Firaxis took the holidays off, so there's not much news on the XCOM 2 front. Thirty-seven more days until the game releases.
I took some time to watch through a few more of the (numerous) videos that were released in early December, and noticed a handful of new details. Nothing major, but a few things worth noting.
This video from Arekkz Gaming explores the soldier customization a bit more than most of the others do. Apparently, he was also told that while the initial selection of customizations is relatively limited, each additional rank that a soldier gains will unlock additional customizations. More customization options will also be available through the official DLC packs, and customization options will likely be a popular subject for mods once the modkit comes out.
Beaglerush (best known for his Iron Man Impossible livestreams for the first XCOM) is also one of the few folks to play through one of the demo missions on "Legendary" difficulty mode. He actually makes it look pretty easy, though it's worth keeping in mind that he's exceptionally good at the previous game and that the devs are still finalizing the difficulty settings. This is a prerelease build, so things will likely change at least a bit before the final release.
The biggest thing about this video is that it seems to be the first one where a Sectoid actually shows up (showcasing some of his new psionic abilities). This video also very heavily implies that higher difficulty settings will provide better loot drops, because BR manages to acquire some significantly more powerful loot drops this time around (compared to the loot drops he acquired in his "normal" difficulty run).
A pretty notable bug also crops up about halfway through his video, and at one point he reloads a quick save and it apparently causes two enemies to "teleport" to a new position. Again, this is a prerelease build, so the issues may already be addressed by the time the game officially releases.
EDIT - In tangentially related news, the folks over at Goldhawk are still talking about moving forward with development on Xenonauts 2. Xenonauts was an homage to the original X-Com, and seems to have been fairly well received (for a small-budget indie title). Current chatter is that they're working on their own in-house engine (a modified version of Unity) specifically geared for use in tile-based strategy games.
Xenonauts 2 is more likely to be a revised and expanded version of the first Xenonauts, rather than a full-fledged sequel or prequel. This official thread over at the Goldhawk forums discusses their various thoughts on what they might change in Xenonauts 2, and is also very careful to note that even if they move forward with the project, it's a title that would release in 2017 at the earliest (ie, it's not trying to directly compete with XCOM 2).
http://www.goldhawkinteractive.com/foru ... s-2-Update
EDIT x2 - A very minor new reveal. Since there was some confusion about what the "Soldier of the Old War" part of the Resistance pre-order bonus pack was, apparently some Devs spoke up about it. It does not actually grant you an extra soldier or special character. Instead, it grants you access to some custom costume pieces based on the XCOM uniform from the first game, so you can make one or more of your soldiers look like old-school XCOM vets.
EDIT x3 (01-06-2016) - A short new article is up on IGN, showcasing another new type of enemy, the Gatekeeper. This is the fourteenth enemy type that has been revealed thus far, but given that the XCOM 2 devs have stated that there are over thirty enemy types in the new game, we haven't even seen over half of them yet.
http://www.ign.com/articles/2016/01/07/ ... -in-action
There is also a short article on the official XCOM website showcasing a new map environment - City Slums:
https://xcom.com/news/en-the-environmen ... om-2-slums
I'm also hearing that there will be a new Liveplay from Firaxis tomorrow (Thursday, 01-07-2016) at 2pm EST on Twitch. I don't have any official announcements to link to, but I've heard it repeated a few times over on some of the other discussion forums.
EDIT x4 (01-07-2016) - An extensive overview has been released, showcasing the "secret" fifth soldier class. It is now confirmed that the secret class is the Psi-Operative
. ChristopherOdd has released an overview of the class that showcases all of the new class abilities, as well as how the class functions differently from the other four classes.
The NDA for the XCOM 2 press demo has now been lifted, so online journalists are now releasing massive amounts of new information about XCOM 2. There's a sudden deluge of new information, but thus far the best synopsis I have seen is this hour-long video from TotalBiscuit. He is careful to avoid any major plot spoilers, but does discuss the backstory and strategic layers of the game rather exhaustively, including revealing several new details about the Geoscape and Base Management aspects.
EDIT x5 (01-08-2016) - Two more enemies revealed: the newly refined Sectopod, and the even deadlier new Outsider. While I don't have any pictures of the new Outsider (sorry!), I do have a couple of shots of the sleek new Sectopod.
https://cdn2.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/UWRkU0 ... od_1.0.jpg
That brings the total number of different enemy types up to an impressive 17. That's the same number of enemies that were included in XCOM:EW. And, according to the devs, there are still over a dozen additional enemies that they haven't even shown us yet.