If you’re like me, you’ve been watching the recent Prometheus trailers over and over, pausing only to wipe the frothy spittle off your chin. If you’re really like me, you’ve also been wondering, “what’s it gonna take for some talented studio to create a killer game based on the Alien films?” Luckily, Gearbox Software is building an increasingly compelling case with Aliens: Colonial Marines, an upcoming big-budget PS3 shooter that aims to pick up where James Cameron’s seminal 1986 film Aliens left off.
While we know a good bit about the game’s tense single-player campaign, details about its multiplayer component have remained frustratingly elusive. So we took to Twitter and posed @PlayStation followers a simple question — what do you want to know about the multiplayer mode in Aliens: Colonial Marines?
We received a flood of questions — some insightful, some maniacally detail-oriented — and presented them to Gearbox Software Multiplayer Producer Chris Brock. Though Gearbox is keeping tight-lipped concerning certain specific details for the game, some of your questions did manage to penetrate their veil of secrecy with all the effectiveness of a 10mm explosive-tipped pulse rifle round. Read on to learn more, and we’ll keep our eyes peeled for more revelations during E3 2012 this June.
What different multiplayer modes will there be? And how many players are supported in multiplayer matches? (asked by @Pogo_05)
Chris Brock, Multiplayer Producer: We’ve only announced and shown Team Deathmatch at this time, but there are additional modes that we’ll be showing before too long. These modes are more objective based and we can’t wait to put them out in front of people. As far as player counts go, we’re still testing out what feels right on a per-mode basis.
How many maps are there for competitive multiplayer, and how many players does co-op support? (asked by @Nekrospike)
CB: We’re working on many multiplayer maps at the moment. We don’t have a specific number at this time but it will be a good selection of maps that will be our best! The co-op campaign will support up to four players.
Will multiplayer weapons be in-map pickups or loadouts? (asked by @LingeringRegime)
CB: Or a combination thereof, perhaps?
Will it support splitscreen on PS3? I would like to see more games having a split-screen option (asked by @TRIEDGE_68)
Will there be multiplayer maps based on other alien movies like Alien, Alien 3, and Alien Resurrection? Will the Predator make a cameo? (asked by @JDas2k)
CB: The Predator is something that you will not see in Aliens: Colonial Marines. AvP is a fun and compelling universe, but a separate one from the original Aliens universe. We draw inspiration for multiplayer maps from all the films, in addition to concept art and expanded Aliens universe content.
What’s it like to control a xenomorph in multiplayer combat? What attacks and abilities do they have?
CB: Awesome ones! Xenomorphs are obviously much more agile than their human counterparts, so they’re very quick and have the ability to maneuver about on walls and ceilings. As you’ve seen before, every part of a xenomorph is dangerous, from their claws and tails to their “little mouths” and acidic blood. They have a wide variety of ways to attack the marines.
Several other titles have enabled players to control xenomorphs. Where did those approaches fall short, and how does Aliens: Colonial Marines improve on that approach?
CB: We feel it’s key to keep the xenomorph player’s perspective in third person. Xenos have to be sneaky and agile, so the wall and ceiling climbing is a necessity. That said, playing in that style, in first person, can be quite disorienting.
Can aliens kill humans in multiple, theatrical ways? And what can a marine do in close quarters to ward off an alien attack?
CB: Xenos can kill humans in many ways. What can a marine do in close quarters to ward off an alien attack? Pray! In all seriousness, a marine’s best bet is to stay with other marines and cover each other.
Will ACM’s multiplayer include customization for the humans and aliens and, if so, what are some examples of abilities that can be enhanced for both species?
CB: We’re not talking too specifically about the metagame yet, but there’s a wide amount of customization in both appearance and abilities.
Will the game include weaponry not depicted in the films? Can weapons be modded and improved?
CB: The films allude to a lot of weapons that are never shown. As you might imagine, we’re pretty excited to show you what those might look like.