I had to ignore a call for help from India because the one from Germany had a better reward. Now India is at 4 out of 5 panic bar thingies, and I don't know what I can do to get that back down.

They are not funding me currently, but it seems like it would be bad if that bar fills up. What can I do to get the bar to go back down to normal levels?

Does panic ever go down over time?

  • This is where the implication of your decisions come to play. Since the continents where the abduction sites were not responded will have a rise in panic, you need to take panic into consideration, as well as the prize, and sometimes chose the less profitable mission to keep countries from leaving X-COM. You can think of it as an investment in the long term.
    – SIMEL
    Commented Oct 12, 2012 at 16:15
  • @IlyaMelamed Exactly. And I want to know exactly what kind of effect all the options available to me will have on panic so that I can make educated decisions. Commented Oct 12, 2012 at 16:20
  • 1
    Beyond the reward for the mission itself, the country where you chose to take the mission in will have a reduction in panic. However the whole continents where the other 2 missions are located will suffer from a rise in panic. So that if your case, if you'll refuse a mission in China, Japan and Australia, the panic in India will rise as well, and may lead to India leaving the X-COM. Other than that, see gkimsey's answer.
    – SIMEL
    Commented Oct 12, 2012 at 16:24

3 Answers 3


Here's my aggregated understanding of panic changes. There is still a good bit of uncertainty on some of the more rare cases. Please edit this post if you have more detailed or more correct information! Also feel free to fix my crappy formatting.

Reducing Panic

  • Successfully assault a UFO landing site or crash site
    • -2 panic in the nation the UFO landed/crashed in

  • Complete a council mission (VIP escort, bomb defuse, etc)
    • -1 panic in all nations in all continents?
    • This seems to vary occasionally and may even be random. If it were random I would guess it's a panic reduction between 0 and 2 for each nation

  • Complete a major combat mission objective (i.e. Assault the Alien Base)
    • -2 panic in all nations in all continents
    • This may be different for other mission objectives

  • Build a satellite over a nation
    • -2 panic in the associated nation (-3 or even -4 if the nation specifically requested a satellite)

  • Successfully stop a terror attack
    • -2 panic in all nations on the continent the terror attack occurred in

Mixed Panic Response

  • Successfully respond to an abduction (the 3-choice scenario that happens frequently)
    • -2 panic in the nation you responded to
    • NO panic change in other nations in the continent you responded to
    • +1 panic in every nation in the continents which had an abduction you did not respond to
      • In some cases, I have seen +2 panic in the specific nations that I didn't respond to instead of just +1. I think this may depend on either a) the intensity of the attack or b) the panic level before the abduction took place.

Increase Panic

  • Fail to stop a terror attack
    • +1 (or 2?) panic in all nations on the continent which was attacked
    • The attacked nation leaves the XCOM funding council instantly

  • Fail any other type of mission
    • I haven't actually had this happen yet, but at the least it has no benefit and probably increases panic further than just ignoring the mission would have.

I believe there are slight variations in a lot of these, and panic may even go up somewhat randomly in individual nations which weren't attacked. My justification for this is that I often have individual nations which haven't been targeted by specific activity being at a higher panic level than the other nations on their continent.

Many of the events above aren't directly under the player's control. The things that the player can affect are:

  1. When and in what nations you build satellites.
    • It's actually "wasteful" on potential panic reduction to put up a satellite in a nation with less than 3 panic. Consider this carefully.
    • You may be better off waiting until near the end of the month to put up satellites. Unless you're finishing coverage on a continent, you don't get any immediate benefit, and unless you fail a mission a nation won't leave the council (they leave if the report comes in and they're at 5 panic). A nation that's at panic level 3+ might end up getting attacked, and you can reduce its panic level by responding to it. If you had already put the satellite down you've lost that opportunity.
    • You have to aggressively go after engineers and satellite uplinks to have enough satellites to keep everyone calm. Putting your HQ in Africa for the 30% funding bonus helps in this.
    • Funding from an affluent nation like the United States can provide as much as $120 MORE than the poorer nations, which is the cost of two satellites, so keep it in mind.
  2. When you do major combat missions like the alien base assault
    • Seems advisable to save these for when you can really get a lot of use out of the panic reduction.
    • Obviously you have to have gone through the main mission objectives to get to this point at all, which can be challenging as you're focusing on satellites.
  3. Which nation you respond to when abductions happen
    • Can be a tough choice. Engineers are really important. Money is too. And panic rises in the two continents you don't respond to. Scientists and new soldiers are almost certainly bad choices in the first few months of the game.
  • pretty sure its impossible to hold all the nations. Its a way of pressuring you to keep up with the game since you'll get a game over if you lose 8 countries.
    – l I
    Commented Oct 12, 2012 at 16:31
  • 4
    Some of these numbers are very likely dependent on what difficulty level you are playing at. But being able to lower panic by attacking downed UFOs is a big reason why getting satellite coverage up ASAP is so important in Classic difficulty... one of the only early opportunities you have of lowering panic without raising it elsewhere.
    – Sterno
    Commented Oct 12, 2012 at 18:59
  • I believe that panic goes up by one if you try to shoot down a UFO and fail. I believe it goes up by two if you just ignore it. I'm basing this on some mods I've read about which tweak that value.
    – Sterno
    Commented Oct 15, 2012 at 18:33

You can place a satellite over them so you can have better coverage there (and to do missions there) or do some of the council missions, they sometimes reduce every country's panic.

UPDATE: Also after finishing major events (Shooting down first UFO and assaulting it, assaulting base, etc) you reduce global panic levels.


Any mission you do in India should lower the panic meter for India. This could be a council mission (bomb, abduction, etc) or a downed UFO.

  • So apart from shooting down UFO's (which requires having a satellite in orbit) and waiting for the council to provide me with 3 missions of which one is India and the other two will be ignored and thus threat level increased, there are no other ways of reducing the panic levels in a country? Do these ways even reduce panic levels or do they just prevent it from rising any higher than it all ready is?
    – LexC
    Commented Oct 10, 2012 at 18:15

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