Tagged "Aliens: Colonial Marines"

Aug 26
By Matt Gander In Features No Comments

Bad games. We’ve seen plenty since this site started in 2001, but in this day and age of big budgets and high expectations they’ve started to become few and far between. Godzilla on PS4 was the most recent, and it’s fair to say that many were surprised by how awful it was. We’ve come to expect competency.

Every few years though we see the release of something that sets tongues waggling, and not for the best of reasons. Games so dated and unfinished that it’s almost a miracle they managed to end up in consumer’s hands.

Inspired by the negativity surrounding Devil’s Third – which is finally released this week after a seven year development cycle – we’ve rounded up five games that managed to escape development limbo.

Duke Nukem Forever

Duke Nukem Forever

Credit goes to Gearbox and Piranha Bytes – they managed to take something that was stuck in gaming purgatory since 1997 and turn it into an experience that was merely mediocre. Not terrible, but certainly dated. But it wasn’t just the action that felt like something from the past – many found the Duke himself a man out of time. His corny one-liners and uber-macho visage may have seemed cool in the ‘90s, but today’s gaming icons are rarely as shallow.

Boss battles, gun turret sequences, first-person platform jumping elements and a multi-player mode entitled ‘Capture the Babe’ – there’s no debating that Duke Nukem Forever was a relic from days gone by. Yet, it was playable – using the True Achievements website as a source, roughly half the people who purchased a copy finished the single-player mode.

Haven’t played it for yourself? It can usually be found for around £2-£3 these days, and it’s well worth a purchase just for the extras – there’s a timeline video showing the game in various states of development, plus trailers from iterations that were cancelled. The credit roll raises a grin too. After scrolling for what seems an eternity, Gearbox basically put their hands up and say “It’s impossible to name everybody who worked on DNF – big shout out to all the people who did”.

Aliens: Colonial Marines

Aliens Colonial Marines

Here we have Gearbox’s very own Duke Nukem Forever. After several delays and five years in development, the world was presented with something that looked incredibly different to the glitzy pre-release screenshots and even E3 gameplay footage from a year prior. Blurry textures, shoddy animation, lifeless explosions and poor lighting effects – Aliens: Colonial Marines was released in 2013 but was firmly stuck in 2008. This lead to a lawsuit against SEGA on the grounds of false advertising.

There are a few conspiracies regarding development, most of which entail Colonial Marines being placed on the backburner while Gearbox focused on Borderlands – their own IP. The rumour that holds the most water is that Gearbox simply took SEGA’s money and then paid TimeGate Studios (developers of the F.E.A.R expansion packs and first-person flop Section 8) to create the single-player mode without SEGA knowing. TimeGate then went bust, forcing Gearbox to pick up the pieces and carry on their work. This is why the “finished” version was more than a slight mess – the sight of AI teammates magically teleporting to the player’s location if they fell too far behind frankly ruined all chances of creating a tense atmosphere.

We’ve seen numerous sealed copies of Aliens: Colonial Marines in charity shops and at car boot sales over the past couple of years. It has become so notoriously rubbish that people can’t even muster up the enthusiasm to remove it from the cellophane.

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Jan 13
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

A slight shuffle has taken place in the UK chart this week, with the emphasis there on the word ‘slight’.

FIFA 14 is still on top – which makes it seven weeks, although not consecutively – and is followed by Call of Duty: Ghosts while Battlefield 4 and Assassin’s Creed IV switch places from last week. GTA V holds fast at #5.

A new supply of PlayStation 4 consoles must have made it to retail as Killzone: Shadow Fall has re-entered at #8, all the way back up from #21.

Then at #10 it’s Aliens: Colonial Marines, which probably has something to do with GAME selling it for £3 brand new.

Tesco’s recent price-cut on their Christmas sale stock – which caused HotUKDeals to descend into meltdown – is seemingly the reason as to why Dead Island: Riptide, Gears of War: Judgement and Grid 2 have re-entered the lower end of the chart.

Believe it or not, these three are reduced to a mere £3.75 each. There are also reports of older titles reduced to £1.25 nationwide.

Good luck finding copies now though – on Saturday our local Tesco was left looking like some kind of jumble sale.

Dec 17
By Matt Gander In Features No Comments

Usually our annual lookback at the worst console games of the year is in conjunction with Metacritic. As in, we use the site as a source.

