Aliens Versus Predator 2

aka: Aliens Versus Predador 2, AvP 2

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Critic Reviews add missing review

Average score: 86% (based on 59 ratings)

Player Reviews

Average score: 3.9 out of 5 (based on 85 ratings with 6 reviews)

It's like playing the Aliens movie, with a special guest star...

The Good
Dr Eisenberg's experiment is totally out of control, even though he won't admit it...
The mysterious incident no one seems to know much about had something to do with the xenomorphs, I would bet both arms on that... I mean... Pod Number 5 has been totally destroyed!! What kind of cataclism can be so powerful as to take down such a monumental structure?
And now we lost all contact with the exterior. We can't even communicate with the Primary Observation Complex...
Yes, the xenomorphs were involved somehow. We had it coming. Some things should be better left uncovered.
And now I'm definitely sure there's... something else out there.
<font color="#3366CC">The Eisenberg has stolen a number of eggs. The Eisenberg wants to make things to them. I have been born in captive. I must escape. The Eisenberg has built an artificial Hive and fooled the Mother into spawn broodlings inside it. The Eisenberg wants to capture the Mother. I must save the Mother.</font>

Here we are, once again. The dumb marines of the VERLOC, always underrated and criticized by civilians and politics, but we are the first to be called when it comes to to put off fires.
The Weyland-Yutani Corporation has problems with one of their colonies again. They lost contact, and we have to find out why. Another raid over some multi-millionaire installation that must not take any harm, which means no heavy stuff.
Again, sent to war armed with a fork.
I only hope this isn't another bug-hunt.

<font color="#006600">The prey is here. It's my chance to prove myself a worthy leader.
And there's something else too. I seem to recognize them.
Time to hunt.</font>

Aliens vs Predator is a name that speaks for itself in lenghts. The franchise is the physical manifestation of a fantasy that grew in the minds of most of us who were teenagers during the late 80's and early 90's, those nerds who argued for hours about "who would win a fight between...?"
Aliens vs Predator 2 is in general lines a great improvement over the original ALIENS VS PREDATOR. Not that the first game was bad at all (in fact it's an excellent game) but this one's much more of a cinematic adventure, with an actual story to follow, and a lot of technical enhancements.

Gameplay-wise, both games are the same: a first person shooter (FPS), with some very light adventuring to do —the pull the lever to open the door at the other end of the building kind of adventuring.

This second game is powered by the Lithtech engine, which grants a smooth and good-looking gameplay, providing you have a generous amount of RAM and a powerful video card. A graphics chip with a Z-Buffer is greatly appreciated, since the game features extremely large outdoor environments.
In this regard, the scenario graphics are amazing. Outdoor environments are not only massively huge, but also very well designed, full of life and details in their grim loneliness. Indoor scenarios are certainly something: they're perfect recreations of the buildings we've seen in the 'Aliens' movie.
Characters feature a much higher poly-count than in the first game, higher resolution textures, life-like skeletal animation, and what all not. Some particular characters we got to see in the first game will show up again, like the predalien and the praetorian alien, and they look much better and way more menacing.

Regarding the sound, we've got an immersive music score which matches the action perfectly, getting to enhance the atmosphere very nicely with its changes of pace; we've got a very acceptable voice acting which matches the game perfectly; and —above all— we've got every single one of the sounds we've heard in 'Aliens' and 'Predator' movies. The other day I watched 'Aliens' for the Nth time, and I noticed that even the noise of the doors opening and the elevators is the same.

Like it happened with its predecessor, the most interesting feature of AvsP2 is the possibility of playing three different stories: Alien, Predator, and Marine. This gives the game a lot of interest, since every character needs to be played in a very different way according to his particular abilities/limitations.
Playing as the predator is just as fun as it was in the first game. It's like the guest star of the movie, but at the same time it's the most interesting character to play. Here, it has a few new weapons and the ability to perform HUGE leaps, which sets it quite apart from being just a marine that can get invisible.
The alien —as cool as always, with its ability to walk on walls and ceilings, and feed on enemies' heads— now can pounce on an enemy from a large distance, and has one added trivia attractive: the first level we will play a facehugger in search of a victim to infest, and the second level we will play the newborn chest-burster, looking for food and safe hiding in order to get to evolve into the real thing.
The marine missions, like it also happened in the first game, are the most horror-inclined ones. In AvsP2 we have a radio through which we are in contact with the team, and even though it's not a real useful feature, it really adds to the atmosphere, specially when after a while of nothing going on, suddenly there are xenomorphs all over the place, and as we try to fight our way out, we hear our desperate comrades, the gunfights, and the aliens chilling screams. The whole lot is like playing a scene from the 'Aliens' movie. Furthermore, there are a few bonuses that every 'Aliens' fan will greatly appreciate, like the possibility of using one of those exo-skeletons that Ripley used to fight the alien queen.

