XCom returning to the strategy genre alongside its bastard FPS step-child
I didn’t play X-Com until way after the fact, when I heard it was one of the best tactical/strategy games ever made. I played it, loved it, was done with it in about a month. But the ride I had was pretty great: building a secret government base complete with alien autopsy rooms, monitoring the atmosphere for incoming extra terrestrials and leading a team of super-SWAT-people to capture downed alien crafts. Its the sort of game that, frankly, was rarely ever copied because I think it was hard to grasp the formula.
It was a bit of a shock, then, when 2K announced a fresh new adaptation of the series titled XCOM, which would take place in the 1950s and be a first-person shooter. Fans generally sounded outraged by this blasphemy, you don’t turn a strategy game into a FPS. Admitededly I liked what 2K was doing despite all that, it looked like a neat idea, but I digress. What seems to have come out of the ashes of publish backlash is a proper follow-up to the classic game with XCom: Enemy Unknown.
If the screenshots are any indication, it looks like a mostly-faithful recreation. Base building looks more inspired from Sim Tower than it does from the original game and the tactical phase looks oh-so-much nicer with its graphical update. What I think is more interesting is that this game isn’t set in the 1950’s like its other upcoming title, being set a couple decades later, yet it still takes place earlier in the series’ fiction. This is probably due to an ongoing trend to always make games that take place earlier in time than later, which I have never truly understood (see Bioshock: Infinite and every damn Zelda game to come out). Looks pretty fun though, fans should be happy to some extent and literally nobody else will want to play it!