Best/Worst Turnaround in Battle

#1 Posted by MiniPato (2714 posts) -

XCOM is a game where one false move can turn an assured victory into utter failure and where strategic ingenuity can turn the tide of battle in your favor no matter how high the deck is stacked against you. So tell me of the best/worst turnarounds you have experienced in XCOM.

I experienced one yesterday playing classic ironman. It was during the escort mission on the broken bridge with only cars and trucks for cover. Cleaned house of the thin men, put my men on overwatch to kill the reinforcements during the extraction to the ship. There was only one thin man left standing in the way of my victory. I move my VIP out of full cover from behind the truck to move next to my soldier. Then I realized I didn't want him caught in a poison cloud as thin men are known to shoot poison at soldiers, so I moved him back behind the truck for full cover. Next turn comes, the thin man shoots at my soldier. Luckily he misses. Unluckily, he hits the truck that the VIP is taking cover next to. Next turn comes and the truck explodes taking the VIP with it.

That was more bad luck I guess, no way I could have predicted that. The one time aliens don't have crazy sniper accuracy, it screws me over.

#2 Posted by EthanielRain (755 posts) -

My rookie heavy, Jeff Gerstmann, fired a rocket way off target, killing two of my most relied upon veteran soldiers. In my head I heard him laugh :(

I haven't played the game enough to have HUGE swings yet, but man...that both pissed me off & gave me much amusement.

#3 Posted by Tim_the_Corsair (3065 posts) -

In my first play through (normal ironman), I came across my first Cyberdisk and promptly wasted it by focussing fire (including a couple of rockets)

Feeling good about myself, advanced and triggered two groups of Mutons who proceeded to slaughter my veteran squad with some damn lucky shooting (and some bad tactics on my behalf), until I managed to finish the mission with only my Assault Captain alive on 1 bar.

I then got back to base and immediately got a large UFO. Needless to say that that was the end of that playthrough after a game where I had been rolling along pretty well.

I'm being VERY careful this game, let me tell you

#4 Posted by Sackmanjones (4650 posts) -

Ill share some stories tomorrow but I just beat the first base and only lost one man. I was pretty psyched about that considering I prepared to lose all of my soldiers.

#5 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7039 posts) -

Having my Swedish sniper, Lisbeth Salander kill a Cyberdisc with a double tap of 2 crits, the turn before it was a guarantee that thing would fling a grenade and kill 3 of my best soldiers. I love you Lisbeth. And your like, 65 kills.

#6 Edited by HH (595 posts) -

i'm at the end of the game, just the final mission to go, but i decided to level up my psi's a bit before i take it on, so i shoot down a huge ufo and pile in with my vets, only i've obviously gotten too confident, because i've only got one support with me, and BLAM run into 2 sectopods that completely brush off two rocket attacks and a wave of grenades, and three of my vets eat it, inlcuding the heavy that's been there from day one, and the support. so what do i do? pull out? two of the three left are wounded on half health, but it looks like there's only one room to go, and fuckit, it's payback time. BLAM it's full of muton heavies and they kill my leader, an assault who's way ahead on kills with 82 under her belt. my final two (the two psi's) take out the ethereal commander by the skin of their teeth and walk out of there like arnie at the end of predator.

after coasting on victories for so long disaster has finally struck, and now i have to level up half a squad, under the leadership of these two jaded old-schoolers, yet it has been the best mission in the game for me so far, the most memorable, marked by tragic loss, which is what this game gets, it has given this playthrough an epic dimension.

#7 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

Beating the Alien Base is a hardcoded turningpoint - especially on Classic difficulty and above. -2 panic worldwide? Reducing frequency of Abductions and such?

The world was on the verge of falling apart in my third Ironman Classic run, then I beat the Alien Base with a handful of rookies and one freshly-minted sniper squaddie, as well as one freshly recruited mid-ranking assault veteran - with Laser weapons and zero bodyarmor. Now it looks like I'll be able to pull through.

#8 Edited by Zaccheus (1784 posts) -

I have on super bad situation where my guy was flanked on both sides and had 2 bars of health left. I managed to run and gun the other guy but missed twice on the other. In a desperate attempt I fired a rocket right at the last enemy so that the guy who had only 2 health was barely outside the range of it. 90% accuracy is pretty good, but I had at least one rocket miss by a mile during my playthrough. Luckily not this time. When the guy was surrounded I immediately "knew" he was dead so I was pretty damn pleased that he didn't. This was on Ironman of course.

#9 Posted by Terramagi (1159 posts) -

@Zaccheus said:

I have on super bad situation where my guy was flanked on both sides and had 2 bars of health left. I managed to run and gun the other guy but missed twice on the other. In a desperate attempt I fired a rocket right at the last enemy so that the guy who had only 2 health was barely outside the range of it. 90% accuracy is pretty good, but I had at least one rocket miss by a mile during my playthrough. Luckily not this time. When the guy was surrounded I immediately "knew" he was dead so I was pretty damn pleased that he didn't. This was on Ironman of course.

