Let's talk about the ending(SPOILERS- FILLED WITH THEM)

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#1 Posted by Vigilance (270 posts) -

So those who have beaten the game? What did you think of it?

I kind of hated the design of that final level. I got so turned around I would up back at the skyranger at some point.

I found the alien voiceovers a bit annoying as well.

Overall though, minus those quibbles, I liked the ending. Felt it set up a potential sequel nicely.

In fact, for a second I thought the ship would crash in the ocean, setting up a new Terror From The Deep.

I hit the final level with a Hover Plasma SHIV, Heavy, 2 Support, Assault with maxed offensive psionics, and a Sniper. No one died (played on Normal).

#2 Posted by Tennmuerti (8123 posts) -

Difficulty wise i found the last level lacking.

The Overseer mission before it seemed much tougher. An ethereal, 2 sectopods and 2 squads of elite mutons all sticking together and triggering at the same time in a confined space were way way nastier then anything in the last mission. Even the last fight all you had to do is kill 1 ethereal for it to be over really. There needed to be like 2-3 times as many enemies for each wave of "types" imo.

Story wise, liked it quite a bit. Not loved it mind you but it was interesting enough. Sets up new questions nicely (who exiled them, and what were they trying to prepare for), but does not feel like it's leaving stuff hanging on purpose.

#3 Posted by plague102 (128 posts) -

For me the overseer level was just as easy as the last mission as I had two col. snipers with double tap who each individually could take down a sectopod. The last mission was even easier as my sniper just doubletapped the last etheral right out of the gate as soon as the guys warped into the room. The hardest mission by far for me was the assault the base mission, soo many mutons and beserkers rushing you made that mission for me soo much harder.

#4 Posted by Tennmuerti (8123 posts) -

@plague102: Heh I had no Mutons or Berserkers during the base assault, I did it fairly early on. But for Overseer mission took a lot of mid tier soldiers instead of the main top squad.

The point was mainly that the last mission was relatively easier then the overseer mission due to low number of enemies and how spread out they all are.

#5 Posted by Hungry (165 posts) -

The last mission was a cakewalk. I thought it was going to end up being a battle of attrition at one point because I ran out of medpaks by the time I got to the end boss. However, I killed the end boss the second his little cutscene ended so I don't even know if he is a dangerous enemy. Also, the second I got Plasma Rifles Classic Ironman almost became Baby Mode. I can't imagine how easy XCOM is on Normal.

#6 Edited by CaLe (3994 posts) -

It was very anti-climactic for me as my sniper killed the main boss in 1 turn thanks to a critical double tap. I didn't even have to kill any other alien in the room. Still, for an XCOM game I thought the story was perfectly fitting.

#7 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11791 posts) -

I found the last level incredibly underwhelming, to be honest. I just shot a shredder rocket at the final enemy and had my sniper finish it off with a headshot. Basically, Normal difficulty turns into something of a cakewalk after a while and that last level is a good example of that.

#8 Posted by Flaime (527 posts) -

I ordered my shotgun-dude into the last room so that he could see the boss, which meant that my sniper was able to see him as well. My sniper then 2-shotted (double tap) the boss and credits.

So in terms of the last boss fight, yeah, I would say they could have done better. Story-wise I quite liked it all the way through.

#9 Posted by Ares42 (2687 posts) -

I wasn't very satisfied with the ending. It's not terrible, but it seemed cut short (especially compared to earlier X-Coms). As CaLe said, I also finished the game by some quick sniping right after getting to the last room, which was a let down. Other than that the voice of the ethereal was very hard to comprehend. It's an issue I had through the entire game, where it seems like they did terrible mixing on the sound and all voice (which are center channeled on a 5.1 system) just gets muffled by the music etc and his voice was even worse. I also ran into an issue where the in-game music would play over the ending cutscene, making it very scrambled with two different musical scores playing at the same time.

It's a nice twist and all, and it makes me wonder if there's some way to trigger an alternate ending, but it really just felt more like a second act twist rather than an ending. It's an overall problem with the game really, it just lacks a few layers of content. You only get one aircraft upgrade, there's only 3 tiers of weapons, the research lacks the several different layers of alien biology discovery and it could use another level of aliens (instead of just upgraded versions). From some skimming it seems like they've been very true to the first X-Com, and it might just be that I'm mixing things up as I loved Apocalypse too. But if Apoc did one thing right it was to expand the lore behind the game.

