XCOM: Diary Of A Wimpy Squad #2 – First Blood

You know how I said doing ‘Meet The Squad‘ was probably a futile endeavour? Well, two things happened.

Number one, my PC’s secondary hard drive, where the ‘My Games’ folder is kept, had a wobble, which corrupted my XCOM Iron Man save. Not a huge issue as I was mere moments into the game, but the randomly-generated nature of the soldiers means that John’s now a dude and Kieron’s now a girl. Perhaps that is as it should be. Other than that, it’s the same setup as before.

Number two, half the squad got themselves killed. (Note – ‘got themselves.’ It definitely wasn’t my fault. Nuh-uh.)

With everyone healed and ready, we’re off on our first mission proper. Three nations are beset by Terror simultaneously, but we pick Argentina to help in this instance. Partly this is because we really like flame-grilled steak, but mostly it’s because the reward of four Engineers if we succeed will be super-useful for building stuff with.


We’re barely on the ground before the first Sectoids appear.

Walker takes one out with his first shot. This means Walker now has four kills under his belt and is in the running to be our highest-ranking soldier. Oh man, that just ain’t right.

Gillen misses repeatedly, which surprises nobody.

Rossignol silently explodes most of a supermarket with his rocket launcher, just to get one measly Sectoid.

Meer, our sniper, is forever out of range of the enemies and spends most of the mission trotting along uselessly behind the rest of the squad. People do say that about me.

Walker, bursting inelegantly through a plate-glass window into a building, finds and kills another Sectoid with just one shot. Walker, of all people. What is going on here?

Meer, bored of dawdling at the back, gets up to the roof. From there he spots two Sectoids on another roof nearby, and coolly snipes one. Meer is so cool. You just wouldn’t believe how amazingly cool he is. If you saw him, you’d want to be him.

The others are slowly running through the buildings to reach the other Sectoid. As in so many things, they just can’t keep up with Meer.

Upon arrival Rookie Gillen gets his first kill, ending the mission and earning him a promotion. Assault! That means we’ve got the full class roster. And everyone’s still alive. Good work team. Now, get a dustpan and brush and go collect all those mushy bits of exploded Sectoid to take home in a doggy bag.

Home, James [Rossignol].

Back at base, we’re too short on money to do anything useful, so we watch the world spin for a little while. Soon enough, we get our first UFO sighting. For a moment, we consider how awesomely momentous a moment this is. Alien life, extraterrestrial technology, soaring across our humble skies! Then we blast it with missiles.

This first Interception offers little resistance, which means before too long the alien bird goes down, and our team is en route to scour the crash site.



We walk’n’Overwatch across the map, taking forever but failing to turn up any enemies. Eventually, we’re right at the door of the alien ship, which is in a terrible state. With no foes in sight, all we can do is creep inside it and see what’s in there. Walker, you go first.

Walker? Talk to me, Walker!

Oh, Walker.

The ship’s ‘captain’, the energy-creature known as an Outsider, was lurking behind the UFO’s power source, from where it was able to take Walker out with a single shot from its plasma rifle. Sleep now, brave prince. And you never even had an opportunity to fail to heal someone. First blood. We will always remember you. We will always remember how your pathetic death cost us a vital line of a sight to the one enemy we’d found on this map, and now we don’t know where it is again.

Gillen is next on the scene, sensibly taking cover against the corner of the UFO, hoping to spot and flank the Outsider. Unfortunately, he has an audience. Four Sectoids skitter on from the left and eyeball him. He manages to take one out, but then he’s just stuck there, flanked, in deadly danger. Rossignol and Meer are too far behind to be able to help him out. Things don’t look good for the inventor of games journalism.

The first of the three remaining Sectoids hits. But he doesn’t kill. Maybe Gillen will live to proselytise another day. The second Sectoid aims…. and misses! Phew. Just one more miss and the writer of Chaos League will live to pen another manifesto.

No such luck. The former Minister Drill-Cock is, alas, no more.

