The combat in Pathway is turn-based. When a fight starts, one of the sides gets a chance to move their units on the map (the player always starts first). A turn ends when all units belonging to one of the sides is done with their actions. Every unit can perform up to two actions - one of each type: movement, attack, using abilities/support items. The order doesn't matter.
- Combat interface
- Placing units
- Special attacks and Bravery points
- Hit chance
- Exploding barrels
The combat interface in Pathway is rather simple:
- (1) Icons that allow you to switch between the characters; you can also switch between the characters by clicking on them.
- (2) Character information: starting from the top - health, armor, bravery points.
- (3) Currently equipped weapon and the amount of ammo, number of items, and currently equipped armor.
- (4) Switch between functions and the information on enemy units.
- (5) Attack and ability buttons: they depend on which character you control, their weapon and armor.
- (6) End turn button - press if after you have made actions with all your characters.
At the beginning of a battle, you can place your units on the map on the field marked by the game. The size of this field depends on the arena and who initiated the fight: if it was you, the field will be bigger; the field is smaller when a fight was initiated by the enemy. The element of surprise is important, too. The player always starts a turn first. You don't have to look for a cover right after starting a turn - you can use this opportunity to move your characters around.
Special attacks and Bravery points
Special actions depend on Bravery - marked by the orange bar near a character's icon. Every special action requires a certain amount of Bravery points. To replenish them, perform successful actions like hitting a target or dodging an attack. The maximum number of Bravery points depends on Willpower ([WIL]) - you can check it in the character sheet screen. You restore Bravery points by:
- performing successful attacks: +1
- critical attacks: +2
- evading: +1
- healing yourself or allies: +1
- repairing your or allies' armor: +1
Covers can give you full (walls) or partial (objects, fences, etc.) protection from bullets and grenades. Covers are divided into more and less durable - weaker covers reduce the chance of getting hit by 20%; more durable ones decrease the chance of getting hit by 40%. The blue shield marker informs you which type of cover you are using. If the icon isn't full, it means that you are using a partial cover. Look at the picture above - the bricks icon means that you can't shoot nor see enemies standing on both sides; the character from the picture above can't be seen and shot by enemies from the left and the right, this unit also has a great chance of avoiding attacks from the south. An enemy shooting that person from the north will get a clean shot - 100% accuracy.
Important: cover provides protection only when you are very close to it and only when you are standing on the side, not diagonally (near its corner). An enemy shooting at you diagonally while you are hiding behind a horizontal cover has a reduced penalty to accuracy. Covers are an important part of the fights.
The default hit chance of shooting an enemy in open space is 100%. The chance of hitting an enemy behind a cover depends on Dexterity ([DEX]), weapon type and its model (examine a weapon to check its Accuracy) or additional special actions that can be used by some characters specializing in certain types of weapons. Your hit chance decreases when an enemy is standing behind a cover. The same goes for your characters. Melee attacks always have 100% hit chance.
Your characters can heal during fights by using medkits. A character falls unconscious when they lose all health points. If you don't help a fallen ally (marked with KO icon; the timer above their head informs you how much time you have left to help that person - this depends on Endurance [END] stat), you will have to hospitalize them. A hospitalized person is unavailable for the rest of this expedition and the next one. Use medkits to heal a character that was knocked out. Use repair kits to repair their armor.
If you don't want to use medkits, you can regenerate the health of your characters by resting at special points on the map - they are marked with a Tent icon (without any fees, unlimited use).
You can use medkits outside fights. This can also be done when you have opened an event screen (useful when you know that you are about to have a fight).
The red barrels, known from other games, are full of gasoline - they will explode when you shoot them. An explosion deals damage to every unit standing within a radius of one grid, including those standing behind a cover. This is the only use of the explosive barrels in the game. Try to shoot a barrel when more than one enemy is standing next to it. If you have enough luck, the explosion will kill them all. The chance of hitting a barrel is the same as for hitting an enemy - you have less chance at hitting a barrel standing behind a cover.