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Sheepy

More flexible recruit system?

7 posts in this topic

Compare with other strategic changes, this should be pretty minor.  Thanks XCOM 2 for inspiration.

Problems:

1. The candidates do not improve with time. New recruits take forever, if ever, to catch up to veterans.
2. Do the candidates all die at end of month?  Why do they all disappear so fast?
3. The recruit list is full of candidates we don't want, that we cannot remove, but we get free candidates whenever we hire.

Proposal for problem 1:

1. Make new candidates' stats improves with time. A training system may be needed to keep idle soldiers competitive,
    but they did stay in a safe base as the world went on fire.
2. Make veterans available at higher cost, as the game progress.

Proposal for problem 2 & 3:

1. Let the player get a new candidate by rejecting someone, perhaps at a moderate interview cost but with some free monthly quota.
2. To keep the pressure up, may be each candidate has a 10% chance to disappear at end of month.

Edited by Sheepy
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The Disgaea game has a system that might help with the first point. If X-2 has some sort of soldier perk system, along with stats, then the soldiers you hire could have stat increases over time, but still lack perks. They won't be entirely useless, but they will still lack notability.

Regarding point 2, I think X-1's system is already an improvement over the Xcom games. In the original game, you would hire a bunch, then fire most until you got the guys you want. It all comes down to the fact that there are soldiers you want, but are relying on the throw of a dice to generate soldiers. Maybe you could "request" or "head hunt" for soldiers proficient in certain stats, at a premium.

Point 3 is interesting. Being able to refresh the list at will would allow players to min-max their soldiers, at the cost of time and frustration. But if the list if full of nobodies, your options are limited. A whole minigame could be planned around this mechanic, where you have to leverage your political weight in order to draw more recruits from countries or something, but I think in the big picture, the X-1 system is a good compromise. Maybe you could build a building that serves as a recruitment facility of some sort (think of Men in Black), that doubles or triples the length of the list. Or maybe each additional base lengthens the list.

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I would say:

Point 1:  Maybe researches that permit increased stats, or only if nations really like you do they offer their prime soldiery?  Or different pools, with different costs.  Maybe mercenaries who are effective, but cost you political hatred of nations they've committed war crimes against?  

Maybe the soldiers can be "sent to training camp" for a fee and come back next month with slightly improved stats?  This also largely (2) keeps them alive and (3) clears the slot for a new soldier.  It also (partially) provides a mechanic for training soldiers out of combat addressed in other threads.

Point 2:  You think those men and women have nothing better to do than sit and wait for you?  The nations of the WORLD are competing to hire competent soldiery, who, incidentally, are dying by the scores if not hundreds.  You want them there for more than a month?  Pay them a retainer fee, and hope they don't die doing side jobs with the world's military.

Point 3:  I heartily second an expanding list with technology/national support.  Maybe an increased cost to hire to a base from other than local soldiery?  Maybe each soldier "rejected" decreases that nation's enthusiasm for XNO (Xenonaut Organization) by a small amount?

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I like this, training soldiers sounds like a good idea.. in the original xcom for example, PSI training was always annoying because it took your primary squad out of the fight, but being able to stat train normal rookies would be great.

What would be even better is being able to choose what stat you want to focus on and for it to cost extra money.

Training should be relatively expensive though and take some time and maybe be capped / balanced based on combat experience / rank?

Or additionally you could have a training facility that takes up 4 squares and is able to only train 8 soldiers at a time or something to avoid having too many overskilled newbies.

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On 06/02/2017 at 7:55 AM, Sheepy said:

Make veterans available at higher cost, as the game progress

Why not allow this from the beginning? Make the soldier purchase options relative to experience. If you want to invest in soldiers early on then you have that freedom but you wont as easily be able to afford R&D, base expansion etc. A top tier soldier represents many missions worth of experience so should cost a fortune, the kind of price you can't fork out early on in the game. But as you have more resources later on, a high rank soldier can be replaced. Making the soldier cost relative is better than leaving it all up to the random numbers. Also, depending how affordable soldiers are, it might encourage the player to allow a little turnover in the roster rather than keeping the original set of troopers alive throughout.

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3 hours ago, Ninothree said:

Why not allow this from the beginning? Make the soldier purchase options relative to experience.

The same reason that the rank of XCOM (2) rewarded/offered soldiers is associated with game time: to preserve the power balance of the game.  Story-wise, you can imagine recruit rank as experience against aliens; in the beginning everyone has zero experience fighting aliens, so all recruits start at zero rank when the game starts.

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I think what I'm trying to get at is that the balance can still be achieved if the cost of soldiers is set correctly. So, if you buy a major at the beginning of your playthrough, then you'll be set back so much that you wont be able to afford radars or new aircraft etc - though you still have that choice if it is what you want (it'll just mean easier ground combat and hard geoscape progression). The pricing shouldn't be static either: as countries' relations with you change over time, the costs of the soldiers they could go up or down. So, making replacements wouldn't be devastatingly expensive but you wouldn't rage quit if you lost some of your A-Team.

Were it possible, I think that I'd choose to recruit at least a mid-level soldier or two early on so that in that first mission, at least one of your squad can hit something other than a tree.

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