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Testing at its finest .... and some suggestions

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Testing at its finest

I’ve been playing the game for a bit now, starting with V14 and now riding on the newest V19. This will be the first time that I’ve actually started to document things I’ve noticed that really should be changed. I’m sure some of this will have already been reported but … Hell, I’m running a beta version of the game right? Might as well act like it 

1. Careful I’m fragile! My biggest complaint so far would be the fact that at the start of the game (Even under easy) everything seems so easy to die. The units I deploy to the field are easy to kill but even more than this the fighter crafts I send out die in record fashion, I mean a Condor should be able to take out a light scout with no issues right? How about a normal Scout? Shouldn’t scouts be easy pickings? Sadly no…. I find that 2 Condors are needed just to take out a light scout and 3 for the normal scout. Perhaps these Condors are a little under powered? Once you get going and get a few fighter weapon upgrades then they start to get pretty easy, even with the larger UFOs. I’m thinking there is still a bit of balance work needed

2. Upgrade me! One feature that would add a TON of flavor to the game involves unit promotions, a feature that isn’t being used. Given the chance I believe most of us would rather pick what upgrades we would like when a unit is promoted. For example, my “Assault” class units are my front of the lines… “hit them with a baton and get out of there” units. I know I want them with the highest TUs and the highest HP … but sadly I can’t customize them for this role. Give us the option to choose how we want to mold our troops! LOL

3. Heavy and rolling with a pistol! What’s the point of the classes? What is the difference between a sniper and a riflemen? Do they get special perks? Does their aim improve when holding a sniper rifle vs. a machinegun? Do they need special training before they can use a machine gun or a sniper rifle? At this point it seems like you guys have an idea rolling around but nothing has hit the paper outside of the name of the class ….. I say get rid of the class name but make us go through trainings that give us bonuses for the particular role. For example, Joe Smoe goes through 6 days of sniper training and gains +1 to observation and marksmen while gaining the ability to use the sniper rifle …. Just a thought

4. My shells use teleportation! Yep! The ability to shot through the walls… or even more so… the floors can still be found on the map. I find that the teleports are the biggest offenders. I have 4 units surrounding a teleport and one on the floor above. An Alien doesn’t try to kill the guy on the second floor (same floor he is on) but rather shoots at the teleport and kills one of the guys down below….. hmmm that doesn’t seem right

5. Unit configurations are down at the moment! Hard to reproduce unless I’m not thinking about it but from time to time when I’m attempting to jump to the unit config from the geoscape the game crashes…. Or none of the buttons work.

6. Hunt the hunters! Maybe you designed it this way and I’m not complaining but it does cause a weird glitch. When the notification comes up for a terror site and I fly out to it…. Right before I reach it I get the chance of changing my target to the actual UFO that landed there. SWEET! I get to bag another UFO instead of doing the mission. Upon completion I get the “terror site” notification about a dozen times followed by “Countless lives saved” and then the terror site is gone. If you intend to allow us to attack the UFO instead of the actual terror site then I’d remove those extra mission prompts

7. Takin a break boss! The TU costs for most weapon actions are a bit high and many times cost more than the max TU the unit has. The Sniper Rifle is a popular one, without taking a single action on the start of a turn I cannot use the best aim… it costs 61TU and that’s more than the unit has. Or how about the “Auto fire”, 41TU to pump out 3 shells sounds great but considering I need to get in REAL close to actually hit something you might want to scale it back a bit.

8. Can you spare a dollar? Lets admit it, the game can be difficult at the start and with a whooping 700k in the bank your likely to go broke really quick. Perhaps giving us an alternative method to generate cash would be helpful…. Like selling those “Unlimited” rifles (another thing I vote for removing, in the real world you won’t get “unlimited” so why should you here). By giving us a set amount of stuff we have to be more careful how we use stuff. Man! I could just chuck that grenade in there but the grenade costs 100 …. May be I’ll just run in with a baton then. Selling stuff at the end of a mission kinda feels ….. well like “what if I want to keep it and use it on the next mission”

9. Who taught you how to shoot?!! There is something about the aim between a ballistic round and everything else that drives me nuts, my guys can’t hit the broad side of a barn when holding a standard rifle…. Give them a plasma or a laser and suddenly they are winners of a AAA completion. But … then again it could be me, without knowing exactly how much progress on aim those soldiers have made it’s difficult to say (goes back to #2 and 3)

10. Flashbang how I love you so, you make me feel safe when I run into a room. You make me feel safe but that’s all you do, as I reload from a previous saved game. You leave me wondering if 23TU was worth the throw, you leave me wondering if I should bring you at all. *poem over* so the flashbangs…. Not exactly helpful, I thought they were designed to get rid of the “reaction shot”, well if so then they ain’t working LOL

That’s about all I have for now outside of the missing text here and there. I’ll keep writing down what I’ve seen and report back from time to time

Later guys!


