Tindalos Interactive and Focus Entertainment, in collaboration with 20th Century Games, have come together to bring the next heart-pounding installment into the Alien game franchise with Aliens: Dark Descent where players take control of a squad of space marines as they face off against Xenomorphs and other enemies as they fight for survival. Is this another bug hunt OR something else… Let’s take a look!
Aliens: Dark Descent follows the Marines of the Otago that has become stranded on the planet of Lethe. Along with the Marines is a rescued Weyland-Yutani big wig that barely escaped from the station orbiting the planet that has become overrun with Xenomorphs unfortunately for everyone on Lethe…the Xenos are on the loose there as well, along with other never before seen terrors in the Alien universe…
Now onto the game itself! Aliens: Dark Descent warns you even before playing that the game is challenging and that you really should pay attention to the tutorial, they were not kidding! The controls are quite involved but not impossible to understand. I will say though, holy hell turn off the controller vibration when you get the chance as it goes a little too crazy at times! Another thing you’ll have to tweak before you really get into the game is the sound volume, it’s insanely loud (especially if you’re wearing headphones).
Continuing on with the sound, the soundtrack sounds like it’s been ripped from the Alien(s) films and really gives you the feeling of being part of an interactive experience of the film. The voice acting is pretty good with all of the characters being voiced. The sound effects are good and bring you into the world of the game but some of the sound effects sound a bit off to me when it comes to some of the more iconic sound effects for the marine’s weapons being fired.
The gameplay of the game is kind of addictive. You have a lot of choices for the difficulty you want to play when you start off the game ranging from story to customized (where you can make some parts hard or others easy). The game really relies on you making good choices for your Marines (permadeath is real in this game!) You can avoid combat by sneaking around enemies or charging right in. By completing missions you can go back to the Otago and heal your Marines, research new weapons (upgrading weapons), and customize your squad of Marines with different classes. During missions, you can also find boxes and corpses to loot as well as datapads that can be collected.
Overall, I really enjoyed playing Aliens: Dark Descent, as a vet of the Alien(s) games this one is truly unique, especially with the tension that builds up as you carefully move your squad around on missions with the goal of bringing them home and not become Xeno chow. The story is the standard story you’ve seen in a lot of the Alien(s) games but the way it’s told this time truly makes it unique among the rest and will be loved by any true fan of the films.
On my scale of 1-10, with a story and soundtrack ripped from the films, unique play style, upgrade mechanics, and tension brought to life with the graphics and good voice acting Aliens: Dark Descent is a 10/10!
Aliens: Dark Descent is out now on PlayStations 4 and 5, Xbox One and Series X/S, and PC.