The Bureau: XCOM Declassified PC

User Score
6.5

Mixed or average reviews- based on 626 Ratings

User score distribution:
Buy On

Review this game

  1. Your Score
    0 out of 10
    Rate this:
    • 10
    • 9
    • 8
    • 7
    • 6
    • 5
    • 4
    • 3
    • 2
    • 1
    • 0
    • 0
  1. Submit
  2. Check Spelling
  1. Aug 20, 2013
    8
    I'm seeing a lot of moaning that this isn't XCOM, and maybe the dev's should have just dropped the name because it seems more like fanboy rage, then actual constructive criticism of essential a pretty good 3rd person shooter.

    The development has been marred with problems, mainly I believe to fanboy outrage to initial screens of the game. I was actually looking forward to a First
    I'm seeing a lot of moaning that this isn't XCOM, and maybe the dev's should have just dropped the name because it seems more like fanboy rage, then actual constructive criticism of essential a pretty good 3rd person shooter.

    The development has been marred with problems, mainly I believe to fanboy outrage to initial screens of the game. I was actually looking forward to a First person, investigation game. Then the game went dark, but eventually came back to life, in what seemed to be a mash up between Mass Effect and some XCOM elements.

    I love the XCOM series, do I care that this game has XCOM in the title? No. I take games on face value, and not what I expect the game should be. In fact, I don't go into any games with expectations why would you? Why not be surprised, which I am about this game.

    It didn't take long before I started getting the knack for the controls and ordering my men around it all seemed to work well, and I was killing aliens left, right and centre. The AI, seems intuitive enough to get the job done on both sides.

    I love the setting, and the story isn't as convoluted as some have suggested. The game isn't perfect by any means. There have been some hiccups with stuttering, and slow downs but the steam community is on the ball. Hopefully updated video drivers and possible game tweaking will solve most of these issues which we should all be reminded happens even to the best of games.

    I do feel the game is a little barron in respects to environments and ambient objects within the world. It kinda feels like a lost opportunity, but I also wonder whether it was a design decision to have more of a clean sterile look to most environments?

    Overall this is a solid title, not great, but definitely not worth the scores that it's getting. This game is easily a low mid 8. I paid $36.00 for this game through a site, with some discounts, if you can't get 36 dollars worth of value from this game, then you are doing something VERY wrong.
    Expand
  2. Aug 20, 2013
    10
    I REAALLYY thought this would just be another shooter but they implemented X-COM's style of strategy so well it actually feels like 3rd person RTS xcom, I dont care about the unsatisfied destructoid review I don't see why in the world he would like how it isnt a shooter or a strategy or an xcom game BECAUSE ITS ALL OF THOSE COMBINED, and that's much more awesome than it sounds

    GamePlay:
    I REAALLYY thought this would just be another shooter but they implemented X-COM's style of strategy so well it actually feels like 3rd person RTS xcom, I dont care about the unsatisfied destructoid review I don't see why in the world he would like how it isnt a shooter or a strategy or an xcom game BECAUSE ITS ALL OF THOSE COMBINED, and that's much more awesome than it sounds

    GamePlay: 9/10
    Story: 8/10
    visuals: 7/10
    Replayabilty: 10/10

    P.S: anyone going into this expecting a carbon copy of XCOM enemy unknown or UFO defense's gameplay is an idiot
    Expand
  3. Oct 9, 2013
    8
    The Major issue most people have had with Xcom Declassified is that, in short, it was not Xcom. The developers attempted to create a different game set in a universe similar, but not the same as, the universe XCOM and its predecessor, UFO resided in. They then took this altered reality and said "we're going to try something different" and made The Bureau into a 3PS. In short, if you'reThe Major issue most people have had with Xcom Declassified is that, in short, it was not Xcom. The developers attempted to create a different game set in a universe similar, but not the same as, the universe XCOM and its predecessor, UFO resided in. They then took this altered reality and said "we're going to try something different" and made The Bureau into a 3PS. In short, if you're looking for an expansion to XCOM Enemy Unknown, you're barking up the wrong tree.

    So, how does this 3PS differ from other 3PS?

