Hello, Commander. We have received reports that the US Naval Research Laboratory has launched two new satellites into orbit around the Earth. One of them is called: XCOM.


Since it’s researching X-ray communications, the “XCOM” name kinda writes itself! But the team behind it also knew exactly what they were doing when they named it, because check out the satellite’s logo (this is Jake Solomon, lead designer on XCOM and XCOM 2):

If that doesn’t look familiar, here’s XCOM’s logo from the game:



You can read about the satellite’s job here; I recommend you do, because the brief contains the sentence “X-rays can pierce the hot plasma sheath that builds up as spacecraft hurdle through Earth’s atmosphere at hypersonic speeds.”


Luke Plunkett is a Senior Editor based in Canberra, Australia. He has written a book on cosplay, designed a game about airplanes, and also runs cosplay.kotaku.com.

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