E3 2011: Aliens: Colonial Marines Demo Preview

Now you can live the adventures of a space marine. Mostly.

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Aliens: Colonial Marines is the upcoming Sega-published game based on the Hollywood blockbuster franchise, and we got our first taste from a live demo played by a Gearbox representative. The journey began inside a damaged marine ship that was plummeting down toward the nearby planet. The cruiser's fiery metal battered and detonated the settlement below.

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When the ashen dust from the wrecked ship settled, the perspective was from the eyes of a surviving soldier. The player was disorientated, and his CO roused the hero to his feet. The commander was thanked by the player's quick flip of the bird, and the soldiers jotted off. It was soon discovered that their crashed ship had just obliterated Hadley's Hope, the prime location of the second movie. The sundered colony made full use of the game's Red Ring engine, easily rendering creepy lighting and shadows touted as influenced by Dead Space.

The main character whipped out his handheld radar scanner and soon found several blips dashing toward the unit from the west. Naturally, the creatures were the titular Xenomorph aliens. One of them darted through the broken airshafts, wiggled out the other end, and snatched up an unlucky marine. It was time for our protagonist to get out of this sticky situation fast. Luckily, a good amount of regenerating health helped with the survival rate. However, the run-of-the-mill bugs weren't the only breed of aliens about.

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A much larger ferocious and huge bull alien was among the pack. Its head was large and patterned similar to a queen's, but it was also extremely well armored. No amount of simple Weyland-Yutani bullets would penetrate shielding that tough. The marine didn't delay and quickly dashed into a well-reinforced building and behind an enforced blast door. He traveled down the path and met with several more of his military chums. However, there was something special about one of them.

Aliens: Colonial Marines features drop-in and drop-out cooperative play for up to four players. A member of the new squad wasn't just some artificial scum, but another real-life player. He didn't have special markings or a name above his head, making it difficult to remember he was really human controlled. Together, the players set up a perimeter defense of auto gun sentries that mowed down the hordes of aliens. However, there were too many beasts.

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Even with the help of friend, the Xenomorphs proved to be far more than any mere mortal could handle. In what appeared to be a scripted event, the old buddy armor-head big alien smashed down the walls Kool-Aid-man style and darted for the first player. The bug then grabbed the soldier and devoured him, and the demo ended.

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