Author Topic: XCOM Games  (Read 933 times)

XCOM Games
« on: October 13, 2016, 12:56:11 AM »
They're fucking magic, aren't they? I treated myself to XCOM 2, and have really been enjoying it, but have also been playing Enemy Unknown again. I love that there's a really different dynamic in each, so when I get annoyed at having to rush and be aggressive, I can go back to my beautiful Archangel Squadsight snipers in EU.

I've always wanted to get Enemy Within, but couldn't justify paying for what was supposed to be glorified DLC. Well, heads-up, you can get it on Xbox for 6 quid at the minute, and its backwards compatible, just like EU. (Check out the 360 sale.)

It's more different than I expected, sitting comfortably between EU and X2 in approach. Meld means you can find yourself getting pushed out of just sitting in overwatch killzones, for the most part. Just about to do my first Exalt mission, exciting. Been playing it loads and still don't have my genetics lab set up, but pretty happy with my support mech.

Just really, really glad these games are available on console, as they're pretty niche, sadly, but they're such a wildly satisfying and tense chess game.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2016, 02:37:39 AM »
I have never played these games, but am looking for a new genre to get into. I gather the Enemy Unknown Complete Edition (essentially base game plus all DLCs including Enemy Within) is a good place to start?


Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2016, 03:09:34 AM »
Yeah, that sounds awesome, especially if you're on PC as there are tons of mods available, such as Long War.

Thursday: didn't want to bump that other thread, so to respond here, I've no idea if consoles will get any XCOM 2 mods. It seems unlikely, but...who knows? I'd be over the moon if it happened.

I've played these games on and off for years, as well as the originals, which I can't really remember. You're going to love them, and find yourself coming back to them periodically, so that pack sounds like a great investment. I know you'll really enjoy the harder modes and Ironman difficulty (which limits you to one save file.)

It's a great rule of thumb to always customise your soldiers, so you get more attached to them, and it's even more heart-breaking when they die. Just blast through your first couple of playthroughs on normal, trying out different builds, and try not to look shit up. Try and take a rookie along on easy missions so you build up a decent squad full of back-ups, to cover wounds and deaths.

I'll be interested to hear how you get on.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2016, 09:37:57 AM »
They gave away soon recently on the Xbox, someone told me that Xcom: enemy unknown is a miles better game.

So I bought it on his advice,Its exactly the same fucking game.

Neomod

  • Oh my genitals | I'm a janitor
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2016, 09:50:30 AM »
I bought Xcom Unknown[nb]£3[/nb] a week before it was a freebie on xbox gold but so far have only played the tutorial. I really should get into it as I loved playing lazer squad back in the day on th c64/Amiga.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2016, 10:17:12 AM »
Is it any good on iPad?

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2016, 10:24:22 AM »
Enemy Unknown is still scary as shit.

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2016, 05:44:12 PM »
The new Xcom is probably the best modernisation of an old classic yet. Fantastic games in their own right that still recapture the heart of the original.

But the original still has a ton of merits. The interface can take a little while to get used to and the micromanagement gets really annoying but it still might be the best turn based strategy game ever made. The various remakes (Xenonauts) fan games (OpenXcom) and rip-offs (The UFO series) don't even come close. To me the new XCom 2 is the closest the original Ufo: Enemy Unknown has had to a true successor.

Enemy From The Deep and Apocalypse are fascinating in many ways paticularly Apocalypse and its open world ambitions. But are defintely experts only. Deep because it is hard as balls and Apocalypse because it takes a lot of love and care to get through the layers of broken half finished code to reach the goodness.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2016, 05:52:20 PM »
I love all the stuff Enemy Within brings, I did end up really missing the gene-modded soldiers in XCOM 2 even though it has it's own innovations.

I had a sniper who become ridiculously overpowered by the end, he could jump on roofs and take out entire waves of enemies  by himself.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2016, 06:35:08 PM »
But the original still has a ton of merits. The interface can take a little while to get used to and the micromanagement gets really annoying but it still might be the best turn based strategy game ever made. The various remakes (Xenonauts) fan games (OpenXcom) and rip-offs (The UFO series) don't even come close. To me the new XCom 2 is the closest the original Ufo: Enemy Unknown has had to a true successor.

The only thing that came close for me (before the reboot at least) was the Silent Storm series. No real overworld layer to speak of, but once you get your head around the fiddly interface it's got some of the best tactical combat in the genre. The huge amount of destructibility (machine-gunning the floor out from enemies on an upper level never gets old) and the fancy physics engine for the time means it still looks and plays really great to this day, especially once your crew starts levelling up and doing some proper damage.

It gets really divisive towards the end when it starts leaning heavily towards Panzerklein combat (essentially hulking armoured suits that take a lot of fun out of things), but there are patches to punch those up or get rid of them entirely if you prefer. Great little game.

