Chris

Xenonauts-2 October Update

119 posts in this topic

Hey, all, super late to the party but I'm very excited to hear that Xenonauts 2 is in the works!

Re: making air combat more "tactical", have you considered a turn-based maneuver system a la Steambirds or X-wing?  Each fighter could have a different set of maneuvers available to it, depending on how its loadout or role.  I feel like this would be a nice compromise between the frantic action and high granularity of the X1 air combat interface, and just axing the interception game completely.

Looking forward to X2!

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Interesting take - I think it'll be more interesting than just "Xenonauts with better graphics and some QoL fixes".  I'm personally a huge fan of JA2, so having things go in that direction sound good to me. Since we're going with 3d models this time and don't have the same issues pre-rendering animation frames, why not have a prone mode eh? You could have it that certain heavy weapons can only be effectively used crouching or prone, which would increase the balancing options. But minor issue.

I think having a rating in different fields makes sense (combat, technical, science, etc) - to riff off of previous posters I think still keeping sub-stats under those is a good idea though.  I'm not against streamlining / simplifying where it makes sense, but I don't think we need to go simpler than new XCOM - it's proven that their level of complexity can get mass market adoption. One issue would be balancing out each field rating vs specific stats under it - what if someone has a science rating of 3, but is maxed on medical but little research, should they be able to use a prototype laser weapon?

To borrow from Fallout or JA2, what if each (rank) of a field lets you assign a "perk" that acts as a bonus.  These would stack with modifiers from armor and weapons while still allowing for a personal "feeling" for each soldier.  So say each soldier has an option for fixed or semi-randomized stats (you'll need some display of movement and TUs etc if for nothing else they show up in combat and when you have some armor that modifies them), but they get a slight boost in relevant stats when you level up a "field", plus get to choose a "perk" to go along with it.  So we're going more like nu-xcom in that you get a boost in stats when you level up vs using a skill, but they're tied to profeciencies in a field vs an overall rank.  Perks also feel a bit more personal than numbers IMO, seeing someone has a profeciency or skill rather than just a higher number.

Having a lot of pre-made characters also allows for some interesting/quirky combinations of perks, and less power-gaming of "optimal" perks (though it'd be fun to have some all low level ranking characters that you can then define better as well). Someone with science perks for medicine, but a combat perk for melee due to them being a knife fanatic or whatever. One of the best things about JA2 was how characters had "personality" - without voice acting that'd be harder, but some actual sense of personality / backstory, hopefully some interaction between them goes a ways towards that.

Overview / overall stats (could be more or less). Could be static and only effected by starting stats (semi-random or not, config option), or could have small bonuses when leveling up relative ratings.

Health (armor, perk)
Efficiency (time units - combat rating, perk, armor)
Fitness (exhaustion mechanic - overall ratings, perk?)
Accuracy (combat rating + perks, weapon mods?)
Morale (combat rating + operative rating, perks)
Research (science rating, perks)
Medical (science rating, perks)
Development (technical rating, perks)
Explosives  (technical rating, perks)
Infiltration  (operative rating, perks)
Persuasion (operative rating, perks)

Overall fields and perks (10 in each rank, each rank boosts relevant stats and every other grants use of a perk. 5 in each rank, only perk each time?). You can also have some perks that apply negative and positive effects, have certain ones unlocked at certain ranks. Sort of a skilltree but less forced imo.

COMBAT RATING (each time someone levels up they get more accuracy, time units, etc)

marksmanship (tactical bonus to hit with projectile weapons)
sniper (tactical bonus to hit targets x+ tiles away)
cqb (tactical bonus to hit targets x- tiles away)
martial (tactical bonus to melee attacks)
resilient (tactical health bonus, faster wound recovery)
weightlifting (bonus to carrying capacity, melee, less time units)
distance runner (bonus to time units, less carrying capacity)

SCIENCE RATING  (each time someone levels up they get more medical, research, etc)

physics (strategic bonus to research, bonus to... thrown item accuracy? idk lol)
chemistry (strategic bonus to research, bonus to chem weapon use)
medical (strategic/tactical use)
adaptive (gets to use new weapons with a -1 to science rating)
self-medicating (bonus to exhaustion, more susceptible to toxins in field)
drug-resistant (less likely to be harmed by gas/poison, self-buff items less effective)

TECHNICAL RATING

prototyping/manufacturing (strategic use)
explosives (tactical use, manufacturing bonus?)
mechanic/repair (strategic and tactical use)
adaptive (tactical bonus to using enemies equipment in field)

OPERATIVE RATING

stealthy (tactical bonus to not be spotted)
recruiter/mentor (strategic bonus for recruitment, funds, etc)
charismatic (tactical morale to nearby soldiers)
cryptography (bonuses to finding new targets, gathering resources from raids?)
assassin (tactical bonus to hit with silenced weapons / throwing knives / etc, minus to persuasion)
pacifist (bonus to persuasion, non-lethal weapons, etc minus to lethal weapon accuracy and morale loss after a kill)

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On 13.11.2017 at 2:32 PM, Drakon said:

I will concur that making units bullet-spongy isn't necessarily the most beautiful approach to solve this issue, but it is a simple one.

