Character Development

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Mentaculus.png
Getting Started
Geoscape
Combat
Character Development
Classes and Skills
Mission Types
Final Mission (Spoiler!)

Overview

Phoenix Point uses a 'sandbox' approach to character creation and development, where the class of the character does not determine the role (a Sniper training.png sniper does not have to be a long-range marksman, she can be a close quarters fighter, an Assault training.png assault does not have to be frontline fighter, he can be support, etc.)

This is implemented through a limited number of choices: in Phoenix Point characters have just 3 attributes, and there are only 5 unique skills to acquire in each class (with the possibility to dual class, for a total of 10), and 3 random personal perks from a pool of 14. However, all attributes and all skills can be useful for all classes, so though you have few things to choose from they can be combined in many different ways.

What each operative will be, what role they will have on the battlefield and what kind of weapons or abilities they will rely on, depends on how you build them; how you spend their skill points and what equipment you give them (and what personal perks you roll).

Stats

All characters have 3 primary or core Attributes: Strength, Willpower, and Speed, and 3 secondary or support attributes, Accuracy, Perception, and Stealth. If they are human, the Forsaken or the Pure they can also wear armor or have augmentations (mutations or bionics), and possess skills and personal perks.

All 1pp.png operatives start with the same attributes (determined by difficulty level). They can wear any armor, or be augmented with mutations or bionics regardless of class (the only exception are 3 special mutated heads only available to the Priest Priests), and you are free to mix and match pieces from different armors.

Primary attributes are soft capped at 30 for strength, and 20 for willpower and speed, but you can go over the cap with armor, mutations, bionics, and personal perks, even though the character sheet will not reflect all the buffs

The primary and secondary attributes, the armor, the mutations, the bionics, the skills and personal perks all serve to determine or modify the following Stats of the character:

- Accuracy, expressed as a % bonus/penalty, adjusts the size of the aiming reticle (derives from armor, mutations, bionics, skills or personal perks). See all the things that increase or decrease Accuracy.

- Armor, average of armor on all the body parts (for humans derives from armor, mutations or bionics)

- Carrying capacity, in weight units, determines how much a character can carry without suffering a penalty to Movement (derived from strength, 1 pt in strength = 1 additional weight unit carrying capacity). Note that the personal perk Resourceful adds +2 to strength and increases the carrying capacity by 25%, but the +2 strength from the perk doesn’t actually add additional capacity when in battle, even though it shows so on the Geoscape. The neural torso bionic doubles carrying capacity.

- Hit Points (HPs), when this goes to 0 the character dies (derives from strength, 1 pt in strength = 10 HPs)

- Movement, in tiles, determines how much a soldier can move in one turn (divided by four, gives movement per AP) (derives from the speed attribute, 1 pt in speed = 1 tile; can be modified by armor, mutations, bionics, or personal perks. See all the things that increase or decrease movement.

- Perception, in tiles, determines the range at which the character will detect enemies in daylight (for humans starts at 35, bonuses and penalties derive from armor, mutations, bionics or personal perks). See all the things that increase or decrease perception; at night reduced by 50%, unless character equipped with Multivisual Sensor Module or Echo Head bionic

- Stealth, a %, reduces the range at which a character can be detected by enemies, i.e. their perception (for humans stealth starts at 0%, bonuses and penalties derive from armor, mutations, bionics, skills or personal perks). See here all the things that increase or decrease Stealth.

- Strength, derived from strength attribute, determines hit points; also determines carrying capacity, grenade throwing distance (range equals strength * 0.6) and resistance to paralyze damage. Can be increased by Resourceful (+2) and Strongman (+2), and Project Vulture (+3 to all 1pp.png operatives). The strength of a character is reduced when its body parts are disabled by the amount of max HPs lost divided by 10, so a character that due to a disabled limb loses 10 max HPs also loses 1 point in strength

- Willpower Points (WPs), fuel the use of skills, cost of mind-controlling the unit to the enemy, if below 0 the character panics (derives from willpower attribute, 1 pt in willpower = 1 WP; Farsighted.png farsighted and Healer.png healer personal perks each increase Willpower by 2, and Sniperist.png sniperist reduces it by 4; Judgement Head mutation increases Willpower by 5 and Resistor Head by 2). For explanation on how WPs are spent and recovered, see WPs in the combat section.