Grimly, Meer and Rossignol clear up the mess without issue. Heavy Rossignol’s rocket launcher takes out two of the Sectoids in one fell swoop, Meer snipes the outsider and the last Sectoid eats cannonfire.

So, we go home, reduced to half our former glory. We are very sad.

But at least Walker is no longer our best soldier, eh? For every cloud…

Replacements are now urgently needed. We could really do with a new Support soldier first and foremost, as wounds won’t heal themselves in the field. Will it be Rookie Quintin Smith, who by sheer coincidence has a bit less Will than everyone else?

I haven’t seen Quinns in ages so I don’t know what his hair looks like now, but I would imagine it’s a blond Guile ‘do. His favourite colour is orange, and he hopes to be a sniper when he grows up.

Or perhaps it will be Rookie Tim Stone?

Favourite colour unknown, but I’ve given him a red suit because he probably likes the Red Baron.

With Rossignol currently hospitalised from a glancing Plasma Pistol shot, we need a third new recruit too. There are rumours of a super-soldier by the name of A. Smith, but now is not his time: he will arrive later, to light our darkest, most horrendously over-worked hour, as legend dictates.

For now, welcome aboard Rookie Lewie Procter.

Favourite colour unknown, but I’ve given him a hot pink suit because I miss having a hot pink suit in the field now Gillen’s dead. Lewie is a woman.

While the new folk start learning the ropes, our R&D dept start poking Sectoid corpses with sharp things while Engineering constructs an Alien Containment Chamber.

We cool our heels for a while, and then:


The creepy, shadowy bald guy who speaks for the global Council asks us to do a special mission – escorting some dude safely away from aliens. With Jim still ‘gravely wounded’ (it was only one hit FFS you wimp) the now-Corporal Meer is the only officer in the field. The three rookies accompany him.

We encounter Thin Men for the first time, although their tendency to spawn on top of the large metal shipping containers in this level makes them easy prey for Meer’s increasingly shit-hot sniping skills.

Stone takes a critical hit almost immediately. Oh no! Who will tell us how aeroplanes work now? Wait – he’s still alive. Only just, and he’ll be dead within three turns, but fortunately one of the squad is carrying a Medkit. Oh, Goddamnit, it’s Meer. The only guy on the team who can shoot straight, but instead he’s got to waste a couple of turns running over to Stone’s bleeding body and practice his best CPR.

Meanwhile, the civilian darts from shipping container to shipping container, only narrowly surviving a blast from an Overwatching Thin Man.

Fortunately, Smith & Procter (sounds like an estate agent) recover from the freak-outs they had when Stone went down and manage to bag a kill each. Meanwhile, Meer stabilises Stone and returns to the fray. One more Sectoid down and the path is clear for the civvy to get out of here.

We all go home alive. Well, one of us is going to be in a coma for weeks, but alive is alive.

Back at base, there are rewards for a successful mission all around, except for that pussy Stone. Smith becomes a Heavy. Procter becomes Support.

Meer, meanwhile, is promoted to Sergeant, and with it is granted the nickname ‘Zulu.’ Awesome.

And with a Sergeant on the team, we can now build the Officer Training School and then upgrade squad size to 5. Rossignol’s back in the game, but Stone’s out for a while. So we need another fifth soldier. But… who?

(I just realised the character I named after myself apparently has one squinty eye. Huh.)


  1. MrMud says:

    The aliens just let you leave as soon as you got to the civie?
    When I play they always seem to teleport into flanking positions on my squad.

    • Alec Meer says:

      That’s usually the case, but in this instance the civvy is with us from the start of the mission and we have to get him to the other side of the map, with new aliens arriving all the while.

    • Trithne says:

      The mission you’re referring to drove me to a fit of rage today. Upon getting the civvie to the Skyranger, I’m given a new objective to kill all the remaining aliens. The situation:

      My two assaults are dead, from Thin Men magically appearing behind my lines via mission scripting (utterly stupid). My support is on 1HP with no Medkit charges left. I have a heavy. The remaining aliens (that I know of) are a pair of Sectoids at the far end of the map, in a nice defensive spot with little cover on the way over there. I weigh up my options and decide that discretion is the better part of valour; we’ve got our man, let’s go.

