Goliath (Long War)

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MEC variant of the Gunner class. A Goliath is designed to be a human tank. They have the best HP progression of any class in the game and an unsurpassed selection of defensive perks. They have reasonable aim progression, but their selection of offensive perks is a bit lacking.

Primary Weapon: MEC Primary Weapons
Secondary Weapon: MEC Secondary Weapon Systems
Class-Limited items: MEC Equipment items


Rank Ability
Absorption Fields
Absorption Fields
Reduces most incoming damage to this unit, scaling up as damage increases. Specifically: reduces 40% of any damage taken after 2; after all other damage reduction has been applied.
-1 Mobility.
Lance Corporal
Never panic as a result of getting wounded, allies panicking, allies getting wounded or killed, or the intimidation ability.
Reactive Targeting Sensors
Reactive Targeting Sensors
Unit gets a free shot back at the first enemy who attacks the MEC each turn, provided there's enough ammo to do so.
Fire a shot that may cause non-flying enemies to run to new cover. The shot is easy to hit with (+30 aim), but does reduced damage (-50% base weapon damage), and consumes extra ammo (2 ammo). Hunkered units will not relocate.
+5 Will. +2 Aim, +2 Will. No other bonuses.
Covering Fire
Covering Fire
Allows certain reaction shots to trigger on many enemy actions, not just movement (excludes reload, overwatch, and hunker down actions).
Automated Threat Assessment
Automated Threat Assessment
Confers 0.5 DR (50% chance to absorb one point of damage) at all times, and confers +15 defense when in overwatch until the unit takes an overwatch shot.
Confers +1 damage with primary weapons, rocket launchers, MEC secondary weapons and sidearms. Negates the long-range accuracy penalty with sidearms when shooting beyond 14 meters.
No other bonuses. +2 Will. No other bonuses.
Confers +2 damage for suppression, SAWs, LMGs, explosive grenades, proximity mines and rocket launchers. Confers +4 damage for sniper and long rifles, marksman's, strike and reflex rifles using Standard Shot or Precision Shot.
Repair Servos
Repair Servos
Repairs up to 50% of damage taken (max 2 per turn). Value on icon represents repairs remaining at 2 points per hp. Additional damage taken before repairs are complete reduces how much can be repaired.
Advanced Fire Control
Advanced Fire Control
Shots from Overwatch no longer suffer any Aim penalty.
No other bonuses. No other bonuses. +2 Aim.
Tech Sergeant
Limited-use small items (including those from perks) receive 1 additional use.
Shock-Absorbent Armor
Shock-Absorbent Armor
Damage received from enemies within 4 tiles is reduced by 33%.
Vital Point Targeting
Vital Point Targeting
Confers 2 bonus damage with primary guns, and +1 damage with sidearms, against humans and alien targets whose species have been autopsied.
No other bonuses. No other bonuses. No other bonuses.
Gunnery Sergeant
Your primary weapon, not including shotguns, does an additional 50% of its base weapon damage to robotic enemies after any damage reduction is assessed.
Damage Control
Damage Control
When this unit takes damage, all further damage will be reduced by 1 or 2 points (1.5 DR) for the next 2 turns.
Collateral Damage
Collateral Damage
Area of effect attack that destroys most cover and hits all eligible targets for 1/3rd damage. Unlike most abilities, damage increasing items and perks also only apply 1/3rd damage (note: HEAT and flak cannot be reduced below +2 damage though). This attack cannot critically hit. Shredder ammo and holo-targeting are NOT applied.
No other bonuses. No other bonuses. No other bonuses.
Master Sergeant
Close Combat Specialist
Close Combat Specialist
Confers a reaction shot against any enemy who closes to within 4 tiles. Does not require Overwatch. Warning: Will activate even if unit is concealed.
Extra Conditioning
Extra Conditioning
Confers 1-4 bonus health based on which type of armor is equipped. Heavier armor increases the bonus.
Rapid Fire
Rapid Fire
Take two shots against a single target in quick succession. Each shot carries a -15 penalty to Aim.
No other bonuses. +1 Mobility, +4 Aim, +4 Will. No other bonuses.

Stat Progression

Rank Health
Specialist 1 1 2 2 2(3) 2(-3)
Lance Corporal 1 2 1 3 2(3) 4(-6)
Corporal 1 3 2 5 2(3) 6(-9)
Sergeant 1 4 1 6 2(3) 8(-12)
Tech Sergeant 1 5 2 8 2(3) 10(-15)
Gunnery Sergeant 1 6 1 9 2(3) 12(-18)
Master Sergeant 1 7 2 11 2(3) 14(-21)
  • Note that, even without Hidden Potential turned on, there is a chance of gaining 1 extra will per level (shown in parentheses above).

Tactical Advice

Intended Role: "Tank"

With the highest HP progession and plethora of defensive perks, the Goliath acts as the frontline bullet sponge for the rest of the team. It is the one unit that you would want to take fire from the heavy hitting alien units. With the Absorption Fields perk as the first perk to be available, The Goliath is able to heavily reduce any damage that it receives.

