When Alien was first released to cinemas in 1979, it became an immediate hit and developed a cult following. Three sequel films were released over the next two decades, and a prequel series began in 2012.
Alien has also been turned into a play, a web series, and 14 separate short films. A string of merchandise was also released, including action figures, comics, books, board games, clothing, and other promotional products.
Video games have been another big part of this portfolio of merchandise, with titles released after each film and during the years in between. As well as official games, the space themes that have run through the series right from the first Alien film in 1979 have provided inspiration for many other games. In the same year as Alien hit cinema screens, Asteroids was released to arcades while more recently, the Stars Invaders videogame brings the space theme to the popular online slots genre.
Here are some of the best AVP games ever released.
Alien – 1982
Alien was the first official game to be made after the film, and it was released exclusively for the Atari 2600 in North America, shortly before the video game crash of 1983. While the game has aged a lot, it deserves a place on this list for being the first and for containing some classic 1980s gaming features.
You play as a human crew member who is being chased by three aliens. Your task is to destroy “alien eggs” that have been laid in your ship’s hallways. While Alien themed, this game actually resembles Pac-Man to a shameful degree, but it’s still fun to play.
Aliens versus Predator: Extinction – 2003
Released in the summer of 2003 for PlayStation 2 and Xbox, Aliens versus Predator: Extinction is a real-time strategy game with three campaigns, one each for Alien, Predator, and the humans.
All three sides battle it out for control over the planet LV-742 and you must manage your resources to be effective in battle.
The game received mixed reviews on its release, with some as high as 7/10 and others as low as 4/10. While it was praised for its diverse mechanics it received criticism for having a short story.
Aliens versus Predator – 1999
Released for PC in 1999, Aliens versus Predator is a first-person shooter themed around the Aliens versus Predator universe. Like the Extinction game in 2003, it had three campaign modes, covering Alien, Predator and humans. Each of these has different abilities and weapons to use to attack and defend.
It’s a fast-paced game which makes it very intense, the story is also more interesting and engaging than some other games.
For a 20-year-old game, Aliens versus Predator’s graphics still look decent, and it even had lights that you could shoot out, something that was technically difficult to pull off at the time.
The game was re-released back in 2010, and can still be downloaded from Steam today.
Predator – 1987
Predator, which was released for the Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, and ZX Spectrum back in 1987 and several other devices in the following years, was the first stand-alone Predator game.
It’s a 2D side-scroller, like many of the other titles at the time. You don’t play as Predator though, instead, stepping into the shoes of Dutch. You control him as he runs through a jungle, fending off scorpions and guerillas.
Alien: Isolation – 2014
Alien: Isolation is one of the best-received games in the franchise. The PC version received an 81% score from review aggregator Metacritic, significantly higher than many other Alien games.
The game took a different approach to others in the franchise, focusing on stealth and survival instead of just being another shoot’em up title.
Instead of trying to kill the Alien, your task is to get through the levels without being attacked. The Alien is intelligent enough to follow noises and other disturbances, investigating their source.
It’s a creative and original concept that makes it one of the best AVP games ever released.