Excerpt: Worlds are at war again in Firaxis’ XCOM Enemy Unknown, a slick reboot of the ‘90s DOS classic – which any fan will tell you didn’t need one. Invaded by an unidentified flying armada, the game focused on turn-based management as you battled an alien enemy, letting you lead humanity’s first line of defense as a commander.
Conclusion: XCOM is quick to learn, the controls are pretty simple, and it's pretty easy to know what you're doing. But it will take a long, long time to master. The difficulty is punishing, but not impossible. If you can put in the time and effort to master the game, it's is easily a strong candidate for anyone's 'game of the year' list.
Excerpt: XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a near-future turn based strategy game which features a global force of elite military banded together to face an alien invasion. Published by 2K Games and developed by Firaxis, the eighteen year old franchise has been dormant for awhile but is now making its triumphant return. The game tells the tale [...
Excerpt: 2012 has proven to be an excellent year for storytelling in video games. Mass Effect 3 and Assassin’s Creed III gave the stunning (though controversial) conclusions to epic series, Max Payne 3 and Halo 4 saw the return of gaming’s most beloved icons, and titles like Journey, Spec Ops: The Line and The Walking Dead have pushed what the medium is capable of.
Summary: Intuitive, action packed and intelligent, " X-Com: Enemy Unknown " is both classic and modern, marrying the sensibilities of the original franchise with current design ideals. It manages to bring enough of the basics to the fore to make it accessible to a modern audience, while leaving enough to discover to make the first run through a challenge without considerable luck or outside study.
Conclusion: XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a frustrating game to review, because there are a lot of very good, very smart design choices in it, but it's impossible not to compare it to its forefather. It's clearly a love letter to the franchise, but it's also one that hasn't been afraid to make changes. Unfortunately, in my opinion, not all these changes have been for the better, and I think that they strip out layers of complexity in favor of accessibility.
Excerpt: Although I was never a diehard X-COM fan (yes, there was a hyphen at some point!), I heartily enjoyed most of the games in the franchise, particularly the few in the early-mid 90s. What made the games so special was the fact that they combined both action strategy and resource management into one beautiful, tough-as-nails marriage. Well, now the time has finally come for the franchise to grace the console generation — and I have to say, I like what I see.