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Xenonauts 2: Aircraft & Air Combat


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There are currently three types of missiles in the game: simple, allenum, and fusion. There are only 2 types of cannons: ordinary and accelerated. Apparently there should be additional laser and plasma. The MAG weapon, in my opinion, should be removed from the game. That is, another intermediate type of missile between Allenium and Fusion is missing.
I see it something like this:
Ordinary Cannons: Range 3
Ordinary missiles: Range 4
Ordinary Torpedoes: Range 6

Accelerated cannons: Range 3.5
Allenium Missiles: Range 4.5
Allenium Torpedoes: Range 6.5

Laser canons: Range 4
Improved Allenium Missiles: 5
Improved Allenium Torpedoes: 7
Plasma canons: Range 4.5
Fusion Missiles: Range 5.5
Fusion Torpedoes: Range 7.5

Lock time for missiles should be reduced to 1 second or less.

It is desirable to reduce the damage of all missiles and torpedoes by 2-3 times and increasing the capacity.

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17 minutes ago, Alienkiller said:

If you remove that, you have to remove the Accelerated Weapons

There is no point in making so many weapons. I haven't started making the accelerated type yet, and lasers are already available to me. I just researched the GAUS weapon and I already have access to an improvement for lasers. In the presence of improved lasers, Gauss is unnecessary. It will be needed only if the different types of aliens will have very different protection from thermal and kinetic weapons. In addition, there is no improvement in GAUS weapons for MARS, so I do not take this type into account for fighter weapons.

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There will be differences, they aren’t fully implemented yet in whatever. Or they are shut down for us Testers for several internal Reasons (CTD etc.) and come later.

Gauss is a must have and if the Devs wanna bring the full feelings to the X-Com Veterans then such a thinking comes from one which isn’t firm in the classic Predecessors.

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Exactly MrAlex. The Devs wanna be with all useable integrations from the direct Rivals and better Integrations (like the Modular-System for Soldiers, Planes as well as Groundvehicles) resurect the Orignal Games with the best Things from the direct and older Rivals:

a) UFO ET were the first try from Chaos Concept. It was good, but not good enough in some Points. In the Fighter Refit it´s like here but with your Idea with xx-Rockets per fighter.

b) The new XCOM-Series is from Ground-, Geoscape, Storyline as well as R & D very good. But with the Airbattle :mad:. That´s why XCOM 2 and his smaller DLC´s / XCOM 2 WotC haven´t anyone.

c) The latest Rival from Xenonauts 2 [Phoenix Point form the Orignal-Devs from X-Com EU / Apocalypse and evtl. Interceptor] have very good Ideas for Ground-, Geoscape, Storyline as well as R & D too. In the next big DLC 3 there will be Airbattle integrated. Maybe we can have an Idea of it for here.

d) Last but not least the Predecessor Xenonauts 1 with his Advantages and Weankesses. 

But back to Topic:

I remember the first Betas where we had much more Mudular-Systems for the Fighters.

And an simliar Shield / Armor-System like the MARS and Soldier-Armors have for the UFO´s as well as Fighters / Transports were making the Fighters / Transports more interessting too. That´s why I say, we need everything we have as well as get from R & D.

The cool thing would be that the Fighters will have mixed Guns later, because you can´t build enough Laser- / Advanced Laser Cannons / Plasma Cannons about to high costs etc. and can upgrade the Accelerated Guns to Gauss-Cannons therefore.

The best Thing in old X-Com (EU / TftD / Interceptor / Apocalypse) as well as in UFO ET were that you had differnt equiped Fighters [Vehicles in Apocalypse]. I do that too with my X-25 Fighters and all new ones. 2 have Sidewinders, 2 have torpedos. If that were possible with the Guns later (Laser- / Plasma- / Accelerated- / Gauss), Electronics were cool too.

An other cool upgrade above all Rivals and the Predecessor would be that we could Refit the older Fighters to a new Version, like X-25 to an similar Fighter-/Bomber of the next Generation.



Edited by Alienkiller
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First of all, we need reduced damage from missiles / torpedoes, + increasing their capacity, as in the original game. In order for the UFO not to fall all as one from the first shot at the beginning of the game. It also requires a reduction in targeting time and increased range and speed for missiles. As well as correcting evasion for small UFOs to make missiles relevant.

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  • 1 month later...
On 1/16/2021 at 9:01 PM, MrAlex said:

I also think it is worth removing the restrictions on ammunition slots. As it was in the original game (on screenshots). The player must decide for himself what he needs: Torpedoes, missiles or cannons. New types of aircraft will be better than previous ones (not that now, the phantom is almost useless because it can not carry torpedos). 

