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Phoenix Point |OT| CTHULHU-COM


Nov 2, 2017

Think. Adapt. Overcome.

What is Phoenix Point?

Phoenix Point is turn-based tactics strategy game developed by Snapshot studies. It is an intended spiritual successor to the original classic, UFO: Enemy Unknown, and is being made by Julian Gollop himself, the original director of UFO. It combines brutally difficult turn based combat, with a more methodical type of Empire-building on the geocape. The game has heavy Lovecraftian elements, and could be seen as a spiritual succor to XCOM: Terror from the Deep in that regard, and has been expressly described as having overt horror elements in the original pitch. In the year 2022, a dark future in which the world has been consumed by a terrifying pandemic, the Pandoravirus. Thawing from a layer of Permafrost, the Pandoravirus spread to the world’s oceans, and lay dormant for a time, striking only when the planet was at it’s most vulnerable. Tragically humanity was well aware of the Virus itself, but the distraction of World War III prevented news of the Pandoravirus from being anything more than a tabloid story. It ceased to be something so trivial when hundreds of thousands of mutated sea life stormed the surface, and the black mist, a manifestation of the Virus in the form of an airborne mutagenic mist, began to spread across the coasts, crushing any resistance in it’s way. Whilst humanity was busy killing itself, the Pandoravirus had been fast at work, infecting sea-life, corrupting the minds of certain humans, mutating both, and building itself a vast army of alien horrors. While humanity was able to push back the Mutants main advance back to the sea, it came at a terrible cost. Billions of humans fell during the first wave, most governments collapsed, the land had been forever altered by the black mist, large group of dangerous mutants now prowled the wastes, and the remains of humanity retreated to walled up havens. Rising from the ashes of the now shattered planet, new factions arose to guide humanity in their own ways. The year is now 2047, and the black mist had spread across the dark oceans of the world once more, encroaching onto land, and with it, the next wave of invaders. It up for the player to take the mantle of a Phoenix Cell, an isolated group of scientists and soldiers, part of the greater Phoenix Project. Your mission? Save humanity and eradicate the alien threat at any cost.

The Geoscape

The Geoscape plays a very heavy role in Phoenix Point, having been compared by Gollop to the Civilisation series in a way. The first layer of the Geoscape is centered around management; the player must build up his forces to face the threat of the Pandoravirus, which includes building bases, managing resources such as food and scrap, researching technology, manufacturing equipment for your troops, and making sure said troops are properly equipped. The second is exploration; to rebuild the Phoenix Project, the cell must explore the wastes with troop transports, searching for ruined Phoenix Bases, regrouping with other surviving Phoenix Cells, discovering new havens, other oddities, and finding the location of Alien Nests, there’s also an abundance of random encounters that can result in a huge variety of outcomes. You can even sidequests throughout the world, which can be dealing with a group of mad New Jerico soldiers whose dreams have been infected by the Virus, to holding the line against a horde of mutant cultists for a Haven. The third aspect is diplomacy; you can engage in a wide range of interactions with the various human survivors, such as bartering, trading, support, and even military alliances. Furthermore, it’s possible to exchange research and other technology with a friendly faction. A large component of the game is maintaining relationships with the other factions, who are doing their best to solve the Pandoravirus alongside the player. A fourth aspect is warfare; even in this state, humanity squabbles. Unfriendly relations, can even tumble into full out war if relationships sour to such an extent, between players, and even two AI factions. Fifth is countering the Pandora Virus itself; the Pandoravirus is an active player on the geoscape in it’s own right, it will spread the black mist across the planet (infesting land as it encroaches further, which have a huge effect on battlemaps that favor the aliens), launch invasions against Havens converting them into Nests to further flood it’s armies with more mutants, further mutate it’s troops over the game with advanced research and technology of its own, and attempt to stop the player by assaulting their bases. All of these affect a global doomsday clock. Mastery of the battlefield can only do so much; if the player loses the war on the geoscape, either from all your bases being destroyed, or the doomsday clock fills up, the Earth is now taken over by the infection.
The Battlefield

