XCOM: Enemy Unknown Image
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89

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics What's this?

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8.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 291 Ratings

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  • Summary: Lead your troops in fierce battles to defeat the alien front, and rescue civilians in crowded cities and remote outlands around the world. Construct and expand your XCOM headquarters, recruit and coach up unique soldiers to thrust into battle, and research alien tech to enhance and multiplyLead your troops in fierce battles to defeat the alien front, and rescue civilians in crowded cities and remote outlands around the world. Construct and expand your XCOM headquarters, recruit and coach up unique soldiers to thrust into battle, and research alien tech to enhance and multiply your weapons and capabilities. Mix and match aliens and soldiers and synthesize abilities to outwit and overpower your alien opponents. Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 20
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 20
  3. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. Oct 16, 2012
    100
    Extreme fastidiousness notwithstanding, it can take around 30 hours to see through the single-player campaign in XCOM: Enemy Unknown, though like Firaxis' Civilization series, there are so many different ways to prioritize the research, engineering, economic, and tactical elements of the game that it almost begs for multiple playthroughs.
  2. Oct 5, 2012
    95
    Defending against XCOM's mysterious alien invasion is one of the most challenging, intense gaming experiences of this generation.
  3. Official PlayStation Magazine Benelux
    Nov 12, 2012
    91
    With losing the United States, we also lost our biggest source of incoming funds. And no funding equals no means to combat the enemy. XCOM is all about long term planning, which we found out the hard way. [November 2012, p.58]
  4. With every element of Xcom's complex yet utterly accessible systems – from meaningful combat tactics, to budget balancing, to life-or-death diplomatic decisions – feeding directly into every other aspect of the game, this is as compelling a world as any in recent memory.
  5. Oct 8, 2012
    88
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a triumph of inspired strategy creation. The critical will focus on the minor shortcomings, perhaps because it's not exactly like the first XCOM, but the polish, relative depth, and overall intensity is absolutely unquestionable.
  6. Oct 8, 2012
    85
    With each turn, the newest entry in this beloved strategy series heightens the sense of tension, and each defeat of a hovering alien craft thus becomes cause for celebration.
  7. Playstation Official Magazine Australia
    Oct 10, 2012
    80
    Any PlayStation gamer looking to broaden his horizons really ought to take a chance on this. If you're like us, and you figured 'turn-based' was longhand for 'boring', you'll be shocked when your 1000th (sissy) save reads: 40 hours played. [November 2012, p68]

