Mission Control (EU2012)

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Mission Control is the facility at Headquarters where XCOM: Enemy Unknown's Hologlobe is located. The Hologlobe (a.k.a. Geoscape in the original game) is the 3D real-time representation of the Earth (and Moon) used by the XCOM Commander to send aircraft and soldiers on missions and to track the evolution of the fight against the current alien invasion.

Geoscape on Mission Control - Hologram view

Using the Hologlobe the XCOM commander can Scan for Activity and/or wait for upcoming Research or Engineering reports. The Geoscape will also show unexpected events such as detected UFOs, alien attacks in progress or Council missions. The world view will also display any missions in progress, such as air interceptions and your Skyranger transport craft either on their way or returning from ground combat missions.

The Mission Control facility is run by Officer Bradford, call sign Central, an NPC character that will notify the XCOM commander of the arrival of any upcoming reports or events, as well as advising him/her on any mission matters.


The Hologlobe is where the game is advanced until new events occur. Enemy Unknown is played in real time, although it's rare for events to occur during while taking decisions at Headquarters, so base management and other actions may be done at leisure. But all non-trivial actions, such as planes flying to their destination, completion of projects, waiting for new recruits to arrive, etc., take time to accomplish and this time must be waited out on Mission Control.

The Hologlobe is accessed whenever any mission is launched, either through the Mission Control or the Situation Room of Headquarters. The Situation Room will also help to track XCOM's Finances and campaign objectives, and will present a 2D Earth image to help the XCOM Commander visualize other important strategic aspects such as funding and Satellite and Interceptor coverage.

The view of the Earth-Moon system is presented in a 3D format which allows to zooming in specific locations and that will also display icons for current XCOM and alien activity. The map is continuously updated as the SCAN FOR ACTIVITY button is pressed/clicked to speed up time, showing dynamic physical events like day/night transition, etc. The view can be toggled between the Hologram and the Normal displays using the globe button.

The Hologlobe also displays:

  • The game's Date and Time
  • 3D icons representing aircraft, UFOs, panic levels and other information;
  • A list of current MISSONS
  • Buttons to toggle the view or return to the base view.

To assign XCOM craft to those missions the player merely needs to click and select them. When XCOM craft are sent on missions the SCAN FOR ACTIVITY button is disabled until the mission is completed and the aircraft returns to XCOM's HQ.

Argentina signs a pact with the aliens while panic in Brazil increases

Hologlobe Icons

Skyranger approaches a Terror Site in Argentina

A number of 3D icons will be displayed by the view, depending on the view:

  • The location XCOM HQ
  • XCOM craft to their way or returning from on missions
  • Council countries will be outlined and their color will show their Panic levels
  • XCOM Satellites or Interceptors deployed to protect countries will also be displayed
  • Countries who signed pacts with the aliens are marked with a 'red vortex'
  • Airborne UFOs
  • Landed or Crashed UFOs
  • Terror Sites
  • Alien Abductions
  • Council Missions

Upcoming Events

The right side of the Hologlobe will list the number of days remaining until projects are completed or other any other upcoming events. Upon reaching the specified date the player will be informed of the event's results by the relevant XCOM department. Upcoming events are those created by the player.

List of scheduled events

Alien Events Frequency

The majority of missions and other Council events are created by the game's A.I. and will appear without previous warning. The AI will check and update the strategic situation every each half hour of game time, and generate alien missions according to its planning and to the Storyline progression. On the Enemy Within DLC the A.I. will also plan and conduct EXALT operations.

For specific details on how the AI generates missions, see:

Launch Mission

XCOM faces a tough decision on Mendoza

After a mission is generated, it can be of two types.

Ground Missions

Any available ground missions will be displayed at the top of the Hologlobe. Clicking on any mission will show the country and type of mission, along with its difficulty level and any additional rewards (credits, soldiers, scientists, engineers) offered for completing the mission. If the option 'Launch' is selected then the player will be brought to the Hangar where he/she will be able to select and choose the ground squad.

UFO about to be intercepted after being detected by XCOM's satellite network

Air Combat

Air combat between XCOM's Interceptors and the UFOs happens when XCOM's Satellite network detects an incoming alien craft and a fighter craft is sent to engage it. The following air combat can occur on any of these circumstances:

  1. To protect XCOM's satellite coverage - UFOs can be sent on a retaliatory missions to shoot down XCOM's satellites over a specific country. If it is not intercepted the satellite will be destroyed, losing any detection coverage over that country (and also funding).
  2. To interdict alien actions - To prevent the UFO from completing its mission.
  3. To recover their technology - For later recovery of invaluable Alien Artifacts at the UFO Crash Site.

Whenever air interception occurs the game will open an window for the resulting Air Combat.


The Hologlobe also displays the 16 Council countries which directly contribute to XCOM and thus in turn need to be protected. Each nation provides resources which may be increased by deploying satellites above that particular country and exhibits a panic level between 1 and 5 (5 being the worst). These countries, their satellite coverage and associated panic levels can be seen in the Situation Room and are listed here, divided by geographic areas:

Council's Countries and Continent
Africa Asia Europe North America South America
  • Egypt
  • South Africa
  • Nigeria
  • China
  • Japan
  • India
  • Australia
  • United Kingdom
  • Russia
  • France
  • Germany
  • United States
  • Canada
  • Mexico
  • Argentina
  • Brazil

In addition to the countries of the Council there are other nations appearing during the game. However, their overall impact in the game is limited to recruiting soldiers from those nationalities.

Additional nations
Asia Europe South America
  • South Korea
  • Indonesia
  • Pakistan
  • Iran
  • Israel
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Italy
  • Turkey
  • Spain
  • Portugal
  • Greece
  • Ukraine
  • Sweden
  • Belgium
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Scotland
  • Ireland
  • Colombia
  • Venezuela


  • EXALT's headquarters has its own version of the Hologlobe, which can be seen during the Base Raid on their facility and will be noticed by Dr. Shen, who will point out the similarity between both Hologlobes during the mission.
  • In the original game, the Hologlobe is called Geoscape. The name "Geoscape" is also used in the save files.

See Also

EU2012 Badge XCOM: Enemy Unknown (2012): Base Facilities
Headquarters:Mission ControlHangarEngineeringResearchBarracksSituation Room
Power:Power GeneratorThermo Power GeneratorElerium Generator
Story:Hyperwave RelayGollop Chamber
R&D:FoundryOfficer Training SchoolPsionic LabAlien Containment
Other:Satellite UplinkSatellite NexusLaboratoryWorkshopAccess Lift
EW DLC:Genetics LabCybernetics Lab
Strategic:Building Optimization