The part turn-based strategy/part base-building fame was initially scheduled for release this November, but Friday’s announcement changed that to February 5, 2016. Firaxis and the game’s publisher 2K Games have explained that the development team needs more time to offer fans the best possible sequel to Enemy Unknown, and will use the extra time to better polish the game before its release.
“We’ve set a high bar for the sequel and the entire team has been working hard to make sure we deliver a great follow-up to Enemy Unknown. We just need a little more time to make it the best possible game,” a post on the XCOM website said.
It may be also a case of this fall being full of highly anticipated games – starting from the nearby release of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, and continuing with Fallout 4, the Need for Speed and Star Wars: Battlefront reboots or Torment: Tides of Numenera. This overcrowded release schedule might hurt the game’s initial sales, so pushing it back makes sense from this perspective.
In any case, the game will have a lot to live up for. XCOM Enemy Unknwon has been a hit with the longstanding series’ fans – a return to form if you might say so. It holds an average score of 89 on review aggregate site Metacritic and a user rating of 8.2, and its follow up stand-alone expansion, XCOM Enemy Within, was also similarly well received.
Fans are also excited for XCOM 2, as it is going to shuffle the cards a bit in the well-respected series. XCOM, or UFO as games in the series were alternatively named, have been mostly about repelling alien invasions. But XCOM 2 changes the setting in this regard – it’s set in a variant of Earth where the aliens won the Enemy Unknown war, and the players assume control of the human resistance force and its mobile base.
This will also shift the focus of the game, at least in its campaign. Whereas in Enemy Unknown, players sent their squads most of the time to investigate alien anomalies, leading in most cases to an ambush by alien forces. Now, players will be the one doing the ambushing, as their forces will deploy in well documented situations – say, a ceremony done in favor of the new alien overlords, with security count and placement known beforehand, leaving players to choose the course of action.
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