It’s been over a year since our last campaign against the alien beasts of XCOM 2. So that means it’s about time I sent my friends back into the breach to take on the menace once more. This time, to give a bit of variety, I’m going to run an XCOM: Enemy Within campaign rather than the War of the Chosen from the previous efforts. As before, there’s no save-scumming, and death means death! Let’s get on with the show!
Our story begins, as all good stories do, with an alien invasion force crashing into Earth, resulting in the activation of XCOM. We will be heading into any areas that the alien threat seeks to take control of, take them down, and co-opt their technology to take the fight to them!
We’re initially sent to Europe to investigate reports of aliens in a local graveyard. It seems that some ETs have taken a liking to the recently deceased, but with such a small force they clearly didn’t expect any resistance. Myself, Kerry, Stuart, and Rod made short work of the four sectoids involved. Kerry was promoted to Sniper, I became an Assault soldier, whilst Stuart turned out to be a Heavy weapons expert. Rod spent most of the battle hanging back and didn’t get much out of it, but he did become quite adept at taking cover behind gravestones! A sign of things to come perhaps?
Up next, an abduction attempt in Argentina! Rod leads Josh, Heather, and Pax into the fray thanks to his prior experience. Pax made short work of the first few aliens encountered, forcing them into retreat whilst we pressed forward. Rod pushes ahead whilst Pax provides covering fire but finds himself hit. He shakes it off and manages to take down on threat before tending to his wounds. Heather takes the opportunity to flank our opponents and provides enough distraction for Josh to take them out. We keep up the pressure, pushing our foes into a building site, before taking out the last of them. We find a canister of mysterious liquid which we’ve named Meld. Not sure what it’s good for, but there’s no way we’re leaving any alien material behind. As a result of this, Josh has become a support soldier, Pax is promoted to Assault, and Rod gains the role of Heavy along with a trip to the hospital.
Things seem to be going well for us. But what’s that on our scanner? A UFO?! Best go and shoot the crap out of it! Once our interceptor has shot it down, Heather, Eugene, Pax and myself go to investigate. It doesn’t take long for Eugene to stumble across some survivors who quickly take aim at Heather, leaving her badly wounded. Our team take cover in a diner. Although I try to take the threats down, Heather decides that she’s had enough of this shit, and destroys both threats with a well-placed grenade. Stuart makes a note to not get on her bad side. Having found some more Meld, Eugene comes across another set of survivors hiding out in a big metal structure – the UFO! Pulling a very low percentage shot out of the bag, he takes down one of them, only to trigger a new enemy that seems to be made out of crystals or something. Naming this creature an Outsider, I rush forward to shotgun it in the face but take a few hits from a hidden Sectoid causing me to panic. No long-term harm was done though, as Eugene presses forward and lands another unlikely snapshot to take out the last survivor. Now, how do we get this wreck home? Eugene is promoted to Assault (and is awarded the Urban Combat Medal), whilst Heather becomes a Support soldier.
To round out the day’s action, Kerry, Josh, Emma S, and Eugene head for a holiday to France. By holiday, I of course mean alien abduction location. Emma S comes across a group of four sectoids doing what they do best, and triggers an encounter. This wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for Eugene doing what he does best and setting off another group of enemies. Six Sectoids at once could be tricky. As Eugene takes down an enemy, Josh presses forward and throws a smoke grenade to provide both Eugene and Kerry with some much-needed cover. Eugene and Emma S still takes some hits, but it provides enough protection to allow him, Kerry, and Emma S to take out the bulk of the opposition thanks to some sweet sniping headshots and some well-placed grenades. The final alien leaves itself quite exposed, allowing the squad to put the finishing touch to a mission filled with impressive teamwork. Good job all! Emma S is promoted to Sniper.
It’s early days, and we’ve only bee on four missions, but things seem to be moving along nicely. No-one dies, which is probably the best thing I can say so far. Who knows what will happen next time though…
Kerry C – Sniper
Rob C (me) – Assault
Heather D – Support
Josh P – Support
Stuart D – Heavy
Rod J – Heavy
Pax G – Assault
Emma S – Sniper
Eugene V – Assault