    Well first of all, you're not alone in your fight. While you are a badass, if you run in guns blazing alone, you will get yourself killed. For this reason, the game gives you a pair of sidekicks that accompany you on missions (the characters themselves are unimportant) these two can do any range of jobs from pissing off giant alien quadrupeds so you can shoot them in their rear, to deploying laser cannons to cover your advance or do massive amounts of damage in a single shot.

    Secondly, the game penalises you heavily if you aren't in cover. IT utilises a similar cover system to XCOM EU with a half and full cover, with damage being reduced based on where you stand. Also like XCOM EU, if an enemy is in a position where your cover is useless against him, he flanks you, that is, he will do a lot more damage as you aren't expecting the hit. These combined features make The Bureau one of the most cover-intensive modern games, and makes a good position the difference between life and death.

    A good position is not everything, however, as your opponent's AI, a stunningly complex and intelligent system on heavier difficulties, is always on the move, always changing position and trying to get into places from which the most damage can be done. For this reason, constant movement, literal island hopping is needed to ensure the safety of your team. There is never a single map where you can't gain an advantage as the fight progresses, and there is not a map where you can be safe in any one place for long.

    To top off a gripping, battlefield motivated gameplay, the game contains a novel plotline that you can truly get into, and offers many interesting plot twists. This along with adequate voice acting and enjoyable graphics makes for an inspired, if not what you expected game.

    Ratings:
    Gameplay: 10/10
    UI: 7/10
    AI: 9/10
    Story: 8/10
    Voice acting and graphics: 6/10
    Expand
  4. Oct 10, 2013
    8
    This game is underrated.

    The characters are actually not bad, the story is good, the art desing and graphics are nice and the combat system is decent.
    The game is not a masterpiece and certainly its kind of a mass effect wannabe with the overall control and combat of the game... but that doesn't make it a bad game, it just lacks a bit of identity when it comes to that.
  5. Sep 7, 2013
    8
    I admit, I was expecting a first person version of XCOM: Enemy Unknown, one of the best games I've ever played. This game was not that. At first, I almost stopped playing because this game felt way more first person shooter than tactical. It could be because the battle never slows down enough for you to think out your decisions, or because the beginning battles are in such smallI admit, I was expecting a first person version of XCOM: Enemy Unknown, one of the best games I've ever played. This game was not that. At first, I almost stopped playing because this game felt way more first person shooter than tactical. It could be because the battle never slows down enough for you to think out your decisions, or because the beginning battles are in such small rooms/areas, or because the battles barely lasted long enough to actually flank anybody, or because if you actually did try to flank somebody, you'd die on your way there. Additionally, none of the powers you start with are very tactical at all. At any rate, it didn't feel like I had much control over the battlefield. However, the story, characters, graphics, and voice acting were good enough to keep me trudging through. Eventually, though, the powers started getting better, the battles started getting larger scale, and it started to feel like what I ordered my team to do mattered a *little* more. Toward the end, you can still win a battle without leaving your starting spot, but at least it feels a little more like Mass Effect 1, now. And I'm enjoying myself.

    I think the reason this game is getting such bad reviews is because of 1) the expectation of it to be similar to XCOM: Enemy Unknown and 2) for whatever reason, the beginning is pretty weak. But it does get better and the graphics, story, acting, etc. are great. I'd classify it as a slightly weaker copy of Mass Effect 1.

    I also think the one thing they could have done to improve this game *tremendously* would be to actually pause the battle when you bring up your command screen, rather than just slowing it down. Just slowing it down makes things rushed and chaotic. You care less about making the "right" decisions and tend to just spray and pray, instead. You also have absolutely no time to "scan" the battlefield as you were meant to (it's a power) because if you actually spent time doing that, it would remove the small window of time you have to flank an enemy before they die.
    Expand
  6. Sep 12, 2013
    8
    It is really good tpp game. For every Xcom fans. Gameplay is enjoyable. Plot quite surprising at the end. Mix of 60 's and traditional Xcom is eatable. If You had good time with ME (especially 2 and 3) You will like this game also. It is not so long though, but worth of playing.
  7. Sep 27, 2013
    8
    Being new to the XCOM series (Very unsure whether UFO series count in any way), I'm not confined within the box to what a "XCOM game" should be like. Yes, this game is buggy, the graphics are not top notch, the combat control is not that linear and yes there are gaps in the storyline/dialog/logic.
    Despite all these flaws, the atmosphere it creates and the ambition to combine the turn base
    Being new to the XCOM series (Very unsure whether UFO series count in any way), I'm not confined within the box to what a "XCOM game" should be like. Yes, this game is buggy, the graphics are not top notch, the combat control is not that linear and yes there are gaps in the storyline/dialog/logic.
    Despite all these flaws, the atmosphere it creates and the ambition to combine the turn base tactical roots with FPS is VERY new and enjoyable.
    Just didn't think this game should be rated as low as it is now despite needing some refinements with some patches. For me, at least 7.5 without patches, and maybe 8.5 if all technical problems are smoothed out.
    Expand
  8. Oct 26, 2013
    9
    An enjoyable mix of 3rd person shooter and alternate history. Just like Resistance Fall of Man wrapped in the mystery of the world of X-Com.