Really need to get back into XCOM 2 again, that game is just ridiculously good.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2016, 07:14:38 PM »
I love all the stuff Enemy Within brings, I did end up really missing the gene-modded soldiers in XCOM 2 even though it has it's own innovations.

I had a sniper who become ridiculously overpowered by the end, he could jump on roofs and take out entire waves of enemies  by himself.

Snipers tend to be my favourite class in most games, especially fps ones, but in XCOM they are absolute gods. I need to go back to XCOM 2 but I'm at a really tough part, and I'm having a lot of fun on my first Enemy Within play through. [spoiler]Exalt have just overrun my base, which really took me by surprise. Hopefully I can smash them.[/spoiler]

It is a bit of a shame about the squad sight penalties in X2, but I guess they could be a bit OP, and it'll balance out with gun mods and stuff as I get further in. I usually go Double Tap for the last ability, but I have vague memories of having In The Zone snipers hovering in the air (I always take Damn Good Ground), and just - as you say - wiping out whole waves.

Oh man, such great games. I'm really working hard to plan my base and research out well this time, and want to try and stop any countries leaving.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2016, 07:32:25 PM »
I had a game last night after assaulting the alien base, to bring down global panic. So the sectors commanders were now a thing. Get notice of a small scout UFO, decide to send in a couple of low-ranking guys to get them some experience. Also sent my MEC and my second-best sniper.

Well, big mistake. Fucking Mutons and Floaters everywhere for starters, then about 4 sectors commanders in the UFO itself. I've managed to whittle it down to just those guys (a big XCOM tip for EU and EW is never really ever use dash, and don't trigger new waves by moving about until you've finished with the current lot.) So I figure the worst is over with - nope! My MEC gets mind-controlled! I whittle away at the sections while relying on full cover and smoke grenades, then at the last minute think of using my snipers Disabling Shot to stop my MEC fucking up my now-exposed soldiers.

Was having to squeeze in reloads, too! Tense as fuck. Then my sniper gets mind-controlled! Two sections left, I get my MEC back finally, gravely wounded, but still battling on, and him and the two noobs manages to finish up. Just an amazing gaming experience.

XCOM battles can often seem overwhelming and insurmountable, but as long as you remember (or check) your perks and bonuses, and cycle through everyone to see their options before committing to your turn, well, you're in with a chance. And it's thrilling when your strategising all pays off.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2016, 09:15:53 PM »
I've never played one of these. I'm getting Cannon Fodder but more strategic and with stats. Is this accurate at all?

Lt Plonker

  • Never forget.
    • Graymation
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2016, 10:12:30 PM »
They are sensational games!

I'd recommend not naming any of your squad after family members and giving them elaborate backstories. Watching my sister's lifeless body tumble to the ground as she took a blast to the face was surprisingly affecting and hearing myself think back "My sister's dead." didn't do much for my mood.

I am sad to report though that, as of this evening, Jeremy 'Comrade' Corbyn will NOT be returning to active duty due to him being dead.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #14 on: October 13, 2016, 10:39:36 PM »
That's what happens when you send a jam-making pacifist to war!

I've never played one of these. I'm getting Cannon Fodder but more strategic and with stats. Is this accurate at all?

Kind of, yeah, but turn-based with a limited amount of moves per turn, and base management and a tech tree to work through, which adds more choice and strategy. As your soldiers rank up, you have to choose between different abilities offered, deciding roughly between offence, defence or support.

They have a reputation for being tough, and you do really have to think out your approach. I find them accessible and addictive in a much more fun way than eg the Civ or Sim City games. You're given a lot of tools and rules, but never in an overwhelming way. As you progress you learn different ways of synergising your troops, so that a balanced squad of different classes can really bring the pain. For instance, heavies tend to have crappy aim, so I'll usually give them Holo-targeting and suppression. Then when I remember to use them against a big target at the start of a round, everyone else in the squad will benefit from +10 aim.

I know you said you're planning to get XCOM 2, but I'd really recommend picking up Enemy Unknown and/or Enemy Within for a few quid, too.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2016, 07:12:00 AM »
I'm not sure if they're on PS4 actually. I got one of them via PS+ on the PS3 I think but never really touched it. I've watched some YT but it's a bit confusing and obviously only shows the tactical bits rather than the stat based strategies.

Defo on my radar but gonna wait for a sale. Mostly interested because of reading years of excitement for these games on here.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2016, 02:13:43 PM »
…It's more different than I expected, sitting comfortably between EU and X2 in approach. Meld means you can find yourself getting pushed out of just sitting in overwatch killzones, for the most part. Just about to do my first Exalt mission, exciting. Been playing it loads and still don't have my genetics lab set up, but pretty happy with my support mech…

Yeah, I played my first (and only) EW game while waiting for XCOM 2 – I had EW for a while but never got round to playing it – and it struck me that Meld really encouraged more aggressive play, which is vital in the second game.

