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For the XCOM: Enemy Unknown (2012) version, see Ethereal (EU2012)
For the version that appears in The Bureau, see Ethereal (Bureau)

In other languages: 한국어, Español.


If it bleeds, we can kill it.

— Arnold Schwarzenegger, Predator.

The Ethereal race is arguably the most dangerous species that X-COM forces faced during the First Alien War.

Ethereals are rarely seen on Earth as they prefer to send other races (especially Mutons) to carry out missions on their behalf.


TUs:               68-79
Health:            55
Energy:            96-111
Reactions:         75-93
Strength:          48-52
Bravery:           80
Firing Accuracy:   37-92
Throwing Accuracy: 80
Psi Skill:         40-46, 45-52, 50-58
Psi Strength:      50-58, 60-70, 65-75 

Special abilities

Ethereals are the race who are most directly in charge of the entire alien invasion. They are terrifying if you are not familiar with them, but still a teeth-grinding pain in the rear if you are.

Every member of the Ethereal race possesses very powerful psionic abilities that can be used to make X-COM forces panic. It is even possible for Ethereals to take control of X-COM units and use them against us. Soldiers with less than probably 80 PSI strength should not be used against them; but assuming you do, Ethereals are essentially flying Space Jesuits with guns. Even without their PSI, however, they're well enough armoured that you won't want to use less than plasma pistols against them, they have much higher firing accuracy than you, they're resistant to incendiaries, and they love sniping.

Terror attacks by Ethereals are the most dangerous for both Civilians and X-COM units - apart from having to deal with their psionic abilities, we also have to fight against Sectopods.

Be aware of the fact that Ethereals can fly, giving them access to just about anywhere on the map. They often use this to set up midair sniping positions, especially on the harder difficulties but not as much for across-the-map movement. Night Missions ARE A PAIN, especially since their night vision is far superior to humans. Plus, flares and incendiaries aren't useful for illuminating empty air.

If an Ethereal is "spotting" for his pals from around level 9 of the map and you can't find him, and his friends are all bombarding you with psi, you will probably have to abort... if you still can.

Despite having powerful psionic abilities, Ethereals are armed and most Ethereals wield Heavy Plasma.

Live specimen

This being has awesome mental powers which allow for telepathic communication and telekinetic abilities.

The apparently weak physical abilities of this creature are sustained by its mental powers. We do not understand how these telekinetic powers work, since they seem to defy the laws of physics as we know them.

They are extremely dangerous in any combat situation, where they rely on their mental powers for combat. They rarely appear on Earth since they seem to rely on other races to pursue their objectives.


Ethereal - Autopsy

This being is physically retarded and seems incapable of sustaining any life functions.

The muscles are severely atrophied and the internal organs appear to be under-developed. The sensory organs, including the eyes, do not appear to function at all.

The brain, however, is well developed and draws on a high proportion of the body's blood supply. It is a mystery as to how this creature can sustain itself without external support.


The following are some miscellaneous notes on the Ethereal:

  • The Ethereal takes 0.7x damage from fire, and 0.8x stun damage.
  • Very high Firing and Throwing Accuracy.
  • Is very fast (very high TUs).
  • High Health.
  • Very high Energy.
  • Very high Reactions.
  • High Strength.
  • Very high Psi Strength.
  • There are no Ethereal Navigators, Engineers, or Medics. Ethereal Leaders will be used in their place.

See also

UFO BadgeX-COM: Enemy Unknown/UFO Defense
X-COM SoldiersHeavy Weapons Platforms
Aliens: FloaterSectoidSnakemanEtherealMuton

Terror Units: ReaperCyberdiscChryssalidZombieSectopodCelatidSilacoid

Stats Time UnitsEnergy (Stamina)HealthBraveryReactionsFiring AccuracyThrowing AccuracyStrengthPsionic StrengthPsionic SkillMelee AccuracyStunMoraleRankFatal Wounds
Data Alien StatsDamage ModifiersAlien Appearance RatiosAlien Weapon Loadouts