    Combat takes a little bit to get used to if you've played other x-com games or other similar 3rd person squad games like KOTOR as there is no actual pause, time is just slowed down rather than stopped so you have to be careful where your characters
    An enjoyable mix of 3rd person shooter and alternate history. Just like Resistance Fall of Man wrapped in the mystery of the world of X-Com.

    Combat takes a little bit to get used to if you've played other x-com games or other similar 3rd person squad games like KOTOR as there is no actual pause, time is just slowed down rather than stopped so you have to be careful where your characters before issuing commands during combat as you coiuld be killed by shots or grenades
    Expand
  9. Jun 18, 2014
    10
    I have actually created a Metacritic account, simply to point out that this game has been criminally underrated! i'm not saying its going to win GOTY, but its a superbly build game, with excellent voice acting, creative gameplay elements, and a cool storyline to boot!

    Its the thinking mans FPS :-) do yourself a favour and give it a try. i promise, you don't be disappointed!
  10. Aug 23, 2013
    8
    The story is interesting and entertaining and works perfectly as a sequel to the X-Com games. The only aspect that you may complain about is the gameplay, that has a few bugs that can easily be fixed with a patch. You should at least check it out.
  11. Aug 22, 2013
    8
    This game is very good, tactics, rpg, atmosphere etc. Only thing that misses is base management.
    The biggest problem of this game is its name, many people (including critics, who should be neutral) simply can't deal with the xcom game from soldier's (agent's) sight and they automatically give a bad score without any thought or doubt.
    So, if you want to know the real "score" of this game,
    This game is very good, tactics, rpg, atmosphere etc. Only thing that misses is base management.
    The biggest problem of this game is its name, many people (including critics, who should be neutral) simply can't deal with the xcom game from soldier's (agent's) sight and they automatically give a bad score without any thought or doubt.
    So, if you want to know the real "score" of this game, you have to add some points (10-15%) to annulate the haters.
    Expand
  12. Aug 22, 2013
    10
    This. Is. Excellent! I beg of you not to listen to the other reviewers (most of them seem to complain that it isn't like the other XCOM games?!) and try this game for yourself. I was playing this on my low(-ish) spec laptop (only an i3 processor and Intel HD 3000 Graphics card) before and it runs super smoothly. Even the low settings on this game looks incredible. The characters, gameplayThis. Is. Excellent! I beg of you not to listen to the other reviewers (most of them seem to complain that it isn't like the other XCOM games?!) and try this game for yourself. I was playing this on my low(-ish) spec laptop (only an i3 processor and Intel HD 3000 Graphics card) before and it runs super smoothly. Even the low settings on this game looks incredible. The characters, gameplay and storyline seems pretty good so far. Controls are easy to use and quite intuitive... The people criticising this game for not being like the others should have known that, as it was made extremely clear that it's a 3rd person shooter. Buy it, try it, and I'm sure you'll like it! Expand
  13. Aug 28, 2013
    10
    Its like a mass effect+xcom with a good story. I dont understand why review sites give 5-6 score to this game,
    Its a tactical shooter game with a lot of strategy, you must lead your teammates to battle, give orders to use their skills or make them move another location.
  14. Aug 27, 2013
    10
    If the developers had not called XCOM then critics had been benevolent. Maybe they expected a common shooter like BF or COD, but They were surprised because it was a tactical action game. The AI is high quality, because the enemies react as they should, although sometimes surprising reactions from teammates.