But with Metacritic’s worst rated games of the year mostly consisting of PC and iOS games we’ve never even heard of, it doesn’t seem particularly right to go chopping and changing the list to suit our console-focused needs. Moreover, it’s incredibly difficult to write about something one has never played.

It has also been said that Metacritic does the industry more harm than good, so there’s that too.

Instead, here’s a list of our own choosing, all of which are games we’ve had the misfortune to play. Despite our chance of stance though, it’s not all that far off Metacritc’s list save for the omission of Die!Die!Die! on PS Vita and something called Motorbike on PlayStation 3.

Pity the person who receives one of these for Christmas.

Fast & Furious: Showdown – PS3, 360, Wii U


The main reason for movie tie-ins turning to be trash is that publishers will hand the license to whoever is willing to do the dirty work for the least amount of money.

As long as they end up with a game that can shove into a nice looking case in time for the movie’s release, publishers are quite content regardless of quality.

Firebird have at least worked on a few other racing games in the past, which would explain why Showdown more or less gets the fundamentals right. But rather than release something that’s basic yet playable, they tried to add a few little ideas into the mix and none of these really work.

It’s possible to switch between driving and shooting by the press of a button, but the rudimentary AI isn’t up to either role. If you let the AI drive during the time-trial events you’ll witness them stopping dead in front of obstructions, randomly reversing and just generally driving like they’re half asleep. All the while the clock is ticking down, until the event is eventually failed.

One rememberable mission involves transporting six boxes via an open back truck without them spilling onto the tarmac, but the physics engine is so wonky and predicable that this mission can take several attempts to complete. Then there’s the one where two vehicles have to drag a giant metal safe through a congested city. It’s brilliant idea, but it’s one that’s ruined by the fact that you also have to keep an eye on the AI car’s health. Should the they crash too many times you’re then penalised by failing the mission. Why make the player responsible for the AI’s stupidity? Why indeed.

It’s great that Firebird did try to include a degree of originality, but even so this would have far more playable had they taken the safe option and turned into a Burnout clone.

Ride to Hell: Retribution – PS3, 360, PC


It was Destructoid’s Jim Sterling who summed up Ride to Hell perfectly – “Rather than unfinished, I’d suggest the game feels barely started”.

Development began back in 2008 as a open-world game, only for it to then be put on hiatus after the studio was handed Activision’s newly acquired NASCAR license.

Skip forward to 2013 and for reasons unclear Eutechnyx decided to cobble together the work carried out on Ride to Hell all those years ago.

Chopped and changed into a linear adventure, sections clearly designed for an open-world adventure were now surrounded by invisible walls to suit the new structure. It truly is a ‘Frankenstein’s monster’ of a game, blatantly formed of whatever assets the developer could scrape together.

No matter if you’re racing, shooting or fighting other biker gangs it falls flat on all accounts – a glitch-ridden mess with absolutely nothing going for it whatsoever. To add further insult to those who mistakenly coughed up thirty quid for it, there’s a very distributing stance present against women. They’re objectified in the worst way imaginationable, frequently jumping into bed with the lead character after being rescued from the clutches of rival gangs.

You have to wonder if publisher Deep Silver knew what they’d signed up for. Plans were afoot to turn Ride to Hell into a franchise, with a spin-off XBLA motorbike racer and a mobile game once in the pipeline. Retribution’s frankly deserved reputation of being one of the worst games of all time has seemingly killed off those plans.

Good riddance. May Ride to Hell never sully the world of videogames ever again.

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Dec 16
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

Call of Duty: Ghosts is the UK’s number one for the third week running and the fifth time since launch. It was very nearly toppled by FIFA 14 however, with just 600 copies between the two.

A price drop to £22.49 at GAME has seemingly helped LEGO Marvel Super Heroes rise up from #6 to #3, while Battlefield 4 and Assassin’s Creed IV round off the top UK’s top five for this week.

As we predicted a few weeks ago, sales of the surprisingly good Need for Speed Rivals have increased during the run-up to Christmas. EA’s racer was at #11 last week but now sits at #7, whereas Gran Tursimo 6 has shifted down from #8 to #10.

Killzone: Shadow Fall has left the top 10, but it may be back next week with Sony promising more PlayStation 4 consoles available in time for Christmas.

Knack meanwhile is down from #18 to #31 and – praise be – is no longer outselling Super Mario 3D World which is at #29.

