XCOM 2 will introduce you, the Commander, to a cast of characters throughout its narrative. While operating aboard the Avenger, XCOM’s mobile base of operations in XCOM 2, the Commander will need to work with Dr. Tygan, Chief Shen and, once again, Central Officer Bradford.
An-Yi “Lily” Shen
Even though An-Yi "Lily" Shen serves as Chief Engineer for XCOM, her ties to Earth's supreme defense force started at a much younger age. She moved to California from Taiwan when she was in grade school, all under the guise of her father accepting an academic position at Cal Tech. This turned out to be a cover story, as her father secretly accepted the position of director for XCOM's entire engineering division.
When the aliens attacked, Shen was only 15 years old. She said goodbye to her father as he departed for XCOM HQ, and would not see him again until XCOM lost the first war. After surviving the initial conflict, the two stayed away from the cities and tried their best to avoid ADVENT while she completed her education. It was exceptionally difficult for Shen when her father passed away, especially since he had yet to complete his life's work: defeating the alien invaders once and for all.
Chief Shen is a results-oriented individual who rarely shies away from conflict and finds it impossible to be complacent; a moment not spent working with her hands is a moment wasted. At the beginning of XCOM 2, she has yet to meet the Commander, but after hearing your praise from trusted allies over the last 20 years, is ready to trust that XCOM is in the right hands.
Dr. Richard Tygan
We've all made mistakes, Commander, but nobody feels they have more to make up for than Dr. Richard Tygan, XCOM's Chief Scientist.
Prior to the alien invasion, Dr. Tygan was a biochemist in Earth's lucrative pharmaceutical industry. Once the aliens conquered Earth and toppled all governments, Tygan didn't know what he should do. As the ADVENT administration was established and new cities were erected around the globe, Tygan's curiosity provided him a new purpose: he would seek access to ADVENT. He was then quickly identified for his skills and employed within ADVENT's ranks.
Tygan led one of the earliest Gene Therapy clinics for ADVENT and was impressed with the medical advancements the administration provided. Though Tygan was initially satisfied in his work, as time went on he found himself quite troubled with how ADVENT had applied his efforts. He saw increased control exerted over the human populace and, upon hearing of a growing resistance movement, decided to flee the city and seek out XCOM.
Dr. Tygan is self-assured and confident in his own knowledge and expertise. He can be a bit patronizing at times to those who aren't able to keep up; however, he has the utmost respect for you, Commander.
Central Officer Bradford
You should be familiar with Central, Commander. After narrowly escaping the assault on XCOM HQ during the first war with the alien invaders, Bradford was one of the few XCOM personnel left. He found himself alone and without support – and sought sanctuary among those living on the periphery. He spent many years moving from one place to the next, avoiding ADVENT at all costs.
As ADVENT’s propaganda proved successful and the administration swayed much of the human populace to move towards the cities, Bradford was deeply troubled by how quickly humanity forgot about the efforts of XCOM. These were the darkest times for Central. To no avail, he found himself continually seeking comfort at the bottom of a bottle.
It took a tip from what little resistance remained that you, the Commander, had possibly been located to bring Central back into the fold. He is somewhat of a broken man, Commander, but your return can hopefully provide him, and humanity, new hope that we can reclaim our planet.