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XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement

We now have the official press release for XCOM: Enemy Unknown, which offers a few more details on what to expect from the just-revealed game:

New York, NY – January 5, 2012–2K Games announced today that Firaxis Games, the creative team behind the iconic Sid Meier’s Civilization® franchise, is developing XCOM: Enemy Unknown, an action strategy title that is planned for release in fall 2012. XCOM: Enemy Unknown will be instantly recognizable to fans of the original X-COM, while breaking new ground in strategy games for today’s console and Windows PC gamers. With equal emphasis on deep strategy and intense tactical combat, XCOM: Enemy Unknown will place players in control of a secret paramilitary organization called XCOM. As the XCOM commander, players will defend against a terrifying global alien invasion by managing resources, advancing technologies, and overseeing combat strategies and individual unit tactics.

“We’re looking forward to building upon the core gameplay experiences that fans of the original X-COM love, while introducing the franchise to a new generation,” said Sarah Anderson, senior vice president of marketing for 2K. “With Firaxis’ XCOM: Enemy Unknown and 2K Marin’s upcoming XCOM, 2K Games will be offering two different gameplay experiences drawing from the classic X-COM universe. Each game offers a unique XCOM experience in different genres, as envisioned by two different studios with unique creative visions.”

Released in 1993, the original X-COM is widely regarded as one of the best games ever made and has now been re-imagined by the strategy experts at Firaxis Games. XCOM: Enemy Unknown will expand on that legacy with an entirely new invasion story, enemies and technologies to fight aliens and defend Earth. Players will control the fate of the human race through researching alien technologies, creating and managing a fully operational base, planning combat missions and controlling soldier movement in battle.

“It’s been a dream of ours to recreate X-COM with our unique creative vision. We’re huge fans of the original game and it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to re-envision a game that is as beloved as X-COM,” said Steve Martin, president of Firaxis Games. “We were careful to keep XCOM: Enemy Unknown true to the elements that made X-COM such a revered game while delivering an entirely new story and gameplay experience for both die-hard X-COM fans and newcomers to the franchise.”

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41. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 7, 2012, 02:15 Jerykk
 
I agree with Beamer here. Don't expect this game to have even half the budget or marketing of the FPS. I can almost guarantee this will be a lower-budget downloadable title with no physical release and relatively subdued marketing. If anything, the game itself is likely 2K's way of marketing the FPS by getting fans to care about the series again.  
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40. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 19:32 Sepharo
 
Beamer did you do something similar when you were working in the game industry?  
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39. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 12:46 Prez
 
Fair enough. I guess my main point is that I'm glad that there are still companies which are still willing to try the illogical (turn-based games in a FPS/RTS-dominated industry??? Crazy talk!!) and make it work. If every company operated like Activision there would never have been a Simcity or a Magic Carpet. Or any of the other hundreds of brilliant illogical game concepts.

In this day and age, that simply remaking an insanely popular and brilliant turn-based game seems so illogical is telling of how little vision, adventure, and creativity is left in an industry that once defined creativity.
 
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38. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 11:59 Beamer
 
Prez wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 15:59:
Beamer:

Don't take offense by this, but if you work in the games industry I hope it's not in a creative capacity. You don't show any vision at all (at least on this forum) and always deal in cold numbers. It was you, after all, that told me no company would opt to make a Turn-based X-COM sequel over a FPS because of the money. It may not sell as well as a FPS (then again it could - Firaxis, after all), but there's little doubt in my mind this one will be a better game.

Prez, and was I wrong? How is the property being predominantly used? In order to make a strategy title they first made an FPS.

Anyway, I appreciate you saying "at least on this forum." I do not currently work in the video game industry, but to give a bit on my job:
25% is simple brainstorming/think-tanking. This is 100% creative. I find growth strategies.
25% is a variation of that. It's problem solving. I find what the company is doing wrong, or not doing well enough. I find the exact reason for that. I tell people to fix that.
50% is making people make decisions. It's a less jerky version of how I post here. It's making people see things from the eyes of other people (and I'm the guy that's known for repeatedly saying "and that benefits the consumer how?")

For instance, let's say I'm working with a CGP company that does oral care. Their customers (e.g., grocery stores, drug stores, etc.) are expecting a product revision in 10 months, and expecting 100,000 units. Their competitors will be refreshing their product at the same time. The company has a budget of $1 million for the revision.
-R&D thinks they are on the verge of a breakthrough that will make the product much more effective and therefore far better for consumers. They're 80% sure they can have this ready in 9 months for $700k, and 60% sure they can have it ready in 7 months for $800k.
-Marketing has spoken with consumers and found they're demanding new flavors. The product is already the most effective, and making a new formula won't necessary result in more sales, but expanding flavors will. New flavors will take 6 months and $500k, but will take all of R&Ds time. The new formula, marketing argues, should be the following revision, not the immediate one.
-Logistics wants new packaging. New packaging will make the product cheaper to ship and take less shelf space, which the customer is demanding. Marketing is behind this, too, as consumers complain that the current packaging isn't intuitive and it's too hard to get the final 10% of the product out. New packaging will cost a the full $1 million and take 4 months to develop.
-Manufacturing doesn't give a damn what happens, they just need to know soon. If there's new packaging they need to buy entire new machinery. if there's a new formula they may need new machinery. They're also close to capacity so need to know new volume estimates so that they know what kind of expansion they need and how much of the old machinery they need to purchase, if any. It also takes them a month to ramp up after any changes and they can only produce at 75,000 units per month, so they need two and a half months if they can expect to hit that 100,000 unit commitment made to the customers.

