I'm playing UFO Afterlight right now and I really love it. It may not have evolved that much in the years but the mix of the strategy map, tech management and combat just really strike a chord with me. It's awesome.
No the same developers. The series stopped at X-COM 3. But now Cennega is doing a good job, each sequel "After-x" is better. I think soon they will get the "thing" that X-COM had. Real soon i hope =)
I think the series are dissapointing because it is buggy. But that is just me.
The series could be great if it was developed properly. But due to the fact that they never seem to finish the games properly, it's just off-putting. I haven't decided whether I'll be getting Afterlight or not yet. I'll at least need to try out a demo version first.
The last one in the series I tried and enjoyed was Apocalypse. So to jump from that one to Aftershock was a bit of a disappointment. I
think that the worst part of that game was how it required you to do so much on so many levels but none of it did any good. Research was almost completely unrewarding, territories were lost no matter what the research and defence invested in them. Also the train line maintenance was a joke compared to other costs.
I just found it annoying.