User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 325 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 25 out of 325

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. Oct 10, 2012
    Firaxis has definitely delivered with XCOM: Enemy Unknown, as it's as polished as you could ever want it to be across all three platforms.

    New players to the game will soon find themselves becoming indulged in the decision making process of the game. Should I invest in better armor? Should I help China or USA? Each decision comes with it's own rewards, which greatly benefit your fight
    against the alien menace.

    The control scheme on all systems is excellent, even though the original XCOM was a PC game, they fit on both consoles too.

    The story of XCOM is long and rewarding, and the loss of teammates only spurs you on to fight harder.

    Overall, a superb game, I have yet to find anything bad about it.
  2. Oct 31, 2012
    XCOM is a beautiful game that has taken elements of two distinct genres. First there is a fluid turn-based shooter that is seamless in its frame rate and that delivers both integrated cinematic and large degree of creativity in the strategy it allows players to explore. Then behind the scenes is an in-depth management system that provides users with the ability to tailor their experience to fit their desired strategy. There is incredible depth in this management system. You can decide to spend money and man power in building new facilities, or focus on upgrading your field units in order to best utilize the different classes available, or you can focus on trying to mitigate the outcries of nations who you are not able to help. XCOM even allows you to trade on the black market and provides an easy to understand balance sheet that tracks your revenue and expenses (Yes I Know those are Income Statement Items). On top of that level of management XCOM has added a small yet incredibly effective element in that you can personalize your squad. This adds a level of emotion rarely brought to games. Being able to tell your friends they have been promoted or killed in action is a unique conversation point that drives word-of-mouth exposure for XCOM. Overall addictive, strategic, unsympathetic, and worth your money. Expand
  3. Oct 9, 2012
    Having spent a day playing it all doubts are gone that it might not match the classic x-com feel. This game is great and the extra care they put in to make it great on PC as well shows. More than enough depth for a re-introduction of the series to get people hooked, good difficulty level options, ability to fail, plenty of "oh no" and "damnit!" moments, cleans graphics work well.

    only criticisms so far (haven't beaten it yet) are they could make base navigation a bit easier and faster, same for managing troop equipment. Expand
  4. Oct 30, 2012
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a challenging sci-fi, turn-based, tactical game that assigns you as the commander of a military operation, and the first line of defense against an invading alien menace. With most 'Tactics' style games that release these days being typically medieval, XCOM is a breath of fresh air in the genre. Fans of the original XCOM games released back in the 90's may find this new addition to the franchise a little dumbed down, but that doesn't stop it from being an excellent, solid strategy to challenge all who will bravely defend our wonderful planet.

    Even on the lowest difficulty, XCOM can certainly provide some challenge to those who may be newer to this type of video game. You start off in command of four soldiers, who each have two moves they can make per turn. Each move can be used for either moving a certain amount of tiles, firing one of two equipped weapons, using one of the soldiers abilities, or simply ducking for cover. The greatest foe in the game is the luck of the roll, as the farther your unit is from an enemy, the lower the chance to hit, but moving in closer will put the soldier at greater risk, and may alert more hidden aliens. Taking cover behind objects on the map can provide you either half cover or full cover, and being smart about when and where you position your troops is necessary, as the game is very unforgiving to your mistakes. The combat can get tense when you fire a shot with an 85% hit chance and it still misses, but with each enemy kill comes a sigh of relief, and with each mission victory, the joy of accomplishment. The easier difficulty settings can help, but later on the difficulty may turn of some strategy noobs. Nonetheless, it's a great system, if a bit more simplified from the original XCOM.

    Troops that survive more missions and get more kills will level up, allowing you to give them addition perks and abilities. In addition to leveling up, researching and buying new armors, weapons, and other various tools in your base gives the game much customization. You can also build more labs and workshops in your base to decrease research and build times, as well as other faculties for more researching more advanced upgrades.

    Every in-game month a council with review everything you have done in that time, and provide you with further credits. You can earn more credits by sending up satellites to monitor specific parts of the world. When one of these satellites picks up an alien UFO, a short mini-game will begin, where you send out a Reaver jet to attack and, hopefully, destroy it. Once destroyed, you can explore the crash site, kill any remaining alien survivors, and reclaim further resources for studying back at HQ.

    In previous XCOM games, the story was deep, long, and memorable. Sadly however, Enemy Unknown's story is very short and simple. The dialog throughout the game is generic and uninteresting, and completing it ends the game, making you either reload an old save or start a new game. The story missions and objectives can be fun, but thankfully you can just keep playing the random missions and shooting down UFOs, extending the game to whatever length fits your fancy.

    The graphics aren't totally phenomenal, but many of the animations and designs look excellent. Each of your soldiers are fully customizable in appearance, but designing and coloring your units armor requires you to spend extra cash on dlc. Each alien is memorable in both their looks, and the tactics required to take down each one, and each time a new alien is introduced, comes an interesting mix of fear and curiosity. XCOM isn't without it's bugs however, and seeing people shooting through walls, or textures disappear when they're not supposed to can be sadly frequent.

    For those of you who can appreciate a challenge, XCOM is a decent purchase. It may be simplified in some ways compared to the originals, and the odd graphics hiccup will occur, but it remains a very solid and tense strategy game.

