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XCOM: Enemy Unknown

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games

This page is for the reboot. For the original game, see X-COM: UFO Defense.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown
XCOM: Enemy Unknown cover
Firaxis Games
Blind Squirrel Games[1]
macOS (OS X) Feral Interactive
Linux Feral Interactive
2K Games
OS X, Linux Feral Interactive
Unreal Engine 3
Release dates
Windows October 9, 2012
macOS (OS X) June 27, 2013
Linux June 19, 2014
Metacritic 89
Monetization One-time game purchase, DLC, Expansion pack
Microtransactions Cosmetic, Finite spend
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Turn-based
Perspectives Bird's-eye view
Controls Point and select
Genres Strategy
Art styles Realistic
Themes Sci-fi
Series X-COM
XCOM: Enemy Unknown on HowLongToBeat
XCOM: Enemy Unknown on IGDB
XCOM: Enemy Unknown on MobyGames
XCOM: Enemy Unknown on Wikipedia
X-COM: UFO Defense 1994
X-COM: Terror from the Deep 1995
X-COM: Apocalypse 1997
X-COM: Interceptor 1998
X-COM: Email games 1999
X-COM: Enforcer 2001
XCOM: Enemy Unknown 2012
The Bureau: XCOM Declassified 2013
XCOM 2 2016
XCOM: Chimera Squad 2020


The macOS (OS X) version of this game does not work on macOS Catalina (version 10.15) or later due to the removal of support for 32-bit-only apps.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a singleplayer and multiplayer bird's-eye view strategy game in the X-COM series.

The game suffers from an abundance of bugs, some being game-breaking as of 2012.[2]

General information

PC Report - XCOM: Enemy Unknown on Linux
UFOpaedia - Wiki for the series
Official Forum - not PC-specific Community Discussions Support Page
Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
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macOS (OS X)
Developer website
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Elite Edition. The Complete Edition also available.
macOS (OS X)
Icon overlay.png
The Complete Edition also available.
macOS (OS X)
Gamesplanet logo.svg
Icon overlay.png
The Complete Edition also available.
macOS (OS X)
The Complete Edition. Single-player only.
Green Man Gaming
Icon overlay.png
The Complete Edition also available.
macOS (OS X)
Humble Store
Icon overlay.png
The Complete Edition also available.
macOS (OS X)
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The Complete Edition also available. Steam CEG
macOS (OS X)
Mac App Store (unavailable)
Icon overlay.png
Elite Edition.
macOS (OS X)
All Linux versions require Steam DRM.
A free demo version is available on Steam: steam://install/216690

Version differences

Complete Pack / Complete Edition include all the DLC.
Elite Edition for OS X includes the two DLC packs, but not the Enemy Within expansion.


DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Elite Soldier Pack Pre-order bonus, also available for separate purchase.
macOS (OS X)
XCOM: Enemy Within
macOS (OS X)
Slingshot Pack
macOS (OS X)

Essential improvements

Skip intro videos

Use the -nostartupmovies command line argument[3]

Enable armor tint options

Enable armor tints[4]
  1. Go to the configuration files location.
  2. Open XComGame.ini or DefaultGame.ini.
  3. Add the following lines at the end

Game data

In-game general settings.
In-game general settings.

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Games\XCOM - Enemy Unknown\XComGame\Config\
%USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Games\XCOM - Enemy Within\XComGame\Config\
macOS (OS X) $HOME/Library/Application Support/Feral Interactive/XCOM Enemy Unknown/
Linux $XDG_DATA_HOME/feral-interactive/XCOM/WritableFiles/
This game follows the XDG Base Directory Specification on Linux.

Save game data location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Games\XCOM - Enemy Unknown\XComGame\SaveData\
%USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Games\XCOM - Enemy Within\XComGame\SaveData\
macOS (OS X) $HOME/Library/Application Support/Feral Interactive/XCOM Enemy Unknown/
Linux $XDG_DATA_HOME/feral-interactive/XCOM/savedata/
Savegames will start appearing in the wrong order once there are around 100.
Having too many savegames can cause slowdowns, which can be fixed by regularly purging them.
Savegames are game localization specific. Hence they are not usable if language is switched after campaign start.
If savegames are not showing when starting the game in Linux after playing it in Windows, go to the savegames location in Linux and change the name of the folder SaveData to savedata.

