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Alien Breed 2: Assault Review
Review Score:

I wonder how many people actually remember the original Alien Breed. I do. I had a copy of it way back in the early 90′s on the Amiga along with other Team 17 classics such as Worms and Body Blows. I was 12 at the time and spent most of my time running around blowing up aliens. It didn’t matter to me what the plot was. 18 years later, I was given the chance to review the latest iteration of the series; Alien Breed 2: Assault which had moved on from its top down roots to a more 3D experience. As I waited for the game to download, i wondered if this revamp would ruin my memories of a childhood classic. I cross my fingers and pressed start.

Having missed Alien Breed: Evolution, upon selecting a new game I was greeted by a summary of what had happened previously. Whilst cruising in deep space, it seems you were involved in an intersteller fender bender with a ghost ship and set about fighting off swarms of aliens whilst attempting to start the engines and get out of there. No attempt at leaving insurance details with them by the look of it so its no wonder they are trying to kill you. I wouldn’t be happy either. It ends with you having to enter the ghost ship in an effort to save both ships from entering a planets atmosphere and burning up.

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Once into the game, getting to grips with the controls is very easy with a choice of either keyboard controls (WASD and mouse to aim) or controller. Personally I found the controller option easier to use as its controls were easier to use (Much like Geometry Wars on the 360). The only issue I had was precision aiming using an analog stick was much harder than pointing the mouse at a critter. I found myself wasting ammo with my aim off target as I was thumbing the stick at the general direction and not precisely at them, but thats my choice to use the controller. I also found that when using the controller, it was easier to remap the next weapon and item buttons to the shoulder buttons than use the d-pad as it was easier to chance weapons on the fly.

Graphically the game was surprising considering the cost of the game. Your torch shows shadows well which move around depending upon your location and the environments look dark and foreboding. Sadly some flames look a little 1 dimensional but you probably wont be looking at them much as you fight off the next wave of critters. Soundwise the game excels and I would recommend that you play in the dark with the sound up. You can hear the electrical humming, creaking steel and banging from a distance. When you fire your gun, the bullets satifactorly roar out the barrel and even ping off the walls.

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Gameplay wise, Alien Breed is a bit of a mixed bag. When fighting of waves of critters the game is a lot of fun, however once you clear those you get onto the boring part – wandering around the ship switching things on and getting doors to open. Keycards and doors are normally as far away from each other as possible meaning you spend most of your time looking around trying to find something you missed. It does feature some nice distractions like the mounted cannons which have unlimited ammo but can overheat and shutdown.

The game features a Co-Op mode entitled Assault which no matter how many times I tried it, would never find a game for me to join. It also features Survivor which pits you against increasingly harder critters to see just how long you can last. Its this mode that most made the game feel like the original to me and gives you that sense of panic when your ammo starts to run low.

For £6.99 this game is a steal, however the tedious nature of the tasks given to you drains some of the fun out of it. Given that its the 2nd part in a trilogy, im hoping that Team 17 refine the formula to make it more of an action experience and less tasked based. As for my original question on if my memories would be ruined or not, it seems that thankfully due to survivor mode that the memory remains largely intact

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Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)
Alien Breed 2: Assault Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
  • Gavinthomson

    Loved the original. Still think I have of on floppy disk somewhere.

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