      Nope. Aborting is a mission fail. You don’t get anything.

      • Reefpirate says:

        I suppose having a fail state if you want to pull out early with the VIP is kind of a downer. However, the ‘magically appearing thin men’ (it’s not magic, it’s sci-fi… There’s freaking aliens, remember?) are not so bad. When they arrive they are on overwatch so you get some free shots at them.

        • Astroman says:

          Exactly, it’s sci-fi. The game designers have free reign. Someone thought it would be fun to fight against teleporting aliens that can poison you.

          I played through the original Xcom when it appeared on steam a year ago and so far the “Classic” difficulty in Enemy Unknown has a lot more cheap unpredictable deaths.

          Also, my sniper had 89% chance to hit. I missed twice. Classic Firaxis, always defying the odds to kill me.

        • Trithne says:

          They arrive in overwatch, which is fine except in this case they were lucky(?) and both landed outside of fire arcs available to me, meaning I had to move to get a shot, and both of them hit (and killed from full!) with their overwatch shots. Should’ve probably just waited it out and seen what they did. Thin Men are amazingly annoying though.

          As for fail states – It’s more that ALL missions are binary: you either succeed fully (casualties notwithstanding) or fail totally. Full success is still full success, there’s no doing what you can and getting out while the going’s good. It annoys me because for a game that’s supposed to be about making judgement calls, you can’t make them in this regard. You can’t smash and grab, stun an alien, drag him to the Skyranger and bolt, you stun the alien and if you can’t finish his friends anywhere on the map too bad.

      • Filden says:

        It seems to me that most of the missions that feature an incoming enemy drop give you a heads up radar with red dots showing where they are coming in. In any event, the Thin Men in that level drop in Overwatch, so you get a free round to kill them if they drop in behind you. If a player leaves their VIP in the back unguarded, they probably deserve to fail. Their poison mortars do suck, but it makes them scary, and I’ve never actually lost anyone due to poison on Classic difficulty. It’s more of a nuisance.

        For my part, my Classic squads are usually so Overwatched that anything as flimsy as a Thin Man is dead before it hits the ground if it drops anywhere near me.

        That said, there is a mission that, as near as I can tell, is specifically designed to wipe your entire team the first time you play it. It involves a structure full of Mutons, who run off the roof to jump down all over the place, including behind the player if he gets suckered in to the kill zone. Hence the peril of playing (non-default) Ironman on a first play-through.

  2. Ian says:

    Poor Walker. :(

    I was quite enjoying envisioning him as a crashes-through-windows Ultimate Badass.

    • Lambchops says:

      Poor Walker.

      His new strategy of healing with bullets was an interesting ploy but it appears that he is, alas, still a terrible healer.

      • ArthurBarnhouse says:

        The healing with bullets ploy was partially a misunderstanding. He thought he was Roland from Borderlands.

    • Arathain says:

      In both my first horribly unsuccessful RPS game and my current run John Walker is nearly always the man to make that crucial shot. Badass indeed. Sadly, he’s also dead in my game, having, oddly enough, run inside a UFO and panicked after taking some reaction fire.

      My Heavy, Sgt. Alec ‘Hulk’ Meer is quite the alien killer, though.

  3. Dubbill says:

    No Squinty Eye tag?

  4. Milky1985 says:

    Once you run out of RPS names you could start using specially selected reader names. Then we can feel part of the story and special and you can revel in sending the readers you don’t like into danger and to their deaths in grisly ways!

    • McDan says:

      Great idea, as I’m sure all the writers will die (through no fault of Sgt. Meers tactical mastery) and they’ll be a shortage of recruit names. Already loving this diary series.

