1.Has an even stronger pull to keep playing “one more mission” than XCOM and XCOM2 from firaxis did. Getting straight into combat and quickly doing your daily strategic tasks just speeds up the core loop.
2. The Medic (default starter character) is key in early missions because gremlin heal is unlimited and on a 1 turn cooldown.
3. Scars on characters (Debuffs) are a good punishment because they force you to rotate your roster to remove them and/or play to avoid them if you can’t shuffle the roster right away.
4. I restarted once because the first 2 squad unlocks I choose happened to be shotgun users and both had AOE cover destruction which made everything very samey. 2nd game I started with some of the defaults and choose different characters and it really altered the feel and tactical approaches I took.
Not sure if I should post this here, since it’s not XCOM, but it’s the same type of game, so oh well…
Apparently, Gears Tactics is either really great or a miss, depending on which review you read. Regardless, consider me intrigued and this is something I’m going to keep my eyes on when it gets cheaper:
Same game, two reviewers, two very different opinions.
I find with a lot of games in this broad space that they tend to get very “samey” mechanically, to the point that it doesn’t feel different playing one property compared to another. Like, even the recent Battletech game doesn’t feel materially different from the X-Com games when I actually play. They feel the same. I’m engaging my brain the same way. I’m even solving PROBLEMS the same way.
I think it’s the Chrono Trigger / Advance Wars problem.
Chrono Trigger and Advance Wars are extremely, insanely good. The content, the challenges, everything has surprising depth. No game like Chrono Trigger has ever come close to its legacy. No game like Advance Wars has even scratched the barest itch of what Advance Wars felt like to play.
What do they both have in common?
They had massive creative teams spending unreasonable amounts of time and energy relative to the scope of the games themselves. Advance Wars designers put more effort into single maps than many people put into entire games. Chrono Trigger deployed an army of people to refine and polish the game.
See also: The Simpsons.
The glory days of The Simpsons worked their writers’ room to death. They spent more time on refinement than on creation.