XCOM 2 Mod Removes Pauses Between Combat Actions

I’ve been playing XCOM 2 and not having a great time so far. One of the reasons why is the constant delays in the tactical layer, which leave the camera to linger over a whole lotta nothing in between different actions. Thankfully, there’s now a mod for it, appropriately named ‘Stop Wasting My Time’.

I had initially assumed that these stutters and pauses were the result of my CPU struggling to keep up, though I suppose this means that the long delay between a Sectoid casting the ability and the targeted corpse reanimating was deliberate. The mod removes that, among the following combat changes:

  • Removed 1-3 sec pause after shooting, throwing grenades, abilities, etc.
  • Removed 1 sec pause after getting a kill
  • Removed 2.75 sec pause after going into cover
  • Reduced pauses from reanimating corpses and unburrowing chryssalids by 80%
  • Removed unskippable Bradford voiceovers:
  • 1, 3, and 6 turns remaining warnings
  • Civilians dying warning
  • Increased unit movement speed by ~10% (Lowered by popular demand – can be reduced back to normal under Options –> Gameplay –> Unit Movement Speed)
  • Removed slowdown of non-attacked enemies during overwatch slow-mo

It also makes the Avenger travel faster on the global map. If it could also address the glitches, introduce some effort to explain how enemies function, and revise the cover system so it makes logical sense, then I’d be in heaven.

You can download the mod through the Steam Workshop, where there’s also a short list of the pauses it can’t remove.

Thanks, PC Gamer.

For more on XCOM 2, visit our XCOM 2 guide hub.

70 Comments

  1. Sandepande says:

    How does the cover system not make sense?

    • subedii says:

      Was about to ask the same thing. It’s largely binary. Heck, you can even have it spell out the raw numbers for you if you want.

      I’m not even too sure what he means by explaining how the enemies function. You mean abilities? Raoming? Scamper mechanic? I mean a lot of this is stuff carried over from XCOM 1.

      • Metr13 says:

        So, does it mean that I get no tutorial and am just expected to know all that stuff if I didn’t play the previous games?

      • Sakaki says:

        The fact that it’s based entirely on angle, tile height and the specific piece of cover your guy happens to be touching, rather than an actual line of sight check.

        An example being when you are being shot at from above. A tree provides the same cover as a large rock despite the tree completely obscuring you while you’re basically standing in the open behind the rock from your attackers point of view.

        Or another example would be, there’s a guy behind a lamppost on the street. He’s basically just standing there completely exposed but the game says he has full cover. You take a diagonal step forward to a flanking position…the enemy is now completely exposed, despite now being completely hidden from your guys actual line of sight by the corner of a building. “No worries, I’ll just shoot through that”

        • SuicideKing says:

          Some lamp posts are half cover only, though (just the base).

        • Kitsunin says:

          Line-of-sight is confusing as heck (thankfully, there’s actually an indicator before you move now) but cover is as simple as it could possibly be.

          Is the shooter within the 180 degree field spreading from either end of the cover forward? If so, the cover is 100% effective. If not, the cover is 0% effective.

          • ooshp says:

            Not so in XCOM 2 – there’s now the “good angle” bonus as you get towards a flanking angle.

    • DrollRemark says:

      The one thing I will say against the cover system is that I dislike it when a piece of half cover stands next to full cover, as it feels like my soldier should get the advantage of that full cover, but instead they don’t.

      This article did make me do a double take on who wrote it though. I thought “these don’t sound like complaints Alec or Adam would have!”

    • Procrastination Giant says:

      While i think that the cover system “makes sense” and don’t fully understand the complaint either i’d say that a point could be made for it being a bit more unintuitive than the basic cover system in the first one, since this one seems to have aiming angles enabled by default and doesn’t mention it anywhere.

      So instead of the binary half cover, full cover and flank system of vanilla xcom 1 you have a somewhat more dynamic hit and crit chance depending on your angle towards the flank.

    • Seboss says:

      I think the cover system is nowhere as bad as line of sight resolution. I can *never* tell if if enemies have line of sight on my units or not (and vice versa). And don’t get me started on the inability to aim anywhere, or the fact that stray shots cannot hit anybody but the intended target. I can’t wrap my head around such a design decision. And the alien “pods” that get a free move on discovery? Ugh.

