Alien: Isolation Review
So it's all settled down now. The Creative Assembly has released their game, everyone's made their verdict apart from those that are still straddling the wall unsure as to whether its worth their money. Well in many ways I think it is. First off I'm just intrigued to see if anyone else is playing this game at the moment and also what you think of it! Let me know in the comments.
At the outset of Alien: Isolation, I felt like this was the Alien game that I was waiting for. I'd watched the film again for like the 10th time the night before, I was hyped, psyched and ready to get the sh** scared out of me! And while my terror and excitement may have subsided a bit during Alien: Isolation's long campaign, I was still enjoying the impressive work that the English company The Creative Assembly gave us.
Gameplay and Story
From the beginning, I was absolutely terrified. Crawling through vents and creeping round corners, the sounds of the Sevastopol had me recoiling in fear. Gas lines blew up in front of, doors opened too quickly and the musical score drove me insane. I was totally into this game.
Alien: Isolation is absolutely stunning. There were so many times I rounded a corner and just stared at the lighting and meticulous wall design inside of this ship. It is so close to the original Alien film that it was almost too much to handle that I was finally in Ridley Scott's world. I have to commend their graphics and level design, on the PS4 this game was a beautifully crafted experience.
The gameplay was equally engaging. The Alien didn't appear for a good while and when it did, it was so unexpected and creepy that I couldn't help but replay it to watch it again. As you progress through this game, you and your tracking device become best friends. Not only does it show you where you've got to go, it roughly shows you the distance and direction of enemies in the environment. Also, the ability to shift focus from the device to the room was a lovely touch.
The androids were a pain in the ass. They slowly stalked you and chased you for ages. They were insanely creepy and terrified you when they grabbed hold of your neck. As you progressed through the game they were also very difficult to kill as you retained your desire to conserve ammunition. Though the bolt gun which you get in the final hours of the game put them down nice and easy.
This was my only criticism for this game in terms of gameplay, the weapons. The hacking system was excellent and sparsely used, the torch and wrench that open different doors at different times were well presented and evenly upgraded, just that when I got that flame-thrower, the Alien wasn't that scary anymore. You get the flame-thrower maybe halfway through the game and it renders the Alien helpless.
A few small bursts of flames and the creature runs away into a vent, leaving you free to carry on down a corridor at walking pace, running still doesn't work or he'll grab you from within the vents. For as long as I played the game I never ran out of flame-thrower fluid. Therefore, I was very effective at keeping my distance from the creature. Of course he still got me some times, but it wasn't the same as it was in the beginning. The androids became more of an annoying threat as you had to deliver several well placed bullets to their heads, as fire didn't help.
Aside from this, the campaign overstays its welcome. I mean The Creative Assembly gave us a wonderful game and they wanted us to enjoy it as long as possible, but it really felt stretched (like butter spread over too much bread...The Lord of the Rings...and Ian Holm...good tie-in...no?). If the campaign wasn't as long the game would have been a tightly wound, terrifying experience that everyone would have been raving about. Also, they should have had the flame-thrower come in later.
Aside from that, I've had great fun with Alien in survival mode and with Crew Expendable too. But will we be getting a sequel?
Alien: Isolation Sequel *SPOILERS*
So, at the end of Alien: Isolation (which is not a great ending at all I must say), Ripley is thrown out into space and just as it looks like her eyes are about to open the screen goes black. Annoying. I even waited until the end of the credits to see if they gave us a little bit more, unfortunately not. So would I want a sequel to this game?
To be honest I'm really unsure about it. The game was too long, but it was a really great experience, and perhaps this is as close a video game can get to Ridley Scott's Alien. Let's face it, maybe Alien just cannot be anymore effectively transferred over to consoles. But what I want to see is for them to give any kind of justice to Cameron's Aliens.
While not as good as the original, Aliens is one of the greatest action films and some of the best fun you can have with a film. Why haven't they been able to give us this experience on consoles? Surely more action oriented storytelling suits video games really well? Then what the hell was Aliens: Colonial Marines?! What the sequel would have to do is pick up Amanda Ripley's story and then somehow blend the elements of Alien: Isolation with Aliens. The Aliens can't be that easy to kill, they have to be scary, just not as difficult as Alien: Isolation's.
Could it be possible to make a good sequel to Alien: Isolation? I really think so! Let me know what you guys think in the comments!!