Top positive review
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A worthy X-COM clone once heavily modded
on 8 March 2011
The vanilla game represented a decent attempt at a clone of the much-loved original, albiet with some bizarre bugs/omissions which had a negative impact on the nostalgia factor. However, modders have been working almost tirelessly since release to build up on the game, to the point where as of writing it now plays like an enhanced modern remake of the original. Therefore, I would recommend you buy this game, but if you are looking for an X-COM remake in 2011, then I would also recommend you mod it.
review: 4 stars for good effort on original, 5 stars if modded.
More detail on the mods, update for 2011 for new players:
You can purchase either this version or the GOLD version which is available, and mod them to exactly the same final position. The GOLD version is an official release which incorporates the modding work of bman and Coasty, but strips some elements from the game for licensing reasons. This version is the original older release, but the current mods work the same way with either.
After bman/Coasty's work got the official release in the GOLD version, another user Grayfiend took up the job of building the mod, and it is his 'UNIMOD' which the majority of users now play with. You can find this mod very easily by searching the internet.
For total newcomers to X-COM, the original is still a great place to start. You'll need to run it through a free program called DOSBox. However, equally I'd recommend purchasing UFO:ET for a modern experience. It might be best to start only installing bman/Crafty's mod (you can find this by searching) since it is more simplified. If you purchase this version, mod it using bman/Crafty's 4.07 mod. If you purchase the GOLD then you wouldn't need to mod it further (but you would lose some content).
Grayfiend's UNIMOD is quite advanced for new users but is still highly recommended for numerous fixes and additions to the core game - and if you are a turn-based strategy veteran or simply brave (!) then you should give it a go! Buy this OR the GOLD version, it doesn't matter.
Hope this helps, please comment me if you like, keep the UFO:ET/X-COM spirit alive!