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vinraith
05-10-2012, 08:17 PM
So here's my dilemma. I never really spent any time with the original X-Com games. That's a damned tragedy, as they're exactly my kind of games, but I flatly missed them in their era (didn't have a PC of my own at the time and was at the mercy of other people's game purchases as a result) and have subsequently always been put off by interface issues.

The result is that, honestly, I haven't paid the new one much mind. My general sense has been that it's fundamentally a lesser game than the original, so if I haven't played that why play this?

My question, I suppose, is where someone who loves the idea of X-Com but seems to have an underlying problem with both the old and the new version is better off trying to get a toe-hold on the series. Is there any real merit to the new one over the old ones? Are there mods for the old ones that smooth out the interface issues and fix the lingering bugs? What's an avid strategy gamer with a glaring hole in his gaming background to do?

BestFriends4Ever
05-10-2012, 08:25 PM
Get the new one, ride the hype wave of love (and hate), if you still like it, buy the old one(s).

In my subjective opinion, the new XCOM is going to be a lot of fun. I will never supersede the classic(s) but will be a great game in its own rite. Lot of people think that it is dumbed down but I disagree.

MadJax
05-10-2012, 08:25 PM
Personally I still enjoy playing the original as it comes on Steam (Long since lost my original discs), which afaik comes with all the patches that were released (1 I believe) and a working version of DosBox for modern OS's. There's nothing REALLY game-breaking left over with the game (Unlike TFTD which can become un-winnable if a certain piece of kit isn't researched at the right time), and as for interface issues, it may be just nostalgia, but I've never had a REAL problem with it (I find if I've forgotten what a certain buttons/function does, I head to the UFOPaedia (http://www.ufopaedia.org/) .

I still can't wait for the new one though, so my recommendation is get both, play the original until the new one comes out next week :)

BestFriends4Ever
05-10-2012, 08:28 PM
NB, there aren't that many bugs (in the old one(s)) really. And it's not like the UI just goes nuts in the middle of the game - it's just cumbersome. There is also XcomUtil (https://sites.google.com/site/stjones/xcomutil) to tweak the game a little bit.

Sparkasaurusmex
05-10-2012, 08:31 PM
You say you're into strategy games, so you probably already have (or don't like) Civ V, but that comes with the new XCom if you pre-order on Steam. To me that makes it seem worthwhile if you don't have Civ V... would be nice if they gave you the expansion if you already own the game. Well, I guess it's nice enough to simply give us the game they're selling.

I think this new game will be perfect for you. You won't be disenchanted by any possible bastardization of canon, and it won't have that interface that keeps you away from the original.

vinraith
05-10-2012, 08:36 PM
Tried Civ 5, don't like Civ V, if anything it's a further source of skepticism with respect to Firaxis in general and this remake in particular.

Anyone here know anything about the Enemy Unknown Extended mod?

http://ufopaedia.org/index.php?title=Enemy_Unknown_Extended

MadJax
05-10-2012, 08:41 PM
Anyone here know anything about the Enemy Unknown Extended mod?

http://ufopaedia.org/index.php?title=Enemy_Unknown_Extended

Never tried it tbh, the only thing I've ever used is XcomUtil for the occasional tweak. I tend to keep things mostly vanilla...in fact *Boots up Steam*

EDIT: For you (And anyone else who decides to try out the Classic), the best piece of advice are easily Murphy's Laws (http://www.ufopaedia.org/index.php?title=Murphy%27s_Laws_%28X-COM%29)

gundato
05-10-2012, 08:44 PM
If you can find it cheap (and with an acceptable DRM), UFO: Extraterrestrials is a pretty good take. MUCH lower production values than the new one, but captured the feel of the original (at least for me), albeit a lot easier.

And there was a pseudo-sequel that came out afterward (think it is a prequel?) that incorporates all the best mods from the original.

I think Steam has it.

arccos
05-10-2012, 08:49 PM
The original is quite a good game, but certainly has it's share of issues. The learning curve is pretty high for it, too. Coming to it recently myself, I would suggest watching a let's play or two of it on YouTube and seeing if you like it. Either it'll get you interested and educated enough to play it, or it'll not be interesting enough to play. Either way, you got a chance to see the game enough to know what it's like.

If you don't go for X-Com, I'd recommend taking look at the UFO: After series. It's 3 games with pause-able real time combat that is a little more modern while having some of the charm of X-Com. I really like them.

