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Irrational Games Developing X-COM Title?

by Chris Remo, Feb 17, 2007 12:23pm PST

Irrational Games, developer of System Shock 2 as well as the upcoming BioShock (X360, PC), may be working on a successor to Microprose's PC tactical sci-fi classic X-COM: UFO Defense. Evidence suggesting the new game's existence comes by way of a resume found on the official website of law firm Fierst, Pucci & Kane, LLP. It was listed in the CV of firm partner Frederick U. Fierst, which states that among Fierst's clients are "Ken Levine and Jonathan Chey, founders of Irrational Games LLC." The current version of the document has had the pertinent reference removed, but a cached version of the document lists the following games as being credited to the Boston, Massachusetts- and Canberra, Australia-based developer (emphasis added):

System Shock 2, Tribes 3, SWAT, X-Com, BioShock, Freedom Force
Fierst, Pucci & Kane is no stranger to the video games industry, with clients including Shiny founder Dave Perry, The Behemoth, High Voltage Software, The Tetris Company, Paradox Interactive, and everybody's favorite copyright protection service, StarForce. X-COM has spawned several sequels since the original game's release in late 1993, though the franchise has not seen a new entry since 2001's action spinoff X-COM: Enforcer. Studio head Ken Levine is known to be a diehard fan of X-COM. He has referred to the game as "sort of like my first love," and frequently mentions it as an example of strong design that stands the test of time. He has cited X-COM as the single greatest influence on Irrational's Freedom Force series as well as a more minor influence on the upcoming BioShock. Developer MicroProse was acquired in 1998 by Hasbro, and the development studio was closed soon after; in 2001, Atari (then Infogrames) acquired Hasbro. Coincidentally, original Microprose co-founder Sid Meier now heads up design at Firaxis Games, which is owned by Irrational Games parent 2K Games (in turn a label of Take-Two Interactive). Levine declined to comment on Irrational's potential developments when contacted by Shacknews. At the moment this can be taken only as a rumor. Further inquiries have been sent to 2K Games and Irrational Games. Update: Shacker baron calamity points out that Take-Two Interactive acquired the X-Com property in full from Atari in 2005, just a few months before Irrational Games was acquired by the publisher.




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