First XCOM 2 DLC Inbound, But No Perfomance Fix Yet

Suicide Squad, innit?

Well, in fairness, they’ve still got a week to squeak out a much-needed fix for the otherwise great XCOM 2 [official site]’s assorted technical issues before the Anarchy’s Children DLC arrives next week. They might yet do right by us. Leaves a bit of a bad taste in the mouth to even be talking about flogging extra content before the base game’s fully ship-shape, though – especially as said extra content makes me twist my lips into a sort of bemused pout. I really dig XCOM 2’s current and generous character customisation options, which manage to be playful without capsizing into arbitrary weirdness. I’m not sure the same can be said about the Anarchy’s Children pack of cosmetic add-ons.

Due March 17 and selling either for $4.99/£3.99 on its own or as part of the $19.99/£15.99 Reinforcement Pack season pass thinger, Anarchy’s Children compromises around 100 new customisation options – “new hair styles, face paints, armor, lower face props, decals, helmets, masks and more”. As you can see, it’s departed entirely from the concept of ‘co-ordinated military resistance’ and gone Full Saint’s Row. I’m not at all averse to more options, or even to wilder ones, but I just feel like a lighter touch was needed. This is maybe a bit too DeviantArt.

Or maybe I’m just bitter that mine is one of the many PCs that XCOM 2 brings to its knees (and also that I get the notorious last-level lightshow) and I don’t like to see people who haven’t had problems being treated to new stuff before poor unfortunates such as I are seen to. Who knows?

Still a week to go, anyway: a day and date patch/DLC release would make a ton of sense, from a goodwill point of view. 2K do say that “Additionally, we’re preparing a patch that will include performance optimizations and gameplay bug fixes” but stop short, once again, of giving a date for it.

Anarchy’s Children is out in a week, anyway – a few more details here. Fingers crossed that they’re just showing off the most outlandish stuff they can for marketing’s sake, and that the reality will be getting to apply more restrained tweaks and variety to our beloved, doomed XCOMmers. I’m down with the mohawk, at the very least. I admit that the new stuff doesn’t look quite so garish in this other screenshot: I guess no-one’s going to be forced to make a squad of Harley Quinns:

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60 Comments

  1. Premium User Badge

    X_kot says:

    “Anarchy’s Children compromises around 100 new customisation options”

    I think you mean “comprises,” although there’s a certain emotional truth in the current phrasing.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      The cynical bit of me says the first option is the one to go for… ;)

  2. Premium User Badge

    Cross says:

    The official annoucement of the DLC pack (link to xcom.com) says the first major patch is coming out alongside the DLC. I question why they would stagger it out like this with no console Cert to worry about, but there it is.

  3. Patches the Hyena says:

    Not sure if the Firaxis post was updated after this piece was written, but it does say

    “Additionally, we’re preparing a patch that will include performance optimizations and gameplay bug fixes. We will have more info to share on this very soon.”

    So yeah, probably a simultaneous launch if they have any sense.

    • Goldeneye says:

      Having read the blog the moment it came out, the mention about the performance and bug fixes were already there from the start.

  4. ElementalAlchemist says:

    I have to say that lot looks pretty terrible. Your money would be better spent dropping some pennies in Capnbubs’ Patreon, his mod is great – link to nexusmods.com – and it’s a shame it seems to have stalled (I gather he had to return to paying the bills). Firaxis should just hire him to do some equipment DLC.

  5. AlexStoic says:

    Ahhh… hmm. Grunge/punk is the polar opposite of the direction I personally want from a game like XCOM. Kind of hard to take the resistance forces seriously when they look like they’re ready for a German bondage-themed Halloween party. To each their own, I guess.

    • Shadow says:

      It is pretty terrible, unfortunately…

      And I’m disappointed this is part of the Reinforcement Pack, which I have purchased. I wish I’d be getting more sensible content than this. It’s way too jarring and over-the-top, and it boggles the mind how someone could’ve conceived this as a good addition to XCOM 2.

      • Mokinokaro says:

        It does clash heavily with the aesthetics of the rest of the game.

        Though I must bring up that I really wish your soldiers looked much more ragged early on, relying on cobbled-together armor and gear until you upgraded a few tiers.

    • mathead says:

      That’s 20$ worth of ringtones. Good job, FIREAXIS.

    • dylan s says:

      I like it. The initial premise of XCom2, that you would be a ragtag group of freedom fighters cobbled together from the remains of society, really appealed to me. But the vanilla Xcom units just look like soldiers with maybe a casual Friday haircut. This, to me, is heading in the right direction. I just wish we could dispense with the military armour and wear more thematic gear.