The new XCom does look pretty excellent, and I like that they tried to change a few of the features instead of slavishly assuming the original is all roses. It looks like they took an honest attempt at modernizing the original instead of cashing in.

Drake Sigar
05-10-2012, 08:51 PM
I have a feeling I'd love the concepts and consequences X-Com brought to the table far more than actually playing the original game itself. I've followed this new one religiously and know without a doubt this is the game for me.


If you can find it cheap (and with an acceptable DRM), UFO: Extraterrestrials is a pretty good take. MUCH lower production values than the new one, but captured the feel of the original (at least for me), albeit a lot easier

Your soldiers don't even die...

Hypernetic
05-10-2012, 08:57 PM
The original xcom pretty much requires you to have the manual sitting in front of you, at least until you memorize everything.

arathain
05-10-2012, 09:09 PM
Hmm, I'm trying to apply what I know of your tastes here and failing. I may ramble a bit below, but the only really useful bit of advice I can give is to buy the original, since it is cheap and excellent, and wait for the reviews and post-release feedback before buying the remake.

Rambling likely coming in later post.

Oak
05-10-2012, 09:29 PM
Like BestFriends said, the UI is more cumbersome than anything. Once you decipher its hieroglyphics - I think I simply read the manual - and make peace with the lack of some modern conveniences, it's gravy. Nothing to be scared of.

Jockie
05-10-2012, 10:30 PM
If the new one looks a bit streamlined for your tastes (I think it looks rather wonderful myself) there's always Xenonauts (http://www.xenonauts.com/) to keep a look out for. It was getting quite a lot of RPS coverage at one point and looks more like the original x-com with the rough edges sanded off.

They haven't updated their website since May, but they release pretty regular updates via their forums and there's a paid alpha program if you lack patience.

Lets play of the latest version is looking pretty promising:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6_f7_NNfMA&feature=plcp

TillEulenspiegel
05-10-2012, 10:52 PM
Like BestFriends said, the UI is more cumbersome than anything. Once you decipher its hieroglyphics - I think I simply read the manual - and make peace with the lack of some modern conveniences, it's gravy. Nothing to be scared of.
Do people have serious issues with the X-COM interface beyond just the unlabeled buttons? I've seen a few people complaining about the X-COM UI recently and didn't really understand. If it's just that, yeah, it's easily learnable. Click stuff and see what it does. If you die, try again. If you can't figure out what something does after a few clicks (probably because you don't have a flying suit yet), look it up.

I assume you've played Jagged Alliance 2, so all the basic concepts are the same.

Outside of combat, the geoscape controls and stuff aren't exactly slick, but meh, they work.

Barberetti
05-10-2012, 11:15 PM
I started playing it a couple of weeks ago for the first time. The manual has 3 short tutorials that take you through the basics of the Geoscape, Battlescape, and Base management. By the time you're done with those, you'll have the interface down. It's really not that bad at all.

Dariune
05-10-2012, 11:20 PM
My honest opinion is to go for the old X-Com.

Its a phenominal game. The UI is dated, the graphics are obviously dated but it is a game which I really enjoy instead of just kill time with.

I didnt really get on with UFO:E. It was good, and a fairly solid remake but I didnt like the art style and the pace of the game seemed wrong.

I also think all of the UFO after... series are good. The last two being the best. They arent quite as tactical as X-Com but the story is more fleshed out (Except the ending of After Light) and the UI/Graphics improved.

The Firaxis X-Com seems like it will be fun but im not expecting anything great from it. Firaxis, IMO, did mess up Civ 5 but forgetting that and just judging the game on what I have seen, it feels like the game will grow old really quickly. A limited number of men and the slight streamlining makes me wonder, truly, how many tactical options there will be. I also fear, that the research will be pretty basic. That fear is unfounded but I have a feeling I will be right.

Xenonauts looks like there has been some real passion put into it. The graphics are so so and the art style an aquired taste but it looks like there will be a fair few tactical options in there. I also fear that the research tree will be TOO similar to the original X-Com. If so, some of the novelty of researching each item will be lacking. The guns also look pretty generic but, that aside, I reckon Xenonauts will be the better of the two new games.

Thats my opinion anyway :)

BestFriends4Ever
05-10-2012, 11:33 PM
Xenonaughts

Very "telling" choice of spelling : )

Dariune
05-10-2012, 11:51 PM
Very "telling" choice of spelling : )

lol shush, im tired :P

vinraith
06-10-2012, 12:01 AM
With respect to the original, I know there's a serious difficulty bug of some stripe that one has to use a mod to get around. Are there any others?