Characters can also have resistances or immunities against certain kinds of damage

Accuracy buffs and debuffs

Armor, Bionics and Mutations Personal perks Skills
Head Body Legs Proficiency Other
Disruptor Head +12% Venom Torso +20% Stomper Legs +12% Bombardier Trooper Strongman +20% Cautious +20% Master Marksman +30%
Acheron Helmet Perceptor Head +10% Neural Torso +8% Acheron Leg Armor Eidolon Leg Armor Amphion Leg Armor +5% Self Defense Specialist +10%
Eidolon Helmet +9% Acheron Body Armor Eidolon Body Armor Amphion Body Armor +5% Banshee Leg Armor TechOps7 Leg Armor +4%
  • Operatives with the Venom Torso mutation cannot wield two-handed weapons, so to benefit from the accuracy buff you have to use handguns
  • An operative cannot have more than two augmentations (whether bionics or mutations)
  • To benefit from the Master Marksman accuracy buff there must not be any detected enemies within 10 tiles of the operative. Note that the +30% buff is not added to the accuracy stat in the info panel during tactical battles
Banshee Helmet +8% Banshee Body Armor +4% Armadillo Legs +3%
Judgement Head +7% TechOps7 Body Armor Phlegethon Body Armor Swamp Cat Body Armor +3% Phlegethon Leg Armor Swamp Cat Leg Armor +2%
Phlegethon Helmet TechOps7 Helmet +6% Juggernaut Torso +1%
Swamp Cat Helmet +4%
Clarity Head +3%
Vengeance Torso -3% Mirage Legs -3%
Anvil-2 Helmet Golem-B Helmet -4% Aksu Body Armor -5% Anvil Leg Armor Golem Leg Armor -4%
Armored Head -6% Guardian Body Armor -7% Aksu Leg Armor -5%
Guardian XA Helmet -8% Regeneration Torso Golem Body Armor Anvil Body Armor -8% Guardian Leg Armor -6% Reckless -10% Adrenaline Rush -50%

Movement buffs and debuffs

Armor, Bionics and Mutations Personal perks Skills
Body Legs
Aksu Body Armor +2 Agile Legs +4 Quarterback +2 Bloodlust up to +50%
Acolyte Body Armor Phlegethon Body Armor +1 Propeller Legs +3 Thief +1
Acolyte Leg Armor Aksu Leg Armor +2 A Priest with Judgement Head can further buff the movement of all characters within 20 tiles by +50% with Judgement Head
Odin Leg Armor Mirage Legs Phlegethon Leg Armor Praetorian Leg Armor +1
Guardian Body Armor Eidolon Body Armor Banshee Body Armor Acheron Body Armor Golem Body Armor Anvil Body Armor Techops7 Body Armor Swamp Cat Body Armor -1

Armadillo Legs Anvil Leg Armor Golem Leg Armor Techops7 Leg Armor Eidolon Leg Armor Swampcat Leg Armor

-1 Encumbrance (pending)
Stomper Legs -2

Stealth buffs and debuffs

Stealth

Armor, Bionics and Mutations Personal perks Skills
Head Body Legs
Styx Helmet Echo Head +10% Styx Body Armor Vengeance Torso +20% Shadow Legs +30% Thief +25% Infiltrator +25%
Acheron Helmet Perceptor Head +5% Acheron Body Armor +10% Mirage Legs Styx Body Armor +20%
Banshee Helmet +3% Banshee Body Armor +5% Acheron Leg Armor +10%
Banshee Leg Armor +6%
Praetorian Helmet Wardog Helmet TechOps7 Helmet Armored Head Disruptor Head -5%
Guardian XA Helmet Anvil-2 Helmet Golem-B Helmet Screaming Head Synod Head Judgement Head Clarity Head -10% Wardog Body Armor Praetorian Body Armor Regeneration Torso Tentacle Torso Venom Torso -10% Wardog Leg Armor TechOps7 Leg Armor Golem Leg Armor Praetorian Leg Armor Propeller Legs Stomper Legs -10%
TechOps7 Body Armor Neural Torso -15% Anvil Leg Armor Guardian Leg Armor -20%
Golem Body Armor Anvil Body Armor Guardian Body Armor Juggernaut Torso -20% Armadillo Legs -25%

Perception buffs and debuffs

Armor, Bionics and Mutations Personal perks
Head Body Legs
Perceptor Head +14 Amphion Body Armor +7 Amphion Leg Armor +4 Farsighted +10
Aksu Helmet Styx Helmet +10 Tentacle Torso +4
Acheron Helmet Eidolon Helmet +7
Banshee Helmet Disruptor Head +5
Acolyte Helmet +4
Armored Head -4
Golem-B Helmet -5
Guardian XA Helmet Anvil-2 Helmet -7 Strongman -15

Leveling up

Operatives improve as they gain Experience Points to level up (unlocking new skills of their class) and Skill Points that can be spent on acquiring unlocked skills and personal perks and to raise attributes.

Experience Points

The operatives acquire Experience Points (XPs) from completing missions. You will also get XPs for accomplishing some missions objectives, even if you fail the mission (for example, in a steal aircraft mission, if the aircraft is destroyed you will still get 'general mission experience' and 'secure access to the aircraft' XPs). The total amount of XPs depends on the type of mission and performance of the squad as a whole, while their distribution among the team members depends on individual performance (mostly enemies killed, but also damage dealt, HPs healed and some other factors), which means that you don’t get more XPs for slaying more enemies.

