An interesting mix of RTS, turn-based and straight strategic gameplay and varied mission designs. However, the turn-based/RTS system may seem a bit convoluted for some gamers who expect a more simplistic action-oriented approach to squad-based strategy.
It may be a little tough for folks new to the genre as the tutorial is a little sketchy but the manual does offer quite a bit of help. If you're looking for a good squad based, tactical strategy game UFO: Aftermath is definitely worthplaying.
I've read the good and the bad about it, and here is why i liked this game quite a lot.
UFO Aftermath has this unique atmosphere of impending doom and, strangely, alienation - not only did i feel hopeless (especially when the alien biomass starts to spread throughout the planet), but all throughout the campaign i felt like i was alone on the planet, abandoned, forgotten, forsaken. Might seem funny, but this mood was precisely what i loved about the game, and none of the sequels were able to capture it so well.
Other than that - the cities are very well done - European style. Love it. Although some complain about tactical aspect of the combat - i enjoyed it for its smoothness. Perhaps i enjoyed it more because i was not expecting a sequel to X-COM, but evaluated the game on its own.
It's another XCOM remake, with a unique mechanics mixing turn-based and real-time combat which turns out to not work really well. Also, bad design of maps and especially the maze-like alien base layouts spoil it.
Unlike in other turn-based games, there is no "turns" here. Instead, you give queues of orders to soldiers, and until a queue is complete or an enemy is seen, the game proceeds in real time, and then pauses until you give a new order to a soldier. In practice, this means that after you see an enemy alien (and it sees your soldier), both you and the alien start firing their weapon at each other non-stop. And since most aliens are bigger, have more hitpoints and do more damage than your soldiers, you can't defeat them in close combat, no matter from what side you approach them. The only tactics which works best is to make all soldiers snipers, and equip sniper rifles, to shoot enemies from afar while they run towards you to get into their firing range. Also, the auto-pause becomes annoying while you run around seeking for enemies. The real-time/turn-based blend works much better in Jagged Alliance 2 (the game runs in turn-based mode only when you are in combat, and in real-time while out of combat).
They seem to have removed much of the delicate strategic balancing which made the original so much more than a squad-based tactical game, and many of the tactical elements which made it stand head and shoulders above resource-management games.
Sadly, the promising squad-based interface is put to incredibly uninspiring use. Despite the impressive scope, this lacklustre playing experience offers little incentive to persevere and explore the strategic depth on offer. [Dec 2003, p.126]
UFO After series took it upon it's shoulders to continue the legacy of XCOM Ufo Defense.
As the commander of Earth's Remaining forces you fight to take earth back from the Aliens known as the Reticulans. Aftermath has a quasi-real time battle mechanic with an active pause and the ability to queue up multiple orders. On the global map you can do research, manage your troops, with a pretty well fleshed out leveling system and intercept UFOs.
It's definately not as good as XCOM or it's 2011 re-imagining but it's an interesting position to try out. Altar Games went on to create two more installments of the game and good on them, since Aftershock and Afterlight were noticeably superior to this one. Unfortunately mechanics here are clunky, the game gets unfairly difficult WAY too fast and longer sittings can turn into boring chores. With all that in mind Aftermath is a decent albeit flawed first attempt at an XCOM successor. It's definately worth a playthrough as the music, the atmosphere and the overall feeling of the game give it more of an X-Files vibe.
Taking place in the far distance future of um 2004 immediately after aliens have wiped out the
overwhelming majority of life on earth, UFO Aftermath was supposed to be a mix of strategy via a global
view central command with real time tactical missions and a somewhat crpg element in regard to control of tactical teams. In addition to this if you had played this title you would have been required to do research to advance your cause against the aliens. A seemingly interesting balance of game elements right? Wrong.
So what went wrong? The game was also to advance via the tactical missions. However, poor game balance blamed partly on an impossible learning curve left this aspect of the title unappealing. Except, perhaps, to those with nothing else to do, at all. What was leftover for those who did not free themselves from UFO Aftermath after a mission or so was a tedious and repetitive rut in an unoriginal game with unappealing graphics, amateurish voice acting and no sense of any real point to it.
In addition, a frustrating optional hybrid system could auto-pause the game allowing the player to plan their next ''move'' before unpausing the game. Perhaps as an attempt to appease or appeal to the legions of fans of the venerable turn-based X-Com, some of whom were lead to believe that this clunker was some sort of ''spiritual'' successor to the X-Com series. A retro isometric style presentation would have been a better tribute to X-Com instead of the low grade 3D graphics that look so tediously similar to dozens of other Jim Crack RTS games. However, not even that would have saved this pot boiler from sub-mediocrity. Furthermore the old 1024x768 resolution leaves wide screens half empty. So please, do yourself a favor today choose the easy option and just avoid it. RATING 12%
SummaryUFO: Aftermath is a 3D isometric, tactical strategy game a rich and compelling sci fi story. Combining global strategy with small squad tactical combat, the challenge offered is to fight against an alien invasion. Featuring run time generated tactical missions with innovative simultaneous combat action; the genre is also enhanced with st...