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Free Xenonauts Updates, and Xenonauts-2!

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With such a large influx of new players experiencing Xenonauts for the first time, this post is here to explain the  free additional content players can download for Xenonauts 1 and to talk a little about our plans for Xenonauts-2 (for which there will be a Kickstarter very soon!)

The free content for Xenonauts 1 consists of the semi-official Xenonauts: Community Edition update and the various mods it enables - the best known being X-Division, which is a complete rework of the game that adds a LOT of additional complexity and content. A lot of experienced users recommend jumping straight into Community Edition rather than playing vanilla Xenonauts because of the usability improvements and extra mod content available for it.

Xenonauts: Community Edition ("X:CE")

So, what is X:CE? Shortly after we finished development on Xenonauts and released it, we made the source code of the game available to a group of professional coders within the community who wanted to continue to update and improve Xenonauts without changing the fundamental gameplay experience. Over the past few years they've made a lot of improvements to the base game with regards to usability and stability, and X:CE also includes the most popular community map pack and a community-made mod that includes additional "lore" research that appears throughout the game.

Given most players do not win their first Xenonauts campaign, I recommend people play vanilla Xenonauts for their first campaign but then switch to X:CE for all future campaigns. X:CE is widely regarded as a straightforward upgrade for vanilla Xenonauts, but I personally feel it's important for the player to play a bit of the vanilla game so they have a sense of where the official content stops and the community content begins. The community content is great and adds quite a bit more variation to the game, but it's not strictly canon within the Xenonauts world. Similarly, the vast majority of people enjoy the new maps but the occasional person has a problem with them so you may not want to throw them into the mix until your second playthrough!

A summary of the changes made in X:CE can be found here along with instructions of how to download it via Steam, whilst non-Steam users can download the files here.


There are lots of mods for Xenonauts, and there's several mods that are major overhauls of the game that add significant amounts of extra content. Currently the best-known conversion mod is probably X-Division (although there are others out there), which I guess could loosely be described as the Xenonauts equivalent of the Long War mod for XCOM.

You can read about it in the mod release thread here, but it involves a LOT more of everything. I wouldn't recommend this as a first playthrough given it's meant to be significantly harder than the normal game, but if standard vanilla Xenonauts starts to get a bit dull then X-Division adds in 900 new research projects, 22 new aircraft, 186 new weapons, 13 new sets of armour and 9 new vehicles. If that sounds like your sort of thing then head over and check it out!

Please note that X-Division requires Community Edition to be installed because of the extra mod support the community coders have added in over the years!


The last thing to mention is that Xenonauts-2 is on the way, and we're planning a Kickstarter for the game later this month and it should be hitting Early Access this year. Although we're proud of what we produced when we made Xenonauts, there are quite a few areas where we think we can improve on the game for the sequel - so if you enjoy Xenonauts 1, we hope you'll be willing to check out the sequel too!

If you want to hear about our Kickstarter when it launches or get a notification when Xenonauts-2 is released, the best way is to sign up for our mailing list here. A free public alpha demo of a single ground combat mission can also be downloaded via GOG Galaxy from the post here if you want to check out how our new 3D battlefields are shaping up! 


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