Psionics (Apocalypse)

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X-Com agents use their latent psionic powers to attack an enemy with their mind.


  • A naturally gifted unit can use a Mind Bender to telepathically manipulate any unit on the battlescape. The victim cannot be injured or killed outright but can be anally probed, stunned, demoralised, or mind-controlled.
  • An agent who has been trained in a Psi-Gym will become adept in the use of psionic projections.

Psi Attributes

An agent has three psionic traits that govern their ability to either project or to resist 'mind games'.

Psi Energy

Agent's psionic energy available to project onto a victim. Slowly recharges.

Psi Attack

Agent's aptitude of performing the particular choice of psionic projection.

Psi Defence

The agent's ability to resist psionic manipulation.

Agents For Hire

Humans: All have very low psionic attributes and need maximum training to perform even the easiest of psionic projections.(Probe Unit). It is not worth the time, cost, or effort.
Hybrids: Sectoid-Human hybrids are best suited for improvement due to their high base-level psionic attributes. To have the best Psi-Troops, hybrids available for hire should be selected for the best natural psionic ability levels, since Psi-Gym training will triple the base values. Psi Attack and Psi Energy are together used for psionic manipulation. Both should be high since strong Psi Attack is useless unless your have the energy to use it, and Psi Energy will be depleted without effect if Psi Attack is weak (gives low percentages).
Androids: Cannot use psionics which also makes them immune to any projections.

Psionic Improvement

An agent's ability to perform psionic projections is very weak even for hybrids. Abilities will become much more powerful and with a greater chance of success when a suitable agent is trained to completion.

  • Psionics ability is trained inside the base facility: Psi-Gym.
  • The training of attributes will cease when the original psionic-skill-set values have tripled.

Psionic Targets

To avoid X-Com agents being the subject of mind games, kill the psionic unit.

  • An X-Com agent may cancel their own projection manually.
  • Any unit to be manipulated must be directly visible to the agent who will be performing the projection.
  • If Psi Energy is depleted, any active projections will immediately fail.
  • Purposely allowing an X-Com unit to be panicked or stunned will keep the psi-attacker 'connected' with this agent. The hostile will expend their Psi Energy with only minor overall combat effect.
  • Any unit under hostile mind control will pick up weapons/grenades to use against your troops and if none are near, may use a stun grapple instead.
  • Manipulated X-Com agents can be targeted by other X-Com agents to remove a threat (eg: stun a panicking unit who is equipped with a dangerous weapon).
  • Any agent which has been mind controlled by the aliens should be immediately targeted by X-Com for mind control to 'return' the agent. The target unit is usually mind controlled again since they are visible to the hostile projector. Hide this Psi Defense weak agent if your own hybrids are depleted of Psi Energy or use a stun effect to temporarily remove the threat.
  • A flying agent under attack by "Stun" should immediately land before the effect is successful.
  • The percentage chance to succeed is best when above 75% otherwise energy levels may be needlessly depleted until slowly recharged for another try.
  • Projections will not work on entites that are immune or those which have naturally strong psionic resistance. The easiest function of a mind bender projection: Probe Unit, may have little chance to succeed on resistant entities and other projection choices available on the mind bender will mostly fail when attempted.
  • A "Control Unit" (mind control) projection either works or doesn't. When successful, the effect will only cease when the psionic unit has depleted their Psi Energy, either is killed, or the subject under control is mind controlled by someone else.
  • Projections can be used with a good chance of success by a skilled hybrid on any unit that carries a weapon: humans, anthropods and skeletoids since their psionic resistance is naturally low.
  • Brainsucked hybrid agents are capable of using their mind bender against your troops.

A mind-controlled unit can be used to go anywhere and scout areas and does not need to be constantly visible to the projector.

Psionics Against Neutrals

Police can be best targeted for mind manipulation when performing a raid since these units have the lowest (randomised) Psi Defense of all security.
Any mind-controlled entity is classed as an X-Com unit. If you place that entity into a very dangerous situation then cease the mind-control, it is of no concern to X-Com why that unit decided to detonate a grenade at their feet or jump off from a very high roof.
Any mind contolled unit sitting in a fire injured while under mind control, this is viewed as an X-Com agent being hurt, however, if the mind-controlled unit is killed, it is classed as friendly fire and not direct enemy action. If the majority are killed off, others on the map may start to panic.

Psionics And You

  • Only 'weapon carriers' should be attacked with psionics. Others are strongly resistant.
  • Hire hybrids that have a higher than average psionic skill set and assign them to Psi Gym training immediately. When capable, they can psionically assist is battle and gain combat experience if using a weapon (preferabily a light-weight pistol).
  • If possible, some hybrids can do combat training and some learn in the psi gym, swapping them over occasionally (eg: every four weeks). Accuracy training proceeds faster if they can shoot and hit something on the battlescape.
  • Mind controlled entities should be convinced to throw their weapons away to somewhere out of reach, drop primed grenades at their feet, play 'catch' with a live proximity mine with their old friends, see how far they can jump fly when up high on a roof, run into stun-gas clouds, go play in a fire, and go find other hostiles to show X-Com how many friends they have.

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See Also