The multiple-character device in AvsP2 has yet another piece of interest, since it not only involves gameplay: as the three stories are set in the same timeline, playing each character will let us watch the same story from a different perspective, so only by the time we finish the game with all three characters we'll have the whole thing figured out.
This way, even though the storyline is nothing to write home about, the way it's told really is. This is one of those games in which a smart storytelling makes interesting an otherwise rather simple storyline. Note that even though I say the story is not that great, it IS much better than in the first game, featuring a few plot twists in which, for example, the marine will have to fight other human beings as well as aliens and a predator.

To spice the game up, there are multiple winks for the player who pays attention. One of the greatest things is, there are several moments in the game in which we will meet ourselves.
For example: there's a stage in the marine missions in which we open a door and, incidentally, we release a predator who's being held captive in some sort of cryo-capsule.
At a certain point in the predator missions, we'll get setup, caught, and contained in some capsule. Upon waking up, we'll see a marine passing by and releasing us before escaping through some hole in the floor.
Playing as the alien we'll pass by some laboratories, and we'll see a captive predator being released by some dumb marine...

The Bad
In the first place, I found this game too short. I played it right after I finished DEUS EX —one of the longest experiences a person can go through- and maybe that distorted my perception of what a long game is, but I think there's definitely something wrong in the game, that left me with the impression that something was missing...
As you can guess, the marine missions end in a confrontation with the alien queen; but the thing is, it happens too soon, and it's not as... spectacular as it should be.

The atmosphere, although pretty chilly and immersive, isn't nearly as scary as it was in the first ALIENS VS PREDATOR, specially in the marine missions. Strangely, I fail to tell WHY is this, but I found lots of people saying the same thing: even though AvsP2 is technologically WAY superior to the first ALIENS VS PREDATOR, the first game was WAY more scary.

The taunts! What ever happened to the taunts? In the first game, it was quite amusing —playing as a Predator- to invisibly sneak behind a marine, suddenly yell at him, and watch him run around horrified.
Here, the taunt key doesn't do a thing!
I know, it's not a useful feature, and let alone useful, but... I want my taunts back!!

And finally, what I think is the biggest flaw of this game: there are some special effects, like the visual modes of the Predator, the marine's motion tracker, or even the blood-shot whenever we sever a head, that were MUCH BETTER done in the first game.
The marine's motion tracker is awfully designed, with some horribly silly blue colour, and it isn't nearly as useful as it was in the first game. Maybe part of the lost atmosphere I was talking about relies in the fact that the first ALIENS VS PREDATOR made us much more depending on this tool, which we needed just as badly as we got to hate, with its nerve-breaking beeping. In AvsP2, on the other hand, you can forget about it quite easily.

The Bottom Line
Aliens vs Predator 2 is a must for every 'Aliens' fan.
The first game was a really cool experience, but it was more of a typical FPS with a scary twist —granted, REALLY scary.
This game, on the other hand; is REALLY an 'Aliens' game. It IS another FPS, but it features your typical 'Aliens' plot, with all the characters and events you would expect from an 'Aliens' movie.
Plus, there's the Predator, who adds a whole new dimension to the package, specially gameplay-wise.

I'm usually a storyline-driven guy, and pretty picky about the games I like, but this (as it happens with the 'Aliens' movie) is one pure-action game which I just can't stop replaying.

Windows · by Slug Camargo (583) · 2003

An excellent action thriller!

The Good
This game is very scary. You often get trapped with aliens in total darkness with only your trusty shoulder lamp and a weapon. This game is also full of great scripted sequences. In the first level, you're walking through a base, when you suddenly see some guy in front of you die. Then you see the Predator's laser sight on the ground in front of you, moving rapidly, although you can't see the Predator. This was a really rewarding gameplay moment for me. The game has 3 species which are all very different, offering a lot of variety. Objectives are very varied, as well. The multiplayer is excellent, considering the different classes. The graphics are great, too.

The Bad
The sound is not surround sound, which would have been a great idea. The environments are repetative. The game sometimes gets frustrating and very hard. It's also very linear, but it's still easy to get lost. I noticed lots of clipping. Also, the game is too gets annoying to use your lamp all the time. And the environments are small...if you're claustrophobic, stay away from this game.

The Bottom Line
A very scary FPS that, despite some problems, is still very fun!

Windows · by Archagon (108) · 2002

If you love the FPS genre, or Aliens the film for that matter, pick this up now!