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1. You'll get better at air combat and it will seem easier. 1 Condor can take out a light scout, 2 Condors will take out a Scout.

2. The game follows the original in terms of soldier skill progression, and I think it makes more sense than choosable upgrades. Your soldiers get better at doing what they do. If they shoot a lot, their accuracy goes up, if they carry a lot, their strength goes up, etc.

3. There are no classes in this game. What you see as classes are just some pre-set loadout templates, that's it. As for bonuses, there are indeed specific ones. Heavy weapons fire 5-round bursts and do a lot of suppression. Sniper rifles are more accurate than normal rifles and have a longer range. However, both sniper rifles and machineguns are heavy weapons so their accuracy goes down if the soldier moves.

4. There are some bugs. Even aside from teleporters, I've seen aliens on the 2nd floor shoot down and even outside. Landing ships are particularly bad.

6. I think that is a bug.

7. That is part of the intention I believe, though the exact numbers are still being balanced. Things like highest-aim sniper rifle shots aren't for rookies, they're for good soldiers.

8. I really enjoy that missions are now the primary way of getting money. No more selling stuff by the million! I would, though, be happy to see some kind of cost for grenades and all those infinite items.

9. Yes, this is classic X-COM. Fresh soldiers especially seem to be amazingly bad shots.

10. The flashbangs are very helpful, they can suppress enemies. But are not guaranteed to do so. For best results, flashbangs should land closer (or on top) of the alien, and of course tougher aliens are more resistant. But the weak aliens can be suppressed with extreme ease! Try having a guy with a shield when you storm a UFO and use flashbangs then.

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I was wondering about #6 also. The first time I noticed it, I was like "Cool, I can do 2 missions now in 1 trip for extra $$$$." I changed my dropship's target to the UFO, cleared the site, and was very surprised when this counted as completing the terror mission (even though I technically didn't even go there).

I must say, that as bad as the terror missions are, I will usually quite happily retarget the landed UFO and take the win that way. At least I can get my men out of the ship and into some kind of position before a dozen Seb. elites and 3 giant hover discs converge on my poor troops simultaneously.

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3. There are no classes. you have mistaken the loadout quick selection for something that it is not. You can change this yourself, and the purpose is to make it easier toequip and resupply your soldiers.

7: Both the sniper rifle and LMG suffers a accuracy penalty if the soldier has moved before firing.

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1. I completely agree but I'm also trying to look at this as if I was fresh to this type of game. At the start ..... with the preset 2 Condors it was difficult to down my first normal scout. If I hadn't of played this for a bit I might have been turned off from it. I admit back under V14 I almost stopped playing because I kept losing fighters. V19 has been a lot better for me but I'm also used to it

2. I'll keep this in mind though it drives me nuts upgrading in this fashion. It makes sense but I'd still like the finer control

3. If you notice your soldiers are labeled with "Assault, Heavy and Sniper", though I don't see a difference. The weapons I understand..... soldiers ..... no clue why they are labeled but don't have anything special to them.

7. I'd go for that, though there is still some balance work for sure

8. LOL I loved the moment you went to buy something and realized you have 50 plasma rifles or the moments I was so short of cash I had to start selling things I didn't want. I live more for the strategy of research and downing the UFO then the missions... So naturally I rely on other means of income ..... such as manufactoring

10. Your kidding right? I've yet to actually get this to happen! I'll try again tonight but last time I tried (couple days ago) I must have dropped 5 on some poor guy for him to blast a hole throw me when I proceeded to walk in the UFO

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Hmm you know, that point about soldier classes is actually a very good one. The UI needs to make it more clear somehow that these are just loadout templates and not classes. It is now very easy to get the mistaken idea that your soldiers have some difference based on whether they're a rifleman or a sniper.

