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XCOM: Enemy Within – A New Enemy Was Revealed Called…

By on October 9th, 2013 2:01 pm

… the Exalt. A rogue Human organization with a separate agenda, as in the new trailer released today by 2K Games, entitled “Security Breach”. But, hold your horses. It may not be exactly what we think it is. You know, an XCOM base defense type of mission against an invading threat? The security breach footage seen in the trailer may be about Exalt infiltrators aiming at disrupting XCOM operations, doing sabotage, compromising research, steeling funds. Or at least that’s what I’ve been able to understand from reading the game’s forums today.

So, on top of the new maps, the mechs, the genetically modified soldiers, the new weapons and the new alien enemies (Seeker and Mechtoid), there’s now a second faction to deal with in XCOM:EU’s expansion. A Human rival faction. We hope to have more for you on this on the next few days.

The XCOM: Enemy Within expansion pack is slated to release on 12th of November 2013 in the US (15th Nov worldwide) for the PC, Mac, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. For more information, including major new features, check out our announcement post or the XCOM official website.

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  1. David Carron says:

    Base Invasion? Hells to the YES!

    I think X-Com just mind controlled Santa…

  2. Chris says:

    Yep. Definitely getting this.

  3. Boris says:

    XCOM EU is so woefully terrible that if steam had not refunded me I’d still have a raw and chapped backside.

    The original and TFTD are still leagues above this *cough* strategy *cough* game.

    Roll on Xenonauts.

  4. David Carron says:

    “Roll on Xenonauts.”

    It’s tough to compare with something that isn’t out yet…

    Maybe it will come out before the end of the year and we shall see.

    • Boris says:

      I pre-ordered Xenonauts for $20 and have been playing/beta-testing for a while now.

      Even with bugs (almost all gone now) its superb, and the continual polishing/refinement and bug-fixing mean I’ve logged about 100 hours in it, despite knowing the next patch will most likely break my saves and I need to restart.

      Passionate community and frequent engagement by devs… can actually choose your base location, build it and defend it… can actually pick up items and exchange them between team members… actually has TU’s and credits the player with having the intelligence to be able to calculate what they can do with it… non-linear random progression on the geoscape… tactical air battles that are not easy… but more importantly is actually fun and engaging just like the original series.

      Compare that price and hours logged on a beta against XCOM EU and I know what I’d choose if I had to do it all again.

  5. ray says:

    Finally the expansion is getting some meat on it – the high DLC expansion price is starting to look like it may be worth it !

  6. Cícero says:

    Did you notice his voice when he says “Hello, Commander.”? First time I noticed any difference in the monotone the Council Spokeperson uses.

    Its just me, or is his voice seething with anger?

  7. zigzag says:

    Well, might as well write off November.

  8. SQW says:

    The single biggest weakness in XCOM was its linearity (and how every rescue/escort mission amounts to absolutely nothing story wise because of the said linearity). Adding extra content is only a short-term fix if you still end up doing the same missions in the same order on the same map on your 2nd play through.

    I’m far more interested in knowing if and how the expansion intend introduce a more random campaign progression. The exalts might finally spice up the utterly generic and predictable vanilla campaign.

    • Adam Solo says:

      I agree that the linearity is XCOM:EU’s biggest weakness. I too would like the expansion to add more randomness to the missions you get, especially in the beginning.

      I suspect that the introduction of the Exalt, and the need to scan for Exalt cells and decide when to infiltrate and attack the Exalt stronghold head-on will improve the diversity and give you more control of things, so that you can create your own story. Let’s see.

    • Gunlord says:

      I think you make a good point about EU’s linearity, though to be fair, the original XCOM, as it was, had its repetitive moments too. In most of my campaigns in the original game, the last few months of the undermanned, underfunded, white-knuckle last-ditch defense of Earth were spent farming Floater supply bases before mind-controlling every last alien on Cydonia and having them blow each other up, haha.

      • Mark says:

        At least it sounds like it was fun…..

      • Adam Solo says:

        “to be fair, the original XCOM, as it was, had its repetitive moments too”

        It did. But the thing there is that more stuff was going on in the Geoscape. There were more decisions to make (more strategy). And, as far as I can remember, events never felt the same right from the start.

        Now, it’s always a 8 sectoid squad abduction mission, followed by a a UFO crash with 5 sectoids, then a 12 sectoid squad abduction, then a scripted council mission with Thin Man. And, the first terror mission happens more or less at the same time too. After that, and only that, you start to have more a game that depends on your actions.

        The initial linearity, the scripted feeling (somewhat fixed spawn points and some scripted missions) and the fixed maps were clearly XCOM:EU’s biggest weaknesses in my view.

        But, the thing is, even taking all that into account, this is still a great game and experience. So, I think Jake and co deserve all the praise that they received. And, quite frankly I’m optimistic about Enemy Within. If Firaxis managed to improve XCOM:EU half as much as Gods & Kings and Brave New World improved Civ5 vanilla, then I think we are in for a treat.

  9. Nick West says:

    1. Creep forward
    2. reveal enemy group
    3. kill enemy group
    4. GO TO 1

    Beat game, realize gameplay never changed, become sad, uninstall

    • Happy Corner says:

      You should have tried playing on a higher difficulty. On Classic and above, the enemies don’t wait for you to reveal them.

  10. Elethio says:

    Xcom is a fun game for the first 60 hrs but I’ve got too agree with SQW & Nick West, by the second play-through you notice its all the same.

    After that, theres a couple of good mods that might keep you going for one more game.

    And there’s multiplayer, which could of been great if they’d included some of the missions as different modes, but instead its just deathmatch on a tiny map with added bugs.

    Good game but could of been soo much better.

