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XCOM: Enemy Unknown
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The winner of Destructoid's best strategy game of 2012

8:00 PM on 12.14.2012 // Conrad Zimmerman
  @ConradZimmerman

Best of 2012

And now, the last of our editorial picks for the best games of 2012, we bring you the winner of the best strategy game. While settling on which games we would select as our nominees for the category was not at all easy, picking a winner certainly seemed to be, as the strategy category was far and away the most decisive selection when the votes were tallied.

As a reminder, here are our nominees for best strategy game of 2012:

XCOM Enemy Unknown 

Bringing a classic franchise back from the dead can be a terrifying prospect from all angles, whether you're a fan, a designer or a publisher. Developers who attempt this feat of engineering have to strike a balance between satisfying the demands of a pre-existing audience while modernizing elements so that they can compete in the modern age and publishers have to be willing to take a risk on putting games long-forgotten back in the public eye. In this, the 2012 revival of XCOM is nothing short of a triumph. 

Enemy Unkown is a game which successfully blends top-level resource management and global defense with smaller, skirmish-level battles and a progression system that encourages players to connect with the members of their squad, value them, and keenly feel their loss. Its challenges require careful planning, quick thinking and and just enough luck to keep things interesting without undermining the experience.

Additionally, Firaxis should be praised for the user interface developed for the console version, which may very well be the best the genre has ever played with a controller. For once, home console players have a tactical game that feels good in the hands, and that alone is something worth exultation.



Conrad Zimmerman, Moustache
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An avid player of tabletop and video games throughout his life, Conrad has a passion for unique design mechanics and is a nut for gaming history. He can be heard on the comedy podcast () and str... more   |   staff directory



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nanashi avatarnanashi
also Fallout Shelter just made me utter this: "I have to get these pregnancies done.." life is trivial in this game!
Mr Knives avatarMr Knives
Let it be known that Metal Gear 2 for MXS has aged horribly and is no fun to play. In the midst of a MGS marathon, looks like I'm skipping ahead to MGS.
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
"Available: 31 August - This game will unlock in approximately 2 hours" HOLY SHIET! [youtube]https://youtu.be/9jK-NcRmVcw[/youtube]
nanashi avatarnanashi
-nudge nudge- hey Sony, discount Ys: I and II Chronicles and Ys: Seven on the PSP :D
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Just out of curiosity, does anybody here still play Mario Kart 8 at all frequently?
Cosmonstropolis avatarCosmonstropolis
Neighbors ended up calling the cops. I hid under a cardboard box. Police officers were perplexed but went back to their patrol routes after a minute or so.
techsupport avatartechsupport
!a new MGS: Ground Zeroes update file auto dl'd and installed..the day prior to MGSV... hmm.. coincidence? OR... coincidence?
GoofierBrute avatarGoofierBrute
Just got an email from Nintendo saying that my Club Nintendo reward has been shipped and is on its way. Now it's the end of an era. *pours one out for Club Nintendo*
wutangclam avatarwutangclam
I've been thinking of starting up a criticism-minded "game of the month" type podcast. Would anyone be interested in something like that? If you'd wanna be part of it, let me know, I'm generating ideas and looking for contributors
CJ Andriessen avatarCJ Andriessen
Playing the most difficult strategy game ever: trying to figure out what order to beat your backlog in.
ChillyBilly avatarChillyBilly
Transient Ryu stays ripped by riding the rails and throwing other transients off of his rail cars - [IMG]http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b321/Felth/homeless%20ryu.jpg~original[/IMG]
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
I'm so, so sorry everyone. :(
kolten2 avatarkolten2
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJCiF5dBSpweeStTjOqu-uA/videos
TheAngriestCarp avatarTheAngriestCarp
I'm pretty sure you guys know what game I'll be playing tomorrow. One of THE hottest games of the season. That's right, I'm talking about Lunch Truck Tychoon. Kojima ain't got shit on me, mukkas!
Flegma avatarFlegma
Playing Project Zero 2 on Wii. One should hope PZ5 got more sensible controls - twisting the Wiimote left/right to turn the camera does not make sense.
Barry Kelly avatarBarry Kelly
"When you are not playing the game or choose not to join the defense, your FOB will be defended automatically by your Security Team and security devices." Yeah, I think I'll just avoid the FOB functionality in MGS V
Snaveage avatarSnaveage
PSA: If you're picking up Phantom Pain tomorrow, put the kids down for a nap, turn off your phone and tell your partner to pipe down - the opening hour deserves your undivided attention. Enjoy!
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VeryImportantQuestion avatarVeryImportantQuestion
Just read that SquareEnix have applied some weird mutation of crowdfunding mechanics to the Deus Ex: Mankind Divided preorder. I know the last blog I wrote mentioned how big publishers try to pervert these systems, but to think it's already this far gone.
Cosmonstropolis avatarCosmonstropolis
First in line to grab MGS V tomorrow. Close to my house, so it looks like I can eat and sleep comfortably. No one else seems to be waiting at my mailbox. Neighbors are getting suspicious.
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destructoid's previous coverage:
XCOM: Enemy Unknown


  Jun 29

Critical Hit! XCOM: Enemy Unknown finally out for Macs

Running a paramilitary organization has never looked this trendy


  Jun 20

Review: XCOM: Enemy Unknown (iOS)

Relive the despair of permadeath on the go


  Jun 11

Massive sale on PSN keeps good times rolling for Sony

More hot deals than can shake a PS Move controller at


  Apr 09

XCOM: EU for iOS won't go overboard with in-app purchases

'I'm not sure I would be able to sleep at night'


  Mar 23

PAX: 'Full port' of XCOM comes to iOS this summer

Developer Firaxis Games also teases next project


  Feb 26

XCOM: Enemy Unknown is coming to Mac soon

Save the earth on your Apple gizmo


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