This is obviously a bad idea, there is a reason why even the lightest of mods have restrictions, f.e. Unexcom has gatling and revolver cannons, and light, heavy and super-heavy missiles. Heavy and light crafts (aka interceptors, fighters, and fighter-bombers) need to be differentiated, as much as advanced and basic combat crafts. I used Unexcom as an example is it's also set in Cold War, and does not modify the game too much.

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14 minutes ago, MrAlex said:

I don't play mod-broken versions, so I'm not interested in what mod makers do with the game.

Um, mods fix the game, it's quite garbage without them. FFS, you could manufacture plasma weapons in the second week. And even if you don't play the, the concensus is against being able to put any weapon in any slot. Realism and game balance both demant it. Planes are constructed with different weapons in mind. Fighter can't be fitted with nuclear bombs. 
If the developers do the modular craft design right, you could convert the craft in other configuration, so, hopefuly, Angel can replace both Condor and Foxtrot, though I hope for at least 3 configurations per craft.

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21 minutes ago, wolfpriest95 said:

Um, mods fix the game

The developers are fixing the game. Mods change it according to the vision of the mod makers. This can be useful if the developers have left the game unfinished. But if the development team is serious about developing a project, it does not need significant fixes.

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I agree with Wolfpriest95. Mods fixing and improving the Game, where the Devs have Limitations (esp. Money but many Laws too). Therefore you need Freelancers, the Community and Modders which can handle them.

The best Example are historical Games, older Games or games with to much Law-Limitations. Exampels there are many and the Devs work therefore with the Modders and Freelancers. 

The Devs here work too with Freelancers and give Modding-Usability after the Game is fully Ready for it.

The Developers from UFO ET had an other Thinking. They integrate B-Man in the Team, which has layed the Modding for UFO ET, which has his Maximum with the UNI-Mod incl. Missing Features, Implementations, Bugfixings etc etc etc.

That´s a Reasn why Xenonauts 1 have the XCE-Version / XCE2-Version which fixes and upgrades the old Xenonauts too until Xenonauts 2 is Ready.

You see, Modders and Freelancers are absolutely nessecary. Not all Companys allow Freelancers and Modders to fix the Game to the Maximum the Engine could get, but the Companys which allow that get many inputs to make the Ground-Versions and DLC´s / Add-Ons much better. It´s an Cicyle which makes such Games interessting for the Public, the Game or Games get much better (esp. if they are medium to long-Time projects) and gives postive Prestige for the Company.

The best example are the new Major-XCOM-Versions with the Long-War-Modifications and the old X-COM with the Open-XCOM-Version, which bring in missing Elements (which are in the Code, but coulnd´t get used from the Devs), Bugfixes and many more things.

I don´t play the new XCOM-Versions without Mods as well Hoi 4, the old X-Com-Row, UFO ET. That are only examples of many more Games which are either finished in Development for the one or other Reason or are still in Development as long time Projects but get big Law-Limitations. 

Edited by Alienkiller
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  • 3 weeks later...

I like the idea of the aircraft being upgradable so that the early craft can be upgraded and slowly phased out for the newer craft without hitting a wall where you are unable to be effective with the old fleet. 

While I do like the new aircraft system that allows for the craft to be custom fit for what you need I would like to see options for 2 craft in the late game that are task-oriented. A 3 or 4 cannon extremely fast fighter that can not carry missiles designed specifically to deal with alien fighter craft and a heavier and much slower craft loaded down with 4 Missile / Torpedo mounts (no cannons) specifically designed to help take down the battleships and other large craft in the late game.

You would not have to build any of these aircraft, they would be an optional variant you can build if you find the need, and your current fleet of the modular craft just isn't quite performing how you want.

While making it all generic and totally customizable is great for the early and mid-game, I think not having the option to make aircraft that is better at specific tasks by design in the late game takes away some of the strategy and fun of the air combat.

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Zendrak I too like the new System, which the Devs brought in. Because you don´t get limited in Equipment anymore. In Xenonauts 1 were fighters which could only carry Rockets / Torpedos or Cannons. The Cannon Figheter was in here too. That was heavyly discussed and in that case the Devs decided that you can Equip your Fighter how you want in 3 Equipment-Things:

1. An Fighter with only Cannons

2. An Fighter with only Rockets / Torpedos

3. An Fighter with Rockets / Torpedos and Cannon

And an new Slot came back (where the Generator is in now). It´s not fully active atm but will in Beta 19 / 20.


