I love a good turn-based strategy game and the XCOM games don't disappoint; they've given me hours and hours of intense gameplay, a great story, and the chance to stack alien bodies like a boss. Now, while most of the other DLC for XCOM 2 is kinda' trash -- except for the "Shen's Last Gift" DLC -- I'm pretty confident that the "War of the Chosen" DLC announced at E3 is going to follow Shen's guidance and be amazing.
But it's a little ways off.
With that in mind, let's take a look at 8 XCOM 2 mods available on the Steam Workshop that you should be playing until "War of the Chosen" gets released on August 29.
Start Your Own Missions is a great mod because it lets you... well... start your own missions. You can spend supplies and intel in the research panel to choose missions that you want to go on, which is useful if you're not getting the type of missions you want to be doing.
This is great for getting more UFO and supply raid missions, which is what I generally use it for.
Download: Start Your Own Missions on Steam Workshop.
I totally agree with the opening statement of this mod's description -- vanilla XCOM 2 laboratories are terrible. In exchange for precious space and resources, all they confer is a minor boost to research speed.
With the Better Laboratory mod, the labs are much more useful, giving you material refunds, bonuses to Intel, and a more reasonable upkeep cost. It also pairs well with the previously mentioned Start Your Own Missions mod, actually making labs a useful facility to build.
Download: Better Laboratory on the Steam Workshop.
This mod adds a ton of new nicknames to the pool that the game has to choose from when your operatives reach a certain rank. For me, this is a very simple mod that adds a layer of immersion because it doesn't make sense when you have three people with the same nickname/callsign on your team.
I mean, really? You mean to tell me that all of the other XCOM agents are calling all three of you berzerker? I find it a bit hard to believe.
Download: Expand Your Callsigns & Nicknames on the Steam Workshop.
One of my favorite aspects about XCOM 2 is crafting unique characters for my teams. I really get into the roleplaying aspect of the game and strive to make each of my characters special in their own way.
With the Random Backstories mod, you get an additional 64 backstories that get added to your agents, in addition to the base game's piddly nine backstories. Most are well-written and interesting, which helps to flesh out teammates and keep from creative burnout when you have 30+ agents on your roster.
Download: Random Backstories on the Steam Workshop.
This mod is another great one if you're going for a more immersive playthrough. You have to take into account that in XCOM 2, your squad is made up of a mix of agents from all nationalities and walks of life. What Squad Cohesion does is makes it so your squad members build up trust and friendships with one another based on a number of factors.
Once you start building up your relationships, you'll get squad bonuses like increased aim, defense, and hacking -- helping to increase your chances of survival out on missions.
Download: Squad Cohesion on the Steam Workshop.
Going along with my theme of immersive mods, I present to you this accessories pack. This pack adds a number of helmets and facial accessories to help bring more options to the table in terms of squad customization without charging you for it under the guise of DLC. *cough* crappy paid "DLC" armors *cough*.
Download: Capnbubs Accessories Pack on the Steam Workshop.
My mod list would not be complete without mentioning Long War 2 -- essentially a full game overhaul mod. This mod offers a laundry list of features that overhaul the entire base XCOM 2 game, stretching out gameplay. Every mission is a battle for life and death, making every victory that much more satisfying.
From new weapon types and classes to a stronger enemy A.I., this is the mod that will truly test your skills and, at times, your sanity.
Download: Long War 2 from the Steam Workshop.
This mod makes it so that tactical mission timers don't start counting down until your squad is no longer concealed. This makes sense that if the enemies don't know you're there, why would the countdown timers be running?
This is especially helpful in Long War 2 because of the increased enemy presence on the maps. It affords you the chance to canvas patrol routes and get eyes on the enemies before striking -- like how actual guerrilla fighters would.
Download: True Concealment for LW2 on the Steam Workshop.
Hopefully, some of these mods will help enhance your XCOM 2 gaming experience and keep your skills sharp while we wait on the "War of the Chosen" DLC, which releases on August 29.
What are some of your favorite XCOM 2 mods? Let's talk about it in the comments below and, as always, thanks for choosing GameSkinny for your gaming news, guides, and reviews!