When contact was lost with the ISRC-4 Space Research Centre, the big cheeses at the interplanetary Corps got a little bit jumpy. After all, they'd all seen Aliens at least twenty times and were starting to get an acute feeling of déjà vu. So, better safe than sorry they rerouted two of their toughest marines from their earth-
Having their voyage home interrupted to check out some stupid Research Centre did nothing for Johnson and Stone's already violent temperament, and they docked with the station in a pretty grumpy mood.
Disembarking from the shuttle they were greeted not by a gaggle of bemused scientists but by an eerie silence. They started to move into the tomb-
"Blimey, this is just like Aliens isn't it?" commented Stone.
"Yes, our current situation is rather reminiscent of that cult sci-fi thriller, directed by James Cameron of Terminator 2 fame, in which a handful of space marines investigate an abandoned colony and get eaten by slavering, bio
"Like those slavering, bio
"Yes, those are the ones," Johnson called over his shoulder as he legged it back to the shuttle, a strange smell emanating from his trouser regions.
"Thought so Urk." Sais Stone as the slavering, biomechanical creatures tucked into their dinner.
Yes, boys and girls, Alien Breed is possibly, only possibly mind you, inspired by that top movie, Aliens. It's just the vibes I'm getting from the game. It's not just that the plot's the same, or that the alien graphics look identical to H.R. Giger's Alien design, or that the front cover o the game features a drooling likeness of said Alien.
No, it's just that I'm getting these little voice in my head whispering "Aliens, Aliens" over and over again while I'm playing it. In fact, I'm going to stick my neck out and declare that Alien Breed is blatantly Alien
Not that it's a bad thing to nick the idea behind the Aliens for a game, 'cos all that skulking around and blowing smeggy aliens to pieces is bloody good fun. In fact, seeing as Activision made such a pig's ear of the official Aliens game, this could be just the ticket for all you gore-
First of all, the presentation is excellent. You get the obligatory story disk featuring some nice cartoon stills and some pulsating ray traced space ships, but this is a standalone disk and needn't be sat through every time you play the game. The story disk is good fun, but ultimately cosmetic as it tells you nothing that you couldn't read in the instructions. Nice touch though.
Once in the game proper, the emphasis is on atmosphere. The graphics are nicely detailed and recreate the claustro
Keep your eyes open for the aliens who punch through some lower levels and climb up through the floor. They may look great but they're a tad on the deadly side.
The graphics of the two marines are good as well, especially the way the blasts from their guns flickers over their faces. Rather than see the bullets fly across the screen, you just see the muzzle flash and the little explosions as the bullets hit their target. This, while only a little touch, adds a great deal to the realism and the beefy gun FX make it hard to resist bellowing lines from Aliens at the top of your voice as you rip into a corridor full of monsters.
Also included is some soft, sultry speech that calmly tells you that you're about to die or that you've run out of ammo. Add a stonking tune, and you've got a package that's more attractive than a gift wrapped Winona Ryder.
There are plenty of features to keep you busy while you try and stay alive. Each level has an objective which must be completed before you can move down to the next.
Level one is simply a case of making a dash for the lift from the shuttle, with the aliens at your heels, while level two requires you to destroy the reactor and escape before it blows.
Erm, that's as far as I can get actually, but I'm sure the other levels are just as buttock tightening. To help you in your missions you can find keys, ammo, first aid and credits lying around the corridors and every now and then you'll discover an Intex Terminal where you can log on for some info on the current level, buy new weapons and tools and even enjoy a quick game of bat and ball!
All is not roses though, as there are many hazards to avoid, as well as the aliens. One way energy doors, uneven floors that slow you down and pools of acid are just a few of them. There are also emergency doors that slam shut if their control panels are destroyed, which can be used to your advantage but can often leave you trapped.
Despite all the wonderful cosmetic bits, it's the gameplay that really shines through. Two-
If you're a thoroughly 'nice' person then you can opt to share all the collected credits, so it needn't be the one who grabs all the cash who gets the best power-ups. Strictly for wimps of course, but it does make it easier to save up for the really bitchin' weapons.
The difficulty is set just right with the first level acting as a perfect introduction to the game. The second level is a lot harder, but unlike most other games of this genre you won't care. Just playing the game is fun enough.
Firmly in the tradition of Gauntlet and Crackdown, but with the action and atmosphere of the Alien movies, Alien Breed is a game worth selling your family for. Tippex the 'Breed' bit off the box and just pretend that it is Aliens. Buy it this instant.