f5-nz logo
Story image

Return to the war with XCOM 2: War of the Chosen

26 Oct 2017

The release of Firaxis’ XCOM 2: War of The Chosen was just the excuse that I needed to return to their excellent turn-based sci-fi strategy game.

Initially released in September 2016, XCOM 2 is the sequel to XCOM: Enemy Unknown, the reboot of the classic, X-COM: Enemy Unknown from way back in 1994. A deep, turn-based strategy game, XCOM 2, is set 20 years after the events of the 2013 reboot.

This time, instead of fighting an alien invasion, XCOM (Extraterrestrial Combat Unit) are leading a rebellion against the alien occupation. This means building tech from the ground up and improving your forces to fight a well-established enemy.

The way the XCOM games make you care about your team of unique operatives is really impressive. You train them, name them and customise them- making their inevitable death all the more distressing.   

Unlike most expansion packs, War of The Chosen doesn’t function as a spin-off, side expansion or sequel. Like the last game’s Instead it weaves itself into the original XCOM 2 campaign creating a, sort-of, directors cut.

The original release of XCOM 2 was deep and engaging enough, but War of the Chosen adds another couple of layers to the proceedings. The Chosen is a team of three elite alien soldiers. They appear throughout the game adding to your teams worries in the field.

<div style="text-align: center;"><div style="position:relative;padding-bottom:56.25%;padding-top:30px;height:0;overflow:hidden;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="100%" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/dujS8L7qWAU" style="width:100%;height:100%;" width="100%"></iframe></div>

Each of the Chosen has their own a specialisation. The Hunter snipes from a distance, whereas the Assassin uses stealth sneak up on your team. The Warlock is the sci-fi equivalent of a magic-user class.

As if being pursued by a group of alien hitmen wasn’t enough, the mindless Lost, zombie-like former humans, are also after you. But, if it’s any consolation, they will attack both human XCOM and alien ADVENT units.

The expansion also adds three allied resistance factions, the Templars, the Reapers and the Skirmishers, who provide you with side missions. Members of their ranks can be recruited to your squad as hero units.

New opponents, allies and environments mesh together with extra strategic options and activities make XCOM 2 fresh again. Extremely addictive the first time around, with all the new content, the game is just as fun to play second time around.   

Like the XCOM: Enemy Within expansion for the last game, XCOM 2: War of the Chosen takes XCOM 2 and makes it fresh again. If, like me, you’ve wanted to return, but couldn’t bring yourself to give the game the investment in time that it demands, now would be a good time to change your mind.

Verdict: 8.5/10

Story image
Lenovo reveals new ThinkPad P range
The new mobile workstations include Ultra Performance Mode that trades acoustics and temperature increases for improved performance.More
Story image
2degrees unveils new infrastructure sharing agreement, passes $1b milestone
The company has revealed it has invested $1 billion into its network infrastructure, and has expanded on its venture with Spark and Vodafone to connect the country's rural areas.More
Story image
Trend Micro Home Network Security - giving frazzled parents everywhere just that much more peace of mind
Trend Micro have announced the launch of Trend Micro Guardian, an app which “enhances the parental controls features of Home Network Security, and extends the coverage to outside the home."More
Story image
Hands-on review: Google Nest Mini 2nd generation smart speaker
We take the brand new smart speaker from Google for a runMore
Story image
Kiwi game developers move forward with indigenous gaming platform Katuku Island
“We created Katuku Island to bring cultural literacy to a technological platform that uses Maori Toi graphics, sounds, characters, tribal tattoo and indigenous challenges. As an indigenous researcher and business owner, I wanted to make a difference.”More
Story image
Full reveal: LEGO shares a glimpse of the full Super Mario range
“Sixteen LEGO Super Mario sets have been introduced and I am really looking forward to seeing how people’s play expands with these and the unique Power-Up Packs,” says Nintendo game producer and executive officer Takashi Tezuka. More