Ghost Armor (Armor)

Ghost Armor is an advanced body armor in XCOM: Enemy Unknown.

In-Game DescriptionEdit

By integrating a stealth field based on the phase-shifts observed in the hyperwave beacon, this suit makes it extremely difficult for the wearer to be detected in the field. It should be noted, the stealth system is only effective when used by a soldier in cover.

– Engineering description, XCOM: Enemy Unknown

Production SpecificationsEdit

Prerequisites: Ghost Armor (Research)
Production Time: Immediate
Engineers: 40

Production Cost:

Tactical InfoEdit

▪   Health Bonus: 6
▪   Medium armor
▪   Stealth systems allow wearer to become invisible
▪   Ghost mode can be activated up to 4 times per battle
▪   Activating Ghost Mode does not cost an action, nor end the soldier's turn
▪   Provides a moderate [+20] bonus to Defense, equivalent to partial cover
▪   Wearer's movement speed is increased [+3]
▪   Grappling hook module has been adapted from the Skeleton Suit
– Tactical Info, XCOM: Enemy Unknown

XCOM: Enemy Within amends this with:

▪   Sealed: internal air supply and recycling systems provide the wearer immunity to poison and airway interruption
▪   Flame Resistant: cooling systems and alien alloy construction confer immunity to environmental fire damage
– Tactical Info, XCOM: Enemy Within

Equipment AbilitiesEdit

Ability Description
XEU Ghost  Ghost Mode  A Ghost Armor wearer can activate a special mode that makes him or her invisible to enemies.
Grapple  Grapple  This armor mounts a grappling hook and cable on the left arm, permitting rapid elevation change and access to tactically advantageous positions.


The production of Ghost Armor opens up a wide range of scouting, spotting, and ambush tactics to the player; its main drawback is that it is expensive to craft.

While not as protective as the Titan and Archangel Armor, the Ghost Armor takes all the tactical advantages of the Skeleton Suit and improves upon them. The movement bonus and the grappling hook provide unlimited use (unlike the Archangel Armor's jetpack) and the +20 Defense bonus effectively turns no cover into partial cover, partial into full, and full into full + 1/2 (60 Defense). Then to top everything off the Ghost Armor has the incredibly useful Ghost ability.

The Ghost ability can be activated up to 4 times per battle; activating Ghost does not cost an action nor end the turn. The Ghost ability's invisibility effectively renders the soldier immune to attack if active during the enemy turn; alternatively, firing while stealthed confers a 100% (reduced to 30% in XCOM: Enemy Within) Critical Chance (unless reduced by a trait similar to Hardened) but will reveal wearer. Note that using Ghost along with Rapid Fire will confer the Crit Chance bonus for both shots.

Ghost Armor can serve many different purposes and is even better than it sounds: if a soldier encounters new enemies while stealthed, then ends the turn right next to them, they will NOT respond to the soldier's presence when revealed at the beginning of the next turn (at least until the soldier moves or shoots them).

Spotting for a player's Squadsight Sniper(s) becomes incredibly easy. A team of four ghosted units and two Snipers can clear most maps without giving the aliens a single chance to fire. The same goes for the final boss who can be sniped all the way from the door.

However, note that Close Combat Specialist trigger will break an Assault unit's cloak whether the player wishes it or not. Although this quasi-tactic can be exploited for benefit.

Soldiers can also ambush the enemy by sneaking behind them and attacking. The enemy will most likely take cover, exposing their backs to the rest of the squad, who can finish them off in the same turn. Therefore, do not shoot with ghosted units the moment they spot the enemy - this will push them away. Instead try going behind them and pushing them towards the rest of the team.

Close-range rush to capture an enemy also becomes infinitely easier: the designated Arc Thrower user can cloak and move into spitting range of the enemy while their squadmates reduce said enemy to low health, not get shot by their target at very short range, and then either successfully stun them during the next move, or have them wiped out by other squadmates if unsuccessful.

Although Ghost Armor is usually associated with the Assault Class, the Heavy Class needs it more urgently. Heavies can use it to get into position quickly and safely, and will no longer fall behind in movement speed and kill count. Snipers, however, can use the grappling hook and stealth system to get into optimal firing positions whilst being undetectable and gain the added critical chance bonus for being stealthed. For Squadsight Snipers on outdoor maps, consider Archangel Armor instead, as it allows them to create their own "nests" instead of seeking out the (few and far between) natural positions, and they rarely need the invisibility feature.

