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Indie Studio Takes X-Com Into Its Own Hands With Xenonauts

| 12 May 2011 14:02

The official X-Com series is diverging from its roots, so Goldhawk Interactive is developing Xenonauts to satisfy strategy fans instead.

The X-Com series began as an isometric turn-based strategy game called X-Com: UFO Defense (or UFO: Enemy Unknown depending on who you ask) released in 1994. After four sequels were developed over the following 7 years, some of them received rather poorly, the series went AWOL until 2K Marin revealed an uncharacteristic shooter revival called XCom at E3 2010. While XCom is set to disappoint some measure of the gaming population no matter how good it is, those gamers can put their hopes and dreams into Goldhawk Interactive's upcoming Xenonauts instead.

The first look at Xenonauts' ground combat system courtesy of PC Gamer shows off a title that looks just like X-Com: UFO Defense, but cleaned up with modern computing power. Players control a squad of soldiers that must squat behind various forms of cover, only able to see what's in their line of sight. Each soldier can be given an individual load-out before a mission, from various choices of guns and other items like grenades, while Xenonauts also adds vehicles into the mix. Losing one of your soldiers in combat will hurt, as new recruits take some time to be brought up to speed. Ground combat maps are randomly generated, and will eventually feature UFOs to storm to acquire alien technology, but they haven't been implemented yet.

Xenonauts should bring back fond memories for any X-Com fan, though Goldhawk Interactive's title does add new elements like a cover system to keep the formula fresh. There are six alien races that players will encounter, each with many variants on the field depending on rank. Xenonauts also features updated strategic management elements and an air combat system, again, like the original X-Com. The game has been in development for 18 months and is still a work in progress.

Though X-Com's original creators, namely Julian Gollop, have been developing titles such as Rebelstar: Tactical Command for the GBA and the recent Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars for the 3DS, Xenonauts looks a little more like a return to the joy of discovering an alien behind a corner that'll blast your face off with a laser pistol. To find out more about Xenonauts, check out its website here, and you can find out exactly what's going on in these screenshots here

Source: PC Gamer

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