Central Officer Bradford
After XCOM was defeated during the first invasion, Central was forced to retreat underground. He went on the run with remnants of a resistance movement and has been wandering aimlessly ever since. His motivation for returning to XCOM is currently unclear but will be revealed during the events that lead to the Resistance's uprising in XCOM 2.
An-Yi "Lily" Shen
XCOM's Chief Engineer is a results-oriented individual who rarely shies away from conflict. Shen joined XCOM aged just 15, where her father, Raymond Shen, was director of the engineering division. After the aliens won the first war, Shen and her father returned to civilian life while she completed her education. When her father died, Shen took it hard, especially since he had yet to complete his life's work: defeating the alien invaders once and for all.
Dr. Richard Tygan
When the aliens conquered Earth, Tygan was quickly identified for his skills and employed within ADVENT's ranks, and led one of the earliest Gene Therapy clinics. When he saw how his work increased control over the human populace, and upon hearing of a growing resistance movement, Tygan decided to flee and seek out XCOM.
The Ranger is an evolution of the Assault class from XCOM: Enemy Unknown. In XCOM 2, the Ranger can support other troops as a nimble scout, or can be jacked up in damage output to make the Ranger a dealer in death. The Ranger carries the usual shotgun or assault rifle loadout but it's the Ranger’s secondary weapon, a sword, which offers unique and bloody methods of dispatching aliens.
The Grenadier has a simple solution to the alien problem: just blow everything up. XCOM 2’s Grenadier unit is an evolution of the Heavy in XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Equipped with a grenade launcher and cannon, Grenadiers can choose to either specialize in demolitions or focus on making the most of their minigun.
XCOM 2’s Sharpshooter is an evolution of the Sniper class from XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Unlike its predecessor, the Sharpshooter isn’t exclusively a long-range, high-damage unit, and offers players the freedom to specialize in pistols, as well. Combining sniper rifle and pistol abilities can make the Sharpshooter an extremely powerful unit.
Specialists are masters of tech, and while all units can hack terminals and turrets in XCOM 2, this class has a far greater affinity for such actions. But the real key to a Specialist’s success is how he/she chooses to employ the Gremlin – an unmanned support drone. The Gremlin can be used to attack enemies, hack enemy tech and to provide buffs to allies.
The Psi Operative is a soldier that’s the product of intense training within the Avenger’s Psi Lab facility. Abilities include offensive attacks such as Soulfire, which doles out guaranteed psionic damage, and defensive capabilities that include Stasis shields for teammates. Arguably, the Psi Operative’s most powerful ability is Domination, which enables the soldier to permanently mind control a single enemy on the battlefield and turn it into an ally.
Troopers are ADVENT's standard soldiers. They are equipped with automatic Gauss rifles, a technology that employs high-powered magnets to fire projectiles at incredible velocities.
Troopers are often led by ADVENT Officers, an elite unit that's capable of aiding nearby soldiers. Their abilities include Command Aura, which gives nearby units a boost to their aim; they can issue Death Marks on enemy troops for focused fire; and summon reinforcements from VTOL craft.
The ADVENT Shieldbearer is a defensive powerhouse and arguably the ultimate support unit in XCOM 2. Shieldbearers have special armor that can provide a Shield Bonus to other nearby enemy units on the battlefield, boosting the overall defense of the ADVENT and alien forces.
ADVENT’s most psychotic unit is the Stun Lancer. He has no regard for his own safety and will sacrifice everything to get close to the Resistance soldiers. He will then stab them with an electrified blade. Stun Lancers also have the ability to knock XCOM operatives unconscious with a special stun attack.
The ADVENT MEC is an extremely durable and lethal robotic heavy support unit. Aside from its formidable melee attacks, the MEC can also cause ranged area damage with its deadly micro-missiles.
The Sectopod is a highly mobile bipedal robot that boasts dangerous area-of-effect and focused attack capabilities. Its Lightning Field attack emits a forceful blast in a circular area surrounding the unit and its Wrath Cannon is a high-energy weapon that deals damage in a long line, and can penetrate multiple targets. The Sectopod is at its most dangerous when in High Stance mode – it extends its legs and stands two stories tall, providing improved range and weapon reach. Buildings won’t necessarily protect you from the Sectopod, as it’s fully capable of simply walking through any obstacle in its path.
Through human gene manipulation, the alien invaders have managed to breed a new version of the Sectoid. This improved Sectoid gains a hefty, intimidating frame, while retaining its well-known psionic abilities. One such ability is called Mindspin, a roulette-type mental attack that has a chance to disorient a soldier. As for weaponry, Sectoids will once again brandish their patented wrist-mounted blaster.
XCOM 2’s Viper is the evolution of XCOM: Enemy Unknown’s Thin Man. With her long tongue, the Viper can pull units from cover and draw them out into the open. Get too close and she will pounce, wrapping her lengthy reptilian frame around a soldier with her Bind ability – which, if left unchallenged, will eventually drop a soldier. This genetic abomination also carries a gun and, as if that wasn’t enough to fear, the Viper spits venom too.
The enemy with the strongest melee attack in XCOM 2 is undoubtedly the Berserker. This monstrosity, which also appeared in XCOM: Enemy Unknown, has been greatly enhanced. The Berserker is merciless and has the potential to become enraged, increasing its attack range and damage output. If any unit – whether they be ADVENT or XCOM – gets too close to an enraged Berserker in XCOM 2, it will lash out with a powerful melee attack.
Alien-human DNA manipulation has created a Muton that pairs brute force with the intellect of the human mind, making it more deadly than ever. Mutons are now able to use Suppression against targets to reduce their Aim, while also providing a free reaction shot should that suppressed target decide to move. The Muton is still a brute in close combat: their weapons are equipped with bayonets, and they won’t hesitate to close in to use them.
One of XCOM: Enemy Unknown’s most formidable enemies is the Chryssalid. In XCOM 2, the Chryssalid poses an even greater threat due to its ability to burrow, enabling them to perform sneak attacks. Each attack from a Chryssalid has a chance to poison a soldier. Should a soldier perish while poisoned, they will transform into a cocoon and enter a gestation period. After a set amount of turns, if that cocoon is not destroyed, it will birth three Chryssalids.
During the invasion in XCOM: Enemy Unknown, the aliens unleashed hordes of Floaters to attack and subdue the human population; however, the aliens quickly found out that humanity did not respond well to the Floater’s horrific marriage of flesh and robotics. And so the Archon was born. Archons are designed to be more regal and present humanity with a god-like visage, but behind that countenance is a calculating killer.
The aliens’ power of genetic manipulation knows no bounds. The Faceless transforms from a seemingly ordinary looking human into a towering monstrosity, pictured here. In its transformed state, the Faceless stands nearly one story tall, with an exaggerated reach and strength relative to its full form.
A new hybrid enemy stalks the battlefield, the Andromedon. Each Andromedon sits inside of an advanced Battlesuit, which provides tactical benefits: it can tear down most walls with ease and devastate XCOM soldiers with powerful melee strikes. The Andromedon is immune to fire, poison and acid. There are also reports that the Andromedon’s Battlesuit can act independent of its host, although these reports remain unconfirmed at this time.
Beneath its protective spherical armor lies the powerful Psionic mind of The Gatekeeper. It shares the Sectoid's ability to reanimate corpses as Psionic zombies, although it can raise several at once. It also boasts other Psionic abilities and has a powerful energy weapon. And that’s not all: with its armor opened, The Gatekeeper can unleash its deadly tentacles on nearby XCOM soldiers.