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Mixed or average reviews - based on 45 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.5

Mixed or average reviews- based on 562 Ratings

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  • Summary: It's 1962. John F. Kennedy is the U.S. President and the Cold War has the nation gripped with fear – but a far more viscous and insidious enemy than communism is threatening America. Known only to a scant few, a covet government unit called The Bureau begins investigating and concealing a series of mysterious attacks by an alien enemy. As special agent William Carter, you make the decisions, pull the trigger and lead your squad in a third-person tactical shooter set within a high-stakes, covert war to defend the human race. The Bureau’s mission is clear – survive, adapt and overcome the enemy threat (Heartbreak Ridge-style) to protect the citizens from the truth. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 45
  2. Negative: 2 out of 45
  1. Aug 27, 2013
    82
    The Bureau: XCOM Declassified is an interesting hybrid between a traditional third-person shooter and a strategic game, with elements of role-playing game; but the impression is a game crippled by a troubled production. If you are in search of a different action videogame, maybe The Bureau is the game are you searching for.
  2. Aug 19, 2013
    80
    Paradoxically, The Bureau: XCOM Declassified feels immediate and inclusive as a strategy game, relying more closely on your rapid-fire commands than the bursts of your rifle. The odd hybrid is far from being fully evolved, but it's well suited to further study.
  3. Aug 22, 2013
    75
    Developer 2K Marin has put everything into creating the best tactical fights possible. Because of this the third person alien shooter is at its best when taking on enemies in combat. Unfortunately everything else is less refined, but despite this The Bureau is still a great addition to the series.
  4. Aug 19, 2013
    70
    2K Marin has done their best with the almost impossible task to create a narrative rich, tactic driven TPS that justifies the name of "XCOM". The result is a decent and professional effort from a team that could have done better without being tied to that name.
  5. Aug 28, 2013
    62
    The Bureau: XCOM Declassified feels confused and half-finished, a hollow but beautiful slog through XCOM’s early years.
  6. Sep 1, 2013
    60
    Like the redacted CIA documents featured so heavily in the game’s marketing, The Bureau comes across as disjointed, baffling and inconsistent. But moments of clarity may well keep you interested in what lies beneath that faltering surface.
  7. Aug 19, 2013
    45
    The Bureau: XCOM Declassified desperately wants to be liked, but by failing to satisfy in any direction, all it succeeds in being is a disappointment. It wants to be a strategy game without being a strategy game, it wants to be a shooter without being a shooter, and it wants to be XCOM without being XCOM. As such, it is nothing. It's an inconsequential waste of time that does nothing for anybody, and saying that makes me feel guilty because its cloying pleas to not be hated are worthy of pity.

See all 45 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 83 out of 159
  2. Negative: 38 out of 159
  1. 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: 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
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  2. Jan 29, 2014
    10
    Critics are wrong. It has the most expensive polygons i've ever seen. It is wonderfully voiced. It's gorgeously tactical yet perfectly first ''persony''. Theres even a perk/upgrade system not unlike Mass Effects.

    If i made this game i'd have expected better reviews.

    I suspect the people reviewing this game were chosen by the editors for their expertise in reviewing tactical games. This game is half tactical ergo the half-hearted reviews.

    This game failed to disappoint me and im saddened it took me so long to play it because of my respect for the average metacritic review score. Lesson learned
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  3. 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 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.
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  4. Aug 26, 2013
    7
    The Bureau: XCOM Declassified is one of those games that oozes with potential but fails to quite get the most out of it. It's far from great but still has managed to hook me enough to keep me coming back to it

    The setting will feel instantly familiar to XCOM veterans with opponents are terrain features that appaer in earlier XCOM titles as well. As far as 3rd person shooters go it's fairly ok. The game feels somewhat sluggish but offers enough tactical options to make combat interesting. It never evolves past interesting though since the AI leaves much to be desired making combat feel slowpaced and kinda dumbed down. Opponents are hardhitting and tough making combat challenging enough, although perhaps not in the way I would've hoped.

    The 1950's backdrop is cool, not something you see a whole lot, but as with the gameplay (and pretty much everything else in The Bureau) the full potential hasn't been unlocked. The towns and vehicles are 50's but never does the game feel convincingly set in the USA of the 50's. Walking around on linear maps from combat area to combat area there's the occasional vista which manages to impress but it's too little really.

    I could go on and on but the gist is clear. This game could've been great, instead it's just ok. Barely.
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  5. May 25, 2014
    6
    The Bureau is a prime example of how complaining fanboys can ruin a game. The original FPS version of this game looked like it would be filled with story and immersion while taking a lighter take on the strategy. Everyone whined about it and they changed it to be a tactical TPS instead. The story itself had all the makings of being good, but the terrible animations and voice acting killed any opportunity for the player to get involved with it. Being a TPS, it was very difficult to get immersed in the world because i never really felt like I was there. The tactics themselves are crap. Even on the hardest difficulty, there is absolutely no reason for you to try to flank enemies because of how awful the AI is. If you try to move you squad around, they'll just jump out of cover and immediately get downed. So you're stuck with straight firefights and skill spam. There is little depth in your character. The high point of Enemy Unknown was that you could completely customize every aspect of your character. In The Bureau, you can change their cosmetic appearance, but the weapons and backpacks are all unlocked at set times throughout the story and the later you acquire them, the better the gun is. There is nothing interesting about it. The skill trees are boring, you'll either have 1 or 2 options each time you level. The game is just very shallow. You can see that there are good ideas, But due to public outcry against a game they've never played, the developers had to constantly change their vision of the game until it has become the unfinished, sloppy mess that it is today. It's still an enjoyable game at times. If you're a fan of tactical shooters, it's well worth a single playthrough. Just don't expect to be wowed. Expand
  6. Aug 24, 2013
    5
    It's a shame this game was published by 2K Games. I have to take points off for this simply because they have decided to price gouge the Australian market yet again, pricing the game way above the worth of the title.

    The game itself feels uninspired with so many other squad based 3rd person shooters on the market already, I was hoping that they would create something a little more unique than they did with this one. It just doesn't come across as a true X-COM title.. sure, it has that theme.. but so do other titles that have no affiliation with the X-COM series.

    I'm not a fanboi of the series.. I just would have preferred it to be more in-line with what X-COM has been about for generations. This would have been a great mod of the latest X-COM game.. or some indie spin-off.. but I can't endorse something like that this that comes off as feeling like a money grab and attention seeking from those who prefer 3rd person shooters rather than the core X-COM franchise.
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  7. Aug 8, 2014
    0
    I have never seen such an elegant cross between action and strategy, fun and playability, be so quickly ruined by taking everything you ever remotely thought you loved about XCOM and throwing it down the drain. Everything you could possibly love about this game is instantly ruined by the awful story, the dialogue that's so crappy it's not even fun to make fun of, or the weird, sexist twist the developers made by deciding that this should be the only XCOM game that only lets male soldiers on your squad.

    If you're a fan of having your favorite things destroyed for no good reason (or if you just love awful writing), grab this game.
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See all 159 User Reviews