XCOM: Enemy Unknown PC Features Revealed

The release date of XCOM: Enemy Unknown quickly approaches and with that the developers have decided on give us a preview of features coming on the PC version.

Lead designer Jake Solomon describes the new HUD in the game as being pretty and which will display loads of data in a neat fitting. It’ll be easy for players to quickly interact with the many decisions found in the HUD.

The PC version will have higher resolution textures and more zoom levels to enhance your experience.

At the end of the console lifecycle, the PC is just superior hardware. So the textures are higher res, the zoom levels are much further. You can see much more of the ant-farm [Solomon’s term for the human HQ].

Right clicking in the game will provide a grid which will overlay on the game. This, Tactical View, will grant players an insight on flanking and making strategies. In addition moving your mouse to an alien’s head will cause the camera to scroll over, telling two hit percentages.

But the real surprise is how differently players approach the game on PC thanks to its bespoke HUD.

Solomon further talked about the new HUD and the tactical view:

I don’t want to draw too much of a line between the versions, but it does feel a little more tactical in the information it gives you in terms of the underlying grid, and the two hit percentages.

And we do have some tooltip text for all the abilities and perks on screen. I’m a hardcore guy with the original game, so for me it just feels really natural.

Because of the nature of the interfaces, I think it’s a little more of a sedate pace [on PC]. You can look at the map and look at the grid and weigh your options a little clearer; as opposed to the console, where you sort of steer around and it just feels different.

With console it’s a little more hectic because you’re going in, and you’re cycling between all your targets, and you’re bumpering around, and the camera swoops around, whereas with PC you can see more information on that main stage.

You sort of spend a little more time thinking about it before you perform an action. And the other thing is that, in the strategy layer, obviously the mouse and keyboard is nice for navigating the menu.

Right-clicking is cancelling; it cancels out of a lot of our menus, and we’ve got all these nested menus. So you can really fly. It’s minor things, but it definitely has a different feel to it.

From the details given, it seems like the new control scheme has been carefully setup according to the new HUD. We’ll know how great it is when the game is released.