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July 14th, 2011, 00:15
As most of the X-Com fanbase already knows, the so-called "X-Com reboot" is being made into an FPS. Sickeningly, the reason for this absurd decision has been laid out by a high-ranking 2K executive: Strategy games are "not contemporary," and the move to the FPS genre pushes X-Com "in line with what this generation of gamers want."

http://www.gamespot.com/news/6323542…ll%3Btitle%3B1

Now, I'm all for new ideas and I am willing to keep an open-mind when it comes to new takes on classic franchises (Fallout 3 and New Vegas, for example, were very well-done in my opinion), but this sort of thing makes my skin crawl. This is the perfect evidence of the biggest problem with the gaming industry: decisions being made by executives who are non-gamers. These "corporate suits" are completely out of touch with what can or cannot work in the industry, and it is a tremendous oversight to think that turn-based games can no longer be a commercial success.

I understand that the FPS genre is currently the most profitable, but what publishers fail to realize is that there is a large market for strategy games on the PC; it just appears that turn-based strategy is dead because no one even attempts to make them anymore. However, this can be used to a publisher's advantage: There is such a huge shortage of turn-based strategy games on the market that a reasonable well-made game in the genre will generate a lot of demand. Consider Civilization 5, a turn-based strategy game that is widely considered average at best yet still went on to sell a large number of copies. The Civ series has so little competition that strategy fans bought it anyway simply because there are little to no alternatives within the genre. The Total War series is another example of how successful strategy games can be on the PC.

If this executive would do a little bit of research, he would discover that there is still a very profitable market for turn-based strategy games if they are given the right advertising exposure and development time. Perhaps most importantly (from a purely financial standpoint), turn-based strategy games require a significantly smaller budget than a blockbuster action game requires. Sadly, because most publishing executives are not serious gamers themselves, 2K has jumped to the ignorant conclusion that strategy games are dead, turning what should have been an exciting reemergence of the classic X-Com series into yet another generic shooter in the never-ending quest to create the next Call of Duty blockbuster.
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July 14th, 2011, 01:46
I had posted an interview (or the interview) here, too : http://www.rpgwatch.com/forums/showthread.php?t=13506
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July 14th, 2011, 02:58
Ah, sorry Alrik, I didn't know that you had already mentioned this in another thread. Still, perhaps this deserves its own thread for thoughts (or ranting ) on the ideals of a large publisher like 2K. It would also be interesting to explore - in an objective manner - whether or not turn-based strategy games can be financially viable in this day and age. I've already stated above that I think they absolutely can, but perhaps others will disagree.
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July 14th, 2011, 03:55
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
Consider Civilization 5, a turn-based strategy game that is widely considered average at best yet still went on to sell a large number of copies. The Civ series has so little competition that strategy fans bought it anyway simply because there are little to no alternatives within the genre. The Total War series is another example of how successful strategy games can be on the PC.
I would go as far as say that we are living the golden age of strategy games currently. Turn-based strategy games that is.

Here is some examples (thers lots more available and more coming in future):

Panzer Corps
War in the east
War in the Pacific: Admiral's Edition (one of the best strategy games ever made)
Close Combat
Panzer Command: Ostfront
Armada 2526
Distant Guns
Battlefield Academy
Combat Mission: Normandy
Fantasy Wars
Elven Legacy
Valkyrie Chronicles
Kings bounty
UFO1:Extraterrestrials
UFO2:Extraterrestrials (development)
HoMM

http://www.battlefront.com/images/st…eville%202.jpg
http://i117.photobucket.com/albums/o…1-04-58-72.jpg
http://www.matrixgames.com/files/gam…=600&width=800

There are more and better strategy games available today than ever before in the past 20 years. Quality is excellent. As a strategy gamer I couldnt be more happy.
Last edited by zakhal; July 14th, 2011 at 05:26.
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July 14th, 2011, 04:52
Originally Posted by zakhal View Post
Only in the absolute triple AAA class. If you go just little down from that there is a ton turn-based strategy games available. I would go as far as say that we are living the golden age of strategy games currently. Turn-based strategy games that is.

