2K Games announces that XCOM: Enemy Unknown is now available in North America via retail and Steam, and Firaxis' action/strategy will be available internationally on October 12th. Some screenshots and a launch trailer support the release, and a playable demo of the Windows edition was released a couple of weeks ago on Steam (an Xbox 360 demo is likewise available, while a PS3 demo is still in the works). Here's word:
2K Games and Firaxis Games announced today that XCOM®: Enemy Unknown is now available in North America and will be available internationally on October 12, 2012 for Windows PC, the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system. The game already has critics raving, with Game Informer stating that XCOM: Enemy Unknown is “a singular achievement that every gamer deserves to experience” and rating the game 9.5 out of 10, earning “Game of the Month” honors in the November 2012 issue.
“XCOM: Enemy Unknown revives the XCOM franchise, staying true to what fans loved in the original game while evolving and growing the experience to appeal to all gamers,” said Sarah Anderson, senior vice president of marketing for 2K. “Combining intense action and strategy, XCOM: Enemy Unknown is an experience unlike any other on the market, and one that no gamer will want to miss.”
Gamers who pre-ordered XCOM: Enemy Unknown and those who purchase the game for a limited time at launch will receive the launch bonus which includes the Elite Soldier Pack. The Elite Soldier Pack will provide the ultimate tools for soldier customization in XCOM: Enemy Unknown, including:
Classic X-COM soldier: Players will instantly receive a new recruit in their barracks inspired by the original X-COM: UFO Defense. The iconic soldier with the blonde, flattop hairstyle will return fully modernized.
Soldier Deco packs: Players can customize their soldier with several aesthetic upgrades to armor suits, including the new Hyperion and Reaper soldier armor kits.
Complete color customization: A variety of colors and tints for all armor sets in the game allow players complete control to customize their squad’s look.
A special edition of XCOM: Enemy Unknown for Windows PC (MSRP $59.99) will be available at participating retail locations. This special edition will contain a copy of the game for Windows PC and a number of unique XCOM items, including an art book; fold-out poster of the XCOM headquarters; XCOM insignia patch; and a collection of digital bonus assets such as desktop wallpaper, soundtrack and more. A digital version of XCOM: Enemy Unknown can be purchased from participating digital retailers for MSRP $49.99.
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SpectralMeat wrote on Oct 9, 2012, 15:07: All these different release dates in different Countries did not make much sense back in the day either but these days with 99% of sales on PC being digital distribution it is just down right stupid to have different dates set for different Countries.
You can unlock the game with a VPN from a different Country anyways but I don't understand the concept behind holding the games back several days depending on where you live. What gives?
They made sense back in the day. Media was released the day it came to stores. Different countries had different shipping infrastructures so they couldn't guarantee deliveries on the same day. All these infrastructures were built long before anyone had any idea things came out on different days (heck, they were built when movies didn't even have national release dates.) Changing that was impossible, as the infrastructures were largely small businesses.
The other side is marketing. You want to build up an interest and get people out to buy something. If someone walks into a store expecting to buy one thing and it isn't there they usually get pretty annoyed and often don't return to buy it, either because they bought something else, forgot, or just never got the motivation again. So you don't want to build up your promotions unless you know specifically what date something will be available at all points of sale in a region.
Yeah, you can VPN to fake being in a country, but how many people do that? Right now the assumptions are that the B&M needs are too strong (for PC games this is rapidly declining) and that people still get their information from TV/Print, not the internet, so people are more aware of a set day they expect things in their country and there aren't an enormous amount of people realizing that their buddy in a different country is already playing.
Both those ideas are rapidly falling away. Remember Mortal Monday? Only a matter of time before someone does a similar idea with a major global release date that they loudly trumpet, and it will do a lot to break through to make that more common.