#10 Posted by Vigilance (270 posts) -

I was wondering if there were more endings than beat the final level, save Earth, or fail utterly.

Any middle ground?

#11 Posted by vespene_jazz (32 posts) -

Like many, I found the last level to be really easy (besides the Sectopods) and the last Ethereal basically decided to use PSI attacks on my SHIV (real smart).

I did enjoy the premise that we haven't wiped the Alien threat at all, just this force and that they'll be more aliens in the future. I can't wait to see what they do for an expansion / sequel: more aliens archetypes, more alien races, more Ethereal exposure, more mysteries, etc...

#12 Posted by MiniPato (2741 posts) -

Reading on how everyone steamrolled the boss makes me feel like a noob. Walked into the room not knowing what to expect and got my heavy PSI soldier and support mind controlled and was scrambling to kill the ethereals asap. Lost a hover SHIV to the sectopods and 3 soldiers in the final room. But I think having that many casualties makes the final mission and the ending that much more epic. One guy made it out alive.

#13 Posted by Gnorbooth (285 posts) -

@MiniPato: You are not the only one. Had my six colonels pretty much all at full health walking into that final boss fight, and only two made it out alive. Accidentally moved my medic into the like "psi-storm hurricane" looking thing, and she ate it within a turn. My sniper was just plugging away at the boss, but he didn't have double-tap, and he missed his first shot (95% dice rolls son). Like a dumb, I had one of my assault's fight one of the other etheral's, and he ended up eating it. Had two other's mind controlled, and lost one when I killed the boss (severing the link therefore killing my colonel). BUT WE SAVED EARTH! Rest now, my awesome squad I rolled through most of the game with. You died heroes!

#14 Posted by Linkster7 (1028 posts) -

@Ares42 said:

It's a nice twist and all, and it makes me wonder if there's some way to trigger an alternate ending, but it really just felt more like a second act twist rather than an ending. It's an overall problem with the game really, it just lacks a few layers of content. You only get one aircraft upgrade, there's only 3 tiers of weapons, the research lacks the several different layers of alien biology discovery and it could use another level of aliens (instead of just upgraded versions).

This is is exactly what I was thinking, I ran out of stuff to research long before the ending and didn't even use laser weapons. On normal at least the end game is super easy if you manage your meta game properly, I fucked up a couple of things and still had lots of cash before going into the last mission. Only thing I was short on was elerium.

#15 Posted by Shirogane (3578 posts) -

Could someone sum up some of the things in the ending? I feel like i missed a lot of stuff, mostly about the aliens, mainly the Ethereals.

Last room was also pretty easy for me. Sniper took out the the two Elites then the Ethereal in one turn, though it seems like i'm the only one who went for In the Zone instead of double tap.

#16 Edited by PedanticJase (58 posts) -

I ran a mind controlled muton into the last room and had my guys stacked up at the door way led into the final room and just camped out there and picked the guys off.

The end was pretty good I liked that it used your actual guy in the cutscene. I would have liked a few more mission types maybe some more base raids that sortof thing.

Also Normal was way too easy( however I was still scared from the difficulty of the original game) if I was going to give a Xcom vet any advice it would be not to have read this thread before playing the game but also to play on classic.

#17 Posted by Mezmero (1927 posts) -

I finished the game on normal yesterday. The last level was kind of a snooze but I loved the thematic narration of each alien types origins. As the ethereal talked about why they enslaved each alien race for the use of their war I came to the horrific realization that I as the commander had been doing the exact thing with the resources provided by the Xcom project and the global council. I enslaved soldiers from around the globe to die for my cause. I created the tech and the training to make the human race into the very thing that tried to destroy it. I made weapons, armor, and robots to rival the strength of the alien threat.

