Microprose is a name well known to old school PC gamers for their in-depth simulation games that don't sacrifice playability and fun along the way. X-COM was a combination of a turn-based tactical combat game and a business sim, having the player build and manage an army to repel an invading alien force. But does the game's complexity and high degree of challenge still play well today, or is it left behind by numerous other games of similar concept?
(The game is known as UFO: Enemy Unknown in Europe and X-COM: UFO Defense in North America. the 2012 remake combines the two titles together into XCOM: Enemy Unknown, which makes Googling rather tricky!)
Widely regarded as a genre classic, XCOM: UFO Defense is a game that can be pretty intimidating to newcomers - per the time period it had a rather hefty HUD of icon-only buttons and unlabeled bars, and there was no in-game tutorial - all of its mechanics were instead laid out in a 133-page manual that goes into eye-watering detail about every facet of the game and its intricacies. Even the first thing you see is rather jarring, as you view a zoomed-out 3D model of the Earth and choose where to place your first headquarters, then once you've done that, you just sit and watch a clock tick down and wonder what to do next.
Platform: PC (DOS/Windows) Amiga CD32, Playstation
Released: 1994, 1995, 1998
Recommended Version: I've only personally played the DOS version, but I have heard that the Playstation version is missing some elements of its computer counterparts (like dynamic lighting). The DOS version is also the most widely available nowadays, being available on Steam for about $5 USD.