complete the game easily. That one Living Crystal quarry was harder than the final mission of my Cthullu campaign!

Basically:

• if you CAN’T clear LoA sites, then trying to do the LoA content will get your A-team killed and will either cripple your progress or lose you the game
• if you CAN clear LoA sites, then you’re already so ridiculously strong that you can just head for the endgame and win the campaign already.

What’s the point of getting super-powerful weapons if you have to face super-powerful enemies to do it? At the moment I’m still struggling through the LoA content but it’s starting to feel as though from a strategic point of view, you’re better off just ignoring the LoA content completely.

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You read my mind, man. It’s 100% what I think about it. I’ve quitted playing this 1.7 with LoA on since it makes no sense to me for the same reasons. It’s unclear and pain to play, Pandorians are bit harder than they used to be, which is fun, but LoA makes me think that it’s overcomplicated and artificial comparing to the rest of the game. I’ve finished this game like 3-4 times on the highest difficulty, so that’s not a noobish trashtalk from me. I’m going to wait until developers reconsider what they actually were up to - Blood & Titanium feels poor for a DLC and the latest DLC seems unrewarding and no fun to me.

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Personally I found the Hopllites (the little ancient guardians) not that hard to fight. Compared to the high evolved Arthrons or Tritons they have around half of their HP (260? vs 440) and not that much more armor. Their shield is not harder as the ones the evolved Arthrons get and their main weapon hits hard but not that accurate as the sniper rifles Tritons use (and you can easily avoid hits just by breaking LOS).
The big one can be crippled pretty easy by shooting his legs, when all 4 are down he cannot move any more. If you get a nice aim on his ‘Head’ ball then you can disable his laser (that is even more inaccurate then the ones of the Hoplites, but also hits much harder).

At least, I enjoy these fights and for me the ancient weapons are worth it, maybe that should be the main reason to do this?

Combats with Ancients are ok, if you handle them carefully. Reward (weapon) is also ok I think. But for me cost and necessary operations/preparations for this, on the geoscape part, are kind of discouraging to touch DLC content.

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Mining part should be auto and rather then having 3 mining and 3 unneccecary loa points, all 6 should be able to mined so 2 per material.

And why 3? Why so much? One special mine which is hard to get would be enough.

Even new enemies are hard at first then easier as you get the tactic, yes if you can kill them, you can already win the game.

The reward weapons are very bad s type. No minigun, no assault rifle, no pistol, no pd, no armor no special mod.
2 melee, 1 shotgun, 1 crossbow, 1 cannon. 5 weapon are all short range usable with efficiency. No medium range and 1 long range.

I am a sniper and minigun freak so I go for sniper but it’s soooo long, hard and expensive to do.

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Yeah, I can see that you can beat the Ancients enemies with good equipment and a lot of care.

But surely if you can do that, you can do every other mission in the game already? I just cleared a Citadel on day 30 and it was SO much easier than the Living Crystal Quarry.

Right now I’ve got the choice of sinking even more resources into the LoA stuff or just giving up on them and focusing on conventional tech instead. And the conventional tech path just seems . . . kind of better?

Does the LoA content offer anything beyond a few special weapons at the end of a long quest chain? It’s going to be a bit of a disappointment if there’s nothing else.

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The ‘cannon’ is a grenade launcher and also over the top as the other weapons. The shotgun is more mid than closerange with its 14 ER and the crossbow half of a sniper rifle with 41 ER. The sniper rifle is nice … and over the top, better than the ‘engame’ virophage Gungnir SR.

I’m also missing a Mini- or machinegun, that would be nicer for rme than 2 totally OP melee weapons, one would be more than enough.
PDW? Well, we have the Gorgon EYE-A, so here I’m somewhat happy that they not giving to us something that is even better than this (best AR in the game :wink: ).
AR? Yes, yes, yes, the same as with MGs, why there is none and why such a focus on melee?

Then I will get the grenade launcher. Gorgon is crazy… My heavy got minigun and gorgon and you can guess which is better. I just hold minigun for rage burst. Once I just get 4-6 tile range of a chiron with this heavy and I rage-burst. I forgot to change weapon to Deceptor. Gorgon hit for %60 hp of the chiron when minigun would about %80 max… I even did not notice the damage so much but i thought “deceptor should hit a bit more… why”… then I see that I got gorgon… Another "deceptor is fine, maybe it should be buffed a bit " moment from deceptor fans… :slight_smile:

Still I would expect 2-3 more gun types with a patch for this DLC… even still they are not needed for game, at least we will have a purpose to do that many things… they will just model some guns more… not a big deal…

I think you will be more than happy with this, 50% more damage (90), +20 shred (30) compared to Goliath, same range and splash and the best: no longer ammo needed.

