Info (OpenXcom)

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What is X-COM?

Haha you're kidding right?

X-Com is a simulation of an alien invasion of earth. It is composed of two parts.

In part 1, you are focused on globe-level activities: Tracking UFO actions around the world (possibly shooting them down, or sending troops to the sites of ship landings), keeping governments happy with your actions, getting funding money from various governments, and spending it on soldiers and equipment.

In part 2, you are in a turn-based, tactical, grid-based combat simulation, with fog-of-war; your goal is generally to defeat (capture or kill) the aliens in that battle. More accurately, you are scored based on a variety of functions (aliens killed, innocent bystanders killed, etc), and your goal is to be positive. It is possible to have to flee but still have positive points (considered a marginal victory -- you might not have stopped the aliens, but you did enough damage that your funding nations will be happy enough).

Most, but not all, of these battles will involve an alien ship, either intact or damaged.

The overall gameplay alternates between globe-level, and single-battlefield level, until either your forces are completely wiped out, or you have defeated the enemy invasion.

What is OpenXcom?

OpenXcom is an open-source clone of the original X-COM, licensed under the GPL and written in C++ / SDL. It was originally founded by SupSuper in February 2009, and has since grown into a small development team surrounded by a very supporting community.

The goal of the project is to bring back the tried and true feel of the original with none of the issues. All the same graphics, sound and gameplay with a brand new codebase written from scratch. This should give it:

  • Fixability: Play the game natively without any need for emulators or fancy hacks, with none of the limitations and bugs that plagued the original. No more 80-item-limit, personnel limits, funding overflows, disconnected facilities, broken proximity grenades, floating soldiers, etc.
  • Moddability: Tweak the game to your heart's content. Sure the original was pretty good, but maybe you just think it could be that bit better. A nicer base layout, better laser weapons, maybe challenge yourself with a custom game mode, or just put in all the crazy stuff you've always wanted! None of it is hardcoded.
  • Flexibility: Port the game to any platform you like, customize it to your liking, or use it to make your own far-fetched remakes. The code is fully documented and open-source so anyone can take a crack at it.


The OpenXcom past, present and future development history

Version Release date Changes
0.1 October 17th, 2010
  • Engine
  • Geoscape
  • Basescape
0.2 January 28th, 2011
  • Language strings
  • Saved games
  • Battlescape
    • Terrain generation
    • Basic units
    • Basic pathfinding, fog of war, lighting
0.3 September 1st, 2011
  • Items
  • Purchasing
  • Selling
  • Transferring
  • Ufopaedia
  • Options
  • Platform-specific Folders
  • Battlescape
    • Item equipping, firing, throwing
    • Environment: fire, smoke, explosions, damage, kills
    • Unit stats
    • AI Phase 1 (patrol, aggro)
0.4 August 14th, 2012
  • Research
  • Manufacture
  • Rulesets
  • Battlescape
    • Terror sites
    • Debriefing, scores, experience and skill ups
    • Large units and other alien units
    • Special items (medi-kit, motion sensor, proximity grenade, psi-amp, mind probe, blaster launcher, electroflare)
0.45 November 5, 2012
  • Ufopaedia
  • Modular rulesets
  • New options
  • Man page / command-line help
  • Logging
0.9 May 7, 2013
  • Alien Missions
  • Scoring
  • Graphs
  • Victory/Defeat
  • Difficulty levels
  • Geoscape
    • Live alien capture
    • Psionic training
    • Multiple dogfights
  • Battlescape
    • All alien units, items and abilities
    • Alien base, X-Com base and Cydonia missions
    • AI Phase 2 (grenades, blaster launcher, taking cover)
  • Intro/Outro
  • Control Options
  • Advanced Options
  • Display Filters
1.0 June 13, 2014
  • Everything vanilla
  • Options and extra features
  • Mod support
  • Save backwards compatibility