  11. Dave V says:

    Totally agree with the concensus here, extra content will not break the monotomy of the core gameplay and the linear story. Hopefully this expansion has a fundamental re-work of the basics, but I’m not hopeful.

  12. Mark says:

    I wonder if you can pick stuff off the ground yet or swap equipment between team members. You could do all that in the original X-Com 25 years ago, with NO expansions!

    Xcom-EU was a sad effort and I really hope that Xenonauts doesn’t drop the ball anywhere near as badly.

    • csebal says:

      You surely mean 19 years, right? :) 25 years would put xcom into the late 80s, when it was only released early-mid 90s, March of 1994 to be precise.

      I still think XCOM EU was a decent game on its own merit. It might have been a letdown in some aspects when compared to its predecessor, but apart from the linearity, I had fun with it, which is a lot more than what I can say about the majority of the games released the last few years.

      With that said, I will probably buy the expansion as well. Will probably wait with it until the christmas sale though and bundle it up with the DLCs I have been ignoring so far.

      As for those who do not like the direction they are heading with the new game, there is always Xenonauts, which from what I’ve seen is a pretty close remake of the original, with an updated UI, AI and a few extra features added on top.

      • Adam Solo says:

        Exactly. Xenonauts is remarkably similar to the original XCOM. If it can capture the same feeling and offer the same kind of immersive experience that’s still to be seen. But, the mechanics are very, very similar to the 93 X-COM. So, if you’re let down by the new XCOM, then Xenonauts is definitely something you should check out.

      • Mark says:

        “You surely mean 19 years, right?”

        Yeah, my guesstimation was slightly off :)

        Edit: And yes I’m hoping that Xenonauts manages to redeem modern game designers of the embarrassment of being utterly defeated in every game-play way by such an old game. C’mon modern game designers, you can design deep, interesting, non-linear games too!!

  13. Serge says:

    BTW on tangentially related note – Silent Storm 2/Sentinels are now on Steam (and probably recompiled) Mechanics similar to XCOM and completely destructible environment – walls too (unlike XCOM:EU)
    Graphics don’t feel outdated, but the game little less polished then XCOM

    • Hypnotron says:

      I always thought that Silent Storm was one of those games that could have become huge if it weren’t for:

      1) really lousy marketing. The game’s logo was awful. “S2” made it look like it was a sequel to something you’d never heard of.

      2) a really lousy name. The name “Silent Storm” makes it completely unclear what genre, what time period, what anything this game is about.

      3) one big game design snafu. Panzerkleins really? It was like watching Raiders of the Lost Ark morph into Kingdom of the Crystal Skull all in the same film.

      This game is STILL flat out better than EU on the tactics side of things.

      • Serge says:

        I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s flat out better then EU, but it’s at least on par. There are some balance issues, EU is more dynamic and S2 missions are more slow, but that is more like question of personal preference.

      • bubicus says:

        Starforce was another reason it didn’t sell as well. Silent Storm came out when there was a huge backlash against Starforce and games with Starforce lost sales (and gained piracy). Starforce killed one of my hard drives shortly after installing Silent Storm, and I couldn’t bring myself to play it again until GOG released a DRM-free version (which I happily purchased).

  14. Keith Turner says:

    I watched an interview with Ananda Gupta, the lead designer. I took a few interesting things away from it:

    The difficulty is being tweaked a bit and research will be slowed on higher difficulties.

    The player determines when, where, how, and if the Exault is pursued. If you leave them alone too long on higher difficulties though, they are going to become almost impossible to ignore. The Exault have 4 classes and also have an elite version with more genetic modifications later in the game. They operate similar to player controlled squads. They also have 2 new mission types with around 20 maps to engage them on.

    The Mec suit has an ability called Collateral Damage to destroy cover, which could be interesting.

    The list of new things in this expansion is certainly growing. I’m not sure it’s going to sway anyone who didn’t like XCOM:EU, but it sounds pretty solid for fans willing to take another run through the game.

  15. Kubisan says:

    I thought so that the vanilla EU was kinda, straght-forwarded, short and linear. Thought of more tech to salvage, longer times to develop and bigger scale like okey we found, lets do more research on them then maybe some clues…etc not like eeey we say a new weaponry, lets do some research voilá in 8 days we made a new laser stuff, another days later plasma stuff and when we beat them up its only matter of 1-3 months gametime… i would add a variety of missions like “infiltrate to obtain required tech”, gather intel, build aditional bases, more complicated and twisted storyline etc….

    But i lookd forward to this nevertheless :)

    • SQW says:

      XCOM EU really doesn’t feel very global.

      Small, USA themed tactical maps, lack of option in strategy layer, zero consequences from completing/failing council mission and an ending that cuts out just when the aliens starting to get some media attention…

      It feels like two gangs fighting a turf war in some small US city than a global conflict. Of course, most Americans think the world only consists of America floating on a sea of Mexican migrants. =)

      • Kubisan says:

        Exactly, from what i can imagine when the Aliens come to the Earth some global movements, public Riots and research speeded up to insanity. Global resistance organisations to help you, multiple bases to prevent a preemptive strike from orbit… and maybe and that’s kind of scifi when completely understand their tech then for some time of constructing some advanced ships to guard an orbit, maybe some space missions. But definitely larger battlefields more themes, multiple strategies, option of espionage of the enemy behavious or stike their facilities ships etc. Not only the “US conquers and wins all scenarios” :))

  16. Joe Walton says:

    I wonder if you’ll get the chance to play as the EXALT?

  17. Peter says:

    Ugh all this talk about Xcom makes me wanna play the first (90’s) Xcom and cheat the hell out of it to speed things up :)

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