Posted 3 February

Randy Pitchford Talks Aliens: Colonial Marines Release Date, Prometheus Possibilities

The Alien films have always held enormous power over me, occupying the same sphere of significance that Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings do for many others. So it’s been with great interest and no small amount of hope that I’ve watched the development saga of Aliens: Colonial Marines. This Gearbox Software-developed first-person shooter promises to pick up where James Cameron’s 1986 classic Aliens left off — an irresistible premise for any diehard fan of the series. A recent trailer (watch it below) presented a convincing succession of sound and images, yet carried the sadface news of a new autumn 2012 release date. What’s an impatient Alien fan to do?

Well, I went to Randy Pitchford to get some answers. The gregarious CEO of Gearbox Software was all too happy to share new insights into the studio’s plans for Aliens: Colonial Marines, including multiplayer concepts, the control scheme, play style…and, perhaps most tantalizing, what he knows about the upcoming Ridley Scott-directed origin tale Prometheus.

Alien fans: Something tells me that 2012 is going to be a mighty fine year.

PlayStation.Blog: Aliens: Colonial Marines was recently confirmed to be a autumn 2012 title. How will the game’s new 2012 release date benefit the final product?

Randy Pitchford, CEO, Gearbox Software: Aliens: Colonial Marines has been a dream project – a labor of love. We’re fully committed to our vision for the game. Creating deadlines is helpful to the process, but we do regret where it creates expectations that cause us to choose between changing expectations or compromising the vision.

PSB: Are you excited to see Prometheus? Will any of the Space Jockey lore hinted at in the flm make it into Aliens: Colonial Marines?

RP: I’m very excited about Prometheus. 20th Century Fox invited us to read the script and check out production and ACM’s director, Brian Martel, had a discussion with Ridley Scott about the matter years and years ago, so it’s been a really interesting seat for us on this one. A bunch of our guys went out to read the script a while back. I chose to decline because I didn’t want the spoilers — I can’t wait to see the final film! Ridley is such a master storyteller and filmmaker and I’m thrilled that he’s spending some more time in science fiction. Oh, and I haven’t dodged your real question. Yes, ACM will bring you inside the Derelict on LV-426. I don’t want to spoil anything, so I’ll leave it at that!

PSB: Would you describe the FPS feel as grittier and more realistic, or focused on arcadier accessibility?

RP: I would say that the player’s experience for Aliens: Colonial Marines will tend closer to the gritty realism side. I say that because sometimes the gameplay footage we use for marketing will tend to focus more on the action — which is definitely in there — but you can’t really feel difficulty and challenge as well when you’re trying to promote and market the game using promotional footage.

Aliens: Colonial Marines for PS3

PSB: How are you approaching the control scheme? Does the game feature aim down the sight and a two-weapon limit? Are there any equipment slots or ways to customize your character?

RP: Looking down the sights properly is a big deal. Gearbox is really proud of its heritage in the evolution of down-the-sights views having really pushed that feature forward in the first Brothers in Arms game. Since then, every shooter we’ve created has featured direct down the sights views with ballistic weapons — including Borderlands. There are still some things we’re bouncing around between with respect to how we’re managing weapon slots and equipment with ACM, so I’ll reserve making a commitment on that right now.

Peer review and testing with customers is really important to us in the tuning process. If any of your readers are in Dallas, TX and want to be part of our user testing program, they should check out our website for more information.

Aliens: Colonial Marines - Tension Shot

PSB: Displaying the aliens themselves is a tricky balance between showing too much and showing too little. What’s your philosophy when it comes to showing them in the game?

RP: It’s been fun for us to dream up the presentations, but we’re not approaching it like no one knows what a xenomorph looks like. We do have some awesome new variants to reveal for the first time, so we try to get value out of those moments for the experience when you’re playing the game.

PSB: Finally, how important is the multiplayer experience to Aliens: Colonial Marines? Can you give us any hint as to the way it will play?