As far as I can tell the Ethereal were the equivalent of my psionic soldiers whose creators told they were not worthy to inherit the universe and who upon their extinction, sent them to test the races of the universe for a superior form of evolution in the form of "the gift". In spite of their jealously for this mysterious master race they laid waste to entire species but couldn't find a superior "gift" amongst any and turned them into their own soldiers. In a weird way the Ethereals accomplish their mission by the end of this game since the finds from the Xcom project have advanced mankind to the point of no return. I would think the human race will now begin to travel the stars in search of resources to advance even further. Yet another allegory about absolute power corrupting.

The ending itself was kind of a let down. It was a fitting end for this story sure but the fact is that the one who sacrificed herself was actually my back up psionic. I thought the Gallop chamber might compromise the person I sent in so my main psionic dude got stuck being her side kick in a super easy scenario. So she got to have like a destiny and a purpose even though my other dude was one of my OG assault Colonels. It was jarring to say they least. I would love to see more games in this series even though the best part of the premise is now officially spent.

I finished my play through on normal around the 20 hour mark give or take a handful of reloads. I lost 3 countries during the war and had only 2 countries without satellites. I got most of the tech and all of the research done. I had no 4th elevator access in my base and my 3rd level wasn't even full with structures. I let 2 or 3 dudes die in the field and only had 2 psionics unlocked by the end. Normal was a lot more manageable than I thought at first so I think I'll replay on Classic. All in all I think this is a fantastic take on a strategy game and it might be one of the greatest RPGs ever made.

#18 Posted by Zaccheus (1795 posts) -

I found the final level and the ending pretty lack luster, although it was pretty clear to me that the game didn't really care about any kind of story. It's meant to be played many times and it's up to you to create your own stories. Doesn't beat Valkyrie Chronicles as my favorite TBS combat game, but still a great game.

#19 Posted by weavminas (84 posts) -

When the main Ethereal mind controlled my "Chosen One" I hit it with everything I had. My men were out of position and I may have lost if the mission hadn't ended there. I beat normal in 22 hours with one mission reload when I had only 3 soldiers healthy for a terror mission, two of them rookies.

Starting a classic Ironman as my second game was a bad idea. I've lost twice already less than 6 months in.

#20 Posted by crusader8463 (14422 posts) -

I can see the end mission being super hard if you don't have the right squad or were in a bad position when it all triggered, but thankfully I got through it rather easily. Was kind of a let down ending with no big reveals, but I'm glad I got through it all. Now I can try to dig into the other million games that came out on the same day while I wait for this game to get patched so I can attempt an Iron Man game.

#21 Edited by Peanut (954 posts) -

It was underwhelming, but it took a pretty great (see awful) turn at the last second that made it feel a little more fulfilling. I hit the boss with my Psi soldier's storm and followed it with a sniper shot that nearly killed him, double tap second shot at 100% somehow missed and gave the aliens their turn. No damage from anything, but the other two Ethereals mind controlled my sniper, my oldest and favourite soldier, and my secondary heavy who I nicknamed "Death Wish" because of all the times he pulled one out for me at super low health with a last ditch effort. Right as their turn ended the psi storm killed the boss, which killed the other Ethereals, which killed my two mind controlled soldiers. It felt so fucking bitter right there at the end, but that made what was otherwise a cakewalk of a mission at least feel like it had some consequence.

#22 Posted by sins_of_mosin (1556 posts) -

I baited the last guy to come out into the next room where a sniper and rocket took care of it.  I'm really not surprised the last level was a lot easier then the earlier missions.  I mean you should have six fully leveled guys, best armor, and best guns.  And yourself have a lot of experience by then so take it as you learned a lot and then applied that.

#23 Posted by yinstarrunner (1204 posts) -

It was pretty dramatic for me because my squad got FUCKED up by the Sectopods in the previous room.

But really, I think they were pretty dumb when they added a clear line of site from the cover outside the room to the uber ethereal

#24 Posted by chainreaction01 (179 posts) -
@yinstarrunner

It was pretty dramatic for me because my squad got FUCKED up by the Sectopods in the previous room.

