Posted on October 11, 2012, CJ Miozzi XCOM: Enemy Unknown Mods We’d Like to See
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One of the key reasons you want to pick up XCOM: Enemy Unknown on PC is for its moddability. While there presently isn’t any form of editor that ships with the game, XCOM is built on the Unreal Engine 3 and is designed to support modding, so it should only be a matter of time before we see some mods emerge.
When they do, here’s a list of mods we’d like to see.
1. Game Not Over, Man
Once the campaign ends, I’d love the option to simply… keep playing. Rather than start over from scratch with a new base and fresh-faced troops, I want to keep the squad that I’ve “raised” over the past 20 hours and continue kicking alien tail.
This can potentially take the form of a separate game mode that isn’t tied to the campaign, with panic levels that don’t require plot-specific triggers to be manageable. Of course, to make this sort of game mode more viable, it would help to have more technologies to research, a bigger area in which to build a base, and higher levels for your soldiers to reach — but in the interim, I’d be satisfied with a simple “play forever” mode.
2. AI Opponent for Multiplayer
XCOM’s multiplayer mode suffers from the inability to practice against an AI-controlled opponent. It surprised me that the developers didn’t include this simple feature. I’m no programmer, but the AI is already in the game — wouldn’t it be trivial to have the AI control a random team of aliens or soldiers?
3. More Soldier Gear
Seeing the visual progression of your soldiers’ gear throughout the evolution of the campaign is an awesome experience. My only gripe is that… Well, I want more. More options, more increments along that evolutionary path, more choices to make between equally viable pieces of gear.
4. More Soldier Customization
Don’t get me wrong — XCOM already offers tremendous soldier customization options. But hey, why not add more?
The ability to change the gender and nationality of a soldier would be most welcome, as well as custom skins and models. And let’s not forget about sound packs — it’s a little unusual that your Japanese, German, and African soldiers all have American accents.
5. Interceptor Combat Mini-Game
You’ve identified a UFO threat flying over a protected nation. You dispatch an interceptor to gun it down. It’s an exciting moment. Then… you watch wireframe representations of the two crafts duke it out with random number generators.
Wouldn’t it be exciting to have the opportunity to directly control that interceptor and shoot down the UFO yourself in a fully 3D action flight sim mini-game?
Of course, I don’t fault the developers for not including this, because it doesn’t quite fit with the whole turn-based, tactical strategy theme, but that’s what modders are for. Bring in this custom mini-game to spice up interceptor combat for those of us who want to be a little more hands-on.