A blog about tabletop hobby and or strategy games, with a side order of electronic turn based goodness here and there. Now with tons of retro gaming content both electronic and tabletop. Also with 20% more self loathing douchebaggery!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Aliens Inspiration Part 1: Aliens vs Predator 2 on the PC!

As I have mentioned, I am going through many of my Aliens related bits of merchandise for more ideas and inspiration for the Aliens Necromunda Total Conversion project I am blogging about here.

Well, why not play the PC originals? Sadly, AvP1 does not work correctly, giving me graphical tearing and tons of other visual errors so bad as to be unplayable.

Luckily, the sequel does not suffer the same fate, and can now be enjoyed on a 24" iMac screen at 1400 by 1000 or so resolution. (It can do 1600 by x which is the max the game can display, but the framerate is a little lacking. Of course if Apple hadn't put a mediocre videocard in a 2000+ dollar computer it would have been nice. ATI must have made one hell of a deal with the land of Jobs!)

Thus yall get some screenshots and commentary on the game!

I am replaying through the Marine section of the game as its the only bit truely inspirational for the Aliens game. (Though I may be adding Predators and Terminators, and more "Expanded Universe" things once the Aliens part is complete, working, FUN, and if my players want me to.)

The game's graphics still look pretty good as you can see:

(Hey! Frack you too pal!)

Sure, they don't equal games like Monolith's (the same guys who made this game) later Condemned: Criminal Origins, but its really solid. And makes me wish they would use that engine and make another AvP title..

Sadly, the game is pretty much a massive linear crawl, with in engine cutscenes, scripted events, and the now standard papers and PDAs with more fluff to find.

(If those eggs hatch, I get a face full of Alien wing wong. My friend Mr. Shotgun will make sure that won't happen.)

(I don't see why they had such a problem with the Predalien in Requiem. I capped this one with a clip of pistol ammo. Of course its not a QUEEN Predalien, but still!)

(I think it likes me. Too bad it can't eat through the glass, and I can't destroy it. Dang 2001 FPS games!)

(I like my Xenomorphs EXTRA CRISPY!)

(The Praetorian Alien after eating a few hundred Smart Gun rounds. DEAD.)

(The Combat Power Loader in action. Rechargeable laser rifle, flamethrower, minigun, and SADAR all on one frame!)

Overall its a decent FPS with a fair enough story, and compared to Alien 3 and later films, it really doesn't stomp all over established canon. About my only fiction complaint is it taking place in the 2230s when Aliens took place in the 2170s. The tech isn't that much further advanced. Some slight modifications to the armor and a modified power loader are about it. I really doubt they would STILL be using the same weaponry 60 years later. Even in the Aliens comics technology is more advanced in 2180 compared to what they had on Acheron. The Alien acid splash is minimal, and most of the times I died was more to cheesy scripted scare attacks than anything else. No terrain damage and no squadmates to fight with kind of lessen its impact. Its one of the better Aliens games, but its not flawless by any means. It wasn't in 01 and its not now.

I also took some time out to play a little deathmatch and had some fun as the Marine, emptying Smartguns into Predators and Alien alike, along with SADARing myself when a Predator captured me in a net. You can't have my head if we both blow up at point blank range, can you?

(I had been playing the game less than 6 hours and less than an hour online and I was already in second place. For someone who isn't fond of FPS games, I am certainly not bad at them! Plus its a PC FPS and not the horribly overrated and unfun N64 Rare titles. THEY WERE NEVER GOOD PEOPLE. Mouse Keyboard, have you heard of it?)

For things to add to my Total Conversion I mostly see the Predalien which premiered in the first AvP PC game (to the best of my knowledge), the Praetorian (an evolved "Queen's Guard" warrior which showed up here in this form), and maybe the Combat Power Loader, though its bit too powerful and mostly based off one in the Dark Horse comics.

Its a fun little trip down Xenomorph Lane overall. I have one final level to finish in the Marine campaign and I can be done with it unless I want a little deathmatch. The fact there were multiple ACTIVE servers at 530AM EST shows the popularity of the game and the license.

A shame the movies can't keep up.

Expect my next entry to be more rules thoughts, or me talking about the Aliens comic books.

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