The PC Gamer XCOM 2 Campaign - Join the War Effort!

Jan 14, 2020
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Advent took your homes; now take their lives!

Join the PC Gamer XCOM 2 campaign today!


Hello, fellow PC Gamers! We are all very excited to have the PC Gamer forums back and members old and new are flooding in from all corners of the internet. Let us bundle up our forces and take the fight to Advent! As you may know, XCOM 2 is fantastic character-driven strategy game that is great for emergent storytelling. In this game, you can create and customise your own squad of soldiers, give them backstories and deploy them to fight back against alien oppression. I thought it would be fantastic fun to start a new XCOM 2 campaign with you lot playing the leading roles in the narrative! This could be a fun way to get to know one another a little better and hopefully get swept up in the unfolding drama!

Before we can start the campaign, I am going to need you to sign up to the war effort! Please leave a comment with the necessary information down below so I can get your entry sorted. I need at least the following information so I can create an avatar in-game that will represent you. Let's start with the basics:

Name: (simply don't use your real name if you're concerned about privacy)​
Surname:
Nickname: (this should be your forum's account name, for easy identification)​
Nationality:
Gender:
Biography: (a brief 4-6 sentence bio about who you are and why you joined XCOM)​
Here is my character in-game so you have an example of what this is going to look like. Yes, I am aware of the spelling error.

rensje_bio_example.png
After you have provided me with the basics, you can add a little description of your physical appearance so I can try to recreate you in-game to the best of my abilities. Be specific! Things like ethnicity, skin tone, hairstyle and colour, eye colour, facial features and little details like scars, tattoos and headwear are all customisable in the game, so be descriptive! If you own XCOM 2 yourself, you can also create your own character in-game, export the file and send it to me through DMs. I will simply load it into my game. Please note that it would need to be a Vanilla character, NOT a War of the Chosen character! We will be using the season pass DLC.

Just to clarify, you don't actually have to play the game along with me, although I wish we could! Your virtual representations will be the stars in this sci-fi drama, and I will essentially be blogging about and documenting the campaign's progress here in this thread so you can follow along as your characters rise up, get beat down and hopefully come out alive on the other side!

We will keep registration open for about a week or so, depending on how quickly people decide to sign up. Ideally, we're looking for at least 25 entrants to make sure that new soldiers will ALWAYS be drafted from the forum's character pool. PC Gamer staff and moderators, please join in on the fun! We can use your expertise in this fight!

Game Rules

I will be playing the vanilla XCOM 2 campaign including all the season pass DLC, i.e. Alien Hunters, Shen's Last Gift and Anarchy's Children. The difficulty of choice will be Veteran, which equates to 'normal' difficulty. I considered Commander difficulty (properly hard), but I'm not quite good enough at the game for that and I don't want the campaign to end before it begins. Ironman mode will be engaged, so there will be no save-scumming or do-overs! If you die on the field of battle, you are gone forever. End of story, goodbye, the end. If you live but lose a limb, you will just have to make the best of it.

Once the campaign gets underway, I will make an effort to sit down twice a week to play a few missions and write a summary of what happened, adding a little flavour with screenshots, gifs or video where I can. It will take us a fair amount of time to complete the campaign (or fail it!), but they call it 'Long War' for a reason.

I will keep a list at the bottom of this post with links to all the 'chapters' in the story so it will be easy for you to follow along once this topic gets a bit bloated over time.


NameClassRankKillsStatus
RensjeSharpshooterSergeant8Active
ZoidRookieRookie0Active
RoundSpecialistSquaddie0Active
PifanjrGrenadierCorporal4Wounded
WhiskeySharpshooterSquaddie0Active
DelirusRexRangerSergeant10Wounded
ButcherRookieRookie0Active
JammerRangerSquaddie0Active
WolverineRookieRookie0Active
Big CountrySpecialistSergeant8Active
NurseRookieRookie0Active
White WolfRookieRookie0Active
IndieRookieRookie0Active
PCG JamesRookieRookie0Active
WaltzGrenadierSquaddie2Wounded
KahikiRookieRookie0Active
SeriousNERDRookieRookie0Active

Now get those entries in so we can start a war!
The campaign has started but you can still join up.​
 
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Jan 13, 2020
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This is a really cool idea. I loved Enemy Unknown and I think it's high time that I played XCOM 2 as well. I will download it and see about getting a character created and exported! I'll edit this post when I do.

EDIT: Here's my character!

XCOM 2 Screenshot 2020.01.24 - 10.36.23.06.png

Eloise "Zoid" Ziegler
After the alien occupation began, the Ziegler family turned their farm in the French countryside into a waystation for rebels and refugees. Eloise helped her father provide food to the French underground and helped her mother intercept and disrupt alien and ADVENT communications. After her two younger siblings died raiding an ADVENT supply depot, Eloise decided to join XCOM and fight to avenge their deaths.