On 14.11.2017 at 0:39 AM, Conductiv said:

about bosses, well there are many ways to do bosses or big baddies, not all encompass some dude with the supernatural ability to take enough bullets to the face to sink a battleship.

I fail to see what point you are trying to make. Enlighten me.

 

On 14.11.2017 at 0:39 AM, Conductiv said:

this doesn't mean that supersonic flight at extreme altitude with stealth technology would be extremely unlikely to get spotted during daytime as well as night-time.

Just to sate my personal curiosity: assuming that transport is for practical purposes invisible to radar, doesn't have a scramjet style fiery exhaust trail, and is flying at night, at an altitude of 26000 m ( ~ 85000 feet) or higher, what exactly would be the likely scenario and methods how this craft would be spotted with 1980s technology and standard behaviour?

 

On 14.11.2017 at 0:39 AM, Conductiv said:

funny thing about turn based tactical games where you build a team, your team is usually better then the random dudes you recruit from the roster. (...)

If you actually read what i wrote, i pointed out it compounds a balance issue. Essentially you get rewarded not for handling your units well, but just for having them in your employment for longer. Not a big deal, but you need to take it into account balance wise, because it will lead to exactly the scenario you mentioned: newly hired troops being just left at home training for a while, because they are of barely any use in the field and mostly just likely to die. The gap in efficiency between a newly hired unit and a veteran will continue to widen as the game progresses and the toughness of the opponents increases. Ultimately this tends to drive the game in a direction where the end game is either trivial or impossible. I've written a longer post in the Xenonauts-2 General Discussion subforum on one possible solution to the balancing issue, but suffice to say, the problem is actually not trivial, and adding mechanics that aggravate it doesn't really help. Can still be a good choice if the mechanic adds so much to the gameplay to be worth the drawback, but it is worth a lot more thought than you seem to be willing to give it.

 

On 14.11.2017 at 0:39 AM, Conductiv said:

I haven't really read anything that hinted towards the total game length,

Well, read my previous post then.

Edited by Drakon
Typo.

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2 hours ago, Drakon said:

I fail to see what point you are trying to make. Enlighten me.

I don't like bullet sponges as bosses, and even though it is simple I would prefer some other method of not getting the boss instantly capped.

Quote

 

Just to sate my personal curiosity: assuming that transport is for practical purposes invisible to radar, doesn't have a scramjet style fiery exhaust trail, and is flying at night, at an altitude of 26000 m ( ~ 85000 feet) or higher, what exactly would be the likely scenario and methods how this craft would be spotted with 1980s technology and standard behaviour?

 

about as well as it would be spotted during daytime...not. hence the reason for only flying by night is from my point of view purely mechanical.

Quote

If you actually read what i wrote, i pointed out it compounds a balance issue. Essentially you get rewarded not for handling your units well, but just for having them in your employment for longer. Not a big deal, but you need to take it into account balance wise, because it will lead to exactly the scenario you mentioned: newly hired troops being just left at home training for a while, because they are of barely any use in the field and mostly just likely to die. The gap in efficiency between a newly hired unit and a veteran will continue to widen as the game progresses and the toughness of the opponents increases. Ultimately this tends to drive the game in a direction where the end game is either trivial or impossible. I've written a longer post in the Xenonauts-2 General Discussion subforum on one possible solution to the balancing issue, but suffice to say, the problem is actually not trivial, and adding mechanics that aggravate it doesn't really help. Can still be a good choice if the mechanic adds so much to the gameplay to be worth the drawback, but it is worth a lot more thought than you seem to be willing to give it.

I know what you mean, I also know that if you make them easily replaceable the veteran soldiers will have practically no value, and this is probably the main reason the described problem is not trivial.

now why I'm not spending a wall of text on it (and was really just kidding around with it) is because it has all been done before, there is no reason to re-invent the wheel

Quote

  Well, read my previous post then.

you got me there you joker, I was thinking about a dev making any hints towards the total game length and since Chris didn't make any comments regarding that in this thread.. 

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Will there be a release of the game this year? I apologize if somewhere I missed the answer to this question.

 

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On 26-10-2017 at 10:04 PM, endersblade said:

nothing that this post has to do with

Wont xhange opinion and results anymore, but i will post mine.

I like the idea of having to test actual prototypes of new weapon types. night flown missions are a ok.

Every, single, other, feature. The finger with it all!!!

Firstly, i dont care about aliens being immersively strong, i hate you taking up ideas from "xcom"2

Why? " xcom"2? Because your not fighting aliens, you are fighting reskinned soldiers in a dull storyline. It simply does not feel like fighting aliens anymore.

If you really want OP aliens, start it like this: the scouts have small crew space, go fight 3-4 OP's.

