Info (Genesis)

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History of Genesis

On the 7th of December 1999, Hasbro Interactive announced that it would be cutting 2200 jobs, and shutting down the Alameda and Chapel Hill studios (Alameda being the original headquarters of Microprose).

Dave Ellis (ex-designer of X-COM: Genesis) first opened a channel to the X-COM community back in April of 1998, on the X-COM Apocalypse Central WWWBoard, asking for ideas to be sent in for X-COM: Interceptor. This spawned great interest and an upsurge of activity. About 6 months later, in October 1998, Dave posted to the UFO Comm Centre and X-COM Central forums, announcing there was to be a new X-COM game, who's title was later revealed as X-COM: Genesis. He was asking for ideas from the fans. This was the start of a dream game that will never hit the shelves...

Hasbro Interactive claimed they would continue with the game's development, but they didn't. X-COM: Genesis was cancelled and hasn't been worked on since. Since Infogrames took over there has not been any word on it, so it's assumed the game is definitely dead.

On 2003 Dave Ellis gave an interview to the site The Last Outpost (available through this link) where he discussed the storyline and concepts beyond Genesis.

Heres the Genesis story setup (directly from the design document)

Its September 8, 2085, just eight days after X-COM closed the last dimension gate, and clean-up crews in Mega-Primus are still in the midst of clearing the rubble from the latest alien incursion (chronicled in X-COM Apocalypse).

With no warning, all communications with Earth installations on Mars and in the asteroid belt are lost. Patrols sent to investigate are lost without a trace. X-COM places its Earth forces on alert, but they are still scattered and disorganized in the wake of the Third Alien War. To top it off, all the new weapons and defense systems based on the trans-dimensional aliens disruptor technology ceased to function the moment the dimension gate was shut, leaving Earth forces with ships and troops that are poorly equipped to deal with any major threat.

Less than a half hour later, communications with Tranquility and the rest of the lunar colonies are cut off no warning of impending problems, just a complete cessation of comm traffic. Moments later, the Earth Defense Network satellites detect a massive alien fleet moving toward the planet. Every X-COM ship is immediately scrambled, but the battle is short and bloody. Less than an hour after its initial detection, the alien invasion fleet settles into Earth orbit.

Moments later, the alien ground assault has begun.

In the Frontier, 100 light-years from Earth, all official communications traffic from Earth and her in-system colonies and outposts is cut off without warning on September 8. Not knowing what has caused the situation, an immediate ban is placed on all commercial and military starship traffic between the Sol system and the Frontier.

For weeks, there is no word whatsoever from Earth, and unmanned probes sent to investigate disappear without a trace. Then, starting on September 22, several tight-band transmissions are picked up by X-COM listening posts on the edge of the Frontier.

The messages come Earth Force an ad-hoc group of human freedom fighters. The messages detailed the alien invasion. Every major city on the planet was now under alien control. Mega-Primus, the center of all X-COM forces on the planet, had been the first to fall. Every day, the aliens were spreading their forces farther over the face of the planet to either eradicate or enslave all humans in the outlying areas.

For the time being, the soldiers of Earth Force were holding their own. Steering clear of the major cities, Earth Force squadrons had managed to secure and hold a number of small population and raw material acquisition centers on several continents, but the aliens were gaining ground daily. For security reasons, the individual Earth Force cells are not aware of the location of all of the other cells. The unfortunate consequence of this is that they are unable to mount a large-scale campaign against the aliens. With their forces thus scattered, it was only a matter of time before they had captured or killed every human on the planet.

The leader of the freedom fighters, an ex-X-COM Captain named Carrie Ogawa, ended the last of the short transmissions with a plea for help. The aliens were pressing their offensive and forcing Earth Force troops into a purely defensive role. At best, the freedom fighters in the hardest hit areas could only be expected to survive for a month to six weeks. Unless X-COM could muster forces on the Frontier and send aid, Earth would be lost altogether.

The X-COM commander makes immediate plans to send a huge force of X-COM ground troops, armed to the teeth, to investigate, and decides to take command of the mission personally. Accompanying the soldiers is a contingent of scientists and engineers to act as support crew to the military personnel. Their goal: to retake Earth and return humankind to dominance.

Four Jamestown-class Star Ferries, huge long-range craft originally designed as self-contained bases to provide living and working facilities for colonists either on a planets surface or in orbit, are immediately moved into the orbital shipyards at Transtellar, where they are upgraded with the latest in lab and manufacturing facilities, detection and communications equipment, defensive shielding, and ship weaponry. Accompanying the Star Ferries is a fleet of Patton-class military cruisers.

After the upgrades are complete, the four colony ships Jamestown, Botany Bay, Tranquility, and Yorktown are loaded with personnel and equipment. On October 12, 2085, they set a course for Earth and leap into hyperspace for the long journey home.

The X-COM ships arrive at Earth on December 14 after their two-month journey. Dropping out of hyperspace behind the Moon, the four ships minimize their power signatures so as not to be detected. As they move out of the Moons shadow, their sensors show nothing. Earth's space lanes are completely void of any spacecraft activity, alien or otherwise. The X-COM commander, aboard the Tranquility, orders the fleet to proceed with caution.

Suddenly, multiple spacecraft launches are detected on Earth. A fleet of alien ships takes to the skies on an intercept course, several heading toward each of the X-COM craft. The Star Ferries take evasive action and attempt to set an approach vector, while the Pattons join the battle in earnest. Intercept craft are launched to defend the large, slow moving craft but, despite their agility and firepower, they don't fare much better.

The fight is short but fierce. Despite being severely outmatched the Pattons and the fighters inflict heavy damage on the alien fleet, taking out more than half of their ships. Still, the aliens gain the upper hand, and the X-COM battlecruisers are destroyed one by one. A number of the alien vessels break through the foundering X-COM fleet and proceed on an intercept course toward the Star Ferries.

