|“||These guys make up the bulk of the ADVENT forces we've dealt with. They're disciplined and well equipped, although their obedience makes them predictable.||”|
–-Central Officer Bradford upon discovering the first Troopers, Operation Gatecrasher
The ADVENT Trooper is an ADVENT enemy encountered in XCOM 2. They serve as the most numerous and weakest of the ADVENT troops, though they are still well-equipped, intelligent, and certainly not a threat to be overlooked.
The ADVENT trooper forms the backbone of ADVENT's military power. Their main function is to police the Earth's human population. However, they may also be assigned to guard key assets alongside other enemy types. Troopers are ostensibly human, clad in sleek, angular body armor. All troopers wear a face-concealing helmet that leaves only the mouth exposed.
ADVENT troopers take the appearance of a heavily armed futuristic foot soldier. Each trooper dons a dark gray body suit with black armor plating. The boots reach up to the knees, each marked with a red light on the knee pads. A pelvic plate covers the trooper's groin, lined with a pair of red lines where the leggings meet the plate, and six gray ammunition packs line their upper legs (three packs on each leg).
Additional ammo packs are attached to the front and back of the trooper's belt, with a buckle consisting of two square notches. Each trooper's breastplate takes the shape of a gray, stereotypical bulletproof vest, decorated with even more ammo packs. A pair of pauldrons guard the shoulders, each marked with a red light. The trooper's forearms are protected with gray bracers and gloves marked with red knuckles.
The most noted feature of the ADVENT troopers is the helmet. The helmet is gray, angular, and covers the trooper's entire head, save for an opening on the front that reveals their mouth. According to Dr. Tygan, the helmet was specifically designed to hide the trooper's upper face, making them appear to be pure human soldiers.
Despite their appearance, ADVENT troopers are not entirely human. Underneath their helmet, troopers are naturally bald, and have ears that fold back instead of protruding as is normal. Their eyes are silvery and lack pupils, similar to the eyes of a Sectoid. While originally theorized that they have been genetically modified to improve their combat ability, the reason for the trooper's alien upper face is due to them being clones made from both human and alien DNA. All troopers are brainwashed to be unerringly loyal to ADVENT. Still, Tygan's originally belief that ADVENT troopers are "recruited" from prisoners and unwitting volunteers, could be possible to a degree. They appear to be both male and female, as in a cutscene, Lilly warns Central to stop a trooper from calling reinforcements, calling the trooper "she".
The ADVENT Troopers' main weapon is the Magnetic Rifle - an automatic Gauss rifle that fires electromagnetically accelerated projectiles. This weapon does a little less damage compared to an XCOM assault rifle for balance reasons, but its damage is upgraded to more realistic levels as troopers upgrade.
In combat, ADVENT soldiers are capable of intelligent movement and strategic engagement. When lead by an ADVENT Officer, they can be a significant threat. Despite their discipline, their strict obedience makes them predictable. For example, they will always obey an ADVENT Officer's focus-fire orders if they are in the vicinity, even if the Officer's orders seem contrary (as Troopers will forgo even a flanking shot to engage a far-off marked target if they can). This indicates that Troopers are very obedient- they follow orders to the absolute letter.
Their most common behavior, when not under orders to perform a certain action, is to simply take aim at an XCOM soldier and shoot; in this regard, they are some of the deadliest early-game ADVENT units, as they do not waste time with needless, flashy special abilities that may or may not work. If they do not have a decent shot, they will attempt to move to a better position, and will take a flanking shot if possible. If they have a poor shot and no decent place to move, they tend to Overwatch. They also tend to perform Overwatch when supporting an allied advance, where they can cut down XCOM units moving through cover positions.
ADVENT troopers frequently fight at medium range; attempting to flank, take cover where applicable, and generally fight as a competent force. On lower difficulties, they are affected (just as any other enemy) by a forced scheme in which they must roll to see if they make a sub-optimal move that turn. Additionally, their initially low health and stats mean that they are frequently killed before they can show off their tactical intelligence. However, on higher difficulties (where it is both more difficult to kill Troopers immediately, and easier for them to return fire) they can become serious threats, capable of blowing XCOM rookies away in just 1-2 shots, and appearing in significant number.
Like all other ADVENT and alien units, ADVENT troopers may call for reinforcements at any time. These reinforcements usually come in the form of other ADVENT units, and are brought into the battlefield by an airborne transport vehicle landing after 1 turn delay. They may use Overwatch, but lack Suppression and grenades initially. Advanced and Elite Troopers use ADVENT grenades, which they will throw at concentrated masses of XCOM soldiers.
Two advanced versions of this unit exist: the Advanced Trooper and Elite Trooper. Each version has more health, does more damage, and packs a grenade that destroys cover and harms every XCOM operative in its blast radius. Advanced Troopers are first deployed in early May (late May on Legend); Elite Troopers deploy in early July (late August on Legend).
- ADVENT Troopers tend to fight at medium to close range. As they lack special abilities for the AI to use, they will mostly either Overwatch or simply shoot at targets; arguably, they are one of the more dangerous ADVENT enemies in the early-game, as they can kill an XCOM Rookie in Kevlar Armor in just two hits.
- Troopers have a quite low HP value; they are relatively easy to kill if one can get a shot on them with basic weaponry. The only stock weapon that has a chance of not killing a standard Trooper is the Pistol. This changes dramatically once the Advanced and Elite variants are deployed; they will suddenly become much more difficult to kill, and will include more advanced weapons with higher damage. Advanced Troopers and Elite Troopers also pack ADVENT grenades.
- ADVENT Troopers sometimes rush the player at close range. Due to the lack of range bonus to the AI in the stock game, this usually ends badly for the trooper in question.
- ADVENT Troopers are significantly more dangerous when coordinated by an Officer; their aim increases at a marked target, and their higher base damage than Enemy Unknown's Sectoid gives them an easier time killing XCOM soldiers early-game.
- ADVENT Troopers, notably, cannot suppress targets; this is a change from Enemy Unknown, in which nearly every enemy could suppress as a default ability. Instead, ADVENT Troopers can use Overwatch to pin down targets.
- ADVENT Troopers are among the forces that can join the XCOM squad if the Double Agent resistance order is active, operating similarly to their hostile counterparts. While not as powerful as the mainstream XCOM forces, they can prove valuable in a support role.
- At 200 points, the ADVENT Trooper is the absolute cheapest unit in the game.
- At only 3 health, ADVENT Troopers usually die to any hit; their advanced variants do not appear in multiplayer.
- They have low damage value; higher level enemies like Andromedons will not feel their attacks very easily, and high-armored enemies such as Gatekeepers may completely tank their attack.
- ADVENT Troopers are disposable scouts and overwatch drawers; however they won't take every single overwatch attack as Enemy Unknown's multiplayer units tended to do. You cannot use the "Sectoid eats 6 overwatch attacks" strategy of EU.
- In an ADVENT-centric squad, they still aren't a good option to fill the squad due to their deficiencies; Shieldbearers, Stun Lancers, and Officers are all superior options.