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Requires enabling backup of the Documents folder in OneDrive on all computers.
Steam Cloud


In-game display settings.
In-game display settings.
In-game graphics settings.
In-game graphics settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
See the WSGF entry to fix the game rendering upside-down.[5]
Mouse position is off the further it gets from the center of the screen
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Includes "Borderless Window" display mode.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Anti-aliasing (AA)
FXAA, cannot be disabled. Lowest setting is "Low".
SGSSAA is available with the flag 0x000100C5.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
No frame rate or refresh rate cap[6] except for cutscenes at ~30 fps.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.
Color blind mode
Game's color scheme is inherently friendly (no dedicated mode).[7]
HBAO is available with the flags 0x00000010 or 0x00000020.
The SLI flag 0x02422405 may offer better performance.
Enemy Within's XComEW.exe isn't listed as part of XCOM Enemy Unknown's Nvidia profile, requiring it to be added manually or the profile duplicated using Nvidia Profile Inspector.


In-game input settings.
In-game input settings.
In-game input settings, menu bindings.
In-game input settings, menu bindings.
In-game input settings, tactical bindings.[Note 1]
In-game input settings, tactical bindings.[Note 1]

Keyboard and mouse, touch State Notes
Can bind two key combinations for each function.
Mouse acceleration
Some in-game functions cause mouse to accelerate wildly (e.g., any area-of-effect ability).
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Touchscreen optimised
Requires Enemy Within DLC.[8] Must be first enabled in options.
Controller support
Must be first enabled in options. KB/M is disabled while controller is enabled.
Full controller support
If Enemy Within is installed, use -FROMLAUNCHER parameter to launch base game.
For the expansion instead replace <path-to-game>\XEW\Binaries\Win32\XCOMLauncher.exe with XComEW.exe
Controller remapping
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Controller sensitivity
Controller Y-axis inversion
Controller types
XInput-compatible controllers
Xbox button prompts
Impulse Trigger vibration
DualShock 4 controllers
DualShock button prompts
Light bar support
Connection modes unknown
Generic/other controllers
Additional information
Controller hotplugging
Haptic feedback
Simultaneous controller+KB/M
KB/M is disabled while controller is enabled.


In-game audio settings.[Note 2]
In-game audio settings.[Note 2]

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
With surround sound enabled certain sounds such as dialogue audio cannot be heard.[9]
At least a few subtitle lines are bugged that will show code references instead of subtitles.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Royalty free audio


Normal UE3 -LANGUAGE and -LANGUAGEFORCOOKING override parameters are broken in base game[Note 3] and will always fallback to English
Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Traditional Chinese
Fan translation, link #1, link #2.
Brazilian Portuguese
Fan translation.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
2 Versus
Use Nucleus Co-op.
LAN play
2 Versus
Steam only.
Online play
2 Versus
Steam only.

Connection types

Turn off multiplayer chat

Turn off multiplayer voice chat[10]
  1. Go to the configuration file(s) location.
  2. Open XComEngine.ini or DefaultEngine.ini.
  3. Find the [VoIP] section
  4. Change the value of bHasVoiceEnabled to false

VR support

3D modes State GG3D Notes
Nvidia 3D Vision
Use Helix Mod to improve 3D support.
TriDef 3D
Officially supported game, see official vorpx game list.

Issues fixed

Save game slowdowns

Having a lot of savegames might cause the game to momentarily freeze while loading the "Save Game" screen.
Delete unnecessary save games[11]


Game appears to run in slow motion

Using Gigabyte's OC Guru overclocking tool can cause the game to appear to run in slow motion, then jump forward in time every few seconds.
Close the OC Guru overlay[12]
  1. In the taskbar, right click on the Gigabyte OC Guru and click Close.
  2. You may need to click show hidden icons to see the icon.

