The “orbital scanner” screen – this is basically a list of all the instances you can visit – tracks your overarching objectives. This is the place to go if you find yourself lost in the moment-to-moment weeds, which is easy to do. There’s a lot going on at any given moment, but the game is built to let you focus however you see fit. Which is easy to do when you look at the list of objectives. Just pick one when you’re ready and run with it.
That said, there’s been one constant for me: you can never have enough carbon and iron. Err, excuse me, carbonium and ironium (it seems like “ironium” was “steel” when they recorded the voiceovers, since the robot sometimes bitches about not having enough “steel” when he clearly means ironium, and I’m, all, like, “dude, I don’t have any steel because we’re not even making it!”).
These two things are the foundation for your economy, and most of your resource crises will be a shortage of carbon or iron. Or energy, of course. You can also never have too much energy. There are plenty of mid-game sinks for extra energy, so you’ll be glad if you overpower your bases.
So, the first rule of Riftbreaker is A.B.B.C.I.&.E. “Always Be Building Carbonium, Ironium, & Energy”
God, so much this. But I think I finally figured it out: Riftbreaker is a game in which you climb in and out of a vehicle.
When it’s time for combat or exploration, I climb into the vehicle, which means taking up a game controller and playing an action-RPG/twin-stick shooter. Simple and intuitive. But when it’s time to build stuff, manage resources, and tune the economy, I climb out of the vehicle, which means putting down the controller and playing a city-builder with a mouse and keyboard.
I don’t think either control scheme works well for both types of gameplay, so for me, it’s always one or the other. I’m either in the vehicle and driving around with a controller, or I’m out of the vehicle and managing my economy with a mouse-and-keyboard.