      I was not a big fan of the 2012 reboot and bought into the hype (again) for XCOM 2, even though the fundamental design of the tactical game have not evolved that much.
      I fail to see where all the praise comes from, especially for UFO veterans. I had a much better time with Xenonauts despite all its fault. I look forward to Xenonauts 2, even though the switch to 3D and Unity has got me worried.

      • Procrastination Giant says:

        When it comes to your line of sight problem: A little LoS icon pops up under the nameplate of enemies (or next to it, can’t remember the exact position right now) when the movement cursor is over a field where your unit has line of the sight on the enemy or vice-versa. It’s a bit clunky and barely usable if the units are far apart, but it’s certainly better than the complete lack of such a feature in the first one.

        • Seboss says:

          Interesting. Well, thanks, I totally overlooked that. I don’t know if it’s a sign of me getting old or something, but I find the game does a poor job at explaining anything.

          I’m a few months into my first game on Veteran difficulty, and it became obvious I need to restart now that I have some knowledge of techs, buildings, skills etc.

        • arkhanist says:

          To see the little line-of-sight crosshair on distant targets, it’s a lot easier if you zoom out. It’s default on the middle-mouse click – so I find myself quite often holding that down while I move the move box around checking target destinations to see which aliens they’ll have LoS to. It also works in reverse – if you don’t have LoS to them, they can’t see you there either, so it can be handy if you want to move your forward guys back a bit and sucker them into moving into an overwatch trap where you have a high cover advantage.

          • ooshp says:

            Do yourself a favour and get the free camera rotation mod. You can zoom out all the way and the camera will stay there until you select the next unit. Full zoom out + mousewheel up to the highest altitude and you can actually see your LOS indicators for your snipers.

      • aleander says:

        Xenonauts is a very different game, to the point where comparing both is only marginally useful — it might help someone pick, sure, but it’s a matter of taste. And it’s not just the visual aspect (both in style and production values), but also a very different approach to game rules. Just the “2 actions” vs “action points” decision is something that could start a war, and the “rule-changing” abilities are also something that lends to a very different play style.

        One thing I do believe is valid, though, is that XCOM’s UI isn’t really the greatest — it’s pretty, I love looking at it, but for a fairly strict game it makes me guess (or depend on my not-so-great perception) far too often. I still love it, though.

      • Askis says:

        While stray shots may not be able to directly hit and damage another target, they don’t just vanish either, which can cause some surprising things to happen occasionally.
        A missed shot might destroy the cover of another enemy, or it might take out the floor and drop someone to their death, enemy or friendly.

      • BlueRaja says:

        In XCOM 2, there is a sight-resolution indicator. If you hover over a square, you can tell which enemies you’ll be able to attack (and who will be able to attack you) from that square by looking at their health-bars. There will be crosshair next to the ones you can attack.

    • BlueRaja says:

      I had a hard time understanding the cover system when I first started playing, it’s actually fairly complex. I didn’t fully understand it until I found this image

      • SuicideKing says:

        Interesting, all this is something that I found fairly intuitive.

  2. Setroc says:

    This mod is great, I’ve been using it along with some other convenience mods:

    Free camera rotation (can make it easier to see things at some angles)
    Display Hit Chance (shows you your overwatch chance to hits and other things)
    Evac all (lets you evac everyone in the extraction zone at once, which saves a little time and also looks cooler)

  3. Philopoemen says:

    Just finished Veteran playthrough, and as well as completely missing some things (what are Spider, EXO suits and Psi Operatives? I know what they are but Commander ignored them entirely). Took me around 40 hours, tho I dilly-dallied about in the final months.

    Just started a Commander run through with this mod and others, and I’m flying through the turns. A lot more of my guys dying, but they’re dying quicker so its okay…

    The mechanic I don’t understand is related to wounds. One dude takes 10 damage, he’s Lightly Wounded; next dude takes 3 damage, he’s apparently at death’s door.

    • Slazer says:

      There is a logic that higher damage gives you a higher chance to be lightly/gravely wounded.

      I think I actually saw those numbers in a mod that lowers the probability of gravely wounds

    • BlueRaja says:

      It’s supposed to be random, but it’s basically broken because it’s too random.

      See the description in this mod, which also happens to fix the issue.

      • polecat says:

        Seems unfair that you don’t get any benefit from patching people up on the battlefield. One of the reasons I am tending towards combat hackers, along with their ability to avoid the dreaded Random Number Generator…

  4. Frank V. says:

    Why can a modder fix this stuff but 2k/Firaxis can’t??

