Geplaatst: 14 april
define: ambiguousXCOM is a good game. And it could be soooo much better. Enter: a mod for the rescue.
The game offers a strategical management-layer with a time-compression feature and turn-based tactical missions in which you have to fight aliens with your squads. This combination works well and keeps you coming back. It starts great: there is a lot to do (research, building equipment, managing your soldiers...), the slick interface is doing its magic, you get your first valuable veterans, your abilities increase and everything is new and shiny. Nice pace and a good sense of progression.
And then you notice the first oddities: the line-of-sight system is a joke. This game creates its very own reality and logic, but it's easy enough to adapt to this. You will get a feeling for this weird reality. The cover system works despite
being laughable at times and being far from realistic.
This game has countless little weaknesses. The strategic layer suffers a bit from being extremely streamlined. The game is keeping you busy with artificial difficulty and urgency. The panic system is erratic and a big cluster♥♥♥♥ of frustrating randomness. I did not feel threatened by aliens assaulting Earth but screwed by the developers. The late-game is lacking in content, as if they made the game and then cut away the "Enemy Within" expansion. It's disappointing and left me behind unsatisfied.
Still I highly recommend the game despite all its weaknesses. It's a flawed gem and it can really suck you in. The tactical missions are exciting and reward bold moves just as much as they have a tendency to punish you for not being careful. Here eliminating the randomness becomes a satisfying challenge (destroy the cover first, finish off the enemy AFTER). It gives you perks and equipment to react to new threats and keeps things interesting. On the strategical layer the rigid schedule of scripted events makes for a more beginner-friendly experience. Many people will appreciate the ease that comes with a somewhat predictable course of events. Like it always is: the strengths of the game really highlight the weaknesses. And at the end of the day it is among the limited number of games i have finished more than once without ever being bored. Just don't expect a faithful recreation of the old XCOM games.
The expansion addresses the lack of content, but most problems persist. All that being said: I highly recommend the mod "Long War" (EW required!). It overhauls the game in many aspects. It will give you a much deeper experience. It turns XCOM from an "Invasion Simulator Light
" into a well thought out strategy game with a great sense of consequence. It forces you to think and actually punishes you for messing up. But it also gives you the chance to undo your mistakes. And suddenly you really feel like you are defending Earth against terrifying aliens. It's what veterans crave!