This deep strategy game provides a unique experience thanks to its evolving espionage story, rich customization, and gameplay that keeps players hooked. A standout feature of Phantom Doctrine is its deep customization options: Players can tailor characters, field teams, and weapons to suit their play style. You're also given freedom to work through missions slowly and methodically, or kill whatever moves. These options may seem like common sense, but your choices can be the difference between successfully completing a scenario or horribly failing it. Along with the deep mission play, the game is visually incredible, and its use of voice-overs, as well as documents to drive investigations, sets an amazing tone for an espionage thriller.
Where the game stumbles is that it borrows too heavily from standard strategy features. Players have to tactically plan their attacks because of movement restrictions and limited action points, which hampers the ground characters can cover and what they can do once they arrive at their destination. This can be a bit frustrating when you're trying to save a teammate, only to find that action points are exhausted, leaving a character out in the open in a gunfight. And some other elements of combat were strange. For example, a character could be hidden by objects or even tucked into a doorway, and yet some enemy soldiers could seemingly bend bullets around corners or through cover to inevitably hit your team. Overall, though, Phantom Doctrine is a deep espionage game that's long on strategy with a solid story, as well as great graphical elements and environments that should give gamers lots of reasons to dive in and stop this global threat.