    • JFS says:

      And why didn’t I read about this and all the other bugs, glitches, quirks and especially performance issues in all the glowing reviews?

      • Asurmen says:

        Because they didn’t encounter them/see them as a problem?

        • HeavyStorm says:

          So, they were asleep? The game is filled with this annoying stuff. I can accept that it doesn’t make a bad game, but should be mentioned.

          • Asurmen says:

            How can they mention something they may never encounter, in the case of bugs?

    • Comco says:

      Dude. Give them a break. Honestly – the game has only been out for 11 days! It’s easy for a modder to bang out a quick bit of code. I’m sure Firaxis are looking at it, along with a whole bunch of other fixes, and will need to test them together as an aggregate before pushing it out to everyone.

      Your modder can get away with ‘no guarantees, guys’. The bar is a little higher for a developer.

      • ooshp says:

        Not to mention the fact that spending 1000’s of hours making sure your entire game’s code is mod-friendly means you just lost 1000’s of hours of doing other things, e.g. polishing the UI.

  5. Rizlar says:

    Was hoping for a ‘shut the hell up Bradford’ mod. This will do!

  6. daphne says:

    Welcome to 2016, where a slight pause is apparently enough to ruin one’s enjoyment.

    Eh… you should probably take a break from games…

    • JFS says:

      Welcome to 2016, where buggyness is a feature and “whatevs, mods can fix it” excuses everything.

      • theblazeuk says:

        Welcome to PC gaming. For every smooth release there’s a buggy piece of gold to be unearthed through tweaks

        • Frodo Douchebaggins says:

          When was the last smooth release in PC gaming? I think it might predate my birth.

    • Cederic says:

      I haven’t played the game, but it does look to remove a large number of pauses that would occur quite frequently.

      People don’t passively watch computer games. They play them. Anything that derails the interaction reduces the experience.

      The game developers clearly felt that the pauses added useful feedback, assured a certain pacing to the game and overall added to the experience.
      The mod authors clearly disagree.

      Me, I’ll wait until I play the game before I make a choice, but it’s lovely that the choice exists. You disagree?

    • Geebs says:

      The thing is, multiple short pauses can be much more irritating than one longer one. Psychological models of waiting say that it becomes more upsetting to people the more you draw somebody’s attention to it and the less distraction you provide. Hitches in animation can also interrupt immersion, which is aggravating.

      For a non-game example of this, try working at a place that uses a Citrix system (all Office apps run off a central server and your computer is a thin client). Every single action you perform in, say, Word gets an additional variable delay of about 0.1 to 0.5 seconds. Individually these delays are tiny; in practise, it’s absolutely maddening and utterly destroys the user’s concentration and creativity.

    • HeavyStorm says:

      What a stupid opinion.

  7. Sleepery says:

    I’m still waiting for a mod that replaces whoever the hell this Central guy is with the real Bradford from XCom 1. It’s like his voice broke since the last game.

    • polecat says:

      He’s meant to sound really different in the sequel because he’s spent the last 20 years on the run, boozing, growing stubble etc. It was either different actor or put the original one through so much artificial rasping they would have got nodules. He does yap on a bit too much, but that’s not the actor’s fault.

      • DrollRemark says:

        I do like that he’s supposed to be about 20 years older, but actually looks about 5.

        • JFS says:

          Did anybody notice there’s a lot of XCOM soldiers who did crazy stuff like blowing up alien facilities or going to jail “when the invasion began”, aka when they were 7?

        • polecat says:

          He’s crazy young in the first one though! I want to see further decline in XCOM 3. He can sit by the big globe in an armchair resting a big glass of neat gin on his paunch and watching TV. He would still warn you if you were running out of turns or needed some more recruits, but in a really half hearted way and he’d trail off before finishing.

          • Horg says:

            ”What….is it, doctor?”
            ”Whiskey, sir, and i’m not the doctor. I’m your aide, remember? I bring you your drinks.”
            ”……I liked the old Vahlen better. You talk too much.”
            ”It’s private Friendly, sir.”
            ”Hey Vahlen, I left a Sectoid corpse in your bunk from the last op, still fresh. We all know how much you like getting your hands dirty! Hehehe….just like the old days…..”
            ”……Thank you, sir…..(sigh)”

    • AshEnke says:

      You know what, I didn’t even understand it was Bradford until I read your comment !
      I thought Bradford was the guy we rescued in the tutorial and wondered why we never heard or saw him…

  8. El_MUERkO says:

    What I’d really like is for all the camera switching and close-up stuff not to happen; I’d still like all the animations and slow-mo stuff to happen when aliens trigger Overwatch or big Crits to happen BUT for the camera to stay up in the sky and under my control.

