10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
A remake that lives up to its classic roots,
This review is from: XCOM: Enemy Unknown - Playstation 3 (Video Game)
++++++ BACKGROUND ++++++
X-Com: Enemy Unknown is a remake of the classic game X-Com: UFO Defense (UFO: Enemy Unknown outside North America) released in 1994 and is considered one of the top ten games of all time for the computer.
There are currently two re-makes currently undergoing development to be published by 2K. The first, known as XCOM, will be produced by Irrational games and depicts the XCOM universe as a First Person Shooter in the 1950's although recent announcements suggest it has been moved to the 1960's and will be squad based combat.
The second, X-Com: Enemy Unknown, was developed by Firaxis games and consists of the game I am currently reviewing. Firaxis are veteran developers of the genre of strategy games due to development of games such as Alpha Centauri and Civilization under the guidance of Sid Meier, one of the companies co-founders and creators of such classic games as Sid Meier's PIRATES!, Civilization, and Railroad Tycoon.
++++++ GAMEPLAY & COMBAT ++++++
X-Com: Enemy Unknown is a return to the world of single player strategy games that are few and far in-between in this world of first person multi-player shooters. Gameplay is divided in-between two areas; management and battle skirmishes.
In management, you build up your bases, upgrade facilities, preform research and development of weapons all the while monitoring your finances which always feel like a heavy burden you are carrying upon your shoulder you just cannot escape.
The skirmishes are where the meat and bones of the game lie and where you may spend a majority of your time. Simple choices you make in a turn-based fashion have an overall effect on the outcome of the battle. If you slip and make a poor choice the computer will make you feel that error. It may seem fun to go around and annihilating everything in your pass by using high explosive weapons but strategy requires you to capture and collect your enemies bodies and weapons. To get close requires strategy, planning, and luck several moves out. A well thought out strategy and turn is the key to success.
You spend your time recruiting, customizing, and developing your soldiers while watching them rise through the ranks after each successful mission becoming attached in the process only to have them fall in combat....and fall they shall. Your memorial wall will be filled by the midpoint of the game from the losses you will sustain. With the close intimacy of you and your men, the loss of a high ranking officer is a devastating moment to be played through and experience first hand.
The gameplay, compared to the original, has been streamlined but that is expected as the fact the game has been customized to fit the multiple of consoles it has been released for as well as the fact the field of gaming has changed a tremendous amount in the eighteen years since the original was released. The console does play rather well compared to its keyboard/mouse counterpart on the PC.
++++++ GRAPHICS & PRESENTATION ++++++
The graphics are, obviously, an improvement over its 1994 counterpart. I have had several issues with camera angels. Also, the action shots that you endure that became popular since Fallout 3 are entertaining if somewhat repetative. The skirmishes provide a very destructive environment that will leave the battlefield resembling swiss cheese that was burnt in a microwave.
++++++ CHALLENGE ++++++
The game is challenging but is not at the point where you feel as if you need to throw the controller at the wall because you have reached an in pass in gameplay.
Some have stated that this game is more difficult than the original. The reason why is the original X-Com in 1994 contained an error so all difficulty levels were the same. Later X-Com games were noted for their increased difficulty because this issue was fixed in sequels and later editions of the game.
++++++ STORY ++++++
The story is, overall, engrossing throughout the game and provides motivation to make it to the finish to see the end result. Who doesn't enjoy a good Human VS the Evil Aliens story?
++++++ CONCLUSION ++++++
This game is worthwhile of the title "X-Com" even with the high expectations and standards set before it by the classic "X-Com" of 1994. This game has met and exceeded the challenges set before it.
Highly recommended for those that enjoy turned based strategy games as well as those that desire something different than the dozens of first person shooter games that now littler the video game marketplace.