How are the XPs distributed exactly among the members of the squad? All I found is this post on the official Snapshot forum by cfehunter:

There’s not really any reason to arbitrarily kill enemies on the map, you don’t get bonus XP for kills, just the soldiers that kill them will get a bigger portion of the objective XP than those that didn’t.
Dug into the code. Here’s the exhaustive list of what you get “contribution” points for. Which are then used to scale how much of the objective XP you get shared between your guys.
  • Killing Something (Based on the deployment cost of the object, so bigger = better)
  • Dealing Damage (Damage over time is counted)
  • Healing (HP healed x a settings multiplier)
  • Taking Damage (Health lost x a settings multiplier)
  • Opening a Crate (flat settings value)
  • Activating a Willpoint Objective (the white areas with the head icons, flat settings value)
  • Mind Controlling Something (flat settings value) Mind control doesn’t appear to be hooked up, it’s probably using the ability modifier instead, maybe this is legacy code?
  • Using Abilities (amount depends on the ability)

The operatives also acquire XPs from staying at a base with Training Facilities (remember: you gain 2 XPs from each Training Facility at the base, see here for more).

Gaining XPs unlocks Levels (and the skills associated to them):

LVL2 LVL3 LVL4 LVL5 LVL6 LVL7
100 150 250 400 600 850

Operatives also gain 20 Skill Points (SPs) when they level up.

Skill Points

Operatives acquire Skill Points (SPs) when they level up (20 SPs) and for successfully completing any mission (depending on the difficulty level: 12 on Recruit, 10 on Veteran, 8 on Hero and 5 on Legend). Raids and scavenging ops are considered to have been completed successfully even if you evac immediately after starting them, because you recovered 0 boxes, and 0 is a number as good any other

Skill Points (SPs) can be used to purchase additional primary attribute points, skills or personal perks, at the following rates

  • Increasing 1 pt of Strength costs SPs = new Strength/2 rounded down (so increasing strength from 16 to 17 costs 8 SPs; increasing strength from 17 to 18 costs 9 SPs, etc.)
Strength
Difficulty level ↓ 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 ← attribute #
Rookie 10 21 32 44 56 69 82 96 110 125 ← SPs required
Veteran 9 19 29 40 51 63 75 88 101 115 129 144
Hero 8 17 26 36 46 57 68 80 92 105 118 132 146 162
Legend 7 15 23 32 41 51 61 72 83 95 107 120 133 147 161 176
  • Increasing 1 pt of Willpower or Speed costs new Willpower or Strength (so increasing Willpower from 7 to 8 costs 8 SPs, and increasing Speed from 14 to 15 costs 15SPs)
Willpower
Difficulty level ↓ 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 ← attribute #
Rookie 10 21 33 46 60 75 91 108 126 145 165 ← SPs required
Veteran 9 19 30 42 55 69 84 100 117 135 154 174
Hero 8 17 27 38 50 63 77 92 108 125 143 162 182
Legend 7 15 24 34 45 57 70 84 99 115 132 150 169 189
Speed
Difficulty level ↓ 15 16 17 18 19 20 ← attribute #
ALL 15 31 48 66 85 105 ← SPs required
  • Skills cost:
LVL2 LVL3 LVL4 LVL5 LVL6 LVL7
SP Cost → 10 15 50 20 25 30

Common pool of SP

Completing tactical missions rewards the player with SP that are assigned to a common pool, which can be spent to increase the attributes or acquire skills of any operative.

The number of SP seems to be the total XP awarded for completing the mission rounded up / 100: so a mission rewarded with 265 XP, will give 3 SP to the common pool

You can also receive SP from the following:

-At Peace +30 SP
-Not a Barnacle +25 SP
-The Beautiful Game +25 SP
-Rite of the Clear Sky +30 SP
-Rite of the Crimson Moon +60 SP
-Rite of the Luminous Deep +25 SP
-Further Developments +30 SP
-An Oral History of the Pandoravirus +50 SP
-Cerebral Accelerationism +10 SP

How many missions does an operative have to do to 'max out'?

Maxing out all the primary attributes and acquiring all the skills , including those of a second class and the 3 personal perks requires 720 SPs on Rookie, 748 SPs on Veteran, 774 SPs on Hero and 795 SPs on Legend. Leveling up provides 120 SPs and taking into account how much SPs are awarded for missions on each difficulty level, it will take:

50 missions on Rookie
63 missions on Veteran
82 missions on Hero
135 missions on Legend

What this means is that you can easily max out all your operatives on Rookie and Veteran, and even on Hero (or at least increase their primary attributes to the point where they are almost maxed out) without much effort. In other words, your most veteran operatives will be masters of all trades by the time they reach end game.

However, on Legend maxing out is out of the question unless you are willing to engage in some serious grinding. Therefore, when playing on Legend you have to bear in mind that spending SPs has an opportunity cost and you have to plan ahead.

On lower difficulty levels it's OK to spend SPs as you get them, safe in the knowledge that if your operatives survive they will end up being everything you want them to be and more: even if you don’t dual-class them at first, you will eventually, because they will have SPs to spare.

However, those of your soldiers with less experience, mostly brought up in the ‘stables’, will probably have to focus on specific roles.