My job is solving this. I don't make the decisions, but I make every single person stop caring only about their own problems and understand what every other group cares about and why. I help them prioritize what they actually care about and, hopefully, see past their own incentive and do what's best for the company as a whole, which is usually what's best for the consumer, which is rarely what anyone actually gets their performance review or bonus on.
Which is why it drives me nuts when some posters here only care about their own crap.
 
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37. Please don't screw it up Jan 6, 2012, 10:46 Bard
 
Such a great game.

This would be perfect for iPad too.
 
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36. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 09:14 gilly775
 
Donkey_Punch wrote on Jan 6, 2012, 04:27:
Pardon me but please look away as a full grown man loses his cool...holy fuckity fuck shit fuckity wow!!

I need this game now!


Update: After reading the comments I came across info for an indie game called Xenonauts. Didn't know about it until now. What do other people think of Xenonauts? I am really tempted to spend the $20 and invest in the game but now that Firaxis has entered the arena will this kill the little guys like Xenonauts? Will it get finished?

http://www.xenonauts.com/

I preordered it just because I love games like this and the Devs are hard at work on it. With my the early build copy that's out, it's nowhere near being done, but they are doing a great job of communicating what's being added and what they are doing.
 
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35. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 08:42 Ledge
 
Yosemite Sam wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 17:56:
Nice to hear they are remaking XCOM the way it should be. Dunno about Firaxis though, CIV5 was dumbed down for the masses and the AI blows chunks.

"Released in 1993, the original X-COM is widely regarded as one of the best games ever made"

Riiiight, I want what they are smoking, hell it isnt even the best game of 1993... Xwing, Doom, Syndicate, Simcity 2000, Master of Orion, Privateer... and I personally hated it but the best selling game ever Myst was also released in 93.

Myst wasnt even really a game. more like a puzzle slideshow. but i guess graphics sold it. in the same vein as 7th Guest.
at least with xcom you had solid gameplay over "wood inducing" graphics.

 
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34. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 04:27 Donkey_Punch
 
Pardon me but please look away as a full grown man loses his cool...holy fuckity fuck shit fuckity wow!!

I need this game now!


Update: After reading the comments I came across info for an indie game called Xenonauts. Didn't know about it until now. What do other people think of Xenonauts? I am really tempted to spend the $20 and invest in the game but now that Firaxis has entered the arena will this kill the little guys like Xenonauts? Will it get finished?

http://www.xenonauts.com/

This comment was edited on Jan 6, 2012, 06:18.
 
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33. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 02:12 Dirwulf
 

I smell Alpha Centauri in an X-Com skin.

 
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32. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 02:06 Yuioup
 
Wait a minute! Wasn't there already an X-Com game in the works?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X-com#Series_reboot

 
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31. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 6, 2012, 00:55 Jerykk
 
Riiiight, I want what they are smoking, hell it isnt even the best game of 1993... Xwing, Doom, Syndicate, Simcity 2000, Master of Orion, Privateer... and I personally hated it but the best selling game ever Myst was also released in 93.

I hate to tell you but Myst lost that title a long time ago. It sold about 6 million units, which was very impressive at the time but has since been surpassed by many titles. Hell, CoD has surpassed that every year since CoD4. In fact, Myst never even had that title. It was the best-selling CD-ROM game for a while but not the best-selling game. The original Super Mario Bros sold over 40 million units.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_video_games

Back on topic, I'm guessing this will be a downloadable title. I just don't see 2K spending big bucks on a turn-based strategy game, especially a multiplatform one. That's not to say that a low-to-moderate budget is a bad thing. I think the fact that it's being released on consoles is the bad thing.

This comment was edited on Jan 6, 2012, 01:06.
 
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30. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 22:44 Fantaz
 
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 19:53:
That's just EA renaming an existing studio (Victory Games), which I think is a really sleazy move. C&C:G2 has NOTHING to do with the Bioware that is famous for games like Mass Effect and Dragon's Age.

Ah, that I didn't know... should probably inform the people on other forums who think that Bioware will bring RPG elements in the C&C universe.
 
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29. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 22:29 MoreLuckThanSkill
 
Hrm, has anybody actually read that whole article?

It says near the bottom, XCOM:Enemy Unknown, for the Xbox360, PS3 and PC...

Should I start the consolitis fear mongering, or has it already begun? Not that you can't make a turn based game for a console, obviously, but I cringed a little when I read that.

I'd cross my fingers, but they are already worn out from past hype/plateau/reality rollercoasters.

 
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28. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 21:19 theyarecomingforyou
 
In terms of remakes I'd rather see Tie Fighter, Baldies and Transport Tycoon. All have seen games with similar concepts follow in their place but none with the same formula that made them so great.