Barberetti
06-10-2012, 12:05 AM
With respect to the original, I know there's a serious difficulty bug of some stripe that one has to use a mod to get around. Are there any others?

Just a few

http://www.ufopaedia.org/index.php?title=Known_Bugs

:D

vinraith
06-10-2012, 12:27 AM
Just a few

http://www.ufopaedia.org/index.php?title=Known_Bugs

:D

Right, so is there something that fixes those?

MadJax
06-10-2012, 12:34 AM
Usually stuff like XcomUtil, it's all on that UFOpeadia, if it isn't, then it's really not worth worrying about.

The difficulty bug you refer to is the fact that despite what difficulty you select at the start, it makes NO Difference in the vanilla game, as it's all the same difficulty (This is about the worst bug that you're likely to encounter outside of larger agents getting stuck in small buildings.

soldant
06-10-2012, 01:07 AM
Do people have serious issues with the X-COM interface beyond just the unlabeled buttons? I've seen a few people complaining about the X-COM UI recently and didn't really understand. If it's just that, yeah, it's easily learnable.
True but it's still not a particularly good UI. The issues with ambiguous buttons was a limitation of the time period, so for then it was okay, but by modern standards it's unacceptable.

A far greater sin was making it far too easy to screw up a movement by not requiring a second click in movement. As it stands it's easy to accidentally have the mouse snap to another grid square and have your guy go cheerfully walking away from cover and into the open. That was a genuinely bad piece of UI design, because the rigid grid makes it very easy to have accidents like that. It's exacerbated today with fast mouse movement unless you slow the game down in DOSBOX quite a bit.


OP: Get the original. It's cheap, there's an abundance of information about it to get you started, and it's a classic. I wouldn't bother with Terror From the Deep, because it artificially ramped the difficulty right up by making everything take a thousand hits to kill and flooding the place with aliens.

Xenonauts will be closer to the old XCOM than the new XCOM, but that means some arbitrary things like time units and soldier stat progression are done just because the old XCOM did that, not because there's any real justification for it. For a purist like me, that's cool, but if you don't like the original XCOM mechanics it's not worth getting.

The new XCOM takes a different path, so the die-hard purists will bitch about changes like removing time units and stats progression and multiple bases (I wish we had multiple bases!) but by all accounts it keeps the asymmetrical warfare component and uphill struggle which is the hallmark of the series, as well as the tense battles. It just has different combat mechanics, and some changes help with the flow and might help prevent that endless hunt for the last alien hiding away that you spend the next 50 turns looking for.

Wizardry
06-10-2012, 01:09 AM
So here's my dilemma. I never really spent any time with the original X-Com games. That's a damned tragedy, as they're exactly my kind of games, but I flatly missed them in their era (didn't have a PC of my own at the time and was at the mercy of other people's game purchases as a result) and have subsequently always been put off by interface issues.

The result is that, honestly, I haven't paid the new one much mind. My general sense has been that it's fundamentally a lesser game than the original, so if I haven't played that why play this?

My question, I suppose, is where someone who loves the idea of X-Com but seems to have an underlying problem with both the old and the new version is better off trying to get a toe-hold on the series. Is there any real merit to the new one over the old ones? Are there mods for the old ones that smooth out the interface issues and fix the lingering bugs? What's an avid strategy gamer with a glaring hole in his gaming background to do?
Seriously, just force yourself to play it. Don't worry about failure the first time. Don't even worry about missing entire features of the game such as research. Just learn bit by bit and when you lose the game just restart. This is how you get into any old strategy or RPG that you missed. You just need to dive in and play purely to learn the game, and then once you've gotten a grasp over all the features you restart for real.

Also, read the manual.

arathain
06-10-2012, 02:24 AM
OK, rambling.

I just listened to the Three Moves Ahead (http://www.idlethumbs.net/3ma/episodes/we-will-be-watching-commander) podcast, and at one point the panelists hit on something that I think marks the key difference between the way the original plays and the way the remake will play, and it relates to decision making. In the original, one has a broad, fluid decision set. The game starts and you are shown the globe and asked to place your first base. It can go anywhere you like- literally any pixel of land can be selected. In combat, you have usually 10+ troops available, and without a cover system the range of places they might sensibly be moved to is very high, especially with the flexible time point system of action. Equipping involves selecting items to place in the hands, on the belt, on each leg. Soldiers have a dozen different stats which increase gradually with use. Your success in the game is the aggregate of many smaller decisions, over which you have a lot of control, although it can be tricky to parse out the effect of individual decisions precisely.

