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Author Topic: The obligatory X-Com post  (Read 1415 times)
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motodd
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« on: October 11, 2004, 04:25:07 AM »

I miss the X-Com posts at GG already so I am going to start one, it's even console related. My actual first experience with the game was the PSX version in 1996. I was at a Babbages looking for a game for my newly purchased playstation when I saw the box on the wall and remembered a friend's older brother telling me about the game. Decided to get it and never regretted it. My roommates and I spent many, many, many hours playing this game and then retelling our missions to each other. I mention many hours because that game probably had the worst loading times of any PSX game. Eventually I picked up a proper PC version of the game and traded in the PSX copy. Flash forward to this summer, I purchased a PSone with the lcd screen and was talking to one of the after mentioned roommates about how cool it would be to sit on my back deck and play X-Com on a lazy summer day. A couple weeks later he shows up at my workplace with a present biggrin
I had a lot of lazy days this summer Cool
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CSL
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« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2004, 04:32:02 AM »

X-COM is the best game of all time, bar none. My GG X-COM AARs might have proved how much everyone loves it.

There is a reason why it won the first Best Game of All Time Tournament that Appaz did.
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Dalai
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2004, 12:04:59 AM »

How does it play on the PSX?  Do you have to use the d-pad/analogue to control the mouse cursor or did they rework the interface a bunch?
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Eel Snave
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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2004, 01:05:00 AM »

BOOOOOO!   HISSSSS! biggrin

I figured I'd already start ripping on X-Com.  Old habits die hard. smile

(sigh)
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Daehawk
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2004, 01:29:12 AM »

I rate X-Com a 5..it was ok but nothing special and I never did finish it. Id like to see it remade with something like the Silent Storm engine...but with faster AI turns!
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motodd
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« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2004, 03:21:54 AM »

Quote from: "Dalai"
How does it play on the PSX?  Do you have to use the d-pad/analogue to control the mouse cursor or did they rework the interface a bunch?


There are two methods of control using the PSX controller. One is a scrolling cursor and the other is kind of like a hot button scheme or something, I never used it. There is no analog control just the D-pad. You could also use the mouse that was made for the playstion. If you have played it on the PC it will be incredibly frustrating to play on the PSX.
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Blackjack
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« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2010, 08:29:13 PM »

I feel sorry for the Gollops some times. Must be hard to hit a home run so early in your career and then chase it the rest of your lives...

The Story of X-Com (interview with Julian Gollop)
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2010-11-28-the-story-of-x-com-interview
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So we made the demo, and it had a basic working tactical combat system, but with 3D isometric graphics so it looked more impressive. We had a shortlist of three publishers, one of which was Microprose. We were particularly keen on them, because they published Civilization, of course. We thought they were the best company for strategy games because of Sid Meier, and we wanted to do games for PC, because we saw it as the future of gaming.

We took the demo to Microprose in the UK, and they liked what they saw, but they said that they wanted something bigger. It wasn't a Microprose game; it needed to be something deep. There was a guy there called Pete Moreland, who suggested the theme of UFOs, and I thought this was a very good idea. So I went away and we came up with the whole strategic aspect of the game, with randomly-generated tactical missions, the Geoscape, the economics. In a couple of weeks I went back to them and said, "How about this?" and they thought it was great! So we started on X-Com, which was what Laser Squad II had become.
Maybe that's why the sequels and wannabes don't tend to measure up. They're just trying to emulate a famous game rather than doing something else that morphed almost organically into X-Com.

In the "hindsight is 20-20 department" (though I've run into gamers who vehemently defend X-Com: Apocalypse, the Gollops themselves aren't among them), talking about their decision to agree to let MicroProse crank out X-COM: From the Deep quickly while they spent 2 years on Apocalypse:
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We earned lots of cash from X-Com, so we hired more staff at Mythos. But the deal that Microprose wanted was that they did the Apocalypse graphics. It was a disastrous relationship from the start. They had some very fancy, rather expensive ideas: they hired some relatively famous artist who made physical models of the aliens, which were then scanned into their software. It didn't work very well. The Microprose artists couldn't quite understand how isometric graphics worked. It was enormously difficult, and I think overall the artwork was done pretty poorly on that game.

It was a disaster area. Apocalypse was quite a sophisticated and ambitious game, but it was a big mistake from our point of view. In retrospect, we should have originally agreed to do a sequel in six months, and spent a year doing it, like they did! It would've been a lot better.
He also touches a bit on the famous (infamous?), canceled Dreamland Chronicles: Freedom Ridge. Although being wistful about that is probably like being wistful about Simtex's canceled Guardians: Agents of Justice, though there are folks who claim to have tried a late G:AoJ build and found it atrocious. Still, things that never were tend to always have that glare of "could have been" nostalgia about 'em.

And a very interesting project for the upcoming 3DS:
Quote
Julian now develops for Ubisoft. His current project is Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars, a squad-level turn-based tactical game, and launch-title for the Nintendo 3DS.
===========
If you go to Nintendo's official 3DS site, and click the "Other Games" tab at the bottom, the Ghost Recon game is there with some preliminary screenshots:
http://e3.nintendo.com/3ds/
(from August, maybe already mentioned in the console section but I can't keep track  icon_smile)
« Last Edit: November 29, 2010, 08:48:03 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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Blackadar
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« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2010, 08:58:57 PM »

I got the game the first week it was released (I think).  Looked interesting and I love turn-based small-squad tactics, so it was a natural fit.  One of the best gaming purchases of my life...only God knows how many hours I spent killing sectoids. 
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Turtle
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« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2010, 09:36:52 PM »

Chalk me up as someone who certain gameplay elements of Apocalypse. Sounds like I liked most of the non-art related aspects of Apoc, especially the real-time combat gameplay. I need to go back and replay the real-time mode again to see if it was just rose-tinted glasses, but I still remember it being one of the best implementations of real-time tactical gameplay out there. I especially loved how my own troops would slide in and out of cover to attack enemies.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2010, 09:39:12 PM by Turtle » Logged
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