But really, I think they were pretty dumb when they added a clear line of site from the cover outside the room to the uber ethereal

Pretty much the same for me. Wasn't expecting duo sectopods when I sprinted my heavies up to cover. Least to say four laser beams to the face wasn't good for their health. Everyone survived at least!
#25 Posted by BisonHero (6564 posts) -

Do the Ethereals in that final boss room have some weird special ability to reflect your shots back at you? I noticed that happening several times, but prior to that, I had never noticed Ethereals had that ability.

Unlike you lucky fuckers, I tried to double tap the Uber Ethereal, but one of my shots got blocked/reflected, which meant the enemy got his turn to mind control my guys and move the Uber Ethereal somewhere else, forcing me to follow him into the room. Then I got really unlucky with several shots missing Ethereals or being reflected, and the whole thing was a huge clusterfuck. Beat it without having to reload, but 4 of my 6 guys died. It was rough.

#26 Posted by Terramagi (1159 posts) -

@BisonHero said:

Do the Ethereals in that final boss room have some weird special ability to reflect your shots back at you? I noticed that happening several times, but prior to that, I had never noticed Ethereals had that ability.

Unlike you lucky fuckers, I tried to double tap the Uber Ethereal, but one of my shots got blocked/reflected, which meant the enemy got his turn to mind control my guys and move the Uber Ethereal somewhere else, forcing me to follow him into the room. Then I got really unlucky with several shots missing Ethereals or being reflected, and the whole thing was a huge clusterfuck. Beat it without having to reload, but 4 of my 6 guys died. It was rough.

All Ethereals have the reflect ability. You just got lucky before.

#27 Posted by BisonHero (6564 posts) -

@Terramagi: Crazy. I probably killed 5 or 6 Ethereals before the final mission, and it literally never triggered once. But in that final boss room? It triggered like 4 or 5 times across the three Ethereals in there. So yeah, only having 4 soldiers under your control, plus having a bunch of key sniper and shotgunner shots get reflected made that battle a goddamn trainwreck. Though maybe that's for the better, since I actually felt some tension during the fight, compared to the roflstomp that apparently everyone else had.

#28 Posted by Wuddel (2092 posts) -

The endboss can be though when you rush in. An they double mind control your soldiers. But a sniper in position makes quick work of it.

Overseer was the thougest mission for me. The coolest I guess were the first supply UFO and then the Battleship UFO (shot down only one, also unlocking the last research Items an the ultimate RPGs/interceptor weapons).

#29 Posted by Laini (185 posts) -

I thought it was okay, was expecting more of a wrap up at the end though.

I didn't do too well on that mission, I ended up with my Volunteer mind controlled and only two Heavies left, who each had about a 20% chance to hit the Etherals. I think I only managed it in the end cos I was playing on Easy.

I tried Normal at first but those Terror missions f'ed me up >_<

#30 Posted by BeachThunder (11987 posts) -

When I entered the final room I mind controlled one of the mutons and got my sniper to kill the main ethereal, then all the enemies disappeared except for my mind controlled muton, so I just ended up wandering around the room with my muton trying to work out what I was supposed to do next. I was waiting for there to be a final boss, but then I figured that just shooting one ethereal was the final boss, so I just killed my muton and that was it =|

Also, I got up to the final room and then couldn't get in because a lone muton from the previous area was still hiding behind a wall D:

#31 Posted by max_alford (8 posts) -

My experience with the last level was great. I lost all but two of my guys, and killed the main ethereal with a 49% shot.

But I guess you can't lose too many countries, because after the end cutscene I get the defeat screen. It was super frustrating, to say the least.

I was really looking forward to a memorial scene or something, but instead it told me I lost, and it was like a slap in the face. I felt completely deflated. You would think they'd tell you if you're going to lose, instead of letting you carry on until the end before it failed you.

has this happened to anyone else?

#32 Posted by BeachThunder (11987 posts) -

@max_alford said:

My experience with the last level was great. I lost all but two of my guys, and killed the main ethereal with a 49% shot.

But I guess you can't lose too many countries, because after the end cutscene I get the defeat screen. It was super frustrating, to say the least.

I was really looking forward to a memorial scene or something, but instead it told me I lost, and it was like a slap in the face. I felt completely deflated. You would think they'd tell you if you're going to lose, instead of letting you carry on until the end before it failed you.

has this happened to anyone else?