The newer one makes decisions far more granular, with far more clearly defined consequences. You build your base by picking a country, each of which gives you a bonus. Combat has 4 to 6 units, who now need to be in cover all the time. Combined with soldier abilities this gives you a series of discrete choices as to which cover you move to, which action you take after your move. You equip your soldiers by picking a weapon, sidearm, armour and single piece of gear from a menu. You even get mutually exclusive missions presented, with rewards and consequences. You make your decisions from a smaller available set, with the effects being clear, but also hugely significant, and you should often find yourself going back and forth as to what to do with many of them.

As an aside, I think the influence of Sid Meier is clear- he's the 'interesting decisions' guy. The lead designer, Jake Solomon, worked directly for Meier for most of a decade, and considers himself something of a disciple. We end up with a game that I think will derive much of its tension from having to make constant decisions with large consequences, and frequently having to work out the risk/reward from those decisions.

No value judgments intended in the above . Both approaches are capable of producing very compelling games. I love the original and I'm very excited about the remake.

Vinraith, I think Wizardry's advice is good. I think concerns about the clunkiness are perfectly valid, but often overstated. In particular, the strategic side has lots of well labelled menus leading to screens with obvious functions. You'll spend a little while poking around the base menus in particular, you'll build a few things, start some research, buy some stuff, and then you'll be off. In the tactical screen the issues come from having to learn the button icons and accidentally moving a soldier while trying to select another. Not quite knowing what to do or what to expect is in large part by design. We all fell in love with the game learning to play it.

Prokroustis
06-10-2012, 02:29 AM
So here's my dilemma. I never really spent any time with the original X-Com games. That's a damned tragedy, as they're exactly my kind of games, but I flatly missed them in their era (didn't have a PC of my own at the time and was at the mercy of other people's game purchases as a result) and have subsequently always been put off by interface issues.

The result is that, honestly, I haven't paid the new one much mind. My general sense has been that it's fundamentally a lesser game than the original, so if I haven't played that why play this?

My question, I suppose, is where someone who loves the idea of X-Com but seems to have an underlying problem with both the old and the new version is better off trying to get a toe-hold on the series. Is there any real merit to the new one over the old ones? Are there mods for the old ones that smooth out the interface issues and fix the lingering bugs? What's an avid strategy gamer with a glaring hole in his gaming background to do?

Get the original (steam probably), use UFOextender (http://www.ufopaedia.org/index.php?title=User:Seb76#UFO_Extender) (the latest version is April 2012 afaik). Get the higher quality music tracks (http://www.xcomufo.com/x1music.html) (read .ini of UFOextender). Important things to turn on in the .ini (if they aren't already on): more smoke, auto sell (it'll make your life 1000 times easier). There are many more that you'll like to check once you've got the hang of the basics. Good alien hunting!

QuantaCat
06-10-2012, 06:57 AM
Seriously, just force yourself to play it. Don't worry about failure the first time. Don't even worry about missing entire features of the game such as research. Just learn bit by bit and when you lose the game just restart. This is how you get into any old strategy or RPG that you missed. You just need to dive in and play purely to learn the game, and then once you've gotten a grasp over all the features you restart for real.

Also, read the manual.

Yes, this. Civ 5 doesnt lend it self to multiple games for me, but Ive failed so much in XCOM already, and restarted every time.

Its awesome. Its a bit roguelike in that aspect, only with 10-20 hour sessions.

AlonePlusEasyTarget
06-10-2012, 07:37 AM
You can only understand why it is so good in the first place by playing the original instead of trying the butchered remake. It changes too much that I fear the remake don't have that magic from the original like what happened to Deus Ex HR.

XCOMUtil is essential as it fix a few UI issues (you can set double click for movement, auto sell etc) but other than that you're good to go

QuantaCat
06-10-2012, 07:59 AM
You can only understand why it is so good in the first place by playing the original instead of trying the butchered remake. It changes too much that I fear the remake don't have that magic from the original like what happened to Deus Ex HR.

XComUtil is essential as it fix a few UI issues (you can set double click for movement, auto sell etc) but other than that you're good to go

.... Please stop the unreleased game bashing.

RogerMellie
06-10-2012, 10:52 AM
I've been playing the old game for the last week on and off and had a great time. It approaches things in a way that just isn't seen very often these days. The UI isn't the best but nothing you can't overcome. The original is available for just $1.25 now in NA (not sure where the angry dome is).