    Overall score:
  5. Oct 20, 2012
    For me XCOM: Enemy Unknown takes the best of the original XCOM and refines the rest into a better game in almost every way. I like to start with the negatives which are... 1. The LOS (Line of Sight) can be a bit unrealistic and lead to a frustrating death of a squad member from time to time. For example, I had two soldiers behind a huge metal shipping container, and an alien killed them both in 2 moves from an impossible angle, shooting thru the solid container without damaging it but killing my men... plus the alien had no LOS of my soldiers... frustrating. On the up side, this happens rarely. Because of the randomly rare LOS issue I save my game at the starting of each turn. 2. A minor gripe, but it is annoying to have to use the R & L bumper to switch between team members. Allowing me to just move the cursor over a soldier and selecting them would have been nice. OK, on to the good stuff. There are basically three parts to this game, building a base, putting up satellites and shooting down UFO's, and lastly the turn based tactical assaults with your squad. All this is tied together with a financial system. You have to balance research of new tech, with building your base up, while buying fighter aircraft and launching satellites, while arming and gearing up your squad... and the order in which you do this will make or break you. It can be a difficult to choose a priority, when so many pressing issues present themselves at any given moment... but this is what makes the game great. In the tactical combat part of the game, then alien enemy are as varied as the tactics to take them down. Your squad starts out as a bunch or peons, but if they can survive 10+ missions, they will become elite warriors and the bane of the aliens. It takes time to level your soldiers and resources to arm and armor them. Because of this, you do not want to go Rambo in a mission and get them all killed. Always think a move ahead, when in doubt send up a scout (Assault troop is good at this). And remember, always use cover and Overwatch. My favorite tactic is Rope-a-dope... being, set up an ambush, send my assault solder out as bait, when he makes contact, have him retreat towards the rest of the squad, then blunt the aliens attack with Overwatch fire... then just kill the remaining aliens and watch the rest of them run for their lives. Rinse & repeat. This works in most but not all situations. Some enemies take some creative tactics to defeat. Minor gripes aside, XCOM; Enemy Unknown is an excellent and in-depth tactical game with countless hours of fun to be had. I give it a 9 out of 10 Expand
  6. Nov 4, 2012
    Once again, Firaxis deserves a major pat on the back. As with the rest of the X-Com loving world, we looked at 2K Marin's upcoming FPS with horror and disgust; they were going to take a good franchise and turn it into idiot chow. Then in comes Firaxis and rescues it. For those who were either not yet gamers in the 1990s or just didn't play X-COM, you ran a team of international military experts tasked with saving the world from alien invasion. It took tactical genius, strategic foresight, preparedness, and a sort of cunning on your part to excel. Given the limitations of today's gaming crowd who, let's be honest here, are more twitch gamers than long-term players (which is why 4X, civilization and city builders are on the endangered species list), Firaxis did a great job adapting the grand old warhorse of X-COM to today. The features that were trimmed off weren't too critical (building out multiple bases on multiple continents was a pain, admit it), and what remains is not only a faithful reproduction of the game, but also highly polished and sporting a refined and efficient control mechanic. It's easy to say that a turn-based tactical squad game couldn't survive on a console, and in 99% of cases, you'd be right. X-COM is the exception to the rule; the control interface is powerful yet simple, intuitive, flexible, and provides the player with all of the tools necessary to run a tactical squad through a controller. I'd never believed that it was possible to run a tactical game without a mouse, but Firaxis' X-COM proved me wrong. Gameplay is engaging, missions varied and, with their random-generation mechanic, never repetitive. Soldiers are customizable (mostly), and options for outfitting your squad are powerful enough to allow for great tactical flexibility. This is not a perfect game, though; so the hero-worship ends here and the griping begins. One, the limited squad size in the beginning of the game creates some difficult situations, even on easy difficulty. Two, making money is extremely difficult in the game, which will slow your expansion and improvement of capabilities. And three, there is an aspect of grinding in the game as you just plow through days hoping for either a payday or some magical breakthrough. (Griping ends now.) Overall, I'm quite pleased with X-COM and whether you're an old fan of the franchise or are just thirsting for a game that requires a little more brainpower than aim-and-fire, go ahead and get yourself a copy of X-COM: Enemy Unknown; you should enjoy it. Expand
  7. Nov 13, 2012
    XCOM high fives the genitals of your favorite wishes. Some may find internal bleeding, yet others a blood pinata. Aliens with boom boom huck jams make your friends cry. You will climb towards the stars on the bodies that fall before you.
  8. Oct 17, 2012
    great overall game experience. similar enough to the original that it should satisfy an nostalgic fan however don't listen to the spoiled fans who no matter what look for things to pick apart in this game because its a remake. this is a great strategy based combat game and i would recommend it to anyone who's tired of playing first person shooters that may require less strategy and more brawn. loved it and am hoping to see another installment in the franchise in this style. Expand
  9. Oct 10, 2012
    To be honest, UFO Defense being my favorite game of all time, I've been awaiting this game for nearly 20 years. While no game is perfect and every game has its shortcomings and frustrating moments, the new XCOM comes close to perfection, in my honest opinion. For starters, turn-based strategy has been lacking on our shelves in the last decade, especially the squad-based mixed with managerial gameplay this game has to offer (and that UFO Defense pioneered back in 1994). So I downloaded the demo from Steam, and I could see that the game had potential, but the demo fell short because it ended very quickly for the XCOM veteran that I am. I was disappointed when I read the entries for this game before it came out, because it seemed toned down a lot from the original. While this is somewhat true, I think it's also for the best. The elements from the original are still there, although they removed some annoying ones like disembarking, per example. To begin, on the managerial side of things, research is still there (you bet) with a lot of options unlocked depending on your mission results; you have to manage your bases and buildings, you level up your soldiers as they gain more experience and specialize them; you can sell equipment and artifacts for some extra cash; you have to keep the nations happy about your progress by deploying satellites and responding to abductions; you still manufacture weapons and equipment for your soldiers. Manufacturing is now instant but costs money on the spot, as to prevent you to mass manufacture and sell your stuff like the original did (which seriously was too easy and needed gotten rid of). Instead of play, fast and fast-forward, now the game is paused as long as you're in management view, with the possibility to fast-forward from the Mission Control view. Interceptors are returning and still trigger missions for downed UFOs, and have the possibility to get destroyed if not outfitted with the latest and greatest (and still do even then). There is a whole lot to manage, just like in the first one, and the tutorial covers the basics, but you'll still have to be curious and check out the menus for the extra options like soldier training. Speaking of the tutorial, it is painfully long for veterans, although I can understand that the newcomers will need it as not to be overwhelmed with the sheer amount of management required by this game. It's scripted, it's frustrating, because you can't do what you want to do when you want it during the tutorial (e.g.: can't rotate the camera until you get told how to, even if you already know). It's quite lengthy and spans a few missions (the Steam demo covers about a sixth of it), obviously because the game is somewhat complex, but gives you a great idea of what to expect from this game. On the tactical side of things, things have been simplified a lot. Instead of managing AP, your characters now get two moves at start, improved depending on the abilities you get for each soldier as they gain XP. You can move once and shoot, or move twice, or move once and use reaction fire or defense, or just shoot once, or use a special ability, etc. It gives a good pace to it. Veterans will most likely move once each of their soldier to spot enemies then react, or just use reaction fire after the first move to make sure not to get stabbed in the back. Also, you can't gear up your soldiers with 5 grenades or 2 grenades and medkits, etc. You basically choose a primary weapon, a secondary, an armor and an item to carry for each soldier (you ought to use the items relevant to each soldier's class), making the game a lot more challenging. Carrying a stun gun instead of a grenade may mean a soldier will die, but there's nothing like bringing a X-Ray alive for questioning. The whole system works well, it really does. The game give you hints by having soldiers and crew telling you about enemy behavior or events, like VIPs dying or enemies retreating. You still have to listen for these, and they come in handy, but don't make it too easy or too annoying, even when obvious, because they don't use popups or explicitly require you to react to them. Hit probabilities are actually important, meaning that you can still hit enemies quite often even with less of 50% hit chance. Aliens can destroy cover or blow up stuff to kill you quickly or force you to revise your strategy, and so can you. Just like the managerial aspect, tactical gameplay feels very well balanced and engaging. To add to the engagement, camera events following your soldier in third person occur often when moving or shooting, giving a certain tension to it, never knowing if your soldier will get blasted in the face when turning around that corner. Voice acting and sound effects leave something to be desired, but aren't annoying or too repetitive, although pretty generic. But in the end, I hope you enjoy it as much as I do, and will. Expand
  10. Oct 12, 2012
    One of the best squad base strategy games I have ever played. Difficult but fair and immensely engaging. If you are a "gamer" than you owe it to yourself to play this little masterpiece.
  11. Oct 10, 2012
    I have been waiting for this game to be made for a very long time. I am a huge fan of the original and consider it to be my #1 game of all time. Xcom is not 100% perfect, but Metacritic doesn't allow for 9.5 so I rounded up. =)

