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War of the Chosen is XCOM 2's new expansion

Now the real war begins.

Jake Solomon has just been onstage at the PC Gaming Show at this year's E3 to announce an expansion for XCOM 2. It's called War of the Chosen, and it features three new enemy factions and three new ally factions. Oh, and some people who are a bit like zombies. It sounds amazing.

The Chosen refers to the enemies, three champions from the alien army who will challenge players in different ways. The Assassin is duty-bound and honour-driven, focusing on stealth and close quarters. She can vanish from sight and attack with a blade, which sounds incredibly annoying - but in a good way, I think. The Hunter is a long-range sniper. Then there's a Warlock, "Which is, you know, a Warlock," according to Solomon.

Brilliantly, The Chosen evolve as players fight them again and again over the course of the campaign, getting stronger, picking up new abilities and even gaining procedural quirks. Meanwhile, there are three ally factions for the player to hunt down and win over: Reapers, who focus on stealth and sabotage, Skirmishers, who are half-alien hybrids, and Templars, who specialise in Psionic tricks that build power over multiple attacks.

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There's also The Lost to contend with - mutated survivors from humanity's lost cities. These guys sound a bit like The Flood from Halo. They're weak when tackled one at a time, but they swarm relentlessly and are drawn to the sound of combat. Intriguingly, they attack aliens as readily as they'll attack players.

Solomon promised new enemies, soldier classes, environments and stories. He also said War of the Chosen is twice the size of the previous XCOM expansion, and hopefully he didn't just mean that it comes in a really large box.

It sounds ace, and it's out on the 29th August for PC, Xbox One and PS4.

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