With perks like Automated Threat Assessment, Extra Conditioning, Shock- Absorbent Armor and Damage Control it becomes slightly more difficult for aliens to severely hurt the MEC and even if they manage to heavily damage it, the Repair Servos perk can give it even more survivability, by making it able to repair itself during longer missions.

The Goliath MEC is the only unit that XCOM has available that can reliably be called a tanking unit, as such it can act as a recon unit for the rest of the team, even though it is hampered by its less than stellar mobility. This is why it is good to use it in conjunction with Scouts and Assaults. Use the Scouts to do recon and the Goliath to have the enemies (hopefully) shoot at it, while the assault can go around for a flank.

Sadly the enemy isn't actually obliged to shoot at the Goliath, making its tanking role somewhat situational as enemy units can forego shooting at the MEC that is standing right in front of them, and instead shoot at a soldier in low cover behind the MEC. In this case, equipping short range, high damage weapons such as Kinetic Strike and/or Flamethrowers can make them regret letting your Goliath run free. You will probably want to strike a balance when building your Goliath between defense and offense/utility, since a purely defensively built Goliath will have little to contribute in the event that the aliens don't decide to attack it. Flush, HEAT Ammo, Collateral Damage and Packmaster are prominent offensive and utility perks. Advanced Fire Control, Close Combat Specialist and Covering Fire can let the Goliath lock down aliens with the threat of overwatch.

It should be noted that even with their high health, damage reducing and self repairing capabilities, a lone Goliath can still die quite easily during the later parts of the campaign. The most serious threats come from Sectoid swarms, which will deal many small hits that bypass absorption fields, and HEAT loaded bosses, which will hit WAY too hard to tank. It is never a good idea to place the Goliath under a full pod's worth of fire without any assistance.

MECs can be healed by Medikits, so in longer missions a Medic should top off the Goliath between enemy pods 1. With some luck an upgraded Arc Thrower can be used to capture Drones, providing an unlimited source of +3 healing that is amazing for extended missions. The Repair utility of an arc thrower can also be used, but is generally not strong enough to use for primary healing. Another good idea is to equip it with HP-boosting items such as an Alloy Carbide Plating or Core Armoring, increasing the health it needs to tank. Skills that reduce enemy aim are never a bad idea, but be careful when boosting the Goliath's defense rating above that of the rest of your squad. Doing so will encourage the alien AI to change targets.

Shock-Absorbent Armor takes the Goliath's tanking potential to a whole new level, but must be used very carefully. If the Goliath flanks a unit on the approach, it will frequently run away from the flank and attack outside of range for full damage. Heavier units like Mechtoids and Cyberdiscs are not pressed to flee, but they are not obligated to stay in range of the damage reduction. Do not place the Goliath in a situation where it NEEDS Shock-Absorbent Armor to survive.

The biggest drawback of the Goliath is its rather narrow usability; it has one role which it does extremely well, but it is not as versatile as other MEC classes. Unless you are going to use it for its specific purpose, you might not want to get a Goliath.

1 If time is willing, wait until AFTER repair servos finishes its effect before healing the Goliath. Healing before then will also consume repair servo charges.

Sample Builds

Mobile Fortress

LCPL: Steadfast

CPL: Automated Threat Assessment

SGT: Repair Servos

TSGT: Shock-Absorbent Armor

GSGT: Damage Control

MSGT: Extra Conditioning

This MEC's function is simple - draw enemy fire and absorb damage, while the rest of your squad deals with the enemy. Put it in a MEC-5 suit to maximize HP (+24) and DR (+2.5), while the Extra Conditioning perk adds another +4 HP. Steadfast will keep your Goliath from panicking and inadvertently causing a panic chain. Equip an Alloy Carbide Plating and a Core Armoring for an additional +6 HP and immunity to critical hits. Don't equip Tactical Sensors or a Battle Computer, as these will raise the Goliath's evasion and may cause your enemies to target other members of your squad. Even though the Goliath's low aim make its primary weapon quite unreliable at mid to long ranges, you can give it a more supportive role by equipping a Holo-Targeter. For secondary weapons consider bringing a grenade launcher or two to destroy enemy cover while in One For All position. A Flamethrower or a Kinetic Strike Module can be useful on close-quarter maps. For a tanky HEAT Ammo MEC build check out the Valkyrie, which has a much better aim progression and some excellent Overwatch perks.

See also

Lone Wolf (EU2012).jpg Long War: Soldiers
Class Infantry (Long War).png
Class Rocketeer (Long War).png
Class Scout (Long War).png
Class Engineer (Long War).png
MEC Troopers
Class Marauder (Long War).png
Class Valkyrie (Long War).png
Class Archer (Long War).png
Class Goliath (Long War).png
Class Jaeger (Long War).png
Class Pathfinder (Long War).png
Class Guardian (Long War).png
Class Shogun (Long War).png
Sub-classes and abilities
Gene Mods Soldier Icon (EU2012).png
Gene Mods