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Play OverviewPlay Overview

XCOM (1994) is a science fiction strategic battle game where you control units to stop an alien invasion. The long-running series has come in many forms, but always has in common the finely tuned turn-based ground combat where you control a squad of soldiers to hunt the aliens.

Tactics are important, as you can’t see enemies until you have line of sight. You also need to carefully equip and use soldiers abilities to perform different duties. You can take cover behind walls and objects in the environment as well as save your movement for opportunity fire. Then between missions you can train, research and equip for the next challenge.
  • XCOM: Enemy Unknown (2012) on Android, iOS, PC, Mac, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360
  • The Bureau: XCOM Declassified (2013) on Mac, PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • XCOM: Enemy Within (2013) an expansion for XCOM: Enemy Unknown on Android, iOS, PC, Mac, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360
  • XCOM 2 (2016) on Mac, PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
  • XCOM 2: War of the Chosen (2017) an expansion for XCOM 2 on Mac, PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
  • XCOM: Chimera Squad (2020) a budget standalone game on PC.

The combination of turn-based strategy and squad tactics spawned a genre of its own with many spin-off games from the XCOM mould. These are worth noting if you are looking for this kind of experience on other systems:
  • Rebelstar Tactical Commander on GBA
  • Ghost Recon Shadow Wars on the 3DS
  • Mario vs Rabbids on Switch

Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked XCOM 4 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 13 months ago.
Kids not old enough for this yet? There are lots of games similar to XCOM (Series). Here are some similar younger-rated games:

Play StylePlay Style

This is a Battle and Strategy game with Action, Adventure, Fighting, Role-Play, Shooting and Simulation elements. You can play with 1 to 2 players in the same room or as a 2-player online game. There is a player vs player online and local challenge where each player equips their squad of soldiers or aliens.

You can play this game in the following styles:


Play Time: This game will take between 30 hours and 45 hours to complete. XCOM takes up to 45 hours to complete, although this doesn’t include the multiplayer option.

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

XCOM 2 is rated PEGI 16 for frequent moderate violence. Violence in the game is realistic in nature, with blood effects used frequently. Once killed, the character's bodies remain on the battlefield until the end of the mission.
Users Interact: The game enables players to interact and communicate with each other, so may expose players to language usually associated with older rated games.

Rated for younger players in the US. XCOM 2 rated ESRB TEEN for Blood, Use of Tobacco, and Violence. From a top-down perspective, players manage resources, engage in combat missions, rescue characters, and terrorize alien installations. Players use rifles, machine guns, pistols, and grenades to kill enemies (e.g., human-, insect-, beast-like characters) in turn-based combat. Attack moves occur in brief cutscenes that depict characters getting shot or wounded/killed by explosions. Splashes and pools of yellow and red blood sometimes appear when characters are injured or killed. During the course of the game, players can customize soldiers with accessories, including lit cigarettes and cigars.

Skill Level

11+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Still, it's important for parents and guardians to consider the maturity required to process the game content. It's also important to ensure children understand in-game purchases and have spending limits set-up.


XCOM usually costs £2.99 to £44.99. 

X-COM: Apocalypse

Steam Store PC £2.99

X-COM: Enforcer

Steam Store PC £2.99

X-COM: Interceptor

Steam Store PC £2.99

X-COM: Terror from the Deep

Steam Store PC £2.99


Amazon StoreSALE PS4 £44.99 £14.89 at the moment
XBox Store Xbox One -


Steam Store PC £34.99
Steam Store Mac £34.99

XCOM: Chimera Squad

Steam Store PC £16.99

XCOM: Enemy Unknown

Steam Store PC £14.99
There are the following additional costs associated with this game:
  • In-Game Purchases: Additional in-game purchases are offered for items that enhance the experience.
XCOM 2 offers paid expansions like the substantial "War of the Chosen" that add stories, missions and characters to the game. There are also smaller content packs that add outfits and accessories. 
It's important to set up your accounts and devices appropriately. More information is on our Financial Resources page.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 01/01/1994, updated in 2017

Price: 66% off

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC, PS Vita, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds

Players: 1-2 (2 online)

Genres: Battle, Strategy (Action, Adventure, Fighting, Role-Play, Shooting and Simulation)

Accessibility: 0 features documented (Tweet Developer )

Components: 3D Third-Person

Developer: Firaxis Games (@FiraxisGames)

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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