News: X-COM 2 announced

News: X-COM 2 announced

Well would you look at that. We all suspected that Firaxis would be working on a Sequel to the superlative X-Com: Enemy Unknown, so I guess the announcement of the sequel shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. Needless to say, I’m giddy with excitement.

Jump to the cut for more you lucky lucky people!

Well first thing’s first, here’ the trailer:

That looks pretty good does it not. I mean we’ll gloss over the hoods for a moment, but still, shiny. I’ll be doing a full trailer break-down in a later post, but the shifting of the game from defender to aggressor is an interesting idea and I get the sense that each mission may not start as open combat. I may be reading too much into this, but I got the feeling that there will be more civilian’s and a way to be ‘undercover’- or at least not openly hostile to all enemies from the off.

Along with the announcement trailer, we have the release date: November 2015. No year-long trickle of images and promotional material. A swift 6 months and we can be bemoaning the loss of our a beloved squad member (called Nick) all over again.

The press release adds some more detail:

XCOM 2 transports players 20 years into the future, where humanity lost the war against the alien threat that has established a new world order. The secret paramilitary organization known as XCOM is largely forgotten, and must strike back to reclaim control of Earth and free mankind from the aliens’ rule. XCOM 2 is currently scheduled for release in November 2015. The game will also be coming to Mac and Linux via Feral Interactive.

In XCOM 2, the roles have been reversed, and XCOM is now the invading force. They are hampered by limited resources and must constantly evade the alien threat in their new mobile headquarters. Players must use a combination of firepower and stealth-like tactics to help XCOM recruit soldiers and build a resistance network, while attempting to expose the evil alien agenda and save humanity. XCOM 2 will introduce gameplay features such as procedurally-generated levels, which will make each experience unique to the player, as well as offer a much deeper level of modding support. Additionally, XCOM 2 will offer a variety of new content including five updated soldier classes, increased soldier customization, more alien and enemy types, evolved tactical combat and more.

“Firaxis proved they could reimagine a beloved franchise with XCOM: Enemy Unknown, a Game of the Year award-winning title,” said Christoph Hartmann, president of 2K. “With XCOM 2, the team is breathing new life into the series by adding an epic narrative and challenging players to overcome near impossible odds.”

“The feedback from the passionate XCOM community played an important role in the development of XCOM 2, driving us to push the visual, gameplay and replayability boundaries of what a strategy game can be,” said Jake Solomon, creative director of XCOM 2 at Firaxis Games. “We’re thrilled to implement long-time fan requested features such as procedural levels and modding support, as well as adding more of what makes XCOM great like new aliens, enemies and soldier classes.”

Procedurally generated. Nice.

While the video is nice, and fairly evocative, it doesn’t show us much in the way of game-play. Luckily though, I have some screens that give us a bit more information.

What do you mean there's bird poo on my helmet?
What do you mean there’s bird poo on my helmet?

I’m guessing that this will be the basic enemy grunt. Given the shift in tone and the fact you’re now the aggressor and that Earth ‘lost’, I assume that these are police or military controlled by the aliens.

I used to be a soldier too, until i took an arrow to... wait...
I used to be a soldier too, until i took an arrow to… wait…

This looks in game. Graphics look updated (though still functional) and it appears that knee-high walls still abound. Though, instead of fighting in ruins and crash sites, you could be fighting in plaza’s and streets.

Eny, meeny, miny, mo...
Eny, meeny, miny, mo…

Sword. SWORD. S.W.O.R.D. Also those enemies appear to be in conversation- on patrol perhaps? Could stealth kills be an option here?

Anyone seen my Toupee?
Anyone seen my Toupee?

New Bad. Looks like a grown-up Sectoid, that or the inevitable human/alien hybrid. I say inevitable because SCIENCE FICTION.

That’s your lot. Expect a trailer break-down soon….

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