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I've noticed that when engaging enemies from behind cover, if you're patient enough in the 3d camera mode, there are times when certain alien types will pop their head out from cover. If I wait for them to peek out, and there is at least 40% to hit you I have hit almost everytime with a crit, resulting in death.

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Confirmation bias is at play here. I sincerely doubt the chance to hit increases. – Frank Dec 18 '12 at 18:16
This would make absolutely no sense in a turn based strategy game such as XCOM. – SaintWacko Dec 18 '12 at 18:23
I guess you are right, i usually wait until they put their heads out of cover to shoot. But I believe that it's more like a placebo effect than real hit chance increase. – Michel Dec 18 '12 at 18:32
It's well-documented elsewhere on the site that this is not only false, but the result of any shot is determined by RNG state that exists before even taking the shot, to prevent save/reload tricks. – user2640 Dec 18 '12 at 18:32
thanks for that Joe, if that truly is the case then it's all in my head- but since I started 'waiting' for the shot, I have killed each and every time- sorry this was not in question form – Shrapnel Dec 18 '12 at 19:20

Half cover reduces chance to hit by 20%. Full cover reduces chance to hit by 40%. Factors which influence chance to hit are displayed when you hit F1 while you are selecting a target.

Animations of the 3d models are not listed in that screen and do not influence chance to hit.

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additionally, with certain large aliens and large weapons, if you are standing adjacent you might actually be INSIDE part of them. Clearly the 3D models have no effect on the hit chance whatsoever. It'd be nice if the Sectopod was always 100% to hit given its massive size, but that's just not the way the game is made. – Shaderach Dec 18 '12 at 21:12

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