    I totally recommend it.
  15. Aug 27, 2013
    10
    Great game! XCOM meets Mass Effect, with an above average story. It isn´t XCOM: Enemy Unknown, but it´s also very good on its own. It´s fun, intelligent, albeit not so long, and not really hard.
  16. Aug 29, 2013
    10
    I feel the critics have been overly harsh with this game. I just finished it, having put approximately 20 hours into the game. Granted that was doing every side mission, and taking my time to listen to conversations. Its definitely not Enemy Unknown, but I enjoyed it non the less.

    The story was compelling, if a bit rushed in parts, and I wish they had incorporated some more of the
    I feel the critics have been overly harsh with this game. I just finished it, having put approximately 20 hours into the game. Granted that was doing every side mission, and taking my time to listen to conversations. Its definitely not Enemy Unknown, but I enjoyed it non the less.

    The story was compelling, if a bit rushed in parts, and I wish they had incorporated some more of the research and building aspects of Unknown but in the end I was completely happy with my purchase. The end of the game feels very rushed, and I would have liked a bit more diversity among my squad as I tended to use the same two for every mission.

    Definitely worth a buy though, as long as your expectations are right
    Expand
  17. Dec 28, 2013
    10
    Fantastic game. Just finished it.
    This is *NOT* a strategy game, but a spin-off loosely based on the classic X-Com series.
    Most close definition would be a squad-based shooter.

    This game was tremendous fun to play. The graphics are great. The gameplay was great. I loved the atmosphere, as well as the story.
    This game is highly underrated. Don't miss this one!
  18. Aug 27, 2013
    9
    Pretty much everything I wanted from the canceled XCom Alliance game that we never got. Yes, it apes Mass Effect, in more than a few ways. It has the third person cover-based shooting and pause-and-command system of Mass Effect, along with the mechanic of storyline choice steering your experience.

    While it lacks the overwhelming scope of the Mass Effect games, it does offer a deeper
    Pretty much everything I wanted from the canceled XCom Alliance game that we never got. Yes, it apes Mass Effect, in more than a few ways. It has the third person cover-based shooting and pause-and-command system of Mass Effect, along with the mechanic of storyline choice steering your experience.

    While it lacks the overwhelming scope of the Mass Effect games, it does offer a deeper tactical system than found in Bioware's games.

    The story is fun, even if you need to stretch your 'suspension of disbelief' a bit. Honestly, considering that you had to do the same for the previous X-com games, it's not a surprise. In the second half of the game, the stakes get raised and the plot twists in some interesting and unexpected ways.

    The voice acting is pretty solid and the overall flavor of setting it in that weird time period of the space race, yet before the hippie cultural revolution was a jolting and interesting choice.

    It is 3rd best X-com game, past the first and the recent tactical remake.

    The game is not without it's flaws, of course. The lip syncing and actor motion capture lacks polish. Also, the graphics are stylized and simplistic, yet run horribly on the highest graphic settings. It's also rather brief, with very little in the way of fleshing out and side missions.

    Also, it lacks the research, production, interception and base management of the previous games, so if that is what defines an Xcom game to you, you may be disappointed.

    This game with has convinced me that this will be cult classic game, like Vampire: Bloodlines or Alpha Protocol (though not as broken as either of those) and that not everyone is meant to 'get it'.
    Expand
  19. Aug 24, 2013
    9
    This game is amazing. I have been having a blast playing it. Think of a mix of Xcom and Mass Effect. These 2 awesome games are brought to you in a single package. This was totally worth every penny I spent.
  20. Aug 22, 2013
    8
    I feel the critics have been overly harsh with this game. I just finished it, having put approximately 30 hours into the game. Granted that was doing every side mission, and taking my time to listen to conversations. Its definitely not Enemy Unknown, but I enjoyed it non the less.

    The story was compelling, if a bit rushed in parts, and I wish they had incorporated some more of the
    I feel the critics have been overly harsh with this game. I just finished it, having put approximately 30 hours into the game. Granted that was doing every side mission, and taking my time to listen to conversations. Its definitely not Enemy Unknown, but I enjoyed it non the less.

