Early XCOM: Enemy Unknown review is a surprise

XCOM: Enemy Unknown is scheduled for release on October 9th, 2012 in North America and on the 12th in Europe and Australia. This is regarded as a turn-based tactical RPG strategy game, and those skeptical about it will find an early review to be a surprise. As a remake of the 1994 classic strategy game, UFO: Enemy Unknown, XCOM is set on modern-day Earth and revolves around the issues of a global alien invasion.

The main mission in the game is set around the home base and this involves checking various rooms that include a barracks, mission control and a research lab. There are many different types of aliens in XCOM so researching new technologies is a vital part of the game, and this could even including checking out the alien’s dead bodies. In an early review by The Controller Online, they feel the atmosphere is one of the main draws to the game, unlike other turn-based strategies, where you can view both armies and act accordingly. With XCOM, the dark maps and creepy surroundings only highlight a small area around your squad, and the fact that the enemy is just out of view makes this all the more appealing.

They expected the controls would be similar to other turn-based games and they were right, selecting where you want you soldier to move, although many differences come with this title and cover is one of the more prominent aspects along with movement, which can involve jumping through windows and doors, as well as a stealthier approach. Viewing this as a fast-paced game that is unlike your average turn-based strategy, the creepy atmosphere makes this more exciting than first imagined.

In a review by Video Game Writers.com, they only got the chance to cover the single-player portion and pick out the fact that this game does not play the same mechanically as the original UFO Defense, although the suspense is still apparent and finishing a mission to the best of your ability is rewarding. Sometimes what you feel is a perfect plan couldn’t be further from the truth and getting too ahead of yourself can end up costing you a man or two. Building up a team makes this a great experience and the actions you take are far more consequential than first expected, a more streamlined two-command setup is ideal for ordering your team to shoot and move.

Plenty of improvements can be found in XCOM in comparison to the original and the strategy aspect still remains, as far as the graphics are concerned, the Unreal Engine shows that it is not just ideal for shooters, even if the animations are not so good on occasions. Overall, they feel the planning and gameplay involved makes this an impressive encounter. Will you be getting XCOM: Enemy Unknown next week? What did you think of the original?

  • Kim

    I played and finished the original multiple times, but none of the others.
    I am anticipating this one with great interest, but I will not buy it next week.
    First because I am currently hooked on Guild Wars 2, second I want some user reviews first, third I don’t know wether to buy it for PS3 or PC so I’ll wait until I know on which platform it performs better.

  • Ronin

    Playing the demo, I felt they captured enough of the originals tone that it was worth a shot. Firaxis has a solid history, and X-Com and Terror From The Deep gave me many enjoyable days worth of quality play when I was younger. The next two games were insane disappointments and the first person shooter idea was a little too radical, although it may turn out to be great. I would have liked to have had more time to explore, but I was interested enough to jump on what I saw.

  • Rizno

    If funds permit – I’ll be picking this up via Steam! Love the original till this day.

  • stevieweevil

    Already pre ordered it on amazon. Played the demo and it’s looking as good as the original xcom and terror from the deep. The xcom base looks good but isn’t as customisable as the originals and I can’t see how they’ll handle base invasions (maybe they won’t). Looking forward to it.