The X-Com Spinoffs - Interceptor and Enforcer
Strawberry Jam(Jelly) tastes great on a sandwich. Mayonnaise tastes great as well. But put the two of them together and, although there's a great taste, you feel slightly weird, as if something's not quite right.
That explains both the spinoff's nicely.
Imagine Psychonauts made by Michael Bay.
Got that? Are you holding that in your mind?
...Well, it's not quite like that...
And that moment is what spreads throughout the whole of Enforcer, there's the usual mad-cap running around, leaping tall buildings and firing a whole array of weapons; but there's still that feeling of 'It could have been so much more...'
The story, as it is, concerns the idea of one of the scientists building a Terminator style robot to kill the alien invasion. And as with most of the movie-based console games, this consists of you going through a ludicrous plotline in weird locations collecting powerups.
Within it are some set-pieces, that in the hands of someone like Bungie/Take 2 or Lucasarts could have been awesome...
Riding a speed boat into New York whilst fighting off aliens teleporting onto it, Breaking up a Muten Wrestling Match, Saving a Mall from a 30 foot tall monster....but...
And it's always a but...
It just doesn't really work. Like the sandwich. No-one will believe you can consume something like that, and after a while, neither do you.
Special mention must be given to the Professor though, who manages to challenge Navvie as being the most annoying sidekick ever.
Two sets of people will never really join hands. Role-players and Twitch Gamers. And this game wants to force them together.
From the start, you're at some unknown point in the universe, trying to gain materials with your ships that appeared from nowhere...I've played it for sometime and I still don't get the rationale behind it.
To start with, it's the usual research/plan/recruit before there's a blip and off you shoot.
Then you get there and "KER-CHUNK", you're now in a twitch game. If you've ever played Tie Fighter, (imho, the last GREAT Star Wars game) then you'll know what to expect. If you're of my age, imagine Elite dogfights turned up to 11.
It's really quite cool, your compatriots have their own little personalities and jokes as they buzz the aliens, blasting them into goo and you will feel sorry for some of them. (Others you really want to lodge a missile in their tailpipes)
But then "KER-CHUNK", you're back to the strategy/roleplay.
Imagine going out for a nice pint with a great mate, but the sod wants to pub-crawl and you're being dragged from one great place through cold dark streets to another, and then as soon as you've just got halfway down your pint, he tells you to neck it as they're off in ten seconds.
After a while, you just want to slap him.
Root's final thoughts
So...in summation, whilst there are great things to be had in them, the games really don't stand up to the overall awesomeness of the other three 'pure' X-Com's.