cyber-snake vixens of cydonia: terror from the deep: rising sea levels HD remaster


Anything that is not strictly the game playing part of this game (usually the most interesting parts of games to me) I think is terrible. there’s a part at the beginning where some meat man says “I’ve located the target” and the female radio backup voice says “are you sure” and I’ve just been really irritated at the game ever since. Why would he go out of his way to say those words if he wasn’t sure. Why would you write this interaction this way.

I’m sick to high heaven of hard asses saying dumb military lingo dialogue about “retrieving the package” etc, it’s got the same characters as in ever other videogame with the same voice actors etc, I hate sci fi videogames with their unreal engine looking overly elabrorate floor and wall panels and glowing hologram screens and cables running everywhere in every single structure, every space ship is an overly designed lens flare machine, firearms of course have somehow gotten bulkier and heavier. and the worst part, michael bay movie music-sounds to try and drum up cheesy ass emotions in bad cinematics where a man gravely intones of the Enemy Threat but with the implication that you are going to Take Care of Business for Freedom. it’s american anime is what it is. and it’s bad enough I’m getting starcraft 2 flashbacks. I never got into the old games, but knowing they exist I can’t stop thinking how much better vague dialogue boxes and abstract early-mid 90s pc pixel art, at least for the command center bullshit, would be

the game looks beautiful in the screenshots remote has been posting on steam though.


yeah, that’s a lot worse at the beginning. it smoothes out.


one thing they haven’t fixed from the last game is that base-building is too straightforward of an optimization puzzle to be really interesting or dynamic but you’ll always get it slightly wrong your first time through and there’s no opportunity to correct it

it’s a pointless handicap, among lots of better “you can have x or y but not both” choices.


TBH, this is something that I think is a trend in western games in general, and genuinely bothered me about the previous XCOM outing.

Our strategy/roguelike games tend to be forward-planning games, where we focus on capabilities for future events, and generally there’s a lot of “oops, you made a bad choice and it will end you down the road because we expect much more perfection out of you on your next attempt.”


well, I really like optimization puzzles, so I get it! but this one is too solvable on your second try and not on your first. moreover, having it unsolved is more an arbitrary, needless imperfection rather than a fun and interesting one.

fwiw, optimum configuration:

  • power station should be your third build, on exposed power coil. if power coil is on level 3 or below your first two builds need to be directly on top of it

  • guerrilla tactics centre goes in either of the top corners

  • lab goes in the other of the top corners

  • workshop goes in the middle of the second row

  • proving ground and resistance comms go in either the top middle or the left or right side of the second row, depending on which you need first and how you built out to your power coil.

  • psi lab goes on the remaining left or the right side of the second row

  • advanced warfare centre goes in the middle of the third row unless your exposed power coil was there, then it goes anywhere in the third row

  • shadow complex goes on the left or the right side of the third row


they also really need to implement the autosaving-but-with-a-fixed-number-of-rewinds-allowed-per-level mechanic from invisible inc in this game, it’s the only really sensible solution to the savescumming / ironman dichotomy


Ah, yeah, that’s a pretty cool system. I’ve been save scumming like a madman so far (I’m terrible at this game).

I think I got Invisible Inc. in a bundle at some point. Is it worth playing? How does it compare to XCOM?


It is so phenomenally tight as to make you question how much you enjoy the wow-I’m -so-powerful element of these games, which is totally lacking there, relative to the rest


Invisible Inc. is a far, far more focused and tighter-tuned game than XCOM, though they have some mechanical and thematic similarities. You’re never more than a few moments away from everything going to hell, and your resources are FAR tighter than in XCOM… but at the same time, you feel far more “in control” of everything that happens. There aren’t very many things that are up to a random chance: most of the actions you and your opponents can carry out are guaranteed. The problem lies in how many of them you can carry out and still survive the mission.

It’s very strictly a Stealth Game; you cannot win open fights, you can only hope to create an opening to flee, hopefully having completely your objective for the level. Every turn that ticks away leads you closer and closer to that inevitable confrontation. You do what you can to get useful equipment and upgrades for your agents, but sometimes you’re going to have to try and complete an extremely dangerous mission with an extremely slow-charging stun prod and a single bullet between two agents. Maybe you’ll spot the exit early enough to plot a relatively safe route out for at least one of your agents, maybe you’ll be just close enough to cover to duck out of range before that guard can gun her down, maybe you’ll open a door and discover there’s no “safe” route to that terminal and somebody’s going to have to be a distraction.

Uh. Anyway. It’s really, really good.


yep, invisible inc was easily one of the best games of last year.

it’s incredible how well invisible’s mechanics scale into higher difficulties compared to something like xcom. with xcom’s probability and risk management mechanics, it doesn’t take much for the game to go from being “hard” to actually unfair; they’re practically synonymous. xcom needed like 8 units (in long war) for an individual turn to be compelling; invisible can force you to stop and think for 15 minutes with just 2 or 3 units and fewer mechanics.

or you could talk about how invisible handles the build-up of individual missions with a level of style appropriate for a hollywood spy movie, while xcom usually starts each mission by throwing a bunch of pods at you and then makes the second half into janitorial work.

there are so many little things invisible does right that the thought of writing a longpost about it is too exhausting for me


I was having this curious thought about how much better I would have enjoyed this if the character design was straight '70 anime.


so I’m having the civ problem with this where now that I’ve seen the top-level tech, actually pushing through to the final missions feels like a slog

also having the smash problem wherein this running a narrower set of hardware and being less polished and endlessly refined and user modded than its predecessor makes it seem less interesting than long war or invisible Inc

Time to put it down for a while. It’s good though, no question about that!


Man Invisible Inc was so good

I’m just gonna link Robert Yang’s piece because it’s pretty insightful about how Invisible manages to make stealth interesting:


Another thing this article has not mentioned is that you might be perfectly happy with a run in which you don’t even complete your main objective - sometimes just stealing a lot of money and buying a good item is enough.
Deciding when that’s it, you should definitely stop trying to get stuff and get the hell out, according to the intel you have about the placement of the exit location / guards / safes, was the best part of that game.

I’m surprised the rewind system wasn’t lifted wholesale for Xcom 2, it allows a lot of leeway while still keeping the entire game tense.


it should’ve been, no question


I think he touches on it here:

“And this apocalyptic relentlessness is possible ONLY if you coach the player to have a different relationship to failure than most stealth games, and decouple detection from failure. One of the most beautiful things that Invisible Inc does is that halfway through a mission, you can always retreat early without actually accomplishing the scouted objective. Retreating is a common mechanic in everyone-dies tactics games like XCOM, but it is totally unheard of in most stealth games, which usually handcuff themselves to a binary mission success or failure.”

but yeah, that part is definitely one of the best facets of Invisible that go a long way toward making it so good – success stops being a true/false state within missions, allowing the game to really build toward that final encounter as the “did you succeed enough” final question


Finally got back to my apartment, booted it up, and discovered by video card can’t handle this shiiiiiiiiiiiittttttttttt ffffffkasdjflkajfd

(ordered a new one today)


tonight I confirmed that long war now feels really dry and slow compared to this, even if I’m a little ambivalent on it after putting in 20 hours in 6 days



Isn’t that the same thing it does in XCOM 2012?

It probably is because all of those have a difficulty modifier on them.