      • YogSo says:

        Er, guys, Alec already addressed this issue in the first part of his diary:

        The nature and length of an XCOM campaign means this would be a fifty million part series that prevented me from writing any other posts for the next decade, were I to go the full distance. So I have a number of pre-determined stopping points in my head. The first of these is if/when I run out RPS writers to name them after; the second is complete, dismal failure of the game (i.e. if too many nations withdraw funding from my useless project); others I will make clear if and when they happen. OK? OK!

        (Emphasis mine.)

        • Milky1985 says:

          I know he said that, but judging by the luck so far it will be finished in the next write up at the rate they are going through staff members! My idea was a suggestion on a way to avoid this stopping point and instead hit another of the stopping points he had in his head.

          Its not like people don’t write stuff down and then change their mind about it later, look at Ubisoft for some good examples of that :P

          • cspkg says:

            *this*. I don’t want this diary to end too quickly. A couple of weeks at least should be a fair run. But I’m selfish like that.

  5. Lambchops says:

    Oh Tim, after all those hours in simulated combat you’d think he’d manage to avoid being hit straight away!

  6. tigershuffle says:

    oh bother …..RPS have convinced me to spend some more of my childrens inheritance on my pc.
    Well done. Will now tweet KG about his hot pink demise :D

    • Dozer says:

      Did anyone else misread that as “hot pink chemise”? There is a mental image I do not want.

  7. apocraphyn says:

    Been missing these kinds of diary write-ups. Bravo, Mr Zulu. Bravo.

  8. ChainsawHands says:

    Kieron’s now a girl, you say? link to twitpic.com

  9. jezcentral says:

    Alas, it was never worth renaming the marines in the original, until later on, when you got armour/med-kits/etc, otherwise you would get through all your school-mates/work-colleagues, family members, cast members of your favourite TV show AND a list of foot-to-ballers who just won the one international cap for England and still run out of names.

    • Carbonated Dan says:

      a good player can handle the early missions comfortably, but classic ironman xcom will soon tear them a second asshole, specially for the sodomy

      I understand concerns about difficulty in this age of ‘dumbing down’ but seriously, pretending xcom’s gentler than x-com is like claiming one direction are fouler than the jonas bros

      • jezcentral says:

        CarboDan, I’m not pretending anything. :) I hadn’t even played the new game when I made this comment, so I wasn’t comparing anything to anything.

    • ArthurBarnhouse says:

      It’s funny, I don’t care about characters’ names, I keep track of them by their nickname. My top squad member isn’t Debbie Marie or whatever, to me she’s Sentinal.

      • JuJuCam says:

        I do the same thing! I also like to make up stories in my head about how they acquired their monikers. sometimes it’s obvious from game context. My heavy was promoted to callsign-worthiness after a mission in which he blew up six or seven floaters and a thin man here or there in a single blast of his rocket launcher. There wasn’t much left for the others to do after that. We call him Hulk.

  10. pupsikaso says:

    Once you run out of RPS staff to murder, will you start taking names from the readers? :)

  11. AmateurScience says:

    I made the terrible, terrible mistake of naming my first squad after me and my three best mates. That error made the subsequent annihilation of the squad* all the more traumatic. I think for the foreseeable I’ll stick to the generated names.

    *we’d secured and disarmed a bomb with no casualties but were subsequently ambushed by three thin men, one of the squad took a plasma shot to the face, 2 more panicked and were cut down. The last man (me) fought bravely against overwhelming odds but was overrun and killed. It was quite shocking how quickly things went to shit.

    • TormDK says:

      Agreed, I’ve rage quitted twice now because my avatar soldier ends up dead in the hands of mutons, or Crysalid zombies.

      • S Jay says:

        My rule is that I am the commander, so I am not on the field.

        • MrLebanon says:

          same here, Leb is pulling the strings behind the scenes he does not go on the field!

  12. sonofsanta says:

    There’s mod support for XCOM, right? Someone should mod in the name generator and sound effects from Worms 2.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      I was just thinking the same thing, most of the characters in games where they can be named are named after my old worms squad. Biriani and Pasty Bloater are always present. My other naming protocol is the ‘Master of Magic” hero roster.

