Your favorite single-player squad (party) tactical games....

ZedClampet

Community Contributor
By squad, I mean multiple, individual NPC's. By tactical, I just mean you should have a decent degree of control over them. They shouldn't just be companions and mostly act independently like in Fallout or Far Cry games, and I guess let's say there should be at least two of them. Doesn't necessarily have to be strategy games like Xcom or RTS's. Pick from any genre. Can be party-based cRPG's or it can be shooters like the first Ghost Recon game. (usually when I ask these types of questions, I forget to put any stipulations on them and people get confused as to what is a proper answer).

For me, of the games I've played over the last 10 years, I'd say Xcom 2 was my favorite (and I'm very disappointed that it doesn't appear Xcom 3 is going to happen any time soon).

So what are yours? Also, I'm interested in knowing about any SP FPS games where you have a squad that you control.
 
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I started XCom 2 and then just never went back to it. The same with Gears Tactics on the Game Pass. I don't understand why, because I quite enjoyed them at the time.

Ghost Recon was the most enjoyable one I've played with that setting and feeling.

I think there's a Resident Evil where you organise your ally as well, but she turned out to be a little broken.
 
Battle Chess!

I don't have anything for you beyond the usual RTS & 4X. Favs of those:

Command and Conquer Generals: Zero Hour
Adds 3 playable generals to each of the base game's 3 adversaries, and also the excellent Generals' Challenge where you play as any one general against any of the others, culminating in a fight against a 'super general' who combines the traits and unique units of all the generals. So about 60 battles and 9 boss fights in all.

ETA: those 69 boss fights are of course in addition to the normal campaigns, and skirmish mode.

Civilization 4
If Civ6 is too complicated but you like building a good few cities, then try Civ4. It doesn't confuse strategy with needless and mostly 'who cares?' red tape and secret handshakes like Civ6 does, and doesn't restrict you to building only a small handful of cities like Civ5. Get the final 3.19 version of Beyond the Sword expansion, and the BAT/BUG/BULL UI mod.

FPS
I avoid squad games in FPS as I got tired of my guys running in front of me as I squeezed off a rocket. I feel squad is suited to turn-based, not real-time, and I prefer strategy over tactical to keep turn-based interesting.
 
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By squad, I mean multiple, individual NPC's. By tactical, I just mean you should have a decent degree of control over them. They shouldn't just be companions and mostly act independently like in Fallout or Far Cry games,
Pick from any genre. Can be party-based cRPG's
The "shouldn't just be companions" part confuses me a bit (though I can be easily confused). My experience with party-based RPGs is that the "squad" is comprised of companions, either found in my travels (like the Mass Effect or Dragon Age games), or created (like in Solasta or the Icewind Dale games). Occasionally there are NPCs that can join your party or squad, but it's temporary, and usually no control over them.

So assuming (always sketchy to assume) that my confusion is unwarranted, my favorite party (or squad) based game is Dragon Age Origins. It's real time w/pause combat, and you can take control of any party member at any time, but there was a tactics screen where you could tweak and fine tune the party's actions based on conditions. Use a healing potion, cast a spell (and which spell), switch combat style (like ranged to melee), focus the attack on a certain character type (like a spell caster). The options were just extremely intricate, and I haven't seen it's like since. Bioware dumbed it down horribly in the next two DA games which was a shame in my opinion. Maybe players didn't want to deal with it, but I loved it.
6hbzA8R.jpg
 
The "shouldn't just be companions" part confuses me a bit (though I can be easily confused). My experience with party-based RPGs is that the "squad" is comprised of companions, either found in my travels (like the Mass Effect or Dragon Age games), or created (like in Solasta or the Icewind Dale games). Occasionally there are NPCs that can join your party or squad, but it's temporary, and usually no control over them.

So assuming (always sketchy to assume) that my confusion is unwarranted, my favorite party (or squad) based game is Dragon Age Origins. It's real time w/pause combat, and you can take control of any party member at any time, but there was a tactics screen where you could tweak and fine tune the party's actions based on conditions. Use a healing potion, cast a spell (and which spell), switch combat style (like ranged to melee), focus the attack on a certain character type (like a spell caster). The options were just extremely intricate, and I haven't seen it's like since. Bioware dumbed it down horribly in the next two DA games which was a shame in my opinion. Maybe players didn't want to deal with it, but I loved it.
6hbzA8R.jpg

It feels like Bioware just lost interest as a whole, when it was releasing Balduars Gate, Never Winter Nights, Mass Effect to then releasing Andromeda which was nothing compared to the previous Mass Effects and not to mention the borefest that was Anthem.
 
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Zloth

Community Contributor
There's a lot of apples/oranges effects in that question. I play a lot of these sorts of games, so I'll just list off my favorites and why.
  • Troubleshooter: Abandoned Children. Nothing comes even close to the variety of skills you can give a squad member.
  • Valkyria Chronicles 1 and 4. Kind of like a 3D XCOM, except you train all soldiers in a class instead of individuals. The games have a lot of faults, but they're FUN!
  • XCOM 2. This has become the gold standard for tactical squad games for a reason.
  • BattleTech. If Abandoned Children is too JRPG'ish for you (or if you just haven't got time for its longer battles), BattleTech scratches the XCOM itch while adding a lot of customization in the form of mechs.
  • Baldur's Gate 2. A great, classic RPG with good tactical combat, too. Real time with pause.
  • At least two companions? Sweet. Final Fantasy 7, then. The combat system is a fun one and the story is superb!
The Last Remnant doesn't quite fit under this topic's roof. It's close, though - maybe hanging out on the back patio. You don't command individual characters, but you do command small groups of up to 5 characters. You don't give precise commands, but you do give general directions and you can see the exact command each character expects to use.
 
XCOM is definitely my favourite tactics game. Haven't played 2 yet, but it is on my to-play list.

The Mass Effect series are great games that involve companions you have some control over, though I wouldn't say they're good games about controlling your companions.

Besides the first Ghost Recon, another good FPS with great companion control is S.W.A.T. 4.

Do the Worms games count? Though I would say that they're really meant to be played against other people.
 
It feels like Bioware just lost interest as a whole, when it was releasing Balduars Gate, Never Winter Nights, Mass Effect to then releasing Andromeda which was nothing compared to the previous Mass Effects and not to mention the borefest that was Anthem.
I don't think that Bioware lost interest in making RPGs, I think that most of the disruptive development cycles and employee turnover can be attributed to the EA effect (Electronic Arts). There are several other posts that go into this issue, but I will say that I think Anthem's failure was a good thing. I think it helped trigger the return to the single player RPGs that Bioware was known for. As a side note, while ME: Andromeda can't compare to the original ME1-3 Trilogy, it was a far better game than given credit; more of an offshoot of the original games.
 
Battle Brothers, and Battletech from the last few years, Xcom remakes were obviously a big moment. Not teh biggest fan of and FPS real time tactics games, I mostly just forget about the squad and just start blasting. Havent given anything like that a shot probably since Star Wars Republic Commando though.

Anyone following Midnight Suns?


I'm pretty neutral on Marvel stuff generally but this sounds like something pretty different mechanically to other modern turn based tactics games, Firaxis too.
 

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