Research Trees

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Here are sequences of research topics needed to unlock all the technologies in the game.

Laser Weapons

Laser Weapons  (tech breakthrough)
Laser Pistol
Laser Rifle
Heavy Laser       
Laser Cannon 
(Laser Tank)
Laser Defence

Plasma Weapons

    Heavy Plasma               Plasma Rifle 
         |    Heavy Plasma Clip   |  Plasma Rifle Clip  
         |___________|            |__________|
                 |                       |
                 |                       |
                       Plasma Beam
                      Plasma Defence

* New Fighter Craft must also be researched before you can build hovertanks

Fusion Weapons

 Blaster Launcher    Blaster Bomb
               Fusion Ball
          Fusion Ball Defence

* New Fighter Craft must also be researched before you can build hovertanks.


      Alien Alloys
Elerium-115  Personal Armor  UFO Power Source      
     Power Suit      UFO Navigation  
              Flying Suit 


Alien    Elerium        UFO            UFO
Alloys      115     Power Source   Navigation
   UFO Construction
   New Fighter Craft*
New Fighter-Transporter
 |                      |
Grav Shield     Ultimate Craft (Avenger)

* New Fighter Craft must be researched before you can build hovertanks


Any Live Psionic Alien
Psi Lab
  |       |
Psi-Amp Mind Shield

Hyper-Wave Decoder

Any Live Alien Navigator
Hyper-wave Decoder


These research topics must be completed in order to travel to Cydonia and finish the game.

Any Live Alien
Alien Origins
 | Any Live Alien Leader
 | /
The Martian Solution 
 | Any Live Alien Commander
 | /
Cydonia or Bust
 | Avenger
 | /
Cydonia (mission)

Alien Commanders can be found on Battleships, or in alien bases. An alien Commander will also always accompany a base invasion force. The Unofficial Strategy Guide incorrectly states that only a Commander from an alien base can be used to give access to "Cydonia or Bust". In practice, any Commander will do -- so long as The Martian Solution has already been researched. Should you research a Commander prior to this, you'll have to capture another.

Individual topics

Researching these topics will not unlock any technologies beyond themselves.

There are also four UFO Components which can be researched but which have no practical value:

A fifth component, Alien Reproduction, cannot normally be found in the game, although it can be researched if you add it to your General Stores using a game editor.

Research Tree

UFO:EU Research Tree

See Also

Research (TFTD)

UFO Badge X-COM: Enemy Unknown/UFO Defense
Research:BasicsPopular Sequences and TipsTreesLive AliensTechnical Details