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Monday, June 6, 2011

X-Com Apocalypse

X-Com Apocalypse is the third game in the series and the last to follow the same basic game design elements of the original. It was released in 1997 for the PC which was actually a bad time for gaming. The market was being flooded with garbage games and this only served to cripple any success of any actual good games. Also at this time Microprose, the producer and distributor, was having financial difficulties which led to this game being released prematurely and incomplete. Despite being incomplete it is still a very enjoyable game that can be played over and over perhaps without even realizing the fact.

There are a lot of differences, the first of course being the large graphical update! To anyone born into the call of duty age of gaming anything old looks the same and is largely unappealing but most people should easily notice how much better this game looks. Another major change is that you will not be defending the entire planet but instead the only remaining city and last bastion of human civilization on earth Mega Primus!
And the air combat element had a massive overhaul as well, instead of being a one on one duel with a limited view of the fight you now see and control all of your craft in the cityscape and can really gang up on those alien buggers.
The same basic game design is there tho, you shoot down alien craft, research and improve your technology and then you search out and destroy the true alien threat. Instead of pleasing nations to fund your war effort you now have to appease companies and political parties which you can bribe to improve relations. They all own buildings in the city which the aliens or other organizations can raid or even you if you want to play it that way. There are even gangs and mutants and robots oh my! It is not uncommon to see a gang attack a police building with their vehicles or raid it with troops. There is even an alien sympathizer group called the Cult of Sirius which will hate you no matter what. If you find yourself needing funds or approval rating it is best to attack them because it will not step on anyone else toes and it will give you brownie points on your weekly review.
Improved technology.
Ground combat against the Cult of Sirius.
One of the gangs.
Brownie points.
Weekly review.
You start out with a base, some basic buildings and personal/vehicles and some funds to spend as you please. As the game progresses you will need to expand your facilities recruit more scientists/engineers and eventually build at least one more base. Scientists and engineers have a set skill level and it is best to fire less skilled ones as more skilled ones become available. Soldiers however advance in skill as they are used in combat or train in the two available training facilities(one for physical, one for mental). The androids however are stuck with the skill they start with which is rather high at game start and they are immune to mind control. However if you regularly use troops and keep them healthy and training then anyone can become a glorified hero on the field of battle. If injured your troops will need to spend time in the infirmary and cannot train during this time.
The base screen.
An android in the troop equipment screen.
The first alien craft you encounter will be unmanned and easily shot down but as the game progresses they will become larger, more heavily armed/armored and carry much larger troop compliments. Eventually they will be flying fortresses that will take an entire fleet to bring down capable of destroying smaller craft with a single shot. You could always ignore them but this means more ground missions or risking aliens taking control of organizations. Any damage to the city will have a negative impact on relations and you will end up having to pay bribes or everyone will hate you but money is relatively easy to make.
First alien craft.
The mothership!
Weekly score which affects funding.
All in all it's a pretty solid game and worth checking out if you have a few spare bucks and time on your hands as it is only $5 on STEAM. One last thing to note is you can play the ground missions in real time or turn based for this title.


  1. Hmm... can't wait for you to expand on this it looks really cool from what I can see in the video.

  2. Looking forward to more from you on this. Nice.

  3. wow, really in depth review, I'm liking it. Never played this one though.

  4. Microprose published so many good games back in the day. It's a shame they're not around anymore. It used to be that the name was synonymous with quality.

  5. Will check it out on Steam. Maybe they'll do a summer sale soon

  6. i like all the details you provided for this!

  7. Aaaah, x-com, probably my favourite game of the 90s. :)

  8. hmz i havent played this one

  9. Man I remember these games from my youth.
    The most low-paced action strategy game I've ever played, and I loved it lol.

  10. This looks pretty cool! Nice blog :)

  11. You should review fallout 1, And good game too :D