As I said, OP as hell all these new toys. :wink:

I will post the report that I shared after playing close to 200h LOTA , what do you think?

Beginning

Project Glory and Saving Helena mission are unlocked too early in the game,
and that mission is not easy at all, also apparently is not fitting with the main story, Lore,
so the beginning is confusing

then, weapons blueprint missions start to pop up, interfiring with other more important tasks and missions at that moment,
if you know about it, you postpone a few days, weeks, but if not it is a waste of time and resources,
because you have to deal with nests, haven defence missions, exploring POIs, activating bases, anyway, it is too much

Collections (blueprints) missions

These are regular maps except first one, with many enemies but not too hard, and yes, you feel that you have to kill a lot humans and mutants to get
just blueprints that actually at that point you don’t understand the future tedious process involved in weapons production,
for many players are just risky missions with 0 return of investment in time and even soldiers lives

Ancient Sites

Very tedious and complicated process, I have had to explain several times all the steps in forum, Discord, social media,
a better explanation and/or tutorial is required.

Archaeology labs, probes, scanning, excavation sites, requiring resources+aircraft to start the excavation,
and then you have to fight Hoplites, Cyclops, after that a manned aircraft just there mining, full time.
And also defend some sites every few days.

I would cut the process, getting rid of excavations process, and that includes days waiting to reveal what exotic material is located there.

Right now I feel the need for 5 aircrafts, 3 squads after mid game + 2 only for mining and those are very expensive if
you don’t want to steal. A couple of aircrafts through alliance, black marcket, rescue mission would be great, even damaged.

Fighting Hoplites and Cyclops

These are complicated missions, players have no idea until the try first assault to the sites. You can’t fight enemies with thick shields, or lot of HP
with only 6-7 soldiers and basic weapons. So this content is better after mid game for sure.

Stealth concept needs to be explained to awake only 1-2 Hoplites each time, and the missions need to be easier if you don’t playe Hero, Legendary
Also, Hoplites animations sometimes are off, moving back and forward without purpose, AI issues I guess

User Interface

This the worst, with so many excavations, new ancient sites pending, controlled by PX, controlled by other forces, with and without your own Guardian,
all over the planet with pink circles, mist repeller circles, aircrafts range circles,
you can’t track what mine, field, quarry or refineries you have or you require at a glance,
we need a dedicated panel with all the info, status, at least like bases have

Bottomline and personal opinion

This is not DCL 1 with 4 missions, 1 building and 9 augmentions, but DLC 2 is big, a great idea for sure,

I am delighted with new maps, gorgeous, best of the game, and music, ambient sounds, so many posibilities with corridors and ground elevation…
I enjoy every mission there

But the experience is ruined when you have to fight Pandoran global threat and at the same time so many tough content,
and players are asking, just for 6 new weapons?

Make the process simpler, better explanations, tutorials, maybe add a shield (orichalcum or living crystal) for a soldier as a reward after conquering a site
or mine/refinery couple, involves the factions, make them stronger if you trade/gift a site under your control, improving their defences.

I see so much effort from the team , I just want people enjoy it, without the frustration and confusion.

12 Likes

This is very very good one. Everything is on point.

This DLC is big as content but small as impact. It’s sad. It should be an arc at mid to late game.

One of the biggest problem is that this is a DLC but not an expansion. I mean, if you had this DLC in main game, you could make the end game much more harder so you would need new gear to handle those end game enemies. Now this DLC is harder then end game but it’s only a choice. It creates an own end game in the main game.

I don’t like to have DLC only to give us something in the main game timeline. For example X-Com 2 and WOC… do you imagine alone xcom 2 without woc now? No… because WOC made it a new XCom main story rather then side elements.

You just can’t add 6 full DLC with it’s own game styles to a game which got already finished timeline. So will we have a DLC which makes PP longer? Like you finish default PP but with a DLC you will continue to play and finish it to finish the main game literally?

As you can already finish the game without both DLC things, then it means those DLC’s are not req for game experience and every DLC will make the game “easier” because as you can get stuff from DLC’s, but the end game will stay same.

This is not right. You can have very simple, little DLC’s with some details but if you got something like LoA sized, this should change the game overall. But if you change then, people who got only main game will suffer because they won’t have things to finish the enchanted story.

There is only one choice left. You need to think PP is a whole game with all the DLC. You won’t think what happens if someone don’t have DLC. Game is enough cheap so there is no reason not to pay some dollars for more DLC to make your game much better.

Bahh another long run… for short, give me a better minigun and I hate evac missions… thx.

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You are mostly on my line with your suggestions/mentions, but I personally really don’t like this comparsion:

WOTC is more XCOM 2.5 than a DLC. Yes, it was announced and selled as DLC but technically it is a full new game for exactly the price of a full new game. If you chose to launch XCOM 2 without WOTC from the launcher it starts from a different folder with different files etc pp.