    The story was compelling, if a bit rushed in parts, and I wish they had incorporated some more of the research and building aspects of Unknown but in the end I was completely happy with my purchase. The end of the game feels very rushed, and I would have liked a bit more diversity among my squad as I tended to use the same two for every mission.

    Definitely worth a buy though, as long as your expectations are right.
    Expand
  21. Aug 22, 2013
    8
    Overall I think its a pretty decent game, It's pretty fun if you like tactical shooters. The gameplay style and mechanics are very similar to Mass Effect I think the developers actually even came out and said they were shooting for Mass Effect 'ish gameplay mechanics. It has a very authentic 50's-early 60's theme and feel. Sure it's not like any of the other X-COM or XCOM games but thenOverall I think its a pretty decent game, It's pretty fun if you like tactical shooters. The gameplay style and mechanics are very similar to Mass Effect I think the developers actually even came out and said they were shooting for Mass Effect 'ish gameplay mechanics. It has a very authentic 50's-early 60's theme and feel. Sure it's not like any of the other X-COM or XCOM games but then again almost all the games in the series are very different from each other anyways. To some it isn't "X-COM enough" but that doesn't make it a bad game, The Bureau is good in its own way, and has even some typical features of a XCOM game like the customization of your squad member's names, load outs and uniform color. So... In a nut shell.

    PROS:
    *Awesome 50's atmosphere that feels very original.

    *Tactical combat is fun and creative.

    *Very logical abilities of squad member classes.

    CONS:
    * Limited amount of customization options.

    * The facial expressions of some of the NPC's are kind of bad, considering the standard of games
    in this day and age.

    *Feels kinda short for a story based tactical shooter, games like this are good with longevity.

    *Some wasted opportunities that could of pushed this game higher would of been something similar to XCOM:EU's collecting resources on the battlefield and researching tech for better weapons and armor.

    In summary, The Bureau isn't a bad entry in the XCOM, it can be pretty fun to utilize your squad's abilities in combat, I just feel it needed more features and longer and better character progression for the player and the squad members.
    Expand
  22. Aug 23, 2013
    8
    Fun game with a good story and challenging FPS tactical combat. It could use some polish and a better introduction first mission, but the squad customization and base exploration story telling is worth the play through.
  23. Aug 23, 2013
    8
    Although not perfect I don't understand why the game is getting bad reviews. A few negatives are that only one key can be bind to each action and some agent abilities can be fiddly moving with the camera. Over all though this game is enjoyable and much better than some reviewers would have you believe.

    I especially like the XCOM 60's theme and the GFX is good too. I probably would not
    Although not perfect I don't understand why the game is getting bad reviews. A few negatives are that only one key can be bind to each action and some agent abilities can be fiddly moving with the camera. Over all though this game is enjoyable and much better than some reviewers would have you believe.

    I especially like the XCOM 60's theme and the GFX is good too. I probably would not pay £30 for it but considering I got it for £20 with all the pre-order bonuses I'm quite happy and will have fun playing it through once. I don't see this game having the replay ability of XCOM Enemy Unknown, but these are 2 fundamentally different games, so would be unfair to compare them. They share the same theme and that's where it ends.

    Don't expect Battlefield 3 or Mass Effect 3 and look at this game as something unique.
    Expand
  24. Aug 24, 2013
    9
    Let me get this out of the way: The Bureau is not XCOM:EU or any other previous XCOM game; if you expected it to be then just leave. The Bureau is an interesting concept with some interesting mechanics, it's difficult but not overly. It feels a little clunky at times and has a HUGE learning curve: you're looking at about 2-3 hours before you even get close to the actual game. But none theLet me get this out of the way: The Bureau is not XCOM:EU or any other previous XCOM game; if you expected it to be then just leave. The Bureau is an interesting concept with some interesting mechanics, it's difficult but not overly. It feels a little clunky at times and has a HUGE learning curve: you're looking at about 2-3 hours before you even get close to the actual game. But none the less it is worth the money. Expand
  25. Aug 24, 2013
    9
    As many others I don't get all the negative reviews.
    I'm an old fan of XCOM, I had my objections to latest XCOM Enemy Unknown, but Bureau is what I think it was supposed to be.
    Graphics look good, missions play nice, story is ok and basically it's what I expected, a TPP game in XCOM universe, that is something more than a shooter. So yeah, thanks 2K Marin, I hope you'll keep working on
    As many others I don't get all the negative reviews.
    I'm an old fan of XCOM, I had my objections to latest XCOM Enemy Unknown, but Bureau is what I think it was supposed to be.
    Graphics look good, missions play nice, story is ok and basically it's what I expected, a TPP game in XCOM universe, that is something more than a shooter.
    So yeah, thanks 2K Marin, I hope you'll keep working on this branch of XCOM games.
    Expand
  26. Aug 20, 2013
    10
    First off, if you're looking for the sequel to Enemy Unknown, you're looking in the wrong place. This is a 3rd person squad based tactical shooter and it's a lot of fun. The story is excellent and I feel really immersed. The character models are amazing and it truly feels like the 1960's.

