'Into the Breach' Solved a Big Problem: How to Show Off Your Strategies

Open Thread is where Waypoint staff talk about games and other things we find interesting. This is where you'll see us chat about games, music, movies, TV, and even sports, and welcome you to participate in the discussion.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/ywq99g/into-the-breach-solved-a-big-problem-how-to-show-off-your-strategies

Before anybody gets into the debate about if upper right is North, or if upper left is North, nope.

Up is North. Up left is Northwest, up right is Northeast.


Fighting games mostly, a different one for each fighting game series. Speedrunning is also kinda like that when you want to share techs.

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I actually thought about this topic on Monday’s podcast when Danika used the term “carted” for Monster Hunter. It’s those little changes in langauge that really show how immersive not only the game can be but the community surrounding it.

I had gotten really into FFXIV a while back and you better believe that many of my conversations about that game would’ve been gibberish if you didn’t play it. Using short-hand terms for dungeons, bosses, skills, combos helped for tactical speech during the fight but it also felt like a new language, which adds a little bit of fun to the community surrounding the game.

I haven’t really gotten into Into The Breach’s community, or language, yet despite loving that game. I think I’m approaching the game the same way I approach chess, which is an apt comparison considering how chess-like Into the Breach can be. I’m enjoying it, but I don’t really want to dive into it. I’ll beat it, probably 100% it, but I don’t care about reading up strategies or watching livestreams. It’s just a fun game.

Edit: Now that I’m watching the Battlegrounds stream, the language from squads in Battlegrounds is wild. Since no houses are named, and some locations aren’t, you need to create and learn an entire new language. Things like café are easy, but then my squad also uses the terms asfak (started as ass factory and then shortened), cupcake stand, Triangle face, Ravenholm and quite a few others. Even guns and attachments have slowly gained new names like naming the pistol suppressor after someone in our group who constantly called them out, or calling the SCARL a Scarly Rae Jepson. It’s great when you get new people joining and you have no idea what you’re actually supposed to call things anymore.


This is actual violence


One of the most fun things about playing games with my friends is the growing language we develop to communicate various things to each other. I remember while playing Payday 2 we started to develop language for the special enemies (“just saw a Sam Fisher!”) and for good locations to set up shop (“just found a real nice death funnel”) and the like. This is particularly fun for games where the actual language the game gives you is lackluster for easily communicating what you want. Right now we’re playing Divinity Original Sin 2 and there are a lot of Fantasy Names™ for things so much of our communication sounds a lot like “Alright, so I can mosquito the bug-boy and then on your turn you can chicken them?” And it’s all delightful.


Competitive games require you to learn a bunch of shorthand, sometimes so you can communicate more efficiently, but mostly they are just memes that got cemented into the game’s vocabulary.

Whenever I play overwatch I play ladder and some of the names certain heroes/skills/plays have been given are pretty obvious but others are really far removed.

Some of the terms that aren’t just abbreviations include monkey, gum, juice, hose, boop, whine, baby, bot, q, chain, shout, piggy, bongo, orb, brick and of course goku

It’s not so much a notation, but I put over 1500 hours into Europa Universalis IV. The subreddit and official forums for that game are full of some pretty detailed jargon. Lots of acronyms and even math where people have worked out probabilities and Mean Times to Happen for lots of different events that can happen in the game. One of the most detailed guides for the game is all about how to obtain Personal Unions. It’s massively detailed.

Hope it’s OK to mention tsports here! I’ve gotten into baseball scoring, which is a weird traditional form of notation that everyone does differently. It’s interesting because there’s sort of a shared base of notation, but each person puts their own spin on it based on what makes sense to them. I like to take my scorebook to games because it helps me focus on what’s going on on the field instead of on the big video boards.


Fighting games for sure. Especially the airdasher community’s form of notation.

Austin, that last round is a nightmare, and a really fun puzzle to solve. (My solution was almost identical to yours, except I used the artillery to push the Hornet Leader into the environmental square and let the beetle hit the bomb instead, because fuck those Leader bugs.) And I love that it required a bit of everything - main weapons, sub weapons, even pilot abilities. (I looked at it for a good fifteen minutes before I figured out that the Laser Mech’s pilot let it walk through enemies.)

As I’ve been playing, I’ve wondered if there’ll be an Into the Breach speedrunning or racing community. Hell, there probably is already, and I’m just not aware of it. Seems like it’d be a pretty fertile soil for a bunch of special nomenclature.

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Having played way too much Into the Breach and comparing it ad nauseam to Battle Chess, I think this notation is really cool and useful.

But even more so, the notation makes me wonder if there could ever be a two player version of the game, so you could actually play it competitively against another person. It would obviously need some mechanical changes and tuning, but that would be really interesting.

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As of when I last checked, the world record was held by someone cheesing the science ice mech.

Sub-5 minute feudal with no boar lure? 11

Man, fucking FEZ broke my brain with its secret language thing. One of the greatest thing’s ever in videogames as far as I’m concerned and the most literal “I am Neo and can now see the Matrix” moment I’ve ever experienced.

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absolutely same, i might still have notebooks filled with scribblings of arcane symbols trying to figure out that game. Fez is really on another level.

Before the addition of any sort of “Daily Single Turn Puzzle” feature, they’re going to have to increase weapon upgrade clarity in the UI… Sometimes you need to use a weapon right now to remind yourself that you put enough power in to increase the utility (as opposed to damage numbers, which are generally much clearer)

The main moment that comes to mind, regarding notation, is in Monkey Island 4 there was a combat system with different stances named after different apes, heavily inspired by Hong Kong kung-fu movies.
It worked on a rock-paper-scissors system where one style is strong against another and weak against something else.
The weaknesses and strengths were randomized so one single gamefaq could not cover it.
So I think anyone playing HAD to write down what they found out when beating monkeys in the jungle or the game would be impossible.

It was the best part of the game.