How Aliens: Colonial Marines Will Marry Alien’s Suspense To Aliens’ Action

How Aliens: Colonial Marines Will Marry Alien’s Suspense To Aliens’ Action

Aliens: Colonial Marines will be an Aliens experience in three acts, an interactive exploration of the story that follows Alien 3, which promises to delve into both the horror and the action of the storied franchise.

That’s a tall order, but Gearbox Studio’s president Randy Pitchford says his team is up for it. Pitchford’s knowledge, respect and understanding of the series is hopeful.

After a 30 minute presentation of the game, the two of us chat about our young memories of that first movie – that very first chestburst.

Like Pitchford, I was about nine when the movie came out and seeing that movie scarred me. It left me so traumatised that knowing that that moment existed in the movie made subsequent viewings of the film almost impossible for me. The anticipation was too much.

Pitchford tells me he had a very similar experience. It is a movie, he says, that has been shaping the games he makes for decades.

“This franchise has affected us all,” he said.

During the demonstration of the game, Pitchford said that his game is meant to be a true sequel to Aliens – even though it actually takes place after the events of Alien 3 – because the game is about a squad of Marines with lots of equipment and bad-ass, powerful tools fighting against hordes of xenomorphs. But later he says that the game is really going to bridge the gap not just between stories, but between the feel of the movies.

“James Cameron’s take was to raise the stakes a lot,” he says, speaking of 1986’s Aliens movie. “He amplified the action by increasing the number of protagonists and making exponential the number of antagonists.” Many Marines versus a swarm of aliens.

“The third film tried to get back to the feel of the original film,” he said, speaking of David Fincher’s Alien 3. “The neat thing about video games is that they’re a lot longer than just 90 minutes. We can play with all of these things. We can play with survival horror; we can get into squad-based action.”

Will there be unexpected, shocking moments of horror in the game like the iconic alien bursting from a chest in the first movie?

“There will be several moments like that,” Pitchford said. “Of course we’re all expecting the chest bursting, we have to treat it in a way that is clever. We need to get into the mind of the spectrum of the audience which includes people who have seen moments like that before and people who haven’t.”


    • and there was nothing wrong with the singleplayer of AvP 2010. all complaints were on the multiplayer side and the fact that it was COD

      • I’ve never played the multi because the single player campaign was so awful. General lack of visual detail, crappy jump scares, checkpoint saves, boring set-pieces, odd feeling weapons, awful health system, pulling the player out of the levels and giving them ratings like an arcade game… oh yeah, no crouch! This is just the Marine campaign. The others had their own unique ‘features’.

        AVP2 on the Lithtech Engine was better in every way and THAT was crappy compared to the first one.

  • To stay true to the feel of “Aliens” the cooperative sections need to greatly outweigh the solo parts.

    My biggest problem with the last few AVP games: “Hey there FNG, power’s gone out in this spooky labyrinth-esque substation and we’ve decided – yes, yet again – to send you in alone. And don’t worry, we’re quite sure xenomorphs won’t unexpectedly appear as soon as you hit the switch this time. Run along now.”

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