So far as I have noticed, the difficulty really relies on Miniboss/Coward spam and you not equipping Plasma Rifle.
If you use a weapon that’s not strong enough to take out cowards in one hit, you’re bound to get slapped with a coward waste you didn’t notice in time at one point. Even worse when they show up in cramped waves like Corridor Shooter and Pulsating/Palpitating Grid, where you have barely any space to dodge.
If you use a weapon that’s too strong, the game becomes way too easy. Plasma is a sole example, where it’s AoE combined with the extreme amount of damage it can cause, really rips waves apart.
If the wave decides to spam Armored Chickens/Chickenauts/Slobs at you, you’re almost guaranteed to die if you didn’t bring any special weapons whatsoever. It’s near impossible to survive one without anything short of luck. This is not a thing that should happen. Waves should be completely beatable without having to rely on Special Weapons.
If I have to sum it up: The wave generation system needs a change. Certain waves SHOULD NOT use a specific type of chicken/Exclusively spawn minibosses only.
Difficulty should not rely on spamming the most annoying enemy types. It should be more on clever, fair, and/or advantageous enemy type positioning. Let me provide some examples:
Have Minibosses be at the very top of Chicken Rings where there is time to react to their attacks, instead of the very bottom where there is almost no time to react to the bullet spam. However, this is compensated by the fact that the minibosses will be the last thing you kill.
In Pulsating/Palpitating Grid, cowards SHOULD NOT spawn. If you do not have a weapon that’s capable of taking them out properly, you’re going to be wrecked by a ton of waste coming straight for you in a very small space to maneuver. Even worse when you already have to deal with UFOs and potentially Chickenauts/Armored Chickens. This also means that shooting the bombs in the 4 corners is almost a death sentence when cowards are present.
If minibosses are going to spawn, do not have them spawn too close to the player. It’s best to put them only on the outermost ring, where they can at least have more time to react.
At the same time, let me touch on Bullet Visibility.
In waves with a lot of enemies, projectiles are going to be a little more difficult to see. But with you spamming your weapon all over the place, some of the enemy projectiles blend in, which makes them even harder to spot.
Enemy Projectiles should be made easier to spot. I have died countless times to bullets that were completely concealed by either food drops, and my own weapon. Along with the need to focus on so many other bullets that I don’t even see the one bullet that’s flying right towards my ship.
This is the main problem in SSH as well, where projectile speed is higher than usual. Not being able to spot bullets quickly enough, or at all, will get you killed.
Feel free to post your opinion. I believe I’m not the only one who feels this way.