5 reasons to play The Bureau: XCOM Declassified

Get a fresh perspective on classic gameplay with our hands-on preview of The Bureau: XCOM Declassified

July 22, 2013
The Bureau XCOM Declassified

2K’s upcoming XCOM shooter, The Bureau, has a mysterious past perhaps befitting its alien conspiracy nature. News of the game dried up back in 2010, but it made a strong return in 2013.

Having laid hands on some preview code, I think it’s safe to say that The Bureau isn’t a merely resurrected project, but a redefined shot at the tactical action genre.

Here are 5 reasons you should check out The Bureau: XCOM Declassified:

It’s a true-to-franchise XCOM game

Despite having a different primary title, The Bureau is a true XCOM game in the franchise.

The 1960’s setting, themes and technologies may be different from the established XCOM norm but it lives up to the franchise name in style, substance and gameplay.

The action and tactical elements are all there, and while you’re not in the traditional isometric view, you’ll feel right at home in The Bureau.

The Bureau XCOM Declassified screenshot 6

It gives you the background

For fans of the XCOM franchise, you’ll know that you’re always thrown into the middle of an alien vs. humanity war, but what about the origins of this titanic struggle?

The Bureau gives you the origin story of how The Bureau and XCOM came to be, watching it as it evolves during the first and initial alien invasion of the US in the 1960’s.

The Bureau shows you exactly how XCOM got so good at covering up the truth and hiding the knowledge of extra-terrestrials from the public, for their own good of course.

The Bureau XCOM Declassified screenshot 3

Alien concoction

If you’re a fan of mindless run-n-gun gameplay, then The Bureau is not for you – but if you like to use some brain-power in your alien-killing plans, then this is your game.

The Bureau is great for gamers who love tactical strategy games, but also harbour third-person shooters as a guilty pleasure.

You’ll have to mix up your strategies as you enter difficult situations, dictating to your team where they should move to and when they should execute their special moves, while getting your hands dirty and delivering some headshots and blowing up some aliens at the same time.

The Bureau XCOM Declassified screenshot 5


In traditional XCOM fashion, The Bureau features the gameplay mechanic of permadeath – meaning your team members stay dead if they are caught on the wrong end of an alien plasma gun.

Due to this, it raises the risk/reward element of the game, and puts the responsibility of your squad’s well-being on your shoulders.

Just in case your team does head toward the white light, you’ll need to keep recruiting squad members and sending them out on other missions, ranking them up and getting them in line just in case something happens to your preferred partners.

The Bureau XCOM Declassified screenshot 2

Twisting tale

The Bureau weaves an interesting and mysterious story, and features an interesting twist that should turn gamers on their heads.

There are many layers to the story, and even the aliens have a back-story themselves. Why are some of the aliens wearing collars? Why are they on Earth? And why are they turning humans into mindless drones?

The Bureau XCOM Declassified screenshot 1

All will be revealed when The Bureau: XCOM Declassified launches on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 on 23 August 2013.

More on XCOM:

XCOM: Enemy Unknown heading to iOS

XCOM’s single-save “Iron Man” mode announced

XCOM reboot release pushed back

XCOM: Enemy Unknown details and screenshots revealed

Tags: headline, The Bureau, The Bureau XCOM Declassified, x-com, XCOM, XCOM Declassified

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