Aliens Versus Predator 2
Windows - 2001
Description of Aliens Versus Predator 2 Windows
Just what is it that marks Earth as a happy hunting ground to the Predators? These intergalactic hunters seem to spend half their lives on Earth, slashing and hacking their way through the populace at will. As if taking down a commando team and half of LA's criminal underground in the two Predator films wasn't enough, their comic-based exploits have been truly prolific. They've taken on Batman no less than three times, had a go at Tarzan, picked a fight with Judge Dredd, wiped out a Russian science station and generally got up to some serious mischief. You would think this is because humans are particularly tricky prey, but it turns out the reason they hunt us obsessively is down to the mysterious Earth markings known as the Nasca lines. When viewed from space, they read: "Come and have a go if you think you're hard enough, you dreadlocked, boot-faced sissies." It probably seemed funny at the time.
Predator vs Leatherface
But the Predators in Aliens vs Predator 2 aren't roaming around on Earth. The place they've picked for their hunt is actually a human-run research post that specialises in somewhat dodgy experiments upon Aliens, which includes a fully functioning artificial hive stuffed full of head-biting, colonist-cocooning, acid-for-blood xenomorphs. Presumably the Predators see this as an opportunity to take on two notable foes at once, collecting both human and alien trophies for their gory collections. But what they may not have banked upon is the fact that the facility itself has run into a little trouble, the aliens breaking loose of their restraints and running amok through the two sections of the large facility, the observation pods and the operations centre. Throw into the mix a bunch of marines who've turned up to deal with the alien infestation and you've got a recipe for havoc, gore and more brown trousers moments than you can shake a spear at.
As in the original Aliens vs Predator, the single-player game gives you the opportunity to play as either a Predator, marine or an Alien. But whereas the campaigns in AvP were essentially separate stories, Aliens vs Predator 2's sports a single coherent storyline, showing the same events through the eyes of different species. So in some situations, you'll hear word of what one species is up to, then get to experience it first-hand in its campaign. It's a welcome touch that makes the three campaigns tie together rather well.
As you'd expect, each of the species has very different characteristics and technology, requiring distinctly different tactics to be employed for each one. The marines, for example, are not as physically strong as the Aliens or Predators, but this doesn't mean you're going to get slaughtered the moment you step into the research complex. The marines have access to a wide range of weaponry including the pulse rifle, which you begin the game with, a shotgun, pistol and enemy tracking smart gun, all featured in the Aliens movies. Plus you get your hands on some other unseen weaponry, comprised of the usual FPS assortment: sniper rifle, rocket launcher, grenade launcher, and mini-gun.
To top it all off, additional toys are available, such as night-vision, flashlight, a hacking device and a welding torch that can be used to open certain doors or hatches (there's very little key collecting in this game), and the marine's friend, the motion tracker. The latter shows the position relative to you of any moving object (including swinging chains and doors, which increases tension by causing a few false alarms) and is invaluable in knowing when something's lurking round the corner for you, be it human, synthetic, Alien or Predator. All of the above means that the marine campaign requires you to be fleet of foot and fast of trigger finger - as in most 3D shooters.
Care Bears vs Aliens
If, on the other hand, you're more of a Thief fan or chose to root for the dreadlocked one in the two Predator movies, then the Predator campaign will probably be your first stop (although you'd be a fool not to have a crack at all three campaigns). As the Predator, you pick up various weapons as you go through the game, including a net gun, a shoulder mounted cannon, a flying disc weapon and a pistol, but you start off with only a couple at your disposal - your claws and a spear gun. However, these weapons are perfectly sufficient to take on the human foes that the first couple of levels throw at you. How so? Because your primary strength as the Predator is your stealth - your cloaking device keeps you perfectly hidden from humans and synthetics, your vision device makes your foes stand out against the background and you have a zoom facility that lets you take out targets from a distance - the disc and shoulder cannon even home in automatically, making you a formidable foe.
But there's a catch - after all, the game would get pretty dull if you were undefeatable. Actually, make that a few catches. The targeting cursor of your disc weapon and shoulder cannon can be seen by your enemies, giving them a good idea where you are. And actually firing these two weapons deactivates your cloak, as does walking through water. Also, your weapons, your cloaking device and the medi-comp device you can use to heal yourself rely on energy - you can regenerate energy by just switching to a free-energy device called an Energy Sifter which will replenish your energy meter. This device makes a hell of a noise when you use it though so any foes in the area are likely to cotton on to the fact you're there.
Additionally, when it comes to fighting Aliens, you're not so hot - they can see you cloaked or uncloaked and whereas you can deal with a few humans up close, the Aliens are far better at close range combat than you are. Combating Aliens usually involves backpedalling frantically while you're blasting away at them with your shoulder cannon.
Batman vs The Thing
The most suprising thing about the Alien campaign is that you don't start the game fully-grown - instead you begin life as a Facehugger, as depicted in the movies. With no defensive capabilities, you have to sneak your way around the corridors of the complex, climbing walls and skittering through vents till you find a lone victim to, er, hug faces with. The next level then starts with a wonderfully gruesome view from inside your victim's torso, which you gnaw and burst your way out of now in the second stage of Alien development: the Chestburster. You're quite vulnerable at this stage and can no longer crawl around walls and ceilings; again, you have to stealthily move around the complex until you find a place with fluffy animals to nourish on and grow into an Alien drone proper. Only then do you get the ability to hack and slash your opponents to pieces, pounce at them or bite their heads off and feed on their bodies to restore your own energy.