…Just really, really glad these games are available on console, as they're pretty niche, sadly, but they're such a wildly satisfying and tense chess game.

Very much so on console – which appears to be the main reason that they were concentrating on the PC for the sequel.

Yeah, that sounds awesome, especially if you're on PC as there are tons of mods available, such as Long War….

I remember the developers saying that ‘basically XCOM is a 20-hour tutorial for the Long War mod.’

They had said they weren’t planning mod-support for the console versions, but we’ll see.

Slight tangent, but one reason they said they wanted to push the modding aspect in XCOM 2 is, as well as being awesome, is that sales of PC games with active modding community tend to have more longer legs.

They gave away soon recently on the Xbox, someone told me that Xcom: enemy unknown is a miles better game.

So I bought it on his advice,Its exactly the same fucking game.

If someone didn’t get on with EU, I can’t see them being converted by EU. However, there are definite differences that affect how the game is played (as Barry said). It’s a bit like the two expansion packs for Civ 5, I think.

Is it any good on iPad?

Yes – I should say I’ve never played it on that, but all the feedback is great and people couldn’t believe how good the port was. Graphics have been downgraded a little and I think they cut out some of the maps, but otherwise content is the same – and I think online multiplayer was included.

The touchscreen interface is meant to be good (and IIRC, tweaked a bit with EW). I remember the Space Hulk iOS port was solid but the PC game had some annoying UI issues, which were lovingly recreated when a touchscreen version should be pure gravy.

I'm not sure if they're on PS4 actually. I got one of them via PS+ on the PS3 I think but never really touched it. I've watched some YT but it's a bit confusing and obviously only shows the tactical bits rather than the stat based strategies…

Although there are stats, strategies are primarily based on tactics and you don’t really have much control over the stats of your troops. You can improve them with better gear, but this will tend to complement their natural role.

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #17 on: October 14, 2016, 04:27:01 PM »
Speaking of Long War, the Dev team behind it have released a bunch of mods for Xcom 2. The aliens mod and the toolbox mod are both well worth trying. But for me at least the difficulty in Xcom 2 was perfect and the long war mods spoil that somewhat.
https://steamcommunity.com/id/longwarstudios/myworkshopfiles/

But I do think the importance of Long War has been over rated, reading r/xcom you'd think the Long War team made the entire game as opposed to just tweaking a couple dozen little variables. I guess its a sign of the times that as games become more complex mods become rarer so the mods that do make it through tend to be elevated beyond their merits.

ZoyzaSorris

  • if you can smell me it's too late
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2016, 07:19:56 PM »
Keep having to delete EW off my ipad because depite having finished it in impossible iron man, i keep hvaing a wistful thought that maybe i could while away a couple of hours on it again in a uqiet moment. Three days later, when ive been glued to my pad way more than is healthy, i have no choice but to delete again.

Have a real love/hate relationship with it, especially when you take on a benign looking ship landing only to be charged by dozens of mutons, or you get a thin man based bomb mission in the first month.

Mention of laser squad early put me in mind of an old game i enjoyed called lords of chaos, where you could summon up all manner of strange beasts and control them - both titles hvaing been created by Julian Gollop who i also didnt realise was behind the first xcom game. you learn something new etc...

Mobius

  • he who hingeth aboot getteth hee haw
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #19 on: October 18, 2016, 06:37:46 AM »
I just picked up X-Com 2 on the PS4 the other day and I don't know how I haven't destroyed my controller, console, telly, and self yet.

Every new game I start off solid, things are going well and then I'll hit a mission with 'moderate' difficulty instead of 'easy' (I am on the easiest setting, naturally) and I'll make a complete balls up of it. And from there I'm on the back-foot, having to field rookies in the next battle, struggling for supplies etc.

Then this fucking roaming UFO crashes my ship, Evasive maneuvers do sod all and they wipe out every single person I have until I get game over.

I've read guides and tips and whatnot, but I think I'm just shit at this and not sure how I'll ever be good without having to reload literally every turn, which is a bit annoying as the loading screen is quite long.

I felt the exact same way about Dark Souls/Bloodborne and ended up loving and completing them all so I'm sure this'll pass but FUCKING HELL this game knows how to get your goat.

I wish there was a 'Very Easy' mode or a way to nicely ask the Aliens to just chill for a month so I can get shit sorted out.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #20 on: October 18, 2016, 12:41:31 PM »
You might just want to start another play through, and focus on different tech and stuff this time around. I did that, as I had no idea what certain stuff did first time around, and it does really help. I rushed squad size updates this time, it's a real help having another 1 or 2 people with me.

Other than that, are you flanking and aware of when you've been flanked? If your cover (always use cover) has been compromised, you'll have a yellow shield or half-shield beside your name. This means you're prone to critical hits and to getting your shit pushed in generally.

