Of course, it doesn’t necessary have to end well, and we’ve seen plenty of movies (District 9, Transformers, and many more) that suggest that.
Thus, it’s important in XCOM to do your research with whatever alien related stuff you find. This essentiality is actually a large part of the development system of the game.
The Research and Engineering of XCOM allows you to develop new weapons, create badass defense armors, attain credits, and much more. But because of the risks, you’re best doing so with a guide to get aid from, and we have exactly that.
Story Related and Utility Research
There a few researches in the game that are story related and/or prerequisites for some of the more rewarding researches.
Unlocks: Foundry facility, Phoenix Cannon, Alien Grenades project
Requirements: 5 weapon fragments
Unlocks: S.C.O.P.E. item (+10 aim), S.C.O.P.E. upgrade project (Foundry)
Requirements: 5 weapon fragments
Unlocks: Nano-Fiber Vest item (+3 HP)
UFO Powered Source
Requirements: 1 salvaged UFO Power Source
Unlocks: Elerium Generator facility
Requirements: 4 Sectoid corpses
Unlocks: Alien Containment facility
Requirements: Xeno-Biology research, 10 weapon fragments
Unlocks: Arc Thrower item (stuns enemy for interrogation)
Requirements: Xeno-Biology research
Unlocks: Skeleton Key (story-related item)
Requirements: 1 salvaged UFO Power Source, 10 Elerium
Unlocks: Improved Arc Thrower project
Alien Nav Computer
Requirements: 2 salvaged UFO flight computer
Unlocks: Satellite Nexus Facility, Stealth Satellites project
Requirements: Alien Nav Computer research, 1 salvaged Hyperwave Beacon, 30 alloys, 30 Elerium
Unlocks: Hyperwave Relay facility
Requirements: 1 salvaged Psi-Link from Ethereal UFO
Unlocks: Gollop Chamber facility
Weapons in XCOM are researched by finding alien weapon fragments during fights. It’s thus essential not to sell them on the Grey Market, and opt to fight all the battles available to attain as many fragments as you can.
In addition to simple fragments, you may need specific materials, such as alloys or other weapons. Some researches have to be carried out before the next ones can as well.
The following are the researches and their rewards.
Note that stats for the unlocked weapons are displayed as: (Base Damage, Critical Chance [%], Critical Damage)
Requirements: 10 weapon fragments, 5 alien alloys
Unlocks: Laser Pistol (2,30%,3), Laser Rifle (5,10%,7), Improved Pistol II
Requirements: Beam Weapons, 5 Weapon Fragments, 5 Alien Alloys
Unlocks: Heavy Laser LMG (6,CC0%,9), Laser Cannon (Interceptor), S.H.I.V. Laser Project
Requirements: Beam Weapons, 5 fragments, 5 alloys
Unlocks: Scatter Laser Shotgun (6,20%,9), Laser Sniper (6,30%,9)
Light Plasma Rifle:
Requirements: Salvaged Light Plasma Rifle, 40 fragments, 10 alloys, 5 Elerium
Unlocks: Light Plasma Rifle (5,10%,CD7)
Requirements: Salvaged Plasma Pistol, 40 fragments, 5 Elerium
Unlocks: Plasma Pistol (3,20%,4), Improved Pistol III Project
Requirements: Salvaged Plasma Rifle, 40 fragments, 10 alloys, 5 Elerium
Unlocks: Plasma Rifle (7,10%,10)
Requirements: Salvaged Heavy Plasma, 40 fragments, 10 alloys, 10 Elerium
Unlocks: Heavy Plasma LMG (9,0%,13), S.H.I.V. Plasma Project
Requirements: Plasma Rifle or Heavy Plasma, 50 fragments, 10 alloys, 10 Elerium
Unlocks: Plasma Sniper Rifle (9,35%,13)
Requirements: Plasma Rifle or Heavy Plasma, 40 fragments, 25 alloys, 5 Elerium
Unlocks: Alloy Cannon Shotgun (9,20%,13)
Guided Fusion Launcher
Requirements: Salvaged Battleship Class UFO Fusion Core, 75 fragments, 20 alloys, 10 Elerium
Unlocks: Blaster Rocket Launcher
Armor researches work in a similar manner to the weapons one. However, instead of weapon fragments, your focus is mainly on general material and lower-grade armors for advanced researches.
Requirement: Salvaged Alien Materials, 10 alien alloys
Unlocks: Carapace Armor (HEALTH +4), Alloy S.H.I.V.
Requirement: Carapace Armor, 15 alloys
Unlocks: Skeleton Suit (HEALTH +3, grapple hook, increased movement)
Requirements: Carapace Armor, 15 alloys, 5 Elerium
Unlocks: Titan Armor (HEALTH +10, poison immunity, flame immunity)
Requirements: Titan Armor, Hyperwave Communication (see “other”), 15 alloys, 15 Elerium
Unlocks: Ghost Armor (HEALTH +6, Ghost Mode ability, grapple hook)
Requirements: Titan Armor, New Fighter Craft (see “other”), 15 alloys, 15 Elerium
Unlocks: Archangel Armor (HEALTH +8, flight mode)
Requirements: Ethereal or Sectoid Commander interrogation, 10 alloys, 10 Elerium
Unlocks: Psi Armor (HEALTH +6, Will increase of 30 for psi attacks and defense)
Interceptors are basically your anti-UFO fighters to keep your satellites safe. As you progress onwards, you’ll fight against tougher UFOs. Thus, it is extremely essential to research and upgrade your Interceptors as soon as you can.