If you can get it for that, I'd humbly submit that you'd be as mad as a box of frogs to choose not to.

http://www.gamefly.com/Download-X-Com-UFO-Defense/150775/

I think you might have to fight your way around their version of Steam if you get it there though.

AlonePlusEasyTarget
06-10-2012, 11:11 AM
.... Please stop the unreleased game bashing.

I just state my worries about the upcoming game based on the videos and the demo. I'd try it for sure when it reach bargain bin price but not at release, just like I did with Human Revolution. Hopefully by that time the community mod the game so it feels closer to the mechanics of the first game.

All I did is just to avoid another buyer's remorse.

DWZippy
06-10-2012, 11:20 AM
The original xcom pretty much requires you to have the manual sitting in front of you, at least until you memorize everything.

This is nonsense. I taught myself the game when I was 12. I still play it now, although I die much much less [I used to burn 5 soldiers a mission when I was 12. I was awful.] - and I've never touched the manual. There are some things that maybe don't make too much sense, but the in game UFOPedia clears up a lot of the fuss.

If you've played other strategy games [JA2/Silent Storm/Swat 2] the game will make a lot of sense to you.

Danny252
06-10-2012, 12:12 PM
Do people really find the original X-Com's UI that difficult? The Battlescape had a few un-named buttons for the reaction fire TU thingies and I recall grenades were a bit confusing ("Wait, I've primed it, but I have to throw it too? Oka... Oh, no TUs. Was nice knowing you, Rookie.") but I don't remember much else being terribad.

NathanH
06-10-2012, 12:50 PM
Do people really find the original X-Com's UI that difficult? The Battlescape had a few un-named buttons for the reaction fire TU thingies and I recall grenades were a bit confusing ("Wait, I've primed it, but I have to throw it too? Oka... Oh, no TUs. Was nice knowing you, Rookie.") but I don't remember much else being terribad.

Confusing buttons, no tooltips, easy to do stuff you don't intend to by accident, one-click move, easy to click on the wrong square, especially when at a different level, confusing line of sight, TU faff, setting up squads is quite annoying, limited info on equipment... it's rather poor, if it was released today it would be crucified, but it's far from unplayable.

DevinSmoth
06-10-2012, 12:53 PM
Another alternative is to try and play Terror From the Deep which, from what I've heard, takes the original and basically improves on it. ;P I have always been a fan of the original and still play that game quite a bit. In my opinion, the original is probably my favorite strategy game of all time. ;P

I won't be buying the new one actually for a while, partially due to a really full backlog, but when I need a UFO fix, I can play the original again. ;P

Danny252
06-10-2012, 01:36 PM
You really have no excuse not to buy it now - 75p on GameFly:

http://www.gamefly.co.uk/Download-X-Com-UFO-Defense/5001197/#.UHAlgFEVhiQ

duff
06-10-2012, 01:38 PM
Vinraith - I would urge you not to dismiss the remake before it's even out. The RPS folks seem to have really liked it and felt it had retained it's tactical depth. Obviously you should not take that at face value and do your own research once people have been able to see the full game. I just feel that ruling out the remake completely could be a disservice to yourself. I'd definitely play the original though, whether you play the remake or not.

soldant
06-10-2012, 02:42 PM
Another alternative is to try and play Terror From the Deep which, from what I've heard, takes the original and basically improves on it. ;P
Nope, bad advice. TFTD ramps up the difficulty significantly, and doesn't really do anything different except add multi-part terror missions which drag on for ages and are incredibly unforgiving due to the tight cruise ship layouts with no room to move. Um, and part of it is underwater I guess?

If you have trouble with the original, TFTD is worse. And the interface didn't get any boosts. Also by default it has a crippling research bug which makes it impossible to research armour unless you follow a very specific research pattern, though fan patches can fix that.

vinraith
06-10-2012, 02:46 PM
OK, say I've been convinced to just try the original. What mods/tools do I need? XComUtil? Extender? What settings should I use? Is there a consensus on this stuff among fans?

DevinSmoth
06-10-2012, 02:54 PM
Honestly, I've never modded the original and I enjoy it quite a bit, vinraith. But then again, I'm generally one for vanilla experiences in my older games.


Nope, bad advice. TFTD ramps up the difficulty significantly, and doesn't really do anything different except add multi-part terror missions which drag on for ages and are incredibly unforgiving due to the tight cruise ship layouts with no room to move. Um, and part of it is underwater I guess?

