So, I finally had some time to try it out... and I like it.
On my first mission, only one of my guys (well, it was a woman, actually) survived, 3 got injured and one killed (tank). The tactical AI sure knows what it is doing. That was on "easy", btw.
I managed to assault some of the aliens before they could coordinate their defense, but then the AI sent two of those mech-alike aliens towards where two of my soldiers were standing on the roof to give sniper support. I tried to reinforce with my tank but in the ensuing battle, the aliens took it and two of my soldiers out before my heroine of the day managed to finish the last alien off.
Meanwhile, another pair of soldiers was attacked and one of them wounded by a weaker alien. I took cover behind a wall and tried to heal him with the heroine-to-be when another of those mech-like things came from the other side. While trying to run away (erm... "retreat strategically"), my wounded soldier got hit again and went down, leaving only said heroine who was then able to kill their persuers from behind cover and proceeded to take out the last alien as mentioned above.
Oh, and it was a winter map. Very nice.
The strategic part seems very basic (research stuff, build stuff, buy and sell stuff and upgrade your base(s)) but that's completely fine, it's the tactical combat and the technical gadgets I'm here for anyway. Tech tree seems fine as well.
Now, about the interface so many are complaining about: It's not as bad as some make it sound. Sure, tooltips would have been nice, but not really necessary.
Some things are a little questionable (not being able to see or shoot out of windows, the slow speed of bullets, having to select the weapon each time you shoot...) but it's nothing I care too much about. It's just the way it works and I can live with it easily.
Summary: Of course I haven't played enough to have an opinion on long-term gameplay or whether some ugly bugs are lurking under the hood but so far it indeed feels like good old X-COM.
(Note: "feels like" as in "is fun and immersive", not as in "is a carbon copy and has exactly the same features")