Game crashes or runs extremely slow (AMD Bulldozer CPUs)

See Steam CEG protected games crash or freeze the system[13][14]

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9.0c
Shader Model support 3
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
macOS (OS X)
This 32-bit-only macOS game does not work on macOS Catalina (10.15) or later.


Middleware Notes
Physics PhysX
Interface Scaleform
Cutscenes Bink Video 1.99a
Multiplayer Steamworks


Skip Launcher

Skips over the launch window that asks whether to play Enemy Unknown or Enemy Within, defaulting to playing Enemy Within.

UPKUtils (and PatcherGUI)

Collection of windows console utilities to read/patch UPK files.
Page also hosts PatcherGUI, a tool to install and maintain modifications for XCOM: Enemy Unknown and Enemy Within.
If you are only modding your game, you do not need UPKUtils. PatcherGUI contains all files from UPKUtils necessary for mods, the majority of mods referring to UPKUtils as a requirement are actually referring to PatcherGUI.

Long War Mod Manager

Utility to simplify the installation and removal mods for the Long War overhaul mod.
If you are using this, you do not need PatcherGUI. This utility contains the latest PatcherGUI code already.

XCOM Interface and Gameplay Tweaks

A collection of small interface and gameplay tweaks (no disappearing corpses, Overwatch and Hunker Down delay, adjust soldier gender probability, XP and mobility display, abductions in countries with satellite coverage, etc.)
Requires PatcherGUI or Long War Mod Manager to install.

XCOM Camera Tweaks

A collection of camera tweaks (camera zoom level, min and max zoom, free aiming zoom, rocket aiming zoom and yaw angle).
Some tweaks can lead to weird camera movement and glitching on specific maps.
Requires PatcherGUI or Long War Mod Manager to install.

UI Mod Manager

Adds in-game menu which allows for turning on/off mutator-based mods as well as setting their options without the need to fiddle with .ini files.
Works with any XCOM version (EW, Long War, etc.)

XCOM Mini Mods (EW and LW)

A collection of mutator-based mods for Enemy Within and Long War (sort soldier lists, have button "Make Items Available" anytime, inject meld to cut healing time, clear perks and respec a soldier, Scout Sense, Shadow Step, New Sequential Overwatch, etc.)
Requires UI Mod Manager and PatcherGUI/Long War Mod Manager to install.

X-COM Map Patches

Countless map bug fixes for vanilla XCOM Enemy Within and Long War.

Long War

Overhaul mod that features over 700 distinct changes in gameplay from vanilla gameplay to create a far longer and more intense conflict with the aliens.
Has it's own wiki page on UFOpaedia with a complete breakdown of all changes made.

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) Vista
Processor (CPU) 2.0 GHz Dual Core
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 20 GB
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT
Nvidia GeForce 8600 GT
Windows XP is not supported, but the game can be made to run on it using this guide.
macOS (OS X)
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 10.8.5
Processor (CPU) Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0 GHz
System memory (RAM) 4 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 20 GB
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon HD 4000 Series
Nvidia GeForce 9000 Series
256 MB of VRAM
The following cards require 8 GB of RAM: Nvidia GeForce 320M, Nvidia GeForce 9400 and Intel HD3000.
The OS X version is not supported on these graphics cards: ATI Radeon X1xxx series, ATI Radeon HD2xxx series, Intel GMA series, Nvidia GeForce 7xxx series, Nvidia GeForce 8xxx series.
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) Ubuntu 14.04 64-bit
Processor (CPU) 2.0 GHz
System memory (RAM) 4 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 16 GB
Video card (GPU) AMD Radeon HD 6000 Series
Nvidia GeForce GTX 600 Series
Intel Iris Pro Graphics
512 MB of VRAM
A 64-bit operating system is required.


  1. XCOM:Enemy Within DLC adds one additional option, Toggle Overhead Camera, default binding is O.
  2. Soldiers' Language option is only available when playing XCOM:Enemy Within DLC.
  3. For some reason XComGame internally returns the arguments value with an extra ". Double quotes are a reserved character in all Windows file systems, so every CreateFile call fails.