I got splashed by a UFO myself the other night, fuck me it's a war!  Just trying to get your last couple of assault units back on-board is crazy.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #21 on: October 18, 2016, 12:59:39 PM »
Yeah, the increased squad makes a big difference.

With tech research, I tend to prioritise weapons over armour – it tends to be more important being able to inflict damage, rather than take it. It’s easy to get to a point when your weapons are having little effect.

Mobius

  • he who hingeth aboot getteth hee haw
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #22 on: October 19, 2016, 05:09:34 AM »
Other than that, are you flanking and aware of when you've been flanked? If your cover (always use cover) has been compromised, you'll have a yellow shield or half-shield beside your name. This means you're prone to critical hits and to getting your shit pushed in generally.

Oh bugger, I thought a shield icon meant I was shielded, not the other way round. Well that'd explain some of my issues then! I assumed Red Shield was bad news, but didn't realise Yellow was shite too.

I've been generally trying to achieve the objectives (build that Skulljack thing) because I was trying to stop the alien project but I wonder if by doing that I'm accelerating the enemy, and ramping up the difficulty by 'advancing' the plot so to speak.

Bigger squad definitely sounds like it'd be a help to me, that's that Advanced Warfare Centre thing isn't it?

I seem to struggle between having enough resources to build stuff early on, whilst also maintain a squad capable of covering for injured soldiers.

Also how important is building these resistance comms/resistance radio things? I don't really understand their purpose.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #23 on: October 19, 2016, 11:53:18 AM »
Yellow shields are very bad news, the enemy will get huge bonuses. So move, but be careful if you know some of them are on overwatch - this can be removed through damage, now. You want to be in a blue shield position, full shield gives you more cover than half shield. On Xbox, when you're targeting, you can press the right thumb stick in I think... That shows all the bonuses and penalties (eg for enemy in cover, for elevation position etc), and is actually really useful, try that.

Now make sure you flank THEM :-) also, when you're moving, a little crosshair will appear beside the enemy if you can hit them from the position you're highlighting. This is sweet af.

Yes, rushing objectives does tend to make the game tougher, in previous ones anyway, and I think also in XCOM 2 from my still limited experience. You can't go too slow, or you'll game over, but you do have plenty of time, and generally you will buy back more time when you complete big objectives, eg go into an alien base, or a black site as it is in X2. So, get ready for that, and never field rookies for those missions.

Advanced Warfare Center, NO MATE! It's Guerilla Tactics School that gives you squad size upgrades, AWC is other handy stuff like decreasing recovery time and giving soldiers abilities outside of their tree.

Resource management can be a bitch, but if you're not building comms relays, that's partly why :-) they give you supplies back each month, more if you upgrade them, and more still if you get an "All In" bonus, ie activate all three comms on one continent.

So they so require an initial outlay, but will then provide you with a regular income each month. You also need to have them up in countries where black sites are, so you can visit them.

I'd start again and plan your base out with this knowledge, and now you now to move your soldiers if they have a yellow shield, so you'll have a much better chance of getting them upgraded, and should also be able to flank the enemy. Get the AWC built, research magnetic weapons, strap some upgrades on them, oh and I've found it great to build a workshop early on. I build it one level down in my base, as then you can send gremlins to staff any adjacent square (not diagaonally though.) this is akin to having more scientists early on.

Ok hope this all makes sense and helps. Let us know how you get on, and if you are still struggling.

Crabwalk

  • Member
  • **
  • I behaved like a skinhead.
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #24 on: October 19, 2016, 12:13:26 PM »
Is it any good on iPad?

I used to play Enemy Unknown on an iPad (I don't own any proper consoles anymore) and the UK and graphics were good. It took a hefty chunk out of my 16GB storage capacity, mind.

Gameplay-wise it ended up feeling like a job so I canned it.

Mobius

  • he who hingeth aboot getteth hee haw
Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #25 on: October 22, 2016, 02:40:10 PM »
I just wanted to say thanks for the tips all, I'm feeling more confident this time round and things are looking good. I'm about to go into my first "moderate" difficulty style this time with 5 people and I think upgraded weapons, well I researched a load of weapon sounding stuff anyway.

If I don't post in this thread again, this battle hasn't gone well.

Re: XCOM Games
« Reply #26 on: October 24, 2016, 09:40:27 AM »
This thread has made me start another attempt at finishing Enemy Unknown and it's always as good as I remember (this might be my 4th try?).

Has anyone played this conversion of the original games, X-Piratez (yeah I know...)  Looks very faithful, gameplay-wise and quite good - it's set after the aliens have arrived, conquered, and then left, so you're struggling to keep your faction afloat.

Free apparently - and works if you have Enemy Unknown/Terror From the Deep on your system.  Might give it a go when I finished EU (I'll do it this time).