    First....the bad bits: minor technical issues like cameras giving you a fantastic view of the action from behind a wall. It happens a bit more frequently
    than I would like, but it doesn't get in the way of gameplay so this is a very minor annoyance.

    A bit over simplified from the original. You no longer have the ability to over load your soldiers with every piece of gear you want. You have a main weapon, a back up (pistol), and one addition utility item. This could be a grenade, med kit, stunner, or some added armor. But you only get one. This feels very frustrating to a hard core fan of the original. Setting this aside, and as much as I wish it was the old way, I think it was the right choice. It makes the game much more accessible to less experienced players and heavily reduces the complexities this game already has an over abundance of.

    There is one last issue and this again is a fairly minor one. The sounds and music of the original game were so memorable and iconic they stuck with me these last twenty far the audio of this game is not grabbing me. This doesn't affect gameplay so its a very minor issue, but still worth mentioning.

    The good: Everything else. The smooth and intuitive controls. The streamlined actions where units will crouch and take cover automatically when next to cover. The tension you feel when you see a Crysilisk skulking a little to close to your soldiers. I love the new base and how they cleaned up the mess of managing all of your equipment.

    Even with all they have streamlined, there is a ton of strategy and choice. I could see playing this game for a long time. It makes me so happy to have a modernized version of my favorite game of all time.

    Thank you Firaxis!
  12. Oct 16, 2012
    This game is phenomenal. It is unlike I have every played on my consoles before. I was getting tired of the same style of shooters, and this makes you play in a completely unique way. Even though I haven't played this style of game before, I don't see how I can go back. The gameplay is very deep and gives you insane options. I loved going back to base and making new weapons to then later use on the battlefield. The visuals are solid, and the music is magnificent. I already beat it once, and can't wait to start a new game, which I haven't said for many games before! Expand
  13. Nov 21, 2012
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown is one of the best games of the 2012! I suggest it to everyone. Specially for everyone who loves turn-based strategy games.

    XCOM: Enemy Unknown beginning is very simple and straight-forward. Aliens are invading Earth and player, as the commander of international defence organization XCOM, needs to save Earth! You as base commander need to manage XCOm finances and
    resources, choose soldiers for missions, and guide them through the battles.

    For everyone with tactical thinking it's easy to play with normal difficult. If you think about your moves carefully then you probably not lose any soldier at all. Specially if you have one or two medics with you. But if you are one of players from CoD, who likes to take your team to storming into a UFO crash site, then you need to prepare yourself that your soldiers will die very easily! And you need to replace them again and again. Alien AI is not dumb. So if they see you, they are probably trying to flank you. Or if you are for some weird reasons left your team together in group somewhere, then AI will happily throw some grenades there. So if you make wrong choice your soldiers will suffering. Most combats is quick and bloody!

    If your mission is success and soldiers is back, they get EXP and can earn new level. New level gives new skills. Later they even acquire nicknames.

