X-Com List of Tips

OK so here is another thread (kind of like i’m trying to do for dishonored) with a list of tips. I’ll start below with an initial list of tips, or questions that are asked a lot…and over time i’ll edit this same post with additional information. This will have spoilers to an extent.

1. If your playing the game for the first time, then play the tutorial. However, I recommend that you make it a learning run. I recommend that you play the tutorial until you understand the game well, and then start over. The tutorial can be very intrusive. Spoiler – It restricts access to most of the areas that you can start in. It forces some of your characters to die in the beginning, and it restricts what options your able to take for a partial portion of the game. I recommend doing one playthrough with the tutorial until it’s over, then starting a new fresh game with the tutorial disabled. It can be disabled by following these instructions: http://gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/87207/can-i-skip-the-tutorial

2. A new patch was just released that fixes quite a few bugs. Make sure you get it.

3. Always continue leveling up new squad mates as you play. Mix and match them with stronger units, as it rounds out more of your characters.

4. If you want a real thrilling experience, never reload. When i’m in the mood I create a no reload rule. I play the game and if someone dies, mission fails, anything I don’t reload. Not recommended for first play through or if your not willing to lose some men. Also very hard to do on harder difficulty settings.

5. Always try to capture enemies when your able. Also…until you are extremely skilled in combat and know everything about the mechanics and have full control over combat, then always give your arc throwers to your lower ranked characters. You run a very high risk when getting near enemies within stun range. Better to have a lower rank die, than a higher rank. BUT when you become very experienced in combat, especially when you earn an extra slot with support characters, then I generally carry health pack (X3) and the arc thrower with my support character. He does very good, and rarely takes damage because he has maxed out armor. Again…make sure you know the game very well before trying to equip a higher level character with an arc thrower. It takes one wrong move (or a failed stun) for them to end up bloody on the ground.

6. Always balance out your party. I normally have 1 sniper, 1 assault, 1 heavy, and 1 support. Then I add additional characters (leveling, additional squad mates, shiv, and other random stuff).

7.Be wary when stunning. Always have a backup character available to fire “before” going in for a stun. In the off chance that the stun fails, your stunner will generally be left out in the open. So it’s best to always have a backup shooter somewhere to take the enemy out in a situation where the stun doesn’t work. Then if your shooter misses, your screwed.

8. I picked up a few tips on the “civilian rescue” missions. I finally got that achievement for getting all excellence. The secret is…a good layout to start with (a great deal of luck pertaining to what enemies you face, their board placement, and where the civilians are). And….SPOILER – Ghost armor. I gave this to my “support” and he ran around the entire building grabbing civilians as he went. Another good tip (SPOILER) is to use the archangel armor to fly 1-2 characters on the roof when you know it’s somewhat safe, as several civilians are normally on the roof, and surrounding areas. Aliens (tend) to favor the roof last, so grabbing them early will help you get a better civilian count. Losing a few is fine, but just save as many as you can and cross your fingers. Note, killing all enemies ends the mission and any civilians left alive are automatically saved. 

9. I aborted a mission once, and my men where on mid-field. They were all instantly KIA (Killed in Action). I am “assuming” that you would need to remove them to the extraction point THEN return to HQ. But I have not personally tried this. So just be careful when aborting mid-mission. Especially if you have not saved the game that can be recovered.

10. I finally found a good source for the countries. The following threat lists out all of the countries that are used in game, and is set up to make them very easy to identify by site. I saw several questions in this forum pertaining to this, so I thought I would post it.
http://forums.2kgames.com/showthread.php?140326-XCOM-Nation-Recognition-Guide
I will edit this later and add a lot more as well.

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