XCOM reborn as a first person shooter

The classic sci-fi tactical strategy game has been re-imagined as an FPS

XCOM is back, but not how you remember it. The classic sci-fi tactical strategy game, originally released by Microprose and Mythos Games, has been re-imagined as a first person shooter by 2K Marin.

In a press release issued yesterday, 2K Games announced that its team at 2K Marin is working on a reimagining of the classic XCOM franchise. Here's the release in full:

New York, NY -- April 14, 2010-- 2K Games announced today that XCOM®,the re-imagining of one of gaming's most storied and beloved franchises,is currently in development at 2K Marin, the studio behind the multi-million unit selling BioShock® 2.Currently in development exclusively for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and Windows PC, XCOM combines the strategic core of the groundbreaking franchise with a suspense-filled narrative and distills it into a tense and unique first-person shooter experience.

"With BioShock 2, the team at 2K Marin proved themselves as masters of first-person, suspenseful storytelling, and with XCOM they will re-imagine and expand the rich lore of this revered franchise," said Christoph Hartmann, president of 2K. "Players will explore the world of XCOM from an immersive new perspective and experience firsthand the fear and tension of this gripping narrative ride."

XCOM is the re-imagining of the classic tale of humanity's struggle against an unknown enemy that puts players directly into the shoes of an FBI agent tasked with identifying and eliminating the growing threat. True to the roots of the franchise, players will be placed in charge of overcoming high-stake odds through risky strategic gambits coupled with heart-stopping combat experiences that pit human ingenuity -- and frailty -- against a foe beyond comprehension. By setting the game in a first-person perspective, players will be able to feel the tension and fear that comes with combating a faceless enemy that is violently probing and plotting its way into our world.

The original XCOM (which is an acronym for Extraterrestrial Combat Unit) was first released in 1993 by Mythos Games and Microprose as UFO: Enemy Unknown. It was a tactical strategy and resource management game inspired by the TV series UFO and Timothy Good's Alien Liason. It spawned four sequels, the last of which (XCOM: Enforcer released in 2001 by Hasbro Interactive) was an action game loosely based on the events of the original.

It had been assumed for some time that XCOM was actually the project that the original BioShock team at Irrational Games had been working on for the past few years. It seems we still have to wait to learn what Ken Levine and his group are working on. Something at E3, perhaps?

A site for the game has been created at XCOM.com, but as of right now, it contains the same information revealed in the press release.

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John Davison

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