UFO: Aftermath First Impressions

Just got Uzis and shotguns for my first try… noticed some of the aliens were carrying USP’s and Glocks and the like. Kinda funky (guess they are converts or somethin, didn’t get research done yet).

— Alan

I have a high tolerance for comparatively crappy graphics even though most of my peers have gravitated out of the pixelated age, so I guess I’m just missing something here. I’ve seen UFO: Aftermath on the shelves, but I’ve held out because, well, X-Com Lite just doesn’t seem to do it for me. Don’t get me wrong - I’ve been playing X-Com on my laptop at night before I go to bed, and I love it. But updated graphics and a speed algorithm that does not require me to Paul-Sheldon-hobble my computer aside, I’m not sure why I’d turn to a game with a shallower game experience and a real-time system stapled onto the shuddering corpse the necromancers are attempting to resurrect over the original. Hell, I -like- the base micromanagement. So right now, a game that is merely a prettier, shallower version of X-Com isn’t going to get my bucks. Besides the trifurcation of the tech tree, what does this game bring to the table that is actually new? Or should I just blindly support it in the hopes that it will get the Gollops funding to do that epic Laser Squad Nemesis: Earth: whatever single player title they are always threatening to make if I pay them for another three years of LSN based upon a half case of bourbon full of empty promises about the Greys? And if so, didn’t I debate against that sort of pansy simpering in a thread a couple weeks ago, even as far as using the word simpering in the attention grabbing first sentence? Thanks in advance. Crypty.

C’mon, Dave, at least read the earlier posts :).

I love the aliens in this game. The puffy ones on two legs.

I have never played X-Com.

Should I go play X-Com?

It’s a classic, but a bit hard on the eyes now. It’s a 320x240 game. Gameplay still holds up.

It’s a classic, but a bit hard on the eyes now. It’s a 320x240 game. Gameplay still holds up.[/quote]

Works with XP?! Where would you find it…offline that is. The bane of living without a credit card…

I’m confused, is the combat pausible real-time, normal turn-based, or “we-go” turn-based, like CMBO or LSN?

As mentioned in another thread I think, you have to go and find a program called Xcomutil and the web page for it - explains how to get XCOM1 to work but not TFTD…

— Alan

It’s normal turn-based with opportunity fire. You leave your guys with enough action points and they’ll fire if an alien moves into view during the aliens’ turn. Same for the aliens.

I’ve discovered something extremely stupid about Aftermath. I’ll describe.

When you install the game and start it up for the first time, you’re presented with the main menu, as in any other game. The options look like this where (g) means greyed out.

Load Game (g) Play Save Game(g)
Options Game(g) Credits

Basically, since you’re starting for the first time, you click “Play” upon which you’re taken straight into the Geoscape, based in the US, and offered the Tutorial tactical mission to learn about controlling your squad.

What the game doesn’t make clear is that there are difficulty and starting position options that it doesn’t offer you. Not only that, but the default difficulty is “Hard” on a scale of Easy-Normal-Hard. Let’s be clear here: In UFO Aftermath, hard means hard.

You can get to the difficulty and start position options, but you need to click on “Game” once you’ve started, create a new Player Profile and you’ll be offered the choice of difficulty and starting in the US, Europe or Asia.

Bangs head against screen. Did anyone from Altar actually play the final build before it was duplicated?

However, you can modify the difficulty mid game by opening


and look for the “difficulty” key at the bottom, changing the value to one of the following, ignoring the brackets. The default is 0.

INT 0 (hard)
INT 1 (normal)
INT 2 (easy)

Oh yeah, and the “Directors Cut” feature that’s bullet-pointed on the back of the box, giving “Exciting movie style camera angles” (paraphrased) actually just wrests the camera from you and orbits round a new Alien when you spot one.

Finally, there are no alien noises whatsoever, not for movement or death. They must have blown the whole audio budget on SMG sound effects and the most hideous voice acting ever.

Sounds like Altar’s take on the mis-aligned difficulty options in X-COM :)

Does the patch just released fix this?

— Alan

I’m actually re-playing through the original X-Com right now, on my XP machine and whie the graphics aren’t good, I don’t find that they get in the way at all. I might be biased having played it the first time around as opposed to coming to it new today, but for me it’s just as enjoyable.

I still get pissed when an “officer” (Captian or the like) gets killed. I still enjoy throwing off the yoke of the Funding Nations once I start unloading alien swag to fund my operations.

So the combat is turn based in this game? I thought I read that it was real-time?


No, I think that comment was about the original X-COM. Aftermath is definately not turn based. It’s real time, but the game auto-pauses on certain occasions, and you can queue up orders while the game is paused.

No, yesterday’s patch was specifically for the UK edition to bring it in line with the other Euro localised versions. It doesn’t even work unless you start a new game. There’s a proper patch coming soon, according to the official forums.

How does it run? I thought I had read it was going to be a system hog.

It’s normal turn-based with opportunity fire. You leave your guys with enough action points and they’ll fire if an alien moves into view during the aliens’ turn. Same for the aliens.[/quote]

So, it’s like JA2. Which I sucked at. Damn.

For some reason, when it comes to tactical combat, I’m much better with the “we-go” system. Except FFTA.

It runs great on my AMD 750 / 512 RAM / GF3ti200.

Supposedly in stores tomorrow (October 16th) here in the USA. The reviews online (none in print yet over here at least) have been mediocre, Games Domain being particularly uninspired by the title. I’m wavering…

I’d have to say after 30+ hours with it, I’d wait for a patch, maybe two. There comes a point in the game where regardless of difficulty level, it all becomes very fucking hard. The hardcoded storyline missions I mentioned earlier in the thread are sort of divorced from the game you’ve been playing on the strategic map in that the designers used some very cheesy alien placement and weapons loadouts. You can get your entire squad smoked seconds after the mission begins in these story missions, with almost nothing you can do about it.

The developers are apparently addressing this discrepancy in the difficulty by making the rest of the game harder. Note the irritatingly insincere use of smiling faces.