Here is some examples. Thers lots more available and more coming (real sequel to ufo2 also):
Panzer Corps
War in the east
War in the Pacific: Admiral's Edition (one of the best strategy games ever made)
Close Combat
Panzer Command: Ostfront
Armada 2526
Distant Guns
Battlefield Academy
Combat Mission: Normandy
Fantasy Wars
Elven Legacy
Valkyrie Chronicles

There are more and better strategy games available today than ever before in the past 20 years.
A very good point, zakhal. I'm not sure if any of those titles would surpass, say, Jagged Alliance 2, Galactic Civilizations 2, or the Age of Wonders series in my book, but the few games I've played from that list are very good indeed. (I suppose setting is very important for me, and I've never been a fan of the WW2 setting that several of those games are in).

I was focusing on the AAA realm mostly as a counter to the arguments of the AAA executives who seem to think that turn-based strategy is no longer viable at that level. But you're right, in the smaller scale development studios that aren't AAA status, there is still a very active turn-based strategy market.


edit: ah, you sneaked a few more in your list! Honestly, I really wanted to get into Fantasy Wars and Elven Legacy, but the strictly enforced, non-optional turn limit completely turned me off. I know it's my loss, but I'm the type of player who loves freedom in pursuing my objectives in a strategy game, and I loathe the restrictive nature of a time or turn limit.
Last edited by Nerevarine; July 14th, 2011 at 05:02.
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July 14th, 2011, 05:05
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
I was focusing on the AAA realm mostly as a counter to the arguments of the AAA executives who seem to think that turn-based strategy is no longer viable at that level. But you're right, in the smaller scale development studios that aren't AAA status, there is still a very active turn-based strategy market.
I think there is no point in putting AAA budget into a strategy game because you can make decent one without latest 3D engine or hours worth of cinematics.

edit: ah, you sneaked a few more in your list! Honestly, I really wanted to get into Fantasy Wars and Elven Legacy, but the strictly enforced, non-optional turn limit completely turned me off. I know it's my loss, but I'm the type of player who loves freedom in pursuing my objectives in a strategy game, and I loathe the restrictive nature of a time or turn limit.
I actually played it today for the first time for many hours. Originally I disliked the limit too (two years ago I tried it briefly) but today I started again with easy difficulty and tried the human campaign. I played like 3-4 hours straight and was totally addicted. I didnt restart a single scenario but finished them all in one try.

On easy difficulty there is so much time that you dont have to hurry at all. Also you get plenty of resources if you conquer extra objectives so you dont even need gold victory. Although getting gold is not that hard. At best I took gold while having 50% of time left and all extra objectives conquered. I did loose som units though and took som beating so it wasnt cakewalk. There were many bad situations.
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July 14th, 2011, 05:31
The more I hear about a series I loved and how 2k ruined it by making it bioshock jr. The more I have no interest in the game. Especially in light of the new story facts coming out.

While alien invasions may sound a little far fetched, a gay character sure isn’t. According to Gay Gamer, a new sci-fi video game called XCom features a main character – Dr. Weir – who is a closeted gay man. Set in the 1960s, the scientist is one of several characters in the game expected to release early next year by 2K Marin – the folks who also created the very popular BioShock2.

“He has both a sexual and a political opposition to the elite of the country, which are still very conservative – very focused on America as the best and the brightest,” Jordan Thomas, the creative director of XCom, told the website. “And he doesn’t fit their paradigm. It is hard for them to acknowledge that one of the best scientists in the world is, in their minds, deviant. So he’s struggled with that for a long time.”

During the course of the game, aliens invade Earth and the world must decide whether to rely on the gay doctor to save civilization from demise. Thomas says that even conservatives featured in the game – and who are vehemently anti-gay – must put their bigotry aside in order to do what’s best for humankind. It’s a struggle not only between humans and aliens, but also between the old and new order – something that rings true even today.

But will gamers like the idea of a gay hero?

Players, it turns out, get to decide how they treat the scientist. “There are characters who don’t like working with him,” says Jordan on the website. “They are people of their time. And so you’ll see different positions represented amongst the core cast. …You basically decide how to treat him.”
Especially after reading this.
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July 14th, 2011, 05:33
Originally Posted by zakhal View Post
I think there is no point in putting AAA budget into a strategy game because you can make decent one without latest 3D engine or hours worth of cinematics.
.
I completely agree, and that's part of my point on how shortsighted major publishing executives are; the cost to develop a really solid turn-based strategy game with a decent level of polish is significantly lower than the cost of making a AAA action game with cutting-edge tech and an enormous amount of cut-scenes.

Originally Posted by zakhal View Post
I actually played it today for the first time for many hours. Originally I disliked the limit too (two years ago I tried it briefly) but today I started again with easy difficulty and tried the human campaign. I played like 3-4 hours straight and was totally addicted. I didnt restart a single scenario but finished them all in one try.

On easy difficulty there is so much time that you dont have to hurry at all. Also you get plenty of resources if you conquer extra objectives so you dont even need gold victory. Although getting gold is not that hard. At best I took gold while having 50% of time left and all extra objectives conquered. I did loose som units though and took som beating so it wasnt cakewalk. There were many bad situations
.
Sounds like I'll have to give Fantasy Wars another go. I still don't like that the turn limit can't be turned off, but judging from your account, it doesn't sound quite as restrictive as I initially feared it would be. I guess I'll just have to try it myself and see how it goes.
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July 14th, 2011, 05:34
its the tradition of the franchise to do this sort of thing eh? they did a bunch updated "modern" versions of the game because turn based was dead.

and yet there's been at least one clone then get its back: UFO:ET. And its getting a sequel.

why is turn based considered risky? if publishers their own spin on X-Com that they wouldn't make why are they trying to do this then?

anyway, this rumour has been around awhile. where are those old threads?

ahh..here it is:http://www.rpgwatch.com/forums/showt…highlight=xcom
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July 14th, 2011, 05:58
Since we're talking about 2K Games, this doesn't surprise me at all.

Still, why not make both? Imagine if they did an FPS and a TBS game with overlapping stories, and released them simultaneously. Might have been pretty cool…
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July 14th, 2011, 10:53
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
The more I hear about a series I loved and how 2k ruined it by making it bioshock jr. The more I have no interest in the game. Especially in light of the new story facts coming out.

Especially after reading this.
That actually made me interested. Gay and bisexual men, properly done, is a rarity in games.
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July 14th, 2011, 11:45
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
Ah, sorry Alrik, I didn't know that you had already mentioned this in another thread.
It's okay, don't worry.

What struck me as odd was this point :

“I use the example of music artists. Look at someone old school like Ray Charles, if he would make music today it would still be Ray Charles but he would probably do it more in the style of Kanye West. Bringing Ray Charles back is all fine and good, but it just needs to move on, although the core essence will still be the same."
Because he does have a point there, like it or not.

But - what he doesn't see, is, that some kinds of music are just timeless.

Mozart & Beethoven might not be contemporary (at all), but they'll surely stand "the test of time" - which can be said of only very, very few "contemporary" bands.

Same goes for Blues. Jazz. Hip-Hop, which has become a music gennre of its own, and "progressive ropck" and so on,
they each are their own (non-contemporary" genres which will survive - simply because they have become their own genres in their own right, so to say.

And Blues … Everyone's got the Blues sometimes. Which means that Blues bands or/and singers will never really die out.

Same goes for Jazz : Improvisation is just timeless, regardless which instrument you use.
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July 14th, 2011, 13:38
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
Sounds like I'll have to give Fantasy Wars another go. I still don't like that the turn limit can't be turned off, but judging from your account, it doesn't sound quite as restrictive as I initially feared it would be. I guess I'll just have to try it myself and see how it goes.
Just make sure you play it with "easy" difficulty. I think the time limit on normal is unbalanced.
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July 14th, 2011, 20:08
I finished the human compaign with over 50% gold victories on Normal, first time I played it. It is actually not very hard, you just need to constantly push forward. As long as you are not forced to have "rest" turns, you should be able to do it. The orc campaign though, that is considerably harder.

Its sequel, Elven legacy, is even more forgiving.
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July 14th, 2011, 21:13
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
That actually made me interested. Gay and bisexual men, properly done, is a rarity in games.
Good for for but not everyone does.
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July 15th, 2011, 13:05
I agree. I wouldn't know what to do with this game.
They imho should have implemented a Lesbian as well, while they were at it.
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July 15th, 2011, 16:05
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
I agree. I wouldn't know what to do with this game.
They imho should have implemented a Lesbian as well, while they were at it.
I have seen a few proper (non-sexualized, non-stereotyped) implamentations of lesbians in computergames, such as Veronica in Fallout New Vegas and the landlord in Their Longest Journey.
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July 15th, 2011, 16:06
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
Good for for but not everyone does.
Who cares?
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July 15th, 2011, 19:35
So… what about that new X-Com game?
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July 15th, 2011, 20:13
with a new UFO:ET coming Take2 doesn't seem see the potential for another turn based X-Com. Their non-turn based X-Com's did so well didn't they?
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