Ghosting is a great way to hit multiple enemies with explosives. Cloak and then rush towards the enemy who are usually huddled close together. Since the soldier is cloaked, the enemy will not 'trigger' and they will not move. This works especially well with Heavy Soldiers since ghosting allows them to get within range with ease.

On time sensitive missions (e.g. Terror Site, Bomb Disposal, and when looking for Meld Canisters) the player can have one of their units (preferably a fast unit like a Support soldier with the Sprinter ability) ghost and then rush blindly ahead without having to worry about cover. As long as the soldier is not put on Overwatch or equipped with the Close Combat Specialist ability, there is no way the enemy can target that unit. This advancing unit will reveal enemies and items on the map.

While ghosting, using a Medikit on a companion will not uncloak the soldier, very useful to reach a critically wounded ally.

Although Ghost Mode prevents aliens and EXALT troops from detecting a soldier, civilians to be rescued during Terror and Council missions are unaffected, and will fully respond to being 'tagged' for rescue as per normal without requiring the soldier to reveal themselves.

There is the issue of decloaking. The suit automatically decloaks either when firing (either manual or Overwatch), using items, Psi Abilities, or at the end of the round, but otherwise remains cloaked throughout the round (note the differentiation between round and turn, one round consists of one player turn and one opposition turn). At the end of the round the suit decloaks anyway, the visual light bending effect will cease, the cloak sound effect will play, you'll even get a tactical debuff message/bubble floating off the user, but BE WARNED, the camera will not always jump to that particular armor user for reference unlike for example Overwatch! This is perhaps a bug, because the automated camera attention is directed elsewhere.

XCOM: Enemy WithinEdit

  • The 100% Critical Chance bonus for invisibility (either from Ghost Armor, a Ghost Grenade or Mimetic Skin) is reduced to 30%. This does not seem to stack with HEAT Ammo [(Reaper Rounds?)].[citation needed]
  • The Mimetic Skin Gene Mod is a much more cost-effective way to gain access to cloaking without requiring the use of Ghost Armor, with unlimited charges, and without any 1-turn timer (so a cloaked unit that stands still can stay cloaked indefinitely). As a result, Ghost Armor is less useful.
    • The patch released in February 2014 significantly increases the Meld and Credit cost of Mimetic Skin, potentially renewing the usefulness of Ghost Armor when XCOM's Meld supplies are low.
    • In addition Mimetic Skin requires the use of Full Cover for invisibility to be attained. Ghost Armor does not, and given its far shorter manufacturing time and the fact it does not need Meld, the armor is sometimes more efficient and a better choice than waiting three days and spending Credits and Meld.
  • Ghost Mode cannot be activated if the soldier wearing it has Mimetic Skin. However, the soldier can still benefit from the movement and Defenses bonuses, as well as the grappling hook.

Pros and Cons Edit

Class-based differentiation collected into one place.

Assault Soldier Edit

  • CON - Scouting while ghosted can defeat the purpose of also keeping the possibility open to assault a hostile with range closing and firing main weapon, or one is always simply just an extra objective for the other to keep in mind. This can (subjectively) over strain the duties of this class.
  • CON - Close Combat Specialist decloaks the user. While this is not a tragedy, it needs to be taken into planning.
  • CON - Lightning Reflexes is wasted if cloaked, and may be preferable to cloaking to burn enemies overwatch.
  • CON - This armor does not fall into Heavy Armor classification for Extra Conditioning to take maximum effect.
  • CON - Having the Grappling Hook is probably least useful for a Shotgun wielding soldier. (Unless of course when the hostile using a ranged weapon is shooting from a high ground cover.)
  • PRO - Rapid Fire has both of its shots enhanced with a decloaking buff.
  • PRO - Ghosting allows Close and Personal ability to be taken advantage of rather often enabling greater damage output from Assault
  • PRO - Armor Defense bonus attribute can stack with Tactical Sense.
  • PRO - Run & Gun allows cloaked Overwatch after dashing. Decloaking buff comes into play.
  • PRO - Decloaking buff applies to Flush making it less weakened.
  • PRO - Bring 'Em On can stack with decloaking buff.
  • PRO - Killer Instinct significantly stacks with decloaking buff.
  • PRO - Movement bonus complements the far reach of an offensive operation.