I had a Heavy surrounded by 3 Cryssalids throw a grenade at his own feet in order to soften them up for the rest of my team that was in range to take them out.

#10 Posted by Grillbar (1792 posts) -

started a mission where when i took one step every enemy in the map spawned on top on me. 6 thin men, 3 normal aliens, and 4 of those green once with plasma rifles. the green once of my left flank thin men of my right and aliens in front in a house, and cover was sparse. I was super fucked and some how killed every one so fast and after using health packs 2 times only one had lost 1 hp.

after that i launched 3 satellites and save my self from loosing 3 countries.

#11 Posted by Baal_Sagoth (1223 posts) -

I encountered an indoor Cyberdisc with its two drones while only two soldiers had their actions left (after a chaotic indoors bloodbath that left the squad somewhat scattered and hurting badly). My fantastic assault lady runs & guns to an elevated spot above the disc, takes aim and completely fumbles a 99% hit with her scatter gun. At this point pratically my entire squad is in immediate danger of the unexpected disc and its horrifying splash attacks. I opt to move '47', my sociopathic sniper lady, right next to the assault and snapshot the disc in a final attempt to save the team. She hits, gets a critical result and the disc promptly explodes, taking the drones with it in the resulting explosion.

#12 Posted by Zaccheus (1784 posts) -

@Terramagi said:

I had a Heavy surrounded by 3 Cryssalids throw a grenade at his own feet in order to soften them up for the rest of my team that was in range to take them out.

Badass.

#13 Posted by Laiv162560asse (487 posts) -

Those Cyberdisc explosions really chuck the cat in among the pigeons. That's what screwed me up when I was assaulting the alien base. I had 6 guys alive moving into the last section, with no medkits left, some guys wounded and one guy on 1 bar of health. However I had killed a lot of stuff, had some good soldiers in full health and I didn't expect there to be many aliens left, so I felt good about things. A cyberdisc appears - scary, but by this stage I'd killed 3 without taking much damage so I just got down to business. It hovers into the open and I pile on tons of damage. Somehow, killing so many from long distance had made me forget that they explode. So it exploded, taking out a UFO power source, which took out my two Assaults. Around the next corner are three chryssalids. I had range on them and good vision so they should have been no problem but I screwed up my LOS, screwed up my overwatch orders and fluffed high percentage shots; my heavy who's been there since the tutorial gets zombified. I clean up the mess, but then from out of nowhere the sectoid commander mind controls my sniper. He crits my last heavy for 12 and that guy bleeds out on the floor thinking of his mummy. When my Support guy faceshotted the commander for the victory after a lot of hide and seek, it didn't feel like a win.

The two guys who survived that mission also featured in my best turnaround against the odds. It was my first intact landed UFO. I uncover 6 mutons in a wide open space with only half cover available and they proceed to blow the shit out of most of my squad. That veteran Support manages to stabilise a newbie Assault before getting blown to hell himself. Two other soldiers get slaughtered without ceremony. I have two guys left standing. One is a Captain Assault whom India gave to me as a reward, whose hobby is missing lots of 80% shots in a row and then crying to go home. The other is my Ukrainian Sniper from the base assault who is an awesome shot, at least when it comes to critting his buddies for 12. 

Between the Sniper and the Assault, I finish a couple of mutons off and kill a third with a scattergun blast from the flank. The three remaining mutons retreat to the UFO, so I close in with my Assault, not feeling too hopeful. Then 2 sectoid commanders appear, along with 3 sectoids and I say 'fuck this game'. Assault man gets mind controlled and becomes literally blind in the fog of war, on top of being figuratively blind in terms of shot percentage. I now have one sniper right at the back of the map, so I just stick him in overwatch repeatedly and start sighing. Suddenly the mind control wears off and reveals my Assault standing right there in the middle of the aliens' cosy little UFO family, exposed! I consider kamikaze-ing him and restarting but I check myself, in order that I might better avoid wrecking myself. Instead I run and gun him right out of the UFO into full cover and stick him in overwatch. He's still in LOS of an aimhacking muton, which isn't great, but it does give my sniper squadsight. And my sniper says POP! One-shot crits the muton for 10 damage. TURNING POINTO! My Assault picks off a further, wounded muton with a lucky 40% scattergun blast. Sniper takes down two sectoids in one shot as they mess with mind control. The sectoid commanders emerge from the front of the UFO and get bitten hard by my Sniper's overwatch. Nothing goes their way - they think they're gunslingers, but their pistols can't crit like a scattergun and rifle can, so they go down. The last sectoid falls easily. The last muton is smart, though, and stays holed up out of sight. Assault decides it's time for that kamikaze and rushes in, dodging the alien reaction shot. He rams the scattergun down its throat and rapid-fires. That was a win I definitely didn't think was coming.

