Posts Tagged ‘UFO: Enemy Unknown’

The 50 best strategy games on PC

An entirely objective ranking of the 50 best PC strategy games ever made, now brought up to date with the riches of the last two years. From intricate wargames to soothing peacegames, the broad expanse of the genre contains something for everyone, and we’ve gathered the best of the best. The vast majority are available to buy digitally, a few are free to download and play forever. They’re all brilliant.

Read the rest of this entry »

You Wouldn’t Steal A Skyranger: X-Piratez Is An Outstanding Total Conversion Of UFO/X-COM

In my intro to Silent Storm, I mentioned both modding scenes and UFO (used to distinguish the 1994 original X-COM from the 2012 Firaxis one, and not only out of increasingly sad Eurocentric obstinance) without tying the two together. That, it turns out, was stupid, because X-Piratez, a UFO mod in active development by Dioxine, is the best total conversion for any game I’ve ever played.

Based on OpenXcom Extended, a long-running open source clone of UFO, it takes the story and gameplay structure of the original, and a huge stock of resourcefulness, and turns them into something that’s simultaneously very similar and completely new. The result is a dangerously addictive compound of comfortable old UFO with constant surprise, discovery, and content.

Read the rest of this entry »

2K Finally Shows Up On GOG, X-COM Included

Very late to the party, yesterday 2K finally showed up on GOG.com with a selection of classic games. And what a selection. What on Earth were they waiting for? Anyway, at last you can now get DRM-free working-on-your-PC versions of Freedom Force and its sequel, all the classic X-COMs bundled together, three Railroad Tycoon games, and the awful Sid Meier’s Pirates remake. It also suggests the possibility that the GTA games could finally make their way to the store, although not yet.

Read the rest of this entry »

What Should XCOM 2’s First Expansion Be?

I visited Firaxis in 2014 to see Civilization: Beyond Earth and it was impossible not to wonder which closed doors were hiding the XCOM 2 [official site] team. The game hadn’t been announced but surely somebody was working on a sequel. Would it follow the path of the original games and take to the Lovecraftian depths? Would it reach toward the stars and a battle on various alien homeworlds? Would it take risks or rest comfortably on well-earned laurels?

The answer, as we now know, didn’t quite fit any of the above. These are happy times for the XCOM devotee but I’m hoping for an apocalyptic future. Here are a few ideas and hopes for what the game’s first expansion might be.

Read the rest of this entry »

Someone Has Recreated A Playable XCOM In Excel

An XCOM fan on Reddit has created a rather robust version of XCOM that is played using the spreadsheet software Microsoft Excel. Dubbed EXLCOM, this reimagining of the science fiction turn-based strategy game is far from complete, but that doesn’t mean you can’t sink a few hours enjoying the fact that the program you use to budget your weekly spending allowance can be used to build a fully functional video game. I spoke to its creator about the hows and whys.

Read the rest of this entry »

Impressions: The Triumphs And Struggles Of Xenonauts

Xenonauts is a spiritual successor to UFO: Enemy Unknown, which means that it’s also a spiritual successor to many of the most tense and glorious hours of my teenage years. Following a successful Kickstarter and a period in Early Access, the game has been available for almost a month now. With its loyal approach to the original design, Xenonauts doesn’t step on XCOM’s toes, but I wondered if it could succesfully muscle in on the original game’s territory. Several days of playing later, I have the answer. And some anecdotes about intra-squad romance.

Read the rest of this entry »

The New XCOM: 24 Things We Want

Sectoid!

Firaxis making a new, true X-COM remake is the best gaming news of the year, and I fairly much expect to still be saying that on December 31 2012. Of course, it isn’t that simple. There are things this game needs to do, to get right, if it is to be both a successful homage and a successful modern strategy game in its own right. Here’s what I want from it.
Read the rest of this entry »