      • melnificent says:

        Pretty easy to mod the pre-generated names. Just go to C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\XCom-Enemy-Unknown\XComGame\Config and edit the DefaultNameList.ini file.

        It’s interesting to see in this multicultural world that they have separated out the stereotypical names to regions.

        • ArthurBarnhouse says:

          Is there a similar .ini file for nicknames? I’m curious to see that list and/or add to it.

          • melnificent says:

            ofc there is….. and it has all the best text related stuff in too.
            had to change ALIEN ACTIVITY to ALIENS PROBING…. Well that is what they do after all.

            Goto C:Program Files (x86)SteamsteamappscommonXCom-Enemy-UnknownXComGameLocalizationINT and open XcomGame.int I used WORDPAD on it just fine.

            Search for [XGCharacterGenerator] and the nicknames are all listed under there…. just change and save…… Worms squads can live again :D

            Also [XSpecialMissions] contains the special escort missions names.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Might want to take a copy of your customised files, in case they get overwritten by a patch?

        • MrLebanon says:

          well I highly doubt you’ll meet a Saudi Arabian named Solomon Goldberg

  13. Carbonated Dan says:

    This is Classic Ironman right? Oh goody :D

    • obie191970 says:

      The only way to play. Damn, it drives you bonkers.

    • Rivosyke says:

      “Classic” mode gives you situations where you shoot a thin man who is clearly not in cover (standing on a container) with 3 people, who all miss. He then critically hits you for 9 points with his pistol from a ridiculous range…on mission number 3. How would impossible mode be, 15 points on mission 1?

  14. UK_John says:

    Anyone find it a little strange that a “re-imagining” of a 1994 game is the very first AAA PC game that will only work on Win 7?!

    Having said that, I have already heard that a hex edit of the xcom exe to point to an XP file rather than a Win 7 file that does the same will allow the game to work on XP. I don’t expect we’ll wait long for that “fixed exe”! :)

    • jonfitt says:

      Upgrade, it’s great! I skipped Vista, and went to 7. I have not regretted it one iota. 7 is a modern operating system and is a fine replacement to XP.

    • MrLebanon says:

      considering XP is outdated 10 years, soon to b not supported by microsoft, and not sold for the past 3-4 years… it facking makes sense that we ditch DX9 for the new DX11 and let XP die.

      Now I’m of a younger generation, but did people way back when bitch when Doom would not run on their commodore 64s?

      • ArthurBarnhouse says:

        I think it was just that XP was the default for so long that people didn’t like when Vista and 7 came along.

        • MrLebanon says:

          i certainly hated vista….

          but 7 was nothing but an improvement over XP in my books (and any little minor annoyances like UAC and driver signing are easily diabled). It’s to the point that on my XP work PC i have 3rd party applications to give it some 7-ish capabilities (how does one multitask with no aerosnap!?!)

          And of course there is the business side of it. I’m not well known on the whole application creation/programing side of things but I’d imagine two hurdles of having it xp compatible
          1) Having to make it DX9 compatible
          2) Even if the above was simple, having that available would mean they would have to support it. Glitches/bugs unique to XP systems only? That’s money they have to spend on finding out what the problem is, how to fix it, and patching/providing customer support as to how to fix it. All that for a relatively small player base. If it’s going to cost more money than it’s worth, and take away man hours from actual important tasks and put them towards solving problems with a 10 year old OS…….

      • Dave Mongoose says:

        The point is that there’s no reason the game shouldn’t be able to run on XP – it wouldn’t have taken much extra effort on the part of the developers.

        It seems an odd restriction to enforce – if they didn’t want to deal with tech support for it they can just state that it’s unsupported.

        • DrGonzo says:

          Well it would have taken some extra effort, otherwise they would have made it compatible obviously. They will have looked at total sales from xp users, costs of making it work on xp and supporting it, and it lost.

        • Joshua Northey says:

          It is not an odd restriction, it is 2012.