 

The rogue idea is already taken and i would gladly take the game of the competitor any day if you go the same route

Its not some random dude, should not be some random dude with an m16 taking down aliens, it's the darn kind that fights along side geniusses who create marvellous lazerweapons in a matter of months. Who calls engineers who create those lazerguns in days "barbaric donkeys" these men are the best of the best with the best gear earth has to offer. Not to forget the fact you have acces to ww2 veterans, men who have seen dark stuff in their lives. Not "some random dude"!!!

If you want realism, make those scientists take a year to invent lazer weapons first, o wait! No, wed already lose by then! Because thats the cold truth. Humans would stand no chance vs extraterrestrials.

 

Good day

Edited by jevry
why was a quote in my post wtf?

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"Yes, it would be theoretically possible to run out of soldiers if you're too careless, but I doubt it'll come up. If you're spending all your money on staff and then immediately getting them killed I doubt you'll get far enough into the campaign to exhaust the roster. "

bit sad about that part. i've always, both in the original x-com and xenonauts, had the opinion that it's not a proper campaign if your casualties are not in, or at least approaching, triple digits. that was my main gripe with the remake that made it feel "not x-com".
sad, but it's understandable. most people don't play that way and the remakes sold well with their idea of "10 guys versus entire race". at least if the aliens get limited in number it won't be as jarring as in the remake

but x-commie or not, the remakes were good games and i'll be buying xenonauts 2 too on the basis that you'll probably make a good game (based on 1), however much you deviate from my personal ideal of what makes a game "x-com":)

(couldn't get normal quote thing to work)

Edited by shanadir

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1 hour ago, shanadir said:

"Yes, it would be theoretically possible to run out of soldiers if you're too careless, but I doubt it'll come up. If you're spending all your money on staff and then immediately getting them killed I doubt you'll get far enough into the campaign to exhaust the roster. "

bit sad about that part. I've always, both in the original x-com and Xenonauts, had the opinion that it's not a proper campaign if your casualties are not in, or at least approaching, triple digits. that was my main gripe with the remake that made it feel "not x-com".
sad, but it's understandable. most people don't play that way and the remakes sold well with their idea of "10 guys versus entire race". at least if the aliens get limited in number it won't be as jarring as in the remake

but x-commie or not, the remakes were good games and i'll be buying Xenonauts 2 too on the basis that you'll probably make a good game (based on 1), however much you deviate from my personal ideal of what makes a game "x-com":)

I think it's more of "realism" thing here, especially since Chris & co. are wanting to add some elements inspired from "Jagged Alliance"-games.

I mean, what kind of sane man would join a "suicide-squad" to begin with, especially in case of "Xenonauts (2)" in which the team of more of smaller vigilante-group (at least intially, and most likely more incognito "on paper")?

 

Quote

"I'm not interested,son! I was fifth up the beach at Normandy! I don't think we lost half the men you have!"
-Murray "Pops" McGillicutty's contract refusal due to a high death ratio

 

It's going to be interesting to see how much depth we are able to put into the mechanics; maybe it could only be "lore-fluff" also as in having some in-game-NPCs spreading rumours and so forth depending how you play the "shadow-war"
("I've heard of this group that abducts and sends these unlucky fellas right into the middle of military complexes strapped with belts of grenades"
- murmurs heard or read in some of info-sources "Xenonauts" are reliant of, when the casualties are super-high).

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So, as mentioned above, most of this is just ideas at this point - exactly how it works is always changing, as small changes to the way things fit together have massive effects on how the strategy layer and setting work.

One of the things I've potentially changed my mind on since the initial post is the whole "how do you account for casualties" thing ... because if you have unique characters, you need to ensure the player has enough of them to replace at least a few of their losses. That therefore means you need quite a few people who are essentially duplicates of one another with only very minor changes, which bloats the roster. And if you have a bloated roster then you're trying to display 40 faces on screen at the same time and the interface becomes harder to read and you can display less useful information about each person.

Perhaps a better approach would just be to offer the player a number of different archetypes to hire. The most basic form of this is just to have maybe 10 "classes" of person you can hire as many of as you want, who have different starting stats / traits. For example a Sniper has a higher accuracy and is more proficient with rifles and sniper rifles, whereas the generic Infantry guy is an all-rounder proficient with rifles and medikits, and the Assault guy has more TU and proficiency with rifles and shotguns, or whatever. This isn't a set class like in XCOM as all those people can then learn or be trained in all the skills available to everyone else, it just gives you a bit more choice about who you hire ... and you could expand it by making available better starting soldiers etc for a higher price, etc.

The other potential route you could take is have a certain number of available slots. For instance, there's 20 different soldiers you can hire, and one of them is a sniper called Scope with a particular set of traits. If Scope (or anyone else) is killed then after a few days you can hire a replacement, who has a different face but is still called Scope and has identical starting stats to the original. However, you can never have two Scopes at the same time. Basically the idea here is that "Scope" is a role rather than a specific person; it's like in the Bond movies there is always a "Q" and an "M" who have a particular job even if the people themselves change.

