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OpenXCom renews the original UFO Defense as a valid option for terror

XCOM's lean and wiry Sectoids may be the new poster-xenos for brutal alien invasions, but thanks to OpenXCom , there's still life left in their smaller, slower and pudgier cousins from 1994. The fan-made, open-source version of the original X-Com: UFO Defense (UFO: Enemy Unknown if you prefer) has been in the making for 4 years. With this latest 0.9 release, it's been given an ending - meaning it's finally possible to drive back the attack and save humanity. Unlikely, but possible.

Having played about with this build, I can attest to just how much smoother the experience is over the original's creeky DOS wrapper. The UI is snappier, the controls are more responsive, and new options give you control over resolution and display modes. And two people died while I was investigating my first crash site, so it's definitely still X-Com.

To avoid any legal attention, no assets are included with the installer , so you'll still need a copy of X-Com: UFO Defense. If you've got the Steam version , installation is simple: just run the executable, and the installer will grab the files you need and copy them over to the OpenXCom folder. It's Windows only for now, but Mac and Linux versions are due soon.

Thanks, JP LeBreton .

Phil Savage

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.