        • MacTheGeek says:

          I think they’ve stated pretty clearly, by their actions, that XP is not supported.

        • LionsPhil says:

          It would mean maintaining and testing a DX9 backend.

          Since it’s Firaxis, they prrrrrrrrobably are building on their existing Civ4/5 codebase, but there’s still effort involved there, and presumably someone made a business call that the ~15% of people who can’t do DX10 according to the Steam Hardware Survey (so bear in mind this will include random laptops for playing SpaceChem on) are not worth the cost in development, testing, and bugfixing time vs. myriad other things they could be doing.

          • RegisteredUser says:

            AFAIK all three UE3 games that are currently saying XP isn’t “supported” only use DX9 (Borderlands 2 for sure, Dishonored for sure as well and blog says works on XP, but “drivers not supported” and XCOM, which another guy already said got a hex-edit fix already) and there is no real reason other than not having to provide official support or some sinister Microsoftish conspiracy stuff that games made for console(all 3 of them are) should need more than XP.

      • crinkles esq. says:

        A more apt comparison would be Quake 1. It only ran on the new Pentium 1 chips. If you had a 386/486, sorry Charlie.

    • mike2R says:

      Just to note that the hack works great. Absolutely rock solid on my 5 – 6 year old XP install. And they told me I’d have to join the modern world :)

      link to forums.steampowered.com
      If anyone is interested.

    • Unaco says:

      It doesn’t require Windows 7… It will work with Vista as well (going by Steam Store Page Minimum Requirements). Given that, it’s hardly the first game to require Vista or later. Just Cause 2, or Shattered Horizon both require DX10/11, and hence Vista or later only, for example.

  15. Strangerator says:

    I think I might be the only one who doesn’t go to town with the names and faces of my soldiers. I like to take them as they are, and develop their backstories in my head if they survive long enough. It’s weird how you form attachments to the randomly generated buggers.

    • Caleb367 says:

      I just had a randomly generated dude who looks incredibly similar to Abraham from the Walking Dead comic. And he’s just as badass. *tears of joy*

    • ArthurBarnhouse says:

      I am generally the same way, but I sometimes change characters because the character generator can make people look really similar to each other. Also my recruits have been pretty white.

  16. Joshua Northey says:

    This game has been great and nothing but goodness despite a few annoyances.

    One thing I would say is that if you aren’t playing ironman (as I didn’t in my first campaign), make sure to save often. I think on ironman it auto-saves so this isn’t as much of a problem (I am only one 4 hour session into my ironman playthrough on classic, but not one guy has died yet!).

    I lost one whole 4+ hour session to a CTD about 30 seconds before I beat the game.

    • gbcrush says:

      I have to ask. Is it a matter of research shard, build key, assault base, happy ending? My game yesterday, I learned about the skeleton key, saw the change to the strategy map, and wondered if I was surprisingly close to ending the war 3 months in.

      Or is it a matter of “ha, now you know what you have to do, but we’re going to twist the path much more than you think?”. Feel freeto tell me that answering will ruin the game. I :am: loving the tension its built (not to mention I’ve gone and reloaded back half a month last night)

      • clive dunn says:

        Attack the base, you’ll be fine. It’s just a stepping stone. Naturally, go with your best squad – it can be tricky.

      • Joshua Northey says:

        The base is not close to the end of the game, if that is what you are asking.

    • LennyLeonardo says:

      You can turn on autosave in the options. I think it saves with the same frequency of an ironman game, so obviously you’ll need to create your own saves regularly as well if you want to reload after a disaster.

      • Joshua Northey says:

        Oh I don’t do reloading. It is heresy where I come from. But I didn’t do my first game ironman in case I made a legitimate interface mistake (like I ordered 10 firestorms instead of 1).

        After my first playthrough it is clear this isn’t very likely so I am switching to ironman for my second.

  17. DXN says:

    Started a new campaign. First three missions, over half the kills were bagged by a badass female assault by the name of ‘DJ’, smashing through windows and doors and shotgunning x-rays in the face. So coooool~~~ <3 You really do get attached to your grunts!