    This game is made for PC, but still it's enjoyable for console owners too. Interface is good and easy. Graphics is not best, but because game is really good we can skip that part. :) Same time voice acting is very good and there is a lot nice jokes. I suggest that game to everyone! Specially for strategy game fans! I rarely give 10 points for games. Truth is that last game who got from me 10 points was Fallout II. :) So it means this game is really good! :)
  14. Dec 19, 2012
    Xcom: Enemy Unknown
    Xcom is a re-make of a game released in 1994 of the same name. I remember playing the first game back then and absolutely loving it. It had the right level of strategy to keep a player engaged for months! This is where
  15. Dec 3, 2012
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a fantastic strategy game. Barring a few minor glitches that happen every once and a blue moon the game runs great and is a blast to play. The game is able to get you into the swing of things early on and you easily get a hang of managing resources and upgrading your capabilities to blast the aliens to hell. Missions are always tense especially if you have high level soldiers that you have spent hours specing out and leveling and you don't want them to die. Also on a side note naming them is stupid fun (Rick James tragically died on a high profile mission for me). There are always consequences to failing or succeeding in XCOM which again makes the game tense. It is also very challenging at all turns and the death or injuries of squad members adds another layer of complexity. XCOM: Enemy Unknown is definitely worth your time and I highly recommend it especially if your a sci-fi nerd! Expand
  16. Oct 26, 2012
    No, its not as in-depth as the original. No, its not as tense. No, its not as big. Yes, it is one of the best games (in my opinion THE best) of 2012. If you approach this game as a spiritual successor or re-imagining of the original then you will be pleasantly surprise; Just don't go into it expecting the UFO/XCOM of the 90s with updated graphics. Its tense, enthralling, intelligent, in-depth and the turn-based combat will have you chewing your fingernails out with anxiety. I'm not normally a fan of strategy games but XCOM gets the mixture of action, management, and strategy just right so as to make the game approachable for simpletons like myself. GET IT. ITS EFFING FANTASTIC. Expand
  17. Dec 31, 2012
    X com is an excellent game all around. If you are even remotely interested in this game, and are looking for something instead of pretty much everything else out there... just buy this game already. The graphics are quite capable although not stellar. Your soldiers do look pretty cool while battling, as do the details of your base as you build it. Highly recommend X Com, regardless of your interest in strategy games. Its pretty interesting in the sense that one wrong move can cost you. So it can be intense even though its a turn based strategy game, which is a good thing. There is already some DLC out which is not too bad and recommended as it adds a little more story to the game. Just all around quality. Expand
  18. Oct 12, 2012
    One of the best strategy games I have played in the last few years. It's fun, addicting, and your choices have real consequences. Soldier deaths are permanent and wow is the game hard when you ratchet up the difficulty. Fireaxis made a brilliant game and I can't wait for further installments.
  19. Oct 12, 2012
    X-Com is back! After the dissapointment of hearing it will be rebooted as an FPS they made the right call and had Fireaxis the creators of Civilization make a strategy game. It's as fun and addicting as the original was. The graphics are very nice it runs great and the story is very interesting. The multiplayer is really fun as well just needs some more maps.
  20. Oct 12, 2012
    PLEASE IGNORE ALL THE IDIOTS GIVING IT ZERO! THIS IS A GOOD GAME! Seriously though, if you want to give it zero, go and crawl under a rock and die. Because you obviously have no idea how bad games can be. Just because it may not be what you thought it should does not mean you should give it a 0. And if im brutally honest, the fact that you cant customize their hair cuts, or you have to endure endless micromanaging, doesnt really bother me. Im happy with the game. It is good, it is great, and all you weirdo's who vote 0 can go join a club and call it "club anonymous". Expand
  21. Oct 30, 2012
    I have vague memories of the original Xcom. I remember that it was very difficult, yet I came back again and again. With the new Xcom, I don't find it anywhere near as difficult (mind you, I'm playing on normal difficulty), but I return to it like a junkie to heroin. The graphics are average, the story is almost non-existent, and there's nothing in the sound/music to write home about. But the game-play. That's what so many developers have forgotten about. I don't need 300 guns, 20 outfits, crazy new mechanics, lens flares, or DLC map-packs. Just give me good game-play. Each battle feels like a chess match. You'll find yourself planning out moves ahead of time, trying to guess what your opponent will do. Deciding whether to go for the kill and risk a high ranking soldier, or play it safe and fall back to cover. How many medpaks are left? Do I have any smoke-grenades? And these are important decisions. Soldiers will rank up and gain skills. But if they die on the battlefield, they're gone forever. This especially hurts if you've decided to name all your soldiers after people you know (You can customize their name, nickname, and appearance). Plus you're going to need high ranking soldiers if you plan to beat the game, which isn't guaranteed. This is something else that modern games are often missing. The ability to fail. In between battles, you'll need to do some resource management. Spend money on satellites and increase your monthly funding? Spend it on equipment research? Buy new gear for your team? Train new soldiers? All of them are necessary, but not all of them can be done at once. Real-time strategy games are few and far between on the Xbox, so if you enjoy RTS, pick this up immediately. Everyone else should give this a try first before considering buying. Expand
  22. Nov 4, 2012
    Part strategy game and part RPG, XCOM delivers on both ends to the fans of each genres. It's an engaging game that requires skill, focus, and tact. While the story and graphics won't win any awards, the game is thoroughly interesting and the longer you progress through the game, everything is hugely satisfying and rewarding. It plays smoothly for anyone to pick up but offers a challenge to every type of gamer, from the casual to the hardcore. It's one of 2012's best games. Expand
  23. Nov 2, 2012
    I went ahead and got this game purely because my Dad told me how amazing the original was on the PS1. He said it was strategy at its best, it was scary at times, and it was difficult with lasting re-playability. I'm a strategy fan, not a real hardcore fan but I do like strategy. Strategy games that have disappointed me though are those on console. For some reason most of PC experience with strategy is memorable and my console experience not so much. Games like Halo Wars and Command and Conquer felt awkward on the Xbox. They were fun no doubt, but awkward. Xcom is different though. Xcom is one of the few turnbased strategy games on the console. In fact before Xcom the onlyTurn based game I played was CIV Revolution on Xbox. (I did like that a lot too although it felt dumbed down.)
    Xcom escapes this awkward feeling by being Turn Based. I can take my time, grab a snack, and think. Although I often like the thrill of rushing through missions and taking risks that I probably shouldn't. This game allows me to play at my own pace. That's why I love the turn based genre and Xcom is one of the best I've played since Fallout. It fulfills everything my Dad said it would, it is strategic, it is scary at times, and it's pretty difficult. Most of all, its rewarding. Coming out of encounters with the time unscaved is an amazing feeling.

