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Aliens: Infestation is a 2D sidescroller game for the Nintendo DS handheld console. It was developed by WayForward Technologies and Gearbox Software. It is a tie-in to the Alien franchise. The cover art as well as the character designs and avatars were drawn by renowned comic-book artist Chris Bachalo.
Gameplay of Aliens: Infestation is comparable to the Metroid and Castlevania video games, where players are encouraged to search and backtrack for weapons, upgrades, and keys. The player controls one of a party of four marines and explores the U.S.S. Sulaco as well as LV-426 and Phobos in order to investigate the Union of Progressive Peoples (UPP) and Weyland-Yutani's involvement in Xenomorph development. The game incorporates a permadeath mechanic. If a marine falls in battle, another in the party will take their place. The player loses if the entire party is wiped out. Fallen characters can be replaced with any of fifteen displaced marines found throughout the game, each with their own unique dialog.
The USS Sephora has discovered the USS Sulaco adrift in space after the events of Aliens and Alien 3. The Colonial Marines are sent aboard the Sulaco to investigate and recover the life form detected aboard the ship.
Aliens: Infestation was developed by WayForward Technologies and Gearbox Software and was originally intended to be a tie-in to the PC and console Aliens: Colonial Marines game. When doing their research, Game Director, Adam Tierney, focused heavily on Ridley Scott's Alien and James Cameron's Aliens as inspiration. To capture the films' slasher appeal, while still keeping you emotionally invested, the development team created 20 unique characters, with the game's dialogue carefully re-written 20 times, to make sure it offered the biggest 'gut-punch' when one dies. In conjunction with the game's 'party of four' mechanic, the developers wanted players to grow attached to their favorites, which in-turn, increased the likelihood of getting one killed.
The A.V. Club gave it a B+, saying, "It's a shame that Aliens: Infestation peters out by the end. In the push toward the conclusion, the upgraded weapons you've collected lessen the threat, and the thin plot culminates in a boring fight against a big alien queen." Digital Spy gave it four stars out of five, saying, "In many ways, it feels like the Aliens game we should have been given back in the 16-bit era when the movie series was still relatively new. Whether it has been worth the wait is debatable, but this is certainly a worthy addition to the DS library." However, The Digital Fix gave it seven out of ten, saying that "It can be uneven at times in terms of quality but it is highly enjoyable, especially if you are fan of either the franchise or even if you are just a fan of 'MetroidVania' games."
- Tierney, Adam (2018). "A Profound Waste of Time". A Profound Waste of Time. p. 19.
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