Does the amount of time (turns) passed in a mission affect the chance to hear the enemy?

For example I think if I am slowly moving my squad around the map I can hear the enemy more often which is a large advantage. I would imagine a designer would put that in the game so you don't get too bored looking for the enemy.

  • 2
    I seem to notice that the last group on the map usually causes a lot of hearing triggers, possibly as a way to end the map without having to search every nook and cranny for the last guy.
    – l I
    Commented Oct 15, 2012 at 22:30

1 Answer 1


I think hearing enemies is, like many other things in XCOM, a random thing. The chances are higher when you have no enemies in sight and you are far away from them. However, it's possible to hear enemies that are out of line of sight even when you are in combat with other enemies. It's also possible to have two soldiers hear enemies in the same turn. I even had a single soldier hear the same enemy twice with no delay between!

One thing that does seem consistent, however, is that when you hear an enemy, it will resonate from the closest enemy to you. I have never heard enemies from across the map when there are closer ones nearby.

So, your strategy of playing slow is probably just increasing the chances of hearing enemies, as you're taking more turns, which is indeed a useful thing.

  • I have. I heard an enemy from the northwest, so I assumed they were closest, and moved my guys forward into cover protecting from there. Last guy to move was at the back, and uncovered an enemy to the northeast - leaving my whole squad fully exposed.
    – Benubird
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 13:04
  • 1
    @Benubird Did you hear the enemy and move your squad within the same turn? If the listen occurred during, or at the end of the previous turn, you may have experienced enemy teleporting, where squads of enemy units are allowed to teleport to random uncovered areas of the map freely during the initial phase before they are spotted. This is why you may sometimes hear an enemy from one direction, and then hear them from a completely different direction the next turn, if you are doing your initial scouting. Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 13:47

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