    Fans of the series should definitely give it a shot.
  27. Aug 21, 2013
    10
    10/10 it's not a pure xcom okay deal with it but it's a good game not a bad game 10/10 because so many want this game so bad so i just want to equilibrate the score sorry for my english
  28. Jun 30, 2014
    10
    This game is under rated. I have played for about 5 hours now and the combat is a blast, story seems interesting, good graphics, and good character development. IMO the combat is better than turn based. You can directly instruct your men as to what weapon to use and what target to hit, yet they will act on their own, somewhat effectively, in between commands. As your commands are beingThis game is under rated. I have played for about 5 hours now and the combat is a blast, story seems interesting, good graphics, and good character development. IMO the combat is better than turn based. You can directly instruct your men as to what weapon to use and what target to hit, yet they will act on their own, somewhat effectively, in between commands. As your commands are being followed your player acts as a third person shooter with access to both conventional, alien weapons and some cool alien powers - a total alien annihilator, As for the to cool for anything 'cept XCOM crowd, get over yourself - TBXCOMD is as good a game, and better in aspects, vs. XCOM, If you like TPS and Turn Based (less focused Turn based) with an old time si-fi twist, you'll like the game-it's a lot of fun. Expand
  29. Aug 26, 2013
    8
    I don't understand the bad reviews this game has got, it's excellent. There might be few techncial glitches but the story and gameplay is pure solid gold! If you're into games like Mass Effect this one is just for you, It's tactical 3rd person shooter with a lot of story elements. Some people might play it without doing additional investigation quests and without reading notes and audioI don't understand the bad reviews this game has got, it's excellent. There might be few techncial glitches but the story and gameplay is pure solid gold! If you're into games like Mass Effect this one is just for you, It's tactical 3rd person shooter with a lot of story elements. Some people might play it without doing additional investigation quests and without reading notes and audio logs, then I understand why they don't like this. This is for patient players who like to read a good story while playing. Recommended! Expand
  30. Sep 1, 2013
    8
    I really did enjoy my time playing this game, but it did have its flaws which made this game not as good as it could have been. I'm alright on how the story went out since it was interesting and there are people that are complaining about it being confusing like are you suppose to understand everything early in the game? I don't think so. I don't mind that this is a 3rd person shooterI really did enjoy my time playing this game, but it did have its flaws which made this game not as good as it could have been. I'm alright on how the story went out since it was interesting and there are people that are complaining about it being confusing like are you suppose to understand everything early in the game? I don't think so. I don't mind that this is a 3rd person shooter since it had something unique to it which was the commands.

    The score I'm giving it is a 7.5 because there isn't really a perm death to squad-mates with these checkpoints. Also the customization is weak (My opinion). The squad would still get shot down when in cover mostly.
    Expand
Metascore
66

Mixed or average reviews - based on 45 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 45
  2. Negative: 2 out of 45
  1. Nov 6, 2013
    60
    For all that The Bureau get’s wrong, it is at least a passable tactical shooter with a novel, well-realised setting. If you love the golden age of science-fiction, there’s something here for you. Just don’t expect it to ever get truly interesting, because XCOM Declassified never captures what XCOM is all about.
  2. Pelit (Finland)
    Oct 5, 2013
    73
    The Bureau: XCOM Declassified does not deliver. It is not bad, but rather depressingly average. [Sept 2013]
  3. PC PowerPlay
    Sep 25, 2013
    70
    A competent tactical shooter that doesn't push any boundaries and is only peripherally related to XCOM. [Oct 2013, p.96]