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XCOM: Enemy Unknown classes and abilities guide

Assault Class

The two greatest strengths of the Assault class are an ability to wield a shotgun and the “Run & Gun” ability, which allows for an attack after dashing. For this reason, Assault classes will be dealing tons of damage but likely taking more than any other class.

However, you don’t always have to use an Assault class purely offensively. The Overwatch skill can be used instead of attacking during a Run & Gun, meaning this class can run forward and provide cover as the rest of your team moves up the field.

We used two Assault units in our squad of six – one with a shotgun and one with an assault rifle.

Squaddie Ability

Run & Gun: Allows firing or Overwatch after Dashing on the turn Run & Gun is activated. 2 turn cooldown.

Corporal Abilities (choose one)

Tactical Sense: Confers +5 Defense per enemy in sight (max +20)
Aggression: Convers +10% critical chance per enemy in sight (max +30%)

Sergeant Abilities (choose one)

Lightning Reflexes: Forces the first reaction shot against this unit each turn to miss.
Close and Personal: Confers +30% critical chance against adjacent targets. The bonus declines with distance from the target.

Lieutenant Abilities (choose one)

Flush: Fire a shot that causes enemies to run out of cover. The shot is easy to hit with, but does reduced damage.
Rapid Fire: Take two shots against a single target in quick succession. Each shot carries a -15 penalty to Aim.

Captain Abilities (choose one)

Close Combat Specialist: Confers a reaction shot against any enemy who closes within 4 tiles. Does not require Overwatch.
Bring ‘Em On: Adds 1 damage on critical hits for each enemy the squad can see (up to 5).

Major Ability

Extra Conditioning: Confers bonus health based on which type of armor is equipped. Heavier armor increases the bonus.

Colonel Abilities (choose one)

Resilience: Confers immunity to critical hits.
Killer Instinct: Activating Run & Gun now also grants +50% critical damage for the rest of the turn.

Matt Hughes
No, I am not the UFC fighter, but I did win a bout of fisticuffs against him once. I also freelance for GamesRadar.