30 November, 2013

XCOM: Enemy Within

So yeah, cleared my first playthrough of EW (on normal).

-Didn't do the Slingshot stuff. I ignored the first request when it showed up because all my guys were still injured and it never popped up again.
-Same with the fishing town mission.

-The Progeny stuff was total rubbish. The last mission was fucking pathetic. What the hell, it's the usual abductor ship only you don't even need to fight anything? I shot 2-3 aliens, found the device, chucked a grenade at it and bam, stage clear.

-EXALT was kind of cool but got really repetitive and the last mission was, again, rubbish. They have their own special map but there's not a single unique character/boss or hell any real conclusion to the story except "we found their HQ and blew it up"? That's fucking stupid.

-The gene mods were ehhhhh. Okay, I guess, but not really game-changing. The MEC troopers on the other hand were awesome, as you can see above I had three and the existence of a bunch of tanks with grenade launchers just completely changes the game. They felt overpowered for most of the game, though, until the sectopods and muton elites showed up and they started taking ridiculous amounts of damage, but otherwise it was plenty fun.

-Most of the other new additions were inconsequential... except for the ghost grenades. Oh wow. I only used one of those in the entire playthrough, for the last room of the temple ship, but it was more than enough for me to tell how fucking broken those things are. I just chucked one at my squad and went HOLY SHIT THESE THINGS WORK ON MEC TROOPERS? and then just ran as far as I could into the room. Next turn was just "revealed" "pew pew pew" uber ethereal dies I WIN. Wow.
-Meld was a great incentive to get you to explore the stages faster but once I had three MECs I found myself just letting them run ahead all the time anyway.

-The base defence mission was way less fun and way more tedious than I'd expected it to be.

-New maps! NEW MAPS! In the entire playthrough only like 3-4 maps were ones I'd already seen in Enemy Unknown! That's awesome.

-There only being two new enemy types was kind of disappointing. The seekers were far more of an annoyance than ever a threat. The mectoids were kind of cool at first but got boring quickly.

If asked if I got my money's worth (paid 5300 yen = about USD$50 to get it off Amazon Japan because holy shit I'm not fucking paying $40 for a download) I'd definitely not say no, but would also really hesitate to say yes.

The changes made are pretty significant and yet in the long run kind of insignificant. EXALT amounts to nothing, Progeny amounts to nothing. The endgame is still the usual boring slog. Battleships and supply barges are still shit. MEC troopers are cool but they aren't THAT much of a difference.

I'd definitely recommend it to someone who doesn't yet own the base game, but someone else who has already played the game but isn't one of those looners who has given ironman impossible a million tries... Ehhh, I don't know. I'd lean towards wait for a sale or something. Also I'd say that $40 for a download of it is atrocious and definitely out of the question.

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