NYCC: Aliens: Colonial Marines Preview

NYCC: Aliens: Colonial Marines Preview

image

The story of Aliens continues with exquisite attention to detail.

Alien 3 has its fans, but sci-fi buffs everywhere have been waiting since 1986 for a real sequel to James Cameron's Aliens. The timeless story of Ellen Ripley's disastrous journey to LV-426 has enchanted two generations of filmgoers, but while her adventure continued through two more films, the popular Colonial Marines disappeared into the annals of Hollywood history. Not content with leaving the marines in cold storage, Gearbox Software is set to return to the home world of the xenomorphs and finish the fight once and for all in Aliens: Colonial Marines.

During a press event at New York Comic Con 2012, Randy Pitchford, president of Gearbox, described Aliens as "a film I've been stealing from my entire career." Working alongside Ridley Scott, director of the original Alien and prequel Prometheus, was a dream come true for him. With the director's blessing, Pitchford and his team set about creating a real in-canon sequel to Aliens that incorporates the movie's locations, weapons, creatures, and even a few of its actors - namely, Lance Henriksen (Bishop) and Michael Biehn (Hicks).

Aliens: Colonial Marines takes place shortly after the events of Alien 3, and puts the player in the role of Corporal Winter, a member of the team sent to investigate the Sulaco crew's disappearance. After arriving in the system aboard the Sephora, Winter and his team discover that the xenomorph threat is still very real, and they will need to finish the job that Ripley started.

Pitchford showed off two of the game's levels: a creepy tour of LV-426's surface, and a firefight aboard the Sulaco (although in the game's campaign, the second level actually takes place first). The LV-426 level begins with Winter's team landing in the middle of its unfriendly terrain. The landscape is an eerie blue and infrequent lightning strikes in the background help to heighten the mood. The gameplay during this section was fairly typical for a first-person shooter, with one notable exception: there was no shooting. Winter spends a good ten to fifteen minutes simply wandering around the beautiful, barren landscape, listening to com chatter, collecting dog tags from the original Aliens marines, and revisiting iconic locations, such as the crash site of Ripley's APC. This setup, as well as Winter's first assignment to set up four signal boosters, show that the game, like the films, is as much about tension-building suspense as it is about action-packed payoff.

The Sulaco level was a little more straightforward, although it also provided some tantalizing hints at the larger story. Since Ripley and the marines disobeyed Weyland-Yutani's orders at the end of the second film, the corporation has decided to send its PMCs ("Like Blackwater," says Pitchford) to wipe out the rescue team. Even as xenomorphs attack all humans aboard, the Weyland-Yutani PMCs do their damndest to wipe out Winter and his team. This level felt more like a traditional shooter, although the level design was impressive, and the three-way battle looked like a lot of chaotic fun.

The word that best sums up Aliens: Colonial Marines is "detailed." Gearbox obviously has a lot of love and respect for the Alien franchise, and a thousand little touches (like the xenomorphs' acidic blood damaging Winter if he gets too close) boost what looks like a solid shooter into a project that's worth a look for any fan of the movies. Players can experience the campaign either alone or cooperatively from start to finish, and a competitive multiplayer mode that pits marines against xenomorphs looks very different from the standard FPS deathmatch. Expect the game to hit shelves on February 12, 2013 for the 360, PS3, and PC, with an eventual Wii U release later down the line.

Permalink

I still don't understand why they had so much trouble fitting women into an Alien game. I mean they managed to pu a box in their company's name! =/

Wait a second...
A team of top trained soldiers is sent in to capture the protagonist from the first game/movie. Thing goes apeshit and suddenly it's an all out war for survival with aliens fighting marines fighting black ops. They just need to throw in another enemy alien faction (Predators? Yeah I know they ain't gonna be featured in this game), and you've got the recipe for a game known as Half-Life: Opposing Force. Gearbox's debut took inspiration from Aliens, and now Aliens got some inspiration from Op4. The circle is complete.

This game looks fucking awesome, been waiting well over a decade for it since it was originally announced. I'd love to get my hands on it!

Too bad it's never coming out. :P

Seriously, it's nearly reached Duke Nukem: Forever levels of delays.

NLS:
Wait a second...
A team of top trained soldiers is sent in to capture the protagonist from the first game/movie. Thing goes apeshit and suddenly it's an all out war for survival with aliens fighting marines fighting black ops. They just need to throw in another enemy alien faction (Predators? Yeah I know they ain't gonna be featured in this game), and you've got the recipe for a game known as Half-Life: Opposing Force. Gearbox's debut took inspiration from Aliens, and now Aliens got some inspiration from Op4. The circle is complete.

:3 Preds make any game better, that's just a fact. I'd love to see at least a cameo or reference to them in this game. But as I previously mentioned: I doubt this game will be out in February. :P

But here's something I wanna know...off-topic for the game, but on-topic for Aliens. If we're supposed to accept Prometheus as the official canon prequel for Alien...then just where DO the Preds fit in? Did The Engineers make them too? Or were they an entirely separate/original race?

