Sectoid in XCOM 2
These are the stereotypical aliens people have come to think of and History Channel has become all about. They’re lean, mean, and they have a huge cranium. Sectoids are fairly easy to kill off, but they’ll cause groans to emit from any XCOM 2 players because of their special abilities. They use an alien blaster seldomly and often just resort to these psionic powers. Once you see that purple light coming from them, they’re about to either reanimate a dead enemy into a Psi-Zombie, panic one of your soldiers, or the worst one, mind-control them.
The Psi-Zombie is slow and sluggish and needs to be up close to deal some melee damage to one of your soldiers. Panic is a bit annoying, but it’s just a couple of turns of your soldier running away and shooting at the enemy. They’ll likely miss those, and sometimes even shoot at their own squadmates, but it’s nothing compared to the last attack. Mind-Control is the worst of all as one of your soldiers becomes a killing machine for the aliens. Luckily, everything is reversed or canceled out once the Sectoid that initiated it is killed.
Viper in XCOM 2
Vipers are like Jafar from that terrifying scene in Aladdin in alien form and they’re here to make your squad’s life hell. They don’t take many shots, but they do have some devastating powers. Sure, they can use their blaster, they rarely will though. No, Vipers like to stick to a place where they can grab a soldier with their long tongue, drag her or him away, and continuously damage them by binding around them. This does two damage every turn until the Viper is shot or the soldier dies. Additionally, if a Viper is within range and sees multiple soldiers standing together, it will shoot out a poisonous goo that can hit multiple units and damage them each turn.
Yes, the Viper loves damage per turn attacks. Your best bet is to keep soldiers within range of one another. When one is grabbed, shoot at the Viper until its hit. It doesn’t need to die to let go of the bind, and your soldier will have a turn once they are let go. After that, unleash on the stupid snake.
These brutes are easy work. Mutons like to use their blasters from afar, or to get up close and punch. The blaster is not as bad as their punch, let me tell you. But they can certainly be downed before they even get to one of your soldiers. Other than that, they’ll often be in Overwatch or dealing Suppression. Suppression is the same as the skill you can teach one of your Grenadiers; the Muton will continuously shoot at one of your soldiers and if that soldier moves, he will instantly get damaged. In this case, don’t move that soldier. Note that you can still fire or throw a grenade, though, and once the Muton is hit suppression is canceled.
Oh, and watch out for being in a close-knit group when a Muton is around. They love to throw a grenade to cause some ruckus when that happens.
Berserkers are terrifying. They are the monstrous brutes that have a bunch of health and no cares in the world to give. They will run right at your soldiers with the utmost ferocity and very likely one hit kill them. You need to stand back when taking them on. Luckily, they’re really hard to miss, so just get everyone striking the Berserker and it’ll go down in one or two turns. Stay very far back away from it, though. You do not want to be up close.
Chryssalids are annoying assholes. They pop up from the ground and love to move in groups of three. This makes them easy targets for grenades, of course, but they also have a good amount of health backing them up. When you see a Chryssalid, stay as far from it as possible because they love to get up close to attack. When they do and the attack lands, they’ll poison your soldier with Chryssalid poison. When this happens, get them a medkit fast (or, you know, reload) because if they die while poisoned, they’ll become a cocoon that lets out more Chryssalids. Seriously, they’re just plain ol’ bad news. Target and massacre them whenever possible.
The Faceless are a bit annoying but not much trouble generally. They take at most two hits before they’re downed. They’re just disheartening to see because what you thought was a civilian was, surprise, a hulking gross beast. They need to be up close to do any real damage and even then they’re nothing compared to the other melee enemies you can encounter. If you’re far enough away, they’ll use up all their action points before they can attack you. Keep this in mind when you’re moving so you can have a good distance to pick them off.
