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flamecondor avatar 9:23 AM on 05.24.2009  (server time)
20 Game Boy games in 20 Days* Day 15

*days may or may not be concurrent

Iíve looked at the works of the infamous LJN previously with Terminator 2. I understand they have made a fair amount of crap over the years. And while most people would of looked on the Rainbow logo as a sign of evil, I always found the games of theirs I played to be very good. I guess I am somewhat lucky I missed out on the their NES games in favor of their 16bit and Game Boy offerings. Be it their excellent SNES WWF games, Terminator 2 on the Game Boy or Spider-Man & Venom ont he SNES I enjoyed them all. Todays game is another one from the house of LJN and its easily one of their strongest offerings.

I have a history with the Alien games, if you check out a previous blog as a young child I was scared to death of the Aliens game for C64, same goes for the Aliens vs Predator games on PC (yay for little brother sneaking up on you while your playing as the Marine and the lights are turned off). I would say Iíve played most of the Alien games over the years. Alien 3 on the Game Boy however would probably be barring the excellent AvP arcade game my favorite. Alien 3 spawned a lot of games when it came out, most of them where 2d Run & Gun platformers, Alien 3 however was an Adventure game very much in the same vein as a Zelda.

So the game places you in the shoes of everyone's† fav Alien killin bad ass Ripley on stuck on the Prison planet just like in the movie. Unlike the movie however instead of just having one Alien hunting everyone through the halls of the prison there are many many Aliens. Having said that if all movie games kept to the plot of the movie then there would be a lot more boring movie video games out there. As I said the game is very Zelday. You collect various items in the game such as keycards to open locked doors or parts of Bishop so you can find where to go next. Weaponry in the game starts out really bare bones with a Cattle Prod (which I swear does sweet FA) until you find the Hand Gun and work your way up to the heavy stuff.

As with most LJN games this is hard yet not hard in a broken way like some of their NES games (Uncanny X-Men anyone?). You go through the game fighting of the usual array of Aliens starting from simple Face huggers all the way to the final showdown with the Alien Queen. Along the way you need to transverse the prison to find and kill all the Aliens so the Alien Queen will appear. Its not just the Aliens that will kill you though, I swear the most annoying thing in the game is the fans. To get from one level of the complex to the next you need to go through the the air ducts. In them there are a series of fans which must be turned off otherwise they will suck you in and instant death it is. Having said that if you know the right order to turn them off then your fine. I guess another thing that added to the hardness was lack of any save option, its not exactly a short game, maybe take you an hour or so to finish. Still at least it meant you got your monies worth as you kept replaying it to try and finish it.

Once you have killed off all the Aliens/Eggs/Face Huggers its time to face off against the Queen. I swear it took me ages to figure out how to kill her. You got to remember this is 1993 we are talking about here, there was no Internet (well not in my little country town in Australia anyway) no game mags I bought had a guide on it, I needed to figure it out on my own and it took ages. I asked a kid at school who I knew had the game and had finished it, what happened now is a lesson why you should not listen to what smart arse kids say. He told me the way to beat her was when she is on the screen, hold A, B, Start, Select. I went home and tried it, well guess who learned how to reset Game Boy games while playing them that day. But I finally figured out how to beat her and the rest as they say is history.

I don't think I really replayed it a lot when I finished it, I would have been already onto the next game and looking for the next challenge. As a kid the Aliens franchise was one of my favs, I had everything the comics, the action figures and a few games. As I said I've played most of the Alien games over the years, however this is still my fav Alien game. Its just soo different to anything the franchise has had (barring that Game Boy Color game that I havent really played). This is an example of a movie tie in game done right. Yeah it didn't stick to the movie storyline. But I really don't care, it is an awesome game and one any fan of the Aliens movies needs to check out cause quiet like the movie its based on, its soo underrated.

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