The Botany Bay is the first to succumb. Losing power, it drops like a rock into Earth's atmosphere. Yorktown and Jamestown quickly follow, each dropping out of view in a ball of flames.

Soon it is Tranquility versus three alien vessels two cruisers and a light frigate. The Tranquility and her remaining fighter manage to take out the two cruisers but not before the control systems of the colony ship are critically damaged. The huge vessel follows the rest of the doomed X-COM fleet into the atmosphere. Relentless, the alien frigate continues its attack, following the Tranquility toward the surface.

Through superhuman effort, the helmsman of the Tranquility manages to angle the ship toward an isolated wilderness area, adjusting the trajectory so that the ship isn't destroyed on impact. Tranquility hits the ground with tremendous force nonetheless, ripping a huge furrow in the ground miles long, and almost completely burying most of the ships superstructure. Despite suffering a great deal of damage and a huge number of casualties, the Tranquility has made it to Earth.

Unfortunately, the alien frigate is right there with her. Luckily, the Tranquilitys scanners show that no transmission has yet been sent to indicate the location of the crash site. Acting quickly, the X-COM commander assesses the situation and musters a small team of soldiers. Armed only with what they are able to scavenge from the Tranquilitys hangar deck area, the team exits the ship and launches a squad assault on the alien vessel.

Apparently, the alien craft suffered more damage than was anticipated. Most of its crew is dead, and the remaining aliens are scattered throughout the ship and in the impact crater created by the Tranquilitys less than perfect landing.

The aliens manage to mount moderate resistance. Although the fight is far from easy the aliens have a distinct advantage under cover of darkness it is relatively short. The X-COM squad is victorious they manage to eliminate all of the frigates crew before they can get off a message as to the whereabouts of the crash site.

Fearing that the alien craft will be discovered, the X-COM commander orders it destroyed. Scavenging all they can beforehand, the X-COM squad sets explosive charges in the frigates power core, destroying the vessel.

Safe for the moment, the X-COM commander turns to the task of mustering whats left of his crew and getting on with the mission they were sent here to perform a mission that will now be much more difficult than originally anticipated.

Heres mission types: (directly from the design document)

UFO Search and Recovery: Soldiers are sent to the site of a UFO that has been downed by an interceptor. The goal of the mission is to kill or capture the surviving aliens and recover as much as possible from the wreckage of the ship.

UFO Assault: Soldiers are sent to the site of an intact UFO that has landed. Although this mission is usually much more difficult than the Search and Recovery mission where some of the alien crew is always killed in the crash, the goals are essentially the same.

Terror Mission: Soldiers are sent to a human-controlled city where a group of alien terrorists are attempting to kill or enslave the human population and take control of the city. The goal is to eliminate or capture all the attacking aliens, while also preventing as many civilians as possible from getting killed in the process. Success in Terror Missions is much more imperative in Genesis, since every human city that falls under alien control reduces the players monthly resource income.

Liberation Mission: Soldiers are sent to an alien-controlled city or facility (such as a labor camp) to wrest control from the alien captors. The goal is identical to that of a Terror Mission. The difference here is that the aliens are already entrenched, which makes it a much more difficult endeavor.

Alien Facility Assault: Soldiers are sent to the site of an alien facility. The goal of the mission is to eliminate or capture all of the aliens and recover as much as possible from the facility. In Genesis, this mission category encompasses a number of different mission sub-types, each of which takes place at a different alien facility. Alien facilities include bases, prison camps, weapons depots, communication centers, and UFO bases. The result of a successful mission at each different facility yields a different kind of reward for the player.

X-COM Base Defense: Aliens invade one of the players bases. The soldiers therein must defend the base. The goal (obviously) is to kill or capture all the invading aliens. As in Apocalypse, some of the scientists and engineers stationed at the base may be present during the attack. If this is the case, the player is in control of them they can do what the soldiers can do, albeit less effectively but the primary goal where they are concerned is to keep them safe. Non-combat personnel should be used in battle only as a last resort.

Scripted Missions: The game includes a variety of scripted missions that play pivotal roles in Genesis's story progression. One example is the first mission of the game, which is always the same. Other scripted missions will be developed as the design progresses. There will be up to 20 scripted missions in Genesis, all of which may or may not appear in any one game.


1 Dave Ellis: Genesis by cyke at


To honor the X-COM: Genesis team, I am listing the credits with names and roles. Here we go.

Adam Cogan - Artist
Ben Cloward - Artist
Ben Lichius - Artist
Brian Hagan - Artist
William 'Dink' Thompson - Artist
Eric Peterson - Art Director
Henry Schwetzke - Senior Artist
Jeremiah Washburn - Artist
Jeremy Bernal - Senior Artist
Mike McClelland - Lead Artist
Hugh Ackerman - Artist
Marc Racine - Producer
Dave Ellis - Designer
Wayne Harvey - Lead Programmer
Rico Stenson - Programmer
Kevin Nelson - Programmer
Chris Nash - Programmer

William Denman - Studio Head

See Also

Original Series UFO Badge UFO Defense Info (1994)TFTD Badge TFTD InfoApocalypse Insignia Apocalypse Info
Reboot Series Vigilo Confido black.png XCOM Enemy Unknown (2012) InfoVigilo Confido shield.png The Bureau: XCOM Declassified Info
Reboot Sequels Vigilo Confido shield.png XCOM 2 InfoVigilo Confido shield.png XCOM: Chimera Squad Info
Spinoffs Interceptor Badge Interceptor InfoE-Mail X-Com Em@il InfoEnforcer Info
Discontinued XCOM logo X-Com Genesis InfoXCOM logo X-Com Alliance Info