Concealment is a game mechanic in XCOM 2, which allows for stealth gameplay in missions.
Certain missions in XCOM 2's tactical layer will begin with all members of the squad in the concealment phase. While concealed, XCOM soldiers can freely spot and encounter enemy units without triggering aggression, allowing for more freedom of movement without fear of activating an enemy squad. If concealment is broken however, every member of the squad becomes revealed, and enemies will automatically engage XCOM soldiers from that point onward.
Concealment is broken upon one of the following conditions being met:
- Every enemy unit and non-friendly civilians in the map have a detection radius indicated by red tiles marked with an exclamation point, and entering these tiles during movement will break concealment. The detection radius moves with the enemy units, and an allied soldier may be revealed if the detection radius moves to cover the square they are currently on.
- Concealment can be retained however if the soldier is behind at least low cover, and is not flanked by the enemy unit from which the detection radius originates.
- Breaking windows and kicking down doors will break concealment.
- Initiating an attack, using most abilities abilities, or using most utility items on an enemy soldier will break concealment.
- There are a small number of items that will not break concealment when used; these include the Medkit, the Proximity Mine, the Battle Scanner.
- There are also a small number of abilities soldiers can use that will not break concealment, including:
- The Ranger's Conceal, Run and Gun and Reaper skills;
- The Sharpshooter's Kill Zone and Serial skills;
- The Specialist's Medical Protocol, Revival Protocol, Haywire Protocol, Scanning Protocol, Threat Assessment, Ever Vigilant, Guardian and Restoration;
- The Psi Operative's Stasis Shield and Inspire.
- Do note that in most of the examples given (such as the Ranger's Run and Gun ability) merely activating the ability will not break concealment. Actually utilizing the ability is what will break it.
- Certain mission objectives may break concealment upon completion.
While the majority of missions begin with the squad in concealment, certain missions like Retaliation and V.I.P. Rescue missions may not, preventing concealment from being employed.
Soldiers are normally unable to re-enter concealment once broken. The only exceptions to this is the Ranger classes conceal perk which allows reentering concealment, as well as succeeding in acquiring certain bonuses while hacking.
- Successful hacking of a mission objective (e.g. workstation) does not break concealment.
- Successful hacking by itself does not break concealment.
- However, successfully hacked targets will break concealment if spotted by nearby enemies.
- It is important to note that the Specialist's Haywire Protocol will break concealment if a robotic target is gained control of but is around other enemy units. In becoming a controllable unit, they will be considered to be inside the detection radius of their former allies, and thus will break concealment for the whole squad.
- Overwatch attacks taken from concealment, including ambushes are not subject to the normal overwatch aim penalty.