I think you should take few more breaths and relax. This game is good though it has some performance flaws that was never fixed - they did it in Afterlight which is even more hard.
To outline a few of my immediate peeves, weapons take forever to load and fire, we have 4 soldiers that we can't replace (not endlessly anyway) yet they start off with no protection and die almost instantly, the medikits don't heal 'permanent damage' so after a few seconds of waiting the guy will be stuck throughout the mission with a tiny sliver of life, and the whole base building/resource gathering and R&D aspect of the game is complete crap!
What - you want uber soldiers at start? Start is always the hardest and you start with few rebels that never hold a gun. The guns will fire faster when your soldier level up. It was the same in AM - soldiers with low agility and dexterity were slow at aiming, walking etc. I think you don't get the idea of sudden rebelion.
About the medkits - that is the medic skill for.... there wasn't permament dmg in aftermath - it is good now - soldier got injured and only special trained medics can heal your wounds. Are you able to fix you broken bone by using simple bandages?
The base building is not a crap - it limits your expansion. What, you want to have all the territory in 1h of gameplay ? Researches are divided into categories - more planing = bad ? Everything has its place
Pathfinding is actually worse in Aftershock than in Aftermath and for some reason the maximum resolution is tiny with virtually no ability to zoom out at all. The stupid constant pausing is back just like in Aftermath so I've already switched off everything but 'alien spotted' (because really what else matters??) Thing is, in this game you aren't even shown where that alien is when the game pauses, why not? That was a nice feature in Aftermath!
I think you are imagining things - the pathfinding is the same. You can zoom in zoom out just the same and as always on pause camera can auto target alien - maybe you have switched too many options off?
The 'cutscenes' if they can be called such, are just awful. Not only have the speeches been written by children, they've been read out by monosylabic morons. They look awful, sound rubbish and just don't fit into the game at all!
There have been worse releases.
I think I'm going to boot the thing up again and fast forward until I have some better weapons and armour for me boys. Sadly it takes over a day to produce 1 suit of the stuff so it'll be some time but hey I'm in no hurry. These mutants and Cyborgs have survived down here for 50 years (and destroyed the Biomass). In fact I wonder why it is exactly they can't beat the aliens when they so easily kick my arse every time we meet... Strange...
If such things irritate you - don't play Afterlight on Impossible - you will have to plan everything up 0.0001s to survive the 75% of the game. And I have even finished Impossible on the rebalanced mod that some one said it is impossible to play on impossible. Too bad that mod never got finished.
The new BIG problem with this game though is that the research tree simply doesn't exist, it's just a random jumble of nonsense in whatever order the designers felt like placing it! I now have no ammunition for ANY weapon in my arsenal... That's from shotguns and rifles to lasers and launchers. I have dozens of firearms but not a single clip for any, and thanks to the utterly ridiculous R&D system, I can't obtain anymore either... Seriously? I'm able to build massive military and scientific installations on a barren world but my eggheads can't run me out a few clips of ammo for a bleedin' M4?
There is a reaserch tree. Everything has its own category - weapons lab for weapons - energy labs for energy weapons, propulsion labs for spaceships etc. maybe you forgot to resaerch ammo somewhere and head straight for guns ?
Another massive confusion for me is the fact that my guys have now reached the point where they can knock out an alien with just a few rounds each (before they ran out of ammo of course...) but it seems to be utterly impossible for them to actually KILL an unconscious enemy. I just had all 5 (seriously WHY can I not have SEVEN!!?!?!) of my troops clustered around an unconscious Transgenant firing aimed shots at it and they ran out of ammo without killing it...
I'm guessing it is the flat fish some kind of alien - it is like firing at lobsterman with gauss - use laser on that fucking thing.
This might just be me, what with a military background and all, but once an enemy is lying at your feet unconscious and unarmed, one shot from any weapon should probably be enough to finish it off...
Too much X-Com grenade killing
and I can say that in X-Com I couldn't kill stunned alien with anything except explosives (Apocalypse excluded).
So if someone can tell me why it's impossible to kill unconscious enemies without dropping an A-bomb on them and how the hell I maintain ammo supplies I'd be very grateful. Frankly I'm entirely baffled by the whole thing and I kind of wish now that I'd just stopped playing after Aftermath and given the whole franchise an 'ok' rating. For those who are interested it's now dropped significantly to a 'wtf' rating...
Reticulans - resistant to laser - anything else kills them fast
Flying stars (can't remember names) - kiled by everything - the problem is they are very accurate and deal heavy dmg - priorty target
Fish like mantas - very resistant to everything - kill with lasers.
Brainsomething alien - kill with anything
Human mutant - kill with anything
I am guessing that if you start fighting with cultist your head will explode because of the difficulty - and later you will probably throw the CD out of window because of one special defence mission
Also what I would like to say that AS isn't that broken at late game as AM was with stupid PSI. When you had like 75% of map and aliens had many bases + mostly you saw battleships - you could forget about weapons - you had to have psi weapons just to survive any base attack missions. I preferred to do any other thing than fighting this stupid crap. Not to mention deathbellows gallore.... In one open forest mission I had like 30 of them.... I had to like run run run run run run - shot, repeat about 100 times to get rid of them.