Edited by Alienkiller
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Regarding pilot progression: suggest to have 2-4 base attributes for pilots like:

- Reflexes (incrases chance of success during combat manuevers + increases aim during base defense and pilot recovery mmissions)

- Endurance (increases chance of not being killed or wounded when plae is taking damage + increases HP when fighting in base defense or pilot recovery missions)

- Concentration (decreases speed of fatigue during missions so they can stay active for longer)

EXP gains slightly with each combat mission and additional increase with every UFO shot down

Training rooms could also provide a very small EXP gain to pilots over time

As in Tactical Missions, suggest to display the profile of the pilot in the plane selecting the bottom center but with flight helmet on. This is where their attributes can also be lsited to see at a glance how good they are in the above categories as well as any penalty they might have gained in combat (wounded, disoriented, exhausted) - negative modifiers should furhter spice up the engagement as a veteran pilot might miss easy shots when exhausted for example or fail a simple doge manuever

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On 5/21/2020 at 1:17 AM, Chris said:

In X2 we're experimenting with a setup where there are fewer interceptor types, but a wider variety of equipment available to them. Your starting interceptor type can carry any kind of weapon and can either be configured as a light fighter (capable of performing an evasive roll) or a tougher and more heavily armoured fighter that cannot roll. That way, it's possible to set the starting fighter up in either of the "dogfighter" (Condor) or "missile mule" (Foxtrot) roles from X1 - and the player can switch between configurations in a matter of hours if the need arises. 

Sounds excellet: 3 types of planes are more then enough I agree if they have fundementally different roles and none of them really gets obsolete thatnks to modules that can be upgaded to keep them fighting

Importan would be to visualise the porgression of these planes as new modules are deplyoed on them. Eg: showing the fancy new guns on the plane model, changing its texture when more advanced armor is deployed, smacking some exhaust ports on its back when new reactor is in with higher-tech - this is to give evne the base fighter model a sense of progression when you look a it and not having to see the exact same model every time

The modules that I currently see are two weapon slots, armor and reactor. Suggest differences for each plane type to enphasize their role further:

1. Interceptor (base plane): 1 Engine; 2 weapon slots; 1 Armor/Shield; 1 Reactor

   Role: dogfight and intercept light cruisers

   Special: Roll (avoid shot)

2. Heay Interceptor: 1 Engine; 1 Weapon Slot; 2 Armor/Shield; 1 Reactor

   Role: target cruisers and soak up their damage but vulnerable to enemy fighters

   Special: Redirect power from engine to shield

3. Space Superiority Fighter: 2 Engines; 1 Weapon Slot; 1 Armor/Shield; 2 Reactors

The additional reactor would mostly needed for the second engine but there should be some extra power left over for weapon and/or shield that the other planes cannot afford such as mounting an energy weapon + shield instead of armor or kinetik weapon+shield

   Role: target small to medium fast moving high-tech targets (such as elite fighters)

   Special: Evade (get behind enemy no matter how agile it is); Afterburner

I there are alien strateic targets on the map (not just alien bases that can be invadedI I would alos introduce bombers with 1 Engines; 1 Weapon Slot; 1 Bomb Slot; 1 Armor/Shield; 1 Reactors

The conceot would work a explained in the thread: base interceptor will remain useful via upgrades and providing the most damage output or buck while heavy interceptor and SSF would be needed to engage larger cruisers and their escorts at the same time

There is also room within each craft to specialise on loadout: damage vs speed; long range vs short range weapons; armor vs shield latter providing more defense and recharging but takes away energy dffrom engine and weapon so one of these need to be low-tech except in case of SSF which can boost both shield and high tech engines and weapon at the same time

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  • 7 months later...

The Training and Experiance-System for the Pilots sounds very cool. Hope to see it in one of the next Versions with the new Features in the Fighting-Screen there.

What I have in Mind as an Idea to get older Planes active are Refit-Upgrades. Like to refit the X-25 "Angels" to X-55 Chassis as an Example. That knowleadge you can sell or give after Testing to your Founder Nations, that they can Upgrade their Fighters to the new Standard.

They are out of Order for that Refit for several Days, instead of Decommision them.


Edited by Alienkiller
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Old fighters cannot be written off if you realize in the game the opportunity to turn an old fighter into an unmanned kamikaze plane (a kamikaze plane that is loaded with explosives and goes to ram against large and slow aliens-UFOs). Let's assume that some VERY LARGE UFOs can ONLY be shot down by a kamikaze plane. Then the player will definitely need fighters of old models.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 5/21/2020 at 2:17 AM, Chris said:

Potential Future Implementation:
I haven't entirely given up on the idea of finding a better air combat system. On reflection, I think our last attempt at the turn-based air combat failed because it was trying to do a very similar thing as the X1 air combat system, but doing it worse. Coming up with something fundamentally different is more likely to be successful.

So, what are the aims for any new system?

  • Each battle is relatively fast to play through
  • The skill comes from playing percentages / weighing up the risks and rewards of different moves, rather than "twitch" skills like pressing a button with perfect timing
  • To keep things varied, battles shouldn't always play out the same way each time even if the same combatants are involved
  • Ideally, the system would allow pilot progression

While playing Xenonauts 1 - I have always only used "classic" (automatic) combat.

