XCOM2 – Steamrollin’

I’ve finished the Blacksite missions and the Codex brain missions, currently researching the final 2 steps.  These missions are designed to be done with regular weapons – maybe mags, if you play them when they show up.  I waited.  I tried to make it a bit harder with captains and sergeants, but that wasn’t enough to offset a full upgraded sniper rifle, with 4 extra ammo, 4 free reloads, bluescreen ammo and 20% chance to hit.  The sniper kills everything in 1 hit.  Killzone (overwatch shot on anything that moves) + 7 ammo + squadsight = clear a map.

I managed to take out the Warlock as well.  The first floor was oddly linear and my Ranger never broke stealth.  The 2nd floor, I think things just ended up perfect.

Two advent soldiers down in a turn.  I know where the trigger line is with the chosen (2 tiles past half), so I set up the team for an ambush.  He had the most hit points of all the Chosen but still went down in a single round thanks to a chain shot sniper.  That gave the rest of the team free shots on the sarcophagus.  End of round had a Codex and Advent soldier show up.  A serial sniper (keep shooting after kills) took care of those 2 and the rest of the team took down the sarcophagus.  Warlock came back at 40% health, went down in 1 melee strike.

I think now I’m just going to assume the game is complete and go through the motions.  Even with really bad RNG, the damage taken is maybe 3-4 days of recovery.  They are tired for longer.    The power scales have tipped a tad too much in my favor – and I think the root cause is amazing luck on breakthroughs.  I started off early with extra weapon damage, then extra mods.  I do understand that RNG has benefits and drawbacks, but I think there’s a missed opportunity here for some added failure that is not time based.

A few items that could have worked better:

  • a separate tired system, with a method to accelerate returns.  Right now, it’s  just a number you have to wait out.  The templar base should address this.
  • a more pronounced negative trait system that goes beyond panic.  Lower aim%, lower mobility, failed reload, missed grenades… that sort of stuff.
  • Breakthroughs that are weighted against previous breakthroughs and have a cost other than time
  • A reason to use a specialist beyond healing
  • More mobility for enemy units so that they can close the gap, or pull you out of cover
  • A way for a soldier to “tank up” and draw fire.  The AI uses proximity to determine threat
  • Better use of enemy threats.  Every month they choose 3 to look at, and you can counter 1 through a guerrilla mission.  I never found them to be threatening.
  • More use of the Lost.  They are certainly a challenge at low gear levels.  Sending 3-4 swarms to a high ranked mission is a great twist.  I had it happen a couple times… very entertaining

I think the next update on XCOM2 will be when I clear the final mission.

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