But of course, the meat and potatoes of the game is it’s tactical combat. Phoenix Point incorporates a wide range of features that set it apart. Modular targeting; individuals parts can be targeting, such as arms, legs, the torso, the head, which result in a units functions be taking out, a Crabman with its arm can’t fire it’s grenade launcher or hold it’s shield, a Siren with a crippled head can no longer mind control your soldiers and so on. First Person targeting; one can enter a manual aiming mode, that not only lets you target individuals parts as mentioned above, it lets you hit things behind cover if they have bits showing for more damage, and gives you complete control. An individual ballistics stem; rather then weapons giving set damage, every bullet in Phoenix Point is calculated, the initial bullet may miss, but others may hit, each one is factored as a different set of damage. Vehicular combat; the various factions can field large vehicles in battle, ranging from APC’s, to hover tanks, which all bringing overwhelming firepower to an engagement. Class-based; Phoenix Point has a large pool of distinct classes, you start with access to only three, but you can unlock more through technology, as well as by allying with the various human factions, with the potential to get super powerful prestige combat. Each class has a wide range of abilities, a large selection of weapons (several available to each class and faction), an a distinct battlefield role. To counter this, the Aliens will field their own sets of deadly units; ranging from the mundane crabman, all the way to the behemoth Queens. The game uses a dynamic adaptive AI, best described as akin to MGSV's Revenge System. The enemey AI will devolop new special mutations to their units depending on the way you approach combat, which radically alter the way they play and look.

The Factions
The Disciplines of Anu

“The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the deadly light into the peace and safety of a new dark age.”
-Call of Cthulhu, H.P Lovecraft

Whilst their enemies would describe them as little more than armed cultists, the Disciplines of Anu are a powerful force in their own right. The result of three cults joining in union, the Disciplines view the Pandora Virus as both damnation, and divine providence, brought forth by their deity, the Nameless God. Lead by the impossibly ancient, The Exalted One, the Disciplines seek to use the Black Mist as a means of transcendence. An ideological contrast to the rest of the human factions, the Disciplines seek to transform humanity, rather than save it, for they view the constraints of bare flesh as sacrilege to the true potential humanity has. Whilst friendly to outsiders, the Disciplines have been rightfully accused of bringing much harm through their experimentation though others instead have found enlightenment, and even salvation, through their mastery in mutation. In terms of force composition, the Disciplines are by far the most irregular, with a broad focus on close quarters combat, bolstered by mystical power, and terrifying monsters. Cultist-Warriors, the forces of Anu are primarily composed of Assaults, armed with ornate Revolver Shotguns, and a special class, the Berserker. Pumped up with combat drugs, these mad, almost beastly, humans go into battle with heavy hammers, and greatsword, being the only melee focused class in the game. Their elite prestige class, is the monstrous Priest, who wield terrifying psionic power, which can be used to both buff your allies, and rend your enemies. Furthermore, their mastery of mutations extended even for combat roles, allying with the Disciplines unlocks the ability to mutate your soldiers, giving them crab heads, insect legs, wings, and even the power to make your own priests, which they use freely on their own soldiers. Whilst they travel in massive airships, they have access to no vehicles, instead goading their own Pandora abominations, Mutog’s, giant, hound-esque monstrosities that serve as their replacement. If one allies with Anu, all this Black Magic will be available for the Phoenix Project to use against the horrors of the Pandora Virus. But at what cost?