Yeah, I don't know really. I haven't played TFTD yet, so I was unsure. But okay then!

vinraith
06-10-2012, 03:05 PM
Honestly, I've never modded the original and I enjoy it quite a bit, vinraith. But then again, I'm generally one for vanilla experiences in my older games.


I'm mostly thinking fan patching, considering that bug list.

SectoidBro
06-10-2012, 03:38 PM
I am in the UK. I would like to play X-Com whenever it actually releases, on the 8th or 9th or whatever the hell it is now, instead of waiting for Friday.

How do I do this, barring the purchase of an airplane ticket?

QuantaCat
06-10-2012, 04:24 PM
I see no problem in obtaining it from a bunch of dastardly pirates if youve bought it already.

Atleast they dont care about internet waters that seem to separate us from our goods.

Oshada
06-10-2012, 04:28 PM
I am in the UK. I would like to play X-Com whenever it actually releases, on the 8th or 9th or whatever the hell it is now, instead of waiting for Friday.

How do I do this, barring the purchase of an airplane ticket?

You could try something I overheard your friend Mr. Bird saying to your other friend Mr. Ear, something about VPNs.

duff
06-10-2012, 06:32 PM
You could try something I overheard your friend Mr. Bird saying to your other friend Mr. Ear, something about VPNs.

Isn't that a little dodgy though? Don't want my steam account banned.

Prokroustis
06-10-2012, 06:44 PM
OK, say I've been convinced to just try the original. What mods/tools do I need? XComUtil? Extender? What settings should I use? Is there a consensus on this stuff among fans?

I prefer UFOextender, since many things it does better (for example show stats on inventory screen instead of creating statstrings in soldiers' names), and most important things (like soldier placement in craft, saving equipment configuration etc) are the same. Some other optional things (like world terrain randomisation - nice to have since there are some terrain types you may not even see once during your first playthrough) are only in XComUtil. In the end I think UFOextender is the one to have. Also start on the lowest difficulty for your first time. It is still very unforgiving.

(ps. If there is a way to have both someone please enlighten me, although I have tried and failed.)

Jockie
06-10-2012, 06:56 PM
Isn't that a little dodgy though? Don't want my steam account banned.

The steam SSA says this:

“You agree that you will not use IP proxying or other methods to disguise the place of your residence, whether to circumvent geographical restrictions on game content, to purchase at pricing not applicable to your geography, or for any other purpose. If you do this, we may terminate your access to your Account.”

I wrote an annoyed article (http://www.thereticule.com/borderlands-2-out-now-except-if-you-live-in-most-places/) about this stuff when Borderlands 2 released, the consensus seems to be that Steam don't really give a damn unless you're using proxies to get region specific prices. Valve are pretty quiet on the matter, but the fact is it's still in the SSA so you're taking a risk. I've done it in the past, but I'm not willing to lose my Steam account by continuing to do so.

Patrick Swayze
06-10-2012, 07:07 PM
All I see in this thread are console playing cry babies who think they are the elite master gamers who can't learn how to be play a game unless it's spelled out to them in some thirty minute hand holding session. Despicable

BenWah
06-10-2012, 07:24 PM
The original xcom was so good it left me scratching my head why there wasn't any good copycats for decades. I'm not sure many people would have the patience to get into it today though.
Turn based tactical... jagged alliance 2 was good, not so many others

arathain
06-10-2012, 07:25 PM
Having a bad day, Patrick?

Oshada
06-10-2012, 07:36 PM
The steam SSA says this:

“You agree that you will not use IP proxying or other methods to disguise the place of your residence, whether to circumvent geographical restrictions on game content, to purchase at pricing not applicable to your geography, or for any other purpose. If you do this, we may terminate your access to your Account.”

I wrote an annoyed article (http://www.thereticule.com/borderlands-2-out-now-except-if-you-live-in-most-places/) about this stuff when Borderlands 2 released, the consensus seems to be that Steam don't really give a damn unless you're using proxies to get region specific prices. Valve are pretty quiet on the matter, but the fact is it's still in the SSA so you're taking a risk. I've done it in the past, but I'm not willing to lose my Steam account by continuing to do so.

