Publisher: Team17 Software
Developer: Team17 Software
ESRB rating: Teen
Release date: Available now
First and foremost, I have never played either of the previous titles in the Alien Breed series on Xbox Live Arcade, but the idea of blasting hostile alien monsters with guns is a genre that always sings to me as a gamer. Is that enough for this game? It only took me to play the third and final installment, Alien Breed 3: Descent by Team17 Software, to get a good idea about what this game has to offer.
You play as Conrad who is having a really bad day. He is a Chief Engineer that is trying to survive on a ship, the Leopold, which is slowly crashing into a planet. To make things worse, there is a crazy AI program that is trying to stop him. And on top of that, deadly aliens want to rip him to shreds. You have to fight through this mess, guns blasting at everything that moves, if you have any hope of survival.
Alien Breed 3: Descent is a top-down sci-fi shooter. In the story mode, you navigate through the crashing ship, activating various modules in order to advance through the levels of countless aliens. Weapons like a machine gun, shotgun, or grenades are at your disposal to clear a path, with more powerful weapons available later in the game. Throughout the environment are objects you can loot, to acquire credits, ammo, and health packs. You can then use the looted credits to upgrade weapons into more powerful killing machines. The title also includes free play and survivor modes. Free play is a mode where you can jump right into any of the levels in any order. Survivor mode, which speaks for itself, is where the player must survive waves of aliens with no limit on weaponry. There is also a co-op feature where you can hop on with a friend via Xbox Live or local multiplayer.
The game looks fantastic! The 3D surroundings and use of Conrad’s flashlight was amazing. It had great contrast with the surrounding environments as you ventured throughout the landscape. The overall look of the game really impressed me because it had a great use of depth. Sadly, this is the only good thing to really come out of this game.
Looking amazing doesn’t save Alien Breed 3: Descent. The story mode gameplay gets very old and boring after a short time. Shooting some aliens, come to a blocked path, backtrack to a computer or valve that you passed earlier, activate the computer or valve, go back to the now passable previously block path that the computer or valve opened, come across a save spot, save, and repeat. Survivor mode falls flat because it should be fun because of your unlimited cache of weapons to gun down enemies, but it just wasn’t. Even when the game throws you into a boss battle it just makes you cringe because they remain lackluster.
Alien Breed 3: Descent has a great look, but that is all that it has going for it. The story is boring with repetitive gameplay, and that is a combo that you never want to come across. If you are a top-down shooter fanatic and have a buddy who is also a top-down shooter then try this game. For everyone else, my best advice would be to just avoid it entirely and spend your hard earned points on something else.