I like the second idea thematically but it'd probably be a bit annoying in practice. You'd be limited to having only one sniper (unless I add more and get the "roster bloat" problem mentioned above), but if he's killed then you can hire a replacement in a few days ... so why can you only have one sniper? I suspect the first idea would work better in practice.

The other problem I'm yet to fully solve is how you can properly make multi-class people useful. Soldiers are only rarely out on a mission, and they don't do much except train in the meantime. But if a soldier / scientist spends his days in the labs, how does he have time to train? And if he can't train at the same speed as a normal soldier, he's going to be a sub-optimal choice. Squaring that circle is proving a little difficult. I've got a few more ideas, but have to see how it all develops.

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you could maybe include knowledge about bullet drop and air/wind interference for certain weapons in the scientist stuff. so people with some sciency knowledge will be better at very long range or with grenade launchers and such. not that a lab rat would be better than a trained soldier, but sciency stuff could help a bit.

or make it so that, as a shadowy organization, getting alien loot back, especially large loot like an alien body or navigation panel, is quite tricky. but if you bring a scientist you can get some data from studying it in the field. maybe you get more if you bring it to a proper lab, but you never know if you're going to come across something new.

maybe scientists could be good at looking at new alien species and give you a guess at their strengths and weaknesses, though that would only be very useful for the first few runs until you the player know it already...

 

just some ideas for useful field boffins

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On 12/6/2017 at 4:11 PM, Chris said:

So, as mentioned above, most of this is just ideas at this point - exactly how it works is always changing, as small changes to the way things fit together have massive effects on how the strategy layer and setting work.

One of the things I've potentially changed my mind on since the initial post is the whole "how do you account for casualties" thing ... because if you have unique characters, you need to ensure the player has enough of them to replace at least a few of their losses. That therefore means you need quite a few people who are essentially duplicates of one another with only very minor changes, which bloats the roster. And if you have a bloated roster then you're trying to display 40 faces on screen at the same time and the interface becomes harder to read and you can display less useful information about each person.

Perhaps a better approach would just be to offer the player a number of different archetypes to hire. The most basic form of this is just to have maybe 10 "classes" of person you can hire as many of as you want, who have different starting stats / traits. For example a Sniper has a higher accuracy and is more proficient with rifles and sniper rifles, whereas the generic Infantry guy is an all-rounder proficient with rifles and medikits, and the Assault guy has more TU and proficiency with rifles and shotguns, or whatever. This isn't a set class like in XCOM as all those people can then learn or be trained in all the skills available to everyone else, it just gives you a bit more choice about who you hire ... and you could expand it by making available better starting soldiers etc for a higher price, etc.

The other potential route you could take is have a certain number of available slots. For instance, there's 20 different soldiers you can hire, and one of them is a sniper called Scope with a particular set of traits. If Scope (or anyone else) is killed then after a few days you can hire a replacement, who has a different face but is still called Scope and has identical starting stats to the original. However, you can never have two Scopes at the same time. Basically the idea here is that "Scope" is a role rather than a specific person; it's like in the Bond movies there is always a "Q" and an "M" who have a particular job even if the people themselves change.

I like the second idea thematically but it'd probably be a bit annoying in practice. You'd be limited to having only one sniper (unless I add more and get the "roster bloat" problem mentioned above), but if he's killed then you can hire a replacement in a few days ... so why can you only have one sniper? I suspect the first idea would work better in practice.

The other problem I'm yet to fully solve is how you can properly make multi-class people useful. Soldiers are only rarely out on a mission, and they don't do much except train in the meantime. But if a soldier / scientist spends his days in the labs, how does he have time to train? And if he can't train at the same speed as a normal soldier, he's going to be a sub-optimal choice. Squaring that circle is proving a little difficult. I've got a few more ideas, but have to see how it all develops.

first option is more intuitive, it also allows the player to set up his own teams and doesn't get straight jacketed into "must hire these guys to get a workable team" scenario.

the multi-class problem is what I'm most worried about...as the most common solution would be to make specialist classes barely more effective then a jack-of-all-trades resulting in the optimum being a team macguyver. needless to say..I want specialists to be worth it.

this can be partially solved by not strictly dividing jobs into combat/science/engineering jobs..a dedicated combat medic might be leaning more to science (as he will be adept in autopsies and studies with regards to compounds/techniques used for disabling) meaning that doing science would also boost the medic stat (it is notable that the medic stat does not increase a troopers killing potential...and hence does not thread on the more combat training based day-jobs) this can be done with various side tasks (hacking/sabotage)

 

Quote

 

you could maybe include knowledge about bullet drop and air/wind interference for certain weapons in the scientist stuff. so people with some sciency knowledge will be better at very long range or with grenade launchers and such. not that a lab rat would be better than a trained soldier, but sciency stuff could help a bit.

or make it so that, as a shadowy organization, getting alien loot back, especially large loot like an alien body or navigation panel, is quite tricky. but if you bring a scientist you can get some data from studying it in the field. maybe you get more if you bring it to a proper lab, but you never know if you're going to come across something new.

maybe scientists could be good at looking at new alien species and give you a guess at their strengths and weaknesses, though that would only be very useful for the first few runs until you the player know it already...

