2K Drops the Veil on The Bureau: XCOM Declassified

Today brings news (via a press release they sent us) of The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, the reinvented XCOM game coming from 2K, which is poised to be a sort of origin story for the entire franchise, and yes, it’s no long a FPS.  It’s been changed to a more traditional XCOM style tactical game, which should make fans far happier, but don’t expect it to be a carbon copy of Enemy Unknown

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“The Bureau tells the story of XCOM’s mysterious beginnings,” said Morgan Gray, creative director at 2K Marin. “We’re expanding the universe with a declassified tale of government conspiracy and heroic cover-ups told through third-person tactical gameplay.”

The game is set in the early 60s at the height of the Cold War and focuses on The Bureau, a secret government agency tasked with defending the country, not from the Russians, but an invading alien force.  Players will take control of William Carter who will be leading a squad of agents into the field at the sites of the various alien incursions.  It’s a third person game where you’ll be tasked with commanding your squad of people, and ‘pulling the trigger’.  So it’s still got all the tactical elements, with a little action thrown in for good measure as well. 

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If you’re wondering about whether or not this new game will utilize the permadeath feature that made Enemy Unknown more difficult, yes it will.  Every command decision you make will have serious impact on the game as the whole:

“The team has been working hard to leverage core XCOM elements like tactical decision-making and permanent death of squad mates in a purposeful way that makes this a unique tactical shooter,” added Gray. “To that end, The Bureau will challenge players unlike any other third-person tactical shooter.” 

In all it sounds like they’ve been quite busy on this game during the long silence and are working hard to make sure fans of the series feel at home, yet still be inviting to people entirely new to the XCOM experience.  Fortuantely you won’t even have to wait that long to get your hands on it, as it’s set to release on August 20, 2013 for the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC.

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The year is 1962, JFK is President and the Cold War has the nation gripped by fear – but a far more powerful and insidious enemy than communism is threatening America. Known only to a select few, a top-secret government unit called The Bureau begins investigating and concealing a series of mysterious attacks by an otherworldly enemy. As special agent William Carter, players call the shots, pull the trigger and lead their squad in a gripping third-person tactical shooter set within a high-stakes, covert war to protect humanity. The Bureau has been erasing the truth for decades. The time will come for the truth to be revealed.

-Jordan