• December 4, 2016

"The Bureau: XCOM Declassified"

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Thursday, September 12, 2013 4:30 am

Platforms: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3

Genre: Shooter

Publisher: 2K Games

ESRB Rating: M, for Mature

Grade: 2.5 stars (out of 5)

This game's gorgeous yellow hues evoke a Norman Rockwell painting. All appears idyllic and classic 1960s Americana -- until those darned aliens zoom in and start zapping everyone with their ray guns or kidnapping them for fairly uncomfortable experiments aboard their spaceships.

''The Bureau" puts a third-person-shooter spin on the wildly popular strategy franchise, but artistic design alone does not a successful game make. Sure, elements from the well-known series carry over. You still spend lots of quality time at headquarters, where updates on alien activity are delivered as well as research and development on new weapons and tech. The scenery may have a different look and feel, but the bones remain the same.

When tasked to venture into combat, the cover system functions as it should by taking out enemy sectoids and other life forms. The big shift comes from your squad size. Other entries in the series feature larger squads of soldiers heading into battle with varying skillsets that you manage back at headquarters. In "The Bureau," you only have two compatriots alongside you, and they are as dumb as rocks in both their shooting and movement in battle. The death of a fellow soldier in other "XCOM" games was a devastating moment, yet here you just plug in another warm body and await his impending uselessness.

I found enticing the concept of strong-willed G-men with vests and tommy guns eliminating hordes of aliens. Sadly, this release hits the target only occasionally.

© 2016 Scripps Howard News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
  • 2 Don't Threaten or Abuse. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated. AND PLEASE TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
  • 3 Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
  • 4 Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 5 Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 6 Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Welcome to the discussion.

Entertainment Events

  • 23rd Annual MLK Grande Parade

    • Mon, Jan 16, 10:00 am CST
    • Midtown Houston, Houston

    The MLK Grande Parade Is One Of The Largest Single Day Multicultural Events In The U.S. That Commemorate The MLK National Holiday Observance. …

  • MLK Battle Of The Bands Competition Houston-2017

    • Sun, Jan 15, 4:00 pm CST
    • W.W. Thorne Stadium, Houston

    The MLK Battle Of The Bands Competition-Houston Is One Of The Larger High School Marching Band Competitions In the U.S. Featuring 16 Nationall…

  • MLK Youth Parade-2017

    • Sat, Jan 14, 12:00 pm CST
    • Midtown Houston, Houston

    The MLK Youth Parade Will Kick-Off The 2017 MLK Holiday Weekend. The Parade Will Be Held On January 14, 2017 In Houston's Midtown Originating …

Movie Trailers