Another mini-turnaround: I once had 4 guys with 3 Chryssalids standing next to them and only one move left. I shred-rocketed my guys and they panicked, shooting all the Chryssies. Loved that.

#14 Posted by Terramagi (1159 posts) -

@Zaccheus said:

@Terramagi said:

I had a Heavy surrounded by 3 Cryssalids throw a grenade at his own feet in order to soften them up for the rest of my team that was in range to take them out.

Badass.

Not as much as you think. He was at full health and wearing Titan armour. So his alien grenade only did a third of his health.

It was less of a "heroic sacrifice" and more of a "this is the most cost effective way that ends in you getting out of this alive".

Dude wasn't even injured at the end of that mission. He gave zero shits that entire Classic playthrough.

#15 Edited by Zaccheus (1784 posts) -

@Terramagi said:

@Zaccheus said:

@Terramagi said:

I had a Heavy surrounded by 3 Cryssalids throw a grenade at his own feet in order to soften them up for the rest of my team that was in range to take them out.

Badass.

Not as much as you think. He was at full health and wearing Titan armour. So his alien grenade only did a third of his health.

It was less of a "heroic sacrifice" and more of a "this is the most cost effective way that ends in you getting out of this alive".

Dude wasn't even injured at the end of that mission. He gave zero shits that entire Classic playthrough.

I contend that coming out of that unscathed is actually even more badass. Dropping a grenade on your own feet and giving three Cryssalids double middle fingers (this is how I imagine it) and walking it off afterwards... Tell me that's not badass.

#16 Posted by Terramagi (1159 posts) -

@Zaccheus said:

@Terramagi said:

@Zaccheus said:

@Terramagi said:

I had a Heavy surrounded by 3 Cryssalids throw a grenade at his own feet in order to soften them up for the rest of my team that was in range to take them out.

Badass.

Not as much as you think. He was at full health and wearing Titan armour. So his alien grenade only did a third of his health.

It was less of a "heroic sacrifice" and more of a "this is the most cost effective way that ends in you getting out of this alive".

Dude wasn't even injured at the end of that mission. He gave zero shits that entire Classic playthrough.

I contend that coming out of that unscathed is actually even more badass. Dropping a grenade on your own feet and giving three Cryssalids double middle fingers (this is how I imagine it) and walking it off afterwards... Tell me that's not badass.

That guy actually went on to win the game for me. Sniper crit on the first headshot, Double Tap was reflected. My boy "Prototype" - who in hindsight, I should've renicknamed "gives zero fucks" - launches a Blaster Bomb from the door and blows that motherfucker sky high.

#17 Edited by SomeJerk (3130 posts) -

I started a new ironman game because of the bullshit I had been getting all day long from XCOM (never hitting a shot, enemies always hitting and critting from map lengths away). Saw a group of Sectoids not doing anything, approached in order to rain death over them with my entire gang and they had not spotted me, or been initiated. I get my soldiers in place and end the turn when suddenly, a second previously stationary group eating from green goop-corpses outside triggers and runs to safety, which makes the first group activate and run to safety also. They fire at me but every shot for the first time in forever misses my guys but takes out a wall instead. The wall getting taken out triggers a third group of Sectoids, and now I have the entire first map of an Ironman campaign against me.
 

 Welcome to XCOM, that's X for expletive.
Now it's my turn. (Two sectoids left unseen in the image)
#18 Edited by HerbieBug (4193 posts) -

Sent some of my lower level squad -a major, some Lt.'s, and a couple squaddies- out to do a "small" crashed UFO mission. "Small". Approached crashed UFO with a squaddie, LOL three mutons! Moved a second character on the same turn around to the side entrance, ROFL three more mutons and ROFLCOPTER two sectoid commanders. I retreat the remainder of the group to what I think is a distance outside Mind Control range. I thought wrong. Major gets mind controlled, both squaddies panic, both do critical hits on other squad members. Next turn my mind controlled major KIA's an Lt. which sets off another round of panics.

This is why I don't play ironman.

Also the range on mind control is bullshit. Hit me halfway across the map through two walls will you? Fuck.

#19 Edited by Ares42 (2555 posts) -

Been playing around with Classic Ironman today and had one of those moments that made me go "ok, so this is just a game of chance I guess".

Basically I had been clearing a level (pretty early in the game) and I was doing really well. I think one of my guys was sorta low, but everything else was top notch. So I end up with a single sectoid cornered and started my assault. 84% shot, miss, 80% shot, miss, 52% shot, miss. Ok, starting to get a little annoyed. Then it was his turn. He doesn't run or anything (eventhough I have him flanked), but instead he just turns around and crits one of my guys, dead. That ofc lead to my two other nearby guys pissing their pants and panicking, ending up with one killing the other.

So I have a turn where the only unit I can control is my hurt soldier who's nowhere near the situation (as I wanted to protect him) and I just run him as close as he can. Sectoid again, crit my panicky dude, dead. At that point I just quit the game. At least I learned something from it, get nanoweave asap when playing ironman.

Online

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.