As for flashbangs, I don't know what you're doing wrong. A flash directly on the tile where the alien is will normally stun any of the lower tiers. There is a random element involved, but yep, flashbangs are strong!

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1) Yeah, I used tactics straight out of Firaxis' Xcom Air Combat Manual initially. Results were....less than satisfactory. Watching air combat tutorial videos in this forum helped immensely.

5) Usually happens to me after finishing a ground mission. Clicking on any tab (units, planes, research etc.) frequently results in a CTD. Thankfully the game autosaves after a mission so it's not a deal breaker, takes <10sec to get back in. Still, this should really be fixed before final release.

7) Got sick of the slow pace of combat owing to crazy high TU costs so I went & halved the values in the XMLs. The aliens got accuracy & damage boosts to compensate for my higher rate of fire. Human pea-shooters should be quick-firing pieces, think Jet Harpoon from TFTD, those were balls.

10) The aliens are actually pretty helpful as they yell out the word "SUPPRESSED" when under the effects of suppression. If they keep quiet it means they're not suppressed and you shouldn't make any sudden moves in front of them.

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10. Your kidding right? I've yet to actually get this to happen! I'll try again tonight but last time I tried (couple days ago) I must have dropped 5 on some poor guy for him to blast a hole throw me when I proceeded to walk in the UFO

Don't throw the flashbang from where the aliens can see you. So, when you open an alien door, have a guy standing back and to the right or left out of the direct line of sight of any aliens. Then throw the flashbang as close to them as you can. Alternatively, open the door and have someone out of sight throw smoke on you. Then use the guy who opened the door to chuck the flashbang to the alien's location. Then run in and shotgun him to death.

Finally, I have noticed that some of the higher tier aliens (and the androns) are almost totally immune to flashbangs. Lower tier aliens like caesans seem to be the most effected.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I love posts like these. They're a great jump-off point for discussions on all sorts of things and they always make me think. My two cents, having played the game for a relatively long time (though of course not nearly as long as many others here):

1. yup, fighters die easily and you need tactics to take down UFOs. Having played the original X-Com, where all you did was hit the "Cautious attack" button and watch the enemy go down, this is a huge, huge improvement in my eyes. In fact, my personal main problem is that the dogfight AI could use improvement. My favourite tactic is to use one fighter as bait while the other shoots the UFO down. IMO, if an AI craft is being threatened by a fighter while trying to reach a target that is out of range, it should switch targets and defend itself against the Condor that is about to shoot it down. Things like that.

2. I'm not sure what you're asking here. If you want to be able to choose what stats soldiers improve, however, then I'm voting no. This works in D&D-style role-playing games and such, but I don't feel it fits a realistic title like Xenonauts. Come to think of it, though, I would support the option to prioritize certain stats when sending units to training (for example, "okay, I'm sending you off for a 10 days training course, and I want to prioritize your TU and Bravery training).

3. As far as I understand, "classes" are just different presets intended to make it less time-consuming for you to equip your troops.

4. Nothing to add, except, please of course the "Don't make me shoot out windows before I can fire through them" issue ;) .

7. Actually, I find this a very, very good way to balance the sniper rifle. If we're going to have a 95% accuracy weapon, it needs some sort of shortcoming to not be overpowered -- and either way, sniping in reality is far more complicated than just lining up a target and pulling the trigger. The fact that you have to be careful to put the sniper in the right spot, because he's the most effective when he does nothing but fire, adds a lot to the game in my eyes.

8. This has been discussed endlessly, but personally I like it the way it is now. In the original X-Com there was virtually no reason to build laser weapons because you could start using plasma weapons recovered from the battlefield pretty much right off the bat. Either way, the devs have said that money is meant to be in short supply, forcing you to make some strategic decisions on how to spend them.

I actually like the unlimited weapons thing, too, now that I've gotten used to it. The Xenonauts are a tiny force, not a global army, and keeping them supplied with all the gear and weapons they need shouldn't be difficult at all.

9. Uncertain on this one, so I'll pass.

10. I use flashbangs a lot, of course they don't remove reaction fire entirely, but popping off one or two before storming a room or moving troops out of cover does increase their chances of survival. I suppose the game would be too easy if you could just throw a flashbang and then let loose without fear of being shot at in return.

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