The new one has great mechanics, combat wise, it's pretty piss poor on a strategic scale, basically because there isn't anything there. When you're sitting around with just the one base and can easily respond everywhere from it, you're nowhere near as deep into the muck as you were in the original game.
Expanding out and not getting your ass kicked was a real challenge, actually protecting the planet was a damned hard thing to do. EU/EW is a good game, but it's not nearly as deep as the original was even if the capabilities of your one base are quite impressive.
agreed, I think xcom is one of those titles that will forever be difficult to recapture the "magic". since I played the original, there have been many attempts to kick start the genere with a yet another reimaging, they all fell short one way or another in ways that were difficult do describe, ven its own sequel tftd. The ones that did best were not the ones that slavishly attempted to ape everything in the original(one a few years ago that has legally different but basically identical ideas comes to mind.. ufo afterlight?). The ones that did best were games that said "xcom was the defining squad based tactical geosim game" & did their own thing from there.
xcom:EU was a great game for what it was & I got tons of enjoyment out of it, xenonauts is likewise a good game but...
You must be one of those "like the original or NO!" guys. You should be happy for what you get and hope for better.
Did you find Xenonauts as great as the original?
Hardly, but since this appears to be a trick question (well, statement), I'll respond to both parts. Branding fills me with ennui, not passion. I'm quite capable of looking at a game on its own (most people can, suggesting otherwise is disingenuous).
Sure, I might hope for better, but the rest of that statement is just hogwash.
It's a bit difficult to compare a game I played last year to one I played 20 years ago in that way. Xenonauts is the most like the original that I've played (excluding TFTD of course), but they are different games. In most ways Xenonauts is a better game. There is less inventory management, less randomness (or the RNG kind) and numerous interface improvements (although there is plenty of room for improvement here still).
In my opinion the major flaws in Xenonauts are the game engine, funding is heavily biased toward air superiority, lack of research or equipment to help defend against psionic attacks, and lack of a training facility type building for bases.
I find that the maps are just too crowded & ranges too short given the bizarre advancement system exacerbates the lack of training type facillity. there are a ton of mods for it in the steam workshop, some pretty good improvements, but the killbox entrance you have to pass through w/ every ufo is the most bothersome thing IMO & one of the mods helps there
Now, if SD made something (maybe early Iconian v: Yor set in pre hyperdrives?) as a squad based tactical geosim type thing without going into the xcom mythos, it could be very interesting since the yor aren't yet another alien invader but a part of society that one day achieved a technological singularity & was not hard to reach due to orders of magnitude higher technology coming from hammerspace, but simply because they don't need to breathe & can trivially colonize asteroids, the sea floor, etc to grow in strength from (or vice versa simply because all of the existing infrastructure is still iconian).
It doesn't take much reading from the yor tech briefings to realize thatsomeone at stardock wants to dive into the exploring newfound sapience+sentience pool & a squad based geosim type thing set during the pre-hyperdrive yor/iconian period could be a great place for it to start blossoming in ways that would be more difficult to do on galactic scales.