Try to compare this DLC with the XCOM 2 DLC ‘Chens Gift’ …

I don’t talk about specific DLC, I talk about how to implement them.

This DLC is much more then ‘Chens Gift’ class. Chens Gift could be classify with first DLC but not this. LoA got best items in the game. In a game like PP which you can finish with the default gear, having better items in every way from a DLC is a big deal. LoA does not add a new game design at tactical, it improves it with better gear. So your endgame became much more easier. To balance this, you should buff end game but then you lose your default game…

I tried to say that “think all the 6 DLC together like WOC” and design the game this way. So you can improve it without fear of old versions.

I want a better game and I can pay for more. I just want the devs design the DLC as the whole game rather then little things in the main story. DLC’s should make the main story larger and longer.

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I completely agree, I wish they would go this way and highly integrate this and all upcoming DLCs.

BUT, I also understand that they didn’t go this way. The base game is anything else than round, stable and finished, they definitely have to work on this also in future (Edit: Not everyone has a season pass, is backer or buyer of all DLCs, the base game is buy-able stand alone etc pp). When they now highly integrate the upcoming DLCs into a new game then they have to split their, so I think, small team to support both lines. Then you can buy any DLC separate, so the buyer expect that they also run independent. Then we end up with at least 6 different games? Even more because any combination must also be playable. How should this work?

WOTC has a big studio in their back, it took more than 2 years (?) to complete and anything that was done before for the base game like mods didn’t run with this expansion (excluding DLCs, but AFAIK they have completely overwork them for WOTC). It is a completely other thing what Firaxis has done there.

I don’t underestimate snapshot as they got fund from many places. I am even very happy that they go for epic so they got more money and they can safely work on this game for extended time.

The first xcom style game which get many mid size DLC’s is PP. Because the reasons me and you talked here. You got a finished game, you got the story. And this is not a RPG. You know that when the game will end. At a RPG like fallout, you can just do whatever you want… being Op is not big problem. But here it’s tactical, strategical and got a timer.

It’s hard. They need to update the main game at some point. They need to make some open place for those DLC. So the buyer who likes this genre and PP would by all the DLC… I think most people already paid for those DLC…

For example they can let the game continue with a DLC even the main game ends. To be honest I expect something like that. Or revise whole end game mission. They will do it soon probably with the next 3 DLC. With LoA the end game is much more easier already and there will be 4 of it more. 4. DLC can change the main game dramatically. They should do it sooner or later.

Another important thing is snapshot probably design the game for Steam release too. This 3 DLC were somehow completing the game so even Skies DLC looks like about something different, the game could get a huge changes to prepare for next 3 DLC run with Steam.

I don’t have that high expectations, I think the upcoming 4 DLCs will come more or less in the same form as LoA. I’m very much afraid that we might also have to wait like 2 years before we get something like WOTC (when snapshot gets there) and assume that it will be more PP2 than a DLC.

The game is already full of tons of missions and such. I don’t think they can fit more and more into the same timeline. It’s clearly overwhelming. But we will see… I just want my minigun first then we can wait for others :slight_smile:

DLC 5: Heavier Class

Heavy class troopers learn different Technics and gears to became real heavy! They won’t wear cloth anymore! And their holy weapons will be revealed!

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:rofl:
Yeah, I will take it :slight_smile:

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Oh @drages don’t kill us by laughter :joy:

I agree with you that LotA could’ve been an expansion instead of a DLC, it’s great feedback, maybe they can think about it for upcoming big dlcs. It feels rushed as everything PP in general and probably was, as Snapshot seems not to have the amount of resources needed to output what they want in the schedule they need. I’m glad they’re committed to continuous improvement and it’s mostly a waiting case for us, the game is getting better and better with each patch.

From the integration of DLCs perspective… reading what you said about LotA (I’m yet to do my first excavation), I can’t help it but think of “post-endgame” content like the Weapons from the Final Fantasy series. However, as you said, the game should’ve a “continue” button after the last mission then, where you could keep playing your sandbox. On the other hand, since exploration is limited and usually finished before the campaign ends, this would not make much sense, i.e., it would not be fun enough.

So, I guess either exploration is reworked again (I would love free flight, not chained to PoI’s) and you can discover things just by flying by as in the original x-com, and then we can have post-endgame content, or you adjust LotA and any DLC to not be/feel like post-endgame content.

There’s also the possibility of the DLC being seen as “pay to win” as both of the current ones give OP gear. They can be a little bit better, but just a little bit. They should mostly offer new sidegrades with different mechanics.

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I mean that, they need to continue to the scenario after the ending we have and put a bigger harder ending. So the ending we have will be just a story mission and game will go on harder and tougher. For example we will go for seas now.