The Bureau: XCOM Declassified


Dominic Monaghan and director Henry Hobson, the minds behind 2K Games “The Bureau: XCOM Declassified” The Burn Room Saga, promoted the live action series on a (media only) live stream on 8 August 2013. There is more depth in these shorts than anyone could have imagined. (Dominic apparently also kicked everybody at IGN’s ass at Mario Kart Wii and other games!)

thebureau Photo by ChemaMansilla


Dom shared details about the cool 50’s style, the thin shoes and bulky backpack he was wearing, and how he would have chosen the bottle over the gun. Director Henry Hobson, however, would have chosen the gun over the bottle. Which one did you choose?

Haven’t watched them yet? Here are the live action shorts:

The Burn Room

Orbit the Clown

The Choice

The Decision

The Chase

The Interrogation

Agent Cole is going through an understandably rough time in the series, as his wife and son were killed by aliens and he must erase their whole existence. “Classically cool” is how Dominic describes the series, and he also talked about being able to create much of the dialogue himself, as well as choose his character’s name (he thought “Cole” was a very American name, and combined it with the name of a schoolboy crush, Jessica Ennis). He also discussed Ennis Cole’s relationship to his son. “Anyone who’s a parent can empathize with the fact that you would lay down your life to protect your kid.” Dominic said he thought about each detail that would allow him to convey his character effectively in a short amount of time. “I wanted him to seem like more of field man, so he wouldn’t be an accomplished typist,” Monaghan explained. “So you see him typing staccato there. He’s dealing with some significant personal issues.” It’s the smaller moments, he said, where you find emotion.

When The Choice short video came out, fans could decide Ennis’s next move, and according to 2K games, with a narrow margin (less than 1%), they chose the bottle ending. During the stream, the alternative ending was shown, and it ended with a more determined Ennis out to revenge his son.

The next video, titled “The Chase”, took about half an hour to make. Dominic and Henry talked about what it was like on set, dealing with snakes, flying ants, rough terrain, and fading light.

At the end of the next video, “The Interrogation”, Ennis’s fate is still unknown. Dominic did talk about Cole’s home (where the interrogation takes place) and it being a very cold environment for the son, Kevin, while Ennis works in a very “adult” environment.

In the next short, “The Aftermath”, the director Henry Hobson promised we would finally get some answers, but what those answers are exactly we will have to see for ourselves when it premieres tomorrow August 9, 2013.

UPDATE: Here is The Aftermath

And a little extra feature… “Dominic Monaghan proves his Skyrim cred”

For Henry Hobson, creating the series was about giving players a brief glimpse into a much bigger story. In fact, he would like to see The Bureau become a larger project. “I can’t think of anything that I’d like to work on more”. Both he and Dominic identified the changing landscape of dramatic television as Netflix and Amazon have entered the production business that might make this possible. “The Bureau: XCOM Declassified” will be available on the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC on August 20.

Dominic Monaghan is also a gamer. His favorites include the Uncharted series, FIFA, Skyrim, Medal of Honor and the original Halo. He also listed several other obscure games, like the story-driven Kentucky Route Zero and mobile title Virus Inc. During a conference call regarding his work, Dominic said: ”I’ll always stay focused on the gaming world and see what’s coming up”. He further said that he has a idea for a game he will “hopefully” pitch to 2K, but didn’t give out any details. He also added that he would be interested to play the lead character in a game. “Yeah, of course. It’s like saying ‘would you eat a whole pizza?’ Yes, I would do that”.  “Some characters in games have as much depth as characters in moves, like [Nathan] Drake in Uncharted, who has so much charisma. Games aren’t just beep, beep, beep. There’s a sophistication that wasn’t around 25 years ago. In another 15 or 20 years, they will be amazing. That’s coming, and you want to be there on the ground level. For actors, there’s a an attractive element of being in a sound studio for three days and then you get paid.”

Dom then also appeared on the Up At Noon show with Greg Miller. CLICK HERE to watch the full show.


Photo by ronnie2k

Photo by ScottPytlik

Watch Dominic answer fan questions in 60 seconds!




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