    I highly recommend this game to people who like turn based strategy.
  24. Oct 12, 2012
    Sfc1971 has alternate motives for giving this game a 1. His reasons have nothing to do with the game itself and metacritic should protect its site from people who do reviews like that. I put a 10 to offset his 1 but I feel its an 8.5. If you want a challenge a game where you have to earn the ending and have fun doing it this is your game. This is not a shooter. Its a gamers version of risk but more detailed. Issues with the graphics and aiming like thinking u have an open shot at an opponent when u don't hurt the game but not badly enough to kill experience. Could also use more stuff in multiplayer Expand
  25. Nov 13, 2012
    Having never played the original x-com series, i was pleasantly surprised when brought it. This game is one of the best games i have ever played on the Xbox. I Recommend to anyone and everyone.
  26. Nov 16, 2012
    This game made me happy. Because it makes me happy and nostalgic, to the days of hardcore games with real consequences. It's been a long time since a game mad me want to throw my controller in frustration....... but I'm Glad you did XCOM
  27. Oct 31, 2012
    Excellent strategy game! Good graphics,good music,good and easy to learn gameplay. My score 9.5 . Hope to see a sequel in this dryness of strategy games .
  28. Jan 5, 2013
    I never though I could give a 1010 rating for a game. But XCOM is just the perfect game for me. It can be extremely tough on higher difficulty. The option to play on "Iron Man" mode makes all the difference. On this mode, you cannot reload after a bad move. Just live with it. Every game should have this. It feels the same as in Dark Souls. Learn from your mistakes or you won't get far.

    The game is complexe yet simple to understand and play. You have many types of decisions to make, from which country to protect with a satellite, what gear to build for your troops, what research to prioririze (as in Civilization) to how to fight on the field. Battles are like a multilayered chess game. You never tire of it (as long as you don't plys the game on easy or normal mode).

    I highly recommend this game. It's even better than what you would think from watching a review. You just need to try it!
  29. Nov 15, 2012
    XCOM is my Game of the Year so far. The turn-based strategy and research/base-building mechanics have kept me gripped enough to beat the game on Normal, then restart on Classic Ironman for the "hardcore" experience. It just nails so many aspects of the strategy genre, while cutting back on some of the cumbersome things that would scare away newcomers. The only gripe I have about the game is that sometimes, on Classic difficulty at least, it feels like the aliens get an unfair bonus to accuracy. It can be frustrating when your entire team fires a round and misses, then the alien kills you in one shot. That being said, Classic and Impossible were built to be a challenge, and I had a blast playing it on Normal. Maybe I'm just not hardcore enough... Either way, XCOM is an instant classic and a must-buy if you have even a passing interest in strategy or war games. Expand
  30. Nov 18, 2012
    I'll be honest. This is my first XCOM game. However, this is just one of a long chain of Firaxis game's that I've owned. Not to mention one of my favorites. Just like Civilization, this game is a glorified time-sink that'll draw you in as you fight aliens, manage your teams, research new weapons and equipment, and build your base. I lost count how many times I told myself, "I'll stop once I finish this research" only to keep going after being enticed by the discovery of new research projects. The combat is heavily strategy-reliant as this game outright punishes poor decisions. You have to be careful with picking what equipment your soldiers are going to use in a mission, choosing the best cover for them to hide behind during combat, even the order in which your soldiers fire at the enemy can be a factor. Believe me, there have been moments when I held off on having my sniper (by far by best soldier) pick off some easy targets just so he could be used as a precautionary measure to fight off any extraterrestrial threats that may emerge from the shadows to flank my team. Which brings me to my next topic. Difficulty. When playing XCOM, Murphy's Law is almost always enforced as any mission, no matter how well it's going, can instantly go horribly wrong. Personally I find that it adds tension to the combat, making each successful mission feel extremely satisfying, even moreso if you're able to avoid any deaths on your team. I would recommend this game to those who're looking for a good strategy game and would welcome a challenge. Expand
  31. Nov 21, 2012
    As a big fan of the original XCom on PC back in the 80's, a nice remake/homage has been needed for a long long time.

    At first I was concerned that the 2 phase tactical movement might be an issue, as well as only having the ability for 6 soldiers on the field at a time. However, now that I've been playing it for 5 days straight and unable to put it down, I am very happy to say that it
    has not affected my joy of the game.

    I think tactical strategy games in the future need to take some of the ideas from this game from now on. Just as the first XCom was kind of a trail blazer for the best tactical strategy games that came after it, this new XCom should be the trail blazer for these styles of games in the future.

    Playing the 360 version.
  32. Dec 10, 2012
    Great re-imagining of an old classic. It stays true to the original as far as overall feel. I still get terrified when a cyberdisc or a chryssalid appear. They have simplified a lot of things from the old game. There's no more reason to do any math to decide if you have enough TUs to move to a position, rotate to face a good direction, kneel, and still be able to shoot during the enemies turn. The simplified moving is awesome. The skills as a soldier levels up is also a great enhancement. It makes you even more attached to your veterans and makes their deaths so painful. Also, reaction shots are reliable now, instead of being a bit of a chance/rare thing from the original. Anything on over watch WILL shoot at a moving target in sight.

