Scary Games Review: Alien: Isolation

A modified version of the motion tracker is used by Amanda Ripley. (Andy Lau)

A modified version of the motion tracker is used by Amanda Ripley. (Andy Lau)

Creative Assembly (developers of the Total War series) promised a return to the horror of the original Alien film with this game. Hardcore Alien fans had their hopes set high, especially after the disaster that was Colonial Marines. The result is the best Alien game ever made.

Alien: Isolation follows Amanda Ripley, daughter of Ellen Ripley, as she searches for her mother. The game takes place on the space station Sevastopol, as Ripley is on a mission to find the Nostromo’s flight recorder. The Sevastopol appears to be severely damaged as Ripley enters with her small team. They quickly become separated as the player’s journey begins.

Isolation utilizes ambient sound to capture the feeling of a derelict space station, and a minimalist HUD to draw the player in further. The Sevastopol itself can be best described as a space-labyrinth. It mostly consists of tight corridors and narrow spaces that will keep the player checking their backs constantly as things start to malfunction.

NOPE, NOPE, NOPE, NOPE. (Andy Lau)

NOPE, NOPE, NOPE, NOPE. (Andy Lau)

This game is incredibly unforgiving.  An old-school saving system, scarce ammo and intelligent enemies will lead to many, many deaths on hard mode. Players will get the living shit scared out of them as they venture through claustrophobic confines with low ammo and in dire need of medkits. To top it off, the Xenomorph’s AI is programmed to react differently to player’s actions randomly. Hiding places that worked the first time may not work again if the same area is re-played. There are also killer androids and crazy humans to worry about.

This is the game that loyal Alien fans have been craving. It captures the horror elements of the first film, rather than the action-oriented nature of James Cameron’s follow-up film.

Highly recommended, 8/10
Watch the launch trailer
Available for PC (Steam), Playstation 3, Playstation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One

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