See all 20 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 45 out of 58
  2. Negative: 3 out of 58
  1. Dec 12, 2012
    10
    So happy to see a strategy game like XCOM to be on consoles too, they're usually just for PC only, you know, for the PC master race. It's anSo happy to see a strategy game like XCOM to be on consoles too, they're usually just for PC only, you know, for the PC master race. It's an incredibly organic game: if you **** up, that's your own fault, not the games. Your tactics and strategies will effect your outcome. Also, winning isn't inevitable, you can put 20 hours in to it and lose to the aliens. The turn-based combat is very engaging, and the base management makes you feel like an actual commander. It's all very absorbing, and it's rather cheap now, so definitely pick it up when you can. Expand
  2. Jan 6, 2013
    10
    BY FAR, one of the best games of 2012. I picked this up when I bought Assassins Creed 3 and Dishonored and saved it for last (mostly because IBY FAR, one of the best games of 2012. I picked this up when I bought Assassins Creed 3 and Dishonored and saved it for last (mostly because I was more interested in the other ones). WHAT A SURPRISE... I cannot begin to describe HOW ADDICTIVE this game actually is... it has that "civilization addiction", when you keep saying to yourself: "just one more turn; just one more turn; just one more turn"; and when you notice, it's 3 AM. I just can't put it down... think of it as Final Fantasy Tactics meets Front Mission meets Civilization (sort of) plus guns, lots of guns. You manage a base, a squad and customize everything, from facilities, to weapons, to even the soldiers names, nicknames and armor color. And everything under a very cool "alien invasion" atmosphere. Must not be missed... a hidden gem. Expand
  3. Mar 13, 2013
    9
    Superb game. This has been easily the best strategy game I've played on a console in years. I can absolutely understand the varied userSuperb game. This has been easily the best strategy game I've played on a console in years. I can absolutely understand the varied user reviews as when I started first I thought it was good but not great until a friend of mine straightened me out. You absolutely have to play this game in ironman mode and ideally on Xcom difficulty. This makes you consider your choices carfeully, Every cent you spend every turn you take is the difference between success and an ass kicking. If you play on an easier setting or have the luxury of reloading the game then the tension and the thoughtfullness is taken out of the game.
    My main bug bear is the presentation, I'm not an Unreal engine fan anyways but this game can be rough around the edges. Occasionally the animations will have you guy shoot through walls which in this day and age is dissapointing hence the 1 point drop. Camera control is generally spot on but there are occasions where you can't quite tell if an enemy is within your grenade area of effect or not. Also my international crack team all have the same american accent and limtied set of vocals. None of these affect the gameplay experience but I couldn't give a game 10 without that attention to detail. Online too is relatively enjoyable (unexpectedly) There could be better effort placed on ranking systems or soem level of progression to keep it interesting and more competitive but the existing system where you have the same selection choices as your opponent based on a points spending system means at least games are always fair match ups.
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  4. Nov 29, 2012
    9
    I highly recommend getting this game, starting it up and selecting Classic Ironman difficulty and never looking back. In a sense, this is oneI highly recommend getting this game, starting it up and selecting Classic Ironman difficulty and never looking back. In a sense, this is one of my minor quibbles with the game--so many people start it on Normal, find it too easy, and then make foolish remarks about how this is "dumbed down". I played the original Xcom and beat it. A great game, but it was also from the age when everything was fresh, and so it was easy to overlook the tedious micromanaging, the cheap tactic of using dozens of rookies as cannon fodder to flush out the aliens, boring bug hunts for that last alien holed up at the other end of the map, and the fact that once your campaign got over the initial difficulty your squad became so overpowered it became boring. This game eliminates most of the drudgery but retains all the tactical goodness that is just as deep as the original or Jagged Alliance but without the need to keep a calculator handy to add up time units. I found myself doing as much fussing about the ramifications of every single action in this game as I have in other games. This game's length is just about right. You can stall the final mission if you want and enjoy battles where your 6-man squad rolls over the aliens without much fuss (even in Classic Ironman), but getting to the end game shows up at the right time and isn't a chore. It's been a long time since I've been this excited about a game. Expand
  5. Jan 27, 2013
    8
    When I first saw a preview for the new (now scrapped) installment of the XCOM franchise, I saw a Mass Effect clone set somewhere around theWhen I first saw a preview for the new (now scrapped) installment of the XCOM franchise, I saw a Mass Effect clone set somewhere around the 1950s-70s. Then "Real Fans" of the early XCOM games got their hands on the franchise and gave it a good old modern re-editing; at least to the best of their ability. Now I never played the earlier games (hell I'm not even finished with this game by the time I write this review), so I won't compare this game with past installments. THE PROS: 1)a sci-fi turn based strategy game that will truly test players gaming skills where the challenge level will not deteriorate as your squad mates level up or get equipped with better weapons/armor/items but the enemy AI; even the missions themselves, will feel like they're actually leveling up along with you and have strategies lined up to make your mission to safe the Earth and repel the invading aliens a long, hard-fought war. Players will gain a sense of accomplishment or satisfaction for completing each mission, plus if players want a greater challenge, players can turn off the loading function for past saved/auto-saved files for added intrigue. 2) The management of your HQ/Main Base isn't as in-dept as say a Command & Conquer or Civilization, but it's simple and enjoyable enough for any players to get into and quickly understand what action should be first taken before depleting your income or before dispatching your team to their next mission. so it may be simple, but it will force the player to plan ahead and prepare for any scenario. This may be minor, but it shows the quality of strategy in this game however minor
