Like many PC gamers of the early-to-mid 90s, I fell in love with X-Com: UFO Defense (AKA UFO: Enemy Unknown across the pond). However, there are many games since then that have tried – and failed – to capture my attention the way X-Com did.
You know what would have ruined X-Com for me (or at least weakened its appeal considerably)? If it had a branching storyline with fixed battles (even if I could have chosen to skip some or take them in a a different order). Or if it had a fixed “window” of funding and resource gain throughout the game to make sure things never got too easy or too hard – so that I was always facing an “appropriate” challenge for whatever stage of the game I was in. And if fixed team members that couldn’t perma-die.
Gee, sounds a lot like a few modern RPGs, doesn’t it?