X-Team – Review
Follow Genre: Action, Indie, RPG, Strategy
Developer: N-Game Studios
Publisher: N-Game Studios
Platforms: PC
Tested on: PC

X-Team – Review

Site Score
6.5
Good: -Nostalgia and low system requirements
Bad: -No guidance at the start and other small flaws that add up
User Score
7.8
(5 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 7.8/10 (5 votes cast)

I’m sure we all know the feeling about combining two or more things we love into a giant but delicious cocktail. This can be about anything really, in the food industry, for example, they created several combinations of burgers and pizza: the pizza burger and the hamburger pizza. Another field that often tries to do this is game development, the developers themselves often grew up playing games and now want to incorporate their old loves in their work. The latter brings us to X-Team, a game that is a concoction of different items, which might prove to be something interesting.

Story

About a decade ago in 2010, Earth was invaded by an aggressive race of aliens called Sarts. They don’t look like your typical aliens but rather they look like Orcs, it’s almost as if the Dark Portal opened on Earth instead of Azeroth. However, besides wielding axes they also possess much more advanced technology. As in all invasion stories, Earth is not prepared and the Earth’s forces don’t fight as one, they each fight to defend their own piece of land and don’t coordinate a joint counterstrike. In a matter of hours, the separate armies of Earth are all defeated by the Sarts. Luckily, this isn’t the end of the war, survivors all around the globe now unite in a global resistance called the Alliance. The latter seems like another small reference to World of Warcraft. However, even in the face of total destruction, it seems humanity can’t come together and some of the leaders of the Alliance are willing to take huge risks for personal gain. Not much is known about the Sarts at first, or their reasons, but as the story evolves it becomes clear that they carry much darker and deeper secrets with them.

This backstory is not well explained in the game, upon starting a new game you will get a cutscene featuring your freshly created character surviving a helicopter crash. The helicopter was brought down by the Sarts. This does set up the story of your character being alone in Sarts controlled territory crawling with enemies but you might feel somewhat disconnected and confused at first about why you are there in the first place. There are not a lot of options when creating your character and they don’t seem to have much of an impact on the story at all. This is not a huge deal-breaker but it might stop some people from being sucked into the game.

Graphics

The graphics are ok but not great. It should be noted that this is a re-release of a game first released in 2008. When we put it into this context it is easier to understand why the graphics remind us of games such as Dungeon Siege and Command & Conquer: Generals. When comparing them to modern-day graphics they cannot hold up. The game is defined as an RPG and strategy title. When it comes to camera fixation this means very different things, while in a strategy game the camera might be zoomed out more to give you an overview, in an RPG you often want to be closer to your characters. The camera is relatively close to the characters which does not give you a huge overview but that’s where the minimap comes in handy. Again the graphics are not a deal-breaker but something to be aware of when you are judging the game for yourself.

Sound

The game features an upbeat electronic soundtrack, a little on the aggressive side. It might be leaning towards the Command & Conquer games. It does add a sense of urgency to the game. The sound effects for the enemies are somewhat underwhelming, it feels like those space orcs and their alien weapons could have more interesting sound effects in general.

Gameplay

X-Team is a role-playing strategy game with a non-linear story. As mentioned above this is a re-release of the original game of 2008. The game is often compared with Dungeon Siege and Command & Conquer and we can definitely see why. From a gameplay perspective, the resemblance with Dungeon Siege and other party-based RPGs is the biggest.

Like in any good RPG, everything starts with creating your character. Besides choosing a name and gender you must choose between three classes and three special specializations. This creates nine different combinations. You can compare the three classes to some of the more classic archetypes: a heavy weapons character, a stealthy character and a character with special psychic powers.

Your choice here will define your basic stats being strength, dexterity, and mind. These are again relatively classic stats for an RPG. Each class has a natural affinity with one of the stats. The heavy weapons character has a higher amount of strength, to begin with. Strength increases your total amount of hitpoints, dexterity will increase your total amount of armor as well as your armor penetration and mind will increase the power of your abilities. There are dozens of abilities you can choose from throughout the game.

Once you have created your character, the game will drop your character in the first mission, you’ll be alone but throughout the game, you’ll be able to recruit new characters and form a party. If you’re familiar with a game as Dungeon Siege you’ll get the hang of the game pretty fast but, if not you might struggle, especially in the beginning as there is no tutorial. We don’t need the game to hold our hand all the time but a minimum of character movement and interaction could have alleviated a lot of pain early on. This is especially true when your hitpoints run out the first time and your character passes out, rendering you useless, as you’ll be unable to perform any actions. This is very confusing if you’re not told this would happen.

X-Team also has a real-time strategy component where you build your own base and organize your party and provide you with a larger army next to your party for some larger battles. This works well story-wise as it would not make sense for a small group of people to defeat an army that destroyed all of Earth’s armies in a few hours. It’s a nice feature as just like every superhero team you need a cool hideout. It is also nice the base building mechanics of an RTS are well integrated and don’t disconnect you from the flow of the game, the base is an integral part of the map you’re playing.

Conclusion

X-Team is a re-release and should be judged in that context. It cannot stand up against large modern RPGs in content and graphics but will provide fans of the original with an injection of nostalgia. The game lacks in several places and each by themselves can be overlooked but altogether we fear the game will not reach a large audience. But if you do want to give it a try it can currently be picked up at Steam for a tiny price.

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Rating: 7.8/10 (5 votes cast)
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X-Team - Review, 7.8 out of 10 based on 5 ratings
Rex
Rex


I am an Illustrator/Artist who studies Concept Art and Game Design in my free time. Designing things is in my blood and I am always very curious in making games. Motivated and dedicated to become better in every way I can. You only live once and I intend to fully enjoy it! As for gaming itself I do prefer to play the following games: FPS, RPG, Action Adventure Games, Fighting Games, Hack and Slash.

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