Heavy Soldier Edit

  • CON - Decloaking does not seem to apply bonus damage to area of effect weapons like Rockets and Grenades. This also makes the Grenadier ability useless in the perspective of this armor. [Ciatation needed...]
  • CON - Unlike Mimetic Skin, Ghost Armor ghosting does not require the use of cover, this enables placing the soldier at locations where there is no cover and still being cloaked (until decloaked) which in turn disrupts tactics with Will to Survive.
  • PRO - Like written above, with Ghost Armor a soldier does not require cover to cloak, albeit does it only for a round and can only 4 times. This finite quantity however rarely seems to be an issue.
  • PRO - Being a heavy damage dealer at crucial times makes cloaked positioning really useful.
  • PRO - With Bullet Swarm, can cloak after the first shot.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus stacks with HEAT Ammo.[citation needed]
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus applies to both shots of Rapid Reaction.
  • PRO - The movement bonus is a great addition to placing the heavy soldier into strategically needed spots, especially considering his rather low class aim stats.
  • PRO - Grappling Hook enables soldier to gain high ground in frontline assault.
  • PRO - A character cannot ghost while having Mimetic Skin, thus soldiers not using Mimetic Skin need to use Bioelectric Skin, which is only recommended for one soldier in a squad, in turn Ghost Armor easily decides that its user is the one who should be using Bioelectric Skin in the squad. (However you should use an individual for this which will always be planned as the only one with Ghost Armor in the squad on a mission.)

Support Soldier Edit

  • CON - By not being so much a frontline soldier as the Assault or Heavy, has less need for scouting invisibility in front or decloaking at a tactical location in a firefight. Additionally, if used for Suppression, and having Smoke Grenades, the Support is likely too active to stay cloaked.
  • CON - Throwing a Smoke Grenade while not an offensive action, still decloaks the user.
  • CON - Deep Pockets further distances the Support from useful cloaking with the class' activity level.
  • PRO - Ghosting helps medic-themed rescues, and works fantastic with Medikits, Field Medic, Revive, Saviour, and marginally Deep Pockets.
  • PRO - The movement bonus stacks with Sprinter, and further helps medic operations. Also any other involvement.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with Covering Fire. This might help perhaps kill an attacker before he actually manages to fire.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with both shots of Sentinel. This is the most frequent way a Support soldier can deal additional damage. (Not including the rival Mimetic Skin.)
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus and Combat Drugs both are suitable for better combat performance catalysts.
  • PRO - Defense bonus stacks with Smoke Grenade, Smoke and Mirrors, and Dense Smoke.
  • PRO - support's speed boost means he can cover the most distance at one time. When a mission requires getting somewhere fast, such as to rescue civilians/covert operatives or collect Meld, a support is the best choice to get there and cloak can keep them safe while doing it.

Sniper Soldier Edit

  • CON - Snipers who prefer to stay back out of harm's way have little use for cloaking. This is most often the case with snipers who choose Squadsight.
  • CON - A Sniper using Low Profile and Mimetic Skin can turn invisible infinitely without using Ghost Armor.
  • CON - If not taking the HP difference into consideration, a Sniper using a Skeleton Suit also has a Grappling Hook before obtaining better armor. So there is no need for Ghost Armor.
  • CON - Having a Battle Scanner and ghosting together might be considered redundant for a soldier.
  • PRO - Movement bonus and Grappling Hook may complement Snap Shot.
  • PRO - Grappling Hook may help to initiate Damn Good Ground when possible.
  • PRO - When not at extreme ranges, the decloaking damage buff is a needed bonus when on Overwatch with a Pistol.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with Headshot. This has significant results.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with Gunslinger. A close range buff which it might need.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with Disabling Shot. Although this might do more than the desired damage when capturing live specimen.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with Executioner.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with Opportunist.
  • PRO - Decloaking damage bonus works with Double Tap.[citation needed]


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