The Good
Do you remember the first time you watched Aliens? Remember when the colonial marines are just entering the colony complex, and they're splitting off into squads to scour the complex for survivors? Remember how tense you were as you tried, vainly, to spot movement in the hallways and abandoned rooms? Remember the constant beat of the motion trackers? The first human mission of Aliens Versus Predator 2 eerily recreates those moments of the film right down to the smallest detail. I couldn't believe that I was exactly getting tense playing a computer game, something that had never, ever happened to me before. When I finally spotted movement in the game, I was so charged up I fired wildly at it with my pulse rifle, decimating what turned out to be a large beetle.

To be fair, I was playing the game on the hardest difficulty setting, which doesn't allow you to save during a mission. This, combined with the game's naturally dark, humid tunnels and confined spaces, creates a truly frightening atmosphere that dares you to poke your head through that open doorway. I counted half a dozen deaths that literally made me jump in my seat. Impressive, to say the least.

AVP2 features three distinct races, each with its own weaponry, tactics and so on. This is a very nice option, and I wish more developers would exploit the potential inherent in this game design. Unlike Starcraft or Warcraft III, which feature a linear storyline that develops as you play each race, AVP2 tells the same story from the distinct perspectives of each race. Thus, each time you play the game through, you get further insights into the dark dealings of the game's doomed research complex.

The weapons are just as cool as you would expect them to be (provided you're a die-hard Aliens fan like myself). The colonial marines are the most traditional, featuring everything from small arms to heavy automatic weapons. The predator must be played more stealthily, sniping at enemies from the cover of its cloaking. The alien is a blast to play, whether you're scuttling along the floor as the facehugger or pouncing on your next meal as a full-grown xenomorph.

Everything else, from graphics to sound design, is top-notch and rivals anything being done with the Quake III engine.

The Bad
I only have one nitpicky gripe against an otherwise excellent game. You'll occasionally come across design gaffes which force you to know what the programmers were thinking in order to win. The most glaring of these comes at the end of the marine campaign, in which you are attacked by a pair of praetorian aliens while standing on a precipice with a dropship behind you. I died at least four or five times trying vainly to kill the onrushing praetorians before I learned that they were invulnerable, and that the only way to win is to jump into the dropship (which I hadn't really paid attention to since it was behind me). I hate that kind of game design, and wish that developers would design endgame segments more logically.

The Bottom Line
It's your standard FPS done right. Plus it's set in the Aliens universe, so you can't go wrong.

Windows · by Lucas Schippers (57) · 2002

Alien Movie. Predator Movie. It's all Weyland-Yutani's fault that I'm so scared!

The Good
First off let me mention that I have never played the first Aliens VS Predator game. I did however watch 4 Alien movies and 2 Predator ones... but I've never tried pursued any comic books, breakfast cereals or other spin-offs other than the movie and this game. Now, on to the review...

I basically picked this one up because it was on sale and I was in need of a FPS thrill. Well, I got it. The single player campaign opens up in three ways... a Human Marine... a hunting Predator or a ravenous Alien... each of the three choices comes with it's own plot (which intertwines and makes references with the other two plots), levels, situations and most importantly... gameplay. Playing as an Alien is completely different from a Marine. Having to rely on ammunition may be a problem for the humans, but the Predators recharge their energy.... you get the idea. I'll summarize it with this: Whomever you pick it will be COMPLETELY different than the other two...

Okay, once you start the game, you'll feel like you are in an Alien movie (specifically Aliens (2nd movie) and Alien3). The same familiar undertones are there.... a station unprepared for the Alien menace, the involvement of the Weyland-Yutani corporation, the failing machinery and equipment, the Exosuits, the large ominous looking cranes... and you'll be scared like one too. Quite simply, the action switches very quickly from "nothing happening, where are they?" to being attacked at all sides and having your heartbeat racing. Occasionally you can prepare yourself a second or two beforehand by listening to the music... but often it's quite sudden and Aliens particularly can come from any angle...

I've talked all about the Aliens so far because atmosphere-wise... this is their game. They could have left out the Predators entirely and it wouldn't have made a dent in the "feel". But they didn't... the Predators are like active killers that lurk just out of sight and hard to kill when you finally find one (by that same token, playing as a predator is usually a game of cloak and dagger... or more appropriately, spear gun). Whereas the Aliens often appear in swarms and attack hastily... the Predators are cold, calculating and just waiting to get a good shot off. And the Predators do get a some "familiar" setting (referring to the movies) a couple of times with outdoor jungle and rocky areas..

The Bad
What didn't I like about this game? Not very much. It succeeds where it is supposed to.