 

just some ideas for useful field boffins

 

bullet trajectories etc are distinctly soldier tasks, however finding the nice pieces of loot etc are the engineers suits (material properties, construction methods, suitable stuff to reverse engineer), while hacking panels might be more science-y (cryptology, sifting data for useful numbers or coordinates) improved loot and intel gains might be a suitable benefit of fielding these people...however, they should have a few more utility added benefits (as having just economical benefits to fielding the units makes little sense) . this is mostly difficult with regards to the engineering job, as building stuff mid-combat seems unlikely, so far the only plausible option I can come up with is sabotage an action that might disable some aspects of a ship/base without actually damaging that component (blowing it up would probably be faster..but loud and obvious).

point is that if a commander wants to field these people he should have another job for them in mind then shooting/blowing up aliens/collaborators (this is extremely important, if a scientist becomes better then a soldier at killing, soldiers become moot so the benefits of these disciplines should not involve weapons handling or improvements) . medics, hackers, spies, saboteurs etc...and on the base these relevant skills should be trained in the science, communication or engineering discipline. 

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you could also take a page from the UFO series of trainings and stats, although i don't think you should do exactly that. though they didn't have scientists in combat, they had various skill stats(science, observation, long/short range shooting, melee etc) based on stats (strength, agility, intelligence etc) you increase every time soldiers lvl up.

like i said, probably shouldn't do exactly that but that sounds to be the vague area you're aiming at

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On 16.11.2017 at 4:53 PM, Conductiv said:

now why I'm not spending a wall of text on it (and was really just kidding around with it) is because it has all been done before, there is no reason to re-invent the wheel

I do not consider myself to be particularily well versed in this game genre, so my question to you (and any other forum posters who feel like replying) would be: which games have solved the problem of cumulative success advantages elegantly? Because i myself know none, and i would be interested in looking at how other people approached the issue.

 

On 6.12.2017 at 4:11 PM, Chris said:

One of the things I've potentially changed my mind on since the initial post is the whole "how do you account for casualties" thing ...

Just a theoretical suggestion: if you do like the idea of having individual characters, you could make it so that adding new hireable individuals to the roster costs resources. I personally do not really have an issue with not all Xenonauts runs being equal in difficulty - to some degree you get that anyways with just one random roll whether your soldiers manage the reflex check before the alien throws a grenade or not, and the results are probably more drastic than which starting stats your characters have (unless you plan on having them differ vastly). So you could make it that you have 20 individuals for hire from the start, and adding a random new person to the list of hireable individuals costs a little bit of money. This way the player himself chooses how large the list of character dossiers he wants to read through should be, and if he keeps adding more characters, he'll eventually just have to leaf through several pages of dossiers (adding a new button for "next page" only if necessary). If you can reasonably assume that amongst 20 characters the suiteable replacement for someone who died can be found, then the slightly awkward task of having to compare stats from two different pages is left up to those who want it.

I'm afraid i do not quite understand the math behind what exactly you are trying to do enough to give a more specific or useful suggestion, but that's at least a thought one could play around with.

 

 

On 7.12.2017 at 10:29 PM, Conductiv said:

this is mostly difficult with regards to the engineering job

Examples: jam enemy radio to delay reinforcements (anyone can jam a radio, but an engineer might be able to do it in a way so that it looks more like a technical malfunction and people aren't immediately alerted that something is amiss), blow up walls to create new avenues of approach (typical combat engineer job, because you don't really want some grunt choosing a wall that is still necessary for the structural integrity of the building), quickly build new bridges from prefabricated parts for new avenues of approach, assembling a large and somewhat complex weapon (think stationary plasma cannon or similar, parts already built in engineering lab but transported in individual pieces to the field, since no soldier could carry the entire gun), ...

Main issue with that is that each of these needs to be coded and tested, which drains resources from other things that could be implemented in Xenonauts 2. You could start a poll in the forums whether people would prefer a better system for grenade evasion as suggested by Shaman or rather several different interesting in game tasks that engineers or scientists can do in the field ... i personally am very wary of just asking users what they want, because usually they do not actually know what will benefit them, and only figure out that what they claimed would be spectacularily welcome in a new program is actually useless and ineffective after it's been implemented. Either way, i can easily understand why the people at Goldhawk would be hesitant to divert as many resources as would be necessary to implementing the interesting combat tasks for non-soldiers that you would like to see.