    • MrLebanon says:

      just wait til she dies

      • gbcrush says:

        I went a whole day and a half without reloading (I used to reload all the time in x-com 1 through 3). Happily I learned to love the white-knuckle joy of watching my troopers cut to pieces, of letting the skyranger come back with victorious, but beaten and grieving squad mates, and immediately viewing The Wall to pay tribute to the recently lost.

        It had a way of tempering promotion announcements with a sense ‘this came with too awful a price’.

        …and then, …and then I had a rising bad ass take a massive critical hit, and my heart just broke. I hit reload because I saw what survinvg these did to lesser troopers, and I thought that it would have been kinder for her to die. :(

        • MrLebanon says:

          some of these deaths nearly have me in tears. Even on not a full fledged badass…. sometimes its just the context.

          I took on a horrendous mission where I lost 3 of my best soldiers. On top of that – a rookie – went down, but I was able to get him stabilized

          The 5th guy managed to kill the last few aliens.

          So that rookie having been stabilized had to spend a good 14 or so days in a coma. His next mission back in business maybe 3 days out of the infirmary, he gets shot point blank by a panicked sniper sargent.

          It wasn’t so much that he had importance to my team or a nifty name. But the fact that I brought him back to life, he had his second chance, and then he died to something so trivial in a mission that otherwise was a cakewalk.

          It was heartbreaking…. That rookie had potential

      • Lowbrow says:

        I lost my most badass sniper the mission after I had ranked her up to Colonel (37 kills 19 missions). She had the best nickname I’ve seen so far, Lady Grey, but that didn’t stop a one hit crit from a muton when I got a little too aggressive with her.

        I’ve found in my limited experience that an early squad wipe can kill a classic hardcore game, but you can somewhat absorb losses once you have a roster developed.

  18. Radiant says:

    All this violence because you can’t talk to the monsters.

  19. melnificent says:

    Interesting DLC stuff in the files too…..

    ; DLC 1 (Slingshot) Maps
    ; DLC 2 (Progeny) Maps

  20. gbcrush says:

    Here’s a way to tie three comment-contentious games together!

    I never really renamed my soldiers in the x-com games, aside from adding a squad+role code as a suffix (essential for me once the ranks swell), or retitling the ‘undesirables’ as FIRE ME.

    No, coincidentally enough, the Firaxis games stole all of my renaming since the days of Civ 2. In fact, I have an unfinished SMAC game somewhere with Mass Effect related colonies. :D

  21. clive dunn says:

    My xcom playthrough inhabits a universe where the Beat Writers become the worlds only hope instead of a bunch of hopped up jazz poets.
    Jack Kerouac seems to have risen to the top the fastest and currently enjoys mind controlling aliens (every time he whispers, ‘your mind is mine’ I get a silly thrill).
    Allen ‘howl’ Ginsberg is second in command and deals out his hot plasma justice from the rooftops.
    William ‘junky’ Burroughs is my deadeye sniper but he prefers to just use a pistol. He’s particularly good at mind flaying and necking stimpacks. He enjoys a fractious relationship with
    Joan ‘headshot’ Burroughs who seems oblivious to our reality where Bill shot her dead attempting to shoot an apple of her head.
    Brion ‘dreamachine’ Gysin is the squad medic but most of the time he’s running gungho into battle shooting aliens with his laser rifle (he won’t use any other gun apparently).

    I fucking love this game.

  22. Jeremy says:

    So.. this might seem really unimportant, but I’m a little bummed that I can’t change armor colors and such. Is there some kind of post release intended for those of us who didn’t pre- order?

    • MrLebanon says:

      I believe it is/will be a purchasable DLC.
      Stupid right?

      • aepervius says:

        CHanging armor color is a DLC and not the standard setup ? That is really dreadful. And beyond pale.