Her technical skills and guerrilla background would make her a great asset in a Specialist, Ranger, or Sharpshooter role.
 
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I absolutely love this idea mate. I'll be sure to edit this post here with my contributing details in the next 48 hours (work is a little mental right now) - and send you a character file then, too.

Edit: Here's my entry!

XCom2_OQjkYga63F.jpg

Name: Dawg
Surname: Round
Nickname: Round
Nationality: United Kingdom
Gender: Male
Biography: A failing and destitute cartoon illustrator, Dawg Round had spent years trying to launch his own alien-invasion comic series, only to meet indifference from both publishers and the public alike. When the Advent invaded, bringing his once fanciful ideas to a present, threatening reality, he could only react with artistic disgust.
These were the aliens threatening humanity? Surely, his illustrative designs had been much more impressive! How could reality be so boring? Safe to say, Dawg Round has a chip on his shoulder the size of Jupiter, and he could only settle that irritation by joining XCOM and gripping his carbine rifle like a security blanket. He hopes it will make up for his artistic insecurity, despite his inability to admit that out loud.

Here is the link for the character .bin file, hopefully linking to Google Drive downloads isn't against the rules here.
 
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Jan 17, 2020
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I don't have XCOM 2, but I absolutely loved XCOM: Enemy Unkown.

Name: Floris
Surname: de Leeuw
Nickname: Pifanjr
Nationality: Dutch
Biography: Floris was one of the youngest snipers who enlisted at XCOM when the global invastion happened. He moved up the ranks quickly, but saw many of his squad members die in the missions he was sent on and started getting increasingly more hopeless about XCOM's chances of winning. When his last mission went south, he was the only one of the squad to make it out alive. His communications down, he eventually made his way back to civilization, where he learned that the aliens had won.
He went into hiding and has been living as normal of a life as possible in the last years, until he happened to be recognized by a current XCOM member. They convinced him to join the resistance and fight back against the aliens once more.

EDIT: Forgot appearance. I'll be happy with whatever as long as he's a ginger.
 
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Sounds like a great idea! Here's my character's bio:

Name: Karl
Surname: Fletcher
Nickname: Whiskey
Nationality: British
Biography: Karl grew up in the slums of the city and quickly grew his personal fortunes through the art of smuggling. Taking a back-seat in the invasion to focus on his enterprise he was shunned by most around him, especially those that lost friends and family in the war. It wasn't until one of his caravans, carrying 100 crates of the finest whiskey man could find, was intercepted by the aliens and destroyed upon inspection that Karl decided enough was enough. He headed to a known resistance site and took up arms against the enemy. Whiskey was born.

Character Details: Long shoulder-length hair, light full beard, dark brown hair, blue eyes, cigarette in lower face prop. Have fun with the rest of it
 
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Dec 18, 2019
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I've never played XCOM, but I have one of the titles sitting in a library waiting to be played. Maybe you'll be my eventual inspiration!

Name: Zachary
Surname: Davis
Nickname: DelirusRex
Nationality: American
Gender: Male
Biography: Typical small-town guy from the American Midwest, Zach just wanted some fun and adventure. Bored as hell from how things always have been back in the Iowan Wastes, the young thrill-seeker just wanted to get out there and see what's what. And for some reason that led him to XCOM.

Character Deets: A relentlessly white kid with brow-length bleach blonde hair that aggressively waves and a clean-shaven face. Eyes the color of sewage (darker hazel) that require glasses to be anything near functional.
 
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Thanks for your entries, guys! This is exactly what I had in mind!

Once I get home tonight I will create your characters in-game and make screenshots of them for you to look at when you click on your name in the roster. I will try to update those shots from time to time as the campaign progresses.

EDIT: I created characters for the entries I have received so far. Click on your names in the roster for a screenshot. I think you're going to like them!
 
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Thanks for your entries, guys! This is exactly what I had in mind!

Once I get home tonight I will create your characters in-game and make screenshots of them for you to look at when you click on your name in the roster. I will try to update those shots from time to time as the campaign progresses.

EDIT: I created characters for the entries I have received so far. Click on your names in the roster for a screenshot. I think you're going to like them!
Perfect! Looking forward to it kicking off :grin:
 
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Jan 16, 2020
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****! i want to dump a hell of a load of my characters into this topic so much. i want to grab screenshots of a couple of my rookies to this topic. Must i reinstall Xcom2?!

Damn it i didn't export them. they're still there on my pc....

Oh alright. let me download the game again...


Ok, they are WOTC characters but the stuff thats there is enough to give an idea of the faces and appearances!
 
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Right let me dump a few of my WOTC group. Annoyingly all the customisation has screwed up. So not 100% perfect:

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The back stories i'll retype if they're too long.
 
