For the Love of X-COM

One of the greatest games of all time
June 29, 2011

Awesome intro, got me hooked instantly

What is X-COM?

A groundbreaking strategy game from 1994, that often holds the #1 spot for the best game of all time.

A couple weeks ago, I first came into contact with X-COM. My brother had talked about it but I never gave it any attention until I watched a "Let's play" video on youtube... I got addicted to the series like a season of Venture Bros.

What is it about?

X-COM is inspired by the 1970's hit TV show, UFO

Hit the vid for a cross between Austin Powers and Katy Perry (the series is actually quite good)

Aliens (there are many different species), which you find out are from Mars, are invading Earth and it is up to the secret global organization known as X-COM to stop them!

How is the game played?

This is where X-COM really shines, there are both RTS and turn-based elements.

As the leader you must build bases across the globe to defend against the alien hordes.

You must shoot down the flying saucers worldwide or else you'll lose favor and funding from nations who can make a pact with the aliens.

Each individual base can be built upon and there are countless strategies for doing so-

You have to build a lab to research and then purchase scientists and then buy engineers to manufacture weapons but WAIT you've run out of living space and storage space and it'll take a month to build a new facility.

I like to devote one base to research and another base for manufacturing; but you gotta watch your money.

You have build a group of soldiers which you outfit however you like and they grow in stats after each mission. You can even train them in psionics!

Odds are, he's a goner

Once you shoot down an alien craft, ambush a landed saucer, stumble upon an alien base, or embark on a terror mission- it's time for tactical combat.

Each mission you must disembark from the Skyranger and venture out into the battlefield.

X-COM is well known for it's BRUTAL difficulty-
a single grenade can takeout your whole squad

There is a cool reaction shot game mechanic. Like if you have enough Time-Units remaining, a soldier can shoot an alien when it's not his turn, and vice-versa

Here's a "Let's Play" on a Terror Mission lol

How to win the Game

It's a race against the clock as the aliens hone in on you!

Ultimately, you win through researching an advanced tech tree unlocked by alien tech and captured aliens.

You must also capture an alien commander (using a stun rod) for interrogation

If you can build an Avenger to take you, then you're headed to Mars for the final battle at Cydonia!

I finally beat X-COM... on beginner lol

In Conclusion

X-COM is brilliant! Even though I just learned of its existence, it was quickly become one of my new favorite games.

It's a complete RUSH as your hand picked soldiers get shot at by a Sectoid on a rooftop or get chased by a Chryssalid.

There are a couple sequels but I would only recommend Terror from the Deep

Want a challenge? Give X-COM a go
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