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well i still have mixed feelings about this game. but i will take turn again to talk and stuff...

so i like the idea that a scientist can come with you on the field to do some more science risking a scientist his life in reward for more science.

i also think about the class idea, how about for example tanky person's who are advised to be used with either shields or MGs/rocket launchers. acurate guys for example sniper's and rocket launchers. and fast guys for shotguns and assault rifles. i like that idea. okay next part contains usefull ideas

again, i hate the shadow war theme. so please just don't. but if you want to lay low a bit more an idea might be that sometimes after you capture an ufo you put the area under lockdown and stuff, big white screens covering sight, you can't transport the ufo to base because lack of equipment and it would raise to much attention, whenever a civilian would pass by they would be scared of by patroling guards. you know the the situation i am talking about, you can probably even imagine it in your head. but what would be cool is that sometimes this research site could be attacked be a nearby ufo. meaning you have to defend fragile equipment and the more is destroyed the more science is lost.

i would like this idea over the rescue vip's or fighting human or even human-like creatures like in xcom. because again, i dont want xcom, i want a unique alien fighty off defense game.

im okay with partial shadowy organisation but go more fbi or cia secret level than going xcom 2 level.

also an idea might be to unravel part of the map but not uncover shadows. you do fly over with a helicopter remember? you can look outside of the windows.

 

another idea could be perhaps to take a moraly cruel route, when for example in the aftermath of a terror attack you have to kill off any witnesses and make it appear to be a horrible massacre by some terrorist organisation, or a meteorite strike. make a late game event be 9/11 but caused by aliens? eh? eh? no? okay...

later on mind erasing devices could be used to make it less cruel since th whole alien have psi abilities and stuff... it could even be used as an advanced stun grenade

 

more idea, you know that in xenonauts 1 you sometimes fought in a military base? any surviving soldiers could be press ganged into your crew instead of killing them off/mind wiping them.

they would start with advanced combat knowlege depending on where the camp was located. it would be higher if for example vietnam was the where the aliens crashed.

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5 hours ago, Ninothree said:

Why kill them? Instead, capture them and fill 'em full of psychedelics so no one believes any of their rantings https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_MKUltra

because that would be risky. if people are already slightly suspecting aliens mad people will start to be believed more. because it will make their guesses sound more plausable

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Posted (edited)

I know this thread is a few months old now and it's probably too late, but i signed up here just to give my thoughts on this. I really, really don't like the sound of these changes, i think they're taking away what was great about the first game and the XCOM 1/EU theme.

The main issue i have is with the theme itself. The idea of a secret elite organization being created in order to prepare for a threat that seems incomprehensibly powerful was a significant part of what made those games appealing. It was the idea of your organization is the last line of defense with the rest of the world failing to adequately deal with the problem, as for them it was a sudden unexpected event, so your task to raise an army specifically equipped to fight the aliens all the while trying to hold back the escalating invasion however you can felt like the stakes were very high, the setting revolving around that was a substantial factor in what made the game what it was. It was a sense of basically "Earth's already lost, it's a race to buy more time until you can find a way to defeat before it's too late". Xenonauts having that idea set within the Cold War made it even more interesting, as it made it more like the Cold War itself was a cover in some ways and the real threat was the impending alien invasion.

Changing all that to two secret groups fighting each other feels far too small in comparison and entirely changes the most defining aspect of the game in a negative way, to me. It becomes less "Earth VS Aliens" and more just one organization who don't like aliens vs one group that does like aliens (because they are aliens). In combination the idea of the Aliens not having the power to really do much damage to earth makes them seem like a lot less of a threat, if it's a situation where you could basically replace those aliens with humans and it still feels like it could be a plausible scenario, i don't think that's a good fit for what should be an alien invasion game. It overall feels somewhat similar to the plot of XCOM 2 at a glance, but it isn't really - XCOM 2 was more about you trying to undermine the aliens from the shadows and take back control over the planet as a whole, that was a plot with a bit more weight to it than what appears to be 2 secret groups both fighting over the earth in secret.

Basically, the idea seems to take away the whole "us VS them" theme and replace it with a much less high stakes, more limited plot. The game should be about fighting off a full-scale alien invasion (or in the case of XCOM 2 doing so after they've already won) and having to build up an organization specifically to do that and buy more time until you can win. Going from "There's no one capable of doing this except us" to just "No one knows except us/we can't trust anyone" substantially changes the feel of the game from an Alien invasion simulation to a more mundane spy game with an alien theme slapped ontop. It feels like it's not using the idea of an alien invasion to the best of its ability as it's something that could be done with more typical human characters instead of the aliens and it wouldn't be that much different.

