XCOM vs. XCOM: Enemy Unknown

With the leaking of a handful of XCOM pictures, it was raised to my attention that there’s some ambiguity going on for XCOM game titles. XCOM originated back in 1994 with the release of the game UFO: Enemy Unknown (also referred to as X-COM: UFO Defense and X-COM: Enemy Unknown). From that point on, five more games were released, along with two titles planned but cancelled. The games would force you think and plan, otherwise your squad members die permanently. It is called one of the best, if not the best, tactical game series.

And it has come a long way since.

But what is XCOM? XCOM was originally a first-person-shooter, but with the leaked pictures, it seems that’s no longer the case. If you’ve seen the pictures already, you have a good idea what the new game looks like, if you haven’t, click here. After the announcement way back in April 2010, the project’s release has been pushed back repeatedly, stopping at 2014 as the release year.

With the two new titles XCOM and XCOM: Enemy Unknown, a newcomer to the series could easily be confused. XCOM: Enemy Unknown is not the same as UFO: Enemy Unknown but was referred to as “a re-imagining” by Firaxis Games. With the graphical appeal and redesign, the new XCOM: Enemy Unknown seems to be shaping up as perhaps the next great tactical strategy game out there.

These games seem to have more than enough in common, the leaked pictures show some features you may have recognized from an Enemy Unknown trailer, like the device used for capturing the hostile aliens. So here’s a tip for telling them apart: Enemy Unknown has a title from the first X-COM game, while just XCOM is the title to the series, and the name of the shooter game.

If you haven’t been through the interactive trailer for XCOM: Enemy Unknown yet, I suggest you try it. If you’re a PC gamer, and like strategy, give the demo a shot on Steam.

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