Zero Punctuation: The Bureau: XCOM Declassified

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The Bureau: XCOM Declassified

This week, Zero Punctuation reviews The Bureau: XCOM Declassified.

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Nothing like a spot of xcom.. And eleven pizza's stacked onto each other..

Also, could I not, in theory, just level two particular characters on the offscreen missions and let them boost me through it?

I do have to agree, not having any actual characters in your squad is probably my biggest issue on the game.

I had fun with it at least but it really wasn't what I was hoping for, which was something like the Conflict: Desert Storm games.

On the topic of alien invasion, here's hoping next week is the Saints Row 4 review.

'Cos it's me job!'

Ah, I love our lexicon sometimes :D

I don't think anyone was expecting this game to not suck.

I had wondered why all the hype from this game suddenly died.

What I took away from that review is that Yahtzee whats a stack of 11 pizzas

I wish my laptop didn't have such serious heat issues. The new, proper XCOM game was great, and this review wanted me to start playing it again. From the start. So I could laugh at the sarcastic German scientist again.
Seriously though, I'm hoping that 'The Bureau' was made as part of a controlled experiment by the development team to show their managers that things like slow, precise, and brilliantly designed games based around management can actually sell better than shooter if you know who you are trying to sell them to.

I wonder what it says about us when you can complain about getting lost in a furniture store on the way to it's restaurant.

TheProfessor234:
I do have to agree, not having any actual characters in your squad is probably my biggest issue on the game.

I haven't played Enemy Unknown *dodges thrown boot* but did they characterize the NPCs there? I thought a big part of the game was that faceless government agents were being fed into the alien meat grinder as governments try desperately to stop the invasion.

Daystar Clarion:
[b]
I don't think anyone was expecting this game to not suck.

I was. *cry*
I actually was more interested in the version -before- they overhauled it. It looked a lot more fun..

Many seem to think that Enemy Unknown was a reaction to the initial backlash towards the Bureau, then known as just XCOM yet I've heard the developers saying the former was in development prior to the negativeness while admitting that it could look like the opposite at first. Plus if you think about it, it doesn't make sense for a reactionary churned out product to be one of the best games of that year when saying it out loud.

I give Firaxis more credit than that... and more than the Bureau...

I still wonder or a x com shooter could work, a lot of the mechanics of x com could work quite well in a squad based shooter.

Thunderous Cacophony:
I wonder what it says about us when you can complain about getting lost in a furniture store on the way to it's restaurant.

TheProfessor234:
I do have to agree, not having any actual characters in your squad is probably my biggest issue on the game.

I haven't played Enemy Unknown *dodges thrown boot* but did they characterize the NPCs there? I thought a big part of the game was that faceless government agents were being fed into the alien meat grinder as governments try desperately to stop the invasion.

Right, But thats the point, You can have a squad of 4 to 6 people, and you as the Director have no personal relationship with them, You order them around on the battlefield, you may grow attached to certain characters over time because Colonel Johnson managed to kill four aliens at in one mission, saved Private Tom's life with a medpack and was hospitalized for a month. They make their own stories, and you will usually remember and feel bad when you lose someone you have had since so and so mission.

But the point in The Bureau is that you are on the field, with these two agents, fighting with them, alongside them. And you probably wouldn't even know their names, you don't interact with them outside of the combat missions, And once they die, everyone, even you goes "well. Who wants his spot on the squad?". Sure they level up, and you'll be sad if you have to level a new guy from level 1, but for a squad you are a part of, shouldn't there be a little bit more?

You know, I have to wonder about something:

When the XCOM shooter was first announced, it looked like it would be focusing mostly on the shooting elements with little else in regards to team management or tactical power wheels and such. It almost seems that when Enemy Unknown became a bigger success than anyone could predict that the team management stuff was being implemented here into Declassified, and I have to be honest with you, I think I would prefer if it was just the shooter. I know people are going to bitch and moan about how then it would just be another bland shooter, and you know what, maybe it would've been, but we'll never know now, now will we? Fuck, even if it was just a bland shooter, it would've at least looked consistent. From the gameplay videos I've seen, the tactical stuff and team management seems to have only dragged the game down in my opinion. Had they just stuck with a shooter idea, there may have been a chance it wouldn't be shit, as opposed to here where it almost seems like they revamped the entire game just to cash in on the sudden boom they got from last year; hell, considering how buggy the game appears, it wouldn't surprise me if the original game was scraped after Enemy Unknown came out and they instead had to build entirely from scratch to match Enemy Unknown's style.

You can send them off on non-playable missions Assassin's Creed-style

Correction: Final Fantasy Tactics-style.

Well... 'Bureau' does imply a government office in the way that 'office' does not.

That's a bit of a shame. I was hoping this one would come out alright. Oh well, still got the old Xcom to play when I want alien shooting time, or Mass effect for alien based storytime.

I was going to get this game. But middling reviews coupled with an extremely boring Quick Look on Giant Bomb scared me away from wasting $60.

Good to hear Yahtzee hated it too. Validates the idea that I didn't really miss much.

ZZoMBiE13:
I was going to get this game. But middling reviews coupled with an extremely boring Quick Look on Giant Bomb scared me away from wasting $60.