Alongside that the idea of the enemies mostly being alien-controlled humans sounds quite disappointing. Having a variety of different alien species as enemies along with the different technology and ways of fighting them was part of what made the previous games great. Changing that to mostly humans takes away from by making it feel too similar to your own character, it doesn't lend itself to a "Humanity VS alien invaders" theme as much. That feels like something that should be a secondary mission type, not the focus of the game

What i would have liked to have seen would have been a combination of the two things - an alien invasion alongside more secretive spy-like stuff. You could have something like a full-scale invasion as in Xenonauts 1, but that is just a cover for their real intentions. They're invading the planet in order to cause chaos and sow disruption, leaving things open for them to infiltrate and take control themselves as they're secretly searching for something, gathering information behind everyones backs as they're too distracted by the more obvious, visible invasion going on, with the end goal being they find what they're after and then wipe out the planet. So the game would have both the usual style of gameplay, as well as something more along the lines of this new theme and mission style; you're on one hand trying to combat the aliens to help buy time, while also secretly engaging the aliens in the shadows to stop them finding what they're after with you being the only one to know their real intentions. They could be after something like an Ancient artifact that organizations around the world have vague knowledge about, so they're infiltrating them to find clues. Just a quick example but i feel something like that would be a far more interesting take on this sort of idea, at the moment it feels like it's just half a game, in a way.

Basically, i feel like with this theme, the gameplay change and the removal of stuff like air combat and vehicles that i read about, it's moving away from what the game should be about.

 

Edited by TheVoidDragon

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On 4-1-2018 at 3:58 PM, TheVoidDragon said:

I know this thread is a few months old now and it's probably too late, but i signed up here just to give my thoughts on this. I really, really don't like the sound of these changes, i think they're taking away what was great about the first game and the XCOM 1/EU theme.

The main issue i have is with the theme itself. The idea of a secret elite organization being created in order to prepare for a threat that seems incomprehensibly powerful was a significant part of what made those games appealing. It was the idea of your organization is the last line of defense with the rest of the world failing to adequately deal with the problem, as for them it was a sudden unexpected event, so your task to raise an army specifically equipped to fight the aliens all the while trying to hold back the escalating invasion however you can felt like the stakes were very high, the setting revolving around that was a substantial factor in what made the game what it was. It was a sense of basically "Earth's already lost, it's a race to buy more time until you can find a way to defeat before it's too late". Xenonauts having that idea set within the Cold War made it even more interesting, as it made it more like the Cold War itself was a cover in some ways and the real threat was the impending alien invasion.

Changing all that to two secret groups fighting each other feels far too small in comparison and entirely changes the most defining aspect of the game in a negative way, to me. It becomes less "Earth VS Aliens" and more just one organization who don't like aliens vs one group that does like aliens (because they are aliens). In combination the idea of the Aliens not having the power to really do much damage to earth makes them seem like a lot less of a threat, if it's a situation where you could basically replace those aliens with humans and it still feels like it could be a plausible scenario, i don't think that's a good fit for what should be an alien invasion game. It overall feels somewhat similar to the plot of XCOM 2 at a glance, but it isn't really - XCOM 2 was more about you trying to undermine the aliens from the shadows and take back control over the planet as a whole, that was a plot with a bit more weight to it than what appears to be 2 secret groups both fighting over the earth in secret.

Basically, the idea seems to take away the whole "us VS them" theme and replace it with a much less high stakes, more limited plot. The game should be about fighting off a full-scale alien invasion (or in the case of XCOM 2 doing so after they've already won) and having to build up an organization specifically to do that and buy more time until you can win. Going from "There's no one capable of doing this except us" to just "No one knows except us/we can't trust anyone" substantially changes the feel of the game from an Alien invasion simulation to a more mundane spy game with an alien theme slapped ontop. It feels like it's not using the idea of an alien invasion to the best of its ability as it's something that could be done with more typical human characters instead of the aliens and it wouldn't be that much different.

Alongside that the idea of the enemies mostly being alien-controlled humans sounds quite disappointing. Having a variety of different alien species as enemies along with the different technology and ways of fighting them was part of what made the previous games great. Changing that to mostly humans takes away from by making it feel too similar to your own character, it doesn't lend itself to a "Humanity VS alien invaders" theme as much. That feels like something that should be a secondary mission type, not the focus of the game

What i would have liked to have seen would have been a combination of the two things - an alien invasion alongside more secretive spy-like stuff. You could have something like a full-scale invasion as in Xenonauts 1, but that is just a cover for their real intentions. They're invading the planet in order to cause chaos and sow disruption, leaving things open for them to infiltrate and take control themselves as they're secretly searching for something, gathering information behind everyones backs as they're too distracted by the more obvious, visible invasion going on, with the end goal being they find what they're after and then wipe out the planet. So the game would have both the usual style of gameplay, as well as something more along the lines of this new theme and mission style; you're on one hand trying to combat the aliens to help buy time, while also secretly engaging the aliens in the shadows to stop them finding what they're after with you being the only one to know their real intentions. They could be after something like an Ancient artifact that organizations around the world have vague knowledge about, so they're infiltrating them to find clues. Just a quick example but i feel something like that would be a far more interesting take on this sort of idea, at the moment it feels like it's just half a game, in a way.