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if it helps use the same names as my team. I've managed to salvage 9 or so of the original crew. The annoying thing thats happening is that if i use a character that i used from the pool throughout the campaign, It updates the look of both characters so the character pool looks messed up.

So word of warning folks, before play, export them to keep a backup first.


obviously, prioritize forum/staff first and feel free to use as many as you want. hell, if we're short on members, feel free to backfilll them with mine, NOTE: a hell of a lot of mine are WOTC customization, will you be downloading any custom mods to augment appearance? A lot of mine use the titanfall stuff, capnbubs accessories, Military camouflage patterns. Oh and some voicepacks.

My personal fav one is the COH Commonwealth Units Voice Pack. Gives my english characters that extra bit of class and authenticity.


Will upload the characters later if i have the time. Got a picture to paint...
 
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if it helps use the same names as my team. I've managed to salvage 9 or so of the original crew. The annoying thing thats happening is that if i use a character that i used from the pool throughout the campaign, It updates the look of both characters so the character pool looks messed up.

So word of warning folks, before play, export them to keep a backup first.


obviously, prioritize forum/staff first and feel free to use as many as you want. hell, if we're short on members, feel free to backfilll them with mine, NOTE: a hell of a lot of mine are WOTC customization, will you be downloading any custom mods to augment appearance? A lot of mine use the titanfall stuff, capnbubs accessories, Military camouflage patterns. Oh and some voicepacks.

My personal fav one is the COH Commonwealth Units Voice Pack. Gives my english characters that extra bit of class and authenticity.


Will upload the characters later if i have the time. Got a picture to paint...
I picked up Capnbubs Accessory Pack for the Berets and a little more helmet customisation, but personally I like to travel light on mods. I will see about getting a voice pack or two installed as well, if they are of sufficient quality.

If you can find the time, could you tell me what the nicknames for Chen, Klaus and Jens are? Every soldier needs a callsign, after all!

Also, should Jens be male? I'm from the Netherlands and here that name is definitely male.
 
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I picked up Capnbubs Accessory Pack for the Berets and a little more helmet customisation, but personally I like to travel light on mods. I will see about getting a voice pack or two installed as well, if they are of sufficient quality.

If you can find the time, could you tell me what the nicknames for Chen, Klaus and Jens are? Every soldier needs a callsign, after all!

Also, should Jens be male? I'm from the Netherlands and here that name is definitely male.
yeah jens is female annoyingly you can't seem to control whether which gender your new recruit is and is random chance where you have to switch/rename them. Jens seemed like jenny so i stuck with it. Feel free to change it to jenny.

For nicknames, i'm going to use the ones that the game gave them so:


jenny lemmens: jammer

note: jennys bio:

Highly Educated and analytical, jenny was a former teacher and scholar in her community. An Indiana Jones type, she prefers to be out in the field rather be sitting being a teaching desk. It probably saved her life as she was away when Advent exterminated the town to destroy a resistance cell rumored to have operated there. Although once a member of the town militia she has very little first hand combat experience. We'll see in the coming months if she can hold her own or be another casualty of war.



Chen Zhu: butcher

klaus Wagner: Wolverine



ok another one to add to the list:
20200125133535_1.jpg

20200125133526_1.jpg


20200125132947_1.jpg


tanabe's Bio:

Kind, Loving housewife who hates violence. Not exactly the sort of person you would expect to join the resistance. But watching your husband and 2 young daughters lined up against a wall and executed by Advent changes a person. A nurse by trade, Tanabe was offered a role in staffing the medical wing, but declined opting to go out into the field. She reasoned that if she was to ever see humanity free, she will have to fight for it just like her family was.


20200125133122_1.jpg20200125133112_1.jpg
 
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one more for today:

20200124224346_1.jpg

nickname: almuhrab


Bios:
Prior to joining XCOM tareq was a smuggler for a small network of poor nomad communities providing goods and luxuries to them. Advent unsurprisingly didn't take it too kindly to his activities and exterminated these communities in a single night. Tareq's Wife and daughter were among those murdered.

the Former Smuggler's hatred keeps him going and would like nothing more than to see Advent's downfall. born and raised in Iran, Tareq is something of a wild card, with no formal training to speak of. He may be just the kind of recruit XCOM needs.
 

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Right a few more from my list:

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Call sign: Trojan


Bio:

Galia was the adopted daughter of a former XCOM operative and ADVENT fugitive. From an early age she was taught how to fight and survive by her Adoptive father. Her fondest memories were the stories of life before the alien invasion and XCOM in particular. When her father finally passed away from natural causes, she set off to find the XCOM resistance and fight ADVENT. Although her training was far from complete she is a skilled and enthusiastic member of the team.