  6. TodaysTomServo says:

    In case you ever wanted X-Com HQ to look like the Gathering of the Juggalos

  7. Vacuity729 says:

    I think there’s a fair point to be made that the artists involved in making this stuff probably wouldn’t make any significant contribution to making a performance/glitch patch ship any earlier.
    I can still sympathise with people wondering why Firaxis is asking for more money when they’ve not really fulfilled their obligations for the money already taken, mind.

    • Punning Pundit says:

      It would also make sense for them to be testing the patch against a ton of customization options. If they drop a patch that fixes things for the base game, but breaks things when the DLC drops, they’d be in a bunch of trouble.

    • Joshua Northey says:

      This shit drives me absolutely nuts, but the reason this happens is because this is what people pay for. You release a DLC that is game mechanics and interface and AI updates and all the entitled teenagers throw a shit fit because they think that type of improvement of the game is “patching” and should thus always be free.

      Meanwhile very few games are improved by more dress up options, but more dress-up options are what are stupid peers will pay for.

    • Smoky_the_Bear says:

      That’s essentially it though, they are paying artists, you don’t suddenly ask them to big squash for a bit because that pay their expertise and you don’t pay them to sit around doing nothing either.

      • Smoky_the_Bear says:

        Jeez my phone butchered that completely and no edit function, oh well you get the idea.

  8. Horg says:

    Where the hell are the alien customisation options? Are Posh Mutons too much to ask?

    • Premium User Badge

      Nauallis says:

      Muton Centurion mod. Posh, and freaky as hell.

    • WladTapas says:

      Posh Muton… to be joined by Sporty Viper, Baby Sectoid, Ginger Codex, and Scary Berserker.

      You’re welcome to this mental image.

      • Tigg_Fedora says:

        Baby Sectoids were in the first XCOM. Watching the little grey bastards scamper into an overwatch is a moment of pure delight, providing the RNG gods are with you.

      • Premium User Badge

        Benratha says:

        Gives “Slam your body down and wind it all around” a whole new meaning…

  9. Premium User Badge

    Oakreef says:

    I’d say if Firaxis got all the people working on the DLC to stop and go to working on bugfixes and performance issues instead…it would increase the amount of time it would take for said fixes to finished dramatically. People hired as character artists are probably not expert programmers and shouldn’t be put to work on fixing code they didn’t write and having them sit on their hands until their teammates got done fixing bugs would be a waste of Firaxis’ money.

  10. Davie says:

    Shame so many people are still having the performance issues. I was as well, but they pretty much ceased entirely a couple weeks ago out of the blue. Game runs like a charm now.

    I like the idea of even more customization options–I kind of want to play the whole game feeling like a group of plucky rebels piecing advanced technology together from scrap, rather than the inevitable smooth-edged high-tech paramilitary group XCOM becomes after researching power armor. But I’m definitely hoping for some more subdued options–It’s like they overshot “punk” and bounced off “juggalo”, with their only points of reference being the Warriors and that one rave the art director went to in 1997.

    • Rizlar says:

      Yeah, hopefully and presumably there are a range of options, as it is with customisation in the base game. Apparently some people are into garish ridiculousness. My aesthetic sensibilities are more in line with your own.

      • Premium User Badge

        cpt_freakout says:

        There’s got to be something you like out of 100 items. Unless they really went overboard and everything looks like what’s in those screenshots… but hey, I’m sure you can combine some of those decals decently with a more serious style.

  11. barelyhomosapien says:

    Great now I want mutons with top hats monocles and handlebar moustaches, thanks!

  12. theirongiant says:

    *Quietly adds Firaxis to the list of companies who can go fuck themselves*

    • Premium User Badge

      Cross says:

      *Quietly add theirongiant to list of impressionable thickies.* Read the comments, man!

  13. Geewhizbatman says:

    It looks fun and funny but I suppose it depends on how you view the XCOM franchise. As a B-Movie horror/sci-fi plot and lots of frowny faced bro-heroes to follow around–being able to treat it more like Tank Girl than Die Hard 12: The Trouble With Tribbloids is a more tempting DLC than yet still more gruff face bandannas.

    However, I’ll have to wait until it comes out as a large, discounted bundle if I try it at all. I find Firaxis’ treatment of the performance issues as a minor niche problem they don’t need to hurry to address and certainly aren’t going to let something so minor as problems with their product get in the way of their revenue stream. I mean why shouldn’t they when even those with them are willing to put up with them just for their fix of alien killing–but still. I find it too icky personally to refund my refund just yet.

    • Geewhizbatman says:

      Oh and this is neat, “If you have already purchased the Reinforcement Pack, do not also purchase Anarchy’s Children on its own, as you will be charged for it.” Shouldn’t there be a better way to avoid that than just saying read the fine print harder cause otherwise we will still totally take your accidental money anyway?

      • JHVDH says:

        That’s more a problem with Steam’s interface really. It’s not really something Firaxis can control.