Of course, it has its attendant risks. Isn't it absolutely insane when it's more dangerous to access your legitimately purchased product instead of pirating it?

popej
06-10-2012, 08:16 PM
Apocalypse was the high point for me and I've played every X-com game other than interceptor. UFO & TFTD are freakin' amazing but Apocalypse with it's real time 'space to pause' micro management was the better tactical game. This won't be a common opinion.

vinraith
06-10-2012, 08:27 PM
All I see in this thread are console playing cry babies who think they are the elite master gamers who can't learn how to be play a game unless it's spelled out to them in some thirty minute hand holding session. Despicable

Odd, I don't see any of those. You should really check the dosage on your medication.

Sparkasaurusmex
06-10-2012, 08:48 PM
Of course, it has its attendant risks. Isn't it absolutely insane when it's more dangerous to access your legitimately purchased product instead of pirating it?
Exactly. This policy is anti-Gabe (at least in interviews). They are supposedly fighting piracy by giving better value (which does sound like rhetoric, I guess) but this is quite the opposite.

If you pay for the game, use a proxy just to get the game a tad early, you are threatened of being banned. If you pirate the game you will be (presumably) anonymously playing it. For that reason I believe it's probably an empty threat...if you want to test it.

Heliocentric
06-10-2012, 09:49 PM
All I see in this thread are console playing cry babies who think they are the elite master gamers who can't learn how to be play a game unless it's spelled out to them in some thirty minute hand holding session. Despicable

Yep.... Not even going to comment.

soldant
07-10-2012, 12:43 AM
The original xcom was so good it left me scratching my head why there wasn't any good copycats for decades.
I don't know if XCOM was wildly popular back in the day... I mean it was obviously popular enough to get two sequels, but towards Apocalypse gaming was changing and moving into the FPS era, so it's not surprising that it was a casualty. Even then most of the remakes were bad, because they completely forgot what made XCOM great was the asymmetrical warfare aspect.


Exactly. This policy is anti-Gabe (at least in interviews). They are supposedly fighting piracy by giving better value (which does sound like rhetoric, I guess) but this is quite the opposite.
One thing I love about Valve is that they don't play this region bullshit. I got to buy The Orange Box at the same US price as the people in the US (which was slightly more expensive because our dollar was weaker but still $40AUD better than from a brick and mortar store) and it unlocked at the same time as the US.

In today's digital age these staggered release dates have little physical reason to exist, except to appease the physical stores I guess. XCOM isn't an MMO with server balancing issues or any technical reason to delay the release. I wish publishers wouldn't stop pulling this shit, or I wish Valve would set down a rule that if you distribute on Steam you play by their rules. Surely the platform is big enough and so deeply entrenched that pubs would take notice?

Hypernetic
07-10-2012, 01:46 AM
I don't know if XCOM was wildly popular back in the day... I mean it was obviously popular enough to get two sequels, but towards Apocalypse gaming was changing and moving into the FPS era, so it's not surprising that it was a casualty. Even then most of the remakes were bad, because they completely forgot what made XCOM great was the asymmetrical warfare aspect.


One thing I love about Valve is that they don't play this region bullshit. I got to buy The Orange Box at the same US price as the people in the US (which was slightly more expensive because our dollar was weaker but still $40AUD better than from a brick and mortar store) and it unlocked at the same time as the US.

In today's digital age these staggered release dates have little physical reason to exist, except to appease the physical stores I guess. XCOM isn't an MMO with server balancing issues or any technical reason to delay the release. I wish publishers wouldn't stop pulling this shit, or I wish Valve would set down a rule that if you distribute on Steam you play by their rules. Surely the platform is big enough and so deeply entrenched that pubs would take notice?

You hit the nail on the head, it's because of retailers. Traditionally games release on Tuesday in the US and Friday in Europe. Blame the EU retailers, basically.

TychoCelchuuu
07-10-2012, 02:00 AM
Since I've seen so many threads like this one over the years I've been online, I decided to make some YouTube videos to introduce people to the original X-COM and answer every question anyone could have. Only the first one is done, which covers the UI, but the next two (basic gameplay and what fixes/updates to use on a modern system) are coming soon. Instead of making Vinraith wait for part 3, I'll say that I think UFO Extender and XComUtil together go a long, long way towards smoothing out the few issues the original has. In any case, for those still struggling with the admittedly imposing UI, which is not awful so much as very intimidating and unlabeled, here is my first video:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pzA8dpcveUY

soldant
07-10-2012, 03:49 AM
You hit the nail on the head, it's because of retailers. Traditionally games release on Tuesday in the US and Friday in Europe. Blame the EU retailers, basically.
Can I just blame everyone instead? Because that's an awful lot easier and I'll hit the target anyway.

vinraith
07-10-2012, 03:59 AM
@Tycho

That's enormously helpful, thank you.