That sounds really messed up; did you go to the temple at the very end of the month?

#33 Posted by BisonHero (6564 posts) -

@max_alford said:

My experience with the last level was great. I lost all but two of my guys, and killed the main ethereal with a 49% shot.

But I guess you can't lose too many countries, because after the end cutscene I get the defeat screen. It was super frustrating, to say the least.

I was really looking forward to a memorial scene or something, but instead it told me I lost, and it was like a slap in the face. I felt completely deflated. You would think they'd tell you if you're going to lose, instead of letting you carry on until the end before it failed you.

has this happened to anyone else?

That happened to my friend too, and I'm pretty sure it has to be a bug. There is just no way they would still make you go through the whole effort of the last mission if you were screwed from the start because you lost too many countries.

#34 Posted by bushpusherr (788 posts) -

Triggered the cutscene in the final room. My colonel sniper with double tap took two shots. Final boss fight = over.

Overall I didn't like how the final level was structured. I kept all of my squad together and plunged through the middle. After finishing up the floaters in the first huge hanger area, I spend probably 15 minutes running guys around trying to figure out how to access the next area, only to find out that one obscure room in one of the side passages has a couple sectoids I hadn't killed, which were holding up the advancement of the level. Pretty annoying.

#35 Edited by Ares42 (2687 posts) -

@max_alford: Did your chosen one die ? If so, that would probably be why.

#36 Posted by max_alford (8 posts) -

@Ares42: My chosen one didn't die in battle. Is s/he not supposed to die in the ending cutscene?

@BeachThunder: I think I did it at the beginning of the month. It was a while after the room was open though, I was afraid it would kill the psychic that used it so I wanted to get a scrub.

@BisonHero: You would think that, yeah. It really doesn't make sense. I'm hoping it's a bug.

#37 Edited by Funkydupe (3321 posts) -

Wanted to add a gif I just made. It makes me happy.

#38 Posted by Box3ru13 (703 posts) -

Ending was aight considering the story isn't the main focus. I picked up on it about the time you take the Overseer. "Wait, why would a clearly superior force allow us to fight back and inflict heavy casualties on them?" "Hold on, what if this was their plan all along to buy into their technology and abilities and eventually absorb us?

So that pay-off was kind of nice and they left some questions unanswered about the 4 hologram dudes in the final room or why the ship or self-destruct into a black hole. Normal was a bit easy towards the end but I suspect that's by design. Didn't lose a single country and had complete Sat. coverage in all continents.

Trying to do Classic Ironman now and fuck this game. Its like normal lulled me into thinking I was so bad-ass and then hits me over the head with freaking crits and amazing accuracy all while I shoot back with Rk. and 25% chance of hitting.

Still absolutely amazing game and right up there in my GOTY contention.

#39 Posted by Jokers_Wild (211 posts) -

Other than the part where i killed the two sectopods and elite mutons immediately spawned and killed my support, I didn't find the last mission very challenging.

#40 Posted by kerse (2114 posts) -

I liked it, it was weirdly cut short at the end I felt though, when the title popped up I thought that it was real quick. I actually had some issues with the last room, the ethereals managed to mind control my sniper, the super psi guy and my best assault, so I had some issues, lost an assault. Overall though the game got kinda easy at the end in fully upgraded gear, I just kinda rushed in and destroyed everything, I even started dashing everywhere which would have gotten me killed earlier in the game. Looking forward to doing my classic/ironman run-through though.

#41 Posted by Benny (1953 posts) -

I mind controlled the two elites before the final room and had them both dash in and do as much damage as they could before sending everyone in and psi storming my way to an easy victory.

I thought the ending was fine, it leaves humanity in a strange place that's for sure. I'd like to see how the world changes after advancing science a few hundred years in the space of a few months.

#42 Posted by kortex (444 posts) -

It ended really weird for me.

I got in the last room of the ship and killed/mind controlled the Elites. During the enemy turn they mind controlled my support guy and the guy who activated the alien device. As soon as my turn started all three Ethereals just vanished and so did my support dude and the cut scene started.

I guess the game glitched out? No surprise to me, as glitchy as it was the whole game long. I enjoyed it a lot but it could have needed a little more testing and bug fixing.