    The base management/economy side is simplified a bit. You no longer hire scientists/engineers, but receive them as rewards for certain missions or on a monthly basis with your funding if certain requirements are met. The satellites are way better than having to build new radar bases all over the planet, just make sure you station interceptors in those countries too, or you can kiss that satellite goodbye.

    The missions have a lot more variety than the original too. In the original you had UFO missions (landed or crashed), terror missions, and base missions (Assault and Defense). In this new game, you get all the original missions, along with some others. Escort, extraction, and bomb disposal are what I've come across so far. It adds more variety to the game. If you're a fan of the original, you have to check this out. It's pretty neat. Yes, it's a little different. There are a few things I miss, and other very welcome changes. Overall, it stays true to the original and is a great experience.
  33. Dec 12, 2012
    Almost as good as the original. Visually it's stunning, but the game does feel a little restrained. The smaller maps & 6 man limit on a team did make it feel a little confined. The almost lack of UFO combat was a little disappointing, but not a big loss. Overall: For a modern day remake, I don't think I could have hoped for a better game. To whoever thought of Ironman mode =You're one sadistic bastard. Thank you. Expand
  34. Dec 26, 2012
    I love strategy games, I may not be the best at them, but love em, and find XCOM: enemy unknown to be pretty awesome. Not using the tile based system works well and made me feel different from other strategy games. I wanted there would be a greater range of weapons and armour though.
  35. Dec 27, 2012
    A polished and challenging strategy game. The locations can get repetitive, every one looks the same despite being in different parts of the globe, and the weapons could've used a little more variety. While the missions become slightly repetitive they manage to be challenging. The game is highly addictive and has a great fun factor. Easily one of the best games this year.
  36. Oct 19, 2012
    I played the original X-Com and its sequel Terror From the Deep back in the 90's when they came out and they remain a couple of my favorite games of all time. As recently as a year ago I broke them out again for another go at it, as I have done periodically over the years. This new take on the franchise is long awaited and welcome. There are a few things from the old games I miss, but to nick pick would be a bit prissy considering all the cool aspects of Enemy Unknown. The old ones from the 90's had a bit more options and depth, but considering the constant bombardment of media these days, I don't mind the streamlining and watering down of some of the micromanagement. Back then I didn't mind sinking 3-4 hours on one mission because there was no internet and not as much to do. These days the toughest and lengthiest missions in Enemy Unknown topping out around an hour or so are just fine by me, and even though I dont consider graphics near as important as gameplay and fun, the nice skittering aliens and blodd bursts and explosions are pretty cool considering how dated the 90's stuff is now. All in all, If you are a true turn based strategy fan, this one will be your new crack just as Masters of Magic, Master of Orion, original X-Com and a handful of the other greats have done so well in the past. For those new to the genre, welcome to a nice change of pace to the tired run & shoot someone & get shot & rince & repeat that everyone else is doing these days. Cheers to the best turn based console game of all time. Finally good strategy on my couch, thanks Firaxis! :) Expand
  37. Oct 14, 2012
    I bought this game on a whim 3 hours before launch from steam (which included Civ 5 as a pre-order bonus!) since release I simply haven't stopped playing it! Games like Dishonored (released the same day) sit neglected on my desk. This game has grabbed my attention and I don't think it'll let go for a long while!
  38. Oct 21, 2012
    Plenty of people thought XCOM: Enemy Unknown would be a dumbed down version of the original game. Well, turns out they made it even deeper than the original, especially in the tactical section. Soldiers now have perks, can take cover and flank the opposition, opening up a wide range of tactical options to outsmart your opponent!

    This game is addictive as Hell and should be outlawed just
    like narcotics! It's a 9/10 from here, but misses out on perfection by not having randomly generated map layouts. Fortunately the game has a big map pool to draw from. Expand
  39. Feb 16, 2014
    This is a game that made me feel like strategy type gameplay might be for me. I am not familiar with the old X-Com or Enemy Unknown titles, but this game provided a fresh experience that really stood out among the usual grey and brown shooter games I've seen lately.

    The gameplay felt like it had a lot of depth and the expanding skill tree for weapons and equipment upgrades made me
    really think how I was playing, and take more risky but rewarding strategy in the field. The story was interesting, and over all the game was definitely a title I'd recommend to someone who enjoys things like chess, or strategy type games of any kind.

    That isn't to say the game doesn't have things to criticize. The title is very replayable, but in the sense that if you screw up royal in the field once or twice, you'll get to start all over once it becomes apparent that you have zero chance of making a recovery. The games difficulty gave me a very real sense of the stakes, but it has to be noted that if you make a large enough of a misstep in a mission, you might end up in a situation where you can not recover. And your decisions in what you build or how you set up your base can also affect your chances at playing the game through to completion in a drastic manner. If you don't research or discover the right weapons tech or equipment, the game will not slow down to accommodate you. This isn't a bad thing exactly, but do not expect the game to hold your hand while you play.