    • melnificent says:

      It’s one of about 12 possible settings spread across about 5 files…… Keep an eye on this page, I’m just running through some tests now and should have something within the hour

      update:- found it. C:Program Files (x86)SteamsteamappscommonXCom-Enemy-UnknownXComGameDLCPCConsoleDLC_PackInConfig open XComGame.ini and change the false to true. I’ve added the config contents incase it’s not in the preorder versions.

      Let me know if it does/doesn’t work. As I’m testing from a preorder version :D

      ; Enable armor customization

      • Jeremy says:

        Oh, that’s great, I’ll have to give that a shot when I get back home. Thanks for the time and effort!

  23. Crazy Horse says:

    It really annoys me that you cannot edit country flag and sex on your squad. I like recreating squads from various fiction works but it’s a real pain to do so. Hope it’s possible to be modded.

    • Rivosyke says:

      There’s an achievement (flight of the valkries or some such) from using an all female squad, so guess they didn’t want it to be too easy to get heh.

      • Naum says:

        Yeah, I’m sure they designed the customisation system around the associated achievements. Don’t wanna let that game get in the way of actually achieving things, do you? ;)

        (Actually, I wouldn’t be all that surprised if someone went there.)

    • Reefpirate says:

      Just hire a bunch of rookies and select the ones you want. With enough rookies you should get all the girls and boys you want.

  24. valouris says:

    Oh my god I made exactly the same Guile!!

  25. Jeremy says:

    So, when I played through the tutorial, I basically followed the instructions exactly as given to me by the tutorial, and 3 of my people died. Are these inevitable deaths, or can you avoid them?

    • Rivosyke says:

      In the tutorial first mission, those 3 are supposed to die.

    • JuJuCam says:

      Pretty sure they’re scripted, best way to avoid them is to not do the tutorial as far as I can see. It’s a rubbish tutorial anyway :/

  26. realmenhuntinpacks says:

    Huh, never realised Kieron was Minister Drill Cock! CTCL repreSENT.

  27. cspkg says:

    I want to play this. It’s sitting on my hard drive, taunting me. But I simply cannot spare the time. Dammit, life!

  28. WCG says:

    Don’t you think it’s crazy that you can’t even choose your soldier’s specialty? This game has been fun enough, but they’ve removed a lot of the RPG elements that made the original X-COM so great. I mean, what do I care what my soldiers LOOK like?

    The smaller maps, the really small squads, the fact that the ENTIRE EARTH can only afford to send four guys (whom I could easily outfit myself at the local gun show) one place at a time,… this is purely a strategy game, nearly as artificial as chess. And the camera controls are terrible!

    I’m still having fun with it, but I can’t imagine why all these reviewers raved about it so much. It’s not even in the same league with the original game. Still, as I say, it’s worth playing.

    • Joshua Northey says:

      ??? This is a bizarre criticism and you sound like someone who just solely wants to criticize the game.

      “This game has been fun enough, but they’ve removed a lot of the RPG elements that made the original X-COM so great. I mean, what do I care what my soldiers LOOK like?”

      Umm the last game had no rpg elements at all!?!?!?

      “The smaller maps, the really small squads, the fact that the ENTIRE EARTH can only afford to send four guys (whom I could easily outfit myself at the local gun show) one place at a time,… this is purely a strategy game, nearly as artificial as chess. And the camera controls are terrible!”

      The camera controls are terrible, though once you actually learn them they are serviceable. As for your criticisms of the style of the game? Everything you mention could be said of the previous game, and it is all due to the fact this is a turn based tactical squad game, not a grand strategy wargame.

      Wait for Paradox Entertainment’s “UFO game if you want that.

      The reviewers like it because it is one of the better games out this year. Case closed.

      I’m still having fun with it, but I can’t imagine why all these reviewers raved about it so much. It’s not even in the same league with the original game. Still, as I say, it’s worth playing.

  29. dmurga says:

    Sorry to bother, but in Argentina we actually don´t really eat “flame-grilled steak”, it would actually be more accurate to say it is ember-grilled steak.
    As for the diary, i´m loving it. Already enjoyed the FTL one, i´m sure this is going to be as entertaining.