Games of the Year

Frozen Synapse 2

Frozen Synapse 2 Screenshot 1
Frozen Synapse 2 Screenshot 2
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Open World Tactics Frozen Synapse 2 brings you classic tactical gameplay with a new twist: it's set within a vast procedurally generated city. We're calling it "open world tactics" - a combination of grand strategy and simultaneous-turn-based combat. In single player, Frozen Synapse 2 tasks you with defending the city of Markov Geist against an array of threats from within and without. Set up bases, deploy your forces and then enter any building or engage a target anywhere on the map: you define your own strategy. When you're ready to take tactical control, the camera will zoom down to your units, enabling you to make your plan and test it out. When you hit the "Prime" button, your moves are locked in and you must see how they play out against your opponent's plan.
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Game Discussion

Review by Anonymous
Review from Steam

Really fun game that feels true to the Frozen Synapse gameplay, and a kind of real-time city strategy the likes of which I don't think I've ever seen before. To summarize, this game is basically Frozen Synapse + Mount and Blade Warband, but in kind of a bad way. Since Frozen Synapse (I'll call it FS from now on) is a squad tactics game, there's some weirdness where it borrows from the Warband formula. For example, because it considers itself a tactics game, there's no auto-resolve feature, meaning you have to play through every single fight, even overwhelming ones you'll definitely win. And also because of this, the AI is designed to try it's absolute best to win, which includes what I'd call "badgering tactics". Some peaceful factions, will constantly call you begging for stuff, and even when you invest significant money into keep your relationship good, if you don't eventually give them what they ask they'll attack you, and you want to avoid war as much as possible.
Not because you won't win.. If you put in the time you can win almost every single encounter, unless you're completely outnumbered and far from support. But because then when you go anywhere, or own any property, that faction will send harrying forces, that have no real chance of victory, but will stop your squad from progressing and take up 20 minutes of your real time. That might sound fine in theory, but let me step back a little.
There's like 11 factions, who each have at least 6 squads (you start with one), and when you start playing at scale you'll have at least 6 squads and 4-5 properties that all need defending. This means even completing very simple jobs, like "deliver this here" can take over 3 hours realtime because of how many times you can get attacked moving 4 blocks, both the squad that is on a mission and any defensive forces you have. It's extremely tedious gameplay and NEEDS to be tweaked for any living human to realistically play.
I also had 90% consistent crashes when fighting in certain areas, which resets the entire encounter. Normally this wouldn't be a big deal, but when that represents a 30-ish minute loss of progress through no fault of your own.. it's a big deal.
I would really like the format of this game if it was made a little less tedious, had customization options, or if I could fight against real human players in the city sandbox that would fight more reasonably. Overall I just think everything needs to be turned down so I can actually play.

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