RP: Multiplayer is a big deal for us. It’s getting a huge amount of attention. I think we’ll be looking for some opportunities very soon to get some people outside of our studios, including some journalists, to have a chance to preview the multiplayer game and play a bit of it. We’re really looking forward to testing it against other eyes and getting some feedback from that, so it shouldn’t be too long before we make that happen.

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Comments

12 Comments 3 Author replies
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Will need ALOT of gameplay and great reviews before buying this. Was sooo dissapointed with the last AvP game.

    Sid Shuman 3 February, 2012 @ 9:36 pm    

    To be fair, this is a totally different development team and one that’s made some great shooters outside the Aliens series — Borderlands and Brothers in Arms being two recent examples. I’m hopeful!

ALhammadi51 3 February, 2012 @ 3:19 pm   2

interesting

 
Carnivius_Prime 3 February, 2012 @ 3:20 pm   3

On the subject of Aliens, Capcom should sort it out to get their classic Aliens Vs Predator arcade game up on the store. Would please people who’ve enjoyed the retro releases of Streets of Rage 2, X-Men, the upcoming Simpsons and Capcom’s own Final Fight. In my opinion it is still the most enjoyable scrolling beat ‘em up game of all (and while we’re at it Capcom should release their The Punisher game of the same genre and period and the two Dungeons & Dragons games, and Battle Circuit and Captain Commando, ah glory days).

    Sid Shuman 3 February, 2012 @ 9:44 pm    

    I would LOVE to play the old coin-op AvP! Freaking great game. I’m sure it’s tangled up in legal issues, though, but I’d love the see that.

 

+ 1 to respect for Carnivius_Prime

 
SickMick_UK 3 February, 2012 @ 6:51 pm   5

kivi95 AvP was made by a completely different dev (Rebellion) this one will be alot better and is made by Gearbox.

 

Looking at the E3 gameplay trailer, looked like shallow rubbish slugfest that just tries to leverage all the ‘known elements’ of the movie into the game instead of building something that actually makes sense and adds to the canon. It’s like taking a poorly written star wars novel that the only thing that makes the characters identifiable are the fact that they keep throwing ‘memorable quotes’ from the movies all the time. Plus the idiotic huge animal that chases the marines outside the door. Why!?

Just stick to the aliens themselves and build the atmosphere on creeping terror like in dead space instead of just tossing a gazillion aliens to the player (where did they come from? there’s a limited amount of people on LV-426). I’m still keeping hope that the game will improve beyond from a stupid alien trashfest it was at E3. Don’t disappoint me Gearbox.

    Sid Shuman 3 February, 2012 @ 9:45 pm    

    I’d personally love to see a slower-paced, story-driven survival-horror take on Aliens that oozes suspense. Maybe that’s just me… :)

 

This better be good. Huge fan of the Alien-series. About to get myself an Anthology Blu-ray box. Aliens: Colonial Marines better be good, you hear me? I don’t like FPS at all (not my genre) but for Aliens: Colonial Marines I’ll make an exception … If it’s good.

Ok, enough with. Just make sure it’s good and that it honours the Alien-series. Feel, experience, fear, suspense is much more importantent then just some dumb shooting.

So, last time … Aliens: Colonial Marines better be good. Now … where can I get a Collector’s Edition of the game in the Netherlands?

 
swahilikongen 4 February, 2012 @ 2:21 am   8

what the f*** how can it be every single comment I write is being deleted??? please answer me I am tired of writing the same over and over again…..

 
Marrsterhausen 4 February, 2012 @ 10:21 pm   9

Wasn’t LV246 (hadley’s Hope) destroyed in the movie? How can this be based in LV426 if it doesn’t exist anymore?

 
TheKillerSnowman 5 February, 2012 @ 1:49 pm   10

ihope it comes soon :) i have played AVP on PS3 everyday and now i need something new and i mean a new Aliens Game. canĀ“t wait :)

 
TheKillerSnowman 5 February, 2012 @ 1:53 pm   11

i love not all the aliens games only the FPS alien games.

 
jonny_hart_digit 6 February, 2012 @ 11:47 am   12

motion tracker on psv.