Author Topic: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell  (Read 847855 times)

Offline spawarotti

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4230 on: May 29, 2021, 12:07:11 am »
Playing XCF and loving it as always. Some inputs on balance from me:

Spoiler:
- The Syndicate Monster Lab mission, for the frequency it appears, is a bit boring and unbalanced. Boring, because the base layout is always the same, not very interesting (primarily long tunnels), and the randomized caves end up mostly in dead ends without enemies. Unbalanced, because one can rack up 3 millions from the Monsters Inc. files, which is a lot of money given the mission difficulty, especially on repeated raids.

That mission would be excellent if it would have to be done only once, or the base was more randomized, and the items were worth less money.

I would suggest to make it stop appearing earlier. Not when the syndicate HQ is defeated, but when the most critical research from it is obtained. For reference, here is the mission randomization logic: https://github.com/SolariusScorch/XComFiles/blob/7f3e1de7a6502ef24ddeabed5ea190eb56a7b3d5/Ruleset/missionScripts_XCOMFILES.rul#L7030-L7044

- I had plenty of zombie infestations, but I never got one with even a single zombie infector. I had to get the zombie infector research from interrogating many syndicate scientists, primarily captured during the Syndicate Monster Lab missions. This research gates a lot of progress, including M.A.G.M.A. storyline, Zombie storyline and neural implant.

Perhaps (not sure) a good fix would be to increase the frequency of investations with infectors, at least compared to the basic infestations:
https://github.com/SolariusScorch/XComFiles/blob/7f3e1de7a6502ef24ddeabed5ea190eb56a7b3d5/Ruleset/missionScripts_XCOMFILES.rul#L4827-L4870

- The Alien Alloy Welder is perhaps a bit too hard to get. I raided several UFOs already, including a very large one, and still no luck. At least I finally got the multitool. Huge amounts of research are gated because of that, and I am stuck on Heavy Titanium Suits. I think I might end up unlocking multiple tiers of research at the same time. I mean that by the time I will have the prerequisites for personal armor research, I will be already most way through to higher tiered armors and other items.

- I got Kitsune and Ravens way too early. Before the invasion started. This made everything before them obsolete, including Skyranger, Arrow, Interceptor, etc. I think Kitsune perhaps should come significantly later, around the tame of Skymarshall or later.


« Last Edit: May 29, 2021, 12:09:45 am by spawarotti »

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4231 on: May 29, 2021, 11:41:55 am »
A couple good points.

I decreased the chances for subsequent Syndicate Monster Lab. Now it shouldn't appear remotely as often. (Perhaps it should only appear once, but I'd rather save some chances for multiple instances.)

Zombie Infectors are relatively common. Not finding some is a particular quirk of your campaign. Such things help make each playthrough different :)

The Welder may be a more serious problem. Not sure what to do about it yet, though. Just distribute more welders among alien crews?

As for your craft acquisition sequence: it sounds just crazy. :D

Offline Mrvex

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4232 on: May 30, 2021, 01:00:23 am »
Playing XCF and loving it as always. Some inputs on balance from me:

I think I might end up unlocking multiple tiers of research at the same time. I mean that by the time I will have the prerequisites for personal armor research, I will be already most way through to higher tiered armors and other items.



That is the exact thing that always happens to me that by the time i unlock something, something just way superior can be researched right away and its all due to the RNG reward roullette of tech and cross dependencies and dependancy on end-tier laboratory which has its own set of specific requirements. Until the whole end game and tech access is reworked, RNG completely controls the flow of the campaign. Solarious is aware of that..

And it does hurt the game which otherwise has quite smooth tech and gear progression.


Offline spawarotti

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4233 on: May 30, 2021, 01:23:52 am »
A couple good points.

I decreased the chances for subsequent Syndicate Monster Lab. Now it shouldn't appear remotely as often. (Perhaps it should only appear once, but I'd rather save some chances for multiple instances.)

Awesome! I think you can get the "Monsters Inc. Files" [1] only from that lab, so probably it should continue appearing until the player has researched it. So they don't get blocked if they sell all of them instead.

[1] https://xcf.trigramreactor.net/master/article/STR_MONSTERS_INC

Zombie Infectors are relatively common. Not finding some is a particular quirk of your campaign. Such things help make each playthrough different :)


Yeah, I suspected that. I guess that's the reason why it can be obtained from the Syndicate scientist.


The Welder may be a more serious problem. Not sure what to do about it yet, though. Just distribute more welders among alien crews?

I think that would be a good start. Another idea I have is to provide some alternative source if the player is not getting it for a long time - perhaps some event if the player is late enough in the game and/or researched specific topics. Maybe - an event that has a chance of appearing once the player interrogated 3 alien engineers. And the chance increases the more engineers have been interrogated. Just an idea.


As for your craft acquisition sequence: it sounds just crazy. :D

I see that Kitsune research becomes available after Promotion III [2], which I understand is expected to be done by the time invasion starts, yes?

Maybe Kitsune should not be available until the player researches Skymarshall? Say, it cannot be repaired without this tech.

Ravens [3] primarily require alien alloys, which can be obtained if the player gets at least one UFO, e.g. in the Gertrude mission. (btw I know you recently made that mission harder to get, so that should help).

Basically: if I get Promo III by invasion start and at least one UFO, I am set to have Kitsune and Ravens, making all the previous crafts obsolete.

