We give our thanks to World of CD Keys, our sponsor for providing us a Alien Colonial Marines PC keys for this review, you can check them out here
Recently we’ve been given Aliens: Colonial Marines by World of CD keys for reviewing and figured that since it was a co-op game, we’d have our three main reviewers have a go at it.
Three reviewers, three opinions, one score. Let’s go!
Let’s start with our “plot” reviewer, Felix. He’s going to give us an inside of the story and the plot.
When they first announced aliens colonial marines, man my reaction was… yeah, I didn’t really care for it, in my view I had “Alien vs. Predator” and if I needed an alien game that was it, eventually it did capture my interest with its trailers and so but it wasn’t something I was really planning on buying . Thanks to World of CD keys though, I had the lovely experience of playing this game, thankfully they gave us 3 keys and I dragged Frank and Gunz into this.
Where do I even start with this… as you know, every Monday I’m doing retrospectives and currently I’m doing “Aliens” because we were going to review this game , I heard about how bad it was… but I had no idea how much this would hurt.
Not since “Resurrection” and “Prometheus” have I felt such anger at a storyline (yes I’ll get to those eventually)… So the story, right? You want to know about the story, well in “Aliens” Hicks sent out a distress call, these are the marines that answered that distress call.
The premise itself is not very good because in reality we might get them to fight some corporation guys, a few aliens and get out. But since this is colonial marines they go ahead, enter the sulaco, find a bunch of fan service, fight some aliens… wait what the hell are aliens doing in the sulaco? Seriously at no point in the movie did aliens get on the ship besides the queen but she didn’t stay there very long.
Okay… I would start counting the plot holes now but this review would be 15 pages long, so after some entertaining sections of fighting aliens and face huggers, we get introduced to the rest of the game: Welcome everyone to Colonial Duty, Weyland warfare! The evil corporation of evil things shows up looking to do some evil, and they send in some storm troopers to kill you, because you did exactly what you were supposed to do… How does this company still exist if it fights the army…?
Moving on. The ship you were in explodes and starts bringing down the sulaco with it because the corporation takes over the ships and both of them start shooting at each other which I think was called “SS Copy Paste”, so after we crash-landed on LV-426 we fight aliens and company men and aliens and company men and aliens and company men… and how the hell did they build all that in a few weeks, and why god… why are there so many aliens? It’s kind of explained that they made a hive there, why? Because there wouldn’t be aliens in “Aliens Colonial Marines”, and we already know that “Colonial Duty – Weyland Warfare” is strong with this one already!
Some people die and this one chick gets a chest burster exploding out of her which has arms. WRONG… stuff happens, you kill people, you get a marine out which was one of the original marines… one of the original marines, I mean the only possible would be like Apone or Hudson, but Hudson is dead and they never mention Apone…so who is it ? Well… I don’t want you to play this game but look it up online or something, it makes no sense and they give such an half ass explanation that it’s insulting really, it’s like: “Hey man why you are here?” “It’s a long story, let’s go kill aliens.”
So we go to kill the alien queen, collect a bunch of fan service, and go to the ship and leave… the final twist in all alien movies happens and you fight the queen in a shitty boss fight. Honestly, what killed this game for me were the characters, bishop was in character and still awesome but everyone else had no personality at all, it’s painful when we are supposed to care and there’s no reason to care, besides that there’s a thousand more plot holes hidden in this game, it’s like a whole new set of collectables, what a joy, looking back on it I can recall having fun very rarely but mostly pain… I did feel like a marine playing the game the weapons and everything is all there but I don’t know what happened… there’s is no amount of fan service that can excuse this game’s horrible story shitty ending and subpar game play…
Game over man, game over. I wanted to search the multiplayer for that authentic alien experience like I was promised, but it’s too late, everyone is gone, the community is dead, this is amazingly bad so early into release that I can’t even find enough people to make a simple match, it had potential, it really did .
Up next is Gunz’s review. He’ll be the one talking about the development of the game thorough all these years and the graphics component of the game:
Alien Colonial Marines… high expectations were given back in E3 2011, but everything changed once the game was released, all the hype was gone, the fans were mad for the plot holes (that I’m pretty sure Felix told you all about regarding that aspect) and everything behind the development of the game was revealed to the public by 3 TimeGate Studio developers.
Gearbox did in fact outsourced the game to other developers so they could focused on Borderlands 2 which has caused Colonial Marines to become this mess that I don’t know even know what to call, maybe… “Alienhole Plotnial Marines”.
So how did all of this started you ask? Let’s start from the beginning from the mouth of developers who worked on the game in the last few years:
Back in 2006 SEGA purchased the rights to make two Alien games, an RPG from Obsidian and a FPS from Gearbox who back then was known for making Brothers in Arms. It was dark times for SEGA back in 2009 and to survive that crisis they had to cancel some games and the Aliens RPG from Obsidian was one of the casualties. (No game left behind by SEGA for sure)
But let’s take our focus to Alien Colonial Marines. After the massive success of Borderlands, Gearbox decided to focus all their studio’s dev teams into Borderlands 2, leaving Colonial Marines to gather dust until November 2009 when they had the idea to outsource the game to the developer behind the Section 8 franchise, TimeGate Studios.
