Friday, 21 Jun 2024

Aliens: Dark Descent Review

An immersive and suspenseful experience awaits in Aliens: Dark Descent, the latest game inspired by the Alien franchise. While not a survival-horror title, Dark Descent effectively captures the menacing ambiance that fans love. With solid squad management mechanics and a terrifying style, it pays homage to the source material while introducing new twists. However, some aspects of squad coordination and battles can be challenging and frustrating at times.

Unveiling the Dark Descent

Crash landing on the moon known as Lethe, players take on the roles of former Wayland-Yutani administrator Maeko Hayes and U.S. colonial Marines officer Jonas Harper. The narrative immediately plunges players into a chaotic Xenomorph outbreak, keeping them hooked with jaw-dropping moments and well-developed characters. Investing in the story pays off as Dark Descent unfolds.

Navigating the Unknown

As the leader of a squad, players venture into mission zones with clear objectives and valuable resources. The fog of war adds tension as enemies remain concealed, requiring cautious troop movement. The suspenseful exploration and zone layout elements bring back the hair-raising feeling of games like Alien: Isolation. Battles intensify the fear factor, with players facing iconic creatures such as Facehuggers and Alien Queens in real-time encounters. The ability to slow down or pause battles allows for strategic squad coordination. Xenomorph behavior stays faithful to the series, as they charge wildly and drag away soldiers. With various squad resources and loadout options, players can control the flow of combat.

A Few Hitches in the Plan

However, there are moments when squad movement feels sluggish during stealth sections with sleeping Xenomorphs. Crouching and other actions may not always respond quickly, leading to deadly encounters. Dealing with difficulty spikes, backtracking, and clunky controls can be frustrating. While the game acknowledges its challenging nature through tutorials, it requires some patience and adaptation.

Strategic Depth and Progression

Outside of combat scenarios, players experience fast-paced battles that allow for troop leveling and specialization. Similar to XCOM, role-based classes excel in different areas, such as gunnery or hacking. Each class plays a vital role in missions, with Teckers unlocking specific doors, Medics reviving teammates, and Sergeants providing stat boosts. The progression system adds depth and satisfaction to the gameplay, especially when combined with the gripping Alien storyline.

Finding Fulfillment in the Dark

Dark Descent successfully captures the essence of the Alien franchise, immersing players in its dark sci-fi environments and engaging human characters. Despite a few downsides, the game’s squad-based mechanics and experimental twists kept me engrossed until the end. The thrilling ride had its ups and downs, but the overall experience left me fulfilled and appreciative of its unique approach.

FAQs

Q: What is the gameplay style of Aliens: Dark Descent?
A: Aliens: Dark Descent is not a survival-horror game but rather a squad-based experience with a focus on strategic coordination and real-time battles.

Q: Are there stealth sections in the game?
A: Yes, the game features stealth sections where players must navigate packs of sleeping Xenomorphs. However, some players may find the squad movement during these sections to be cumbersome.

Q: Does Aliens: Dark Descent have a progression system?
A: Yes, the game incorporates a progression system similar to XCOM, allowing players to level up their troops and unlock unique skills for each class.

Q: Is Dark Descent a faithful adaptation of the Alien franchise?
A: Dark Descent successfully captures the hallmarks of the Alien franchise, from its dark sci-fi environments to the behavior of the iconic Xenomorphs.

Conclusion

Aliens: Dark Descent delivers an immersive and suspenseful gaming experience that satisfies fans of the Alien franchise. Despite some challenges with squad coordination and controls, the game’s unique twists and engaging narrative make it a thrilling ride. With its strategic depth and satisfying progression, Dark Descent is a must-play for those seeking an Alien-inspired adventure.

Aliens: Dark Descent