Aliens: Colonial Marines, Another one bites the dust. The year was off to a great start, with my reviews of Devil May Cry and Dead Space 3 are a sign of progression towards a bright future for video games one would think that a video game that has been in development for 6 years or so would turn out better, but you would be horribly wrong and unfortunately I can tell you this right now. Don’t buy this game. Seriously. Don’t.
Throughout the years I have learned one thing. Just because has been in development for a long time doesn’t necessarily mean its going to be good, even if the game has been in development for years. The last game to fall from grace after being in development for what seemed like forever was “Duke Nukem: Forever” even though the game had been in development for many years and was indeed a most wanted game among the fans we all know that the reception surrounding this game was anything but praise worthy, it seems that now we can add Aliens: Colonial Marines to that pile of shame because for a game that’s been in development for 6 years can in no way be a game that took no more than a few months to put together. What happened to the game we all saw at various game conventions? I hope this is an early April fool’s joke and the real Aliens: Colonial Marines is coming sooner.
The story is … well “unique” it is has more holes in it than a slice of Swiss cheese that has been shot up further. We see the “Magical” appearance of the USS Sulaco and how a man who is supposed to be dead is somehow being the messenger of a distress beacon but that’s okay! Because apparently the game is in no way related to the story of Aliens 3 and somehow takes place in some alternate “fan fiction” universe of some sort. The only good thing about the game is how you will find weapons used by the film characters in the game and how there are many easter eggs tying back to the original Aliens movies for you to stumble across and find, along with that we see the return of a few of the original voice actors but other than that the story is a complete atrocity that I can’t even fathom what the story is properly so I’ll just sum it up as simply as I can, did I also forget to mention that somehow there are Humans mixed up in this too and they are also your targets?
You arrive on the Sulaco and SURPRISE! ALIENS HAVE OVER RUN THE SHIP! You go through more of the story and just as you reach the GOOD PART of the game you see the credits rolling which indicates the end of the game. THAT is it. The campaign is only 5 hours long so it’s your choice if you can push through it.
Originally my expectations of this game were high, I was expecting a game that would make me feel like a marine in a tight corridor knowing that at any moment from any vent an Alien can come out with its terrifying shriek and catch me off guard. Instead Aliens: Colonial Marines is basically Call of Duty in space except the Marine is equipped with a WHOLE arsenal at his disposal and he is able to level up IN the SINGLE PLAYER CAMPAIGN! Even Call of Duty keeps the player limited to 2 weapons but the Marine is able to carry an entire black market with him, but they also decided to allow players to customize their weapons with “attachments” such as Red Dot Sights and Camo’s.
The AI in this game is beyond description, The Aliens and Human merc’s will simply rush at you while you shoot at them with your many weapons, the enemies will hide in plain sight and will take at least 3-4 seconds to recognize you before thinking of attacking you. This GIF is a perfect example of the AI at work, this is a Kamikaze Alien which is supposed to rush at you and explode but notice how it simply walks inches past the player with no care in the world.
The fear of the cramped corridors and utilization of the right weapon at the right place is pulled right out from under you, players will have little to no difficulty in seeing an incoming alien and having him shot dead within seconds.
The animations are ABSOLUTELY horrendous, the characters are seen levitating through various portions of the game and this is with every form of AI in the game, later on in the game you will be faced with a powerloader vs a Xenomorph boss fight and that Animation is just laughable, you will see it when you get to it. I still can’t fathom how a game that has been in “development” for 6 years can be such a mess, Games that have been in development for shorter turn out MUCH better, but you would have to be a fool to believe this game is a result of 6 years of “development”.
Graphics & Sound:
This is where I was cringing a lot, the graphics look like something out of the early part of the current generation console games. The PC version is beautiful and offers many bells and whistles, but the console version looks like a complete mess. Textures take their sweet time popping in and out, the particle effects are dreadful, and the texture details themselves are a downright eye sore! In the generation where games continue to get beautiful we see these games come along and ruin the experience for the console players! To compare it to even the early generation PS3 / Xbox 360 would not be fair.
The only thing that the game HAS going for it is the sound engine, all the effects sound amazing and very much like the movie right down to the unique sound made by the plasma rifle to the shrieks of the Aliens approaching you. Aside from the good sound design I really can’t say much else.
I really can’t say anything more about the graphics because this is the most that I was able to piece together.
The multiplayer is VERY fun! A quick protip though, don’t be a Xeno and you will be ALL good. The game currently offers 2 game modes, one is survival which is Left 4 Dead style “point A to point B” except imagine all of the aliens completely underpowered, weak and nothing but chew toys for the Marines. Now imagine that the marines themselves are the bullies in a playground and they are giving every kid on the playground a wedgie with no teachers to save them, those kids on the playground are the Xeno. Oh and currently Survival has a large variety of maps to choose from! You can choose from TWO! THAT’S RIGHT! TWO WHOLE MAPS!
Things don’t get any better in the competitive arena where once again the Aliens are SEVERLY underpowered and even an entry-level Marine will have no problem in killing off all 4 Xeno’s. The underpowered Xeno’s are one thing but the netcode of the game is severely un-optimized and the lag is absolutely horrendous to where losing Xeno players might just flip their tables in pure frustration.
The multiplayer is an ABSOLUTE mess. I suggest you don’t even look at it. Seriously. Don’t.
We have our new Duke Nukem: Forever. All I can say is the following, if you are DIE HARD fan of the alien series then this is a plea from a fellow fan to you. Do NOT purchase this game! RENT it, Borrow it from a friend or just wait for it to go on the steam sale BUT FOR THE LOVE OF GAMING DO NOT BUY THIS! The AI is dumber than a sack of bricks, animations are terrible, your marine is a walking battle tank loaded with a plethora of weapons, the multiplayer is VERY ONE SIDED. The only REAL good thing here is how the voice talents of the original cast are present, the use of the “legendary” weapons of people in the previous aliens moves and finally all the easter eggs hidden throughout the game that show a lot of stuff from the previous Aliens Movies.
Aside from the basic novelty value, this game is an absolute mess. If someone were to tell me this game took a shocking 6 years to develop I would laugh! I would even give “Walking Dead: Survival Instinct” better praise because at least they are being honest about what we are getting, this game is an absolute insult to what we were shown for many years.
As a fellow gamer, aliens fan and an avid FPS player, I especially implore the console players to NOT buy this game. This is the worst scenario of Buyers remorse you will EVER face, think of this as Duke Nukem: Forever but in 2013.
**To counter the release of this horrendous game GamingIO would like to propose something to our readers, The top 3 people who give us the funniest caption to the GIF in this review will win a game that does not suck as bad as this game (and it’s not even DNF) ! Just post in the comments.Date posted: February 14, 2013