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    jp's Into the Breach (PC)

    [January 31, 2023 12:40:32 AM]
    First game of the semester for my critical game design class (Spring 2023). I hop to remember/be able to find the time to write about all of them. We'll see.

    So, this semester's theme is "turn-based tactical" games - and I picked Into the Breach because I'd been meaning to play it for a while and it seems like a high-water mark in the genre. I've also ruled out games that are too expensive (>$20), too old, too popular, and so on. Into the Breach is perhaps one of the more famous ones we'll play this semester...and, it's really good!

    Last semester we did rogue-likes, so for students who were in the class last semester this was a perfect segue into this semester. It's a rogue-like in (sort of?) interesting ways, but way more interesting as a turn-based tactical game. It was fun to struggle against the game before realizing that I was approaching the game "wrong" and that I could do better.

    The experience of the game changed for me when I had the (maybe false?) epiphany/assumption that it should be possible to clear each stage achieving all of the stage's goals. In other words, despite the randomization of certain elements, I assumed that the game's generator created a puzzle for which there was always at least one solution. This mindset helped - and it's possible that I'm wrong - but it made me approach each level with a much more cautious perspective. If you don't assume there's a perfect solution you're more likely to just wander in and try to "win" while failing to prevent the loss of side-objectives and so on. And the side-objectives, at least from my experience, are critical if you really want to make progress.

    Weird catch - and here's where I could be wrong - if each level has a solution (regardless of your mechs and their abilities, etc) THEN, what's the point of the game's progression system? (other than to make you feel good/better because you're stronger/better equipped? Hmm...maybe my assumption is wrong (even if it helps me play better).

    Also, I think that once you get to the final island it might be possible to get setup in a can't win situation. BUT, at least before that you can?

    I need to think about this, or at least do some research. Each game is long enough that losing due to RNG feels too punishing. It's definitely in the spirit of rogue-likes BUT not in the spirit of tactical games, so I think there's some tension there... I'll have to read up on design diaries and talks about the game. I'm pretty sure this was discussed somewhere (podcast maybe?).

    At least I was able to clear the game once (and then realizing I had unlocked a bunch of stuff, to I tried a new game with new mechs and it was also fun as much as the new mechs really bent all the learning I did for the starter ones by operating differently).

    I look forward to getting back to this one later - I never bothered to unlock the 4th island!
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    jp's Into the Breach (PC)

    Current Status: Stopped playing - Something better came along

    GameLog started on: Sunday 22 January, 2023

    GameLog closed on: Thursday 26 October, 2023

    jp's opinion and rating for this game

    No comment, yet.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

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    More GameLogs
    other GameLogs for this Game
    1 : Into the Breach (PC) by dkirschner (rating: 5)


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