Good to hear Yahtzee hated it too. Validates the idea that I didn't really miss much.

Personally, I usually treat Yahtzee's opinion as a test prone to Type II errors but essentially immune to Type I: if he says a game is good, it's going to be great, but if he says it's terrible that doesn't prove anything.

The 11-Story Pizzawich? A fantasy, I'd bet!

And yeah, I've heard pretty much that The Bureau sucks a brick from most everyone.

Jman1236:
On the topic of alien invasion, here's hoping next week is the Saints Row 4 review.

Release date for that is 9/12 in Australia. Don't bet on it.

Aw. After all the drama surrounding it, the fan-hate and the changes the developers promised etc., I was kind of hoping it would be good. Not really fitting to X-COM (neither in terms of gameplay nor in style) as that seemed out of the question, but good in its on right. Too bad.

Oh so it's a generic shooter a la Syndicate 2012 with just the odd reference to the original series with crap management of squadmates. Well I'm still trying to finish XCOM: Enemy Unknown so as amazing as this sounds I'll just go back on that, though the whole "Mission to Base to Mission to Base" thing of XCOM: EU puts me in a trance.

Good video, loved the increase of pace in the voice, though I think I preferred being called "Not you" to refer to an attractive person for the Expo advert.

The only reason I'm not playing XCOM (the proper one, not The Bureau) right now is that I'm waiting for Enemy Within and starving myself so I can devour it with proper relish once it comes out...

What, no lengthy rant about how awful the squaddie AI is? Just a token joke about sitting on a grenade? Because, seriously, based on the footage I've seen the AI seems to have been designed specifically to piss players off. You send them to a spot and they run there with a complete disregard for anything that might be shooting at them or even standing directly in their way (Noah "Spoony" Antweiller said he saw a teammate try to run through a giant alien on his way to the cover spot, and of course get instantly killed by it), and if they do manage to survive long enough to get into cover, they'll immediately get up again and run somewhere else because they have nothing but contempt for you, the mission, or the notion of self-preservation.

Or how about the fact that it's yet another game based entirely around the concept of shooting from cover and that the snap-into-cover mechanic manages to be both overzealous and too picky at the same time. Seriously, this game was practically made to have Yahtzee tear everything about it to pieces and instead he spends almost the whole video complaining about the dull story.

DataSnake:

ZZoMBiE13:
I was going to get this game. But middling reviews coupled with an extremely boring Quick Look on Giant Bomb scared me away from wasting $60.

Good to hear Yahtzee hated it too. Validates the idea that I didn't really miss much.

Personally, I usually treat Yahtzee's opinion as a test prone to Type II errors but essentially immune to Type I: if he says a game is good, it's going to be great, but if he says it's terrible that doesn't prove anything.

That's pretty much my take too, most of the time. In this particular instance though, it's more that his "review" is reinforcing the opinion I'd already made.

I'll still probably get the game eventually on a Steam sale or something. I'm just not eager to bound down to the Best Buy and add it to my collection of discs I paid too much for.

Betrayal! Betrayed me! This game suuuuucks!

image

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nF_Ca45JRFs

Glad to see the conclusion of this fiasco at last.

Showing my age but did anyone play XCOM Interceptor?

I'm one of the 5 people who bought and liked that game. I think the base management, mission choice, and research components were really well done. The actual flying was crappy compared to X Wing but then again nothing could ever beat that.

It seems I am again in the minority that genuinely loves this game.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but is Yahtzee sounding a bit, er, regional? Normally his accent sounds like RP to me.

Astalano:
Betrayal! Betrayed me! This game suuuuucks!

image

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nF_Ca45JRFs

Glad to see the conclusion of this fiasco at last.

Glad to see someone else thought of thst as well. XD

I think there was an agreement over at 2K. 2K: "Alright,we'll try it your way,and make the game you want.(Sees sales for Enemy Unknown) Well...that went better than expected." Other 2K worker: "Hey,Boss. We still have a deadline for that FPS XCOM. What do you want to do with that?" 2K: "Eh,just throw the rest of it together. Nobdy'll buy it when a better one is out,anyway." Heh.

Also,If it were me? Me: "Why are you playing that game?" Other Me: "It's me job." Me: Would you be playing this if it weren't your job?" Other Me: Heck,no.I'd be playing Tales Of Xillia, or Charlie Murder whilst scarfing candy or Ritz peanut butter crackers!" LOL

I kind of liked the first rendition of this too. Perhaps if it had realigned itself where it focused more towards investigation than shooting aliens, and not turn into the squad shooter it is now, it might have been a better product.

Considering the recent announcement of Burial At Sea, it sounds like more people would be interested in a game that's focused on investigative work with a light coating of shooter elements.

Jman1236:
On the topic of alien invasion, here's hoping next week is the Saints Row 4 review.

I got a feeling he's going to enjoy that one....

Zero Serenity:

Jman1236:
On the topic of alien invasion, here's hoping next week is the Saints Row 4 review.

Release date for that is 9/12 in Australia. Don't bet on it.

Also the game is incredibly buggy at the moment.
I doubt it will be properly reviewed anytime soon.

Saw this for $40 at Target. It's been what? Two weeks since it was released?

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