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  1. #1
    Activated Node Oathbreaker's Avatar
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    [Venting] Finally beat X-Com (1994 ed.) again after a decade or so.

    Ugh that was one hell of a slog to the end.

    Self-nerfs:
    Veteran
    No plasma technology because I dislike the power and like the laser stuff better anyway.
    No use of psionics (but use XcomUtil with Psi Labs to figure out who has what Psi Strength for convenience/cheating).
    Only two bases (which is all you really need anyway).
    No save-scumming, except outside of combat and only to avoid bugs, and get another shot at end missions.
    No sacrificing rookies, I'm too much of an RP'er at heart, and I'd never do it irl to my soldiers.
    No grenade chains except in extraordinary circumstances (lol three mutons right next to Skyranger ramp at start of terror mission).
    Accept all terror missions whether day or night.
    No farming alien bases.
    No digging through walls with Blaster bombs. No camping on base missions. No "playing it safe."
    No experience or reaction training.
    No HWP because I like tactical squad-based games, not tactical tank games. It's all about your dudes. People. Not machines.

    Attempts:
    1. Got past about 20-some battles and found the minimized-interceptor bug. No prior save to go back to - restart everything!
    2. Got smoked hard on final mission. LOL blaster bomb. Reload after learning my lesson on keeping lots of prior saves.
    3. Work on psi strength and try again, more cautiously. LOL blaster bomb to the face in the starting lift on last battle.
    4. Ok, let's go agai... lol mind control and panic and chryssalids.
    5. Ok, this time everyone will have 60+ psi strengths. Only a few low-bravery types. A few rookies along on final missions. Dammit lost my one blaster launcher in the transition to last battle map. LOL blaster bomb takes out half the crew. Chryssalids. 3 Zombies behind me on the final assault. Two guys kill ten aliens and pick up Hi-Explosives and some blaster bombs/launchers from the aliens that come as they go up and down the lift. One other mc'd. One other panics carrying a primed Hi-Ex. Two others die entering brain room but manage to grenade a few aliens while dying. Blaster bomb kills brain - three guys left of a crew of 26.

    DONE. Win. Haven't seen those victory screens in ten years or more. Amazing quality for their age. That was a game that ends in catharsis and feeling good about a player-driven story of battles and desperate combats. Nothing that comes easy is ever worth much.

    /rant off

    One hell of a campaign. Now I just wish XCOMEU came standard with base defense missions and no shooting through walls or through friendly soldiers on reaction fire and the expac didn't have a silly new 'Meld' resource. But I will play it, and ofc buy the expac when it's on sale.

    So, assuming you've read all this, what's your biggest gaming achievement? Mine was probably D2X HC SP Hell's Ancients. Or pulling off a move as feral in WoW open pvp that I'd only seen in a video. Run-jump-spin-shred-spin repeatedly.

    Now for playing some Path of Exile.

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus
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    I beat it about a year ago or so for the first time, I think on difficulty 3 or 4. It ended up being a blitz game. No base defense, no psi training. Took me 2 alien base invasions to nab a commander. The first one base invasion did not end well. Going Iron Man so no save reloading. Then off to Mars I went with a tank and like 2 flying suits. I happened to land near the elevator on the surface and had light alien aggression. Get down below and a nice hole was punched to the alien brain with blaster launchers.

  3. #3
    Activated Node Themadcow's Avatar
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    Sacrificing red-shirts with stuff like OpenXcom is just made sooo easy that it's almost impossible to resist the urge to shuffle them towards the ramp. If sacrificing no-name rookies to protect your bezzie mates isn't RPing then I'm not sure what is :D

    One of my greatest triumphs in gaming was also WoW when my guild took down pre-nerf Brutallus in Burning Crusade with just 1 man left standing. After an insane amount of deaths against that guy it just felt like one big nerdgasm when the big dog hit the ground. On a solo note, soloing one of the Heroic instance bosses (well, from 90%) after he wiped the rest of the party was pretty epic as well - and all the better as the rest of my party had to wait 20 minutes for me to finish the job.

  4. #4
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus coldvvvave's Avatar
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    X-com is one of my favourite games of all time... but I savescummed through it every time both combat and global. Maybe next time will I do the Iron Man game. Maybe.
    Quote Originally Posted by Drake Sigar View Post
    You are an enemy of gaming.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by coldvvvave View Post
    X-com is one of my favourite games of all time... but I savescummed through it every time both combat and global. Maybe next time will I do the Iron Man game. Maybe.
    Xcom was one of the games where I got to hate compulsive saving. I never did a proper Iron Man on it but I did stop saving every damn turn.

