developer: Snapshot Games Inc.
publisher: Snapshot Games Inc.
Game mode: single player
Phoenix Point for PC is a strategy game set in a unique sci-fi setting. It was developed by American studio Snapshot Games, founded in 2013. The studio is known for the well-received fantasy turn-based strategy game Chaos Reborn, funded on Kickstarter. The production process of both games was supervised by Julian Gollop, co-creator of such classic titles as Laser Squad, Rebelstar Raides, and, most importantly, the original UFO: Enemy Unknown game, the first one in the X-COM series, brought back by Firaxis in 2012.
The story takes place in 2046. Several decades earlier, a group of scientists conducting research in Antarctica found a mysterious ancient alien virus in one of the ice samples. The virus soon gets out of control and attacks all life forms in its path. Humanity turned out to be helpless in face of the global pandemic and was quickly decimated. Humans and animals were soon turned into terrifying mutants, lurking in the mist concealing most of the Earth's surface. The survivors took shelter in secluded enclaves, fighting their constantly changing and adapting foes every day. The developers' inspiration were the works of H. P. Lovecraft and horror movies by such directors as David Cronenberg. Phoenix Point features multiple endings, which depend on your decisions during the campaign.
Phoenix Point is largely based on the original X-COM game and its modernized versions (XCOM: Enemy Unknown and XCOM 2). However, it doesn't mean the developers used the same mechanics. You lead one of the bastions of humanity (the eponymous Phoenix Point), taking care of its development, safety, and resources, as well as military operations. Like in XCOM, you also use the world map to search for other human settlements and do the missions received there. You should also look for hidden locations, where you can get the resources necessary to upgrade your base and equipment. When contacting other factions, it may turn out that not all of them are friendly. Some of them worship the virus-afflicted monstrosities, while others strive for the co-existence with the mutants or their complete extermination. Depending on your relations with these factions, you may be able to use their unique technology and weapons. The political and economic aspects of the game are much more important than in XCOM, sometimes resembling Paradox' titles.
You spend most of the time during the game fighting turn-based games, in which you lead your customised team. Basically all the battle locations are procedurally generated. In addition, the game features destructible environment, offering you new tactical opportunities. The maps are mostly concealed by mist created by the virus, acting as a cover for your enemies. Similarly to the locations, those enemies are also procedurally generated by the game's engine. Curiously, the mutants adapt to your playstyle. If you mostly use sniping weapons, in the next mission the monsters will have evolved and will be able to counter your attacks. You can, like in the Fallout series, aim at specific body parts of your opponents, which is extremely important when fighting the largest Lovecraftian-like beasts.
Phoenix Point for PC utilizes an original game engine and features nice-looking visuals, using many modern tricks and effects.
PC / Windows
Recommended: Intel Core i5 3.0 GHz / AMD FX 3.2 GHz, 16 GB RAM, graphic card 6 GB GeForce GTX 1060 / 8 GB Radeon R9 390X or better, Windows 7(SP1)/8/10 64-bit
Minimum: Intel Core i3 / AMD Phenom II X3, 8 GB RAM, graphic card 2 GB GeForce GTX 660 / Radeon R9 270 or better, Windows 7(SP1)/8/10 64-bit