    If you've the stomach for a more serious strategy game that is unapologetically consistent with it's difficulty curve, and have the skill or patience to overcome it, then it's easily a recommend.
  40. Oct 24, 2012
    I needed this to come out! Taking financial simulation, turned based strategy, and life and death decision making is nothing short of genius. I am a huge fan of Valkeria Chronicles on the PS3, so this game is pretty much my cup of joe. Sure the graphics could be better, the loadouts are generic, and the first mission is boring as can be; but who cares if it plays well when all is said and done... Me. I will be putting a lot of hours into this game, it is looking to be the GAME OF THE MONTH unless something comes out that is better. We will find out soon when we record. Hear my full review on the show, Expand
  41. Feb 22, 2013
    I am not sure if my old review will go away by submitting this one (please forgive my ignorance). I am writing a new review to reconsider my score of eight in favor of a nine. This game deserves it, plain and simple. If you enjoy strategy games, and you play primarily on the Xbox (as I do), then XCOM is definitely a game you should buy (buy a new copy the developers deserve the money and recognition for their game). Expand
  42. Jan 12, 2013
    This game takes turn based tactics and perfects them. As a fan of Fire Emblem, I can honestly say this game ranks on par with them, or even surpasses them. If you're a fan of tactics, you don't have a lot of recent of options with recent games, but this is a sure buy.
  43. Jan 4, 2013
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a fantastic twist off of the old UFO defense. Almost every change made for the new game was for the better: graphics, less units to control, more customization etc... but yes, nobody is perfect and there are some flaws. Maps repeat once you play the game all the way through and you can no longer create multiple bases which lowers the replay value. But none of this has effected me as I absolutely love this game and can look past a few minor blemishes as I am sure is necessary to accept anything in life as 10/10. Except maybe Mila Kunis Expand
  44. Oct 23, 2012
    YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes Sweetness on a disc.
  45. Oct 12, 2012
    I loved the original back in the mid 90's. I was completely addicted to that game and to see it remade I am so so happy. Its a great game to boot Fireaxis makes such excellent strategy titles. There was no better candidate to remake XCom.
  46. Oct 29, 2012
    I loved and grew up with the original XCOM games and as a consequence I was skeptical of a modern remake. This new XCOM game has all the strategic appeal of a turn based game but unlike many before it makes you actually feel a lot more in control of the individual characters. Rather than waiting endlessly for the computer to finish the time between turns is minimal. Intelligent cover adds another great strategic element to the game and the playing field environments are detailed and varied. One of my favorite aspects are the highly rendered cut scene videos, unlike many video snippets that sit within a game these don't feel intrusive and are complementary rather than tiresome and annoying. These dynamically built cut scenes give another level of engagement and cause this game to really stand out in the field of turn based games! Great work 2K Games! Expand
  47. Feb 16, 2013
    Like PuzzleQuest, there is a little bit of a learning curve. But wow! Even though there are some things they didn't include versus the older XCOM version, the strategy and new ideas will keep you well occupied. I was addicted to this game for 10 days straight and I'm still not finished. There are some similar looking maps but they vary enough to come up with a different strategy each go around. You do need to play the game a couple of times. The first time after I got half-way through, I didn't realize how important it was to invest in satellites and hence lost the game after all the other countries dropped out. There's a multi-part game strategy here, one which is the overall strategy on how you build your base, the other is each of the games battle strategies where you select your team, move your soldiers, and find a way to kill the bad guys. It gets deep! I didn't read the strategy guide on how to prioritize satellite building and only made it half-way through my first game. I'm planning on starting over again because there were a few other things I would've liked to done better. There is a lot to this game and for me and the amount of time I've been entertained by it justifies the hefty $60 price tag. Even though I wish it were less i still feel like I've gotten my money's worth out of it. Expand
  48. Dec 26, 2012
    XCOM is one of the best games I have played this year offering real strategy and difficulty to complete. Firaxis has done a great job of bringing this game back to life from it's originals. There are few glitches and bugs with the camera angles. Overall a very rewarding experience offering real challenges to complete on its various difficulties. So much strategy is required when making decisions on where to attack, research, buildings, equipments, how to upgrade soldiers, and how to spend funding efficiently. I do however wish that the total game time lasted for longer possibly drawing the campaign out for the years duration instead of the few months and possibly attacking an alien home-world. While also making more maps or having a greater randomness to each of the levels, and encounters, which I feel could have more differences. I cannot wait for a sequel from Firaxis, I am very pleased to play this game. Expand
  49. Feb 15, 2013
    I loved the X-COM series back in the '90s when I was a kid and I was kinda scared when Firaxis announced a reboot, but, after playing the game, I can only say they did an awesome job. This game is great and, even if it misses some of the features the old ones had, it manages to bring back the same feelings.
    It's incredibly fun and thrilling, even if it's turn based, and it allows you to
    try different strategies and tricks (one of my best moments was when, in one of the first maps, i used a granade to destroy a wall so that my sniper could kill enemies from outside the building). At higher difficulty levels, the game gets really hard and the A.I. will often punish you even for small mistakes, making it even more deep strategy-wise. The management system while in the base is also very well designed: you are forced to make choices on building structures, items and improvements, while trying to keep every nation in the council and upgrading your interceptors/satellite coverage/soldiers arsenal. I liked the fact that Firaxis did not choose the way of a boring micro-management system, while still providing a challenge even outside of combat: your choices in the base *will* affect how you perform on the battlefield and that is awesome.
    Since they implemented the "Second Wave" options, its longevity has grown incredibly: now you can play with different rules or starting conditions, making every "new game" a really new experience. Multiplayer is not perfect, but it's fun and adds to the many options you have.
    I was about to give this game a round 10, but I won't, since it can improve here and there. Random maps would be a nice addition, if not a must for a game like this (in longest campaigns you may find yourself in the same map twice). Also, some minor bugs that could be fixed. Anyway, don't skip this game. Actually it's about 50 bucks on Amazon: worth every cent.
