While learning Visual Basic for Applications (VBA), Reddit user "crruzi" created a playable version of XCOM in Microsoft's spreadsheet software, Excel. Dubbed as "EXLCOM", the top-down strategic game is placed between the events of XCOM: Enemy Within and the upcoming XCOM 2.
EXLCOM is filled with features which are present in the standard edition of the game, including specialist classes, terrain which can be destroyed, explosives and more. As in the original game, combat follows a strategic turn-by-turn pattern from a top-down perspective on an extremely pixelated map. Crruzi has even incorporated a "simple" level editor to add more depth to his game. Regarding his project, the programmer says:
I just learned VBA for my job and wanted to get familiar with it. Because I love XCOM I decided to make it my project to code a complete XCOM game in excel. The game is set between the events of XCOM:EW and XCOM 2, where a group of guerilla fighters try to liberate their city from ADVENT control.
Anyways, only the tactical game is finished so far, but I am happy to say that what is there works quite well :)
Even though the followers of his thread on Reddit are applauding him for his effort and dedication, Cruzzi has pointed out that there are a few bugs in the game including the absence of a complex strategic layer, and that "it will most likely be horribly unbalanced, so it will definitely not be a polished experience".
Furthermore, some users are also experiencing issues in executing the game on a 64-bit PC, and other problems with the language settings but you can scroll through this Reddit thread to search for user-submitted solutions. You can also download EXLCOM by clicking on this link, however, Crruzi has cautioned that users shouldn't expect too much because the game isn't finished yet, and that he'll be looking to release the final version in the future.