Rumors have been swirling of late regarding the status of 2K Marin's long-in-development XCOM shooter. After numerous old promotional materials were pulled down from various 2K sites, people began to wonder if the game had been quietly shelved. Turns out, not so much, as 2K Marin's XCOM has just been in a retooling phase, revamping several key mechanics and concepts in anticipation of a release date this year.
XCOM is now The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, a third-person, tactical squad-based shooter that is, fundamentally, pretty similar to the game originally shown to press over the last few years. However, where The Bureau once allowed for first- and third-person action, the game is now focused solely on a third-person presentation.
However, the game is still a tactics heavy affair, according to the representatives I spoke to from 2K Marin. Players will take on the role of William Carter, a lone wolf FBI agent tasked with dealing with extraterrestrial threats during the JFK years. Carter may not like working with others, but The Bureau will require him to be a "combat quarterback," as 2K's reps put it. You will be commanding all your fellow agents in battle, sending them from place to place, giving them orders and instructions on how to proceed. Similar to the other games in the XCOM series, The Bureau will put an emphasis on permadeath, meaning that squadmates you build up over time will die and stay that way if you aren't careful about your battle tactics.
2K will be allowing press to play The Bureau for the first time soon. Until then, a few new screenshots and a live-action teaser trailer have been uploaded for your perusal. According to 2K, The Bureau is scheduled for release on current-gen platforms August 20th in North America, and August 23rd in Europe. We'll bring you more on The Bureau once we get to check it out for ourselves.