Sid Meier wants to expand XCOM: Enemy Unknown's appeal to action gamers

Firaxis creative head Sid Meier talks about what drew his studio to create a new XCOM game, and how he thinks it can appeal to many different types of gamers.

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For classic strategy fans, the announcement of XCOM: Enemy Unknown was a breath of fresh air. Rather than take the series in a radical new direction (like its cousin, simply titled XCOM), Enemy Unknown pays homage to the older title. Apparently Firaxis feels the same way, and creative development head Sid Meier feels the game could potentially draw in different types of gamers.

"In our dreams we pull in strategy game players, we pull in action players, we pull in RPG players," Meier said.

"There are cool elements of all those gaming styles in XCOM, and they're mixed together in an interesting brew," Meier told Game Informer. "Our goal would be to really appeal to all those players, and to introduce them maybe to some gaming that they haven't played before. An action gamer might play the game for the action part and think, well strategy is pretty fun too. It's not trying to conform to a genre, but trying to find ways to bring this topic to life in the most fun and exciting way possible."

He also says the studio feels committed to doing right by the series, since so many in the Firaxis staff are fans of the original. "We have people here that love the game, honor the game, revere the game, kind of understand what made it great in the first place," Meier said. "I think that made it a natural product for us to do." He says that it's amazing that the property was available as well. "I think certain stars were aligning that allowed this game to make sense for us."

Enemy Unknown is due this fall, and the shooter XCOM will hit in fiscal 2013.

[Screenshot from XCOM.]

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    January 23, 2012 2:45 PM

    Steve Watts posted a new article, Sid Meier wants to expand XCOM: Enemy Unknown's appeal to action gamers.

    Firaxis creative head Sid Meier talks about what drew his studio to create a new XCOM game, and how he thinks it can appeal to many different types of gamers.

    • reply
      January 23, 2012 2:47 PM

      Because there aren't enough action games out there, right?!?!

      • reply
        January 23, 2012 2:56 PM

        I'm usually the first to be a cynic about this kind of stuff but I can see the logic behind this statement: "Our goal would be to really appeal to all those players, and to introduce them maybe to some gaming that they haven't played before. An action gamer might play the game for the action part and think, well strategy is pretty fun too."

        The simple fact is that a lot of people pass off strategy games as unfun without ever having played them, and 'tricking them' into playing something strategy-ish can actually end up creating a new fan of the genre.

        I've seen this play out time and time again with people resistant to this or that style of gameplay, where when properly eased in, someone can enjoy something they thought they'd hate. A relevant example to me would be Dungeons of Dredmor, which pulled in a lot of people who would never normally try the Roguelike genre.

    • reply
      January 23, 2012 3:29 PM

      This just in, Sid Meier revealed to be Peter Molyneux.

      Seriously, stick to what you're good at, Sid... Strategy games (be they real time or turn based)

      Stop trying to make your game appeal to people who won't play your game (this should be called the "Smedley Syndrome", i.e. SWG NGE)

      You've got my money, just don't fuck the game trying to get some backwards hat wearing frat-boy's money.

    • reply
      January 23, 2012 4:53 PM

      I am open-minded. I just hope that the game remains complex.

    • reply
      January 23, 2012 5:16 PM

      Shouldn't the pic for this story be from the turn-based game and not the FPS game.

    • reply
      January 24, 2012 5:44 AM

      What the fuck does Sid Meier know about action games?