XCOM Barracks is a community project to help players share character pools in XCOM 2

XCOM barracks

Yes, we’re having a bit of an XCOM 2 day at PCGN HQ, but not just because it’s out today and everyone’s very excited – the community is also up to some fantastic stuff in the lead-up. Perhaps their biggest project yet is XCOM Barracks, a Steam-linked online database and interface for creating, sharing and downloading custom characters for XCOM 2. It includes headshots, pictures, descriptions, backstories as well as the actual character files themselves. It entered a beta phase yesterday in anticipation of being fully ready for this weekend.

More interested in just the base game? Here’s Jeremy’s XCOM 2 review.

I first saw the concept pitched a few weeks ago on Reddit, and since then poster lonely_jaguar has been hard at work trying to get the system ready for release. The website is now up and you can apply to be a beta tester simply by signing in with Steam and then filling out a short form. It only asks for some contact info to let you know when you’re accepted, and Steam/Reddit usernames to get access to the project and its discussion forum. They’re currently manually approving submissions, so it might be a bit of time before you can get in and start trying to break things.

This library of screenshots show what it will look like once you get in and how pages are formatted. It’s such a great, relatively simple idea I’m surprised Firaxis haven’t got their own version of it already up and running. There’s been a few games that have done very well out of releasing their customisation tools and a platform to upload them on pre-release as a sort of teaser – though it would have been a lot of effort to extract XCOM 2’s from the main game and release it seperately. Hopefully 2K and Firaxis give this project some support when it inevitably takes off.

More info and some extra instructions over in the Reddit post. Jeremy tried his hand at creating some XCOM 2 custom characters with mixed, sometimes horrifying results. We’ll see if we can pry them for his cruel grasp and release them to the wild soon.

While we’re on community creations, here’s a parting gift of the best video I’ve seen so far: