They're back...only this time the heinous aliens are out to destroy Earth and rule the new frontier. As X-COM commander, it's your sole duty to protect humanity and the prized mining operations in outer space.
User reviews:
Mixed (73 reviews) - 53% of the 73 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Jun 15, 1998

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Packages that include this game

Buy X-COM: Complete Pack

Includes 5 items: X-COM: Apocalypse, X-COM: Enforcer, X-COM: Interceptor, X-COM: Terror From the Deep, X-COM: UFO Defense


About This Game

They're back...only this time the heinous aliens are out to destroy Earth and rule the new frontier. As X-COM commander, it's your sole duty to protect humanity and the prized mining operations in outer space. You must strategically equip your X-COM fighters, amass a formidable arsenal and then fulfill your mandate by going head-to-head with the devious element. The action is fast. And the opposing forces are wicked. But if you are smart, diligent and quick, you will prevail in a masterfully fought campaign to save our planet from perilous collapse.


  • Wreak complete destruction in an addictive and seamless combination of combat action and strategy.
  • Mastermind your plan by purchasing equipment, hiring pilots and researching new technologies.
  • Pilot your own X-COM attack ship in a face-to-face 3D real-time first person environment.

System Requirements

    • Supported OS: Microsoft® 2000/XP/Vista®
    • Processor: Pentium 166MHz or better
    • Memory: 16Mb RAM
    • Graphics: Must be capable of 16-bit graphics (High Color) and have a minimum of 2MB of video RAM
    • Hard Drive: 60 MB Hard Disk Space
Customer reviews
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Mixed (73 reviews)
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52 reviews match the filters above ( Mixed)
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
99 of 105 people (94%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 19, 2014
This game is great for those people who like the overall planning of the original X-com but didn't like the slow pace of the battles. It takes the same experience and replaces those tactical battles with a space fighter sim. It's definately fun but it's a bit of a departure from the rest of the series.

If you are playing on a modern system(xp-recent) then there will be a game breaking bug for this game that will prevent research from completing. THERE IS A FIX FOR THIS and it is a must if you are gonna play it on a modern machine. The thread for it is here:
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31 of 38 people (82%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 13, 2014
X-COM: Interceptor is different than most other XCOM games. Instead of being a turn-based ground combat game, it is an amazing real-time space combat game. Like most XCOM games, you have to manage resources, bases, and soldiers (or in this case, pilots). It isn't too well optimized for modern computers and I think the resolution has a maximum of somewhere around 1080x720, but it is still a great game.

The best part, though, is that it isn't X-COM: Enforcer.
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35 of 52 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
4.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 29, 2013
I love this game and alway have. Sadly if you are playing on a relatively new machine there will be some game killing bugs. 1) alien data jammers can't be killed. If you try to engage them they just dont show up leaving u in space chasing a radar blip that you can never catch untill u get bored and retreat. Its a pain because they shut down your research and there is nothing you can do about it. 2) pirate bases have the same bug. You can't kill them so get ready to fight suicidal pirate fighter craft every 5 minutes. Not fun. If you have an old rig picking up dust somewhere the sure buy this game and enjoy because it really is a fantastic game. But if you don't then I'd pass.
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17 of 23 people (74%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
7.2 hrs on record
Pre-Release Review
Posted: October 5, 2014
Ahh, Interceptor. A not so great flight sim mixed with a not so great strategic game which somehow when merged together forms a very very playable and very fun (and it's still hard, though easiest out of all the old school X-COM games) game.
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12 of 15 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
5.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 19, 2014
If u like Xcom and/or flight sim games, then u will probably enjoy this. I thought it was pretty hard at first, but once I figured out how to play, I had a LOT of fun. I think this game is really underrated. It has all of the cool base management of Xcom, but then the battles are real-time flight sim. The campaign is awesome, and I also really like that there's a "skirmish mode" that u can create your own custom practice battle and jump right into the action and/or practice your fighting skills if needed. I definitely recommend! =)
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8 of 10 people (80%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
11.6 hrs on record
Posted: July 18, 2012
I hear so much hate for Interceptor, but it really is unique. I've never encountered an X-Wing style game where you also control the strategic side. After all those times you were hideously outgunned, or had completely the wrong warheads etc on X-Wing, TIE Fighter etc, it's nice to be able to do something about that. Now it's YOUR job to make sure your craft are up to spec. Also ties UFO, TFTD and Apoc together nicely, and hey its a great game in it's own right. Yes, it isn't the game everyone expected when a new X-Com game was announced back in 1997, but it's a worthy addition to the series.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 3
-Quick Review-
X-COM: Interceptor was the fourth game developed by MicroProse and released in 1998. MicroProse decided to the previous installments had too slow of combat so they decided to stick you into an spaceship instead of controlling units and moving them slowly turn by turn.
Basically this has all the same base construction, slow paced strategy building, but instead of the strategy-game-element used in the battles they replaced those elements with a space ship simulator where you fly and shoot down enemy UFO's.