Archons are pretty strong so you’re going to want to focus on them when you’re in the middle of battle and one pops up. They pack a very powerful punch up close, so keep your distance at all costs. Once you’ve struck them enough, they’ll get even stronger and angrier as they trigger the Battle Frenzy perk. This is just all around terrifying but if you’re striking an Archon with your whole team, you should be able to take it out in two turns or less even.
The attack to watch out for is when it flies up into the air and beams of red light come from the sky above your soldiers. Don’t keep your squad under those lights, move them at least three spaces away immediately. Once you do, keep hitting the Archon with all you have. You’ll see that in the next turn those beams of light will suddenly explode where they were and they do massive damage.
Codex are the creepy Matrix glitches you’ll often see paired with any other enemy in a little group. They are not hard at all to kill, just a bit annoying with their movements. They can teleport wherever and it doesn’t waste their action. So, you could potentially have a soldier hiding perfectly behind a barrier, only for the Codex to teleport behind them and shoot them with a laser blaster (which does considerable damage if it lands).
Luckily, a Codex has pretty terrible health. This is because every time you hit one, they will “Clone.” What this means is another Codex will appear close-by and halve whatever health the first one had. So the original Codex could have six health points, Clone, and now there’s just two Codex with three health points.
Light them both up and they won’t be a menace anymore. Watch out if you’re keeping a group of soldiers together, though, because they do have an attack that forms a giant black hole that covers an area. This not only wastes all of the affected soldiers’ ammo, but in two turns will explode and cause damage. Simply move them out of the area and reload their guns if this happens to your soldiers.
ADVENT Troopers are nothing special. They are a welcome change of pace from the other enemies because they can easily be downed. Oftentimes, they’ll only have four health points which means one hit from a soldier is all it will take. Stay behind cover and you won’t have to worry about them. It’s really the enemy they’re paired with that actually will give you some trouble.
ADVENT Officers are a step above Troopers and they have the special red armor to prove it. They act a lot like a Trooper which is good because that means there’s not much to worry about with them either. However, they do have the target mark ability which locks onto any given soldier they want. This makes it easier for enemies to hit your soldier and deal more damage to them. Once you’ve taken care of the Officer that put the hit out, though, you’ll be back to normal. Again, keep to cover and they shouldn’t be too much trouble.
ADVENT MEC in XCOM 2
ADVENT MEC are the mech units you’ll often see kicking about. They pack a big punch with their blaster, but they’re fairly easy to take down with minimal armor. Light them up with your soldiers’ rifles, snipe them, blow them up with granades, all of these will work well. If you really want to bring on the hurt, though, Specialists were made for taking these guys down hard. If you have a specialist with Haywire Protocol, they’re able to hack into the ADVENT MEC and even have a chance of taking them over to use them against their very teammates. If you’re not at a good level to successfully do that, though, there’s always Combat Protocol. If your Specialist has this, they can really bring the hurt, as that attack does even more damage against electrical enemies.
Advent Stun Lancer in XCOM 2
The ADVENT Stun Lancer is the ADVENT’s answer to XCOM’s Ranger class. They love to get up close to use their melee weapon which can take down your soldier’s health to halfway easily. That is, if they manage to get up close to you. You should pick these off from afar and get rid of them before they become a nuisance. Keep in mind that if they do get up close and land their attack, there’s a good chance that your soldier will become stunned. This could spell some pretty bad news for you, so keep a distance between them and your team.
ADVENT Shield Bearer in XCOM 2
These ADVENT soldiers are such a nuisance and can be pretty deadly with their ability. Not by themselves, honestly. They can easily be picked off over two turns and act a lot like Troopers or Officers. Just keep behind cover and you should be fine. The difficulty begins when there are other enemies around the Shield Bearer. They have the ability to strike the ground so hard that everybody gains three points of extra armor health. This can be a pain if there are a large number of enemies around them. This ability seemingly helps anyone that’s remotely close to the Shield Bearer, and having already tough enemies with an extra three points of armor is awful. Just get them defeated and cut your losses quickly to bring those shields down.