#43 Posted by Sanity (1910 posts) -

I like it, leaves room for dlc/expansions or whatever they decide to do. I had to retry a few times on the last mission myself as i had some bad luck with those sectopods. Still though i agree that normal is a cakewalk and classic is hell, kinda wish there was something between them.

#44 Posted by Scotto (1187 posts) -

As other have said - played the game on normal, had my sniper double tap on the final "boss", and the game was over. Found the entire final mission pretty easy, but I think it's just because once you've got your squad wearing all plasma/titan level gear, the game itself just becomes way easier.

Lost one country (Brazil), and towards the end my only resource bottleneck was elerium. Thinking of starting an ironman classic playthough, but I wonder if ironman mode will just make the game unfun, since I'll just be crawling across the map at all times and never wanting to take chances of any kind.

One thing I will say - snipers with squad sight and double tap are hilariously overpowered. They are death incarnate. 95% 12-15 point shots from two miles away (times two) = you win.

#45 Posted by Phatmac (5726 posts) -

The ending cinematic didn't have any sound so I didn't like it that much. I'm probably butt hurt that my Psi Scoops had to die for humanity. :(

#46 Posted by Sin4profit (2937 posts) -

I didn't have a problem with the end level but mainly because i forgot to equip anyone with a medipak and was having too much fun mind controlling enemies and sending them into packs of their own to be murdered. I was surprised by how easy it seemed but that's only in retrospect as not having any medpaks and not knowing what was to come made it fairly intense.

The ending cutscene, i was fine with all the cutscenes in the game, they gave it it's contextual flavour, but the final cutscene was just a strange inconsistency of awkward varying audio levels and cuts between pre rendered footage and in engine footage. I didn't know what Vinny was talking about when he mentioned the cutscenes looking amateurish until that final scene.

In the end though, i had spent enough hours with XCOM that i came away satisfied, though in retrospect i wish i had at least played it on "Classic" difficulty.

#47 Posted by Sin4profit (2937 posts) -

@Vigilance said:

I was wondering if there were more endings than beat the final level, save Earth, or fail utterly.

Any middle ground?

i know there's a "fail" cutscene, i believe from all countries pull out of XCOM, that has a more interesting twist then the final ending but that's about all i know of.

#48 Edited by avantegardener (1127 posts) -

Just finished it, perfectly serviceable last level. What made it interesting, was the fact that I had made my unit people I know, including myself as a sniper, and my girlfriend as an assault. She transpired to be 'gifted one' saving the universe, and as far as we can tell sacrificing herself(probably becoming so sort of super star child), all the while her real world self enjoying a cup of tea beside me on the couch! I think the major successes of the game, was impending feeling of dread (certainly early on) and making you care about your units. This was my 1st X-Com experience, despite being old enough to have played the 1st game. I really enjoyed it, probably my personal game of the year.

#49 Posted by Laiv162560asse (487 posts) -

I think some mention should be made of how nice the final room looks, with the ocean sunset views out the windows. I took an extra few seconds to scroll around and zoom in and out, taking it in, when I noticed the structure. For a large part of the final mission, I assumed that the exterior of the map was some kind of black limbo, like the Alien Base. The sudden exterior view threw things into perspective, that we were fighting above the planet we were trying to save.

@Sin4profit said:

...the final cutscene was just a strange inconsistency of awkward varying audio levels and cuts between pre rendered footage and in engine footage. I didn't know what Vinny was talking about when he mentioned the cutscenes looking amateurish until that final scene.

Yeah I noticed that too. Loved the cutscenes overall though, the tongue-in-cheek, overly earnest B-movie flavour to them.

#50 Posted by Kerned (1170 posts) -

I thought the ending was kind of crap, and the last mission was very uninspired. Like many of you, I popped the Uber-Ethereal as soon as the cutscene ended. I completely missed most of the story in the last level because of how crappy the audio mixing is in this game. I could almost never make out what the alien voice was saying because other sound effects were competing with the dialoge.

But none of that really matters. I wasn't playing this for the story, I was playing it for the tactical combat. In that regard I couldn't have been happier. Planning to give it another go in Ironman.

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