The reason is that aerial battles are too monotonous and the player rarely has losses. No critical hits.

The battle tactics are always the same. Which is not surprising: the battle conditions (environment) do not change at all. Also: there are no random factors in combat.

I would suggest adding the following to air combat:


- Night-Day. The accuracy of the rockets in the sun is lower.


- Wind speed.

          In windy weather, the accuracy of the guns is reduced.

          Missile range decreases in windy conditions.

          The speed of UFOs (not adapted for flight in the atmosphere) against the wind decreases.


- Clouds. Fog.

          Reduced the aiming range of the cannon inside the cloud.

          A UFO can hide in a cloud (become less visible).

          Reduced the accuracy of firing at any aircraft inside the cloud.

(In other words: clouds are like cover scattered across the map in a ground battle.)


- Critical hits, after which:

          aircraft speed will be reduced,

          a failure of the weapon system,

          instant death of an aircraft or pilot, loss of altitude and an emergency landing (for ground fighters) occurs,

          malfunctions of modular equipment.


Some battles must end in a tie (no ammo) or an additional swarm of planes is required to win.

Edited by Komandos
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  • 7 months later...

I really liked the combat system from X1. It worked, was efficient and interesting.


If anything though, I'd like to see MORE aircraft unlocked, not less. :p

But having modular aircraft is a great idea. One of the things I hated in the original was how the Foxtrot had two missiles. And that's it. Without a gun, if your missiles missed, you were useless. Being able to switch missiles for guns, or at least expand the missile racks would be nice.

That was something I loved about X-Com Apocalypse, was how you have equipment slots for your vehicles. So you could choose different weapons, as well as extra items (like shields, engine boosters, scanners, etc). Each vehicle had weapon slots based on the vehicle, and a certain amount of space for equipment. Having that kind of option for X2 would be amazing. It would drastically increase the viability of earlier interceptors as we'd be able to simply enhance them to be able to keep up for a while with new UFOs.

So you could have an interceptor with say a light and heavy mount. The light mount could have a gun or light missile, while the heavy mount could also use a torpedo (or even larger guns).


And I really like the idea of pilot progression. It makes sense. If your pilot has survived multiple encounters, they're going to be a lot better at fighting the enemy. So having a level up system for planes (getting accuracy and evasion bonuses per level) would make sense.


Another thing, I would love to see the final aircraft be a hybrid. So you'd work your way up with different and better models of interceptors, as well as a couple of different dropships, like in the original. But the final aircraft you unlock should be a fighter-transport. Your ultimate ship, with all the tech you've collected, being the best interceptor that you can make (with the most health and guns and equipment space) that can ALSO carry a squad into battle. This would allow you to shoot down a UFO and immediately assault it at the crash site.

Now, there could be a limitation on that. Say the original dropship carried 8 troops, you research a new one that carries 10 and another that carries 10 but has a gimmick (like the drop pods in X1) and the final one is a powerful attack ship but is back down to carrying 8 troops (so you've got a couple less guys, but your response to a crash is immediate). It could also be a bit slower than the best pure interceptor you research (because it's got more weapons and space for soldiers). But overall it would make a lot of sense for that to be the best ship you can make.

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I think you play an much older Version. In V.22 / V.23 has much done with the Interceptors, esp. the Modular Parts. More incl. Adjustments comes with the next Versions. After that are playable for normal Gamers (which can play the much older Versions) you will see the difference.


With the Pilots I give you right. That the Beta-Testers mentioned too.


Maybe such an Dropship is in already in Xenonauts 2. The last Dropship get done with the latest testable Version (V.23). Your Idea sounds like in old X-Com (EU / TftD) and UFO ET-Series (UFO 1 ET Standard / Gold and UFO 2 ET), where such an Dropship is in already at latest.

Edited by Alienkiller
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  • 3 weeks later...
On 5/21/2020 at 2:17 AM, Chris said:

We're currently using the air combat model from the first Xenonauts in Xenonauts 2.

Is it possible to force the player to independently choose the combat formation of aircraft in a group? (Before the fight). The tactics of air combat are largely limited by the fact that the player's planes always attack in the same order of battle, and there is no longer enough time, speed to change the order of battle to another.

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Komandos, yes it is already integrated in the Game for Beta-Testing. You can choose an Attack-Strategy before the Aircombat beginns.

Testing with it works good, which means it will be an Main-Integral of the Game in the Air-Combat. Like all Prototypes (new Features) it need in the Beta-Versions before public Early Access some Adjustmenst here and there.

Edited by Alienkiller
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