Firaxis have released a big ole patch for XCOM 2 [official site], aiming to improve everything from performance to balance. Even as one of the lucky folks who hasn’t had many problems with XCOM 2 (I mean, aside from when I had the final mission turn into a colourful glitch-o-rama), I’m glad to see some of these changes. The new ‘Zip Mode’, which trims a lot of the dramatic pauses and delays in combat, sounds great. If you are someone who had bigger problems… tell me, does this help?
This 400MB download is “the first major patch”, Firaxis say, and the patch notes make it look that way. Go on, have a look. You’ll find plenty of tweaks aimed at improving performance, a combination of technical fixes and settings changes like reducing the resolution of high-resolution shadows.
On the balance side, Firaxis are making the Mimic Beacon – a hugely powerful item – less powerful by increasing the price of buying ’em and by making it so, when deployed, the mimics can’t take cover and will always be hit when enemies shoot at them. The Wet Work combat tactic, which boosts XP earned from kills, no longer applies retroactively so veterans won’t get a big boost when you purchase the upgrade. Firaxis have reworked Graze hits too.
Aaand you’ll also find bug fixes and crash fixes and exploit fixes and loads of other stuff. But if you’re using mods, be aware of this:
“If you have mods enabled after installing the patch, launch it once, close the game, and launch it again. Players will only have to do this once. After the restart, the game will have initialized the patch to work with mods. While the majority of mods will operate in harmony with the patch, some mods may conflict with patch updates and will need to be updated to take advantage of the patch improvements.”
Our Alec has given me “free reign to say I was a dumbo for whining yesterday” but no, I agree – it was silly for Firaxis to talk excitedly about DLC before the game was fixed. So, if you were one of the folks with big XCOM 2 performance problems, how’s it looking after this patch?