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XCOM: Enemy Unknown Preview: Unique Gameplay Awaits You

XCOM: Enemy Unknown Preview: Unique Gameplay Awaits You


XCOM: Enemy Unknown Preview: Unique Gameplay Awaits You

XCOM: Enemy Unknown, a real time strategy game, wasn’t a title I paid too much attention to until hearing about it from a colleague of mine who witnessed a demo at this year’s E3. I quickly became more interested in the game once I heard more details and now I’m pretty excited about its release on October 9th. A full review will be coming soon.

Last week I had the opportunity to partake in a conference call with the developers of the game – Jake Solomon, Lead Designer and Garth DeAngelis, Producer of XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Focusing on a lot of what Jake had to say, one of the key points that I picked up in this conference call and in prior interviews, is his love for the original 1994 version of XCOM. I loved hearing him talk about how his career was basically shaped by that one game and that he’s in the position that he is today because of that game. When you hear stories like that you should begin to feel confident about that game’s probable success. I would imagine that same confidence continues to exist for those who were fans of the original game as well, knowing that it’s in good hands with someone who respected the previous title as much as he did. That type of thing always makes me interested in seeing how a game turns out, knowing that there is a deep passion for a game by those working on it.

I never had the opportunity to play the original game, but they say that there hasn’t been anything quite like that game since it released. What they have created today with XCOM: Enemy Unknown is another completely unique experience with nothing else like it…except the original XCOM. With their new version of the game, they wanted it to be a much more tactical experience compared to the 1994 version, including a deep tactical system that they have built for the game. As you create and grow your XCOM headquarters, you will recruit, customize and build your unique soldiers and manage personnel as you detect and intercept the alien threat. Using tactical combat you will direct your squads in turn-based ground battles as well as deploy air units.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown Trailer – The Base

One of the things that interest me the most with XCOM: Enemy Unknown is that it’s all about the consequences. We were told in the conference call that the choices that you make have consequences and that is something that sets this game apart from other games. You will be able to create these “sort-of” bonds with each one of your individual soldiers – each given a random name or name of your choice. One of the consequences that this game has is perma-death. If you aren’t careful and you send your guys into dangerous and unfavorable positions, it could be the end of those soldiers. You won’t be able to get them back if they die. It feels as if they took the sense of a strategy game and made it a lot more personal which sets for a very unique aspect and connection with the game as you play. Jake Solomon said that this will be a much more intimate experience for a strategy game.

You will be able to create your own unique experience when you play XCOM: Enemy Unknown, an experience that will be different each time you play. It all starts with your headquarters and what it is you decide to create with your facilities and how you upgrade your troops. Every time you play this game it’ll be a very random and unique experience. Clearly, replayability looks to be a huge favorable factor with this game. A game that they say will take you 15-20 hours to complete on normal, but if you play it on the harder “classic” difficulty, it will take you a lot longer and also give you a more unique feeling in addition. And no matter what difficulty you decide to play on at first, they mention that the game will do whatever it can to throw you off your plan to save the world. It sure sounds like a fun challenge lies ahead for every one of us.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown Live Gameplay with Jake, Casey, and Greg

Multiplayer support looks to really help improve the replay factor as well. You will be able to play as either aliens or soldiers in a unique online experience. The opportunity to play as the aliens in multiplayer will add a new and fun element as you learn that the aliens have “exciting” powers that you will be able to use. No matter who you end up playing with, Solomon and DeAngelis mentioned how one party doesn’t have an edge over the other and that if you upgrade one of the soldiers to the highest ability they may be the stronger person in the game. It’s something for us all to find out and experiment ourselves come October 9th.

After seeing all the information that is already out there and then participating in the conference call, I can say with ease that I absolutely can’t wait to get my hands on this game. I’m all hyped up on this title now and I can’t wait to begin my own unique experiences.

Andrew Stevens Andrew Stevens is a Guest Editor at FanBolt for Gaming and Technology. He has over 8 years of experience working within the gaming industry which includes time at Bethesda Softworks. His unique view of the industry and passion for gaming can be found within each one of his editorials. Andrew also loves PC gaming and enjoys tinkering with new hardware. He also can’t get enough speed when it comes to racing games and doesn’t mind navigating through swarms of bullets in any shmup. He considers Rez as the greatest game ever. Andrew's opinions are his own and do not reflect the opinions of his place of employment.


  1. Why does someone have the job as a game reviewer when he doesn’t even know about the original Xcom? That’s like hiring someone as a chef when he has never heard of a knife. Seriously, that should disqualify anyone from reviewing games


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