    3) The franchises biggest draw, in having the player feel emotionally connected/invested/attached to their squad members whom they themselves created and customized and leveled up through out the whole game from your first mission; where he/she is the last surviving team member and in the end just barely manage to draw out enough strength to kill the last enemy unit standing to give you that "Mission Accomplished" ending. All the way through many more missions, establishing themselves as your go to guy/gal, to their final mission where in his/her last stand of infiltrating an enemy ship got shot down by enemy fire while leading the vanguard of the XCOM team to the final chamber of the ship and having his/her name added onto the Hall of Fallen Soldiers (a memorial for all your forever dead creations of squad members). 4) Use of alien tech for human advantage is available. The CONS: (first three will be more nip-picking than actually cons): 1) the story line isn't anything special but it's still enjoyable; aliens invade earth, earth assembles a special team to repel aliens, the team defeats big boss, the end. What I don't understand is, if the aliens are such a major threat and the major countries are in need of assistant, why would the game designers have the countries lose all trust in the XCOM Project and leave to fend for themselves when their threat level/meter goes beyond red, when they have no means to defend themselves and is already being slaughtered by the aliens when they know they will just either be annihilated or enslaved. Couldn't the game designers just have them simply be overrun by the enemy and the base just lost connection with that country, I just don't like the human logic in this story. 2) The characters are forgettable, generic, and uninteresting (that soldier guy who informs you of any Intel during missions, the ?European? female scientist, and the ?Asian? engineer), evening their design and voice-overs. However the many different aliens and their autopsy reports/minor background infos are somewhat interesting, but still generic for my taste of aliens. 3) The character customization is really lackluster for your squad mates to say the lease; different people from different nations and ethic backgrounds but no personality in their voice-overs (american male voice 1, 2, .... and american female voice 1, 2, ...), generic hair styles plus three DLC masks of questionable design; ?Halo?. Generic and bad facial hair designs where different color palettes just won't cut it. 4) Only 4 members to start out with than up to the max of 6 after in game purchase of 2 extra slots? Couldn't there be more in a team since the EARTH IS UNDER FIRE AND IN THE BRINK OF DESTRUCTION?!
    5) Lack of manual aiming of main and secondary firearms but can aim with grenades and a "one shot only" rocket?! With no option to bring more rocket ammo?!?! In fact, only two item slots for each to carry? 6) And what's with the aiming in the later half of this game, my sniper misses on a 90% but my support hits with a 48%, while enemies BEHIND A WALL can hit my guys from a far with a 23% - 51%?! (oh come on my guy was fully covered too).
    7) Not to mention the lack of control over the choice of character classes, it's randomize
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  6. Oct 7, 2013
    8
    The first hours of playing, I was ready to give this game a 10/10. The content and gameplay that is in the game is just brilliant. But as theThe first hours of playing, I was ready to give this game a 10/10. The content and gameplay that is in the game is just brilliant. But as the hours went on, I found little new elements. The campaign is almost like a Fifa soccer campaign in the sense that the whole setup for how you approach the story is reset for every single round. There is little sense of continual progress, of exploration, from hour to hour. The changes in the level design and in unlocking new technologies have little effect on the core gameplay. It lacked the kind of artful and intricate storytelling I've come to expect from modern games. And as a 'manager' or 'simulation' type game, I miss something technically enlightening to take away from the game. I didn't learn anything about those laser rifles, or about what the aliens were out for, etc. The rounds of "kill the aliens on this map" just went on and on, with the added side tasks of maintaining the military base. After playing a good chunk of the campaign, it started to feel worn and pointless, so I kind of lost interest. Ultimately I recommend the game to the wide public, but strategy fans will get most appreciation out of its ingenuity. Oh, and don't forget to turn off the action sequences as they are only there to add empty 'oomph'. Expand
  7. Aug 18, 2016
    0
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. First of all let me state that this is a totally objective review of this "GAME" if you even can call it that.
    If you are starting this game, thinking "sweet, another xcom game" you will have a bad time.
    Let me tell you this is NOT a XCOM game. This is only a cash grab piece of software raping the original franchise.
    I played this game for 5 minutes and couldnt keep playing because i couldnt stop vomiting over my hands and controller and the blood in my eyes also irritated me.
    This POS software is a discrace for humanity and should be teleported back into 1940 into the chambers with all developing partners involved.

    This is a dumbed down game and ironically it gets advertised as an turn-based strategy game.
    This is a Kids software, let me tell you this.
    I dont even want to waste my time and list all things wrong with this cashgrab, it should be burned like the books in turkey atm.
    Sid Meier, Jeff Briggs and Brian Reynolds should be beheaded infront of the Ulus Square in Ankara on an Scaffold for the Masses and everbody at home watching on Al Jazeera applauding.
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See all 58 User Reviews