Basically, i feel like with this theme, the gameplay change and the removal of stuff like air combat and vehicles that i read about, it's moving away from what the game should be about.

 

this showed up in my mail box and to help you and your chances. I completely agree. also wait removing vehicles?! oh they better don't they are the best!

 

and again, i can handle that it is partially secret. but far from fully secret. because secret would automatically mean no more terror attacks on cities amongst other things. and again: if you want a missions where instead of the player has to ACT it has to REACT. make it so that aliens may try to attack research sites for example a crashed alien vessel under quaranteen (since transport is quite difficult especially for the larger craft lets be honest. I mean, those things survive nukes! So you A transport them on a truck which especially the larger ones are too large for, or B take them apart which as one would expect is quite the hussle. oh yeah more reactionary mission ideas, aliens attacking your transports filled with alien loot!). aliens wouldn't want you to retrieve their technology now would they? if your goal was to buy more time to find a way to defeat the xenos menace their objective should be (next to taking over earth) to stop you finding a way to stop the aliens. effectively wasting your bought time. On top of that i like that it really makes you, the player feel that you react to what YOU did. YOU ordered those convoys and YOU put down a research site on that captured UFO. the aliens are coming to react to YOUR actions and not some stupid random VIP, not some stupid resistance group who noone asked their help for, nothing. it is you who puts yourself in dire situations. not random events.

 

so really in conclusion, I and a part of the community i am not certain to say how large, is interested to change it up. But the secret war idea is simply not the right change. for various reasons.

 

call me a hipster but i do not like xcom at all but i really like xenonauts. so the last thing i want is xenonauts to become what xcom already is. there is a fine line between inspired by and simply copying. for example vehicles? they are something i love because they set apart xcom and xenonauts imo, it really changes the way you play. and honestly i kinda like how they block of reapers. because those things are so vicious you need at least some sort of counter right? now i admit i am not too familiar with xcom but i do not remember vehicles.

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8 hours ago, jevry said:

this showed up in my mail box and to help you and your chances. I completely agree. also wait removing vehicles?! oh they better don't they are the best!

 

and again, i can handle that it is partially secret. but far from fully secret. because secret would automatically mean no more terror attacks on cities amongst other things. and again: if you want a missions where instead of the player has to ACT it has to REACT. make it so that aliens may try to attack research sites for example a crashed alien vessel under quaranteen (since transport is quite difficult especially for the larger craft lets be honest. I mean, those things survive nukes! So you A transport them on a truck which especially the larger ones are too large for, or B take them apart which as one would expect is quite the hussle. oh yeah more reactionary mission ideas, aliens attacking your transports filled with alien loot!). aliens wouldn't want you to retrieve their technology now would they? if your goal was to buy more time to find a way to defeat the xenos menace their objective should be (next to taking over earth) to stop you finding a way to stop the aliens. effectively wasting your bought time. On top of that i like that it really makes you, the player feel that you react to what YOU did. YOU ordered those convoys and YOU put down a research site on that captured UFO. the aliens are coming to react to YOUR actions and not some stupid random VIP, not some stupid resistance group who noone asked their help for, nothing. it is you who puts yourself in dire situations. not random events.

 

so really in conclusion, I and a part of the community i am not certain to say how large, is interested to change it up. But the secret war idea is simply not the right change. for various reasons.

 

call me a hipster but i do not like xcom at all but i really like xenonauts. so the last thing i want is xenonauts to become what xcom already is. there is a fine line between inspired by and simply copying. for example vehicles? they are something i love because they set apart xcom and xenonauts imo, it really changes the way you play. and honestly i kinda like how they block of reapers. because those things are so vicious you need at least some sort of counter right? now i admit i am not too familiar with xcom but i do not remember vehicles.

from the information shared by the developer so far, what you fear seems to be the direction they want to go into. 

-the secret organisation direction is chosen because it makes it lore wise more logical that you have innately limited resources, rather then being a globally funded anti-alien organisation that somehow has to come by with a pittance of money, low skilled recruits and a handful of planes. a discrepancy that apparently bothered the developer.

-since a secret organisation doesn't fight all out wars he also wants to change the alien strategy from war/geneharvesting to an infiltrator style combat where the aliens control humans and manipulate governments on a path of selfdestruction. while the dev didn't state that terror missions will be gone, it is highly unlikely given the setting that aliens will perform a high profile action that is hard to covered up.

-the developer has apparently stated that he dislikes multi-tile units like vehicles as they cause all sorts of issues when moving around, and that he would much rather not have them in the game because of it. 

-the dev has stated that he wants to lean more towards a gameplay mix of the current firaxis Xcom and a mercenary management game called jagged alliance 2, taking elements from both franchises. in particular the covert ops from war of the chosen, a guerrilla missions pick-1-of-3 style (so you can't do every mission) from Xcom2, and a limited roster of specific personnel with various costs depending on their skills from jagged alliance.

about Xcom having vehicles, the original one in the 90's did...the firaxis reboot does not

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