XCOM2 just came out. This time aparantly the game is set 20 years in the future, and rather than playing an organization defending Earth, we'll play as an organization trying to reconquer Earth.

XCOM EU/EW Spoilers ahead:

In the end of the previous XCOM, the organization has to chose a psionic character and have him in the party that beats the final assault of the mothership. The thing is, it was all a ruse, merely for Ethereals to test humans to assess 'our' strenght. In the end, the mothership flies up, commanded by the psionic soldier and the end of the game comes with a cliffhanger where the ship explodes and several pieces of the aircraft fall on Earth.

Without spoiling the story of this new game, is XCOM2 a sequel to XCOM EU/EW? If not, is it a sequel to any other XCOM game?


The story of XCOM2 is a divergent future from the start of XCOM: Enemy Unknown -- that is to say, the events of players beating the first game are not canon. In the XCOM 2 Universe, the Earth's governments had abandoned XCOM and surrendered to the aliens by July, just 5 months into the invasion.

I won't spoil the details, but you do get an implication quite early on into the game that playing (and winning) XCOM EU/EW were combat simulations.

So, depending on how you want to interpret that, either the events of the first game did not happen, or, the events of the first game happened, but "it was all a dream", and the hard, cold, reality is that the Aliens won.

  • 3
    Without trying to dwell too much into it, is the xcom-eu's bad ending canon ? (youtube.com/watch?v=ozFdAbhk3tY). In it, the Psionic aliens (the weaker ones) control the XCOM's leadership and remove all the support for the xcom project. Either way, thank you mate =)
    – Oak
    Feb 6 '16 at 7:24
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    @Oak Potentially? I don't think the Spokesman gets psionically controlled in XCOM2, but otherwise its a pretty good match. Feb 6 '16 at 14:51
  • It would be interesting to find out how the player lost in EU/EW exactly. After all, the Resistance sacrificed a lot of men just trying to find the Commander. He couldn't have been that incapable, or else the Resistance wouldn't even have bothered rescuing him. The council betraying the XCOM project sounds like the most likely reason the player lost.
    – Nolonar
    Feb 29 '16 at 14:33

My impression is that it is indeed a direct sequel to XCOM EU/EW only that the canon ending (from an XCOM 2 perspective) in XCOM EU/EW is you NOT winning the game!
Rather, the canon ending is you losing to the aliens, something which most players experienced at one point or another.

As quoted in PC Gamer, what creative director Jake Solomon said on the matter is this:

We realised that most players lost their initial playthrough of Enemy Unknown, and we realised there was an interesting and unique opportunity to have XCOM 2 begin with XCOM losing the invasion.


There is a prequel novel to XCOM 2 called XCOM 2: Resurrection which "bridges the gap between XCOM:EU and XCOM 2".

It's the official prequel novel, so it's canon. Unfortunately I haven't found anyone who's actually read it, so I can't tell you what happens :)


The novel basically follows a group of resistance soldiers who run into the remnants of XCOM. XCOM is running their HQ out of an old submarine at sea (a pretty cool idea - similar to the Avenger, but human tech). They actually get the Avenger up and running by the end of the novel and XCOM 2 along with it. A few characters from both games pop up (Dr. Shen, etc...). It's not bad if you're a fan of the game's storyline.

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