Trying to lead an organization to single-handedly hold off an entire Alien Invasion can be a stressful and taxing job, and many commanders may lose sight of certain tasks. This handy guide is meant as a quick and dirty introduction on the basics of getting of the ground and into the invasion.
For more specialized and advanced guides, please read the following.
Day 1: The beginning of the endEdit
- Start on a low difficulty: If you're new to a Xcom style game such as Xenonauts, it will be wise to start on Easy or Normal before tackling the Insane difficulty. You'll save yourself some heartache if you don't immediately jump into the deep end.
- Get your base operational: Place your initial base somewhere on the planet. Do take note that you'll want to protect as many high paying nations as possible. Realistically, desperately trying to protect South Africa from the get go, while noble, is not going to help pay the bills. Consider placing your first base somewhere such as Europe, North America or Central Asia.
- Get those workers working: You have a team of Scientists and Engineers under your payroll. Fortunately for you your Chief Scientist took the initiative and started research on the invasion already. However don't allow your Labs or Workshops to sit idle if possible.
- Scientists and Engineers will wait vigilantly for your orders, essentially they won't do anything without your instructions. Remind them to research the correct item and build the correct equipment constantly.
- When starting research, consider investing your time in a High Speed Interceptor to start with, you'll thank us when Corvettes start ruining your day.
- Review the troops: Your organization employs the "best of the best". Nonetheless you'll want to personally inspect their stats to determine their roles and job prospects.
- Soldiers turnover rate can be extremely high, be sure to keep a healthy reserve of soldiers on stand by. Generally having around 12 to 16 soldiers in total is a good number.
- The stats most important to you are bravery, accuracy and reflexes in that order. Having your men not go berserk after one psychic attack, and to be able to actually hit a target, are paramount. While accuracy and reflexes level up naturally, bravery will only increase if your soldiers fail to defend against psionic attacks or get medals, making it the hardest stat to increase.
- Strength and Health are also important to note, strength is needed for specialist soldiers (Snipers, Machine gunners, Rocket Launchers), while additional health can make the difference between a one shot death and limping back to the drop ship. However both of these stats level up naturally and easily.
- A good rule of thumb: If any soldier has any stat under 40, don't recruit them.
- Rotate your Soldiers, having only a small group of Majors and a bunch of Privates to the side will only hurt you in the long run. Ranking up as many Soldiers as you can will mean you'll have more good soldiers to spare.
- Organize your inventory: Fortunately for the Xenonauts, you have immediate access to an unlimited quantity of ballistic firearms and equipment, and all that pesky inventory management and stock taking is organized by your dutiful quartermaster.
- What this means is that you're free to mix and match any weapon and equipment combination at will, which lets you customize your squad's equipment with ease.
- Every item is useful, unlike most prior Xcom games. Any weapon is viable under the right circumstances.
- This affords you the opportunity to establish a preferred squad loadout before getting access to more advanced and expensive weapons. Meaning when you do get access to laser weapons you will know exactly what kind of weapons to manufacture.
Month 1: This ain't so bad?Edit
It gets worse, but for now things are manageable. Unfortunately trying to fight off a alien invasion is an extremely costly endeavor, and you will find yourself scraping the bottom of the barrel sooner rather than later. Here's how to keep a grip of your situation.
- Keep enough troops for the helicopter: At all times in the early game you should maintain at least eight soldiers on hand, and make sure they are actually in the helicopter before sending it out only to discover that two people are in it.
- Keep the starting troops alive: Your 10 starting soldiers are unique in that they start off all promoted and have slightly increased stats. All other recruits start off at the bottom of the barrel. Keeping your starting soldiers alive for as long as possible will allow you to build up your other soldiers to comparable levels.
- Keeping the finances in order: There are only a few ways to make money, and 99+ ways to spend it. Be very careful in where you invest your limited funds, and when you do invest in something, fully commit your resources to it. You'll be better off with a fully furnished air force than a under equipped air force and three other underfunded endeavors. The ways to actually make money are limited, and they are...
- Funding: Your primary area of income, at the start of each month you'll be evaluated based on your performance by a council of funding nations, and be allocated a large sum of money. At first you'll earn about $1.5 million each month, but don't be surprised as your maintenance costs rise and the nation funding decreases to be only getting $500,000 a month or only just enough to cover maintenance.
- Assaulting/Air-striking UFOs: You'll gain slightly more money, usually, from assaulting UFOs. During the first months most UFOs only give between $15,000 to $40,000. Barely enough to cover for replacing the soldiers you'll lose on that mission. This number does increase as the UFOs get tougher.
- Selling Alien Artefacts: Usually a bad idea, most useless items are sold off or destroyed after a UFO is taken and whatever is left is actually very important to you, such as Alien Alloys or Alenium . Only sell these items off when you desperately need a quick cash injection, and even then it's still a bad idea. Selling off manufactured items is non-viable as you'll only get half the cost to manufacture it.
- Always respond to Alien Terror Missions: When the Aliens lay siege to a city, you must respond (unless it's Mexico). If you fail to defeat them the local military will resort to dropping a nuclear bomb on the city to stop the Aliens, ruining your relations with that country. Fortunately for you, Aliens won't start launching Terror Missions until around the third month. Just don't ignore them if at all possible.