While you might think playing as a lone Alien would require huge amounts of stealth, this isn't the case. Speed and cunning is more important - the latter is required to find alternate routes round the automated sentry guns that can cut you to pieces in seconds, while the former lets you get close to your opponents and take them out, especially with no long range weapons at your disposal. A little disappointingly, enemies do tend to see you if even if you're hanging from the ceiling in a dark corner - in single player, at least. Multiplayer is a different story, since human players actually have to remember to look up.
Dagon vs Cthulu
Unlike the previous game or the Aliens movie, Aliens vs Predator 2 doesn't solely take place in the corridors of a deserted colony or an Alien hive. True, you do get to visit those locations, but you also get to wander around alien jungles as the Predator or through the corridors of the research complex and pods as all three species. The level design is pretty damn good and convincing. In fact, the game has a lot in common with the Aliens comics, which often centre around the dodgy activities of those attempting to exploit the Alien as a bio-weapon. Such attempts usually end in tears and much tearing of flesh and Aliens vs Predator 2is no different.
All of this interspecies warfare looks superb, even on a modest Geforce2 MX; turn the detail levels lower, and the game will even run at a decent framerate on lower level PCs - we reached playable speeds on a PII-466. But hey, when you're desperately backpedalling away from a horde of Aliens, you likely won't be admiring the texturing on the walls or your foes.
And believe me, you will be doing a fair bit of running in this game. Aliens vs Predator 2 has to be the scariest game I've played in ages - the programmers have gone out of their way to shock you at every opportunity. And when you're not being shocked, there's the almost unbearably enduring fear that something's about to come around the corner and take your head off. The atmosphere in Aliens vs Predator 2 is so thick, you could cut it with a chainsaw. Granted, most of the occurrences in the game are scripted and the enemy AI really does very little, but it adds tremendously to the atmosphere to be standing around a corner or crawling through a vent and hear characters nearby crying, "Oh god, oh god" when they catch sight of you. Or watch them fleeing when you release Facehugger specimens into the room - chaos has never been so enjoyable.
Dogbert Vs Snoopy
There is one area in which Aliens vs Predator 2could be improved. That area is teamwork, or more specifically, the lack of it. While it's appropriate for Predators (who usually work alone), the other species are historically prone to fighting in numbers. At least with the Alien campaign, for story reasons you start out as the only one around, and indeed, it's you who is responsible for setting the whole incident at the facility in motion. But I'd at least expect the marines to back up their operatives. Instead, you only ever see your comrades at the start of the early missions, standing by a dropship while you wander off to take on the aliens single-handedly for no explainable reason. I wouldn't expect them to survive all the way through the game, but they should at least come with you initially.
Thankfully, Aliens vs Predator 2's multiplayer mode does allow for teamwork so provided you end up in a team with people who actually feel like co-operating, you can take on your foes together. Or you can blast the hell out of everyone else in the game since Aliens vs Predator 2 sports a wide variety of multiplayer modes playable over LAN or Internet. Included are the standard deathmatch and team DM; Hunt, in which one player becomes the hunter, the other the hunted; Survivor, which is similar to Hunt but that those killed also become hunters; Overrun, in which attacking and defending teams compete to either invade or survive holed up in a complex; and finally, Evac, where the defenders have to reach an Evac Point and the attackers have to stop them getting there. And as with AVP1, all three species are available in multiplayer, each with their superbly balanced advantages and disadvantages.
One minor niggle worth mentioning is the inability to choose the order of weapons to auto-switch to, which more modern FPS' allow. This means in a heated firefight you can end up running your mini-gun dry and then getting caught in your own rocket blast.
Jason vs Rod, Jane and Freddy
After a disappointing lapse with Blood 2, Monolith appears to have more than redeemed itself with the excellent No One Lives Forever and now the hugely playable Aliens vs. Predator 2. It captures the atmosphere of the Aliens and Predator films perfectly, from the spot-on sound effects right through to the genuine feeling of actually being one of the starring species (pretentious as that may sound). The game's only real flaw is the lack of any AI teamwork scenarios in the single-player campaign, but it remains markedly better than the first game, a title that was certainly no slouch. AvP2's spookiness is so appealing and adds replay value in the same way that Half-Life was just too cool, you needed to do it all again.
If you're a fan of either of the Aliens or Predator movies, or if you're simply looking for a great, scare-your-socks-off 3D shooter to keep you busy for ages, Aliens vs Predator 2 is an absolute must have. Turn the lights down, get those headphones on, and if your heart rate doesn't increase, you might need to check that you had a pulse to begin with.
Review By GamesDomain
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Comments and reviews
BA 2018-08-30 6 points
OFFICIAL AVP2 COMMUNITY DISCORD
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WHO'S YOUR DADDY
i know what you guys are trying to do and you can forget it.
WATCHING YOU BENY lmao
BOSS IS BEST
Skillisix 2018-06-22 0 point
Says I require an AVP2.rez file and I cannot seem to find it anywhere in the download. Help please?
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