-Detailed breakdown review-
Remember how in the last game you were fighting to protect the plannet? And then you were forced to fight under water to protect the planet? Then you fought to protect one single city? I'm under the impression that we must have lost there too (because lets face it, X-COM is too hard core for most of the video game audience out there. Especially now-a-days)
So now where do you go when you can't hide underwater, or in one city? You get the heck out of dodge and go to the moon. So welcome to *speaking in a deep narrators voice* X-COM in space! You must do your best to keep the aliens at bay by using your super powers of ocd fine tuning control!

General Base controls:
Most of the controls and mechanics in the previous two games are the same you have a crazy amount of base customability, ship/vehicle customization, freedom to choose where you want to construct new bases. The biggest features I noticed in this version is that there's actually a "help wizard" that pops up whenever you enter into a new window or UI you've not seen before. You can then toggle the wizard to give tool tips over each user interface portal (window) and button to help you learn what does what. (That's pretty big, seeing as the first two games didn't give you any explanation and assumed you had the paper manual that came with the game.
The controls still feel very much like a 1990's game though, you can see they really were coming up with some clever ways to keep the game feeling fresh. Do remember that when I say "controls" I'm specifically talking about the controls and menu's you navigate in the base-view. Once you enter into flight combat that's a whole different ball game.

Flight controls:
Full disclaimer, I played this game on an older windows 7 laptop which has a habit of over heating, I also played with only a keyboard. In the past I could get away with that, because it was turn based. This time things got a bit more interesting.
You can control the game with keys, and you can rebind them! But you turn WAY too sharp and you can't pull off any of the close shots you need to pull off in a flight simulator. But you can also aim with the mouse (or center red-didly-thing in my keyboard, or even the mouse pad) I learned to use a system of switching between the keys and the mouse pad to get some kind of "flight simulator work flow" going, which ended up working for me, at least slightly.

I'd highly suggest getting a joy stick or controller (if controllers are supported.... whichhhhh based on the steam store front it might not be. But it recognizes joy stick buttons, so there's that. If any of you out there still have one of those. I do.) The controls feel really good actually! I think this would be a pretty fun space ship flyer simulator. However I was having flashbacks to playing X-wing alliance, and TIE Fighter...

So I had a look at some dates, and it seems that X-Wing was the first of the space fighter simulator series and was released in 1993, so it's possible there might have been some influence, but it seems the greatest influence came from a game I haven't played: Wing Commander, which has released games from 1990 based on space combat simulation. (looks like I've still got plenty of older games to try out and play, huh.)

As always, older games have problems. I've seen several other reviews mentioning glitches with drones, I can't speak from experience about them because I never played the original game. I can say the steam overlay wasn't working for me, and since I'm playing this on a windows 7 machine, that doesn't bode well at all. I also couldn't exit the game after starting a game. It felt like I was playing the game Hotel California, "You can check-out any time you like, But you can never leave".
There ya go, a 1976 song for a 1993 released game. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go rant about woodstock and other dated references that make me sound older then I really am.