20200124224506_1.jpg

Call sign: Rockstar
 
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Call sign: Blight

nationality: mexico

bios:

Rosa has seen her fair share of fighting against ADVENT. Although raised in an ADVENT city, she railed against the ADVENT administration seeing them as the oppressive slave force that they were. At first it was petty criminal activity, but by her teens she was part of a fringe group of extremists that conducted various terrorist bombings that killed indiscriminately. She doesn't fully trust XCOM, but if she is to continue the fight against ADVENT she has reluctantly agreed to fight.
 
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Bios:
Luis hasn't had the best of luck in life. Prior to joining XCOM he worked as a Dockhand shifting cargo for a living. Life was hard and pay was worse. Things got worse when one day luis got caught between a resistance firefight against Advent. Injured, Advent imprisoned him believing he was part of the insurgency. Luis escaped when the vehicle he was in was attacked, with little choice luis joined the resistance.

Luis has no experience in combat and unsurprisingly suffers from low self esteem and fatalism. it will be a trial by fire for Luis, one we hope he will succeed in.
 
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This one should be legacy content friendly.

Bio:

Prior to joining XCOM Charlie was (reluctantly) training to become a member of his community militia.. Whilst the majority of the miltia was away performing live fire training, Advent attacked. Despite only learning to fire their weapons that morning, the militia recruits charged into battle. Outclassed, the militia were massacred along with the community. Charlie barely escaped with nothing but the clothes on his back and the gun in his hands.

Several years have passed since that fateful day. long enough for him to hone his outdoor skills. But more importantly, to nurture his desire for revenge against Advent.

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Bio:
Callous and a bully, Gabrielle spent much of her time terrorizing the town and starting fights with just about anyone. When ADVENT rolled into town, Gabrielle (unsurprisingly) started a fight with them. ADVENT's retribution was swift and brutal upon their return: the town was razed and everyone was executed. Somehow Gabrielle escaped the carnage and she's pissed. She doesn't care for the town nor the people that she brought ruin, only her revenge against ADVENT is all that matters.





i have a few more, one i'm not sure we can use. Since the old man has a robot arm.
 
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Obviously, prioritize forum/staff first and feel free to use as many as you want. Hell, if we're short on members, feel free to backfilll them with mine.
I have copied five of your characters so far and added them to the roster! They're all really good and I particularly love the diverse backstories, but I am really hoping to get a few more unique entries by different people in. If we can't get any more people to join in on the fun before February 1st, I will use the rest of your characters as well.

I will wait until February 1st before closing the initial signups, and will kick off the campaign shortly after. Anyone who wants to sign up after that date can still do so, their characters will retroactively be worked into the campaign whenever the opportunity presents itself.

Also.. an honorary member of the PC Gamer staff has decided to join our forces!

He could use a bath.

 
Jan 16, 2020
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I have copied five of your characters so far and added them to the roster! They're all really good and I particularly love the diverse backstories, but I am really hoping to get a few more unique entries by different people in. If we can't get any more people to join in on the fun before February 1st, I will use the rest of your characters as well.

fantastic news and no worries. If you used too many of my characters, it might as well have been my campaign. But damn it, i want to see this topic work! Generally speaking i like to create imperfect ordinary people turned resistance fighters, especially when it comes to rookies. i did have a few others like the former solider that's a delusional drunk who thinks he is a reincarnation of a god and a member of company 554. But you can probably see why i don't like using face masks etc as it strips them of their character.

i'll check my legacy xcom game and see what else i can export to my collection. I had a few fleshed out characters there as well that i want to save if i can.
 
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I am really hoping to get a few more unique entries by different people in. If we can't get any more people to join in on the fun before February 1st, I will use the rest of your characters as well.

I will wait until February 1st before closing the initial signups, and will kick off the campaign shortly after. Anyone who wants to sign up after that date can still do so, their characters will retroactively be worked into the campaign whenever the opportunity presents itself.
The more unique entries the better! But if we need to make multiple characters to fill the ranks, @Rensje maybe you could let us know how many characters you want and then we could each contribute another one or two. That way we'd each have 2 or 3 soldiers in the mix instead of each having 1 and you having to fill out the rest of the roster by yourself.

As an added bonus it would help avoid the emotional distress of our one and only soldier dying early on! :alien:
 
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The more unique entries the better! But if we need to make multiple characters to fill the ranks, @Rensje maybe you could let us know how many characters you want and then we could each contribute another one or two. That way we'd each have 2 or 3 soldiers in the mix instead of each having 1 and you having to fill out the rest of the roster by yourself.

As an added bonus it would help avoid the emotional distress of our one and only soldier dying early on! :alien:
I say go for it. make a handful and its bound to make it on the list. Even if it reserves or in the starting team. I've committed enough now so its probably soon we kill our little darlings...
 
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