Difficulty Levels (Apocalypse)
X-COM: Apocalypse has 5 difficulty levels, from Novice to Superhuman. Unlike the previous games the difficulty levels seem to have no effect on the aliens' stats, but rather they alter your initial cash and funding levels, the city map and the alien technology levels.
Starting Money and Funding
|Difficulty Level||Starting Funding||Weekly Income|
The base weekly income is modified each week depending on your last weeks total score and becomes the new base funding amount.
The government itself earns money each week from income tax. Every building you destroy puts people out of jobs, and reduces the government's income. If the government is low on funds, it will never give more than half its current balance to X-COM as income.
X-COM funding will also be terminated if the government becomes hostile for any reason. The decision to terminate is irrevocable.
|Weekly score||Base Funding Change (%)|
Source: Roger Wong's Game Guide
Note: On Medium a weekly score of -7700 gave a -25% reduction. This indicates Wong's negative numbers are wrong and might follow the same pattern as positive scores.
Each difficulty level has its own city map. The higher the level the bigger the map will be. In addition to this, the larger maps also contain more potential for destruction via chain reaction - for example, if one of your craft hits a Transtellar "people tube", the collapsing segments will cause a significant amount of damage to the city (lowering your score and negatively affecting relations). Likewise, at the higher difficulty levels many buildings can be completely destroyed with just a shot or two to the right spot.
Game difficulty also sharply increases the amount of money X-COM has to pay to increase their diplomatic status with an organization, where a starting situation "Neutral" organization will turn to "Allied" with an estimate 15K bribe with Novice (5 to Friendly status, 7 to Allied) the same elevation requires more than 170K on Superhuman difficulty. This leads to much more more rapid decrease with organization relations on higher difficulties.
The higher the level the quicker the aliens will bring their most advanced weapons and equipment to the battlefield, such as Devastator Cannons or Large Disruption Shields. For more information check the specific page dealing with alien technology levels.