Xcom Second Wave Mod Adds Advance Campaign Options

Some rather neat tweaks have been discovered hidden in the XCOM: Enemy Unknown files. Originally intended to be included as executable features in the final version of the game, the Second Wave options allowed commanders to improve and customize their games, and would have become available after the first completed playthrough. However, the feature was scrapped due to other developmental priorities. 2K hints they may be officially added at some point, but it doesn’t sound like a huge priority for them. Luckily, over at the Xcom Nexus Mod forums, an enterprising modder has figured out how to enable them; he has released a mod called Second Wave that will do just that.

Once you install it, you’ll still have to beat the game once before they’ll become available. You can grab it here. Note, however, that the mod isn’t compatible with the Balance mod, because they both alter the same .exe file.

The tweaks can provide you with the following options:

Confirmed working:

Damage Roulette: Weapons have a much wider range of damage
New Economy: The funding offered by individual council members is randomized
Not Created Equally: Rookies will have random starting stats
The Greater Good: The secret of psionics can only be learned from interrogating a psionic alien
High Stakes: The rewards granted for stopping alien abductions are randomized
Diminishing Returns: The cost of satellites increases per construction
The Blitz: Aliens target a larger set of cities during abduction attacks
More Than Human: The psionic gift is extremely rare

Identified, Still pending:

Results Driven: A country offers less funding as its panic level increases
Hidden Potential: As a soldier is promoted, his or her stats increase randomly
Absolutely Critical: A flanking shot guarantees a critical hit


Red Fog: Any wounds taken in combat will degrade a soldier’s stats for that mission

Marathon: The game takes considerably longer to complete

Of course, if you’re just starting out, you should have a look at Game Front’s helpful beginner’s guide.

Via PC Gamer.

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1 Comment on Xcom Second Wave Mod Adds Advance Campaign Options


On November 2, 2012 at 8:00 am

A shame there’s not a “make game not suck” tweak. It would include changes like:

Let me choose class of squaddies, with forced ratios to ensure balance. These ratios would have a small range to allow for a reasonable degree of playstyle customization (heavy on support, snipers, etc).

Rework the utterly broken to-hit system so it has believable numbers based on cover, weapon used and RANGE, which currently has ZERO effect on hit chance. Also, no more untargetable aliens sniping your squad.

No more free moves for aliens when discovered. And while we’re at it, no more spawns on top of your squad. In fact, let’s trash the idiotic scripted spawns altogether, unless its integral to a mission (which they really shouldn’t be). The escort missions are esp. dumb – once you’ve learned them you can pre-position your guys to murder the “aliens from heaven’. I’m not advocating a return to being attacked on the ramp of my dropship, although I MIGHT if the dropship had point defenses. Maybe a Gatling gun.

Enable reaction fire for all operatives – base 10% chance for rookies and going up by 5% per level to max of 35%. Each reaction shot after the first in a turn would have a decreasing chance to hit. Aliens would use similar scheme.

Add option to disable zombies. I’m sick the death of zombies. That fad can’t go away fast enough. Also make zombies slower and less powerful – why would becoming an undead alien host suddenly make you as strong as the Hulk, and grant you poison? Utter bulls#!t.

Add a real slot-based inventory system, with at least four small slots starting out. Any solder should be able to carry any type of grenade – hell, they can all use a medi-kit, am I supposed to believe that takes less skill to employ than a smoke grenade? Three grenades and a vest is totally believable..anything less is frankly absurd. Swap the triple healing skill for “heals extra HP” skill – support guy can just carry three medikits. Even four medikits is hardly overpowered when you have poisoning going on.

Speaking of poison..the idea of that a skinny alien’s poison spit can outrange some of your guy’s firearms, affects you 100% of the time and is makes a huge lingering cloud is beyond ridiculous. Cut it to frag grenade range, limit it to a single target and add a small chance of resistance (or at least randomize between low, average and high levels of poisoning). If that’s not acceptable then let it be spread via grenade – at least THAT would make the plague believable in its current form.

Why can’t my sniper move and fire just like everyone else? Cut their to-hit chance significantly, sure, but making it a skill I have to level into? Come on, Firaxis.


I could keep going, but that’s a good start for the changes required in order to make XCOM 2012 even marginally worthy of the title.