End of Days – Research and Development Priorities

Part 2.

I thought I was going to be able to sum up the events of XCOM2 in a pretty simple manor last week, but that wasn’t the case by far. Then Cryx came up in the 3rd Edition Warmachine Previews, and I was up to my neck. THEN I bought a house, which requires a ton of work. So, days and days later, I bring to you part two of my final post on XCOM2.

Remember, a ton of Spoilers are beyond this gate. 

In part one I talked about getting the game off and running, acquiring your first Scientist and Engineer, starting your research trees and the facilities you want to get moving. Now we are going to keep moving forward, both chronologically and conceptually, in order to put together a comprehensive strategy of how to take down the game.

Design and development 

When the game begins, you have enough power for two facilities, as I mentioned. This means you have to have a plan for constructing both more power relays as well as your two facilities. For me, this was the Guerrilla Training School and Resistance Comms. This enabled me to capitalize on additional Soldiers and additional revenue as soon as it became available. My Power coils were deep in the Avenger, so there was a significant portion of time where all I had were these two facilities. They served me well.

with only those two, you can get a whole continent along with its bonus and a six man squad. with appropriate weapons and armor, you can delay at this stage long enough to get a slight advantage.

That brings us back around to research. This is a complicated structure that has multiple paths and varying branches that allow for a multitude of outcomes, none of which, after the first few, I find more vital than another.

Here is the research tree.

Its a touch confusing.

Yellow is an actual Research topic.
White is an item you have to build
Orange is a Foundry Project
Pink is a Facility
Faint blue is an Unassigned objective
Bright Yellow is a Shadow Chamber Goal

The Research Projects Simplified Trees.

  • Modular Weapons
    • Magnetic Weapons
      • Gauss Weapons
        • Elerium (With Plated Armor)
          • Plasma Rifle
            • Plasma Lance
            • Storm Gun
            • Beam Cannon
  • Hybrid Materials
    • Plated Armor
      • Elerium (with Gauss Weapons)
        • Powered Armor
  • Alien Biotech
    • Sectoid Autopsy
      • Psionics
    • Faceless Autopsy
    • Viper Autopsy
    • Muton Autopsy
    • Chryssalid Autopsy
    • Berserker Autopsy
    • Archon Autopsy
    • Andromedon Autopsy
    • Gatekeeper Autopsy
    • ADVENT Officer Autopsy
      • ADVENT Trooper Autopsy
      • ADVENT Shieldbearer Autopsy
      • ADVENT Stun Lancer Autopsy
      • ADVENT Turret Breakdown
      • ADVENT MEC Breakdown
      • Sectopod Breakdown
  • Resistance Communications
    • Resistance Radio
  • Facility Lead
  • ADVENT Datapad Decryption
  • Alien Data Cache Decryption
  • Alien Encryption
    • Shadow Chamber Research Tree

These are a pretty simple color coding: Red are ones I prioritize as soon as I have them available. Greens are ones I would only research if you have a chance, and Psionics is pretty useful, but not required, as I learned, until the end of the game.

Even among the red, though, There is so much that is good that I had a simple system: Does it kill aliens. If it does, I would research the project as soon as possible. If it did not, I would wait until I had no research that would kill aliens, and then work on protecting myself, and then I would work on other projects.

weapons, of course, are fairly simple priorities, but there are a few others out there, floating on the edges, that are pretty vital to get out of the way.

Bodies

Alien Biotech – Advent Officer Research.  This allows you to perform Autopsies. There are a number of very strong priorities among the Autopsies, but these are the ones I recommend first.

  1. Stun Lancer – This is fairly early on and will net your Rangers +2 damage on the Melee attacks. Its strong, especially if you can get it fairly quickly.
    1. Upgrade with Archon Autopsy
  2. Advent MEC Breakdown – The Gremlin MK II is a godsend. If you can afford this little bastard, do is as soon as you can.
    1. Upgrade with Sectopod Autopsy.
  3. Muton Autopsy – Plasma Grenades and advanced Explosives are extremely valuable, especially for a Grenadier, and you get an advanced Grenade Launcher.  Recommended.

 

After these few, Go nuts. The rest of the rewards are good, but no where like those above. If you get Psionics early, I’d also gravitate towards the Gatekeeper when you get a chance, to get the Upgraded Psi Amp.

Rooms

In addition to autopsies, there are also a number of facilities that open up as you perform research feats.

  1. Alien Biotech Opens up the Advanced Warfare Center. This is something I would have loved to have earlier. I’d get it as early as possible.
  2. Advent Officer Autopsy grants the ability to build the Proving Grounds, very helpful for building a plethora of good weapon upgrades
  3. Resistance Communications gives Resistance Commss.
  4. Sectoids unlock Psionics, which unlocks the Psi Lab.
  5. Alien Encryption enables the Shadow Chamber to be built. This requires you take down the blacksite.

Explosions

Finally, their are the Proving Grounds Projects that open up. There are a number of them, but I’ll just cover the important ones you should go out of your way to get, much like the prior categories.

  • Plated Armor – This one opens up two Proving ground projects, the EXO suit and the Spider suit. Early on these are useful armors that allow you to take over more of the battlefield and to wield heavier weapons, though at the expense of a utility slot.
    • Powered Armor – Later on you open up the WAR and Wraith suits, essentially upgraded EXO and Spider. Its worth upgrading when you have the time.
  • Muton Autopsy Provides the Plasma Grenade and Advanced Explosivies Projects. They add damage and radius to the basic grenades that everyone carries, and it easily changes the game. Assured damage is one of the best weapons in the arsenal.
  • Shiledbearer Autopsy – Getting experimental armor can be extremely useful in the mid-late game.

 

There are a lot of methods to take with research, and I don’t think any of them are better than any other once you get to the point where you have plated armor and Magnetic Rifles. I held out on Mag. Cannons until extremely late because I was always tossing grenades with my grenadiers, and didn’t want to pay the upfront cost to get a weapon I almost never used bigger and better.

Looks Like I’ll be getting another article out of this final article. Good thing XCOM is sweet.