        • Jetsetlemming says:

          No, this can totally be handled with the Steam interface, I’ve seen a number of bundles or season passes where the individual DLC just shows as “You already own this” when you look at the page. No idea why they aren’t doing that here.

  14. Punning Pundit says:

    It’s weird: I built my wife into the game- complete with Hello Kitty armour- but the fauxhawk in the game looks much less like her actual fauxhawk than the Mohawk will. So I’m excited!

  15. Krull says:

    Wow, now I understand why is every vanilla character so incredibly ugly.. Well played developers, well played.. Sort of.

  16. mpk says:

    This announcement makes me really glad I didn’t opt for the season pass purchase – I’m quite happy for DLC like this to exist, but I’m not at all interested in buying it.

  17. Distec says:

    What they’re showing looks pretty terrible and out of character for XCOM.

    But meh. Optional DLC. Go Harley out as much as y’all want.

  18. subedii says:

    Odd. I mean I had performance issues Linux-side, but those went away with the first patch.

    Pretty much running minimum spec system here, but the game went from ‘horribly juddery even at minimum visuals’ to ‘comfortably playable at medium’.

  19. MrFinnishDude says:

    Man, wheres the “true” Guerrilla dlc? You know like “Viva la revolucion” “Venceremos!” and stuff. I want my Xcom to really feel like I’m playing a rebel movement.

  20. aircool says:

    Even though the game works ok on my PC, it really needs a few fixes, especially for those who are struggling.

    I’m all for more customisation though as the current options are quite limited. I’ve been having fun, but after the obvious stereotypes, such as the entire cast from a cheesy ‘nam warfilm, to some of the characters from the recent Mad Max movie, and of course Lemmy, there’s not many places to go.

  21. katscan says:

    It needs more than just a performance fix ! Bugs are everywhere. What about the camera issue if you attempt to hack at just the wrong angle? Basically you are left staring at a close up of a door, and have to blindly click randomly around the screen hoping to hit the cancel hack button.

    What about the fact that units stop animating if they drop from a height (such as blowing out the floor from under them) ?? That’s pretty bad.

  22. Tigg_Fedora says:

    To add to the more reasonable chorus, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to issue a patch first that fixes things then add DLC that buggers it all up again. The timing might be a bit galling for some with running (or not running at all) issues but it makes sense.

    I’m hoping the DLC has a few more sensible outfit options than just the collection of cartoon characters, Mad Max extras and misfits we’ve been given a preview of. Still, the extensive and growing number of mods will no doubt scratch that itch if the DLC doesn’t.

  23. katscan says:

    ?? I didn’t realize hitting ESC on the keyboard or right clicking fixes the animation issue.

    So after the character falls through the floor, completely stops animating, and action results just pop up out of no where, I can just hit Escape and it all goes back to normal? Lol

  24. Tease says:

    lol Game runs like crap for many.. so what. Pump out the Cosmetic DLC. Give the soldier new hats

  25. haldolium says:

    Pathetic.

  26. Goldeneye says:

    I’ve really no idea why people seem to expect the Anarchy’s Children DLC to feature gameplay, when the very description of it *months ago* already laid out what to expect:

    “ANARCHY’S CHILDREN is a rebellion themed DLC featuring more dramatic soldier customizations. (To be released in Spring 2016)”

    It’s like ordering a regular cheeseburger that says that it’ll only have bun, patty and cheese on it, and then complaining to the cashier that the burger didn’t include bacon.

    Also, the fact that they bundled the announcement of the performance and bugfixes along with the Anarchy’s Children announcement means that they’ll very likely release said fixes at around the same time.

    Finally, all the customizations fit the name, i.e. “Anarchy’s Children”, which does indeed bring up stuff like Mad Max in mind.

  27. PegasusOrgans says:

    I couldn’t disagree more with the article’s author, and most commentators here. You have seen 3% of the options and have decided to make a sweeping dismissal of the entire DLC. It saddens me that people who should be wiser and more patient make abrupt judgments without having the proper amount of information. Personally, I love what I’ve seen, and I await the rest with open arms. Hasn’t Firaxis earned your trust at this point?

    • mathead says:

      It’s allright, calm down. We’re just RPS readers and staff being RPS readers and staff.

    • larkintosh says:

      The glitch gremlin must been celebrating X-mas on the release day.
      Firaxis lost their trust when I watched their preview and the one who made the interview was silenced when he pointed on the character didn’t broke the glass in the window before taking the shot.
      what would be a good dlc is new maps and new design on the the standard weapons with at least two different types of guns for each class(Ranger has way too many rifles to pick) or finish the cut content…

  28. Poerts says:

    Damn, this is actually weirdly perfect for me. I’ve been playing the whole game pretending I was running a team of Shadowrunners anyways, so a pack of ridiculous futurey punk stuff is awesome.