Anything I should know about using XComUtil and Extender together? Compatibility issues? Conflicts?

SectoidBro
07-10-2012, 08:04 AM
After digging around, this is how they unlocked Borderlands 2 at the REAL release date: http://www.reddit.com/r/Borderlands/comments/100r72/do_you_live_in_europe_heres_how_to_unlock_the/?sort=new

Same should work for x-com.

QuantaCat
07-10-2012, 08:59 AM
After digging around, this is how they unlocked Borderlands 2 at the REAL release date: http://www.reddit.com/r/Borderlands/comments/100r72/do_you_live_in_europe_heres_how_to_unlock_the/?sort=new

Same should work for x-com.

+1 to you, sir.

duff
07-10-2012, 10:40 AM
You hit the nail on the head, it's because of retailers. Traditionally games release on Tuesday in the US and Friday in Europe. Blame the EU retailers, basically.

I can understand that games might sell better on certain days (though I would have thought Friday would universally be the the best day), but surely they must realise that they will probably lose sales because of piracy caused by regional releases?

QuantaCat
07-10-2012, 10:57 AM
but for the people not buying in brick & mortar stores, its a bad case of the "OMG INTERNET WATERS". I dont think people will go to piracy necessarily, but the thing is, whats stopping anyone from bridging the gap if they own it anyway. Its just a customer inconvenience, quite an unnecessary one. I mean, for the ex box I can understand it, but for PC? nuhuh.

Hypernetic
07-10-2012, 11:16 AM
I can understand that games might sell better on certain days (though I would have thought Friday would universally be the the best day), but surely they must realise that they will probably lose sales because of piracy caused by regional releases?

I think it's a retailers threaten to not carry their games kind of thing. This is why we never really saw the deep discounts we were promised with digital distribution either.

duff
07-10-2012, 01:02 PM
I think it's a retailers threaten to not carry their games kind of thing. This is why we never really saw the deep discounts we were promised with digital distribution either.

The sooner the industry realises that retailers are living on borrowed time the better. Look at what happened with EA and Game in the UK. As soon as consoles and internet connections can support digital distribution easily we can say goodbye to this bollocks.

soldant
07-10-2012, 01:23 PM
This is why we never really saw the deep discounts we were promised with digital distribution either.
Or in some cases, publishers just decided to screw everyone over, like they did here in Australia. When Steam first landed we got the US price, which was a fair bit cheaper than a brick and mortar store, but not by an awful lot because our dollar was weak. So plenty of publishers jacked up the price to "match" street price... by "match" I meant setting it at 89.95 USD to match 89.95 AUD in a store. Which, with the weaker dollar at the time, effectively made it a lot more expensive.


As soon as consoles and internet connections can support digital distribution easily we can say goodbye to this bollocks.
Consoles pretty much already do. As for internet connections... well, fair point, but perhaps we can swap to a system where people pay a few dollars extra or something for a pressed DVD version of the game content files to be shipped out. Even then, the publishers will no doubt play their games to get the last drop of cash out of us that they can. No doubt they'll justify absurd regional pricing by some other means.

Recently here in Australia major questions were asked about the cost of software even factoring in regional differences, particularly from outfits like Adobe and Lenovo. Their answers were "Oh yeah but... it's different" and they proceeded to do exactly what they've been doing since forever. And then the brick-and-mortar retailers, like that idiot Gerry Harvey from the overpriced Harvey Norman chain, bitches because we import stuff a lot cheaper and demands that it all be taxed.

Danny252
07-10-2012, 02:16 PM
Anything I should know about using XComUtil and Extender together? Compatibility issues? Conflicts?

A quick google implies that XComUtil's setup program will detect Extender and ask if you want to use it (XCU messes with files, whilst Extender patches the program during runtime, so they are technically separate things)

arathain
07-10-2012, 02:35 PM
Can I just blame everyone instead? Because that's an awful lot easier and I'll hit the target anyway.

I always blame my cat for everything. I get someone to blame, and she doesn't care, so it works out well for both of us. You can feel free to blame my cat for staggered releases, if you like.

soldant
07-10-2012, 03:21 PM
I always blame my cat for everything. I get someone to blame, and she doesn't care, so it works out well for both of us. You can feel free to blame my cat for staggered releases, if you like.
I will accept such a generous offer. Blame is being deployed as we speak. All the best to your cat.