    • Premium User Badge

      Andy_Panthro says:

      Especially since the close-up camera sometimes makes things look terrible, with walls getting in the way and so on.

      One time for a hack, something got in the way of the camera and I couldn’t even see the hacking screen. Just had to hit enter a couple of times and hope the game hadn’t crashed (it was all okay in the end).

    • polecat says:

      Isn’t there a ‘show action cam’ toggle in one of the options menus (gameplay maybe)?

      • Horg says:

        There is, but it doesn’t disable all the close ups, and you lose control of the camera at certain times such as the enemy turn. That can be really frustrating when you have a pod wandering off into the fog but the camera is glued to your squad.

  9. CutieKnucklePie says:

    Also on the Nexus, for those of us who prefer it to Steam.
    link to nexusmods.com?

    • aleander says:

      There’s no nude mod yet. That’s so un-Nexus-like.

      • CutieKnucklePie says:

        Glad Steam Workshop is keeping you pure and clean. You can also easily turn off that kind of content on any Nexus site if you don’t want to see it.

  10. Premium User Badge

    Andy_Panthro says:

    I feel like there should be a pathfinding mod, since with the move system there’s no apparent way to tell your soldiers to avoid wandering through acid or fire, or to walk around a building rather than crashing through a window.

    • Raazer says:

      Ctrl + Right click

      • Comco says:

        Ok. I’m intrigued. Tell me more…

        • ooshp says:

          I only discovered this by looking at the keybindings. But yes, you can ctrl-right click to set waypoints.

          • Premium User Badge

            Andy_Panthro says:

            Many thanks! I played through the tutorial bits of both XCOM:EU and XCOM2, and these sorts of things aren’t mentioned as far as I can remember. Didn’t occur to me to look through the keybindings!

  11. Dread Quixadhal says:

    I wish there were option settings to toggle ALL of these.

    Removing the pauses is almost always a good thing. But, I don’t want to remove voiceovers. I don’t want to remove turn warnings. I don’t want to remove notifications of civilians dying. I don’t want to mess with unit speed.

    In short, I want to remove the pauses which contribute nothing to the gameplay, and leave everything else alone.

    • empty_other says:

      Turn 1, 1 civilian killed: “This is a slaughter, Commander, we are losing civilians left and right!”

      Turn 2, another civ killed on the other side of the map. “If you don’t do anything soon, Commander, there will be nobody left to save!”

      Turn 3, my team is suddenly down to 2 men, one which is under mind-control: “We can’t afford any more civilian casua… SHUT UP Central, civilians are no longer a priority!”

      It would only be half as annoying if we didnt have to wait for him to finish before we can do our turn. I’m agreeing that toggles is a good thing, but i dont see how you would want to be warned every time a civilian dies. Just assume that at least one dies every turn. :)

    • MercurialJack says:

      You could edit the .ini file/s to leave in the pauses or voiceovers that you like/want. I agree, it’s less easy than having simple menu toggles, but the option is still there if you really want to go find it.

  12. Dominare says:

    90% of the complaints in these comments are directly solved by actually reading the loading screen tips.

    Complete list .

    • Dominare says:

      Whoops! The link is the full stop after ‘complete list’ in my previous post. I guess I subconsciously couldn’t bring myself to make it -too- easy since this is XCOM after all.

      • polecat says:

        I actually like that they don’t reveal all the detail of the mechanics in-game. It’s so complicated now it would be like reading the Settlers of Catan manual in one sitting. I really like doing one play through with saves on veteran (normal) then starting ironmans on the next one up interspersed with looking at t’interweb for info. And there’s a great community around this – several complete tech trees available already, I like this one

      • ooshp says:

        Hmmm… what % chance is it that the full-stop link will brick my PC?

        Is there a slim chance of winning a prize?

    • Horg says:

      Finally we have a game that loads so slowly that you have time to read those things, but your soldiers keep leaning in on the text. How do we explain to the world that the war was lost thanks to private Doofus blocking key tactical intel from the commander by stretching his legs?

    • SuicideKing says:

      Lol that’s true. The only thing I’m not exactly sure how to use is the manual extract button (when it’s simply blue and not green) – can I shift the extract zone in a mission, or will that count as a retreat?