I was playing XCOM: Enemy Unknown on Classic Ironman and so I want to do for XCOM: Enemy Within. Since the Genemodded Armor looks stupid I want to completely neglect gene modding my soldiers. Will doing it without gene-mods make the game much more difficult?

  • 2
    FWIW, some of the alternative "Armor deco" options at least add some shoulders (but not arms) to them and look a little less silly...
    – Flyto
    Commented Jan 1, 2014 at 13:37
  • @Flyto Yeah, but even then they still look they want to go to the gym, showing off their muscles^^
    – Toby
    Commented Jan 1, 2014 at 13:39
  • Gene mods are mostly pretty minor or situational, and they require time-consuming autopsies to use. By the time I tend to get gene mods on Classic, I have lasers, skeleton, an upgraded MEC or two, and the game has already gotten much easier. Commented Jan 2, 2014 at 9:59
  • the mimetic skin gene mod is game breaking imo, makes the game waaay to easy. Though the 'leap' one is quite good.
    – l I
    Commented Jan 7, 2014 at 23:50
  • All my snipers get the Leap mod, and the eye mod. Assaults tend to get that pheromone booster that gives everyone in the vicinity a buff after a successful kill. Commented Jan 30, 2014 at 13:05

2 Answers 2


It should be fairly doable.

Note that you're already setting yourself up for the second most difficult challenge level, so I make no guarantees of your ultimate success, but consciously foregoing all gene mods should mean you have a nice supply of Meld to build your MECH troopers' battlesuits with.

Just bear in mind that as long as EXALT is a going concern you'll be fighting people who /do/ have gene mods on a regular basis.


Short answer: yes

It can be done. My last few C/I playthroughs I barely used Meld (built one Mec) and only used Gene Mods after I had psionics. By that point, it was mostly "what could I spend money on now?"

Most of the Gene Mods are (to me) just gravy. Mimetic Skin was the only truly game-changing mod, and it's super-expensive now. Incidentally, you could gene-mod one soldier and have them be your dedicated operative, and very rarely see the armor.

Note: Money spent on equipment outlasts the soldier you intended to equip. Money (and Meld) spent on Gene Mods die with that soldier.

Final Answer: While Gene Mods can be quite helpful, and Mimetic Skin is pretty awesome, other paths can lead to success as well.

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