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[Suggestion] Two Comments on the Last Stand

Posted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:16 pm
by Chrisy15
I'll start off by saying that I thoroughly enjoy this game, and that it was very much a £10 well spent - not surprising, given FTL's precedent :p

The climatic conclusion in the Last Stand is a really interesting idea in the parallel tracks regarding the difficulty - do you play the islands for longer to find better gear, at the risk of losing Grid Power or; or rush into the Last Stand after two islands without having reached your full potential? I think it's a brilliant dynamic, and a (to my knowledge) unique way to have the game pan out.

However, when playing the Last Stand I've observed two main things:

1. The Bomb
It's not immediately clear that the bomb being destroyed isn't an instant lose condition. While I was pleasantly surprised when a second bomb was dropped, perhaps Kern could either clarify in her dialogue that protecting the bomb isn't a win/lose priority, or simply have her dialogue reworded to not imply such. While on reflection it did make sense that the lose condition was Grid Power rather than the death of an entity, I thought it'd also make sense that the already different Last Stand would have different lose conditions :p

2. The Reset from Stage Transition
This is the more significant issue in my eyes, but it's also the more difficult to handle due to both technical limitations and the drastic impact on balance that the proposed alteration would entail.

Between the Volcano phase and the Cavern phase of the Last Stand all Mechs are fully healed and any disabled ones are reactivated (albeit without any pilot). This is presumably because of the nature of the Last Stand, and how it is technically two different levels. However, in the absence of any in-game justification for this reset, it does feel rather jarring that you've got a safety cushion when you survive the initial 5 turns of the Volcano.

I would imagine that it'd be possible to create a special case for the Last Stand levels so that these things are not reset, although I am obviously uninformed in making this judgement. If it isn't possible then obviously the debate stops dead, and I'll just have to accept the helping hand :p

The other issue with changing this fact would be in regards to balance. Although the game has not been out long, there have undoubtedly been many people (including myself) who have successfully completed runs; and undoubtedly there are some runs (including some of mine) which were only won because of this reset between the stages. I don't really know what to do about these cases, which would not be victories if this change was applied retroactively: whether nothing should be done about them, or whether some kind of note should be made about the conditions under which they were achieved.

One solution could be to have this be a setting available when creating a Profile - a precedent which could then be used for any other major future balance changes. However, I would imagine that there would be many people who'd be displeased with the idea of having to start over to achieve this small fix; while on the contrary if this fix was applied to all Profiles I'd imagine there'd be similar displeasure from people who'd wish for the reset to be retained and not patched out.

Obviously this is a complex matter, the authority regarding the conclusion of which belongs far above my head. However, on the condition of course that this issue is even resolvable in the first place, I think it'd be a worthwhile point of debate to at least entertain for the time being.