  50. Feb 18, 2013
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a very good game. While a few things are missing, (I'm looking at you, XCOM base defence) the game is very, very good. The strategy in this game is deep, and the emotion factor is high. I once found a portion of my squad pinned down, fighting relentlessly against wave after wave of Mutons, Sectoids, and Thin Men until reinforcements arrived. And yes, while there is an apparent lack of story, you are able to forge your own through the courage and valor of your soldiers, versus the sheer numbers and ferocity of the bloodthirsty aliens in the wartorn continents of Earth. I just wish that there was an explanation as to why the aliens came here in the first place. Progression in this game is awesome, With you upgrading your arsenal from bullets and human kevlar, to Plasma guns, robots, jetpacks and alien battle armor. It is satisfying to destroy the hordes of aliens and make a dent in the alien invasion, but it is a sad day when the hordes kill one of your men, or worse, claim him/her as one of their own. I was morally conflicted when they got mind-melded my own soldier and I was forced to pull the trigger. I cannot say it enough: XCOM is awesome! only a few things are holding this back from my perfect score, but I definately reccomend this game to anyone looking for a good turn based strategy game like me. Expand
  51. Sep 7, 2013
    A fantastic game, it's certainly an experience to play. Playing on Ironman mode really enhances the atmosphere of the title, as when you lose a soldier you really lose a soldier, no going back. Combat is actually dangerous, which makes the whole game tense as you don't want to lose your most trusted sniper to a surprise attack. There is a very respectable memorial should you lose your top guy.
    I am deducting a point however because of a few small bugs.
  52. Apr 3, 2013
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown is a great game. For some players it will not be enjoyable due to the sheer difficulty of the game, But that is what makes XCOM so good. IT challenges you to make a decision that could be your downfall later in the game. Move this soldier here to flank the enemy or give the new armor to this soldier. The limited budget at the end of every month gives you some tough choices to make. The amount of player choice in the game is amazing, It beats many choice driven games in XCOM's ow special way. There are no alternate endings, There are two ways to finish the game. Fight and stop the alien invasion to save Humanity, Or have Humanity be enslaved and lose the game. It is the decisions that you make that decides if XCOM wins or loses. Expand
  53. Jun 30, 2013
    I will preface this by saying I have never played any Xcom games before this one. That being said, this game is great and has a high replay factor. I think the people giving it poor ratings are generally mad that they changed a lot from the original, sort of like what happened when Fallout 3 was released. The graphics are good enough for a strategy game and it is frustrating enough to make you mad but not enough to make you quit or throw your controller through your television. It is fun and interesting to upgrade and research technology and you must use your resources wisely. I highly recommend it and now that it's price is down to about $30, sometimes cheaper, it is worth every penny. Expand
  54. Jul 4, 2013
    XCOM: Enemy Unknown delivers a thoroughly satisfying, turn-based strategy game experience, leaving few things to complain about. The act of engaging a downed UFO or the means of which you battle enemies may be very cleverly crafted and enjoyable, but the game mostly shines in pre-battle planning and all the essential counter-alien chores you perform back at your base. Witness your soldiers and XCOM HQ evolve or begin to fail, based off the many crucial decisions you make between battles as the head of operations. To watch the XCOM project as a whole unfold successfully as a result of your many efforts as a commander is an extremely satisfying and exciting feeling that few games are able to offer.
    The only thing preventing me from giving this game a score of ten is the fact that it has a noticeable amount of game bugs, some of which can be game breaking. Through the course of the game, you may notice visually unpleasant bugs(such as soldiers wielding the incorrect weapon when firing, or the game camera clipping through level geometry), unending enemy turns(albeit rarely), teleporting enemies(not as a game feature, but as an extremely unfair bug which remains unpatched), and a few other minor bugs. For the most part, these bugs are negligible, but can sometimes interfere with the game's experience. Overall though, XCOM: Enemy Unknown is an extremely well made game, that people who aren't even fans of strategy games shouldn't pass up.
  55. Jul 21, 2013
    Dumbed down from the original but pretty good still. I wonder why these days you always got to have classes in games. Even in the ones that try to be "realistic" like XCOM. In real life soldiers can't take a bullet in the gut regardless of their rank or experience. They can also carry more than one grenade. They can also choose to use what ever weapons they like. Overall a very nice remake of an old classic with some very annoying features. Expand
  56. Jul 30, 2013
    I remember playing the REAL X-COM instead of that crap fps version and i loved the strategy. it was good. Then the new X-COM was released at E-3 and i was just hoping that they would go back to the original and BAM! Instant masterpiece.
  57. Aug 23, 2013
    I felt obligated to sing up to this website just to tell every strategy games lovers: Buy this stuff.
    Most awesome strategy game i'v play'd in my hole life!
    Challenging, fun to play, freaking awesome learning curve!
    I bet that after 5 hours playing this stuff you'll feel like a Military Anti-Alien Badass commander!
  58. Aug 23, 2013
    XCOM Enemy Unknown is refreshing change of pace in gaming; the market filled with copy, ideas, lazy stories, easy difficulties and lack of replay ability. XCOM has intelligent, play driven combat and contains a campaign that lasts really as long as you want. Though the multiplayer is slightly dull and there are some animation glitches; the well made cinematic scenes, a motivating plot, evolving gameplay and rewarding, yet challenging difficulty makes XCOM Enemy Unknown a most own. Expand
  59. Sep 17, 2013
    Too dumbed down for a PC title, but ok for the noobs who play games on consoles. If look like a post-pubescent weed-smoker and can't tell the difference between a PC and a fridge this console-oriented remake is for you.

Universal acclaim - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. Mar 6, 2013
    By virtue of how it stokes more parts of my brain than any game of the past decade, I’m inclined to consider XCOM: Enemy Unknown one of the most important titles of this generation. This game will test your disaster-management skills, levy you with suffocatingly difficult choices on how to spend your resources and cause you to grow so fond of your chess pieces that each skirmish takes on the flavour of a Whedonesque drama.
  2. 90
    It's like The Sims, but with much shorter life expectancies. [Issue#91, p.66]
  3. Nov 12, 2012
    It's [a] tough and punishing game, but in the best way possible. Every loss compels you onward in the war and the story. Where most games are frustratingly punishing, XCOM delivers a masterclass in challenge and escalation.