“People shouldn't be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people.”
-V for Vendetta, Alan Moore

Synderion is, if nothing else, adaptable. The view the Pandoravirus as just one of many obstacles humanity has had to get through over the centuries. They aren’t certainly courting it like Anu, but they have a somewhat neutral stance on it, and believe they can coexist with the transformed environment to forge their Utopia. Synderion views it as an excuse to tear down the class society of the old world, Synderion believes in absolute equality, everyone should be utterly equal in statuer to each other. They pride themselves on their democracy and representative government. And their havens do enjoy a quality of life above the standard, helped by their impressive technology. But things are not as perfect as they seem. Their idealism, and openness to ideas makes them slow to respond to threats, anything can be debated before a course of action is decided open. The armies they field are less focused on large victories, but quick, tactical strikes. They have stealth suits that greatly enhance their ability to remain hidden, powerful beam rifles, and mastery of the sniper. Their prestige class is the infiltrator, a unit that excels at stealth, and has a powerful, backheld drone that gives them unmatched utility, but little else is currently known of the faction.

New Jericho

“Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight. Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay, Rage, rage against the dying of the light. And you, my father, there on the sad height, Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray. Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light”
-Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas

Whilst others may find solace in the promise of rebirth, New Jerico seeks to reclaim what has been lost, bring back, and preserve the old ways, and the Old World, as it as something worth fighting for. New Jerico is a military dictatorship founded by Tobias West, the CEO of Vanadium Incorporated, a massive Private Military Contractor. Whilst Anu views the Pandoravirus as a means of spiritual salvation, Synedrion a perfect opportunity to bring forth a classless age for humanity, New Jerico views it nothing more than a parasite to be eradicated with extreme prejudice, nothing more. This manifests itself with an obsession with utter human purity. In their eyes, infected individuals are no longer even human, and must be put down. This makes them rather hostile to anything that isn’t themselves. Despite their xenophobia, they are committed to protecting the remnants of humanity. In terms of their army, New Jerico fields the most disciplined, professional, and balanced force out of all the factions, for their plan to defeat the Pandoravirus is through military arms alone. Their forces are conventional, but proven. They share the three basic classes of the Phoenix Project. Heavy, Assault, and Sniper, but the functionality of theirs is quite a bit different. Their heavies hulk around in legit Power Armor, with Jetpacks that give them surprising mobility, and wield heavy Gatling cannons, as an example. Their elite prestige class is the Technician, a veteran engineer that provides a whole myriad of buffs, including a deployable sentry turret, shock tentacles on its back, and the ability to heal and buff friendly vehicles Overwhelming firepower and impenetrable armor is New Jerico’s game, and if allied they will provide their powerful military technology to the player, giving the Phoenix Project access to rare research projects, their power armor, and even flamethrowers. Their vehicle is the Armadillo, a heavily armored APC, built more like a tank, with heavy mounted machine gun turret. If humanity is to die, then it will die guns blazing, as itself, defying the dark.




What consoles will this be available to play on?
PC, and Xbox, the later sometime next year.

What storefront will Phoenix Point be available on?
Epic for a year, alongside XBOX (PC) gamepass in a few weeks (Due to Microsoft's verification process)

Is this connected to the recent XCOM reboot?
No, but it’s creator, Jake Solomon, is a good friend of Julian Gollopi, and he was a heavy investor of the game on FIG. Julian Gollopi has credited the reboot for allowing him to make this game in the first place.

Is it similar to the reboot?
Broadly speaking, yes. Players of Enemy Unknown and XCOM 2 will be right at home. There is, as detailed above, however, a larger focus on the Geoscape of the game, and elements of the original UFO Defender that were removed in the reboot have returned here. So it’ll still be a fresh experience.

When is it out?
12/3/2019 7 AM GMT

Have fun. And remember...losing is fun ;)
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Oct 27, 2017
really glad i can try this out on game pass before deciding if it's worth it to buy the ultra edition
if it gives me half the joy (and pain) that xcom 2 has, it'll be totally worth it


Oct 30, 2017
I really dig it. It reminds me of UFO Defense quite a bit actually. I wish the base was more alive like it is in the XCOM reboot but that's a pretty petty gripe.


Oct 25, 2017
Watching christopherodd's coverage of this game. This looks exactly like XCOM 2 (with much better production values and qol). I'm so in for this.


