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Mixed or average reviews - based on 30 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.7

Mixed or average reviews- based on 106 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: 12 out of 30
  2. Negative: 1 out of 30
  1. Aug 19, 2013
    80
    The Bureau is Enemy Unknown’s hyperactive younger sibling who delivers something different while still fitting in well with its predecessors.
  2. Aug 20, 2013
    80
    Although not perfect, The Bureau is a brilliant squad shooter with an intriguing story and brains.
  3. Aug 31, 2013
    80
    The Bureau is a smart action game that combines the tactical aspect of Mass Effect with the simplicity of Bioshock. A surprisingly solid story makes this a great individual game, even if it struggles to find it's place in the XCOM-series.
  4. Aug 20, 2013
    70
    Given its fractured development and lumpen structure, the fact that The Bureau is actually pretty good is arguably victory enough. It's certainly the "contemporary" game 2K wanted - but it's never as inventive or memorable as the strategy game that inspired it.
  5. 65
    The Bureau: XCOM Declassified aims at combining Mass Effect’s combat with the trappings of XCOM: Enemy Unknown, but it fails to live up to either. The action is capable of offering some thrills, but The Bureau is a poorly put together game with a list of problems that prevent it from rising above mediocre. Disappointing.
  6. Aug 23, 2013
    60
    As is, The Bureau makes for a decent enough 10 hours of alien-obliterating combat, but all the way through you'll find yourself lamenting the many aspects that feel like they could have, and should have, been better.
  7. Sep 1, 2013
    42
    The XCOM franchise deserves better than this, an experiment to take XCOM out of its comfort zone that clearly went awry.

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 28
  2. Negative: 7 out of 28
  1. Aug 20, 2013
    10
    The Bureau is very good game. It has a strong tactical component, good plot, and nice graphic, battles is very tense and hard. AI of enemies is pretty smart, they may surround you, attack you from behind. In my opinion: one of the best shooters of last five years. Expand
  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
    Expand
  3. Aug 20, 2013
    9
    I doesn't played XCOM games before but this tactical TPS is amazing.The story is beautiful, eventful and interesting.The graphics are not the best and i meet some bugs.This game is one of the biggest surprise in 2013. Expand
  4. Oct 20, 2013
    8
    Concept: Create a story that serves as a prequel to the modern XCOM gaming exploits that we know and are familiar with, while creating some new takes on certain elements and the gameplay itself, as well as presenting entirely new options and characters.

    Graphics: It has a similar art style to that of XCOM: Enemy Unknown, and yet colors in The Bureau are slightly less colorful, and contrast more with their environment- presenting some interestingly vivid and muted combinations here and there throughout the alien battlefield.

    Sound: What would surely be a tense and suspenseful musical score is undermined at nearly every turn by the sounds of reloading, healing, and taking out enemies. Sure, these sounds are all well and fine, in moderation anyways.

    Playability: It truly gets better as you go, as you'll later feel naked without your learned abilities and powers in the first few battles, should you choose to play the game over again. As you progress and learn new tricks and upgrade some older ones, the gameplay also gets a bit easier to handle and becomes more fun. As it is at the beginning however, it could serve as a major turnoff to many players unwilling to give the game a second shot later.

    Entertainment: 2K manages to craft an entertaining and exciting gameplay experience, even with the myriad of issues that often tags along with it in terms of story and combat. Beyond that all however, it is an excellent tactical concoction.

    Replay Value: Moderate.

    Overall Score: 8.0
    Expand
  5. Mar 8, 2014
    7
    Those suggesting the tactical interface and commands don't work in this game I would suggest simply don't know how to play a game like this, the command system and combat works remarkably well you just have to stay on top of it and constantly issue new orders to your NPCs.
    Decent graphics, pretty much what you expect out of the story line, average music and sound but overall a very enjoyable experience, I would say unlike Enemy Unknown, which is undoubtedly the better game, Declassified has little to no replay value, but you should enjoy your first romp through.
    Expand
  6. Aug 25, 2013
    6
    Remember years ago when the devs of this game had announced a first person XCOM that was like a detective game in some ways? I was interested it sounded fresh and had the potential to be amazing but instead we got a third person tactical shooter with A.I that usually has to be baby sited constantly, don't get me wrong this game will appeal to a lot of people but if you think this is another RTS XCOM you're gonna be disappointed.
    Want a 3rd person cover based tactical shooter with the XCOM theme? buy this game
    Want a RTS XCOM? wait for XCOM: Enemy Within
    Expand
  7. Aug 23, 2013
    2
    As an XCOM fan I feel cheated. I really wish I'd read up on the game more before I bought it. I bought it because it's XCOM, but it's not...
    People have said it's tactical, well not like any other XCOM is. In the time it takes you to issue a few orders out the enemy is on the move and has been shooting you (albeit in slow mo) while you have been doing so. During the course of my first mission I had killed 70+ with my character, while my AI controlled counterparts had gotten 15 between them (and ok I had a few fights before they joined me but still).

    Maybe it's me, maybe I just wanted another Enemy Unknown or Apocolypse game. Maybe I don't like change. But still, this is not for me, past XCOM games have been games I enjoyed while watching the tele in the background, games I can relax to, this is just frustrating.

    Pros:
    - Story did seem interesting
    - Lots of enemies

    Cons:
    - Real time combat
    - Slow mo squad order system
    - AI or lack of
    - Lack of 'checkpoints' or save feature
    - Awful squad mechanic
    - Awful shooting mechanic
    Expand

See all 28 User Reviews