After looking like they were about to depart the top 40, the ‘big three’ Xbox One-exclusives have all risen this week – Dead Rising 3 and Forza 5 are both up a respectable #11 places while Ryse: Son of Rome is up from #34 to #30.

Finally, Aliens: Colonial Marines sneaks back into the chart at #33. You can bet your bottom dollar on this being due to GAME bundling it with Xbox 360 consoles in an attempt to shift surplus copies. It’s also £4.99 to purchase in-store. Hopefully not many people will find it stuffed in their Xmas stocking.

Jul 22
By Jake In UK Charts No Comments

It’s The Last of Us atop the UK chart for a sixth week.

Last week’s ‘big’ release, Dynasty Warriors 8 wasn’t desperately likely to depose it, but manages a very respectable #5. Nintendo will be hoping that Pikmin 3 does the deed next week.

Back to this week though, Minecraft is up a few to #2, then it’s Nintendo’s 3DS pair: Mario and Luigi: Dream Team Bros holding firm at #3, and Animal Crossing: New Leaf down a couple to #4.

Our old friend ‘retailer promotions’ means Max Payne 3 is the week’s big winner, up 19 to #7. It’s not the only big mover though. The terrible Aliens: Colonial Marines jumped 12 places to #10 last week, but this week deservedly falls back 16 places to #26. Just ahead of that at #25 is Mario Kart 7, up 15 places.

Jul 15
By Matt Gander In UK Charts 2 Comments

The Last of Us celebrates a deserved 5th week on top of the UK top 40 this week.

Nintendo has a reason for celebration too – Animal Crossing: New Leaf and new entry Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Bros. are at #2 and #3 respectively. Now that’s a dream team.

FIFA 13 and Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition finish off the top five.

There’s a slight shuffle elsewhere in the top 10 – Deadpool is down from #9 to #16 while the dismal Aliens: Colonial Marines is up from #22 to #10. Surely everybody must be aware how poor it is by now?

Speaking of poor games, Ride to Hell: Retribution is still hanging around at #37. Go away, smelly.

Namco-Bandai’s Project X Zone graced the chart at a respectable #18 last week but has seemingly now vanished into the Twilight zone. Stock shortages could be to blame – we haven’t spotted a single copy on the high street yet.

A late arrival of MotoGP 13 at #38 is the only occurrence of note.

Don’t be surprised if The Last of Us manages a 6th week at #1 – The Smurfs 2 and Dynasty Warriors 8 are the only new games arriving at retail.

Feb 25
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

For the first time in ages, this week’s UK chart has two new entries in the top two positions.

Those two are Crysis 3 – which is the new number one – and Metal Gear Rising: Revengence. Chart-Track reports that there’s a gap of 5,500 copies between them.

Although EA’s shooter and Konami’s hack and slasher sit atop the chart, neither has managed to better the launch figures for either Aliens: Colonial Marines or Dead Space 3. They’re now at #5 and #6 respectively, with Aliens: Colonial Marines’ sales down a significant 84%.

It’s a long scroll down the chart until we find the next new entry – Persona 4: Golden on PS Vita at #32.

It’s very quiet in the single format charts this week, with the only arrival of note being Dynasty Warriors 7: Empires appearing at a respectable #12 in the PlayStation 3 chart. We have to say the placing of that one has surprised us slightly.

Feb 18
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

Even with a universal mauling – expect for EGM’s rather suspicious 9.0 review – Aliens: Colonial Marines has become the UK’s new number one. Not only that, but it’s also the biggest release of the year so far.

That means that it had a better launch than EA’s Dead Space 3 and Capcom’s DmC.

We’re curious as to how long it’ll remain in the top ten. It can’t be long until the likes of CeX and GAME have pre-owned copies coming out of the God-damned walls.

Dead Space 3 drops to #2. Following behind it are FIFA 13, Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, Far Cry 3 and Assassin’s Creed 3.

Both recent Hitman titles have now left the top ten – Hitman Absolution is down from #9 to #11 while Hitman Trilogy HD goes from #5 to #14. Considering the two can already be found for £15 each, we don’t think a price cut to help Agent 47 leap back up the chart will be on the cards.

Aliens: Colonial Marines was the only new release at retail last week, and so there’s very little else of note going on in the UK top 40. We do however spy Virtua Tennis 4 taking the top spot of the PS Vita chart due to a hefty price cut, and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed taking pole position in the Wii U chart.

It’s curious to note, then, that Sega has taken the #1 slot in no less than five individual format charts this week.

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