One complaint... while Playing as a Predator, you have three vision modes... 1 of them (Spectral) is simply too dark to navigate with and light optimization makes too many enemies transparent. As a result, simply not seeing things in time has resulted in my death more than anything else. These limitations are used to balance out the Predator (who has some great technology!)... but it's still a frustrating point

The level design is right on... however IMO there are just too many 'vertical shafts'... I think this might be a personal preference however, since I don't mind the horizontal ones and I'm pretty sure I've run into just as many of those if not more.

This is one of those games where you don't want to play in the dark, and yet at the same time... don't want any excess glare to spoil the darkness of the game and levels.

The Bottom Line
Let me tell you, I tried Unreal 2: The Awakening a few months ago... and this is a LOT more fun and well-designed. Even better it doesn't suck the life out of my videocard to do it.

But onto the real point.... If you're a fan of the Alien movies... GET THIS GAME NOW!... If you're a fan of the Predator movies... YOU PROBABLY WANT IT TOO... If you're a fan of FPS in general, this is as interesting as Half Life was... and the game itself is going to make you a little more afraid to enter dark rooms...

Windows · by Shoddyan (14569) · 2003

Overrated mediocre gameplay with some nice components.

The Good
The first AvP was great as long as you only played the demo. The whole game was too dark, difficult and repetitive and the plot... well... what plot? This is greatly improved in the sequel. The plot is sometimes illogical and ill told, and is nothing special in itself, but it has an interesting disposition in that it is told from three different angles. After having finished the excellent marine campaign you only know a little part of the whole story. In order to know get the whole picture you need to play the other parts as well. This encourages you to play on, just to find out how things go together, and what led to certain events in the previous campaigns. Very good. The graphics, although a bit aged, are quite good, and the sounds are downright excellent. The weaponry is nice and is exactly what you would want from a game like this. Cool weapons directly from the movies. I also really like the different vision modes that the predator has. They are both useful and quite cool. The marine campaign is what makes this game worth playing, though. It is unnerving and creepy to sneak around the base, knowing you'll be attacked any minute by slimy aliens. Your feel really vulnerable and every sound makes you jump. The atmosphere in this campaign is really scary and creepy.

The Bad
Well then. What didn't I like about this game? Ah, well, where to start? For starters, the game has only one good campaign, the marine campaign. The only reason for playing the other two (the alien and predator campaigns) are to find out more about the plot. The plot itself is alright, but nothing special, and the scripted sequences are badly acted and not very nicely done at all. Sometimes the story is so ill told that it is hard to understand what is going on. The only really positive thing about it is that it somehow makes you want to play on, just to find out how it all hangs together. Although the marine campaign is creepy and good, the other campaigns are boring and they aren't involving at all. The predator has some nice technology and weaponry to play with, but the missions and the predator's agenda is very hard to care about or get involved with. I don't particularly care whether the marines shoot my head off or not. I rather think I deserve it when I play as an ugly predator lobster-head whose only goal is to run around collecting skulls. Quite boring and not in any way unnerving or scary. The alien campaign is even worse. To play one of thousands of slimy, mindless aliens is just as boring as it sounds. You just run around mindlessly, get seasick from all the wall-climbing and bite peoples heads off all through the tedious missions. I cared even less than in the predator campaign and even died deliberately a few times because I was so tired of the slimy mindless monster I was playing. If the game had let you play a marine all the way through, it could have been really good. As it is, just a really small portion of the game, about a third (not even all the marine missions are good), is any fun to play. Overrated mediocre gameplay with some nice components.

The Bottom Line
Mediocre mix of two great things: Alien and Predator. Too bad that the game does not live up to the legacy of the movies. Not even close.

Windows · by Joakim Kihlman (231) · 2004

Wonderful game - Far superior than AvP1

The Good
Since I loved AvP1, I immediately looked at this in comparison. The first thing I noticed was the great new graphics engine. Next, was the differences in characters. The Marine was essentially the same, but with some better stuff. The Alien traded high-speed for a pounce, and the Predator was made a bit more even. Overall, it was great. Highly immersive and fun.

The Bad
Some parts of it got annoying, where puzzles involved jumping from ledge to ledge (some of them were hard to do)

The Bottom Line
Buy it, you won't be disappointed.

Windows · by DBad DBad (1) · 2003

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Wizo, COBRA-COBRETTI, Jeanne, Yearman, gukker, Val 50993, Riamus, Big John WV, Olli Makkonen, Picard, Patrick Bregger, lights out party, Sciere, Kabushi, Xoleras, vedder, Cantillon, Cavalary, Koroner, eradix, Scaryfun, Editor In-Chief, Parf, Thomas Helsing, CalaisianMindthief.