All in all, I can see why this game gets mixed reviews. I could thumbs it up or down. As a reviewer it was nice to have a game that introduced something new to the series, however it's still very difficult to get into, even with the addition of a helper-wizard. Wizards does not magic make.
I could see myself enjoying this game far more on my desktop computer because I like the idea of combining a strategy game AND a flight simulator. (the genre's seem to mix pretty well, in my opinion) There's a very good chance you'll probably pick this game up with an X-COM Game bundle deal. I think it's worth your time if you're looking to play something different. But the X-COM UFO Defense is the staple for the series, and the reboot X-COM: Enemy Unkown is the game which will bring in a new generation of X-COM fans.
I'd suggest those other two games before this one.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
23.8 hrs on record
Posted: January 26, 2012
Fun but ship combat is bad until you get tracing guns that auto target for you, until this point, you are dead weight on your team.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
4.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 16, 2013
so good. space strategy game, with real time alien destrying flying missions. a bit buggy but still worth it
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: March 7, 2013
I wish there was another game that did what X-com Interceptor did, a number of people didnt like this one of the series but i loved it most... unfortunatly it doesnt run well on new PC's, so i would caution anyone buying it to do it when theres a sale just incase.
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Recently Posted
1.6 hrs
Posted: September 2
I tried to get this to run without crashing, but I just couldn't get it to stop crashing...even after installing separate patches. There are some interesting ideas but the core gameplay - the dogfighting - is just not good. (Frame rate is very choppy even by the standards of the time) If you're tempted by this, get Freelancer instead...or X-Wing Versus Tie Fighter, that one even has a name that starts with X.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
2.1 hrs
Posted: June 19
The weakest game of the original X-com series. Tries to steal al ot from Wing Commander.
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Vee ♥
0.2 hrs
Posted: May 5
This game is absolutely confusing. My first mission bring me to no where and no guide to complete the mission. In other word.... I'm LOST !!!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
5.5 hrs
Posted: April 8
I used to play the Demo Version of this game on the Descent Freespace PC Gamer CD-ROM & it's still the best game even in its Full Version Format. Build your Space Colonies, Research Tech & Enlist Pliots as you take on the Alien Invaders in this 4th Installment of the X-COM Series that is made for MS-DOS & Windows 95/98/2000 & XP 32-Bit PCs.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.1 hrs
Posted: April 5
Not for me 7/15
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0.2 hrs
Posted: February 29
Decent space sim for it's time. Feels like a reskined cheap flight sim however Can't really recomend it.
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0.3 hrs
Posted: February 16
Can not even be bothered. As cheep as the normal X-Com games can get to the point that you don't want to play them. At least they work! How is this on sale? I look at the controlls and already my brain begins to swim. I can't figure out how the controlls are meant to work. My older usb controllers are uesless since the joy sticks are shot, and it want's to use those for some reason. And I can't find any way to make my x-box controller work with this without having another migrain. NOT WORTH IT! BROKEN! DO NOT BUY UNLESS THEY FIX IT!
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1.2 hrs
Posted: February 12
I can not recommend this game, on the other hand I can not not recommend this game. It's... complicated.
Before I start explaining, let me link this XKCD comic.

X-COM interceptor is a bad game, but in some peculiar way, enjoyable. Put simply: it's so bad it's good.
I can not in good faith recommend it, because it's bad, on the other hand I can't not recommend it, because it's possible that you may enjoy it.

On strategic side, it's a typical X-COM styled game, adapted to specific environment. You build bases, expand them with modules, research techs (story-wise you download them from Galactic Science Corps, gameplay wise it's just like research in every other such game), you hire pilots, buy craft, weapons and equipment, and send them to intercept UFOs.

Combat is centred about classic dogfighting, with "air drag", max speed and other such elements which are staple of oldschool dogfighting, but make no sense in space. Not that it's unusual for "space" flight sim, a lot are guilty of that and it's not necessarily a bad thing.
Word of warning, combat is very fast paced, so fast that it takes some time to get used to. That's not a problem though, your wingmen are very capable and will win fights for you, until you start carrying your own weight.

That's about facts, but what makes it enjoyable?
Hard to say, attempts at humour are corny, reading "news from Earth" will make you groan or facepalm, interface is clunky because it pretends to be retro-futuristic in-universe screens/displays, combat repetitive and simplistic which leaks into strategic layer also making it simplistic.
Still, campaign is short, individual missions rarely take more then minute, big chunk of which is "fly in", and "hyperspace out" animations, and this is probably what saves Interceptor: it's too short to bore you (too much).

All in all, it's very subjective, I give negative review because it's bad, but I did enjoy it in a way, maybe you will too?

Side note: there's a bug that makes enemy installations impossible to kill, it's solved in unofficial .exe patch, but launching Interceptor with this exe prevented Steam from properly logging my playtime, hence so low value - contrary to what Steam says, I did play game from start to end.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
EagleShark (R)evolution
4.1 hrs
Posted: February 8
Takes a bit of work to get going good, but worth it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny