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X-com

The meaning of «x-com»

X-COM (sometimes stylized as X-Com or XCOM) is a science fiction video game franchise featuring an elite international organization tasked with countering alien invasions of Earth. The series began with the strategy video game A reboot series titled XCOM was published by 2K Games, beginning with the strategy video game XCOM: Enemy Unknown, developed by Firaxis Games and released in 2012 to critical and commercial success. It was followed by the prequel The Bureau: XCOM Declassified and the sequel XCOM 2.

The X-COM core series consisted of four main games published by MicroProse: UFO: Enemy Unknown (also known as X-COM: UFO Defense, PC and Amiga in 1994, Sony PlayStation in 1995), X-COM: Terror from the Deep (PC in 1995, PlayStation in 1996), X-COM: Apocalypse (PC in 1997) and X-COM: Interceptor (PC in 1998). The premise of the franchise is that an alien invasion beginning in 1999 prompts the creation of a clandestine paramilitary organization codenamed X-COM (an abbreviation of "Extraterrestrial Combat") by a coalition of funding nations. The player is charged with leading this force and tasked to secretly engage and research the alien threat. The sequels, against new alien invasions, are set underwater (Terror from the Deep, set in 2040), in a futuristic megacity (Apocalypse, set in 2084), and in space (Interceptor, set in 2067 and making it a prequel to Apocalypse).

UFO: Enemy Unknown, featuring a turn-based ground combat system, remains the most popular and successful game in the series, having been often featured on various lists of best video games of all time.[8] The first sequel, Terror from the Deep, was quickly created by MicroProse's internal team; based on the same game engine and used largely identical gameplay mechanics. Apocalypse took several new directions with the series, introducing an optional real-time combat system and shifting the aesthetics to a retro-futuristic style. A spin-off game, Interceptor, constitutes a hybrid of a strategy game and a space combat flight simulator.

After Interceptor, Hasbro Interactive purchased MicroProse, acquiring its studios and the X-COM brand. There were talks of X-COM toys, comics, and even a cartoon show.[9] A budget range, turn-based tactical play-by-mail multiplayer game Em@il Games: X-COM was released in 1999. In 2001, Hasbro published X-COM: Enforcer, a poorly received third-person shooter loosely based on the events of Enemy Unknown, marking a low point in the series. The X-COM games were also released as part of four compilation releases: X-COM (Collector's Edition) (1998),[10] X-COM Collection (1999)[11] and X-COM: Complete Pack (2008),[12] as well as in 2K Huge Games Pack in 2009.

At least two more major titles have been planned for this series. One of them was X-COM: Genesis, a real-time strategy and tactics game "going back to the roots but in full 3D."[13] Another was X-COM: Alliance (also known as X-COM 4 and the project Fox Force Five), an Aliens-inspired mix of strategy game and first-person perspective tactical shooter, using the licensed original Unreal Engine. However, both of these projects were cancelled after ex-MicroProse Hasbro Interactive studios were all shut down in 1999-2000 (with Alliance being later abortively reactivated in 2001-2002 before being quietly cancelled again without any official announcement). Terry Greer, a former senior artist and head of game design at MicroProse UK, disclosed: "We'd also discussed other avenues for future games including time travel, retaking the solar system (with interplanetary distances playing a significant role in recruitment and resources), and resistance movement concept where you had to fight back after the world was taken and humanity was totally under the alien yoke."[13]

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