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About the product
- Destroyable environment
- Strong storyline
- Strong storyline
- New scary enemies and powerful allies
- New amazing technologies and items to be researched and developed
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The player will need to investigate what happened on the Earth surface, and if somebody survived. After this groudwork is achieved, the player will land on Earth and start to build bases and collect resources to be able to produce new technologies and develop incredible weapons and devices for fighting against new enemies who want the Earth for themselves.
From the Manufacturer
The story of UFO: Aftershock connects to one of the "bad" endings of the first game (UFO: Aftermath), namely the accepting of the "Reticulan Offer". This is however not obvious from the beginning of the game.
Laputa is a flying island, closed ecosystem, which has an antigravity unit that keeps it suspended and can propel it around the atmosphere. All of this is Reticulan technology, used in their spaceships. It is covered by a large dome, a type of forcefield that keeps air in. Laputa flies approximately a thousand kilometres above ground, high above the atmosphere. Throughout the enclosed eco-system, there are normal plants growing that do most of the recycling and filtering of the air. Water is filtered and processed in special processing plants, although this technology is human and prone to failure.
People born on Laputa know nothing of the Reticulan invasion, the Biomass and events of the first instalment. The Council of Earth, by the mercy of Reticulans and the rulers of Laputa, created a tough totalitarian society. The official line is that Earth was mysteriously wiped out by the Biomass and some psionic explosion. The CoE managed to save a chosen few and provide them with a refuge in heavens. Return to Earth is impossible, studying Earth is forbidden, as is any research about the events that lead to the Ascension as it is called. This rigid society cannot survive forever, though. The young people of Laputa increasingly question the CoE authority and eventually an open revolt breaks out. CoE rulers panic and initiate the auto destruction sequence. However only handful of people escape and this is where the game starts.
Top customer reviews
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The story is interesting, and even more enjoyable if you played the previous game. Since the premise for the beginning is one of the alternate endings to Aftermath, it ends up covering ground that is usually untouched in the genre. This makes the story more unique and less derivative than might be expected.
The resource management element is more complex than Aftermath, but still fairly simple, and easily grasped. The new reputation and diplomacy tool is nice, and can be quite useful at times, though it often helps most when left alone. The new races are an interesting addition, and the soldier recruitment system is more convenient than the "have a new recruit randomly appear in the roster every so often" system in Aftermath.
The tactical combat is the heart of it all: the chance to use the soldiers you've carefully improved, trained, and equipped. If you enjoy the combat, you'll probably enjoy the game in general, and the combat is definitely enjoyable. It's much improved from Aftermath, particularly with the ability to go inside structures without it requiring a second map, and to use ladders, stairs, elevators, and teleporters to move on multiple levels of the same map. The new weapon mods improve your ability to customize your troops according to tactic or whim, and the weapon balance is much better, with different damage types and delivery options being significant factors on the battlefield. As a whole, the tactical options are greatly expanded, and it feels more natural and fun.
I'd like to be able to end it right there, and leave on a happy note, but sadly the many good points of the game also make you really notice the flaws. First and foremost, the game regularly crashes to desktop, usually after no more than an hour or so of play. This is a serious and inexcusable problem, even after patching the game, but for me simply saving frequently reduced it from "game-breaking" to "annoying" status.
Second, the game comes bundled with and dependent on the much-despised StarForce copy protection software. StarForce is intrusive, hard to get rid of, and some people have reported that it resulted in permanent damage to their optical drives. It is, however, fairly low-profile and inconspicuous, and for me the risk of possible drive damage wasn't a major deterrent. Even if something did happen, optical drives are fairly cheap these days. I'm willing to risk it if it means I can enjoy the games that, like Aftershock, regrettably punish those who legitimately buy their copies, leaving anyone able to remove the copy protection a compelling reason to do so.
Finally, there is a valid complaint to be made that while fun, the combat missions feel old after a while. This is mostly due to the mission generation system: because many maps and environment elements are re-used, and while the circumstances may vary, there are ultimately only a few mission objective types. For me, this was a bit of an issue, but I got past it by not letting my units have permanency. I found that as long as I was always trying a new armor, weapon, mod, special ability, or tactic, there was something new and interesting that kept me involved even if I was fighting a battle I'd basically already fought before. This will understandably be less helpful after you've played the game through, and explored most of the options. If you're bored easily, you might want to try renting the game or finding a place to buy it heavily discounted, because replay value will be limited. There are a lot of options to explore, though, and I've managed to go through it twice without feeling like it wasn't worth my money.
In the end, there's serious problems that keep me from recommending the game the way I'd like to. I found that I could work with them though, and really enjoyed the game apart from them. If it sounds like you could handle them too, I'd encourage you to give it a try. I know I'm glad that I did.
I've played Xcom and had fun, so far these are playable.
My first taste of squad-based tactical games came from the XCOM series. Though not a true sequel, the UFO series certainly inherits many of the traits and feature of the XCOM series. UFO Aftershock is a different game, no doubt; however, I still really enjoy playing it. The real-time squad based tactics style, squad development, different races, large research tree are some of the features that make it unique. You can specialize your squad members, multi-class, use cyborg enhancements, psionic abilities in your quest to reclaim the Earth.
In addition to the bugs (aliens) to hunt, there are a few game bugs to contend with, which for the most part have patches from a fan-base. There is lack of any AI or formation for your squad members, which is a sore point. The "Geoscape" view on occasion spins rapidly and resets to your first base. Rare crashes can be aggravating, but are minimized with the newer patches. The interface feels a bit rudimentary and could have used some stream-lining.
The bottom-line is, I like it! After the major bugs are fixed, the remaining quirks are simply...quirks. I can tolerate the quirks because I enjoy the sci-fi real-time, squad based, RPG combination it produces.
The game stands on its own fairly well. The stop-go combat has it's advantages and disadvantages. It'd be nice if your guys would open up on new targets without being told, but that's fine.
One thing it does better than Aftermath is getting to combat sites. I got stuck in Aftermath more than once where I couldn't expand because my guys would get halfway to an attack site and I'd have to reroute them to defend a base. After ten such trips, I got sick of that nonsense. X-com you had the multiple squads, this one you've got instantaneous drops.
All in all, not a bad game, much better than the first.
As for the detracters that say 'all the combat sites look alike'. Well, hate to say it, but so did x-com's. X-coms AI was better, but they both have repeating combat site layouts. I also enjoy the ability to modify weapons and micromanage my squads specialties. But, I miss the size of x-com bases and the diversity you could build into them. With only three to five 'buildings', you really have to grab land in a hurry just to get any research progress.
On it's own, it's a good game. Compared to X-Com, it's a little lacking in spots, but I think it does a few things better or maybe not better per se, but different in a way I like. Maybe Afterlight will fix a couple of the weak areas.