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"Making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil."

~Ephesians 5:16

Monday, August 18, 2014

Aliens: Colonial Marines Review

Aliens: Colonial Marines has one of the most infamous reputations in modern gaming. Apparently it had been in development for 5 years, and when it finally came out it garnered MASSIVELY negative reviews. So disappointed were people that SEGA was actually sued for what was claimed to be "false advertisement." The company lost the lawsuit(!) and literally apologized for the product. How sad is that? Now you can buy the game for less than $10 on Amazon. Colonial Marines is definitely not a great game, especially in comparison with other similar titles. (Resistance: Fall of Man which came out seven years prior is a far superior experience.) Still it isn't absolutely terrible and actually pretty fun. It is however not the ideal Alien experience. (Hopefully Isolation will fulfill that.)

You and your friends against the deadliest killers in the galaxy. Another glorious day in the corps. Buckle up, soldier! Welcome to Aliens: Colonial Marines. Created by Gearbox, the critically acclaimed and fan-favorite developers of Borderlands and Brothers In Arms, this first-person shooter is steeped in the eerie, claustrophobic and terrifying atmosphere that made the Aliens films successful worldwide. You and your friends will become the most bad*** military outfit in the galaxy - the US Colonial Marines. It's down to you to not just survive but wipe out the Xeno infestation.

The back of the cover claims the game will have you "Fight the fear." The problem is that there's very little fear to be fought. For some odd reason the game almost always warns you ahead of time that there's danger coming. Using that takes away the horror element, which the movies are famous for. (Another reason why games like Resistance are better.) There are a couple of instances when the game doesn't warn you, and those are very well-done. It's a shame the rest ends up being pretty much just an arcade shoot em' up.

The gameplay is pretty straightforward. Over the course you gain access to quite a few different type of guns, an impressive selection. There's one level where you're on your own with no firearms. It's decently well-done, though could have benefited if the player was forced hide rather than simply walk past the Xenomorphs. What's most impressive about the game is the play time. There's 11 missions which might not seem like much, but each takes about 20 minutes, sometimes longer. We're looking at a 10 hour game, which is pretty solid. It's a shame the story isn't that interesting due to poorly developed characters...

The game has a few main characters, but sadly by the end I had a hard remembering almost any of their names. They are poorly developed and it's hard to feel sad when one gets destroyed by a Chestburster since they don't leave any kind of impact on the player. While the story isn't all that great, it has an impressive Alien Queen sequence. Now that was horrific watching her escape her prison and killing all the marines. Unfortunately the final boss fight against her is extremely disappointing. It's one of the worst final boss fights in recent history. You don't actually fight her, and it's over in under four minutes.

Overall, Colonial Marines is definitely disappointing as the next big Aliens experience. It has very little to no horror, and the story is disappointing due to massively underwhelming characters. For under $10 now however, you do get an impressively long campaign with plenty of fun to be had shooting Xenomorphs. For $60 upon release however, it's hard to find any good things to say about it.



  1. Wait Destroyer, if each level is only around 20 minutes, then we're looking at more of a 4 hour game. How does this stretch to 10? Even if each level was an hour, it would barely be over 10....>___>

    Aside from that, I'll admit that the review did confuse me a bit. The whole review was mostly positive. You mentioned how it was underwhelming, but you even mention in the final sentences how the campaign is impressively long and that the gameplay was fun. This sounds like more of a 6 than a 4. Well....I'm sure that Isolation will be better than this one.

    1. A lot of the levels are about 20 to 30 minutes, but some missions are about 40 to 50 minutes. There's about an hour worth of cutscenes too. On average it's an 8 to 10 hour game depending on how fast the player is. If it wasn't $60, then that would be a 6. Sadly the game just isn't that great for $60. But for $10, it's definitely worth a pickup.