Oct 27, 2017
The presentation/level of detail in XCOM 2 is really astounding, I wouldn't fault a game for failing to match it. The fully destructible, high fidelity environments were such a big ask for a sequel that I'm still amazed they pulled it off.

Just hoping that nixP (that's the new name for the game, sorry) nails the mechanics and UI. So long as it does that it'll be a good time.


Oct 25, 2017
I'm...not 100% sure this still is hitting gamepass on launch day?

" We were planning on releasing on Game Pass on the same day - but we're waiting for certification from MS - so it might be a few days to a week later. "
This is from the following reddit thread here

It'll be coming, but unless something changed since that post 5 hours ago, it will be a few days / a week.


Oct 27, 2017
15 percent off for Humble monthly subs if anyone is buying it directly and has Humble monthly.

Waffling about buying. One hand, I don't like spending 33 dollars when I have game pass. On the other hand, if it's good, this is the type of game I will play over years and years and would prefer to own.

Guess I'll see if the game pass thing from reddit pans out.


Oct 25, 2017
Who waits that long to apply for certification?
I'm guessing it's similar to the original delay that pushed it back into December in the first place - quashing bugs, optimizing, etc....

It's definitely not the 'best' look, but unless MS finds some massive issue, I can't imagine (or rather, hope) it'll take more than a day or three.


The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
Is it right to say there has been some controversy around this game regarding the development? Like content being left out and so on?


Oct 25, 2017
Is it right to say there has been some controversy around this game regarding the development? Like content being left out and so on?
Didn't they leverage this last delay to get time for more QA plus putting back in those cut mech units?

I would say biggest controversy was them taking EGS money and how they handled communication about it.


Oct 25, 2017
Not really expecting this to be all that great... but I’m kinda excited. I need a new XCOM like game and the designs look really cool.


Oct 25, 2017
For some reason, I'm really surprised it is launching. I was under the impression that backers were receiving alpha builds.
Anyway, very excited, will try to buy it before the weekend. :)

Having what must be hundreds of hours on War of the Chosen, I am really excited at what I am seeing of the faction system. I have a feeling this faction system is kind of what they had in mind when coming up with the idea for WotC. It creates this weird feeling that the geoscape is the part I am most excited about this game.


Nov 9, 2017
Really disappointing that the Xbox version got pushed back (I'm pretty sure it was supposed to be day and date with PC for a while). After 100s of hours of XCOM 2 on PC and then XBOX, I really want to play PP from the couch. I guess it'll give me the time to see how the game is before buying.


Nov 24, 2017
So when can I install it? I have it on EGS and says install but get an error. plus on the store it says unavailable (I'm a backer). I guess it's not unlocking until a certain time? EGS is shitty if this is the case and has not been communicated (nothing new there).


Oct 26, 2017
Really disappointing that the Xbox version got pushed back (I'm pretty sure it was supposed to be day and date with PC for a while). After 100s of hours of XCOM 2 on PC and then XBOX, I really want to play PP from the couch. I guess it'll give me the time to see how the game is before buying.
Same, I was still so sure the Xbox version would land this year as well. I guess I'll be waiting.


Apr 20, 2018
Yeah, just found out. As there is no word of this on the storefront it's fantastically dumb. Also 7pm for a launch? In what universe is that normal? I'll be at work then so I'm going to have to wait until tomorrow. *shrug* I've got other games but I was keen to get stuck in.
I am in France and pretty much every game lately unlocks at 7 pm.


Oct 25, 2017
Yeah, just found out. As there is no word of this on the storefront it's fantastically dumb. Also 7pm for a launch? In what universe is that normal? I'll be at work then so I'm going to have to wait until tomorrow. *shrug* I've got other games but I was keen to get stuck in.
Launch's in the EU tend to be at 6PM. An hour, or not depending on DST, would mean that in the universe of EU release times its normal.


Oct 25, 2017
Just nabbed this on EGS. We'll see how it is; I haven't played a game like this since, well, XCom 2 I guess, and to make matters worse I suck at these kind of games, but I think they're neat!