Gearbox had ignored Colonial Marine for years, according to three developers from TimeGate studios, Gearbox had focused the vast majority of its developer teams on Duke Nukem Forever, Borderlands and Borderlands 2, leaving Colonial Marines to gathering dust and only to get some development here and there thorough the development cycle until it was outsourced.
By the start of the 2010, the only developer studio working actively on the game was TimeGate Studios, according to the developers Gearbox and TimeGate narrative designers were rewriting the game all the damn time. There wasn’t a script for the game making the designers to throw everything they did to the recycle bin.
So what the hell happened with the E3 Demo and where is it? The demo was built by TimeGate with some animations thrown in by Gearbox, the game was running in real time at the cost of a high end computer that most of the consumer at that time couldn’t afford.
Gearbox took control of the game development in the Summer of 2012, and the first thing they did was to change everything because the game couldn’t run on a normal consumer PC or even on consoles, so what Gearbox did was to bring huge graphics and design changes to the game, making BIG changes to lighting, texture and shader complexity by narrowing it down to a level where it was playable, and at the cost of game graphics.
But now that you know what happened behind doors let’s talk a bit about how the game current situation isAlien Colonial Marines is powered by the Unreal Engine 3, although the only thing that reminds me of the engine being used here, it’s the typical engine limitations, no bullet penetration, can’t jump from the top of the fences, invisible walls near boxes and so on..
Graphically the game looks worst then Unreal Tournament 3, the character models look awful and for some characters if it wasn’t for the voice acting I wouldn’t even know it was them, the Aliens models… Jesus… AvP(Alien VS Predators) had better models and animations for the Aliens than Colonial Marines and it’s a game from 2010, this is something that me and Felix agree on without any doubt, the animations of the Aliens in Colonial Marines are just stupid and somehow kinky sometimes, from time to time you can see Aliens glitching and walking like they are Gentlemen or even not crawling and all but instead floating around the map. The game weapon models don’t look very bad; they’re actually ok although they suffer from the general graphics narrow you can really see that the models were scale down because of the rest.
The only thing that graphically the game gets well is the Atmosphere, not really in all levels but the first level and some levels in the game have a good Atmosphere, you can feel that the idea behind the game is there but it was poorly executed sometimes and other times it was perfect, the same can be said about animations we have the cutting animation which look greats but when you take a look at the walking animation or even the Aliens… you just want to vomit because it’s worse than PS2 games.
The sounds of this game are a joke, you have the typical Pulse Rifle sound from the Alien franchise that Frank here later will tell you how much he loves that sound, and you have those “pew pew pew” sounds from the guns especially with the silencers equipped, it’s just ridiculous the weapon sounds, the game for some reason when it notices that you’re getting close to a danger in the middle of the combat, either it being a human enemy or an Alien, makes that typical cliché sound of attempting to scare you, it just doesn’t work and it easily makes you piss off to have to hear it every single moment that the enemy is getting personal with you.
Colonial Marines is a mess in the technical aspect, it’s a shame because it promised so much but delivered so little that even makes me want to install AvP again just to get the taste of Colonial Marines out.
Last but not least, Frank will talk about the gameplay and the his final thoughts about this “thrilling” game:
Well, I am here to give you a brief view of this game from a casual, non-alien fan point of view. I wasn’t very interested in playing this game, but my fellow reviewers were begging me to play this game. So at first sight, the game seemed okay….the game looked decent, but as soon as the first cutscene cut in, I was already starting to be annoyed by the overly stereotypic characters and really poorly written dialogue.
Hey, this game had the atmosphere right, I was starting to get tense, and at first when they were coming from every direction, I was being entertained! The game was just starting to get mildly fun to play with my friends but then they had to insert a new type of human enemies from the Wayland company that completely KILLED the experience they were going for! You’re not shooting and surviving waves of weird-ass blood thirsty aliens, who crawl up on the ceilings and walls anymore, you’re just fighting the usual call of duty “Evil generic shooter guys” whose AI is… damnit!
I don’t know what to say… In an animation department, it’s a mixed up mess. The player is either presented with great animations on scripted events or actions, (Both in third and first person) but then we have poor walking cycles, character stances and very few alien attack animations variations.
We have gameplay similar to Call of Duty, with fast and jumpy characters all around, which doesn’t really help the atmosphere, and the in-game missions (Even on the hardest difficulty) are pretty straightforward and easy, with the exception of a single level mid-game. I must admit that, the in-game sounds weren’t very bad tough, for the famous pulse rifle sounded pretty accurate to the movies as many other ambient and creature effects and some sounds were perfectly matched to the scripted in game actions. I won’t even start on the character and tech models…the enemies looked the same and the two ships in the beginning were IDENTICAL! Yes! The same exact model! Damnit…
Frank’s personal opinion of this game:
I saw this as fun game to play with friends, I was looking for some scares and some interesting climatic moments, but i got next to nothing. My friends almost had to beg for me to play with them the final levels.
Only buy this game if you just want to laugh at how bad it is.
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