Yosemite Sam wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 17:56:
Nice to hear they are remaking XCOM the way it should be. Dunno about Firaxis though, CIV5 was dumbed down for the masses and the AI blows chunks.
I completely disagree. I was a huge fan of the earlier games but Civ5 won me over immediately. Sure they made some changes but that's the point of a sequel - you can't just keep remaking the same game. What's the point? Are you telling me that the stacked-spam combat of CivIV was really better? Or that religion really added to the game? Or that the city management was any good? Everybody seems to have rose-tinted specs on because CivIV was far from perfect; and CivV isn't perfect either. Don't forget that CivIV before the expansions was a very different game - the expansions made it and some of the patches made substantial changes to the gameplay.

Also, you can't dumb down Civilization "for the masses" - it's a niche genre. If they lose their core audience they have no viable audience. Making a game more accessible isn't the same as dumbing it down. And most of the changes were made to address weaknesses of the previous games. The game didn't appeal to you? Fine. But I love it.

Cutter wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 19:59:
Hell, I didn't even know there was a Colonization for Civ 4 untill recently. How I missed that one boggles my mind.
Well, it was actually a standalone title rather than an addon. Unfortunately they broke the end-game (the only viable strategies were exploits) and the trading system had some serious bugs, as well as some design issues.
 
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27. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 20:25 Flatline
 
Yosemite Sam wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 17:56:
Nice to hear they are remaking XCOM the way it should be. Dunno about Firaxis though, CIV5 was dumbed down for the masses and the AI blows chunks.

"Released in 1993, the original X-COM is widely regarded as one of the best games ever made"

Riiiight, I want what they are smoking, hell it isnt even the best game of 1993... Xwing, Doom, Syndicate, Simcity 2000, Master of Orion, Privateer... and I personally hated it but the best selling game ever Myst was also released in 93.

X-Com traditionally scores in the top 10, and usually in the top 5, video games of all time. It consistently outscores Syndicate, Simcity 2000, MOO, and Privateer. Only usually Doom gets higher marks (X-Wing is usually lumped in with TIE fighter, which was the superior of the two games).

Oh, and I don't know how high you set the AI in Civ 5, but at the higher levels it was pretty brutal.
 
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26. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 20:04 Dev
 
I'm glad 2k games decided to make both, and not just a FPS.

Firaxis, I think they tend to do more strategy type stuff than tactical, so we'll see how that goes.
 
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25. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 20:04 gilly775
 
Yosemite Sam wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 17:56:
Nice to hear they are remaking XCOM the way it should be. Dunno about Firaxis though, CIV5 was dumbed down for the masses and the AI blows chunks.

You do realize that Firaxis made other games that weren't "dumbed down," right? And I'm not sure if you've moved the difficulty slider over to the far right, but the AI pretty much blows you to chunks attempting to beat it...
 
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24. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 19:59 Cutter
 
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 19:53:
Vulkan wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 18:00:
The only thing I want to know is: Will this be a PC only title or will it also be released for consoles? Because if it's the latter I'm just gonna go postal right now.
It says "for today's console and Windows PC gamers".

Fantaz wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 15:54:
Bioware doing the next C&C Generals...
That's just EA renaming an existing studio (Victory Games), which I think is a really sleazy move. C&C:G2 has NOTHING to do with the Bioware that is famous for games like Mass Effect and Dragon's Age.

Anyway, at least this is being made by a decent studio with a proven track record. I just hope it will be more like the quality of Civ V than Civ IV: Colonization, which was half-baked and largely broken.

I never played the Civ 4 Colonization version but I adored the original and used to play it all the time. Hell, I didn't even know there was a Colonization for Civ 4 untill recently. How I missed that one boggles my mind.

Anyway, my fave Xcom was Terror from teh Deep so if they could utilize elements of that I'll be happy as a pig in poo.
 
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23. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 19:53 theyarecomingforyou
 
Vulkan wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 18:00:
The only thing I want to know is: Will this be a PC only title or will it also be released for consoles? Because if it's the latter I'm just gonna go postal right now.
It says "for today's console and Windows PC gamers".

Fantaz wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 15:54:
Bioware doing the next C&C Generals...
That's just EA renaming an existing studio (Victory Games), which I think is a really sleazy move. C&C:G2 has NOTHING to do with the Bioware that is famous for games like Mass Effect and Dragon's Age.

Anyway, at least this is being made by a decent studio with a proven track record. I just hope it will be more like the quality of Civ V than Civ IV: Colonization, which was half-baked and largely broken.
 
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22. Re: XCOM: Enemy Unknown Official Announcement Jan 5, 2012, 19:27 SimplyMonk
 
CommunistHamster wrote on Jan 5, 2012, 16:08:
...AAA Dwarf Fortress? ...

I don't think this could ever be done faithfully by a AAA company, sadly. Minecraft/Terraria is the closest I think we'll ever see (and any mods to said games). Maybe some AAA company will get it into their heads to try and cash in on the Minecraft craze, but I'm sure the final results would make me sad.
 
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