Review by sabin357

"New to series, but want more"

I must say first that I love strategy games. I also must admit that I have never played an entry in the X-Com universe. With that being said, I can't help but feel like I've been missing out all these years.

Story - This game has entertaining cut scenes that convey the story well enough, although there isn't a lot to the narrative. Story isn't the focus of games like this so I didn't really mind. Chess doesn't require a story either, but it is quite enjoyable.

Graphics - The graphics look nice for the type of game this is. I typically run the game on a 46 inch 1080p HDTV, so I can't speak to higher resolutions. The graphics are simple enough to run on most modern PC's while nice enough to never detract from the game.

Sound - Since I am playing on an HDTV I can't comment much on the sound, since I don't have a home theater system. I run the game through the TV's speakers solely. That limits the quality of the sound somewhat, but I enjoy it all the same. The sound effects fit the art direction well and remind me a bit of older science fiction films from the 60's.

Gameplay – This is where this game truly shines, as a strategy game should. The combat is simple enough to grasp, yet complex as you get an understanding of how the cover system works. Once you get a feel for it, the game becomes an addiction. It has been a long time since I stayed up just to keep playing a game. I enjoy many games, but this one compelled me to play. I sunk 20 hours into it in one week. That might not sound like much, but I work full time, am in college taking 15 hours, and run a side business doing PC repair & custom builds. More than a few hours a week is normally too much for me to manage, but it's worth the lack of sleep in my opinion. As you see your soldiers survive difficult battles they level up and you can choose skills & abilities for them to use. This customization really helps to give personality to your soldiers. In addition to leveling your soldiers you are also responsible for how to expand/allocate your resources and must make tough decisions as you progress. You'll likely find it impossible to make everyone happy. At even given point I had at least 2 nations that were angry with me.

Other thoughts – I am a huge fan of turn based strategy games & expect that I will get many hundreds of hours of fun out of this game. There have been many people talking about issues/glitches in the later stages of the game that can ruin the experience. I don't know if these are game breaking problems, as I have only played about 30 hours so far. Please consider this as you decide how much you value my review.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 11/05/12

Game Release: XCOM: Enemy Unknown (US, 10/08/12)


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