XCOM 2: War of the Chosen

War of the Chosen is a generous expansion that's bustling with brilliant new systems that's a must for anyone who's completed XCOM 2.

Key events

Urdnot Wrex, Clementine, Elizabeth, Claptrap, HK-47: these video game companions all conjure up distinct memories for the people who met them and played alongside them. Those close-shaves, those funny moments, those last minute saves. These complex pieces of code have transcended their unreality by tapping into our emotions from the very primal to the deeply complex.

XCOM 2: War of the Chosen review

RecommendedXCOM 2: War of the Chosen review

Welcome back (again), Commander.

War of the Chosen's first mission plays out exactly the same as in the original XCOM 2, which caught me a little by surprise. After being treated to a brand new intro cinematic that partly rewrites how the Commander is rescued in the opening moments of XCOM 2, I was expecting something new, something flashy. But there I was, once again, leading four under equipped rookies into Operation Gatecrasher and wishing they'd brought a few more grenades.

I knew War of the Chosen would be an expansion that built upon the existing campaign (you'll need to start your playthrough from scratch, by the way), but at first it seems a bit too familiar. Disheartened, I got to throwing my grenades and missing 60 per cent shots. The mission ended, the monument fell, and I returned with my squad to the Avenger. And from that point onwards, almost everything I knew about XCOM 2 changed. A slow start perhaps, but once it gets going, this game never looks quite the same again.

XCOM 2: War of the Chosen

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Ahead of the release of XCOM 2: War of the Chosen, Firaxis has released one of its most anticipated features as a free download: the photobooth. Okay, well, it was one of my most anticipated features anyway.

XCOM 2's expansion is going to be bloody massive. We've talked about this already, following its announcement at E3, but that first trailer only scratched the surface of what Firaxis has been working on. They couldn't properly convey that many new systems in a two-minute video, it's jsut not feasible.

Say what you will about Firaxis, the developer of XCOM and Civilization, it doesn't pull any punches when it comes to expansions. This studio has a fantastic history of using them to tackle big, fundamental issues with their games while adding boatloads of new stuff in the process.