    That is why I am not averse to checkpoints in games, if they are spaced well.

  6. #6
    Activated Node Oathbreaker's Avatar
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    Ironman and Hardcore are great ideas. Problem is with bugs and balance issues and blaster shots from the dark when you the player do everything right and you still get messed up. Games aren't perfect, therefore need saves you can reload from. Case in point - Diablo 3. There's simply no way to reliably play Hardcore with an internet connection that can rubberband you or disconnect you anytime. Don't bother.

  7. #7
    Activated Node Themadcow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oathbreaker View Post
    blaster shots from the dark when you the player do everything right and you still get messed up.
    ...but that's the point isn't it? And a jolly good reason to get another truckload of red-shirts bussed in to the base for 'assessment'.

    I sometimes find X-Com easier to play if I completely stop caring about the soldiers and then get pleasantly surprised if one of them makes it all the way to near the end alive.

  8. #8
    Network Hub Warduke's Avatar
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    How does the original hold up? Is it still worth putting some time in on? I've never played it but have had friends that have said it's one of their all time faves.

  9. #9
    Vector Jams O'Donnell's Avatar
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    UFO: Enemy Unknown was one of my first PC games (I honestly can't remember if I played it before X-Wing or after), and I somehow managed to beat it without much trouble. Any time I've tried to replay it as an adult it's gone horribly, horribly wrong.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warduke View Post
    How does the original hold up? Is it still worth putting some time in on? I've never played it but have had friends that have said it's one of their all time faves.
    It depends on your resistance to ancient UIs, aged graphics and terrible sound effects. It is quite different from the new game, it has much more flexible movement mechanics, although it does not have a pronounced cover system. It has some annoying elements, like forcing you to manually rearrange inventory before every mission because the game does not save it at all and just gives out guns at random. It has some quite ridiculous imbalances which can make the game very easy or very hard, depending on circumstances. It has a much less scripted campaign - it has almost exactly the same path, but it's not forced on you in the shape of "quests". Maps are procedurally generated out of predefined blocks, but IMO they are much less varied than the pre-made maps in X-COM:EU.

    If you are interested in this game, you can try X-com Apocalypse or Xenonauts. Apocalypse is basically the same engine but has many improvements and much more environment variety. Xenonauts is a modern very faithful remake. If any of those games strike you as fantastic, you can try the old X-com.

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Kelron's Avatar
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    Clones of the original are worth playing, I'm not sure I'd actually want to play the original itself again. If only because it doesn't save soldier loadouts.

  12. #12
    Activated Node Oathbreaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kelron View Post
    Clones of the original are worth playing, I'm not sure I'd actually want to play the original itself again. If only because it doesn't save soldier loadouts.
    XcomUtil partially fixes that, to the point where it's not really an issue mostly, esp. with soldier stat strings making it fairly easy to fix loadout issues.

    As far as how the original holds up - it's really only for bragging rights and nostalgia these days. It's horribly badly balanced, laser weapons are underpowered, there's bugs and dead ends in research. But oh the memories. It also features NOT shooting through walls and friendly units, something which XCOMEU missed. And base defense missions. How you lay out your base is sometimes of supreme importance. You can take an unlucky attack on your base within minutes of starting the game, or it might never come.

  13. #13
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    Apocalypse was my favourite of the series. The balancing is excellent and the real time mode actually works with liberal use of the pause key to dish out commands. I believe some criticise it for it's break from canon but in terms of gameplay it only built on the good bits from the original.

    I've spent many hours in Apocalypse.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by popej View Post
    Apocalypse was my favourite of the series. The balancing is excellent and the real time mode actually works with liberal use of the pause key to dish out commands. I believe some criticise it for it's break from canon but in terms of gameplay it only built on the good bits from the original.
    One can always never use the real time mode. I did not touch it during my first playthrough. Although later I learned it is quite useful for speeding things up in some tedious mop-up missions.

  15. #15
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    It was great to see destruction out in the city with your floating cars.

    Or you had to choice to externally destroy buildings or go in a building and throw around incendiary bombs, to tell that corporation you mean business.

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