It has many time passed since the
Apocalypse release, plasma rifle gets dusty in the closet, last sectoid skin is exchanged for beer, and now only memories of good old days left... But guys from MicroProse have understood all this, and now all game fans got a small present, new game - E-Mail X-Com. However I need to mention the game has changed radically. No more AI and his standard predicable moves, now there is only human opponent. It is possible to play by email and on same computer (hotseat), in last case you need to run a special file, hotseat.exe. One player is playing for humans, other - for aliens. To play by email, two files are necessary - the game itself for first player, and so-called second player component for the other. Only first player can start the game and choose the side to play. Second player joins the game only after received the letter with initial turn from first
player. This initial turn is accompanied by letter with web address included to point where the necessary game client is to be downloaded.
Having started the game and completed the first turn, press "send turn" button and fill in some personal details: your name, email address and opponent email address. You can attach a text message
to each turn sent. What is great, X-Com understands Russian fonts :) And one more important moment. If you accessing Internet through proxy-server, you need to fill in its details.
You can get it from your browser settings. However in most cases the game detects proxy by browser settings automatically. But additional verification is useful.
There are no more isometric view and multilevel maps. The game is more resembling complex chess now, where the price of wrong move is your soldier life. The full version of the game offers a
large set of missions: about 50. The battle takes place on map within one screen (fullscreen or window mode).
The game tactics depend now only on players, and limited by possible unit actions. Your soldier can move, shoot, and, if weapon allows it, open return fire.
allowed us to equip our team by ourselves, but now the units are really close to chess. Death of Commander means you lost the soldier equipped with sniper gun. This unit is important like
Queen in chess. Soldier equipment depends on rank (humans) and monster type (aliens). Usually Commanders have sniper guns, Colonels - flamers, Captains - grenade launchers... Snakemen -
plasma rifles, mutons - helium cannons. Orders issued to soldiers are simple too - they can move, shoot, and be ready to open interrupt fire when moving. When shooting decorative elements
on map, you can gain some pleasant power up (just like in Q!). There even present the analogue of Quad Damage, spy satellite able to show the map for one turn. Power up can be
positive or negative, and designed for humans or aliens.
Our old friends sectoids, mutons, sectopods and dreadful chrysallids are among alien races in the game. Game arsenal in X-Com now based on different principle. In previous games humans have had to completely replace own technologies by alien ones, because alien samples have superceded most part of terran equipment. Now each party has weapons of quite equal power. "Queens"-Commanders are equipped with most deadly weapon, sniper gun; Ethereal able to take your units under their control. Unique abilities of "major" units and different parameters (health, time units per turn) making each unit to be useful for some purposes.
System requirements of E-Mail X-Com are low - minimum 486/66 MHz, Windows 95/98 or NT 4/2000, 8 Mb RAM, and about 5 Mb HDD space. You need to connect to Internet when transferring the turn to your opponent.