[2] https://xcf.trigramreactor.net/master/article/STR_LOST_ALIEN_SHIP_DATA
[3] https://xcf.trigramreactor.net/master/article/STR_RAVEN
« Last Edit: May 30, 2021, 01:38:40 am by spawarotti »

Offline krautbernd

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4234 on: May 30, 2021, 05:05:03 pm »
I think that would be a good start. Another idea I have is to provide some alternative source if the player is not getting it for a long time - perhaps some event if the player is late enough in the game and/or researched specific topics. Maybe - an event that has a chance of appearing once the player interrogated 3 alien engineers. And the chance increases the more engineers have been interrogated. Just an idea.

Not possible given current mechanics afaik. Seeing how engineers are the ones "using" multitools&welders, why not add them as interrogation topics instead if the prerequisites have been met? Maybe also to David Vincent?


Maybe Kitsune should not be available until the player researches Skymarshall? Say, it cannot be repaired without this tech.

I see multiple issues with this, one being that the Kitsune is stated to be notably less advanced than normal alien craft and easily repairable. It's also a one-off craft (unlike the Raven), so I don't see this as a balancing issue. At that point I (and probably the majority of players) have multiple bases and other landing craft, on top of that it is also limited to "regular" mission sites (unlike the Dragonfly for example). Meaning it does not, in fact, make "all previous crafts" obsolete.

 Yes, it has less trade-offs than other craft (at that point in the game), but then again it is supposed to be a superior and unique/special craft. It also outclassed by later "mass production" craft in both roles (Skymarshall has a larger range&capacity, Raven is faster&more resistant).

Making it available after the Skymarshall (and probably the Raven as well, given the current research tree) instead makes it obsolete almost by default. It is fine where it is as far as availability is concerned, but it might need some tweaking regarding its parameters.
« Last Edit: May 30, 2021, 05:20:29 pm by krautbernd »

Offline HT

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4235 on: May 31, 2021, 12:48:51 pm »
I updated the game mid-campaign, but I see I'm missing some things, like the Stun Spear, which should be available since I researched the Electric Prod before the update, but the Spear is nowhere to be seen. Do I have to mess around with my saves to add said spear? How would I do that exactly?

Just to know.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4236 on: May 31, 2021, 01:09:12 pm »
I updated the game mid-campaign, but I see I'm missing some things, like the Stun Spear, which should be available since I researched the Electric Prod before the update, but the Spear is nowhere to be seen. Do I have to mess around with my saves to add said spear? How would I do that exactly?

Check again - you need a working Stun Spear first. It's an artifact.

Offline HT

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4237 on: June 01, 2021, 03:28:08 pm »
Check again - you need a working Stun Spear first. It's an artifact.
Oh, so enemies use it? Which faction does use such weapon? Can you give me a spoiler? Just to know if they do employ it, or whose faction is supposed to do so in case it doesn't work.

Online MemoryTAS

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4238 on: June 01, 2021, 04:29:36 pm »
Not even a faction, only one enemy uses it and they show up in one specific mission:
Spoiler:
Dr Alpha of Syndicate

Offline Mathel

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4239 on: June 02, 2021, 07:14:30 pm »
So I did Pharaoh's tomb today. It was a slog. 8 allies survived, 92 corpses were recovered, I forgot how many live hostiles were recovered, and I know some corpses got blown up.
In total, it must have been about 110 to 120 AI units.

Also, it would have been nice to have some knowledge that I should stockpile Zombie Parasites before I ended zombie missions. How am I going to get them for Proteanism now? I had a similar issue with Quillbow and Chupacabra serum, but I assume that is just because I upgraded late in the campaign.

Offline Fomka

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4240 on: June 03, 2021, 01:34:23 am »
My 5 cents about Zombie parazites' stockpiling. So, I'm a commander of secret force that is defending the planet from exotic threats. That force, Paranormal Activity Unit, is capturing dangerous zombie parazites that fill PAU stores. The dillema arises: to sell the parazites or not to sell (and build more stores). But there is no option of selling, because the planet is safer with the parazites not circulating on the dark/grey market.

In my game I stockpiled parazites and ammo for plasma weapons for the sake of Earth's safety. Haven't get Protean tech yet.

Offline Mathel

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4241 on: June 03, 2021, 03:47:02 pm »
That's a good point actually. But if I was not going to sell live zombies and parasites, I would have at least made sure to get as few of them as possible by double-tapping downed zombies more. So I would have had some parasites, but still not many.

It might be a good idea to add to Meet the Coven something in the lines of:
"For punishing the Pharaoh, we offer a way to gain immortality by fusing oneself with an Essentor."

It would not be obvious, but at least there would be some hint that you should not destroy all parasites you find.

Offline Marrik

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4242 on: June 09, 2021, 02:44:51 am »
Is 1.8b save compatible with 1.8?

Online MemoryTAS

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4243 on: June 10, 2021, 05:46:19 pm »
Yes

Offline armadilloTank

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Re: The X-Com Files - 1.8: The Shores of Hell
« Reply #4244 on: Today at 05:48:47 am »
That is the exact thing that always happens to me that by the time i unlock something, something just way superior can be researched right away and its all due to the RNG reward roullette of tech and cross dependencies and dependancy on end-tier laboratory which has its own set of specific requirements. Until the whole end game and tech access is reworked, RNG completely controls the flow of the campaign. Solarious is aware of that..

And it does hurt the game which otherwise has quite smooth tech and gear progression.

Welders not dropping are why I stopped my first run.

Does this have an designed for difficulty level? Like in Xpiratez where playing on super human actually makes it easier?