RJ 17:

NLS:
Wait a second...
A team of top trained soldiers is sent in to capture the protagonist from the first game/movie. Thing goes apeshit and suddenly it's an all out war for survival with aliens fighting marines fighting black ops. They just need to throw in another enemy alien faction (Predators? Yeah I know they ain't gonna be featured in this game), and you've got the recipe for a game known as Half-Life: Opposing Force. Gearbox's debut took inspiration from Aliens, and now Aliens got some inspiration from Op4. The circle is complete.

:3 Preds make any game better, that's just a fact. I'd love to see at least a cameo or reference to them in this game. But as I previously mentioned: I doubt this game will be out in February. :P

But here's something I wanna know...off-topic for the game, but on-topic for Aliens. If we're supposed to accept Prometheus as the official canon prequel for Alien...then just where DO the Preds fit in? Did The Engineers make them too? Or were they an entirely separate/original race?

I'd say they are a separate race. They just discovered the practical use of the aliens as training/hunting tools, and happen to love any kind of conflict between other races where they can just swoop in, crash the party, kill everyone, and then make jewelry out of the bones/spines/skulls for the girl waiting at home. All in time for dinner.
There was also a section on xenopedia about engineers and predators having had violent encounters before. There was even an engineer "head" decorating the trophy wall in the avp2 movie. Though this was before the engineers were revealed to be humanoid beings with an exoskeleton.
It's all a mess of retcons and different authors adding their own ideas and stories. Scott admitted to never even have watched the avp movie (though they share the same basic premise).

NLS:

RJ 17:

NLS:
Wait a second...
A team of top trained soldiers is sent in to capture the protagonist from the first game/movie. Thing goes apeshit and suddenly it's an all out war for survival with aliens fighting marines fighting black ops. They just need to throw in another enemy alien faction (Predators? Yeah I know they ain't gonna be featured in this game), and you've got the recipe for a game known as Half-Life: Opposing Force. Gearbox's debut took inspiration from Aliens, and now Aliens got some inspiration from Op4. The circle is complete.

:3 Preds make any game better, that's just a fact. I'd love to see at least a cameo or reference to them in this game. But as I previously mentioned: I doubt this game will be out in February. :P

But here's something I wanna know...off-topic for the game, but on-topic for Aliens. If we're supposed to accept Prometheus as the official canon prequel for Alien...then just where DO the Preds fit in? Did The Engineers make them too? Or were they an entirely separate/original race?

I'd say they are a separate race. They just discovered the practical use of the aliens as training/hunting tools, and happen to love any kind of conflict between other races where they can just swoop in, crash the party, kill everyone, and then make jewelry out of the bones/spines/skulls for the girl waiting at home. All in time for dinner.
There was also a section on xenopedia about engineers and predators having had violent encounters before. There was even an engineer "head" decorating the trophy wall in the avp2 movie. Though this was before the engineers were revealed to be humanoid beings with an exoskeleton.
It's all a mess of retcons and different authors adding their own ideas and stories. Scott admitted to never even have watched the avp movie (though they share the same basic premise).

im still waiting to see predator kids in a movie. "Predator: my first big hunt" where itty bitty predators hunt down and decapitate the telly tubbies :)

NLS:
Wait a second...
A team of top trained soldiers is sent in to capture the protagonist from the first game/movie. Thing goes apeshit and suddenly it's an all out war for survival with aliens fighting marines fighting black ops. They just need to throw in another enemy alien faction (Predators? Yeah I know they ain't gonna be featured in this game), and you've got the recipe for a game known as Half-Life: Opposing Force. Gearbox's debut took inspiration from Aliens, and now Aliens got some inspiration from Op4. The circle is complete.

Well, the Alien franchise is nothing if not derivative. Most of the Expanded Universe works still revolve heavily around the themes, concepts and locations featured in the second film. Several games related to the series (Alien 3: The Gun, the AVP franchise in all its forms, the Aliens comic series from the 80's) all dealt with different parties searching for other protagonists/prior visitors and getting mixed up in a war with xenos and/or Predators.

This is just par for the course, and after seeing how mediocre Prometheus was (and how the franchise still hasn't had a good sequel in 15 years), I'm more than happy to embrace A:CM. Looks like they've nailed the continuity to a T.

So Basically they've finally made a game that's as good as the original Aliens Vs Predator games (1&2 not the godawful reboot).

Don't get me wrong, I'm super excited for this but find it weird that this preview didn't mention them once when they allready had all of this tension, all of the little touches (acid blood? Check. Motion tracker making me wet myself onaccount of a cockroach? Check.). Was the reboot so bad that it wiped the good games from existance?

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here