Why Xenomorphs and Taco Bell Go Together So Well

WARNING: The following post has graphic content (of the urban dictionary variety).alien-isolation-screenshots-7-alien-isolation-tips-to-help-you-survive-the-xenomorph

So, I was with a friend and we had some time to kill, so I suggested “hey, let’s go to Taco Bell. It’s been a few years, and I haven’t had their shitty imitation Mexican in a while”. Sure, he hesitated, but eventually I swayed him to just go with it. Point is, afterward I had to go to the bathroom. So, my friend says, “dude just go to the bathroom here then we’ll leave for the movie”. I gave him a two minute monologue about why I was not stepping my foot in a Taco Bell bathroom.

See, besides the Miami Heat logo being a visual analogy for what goes on in those bathrooms, a far more sinister theory arose in my mind as I was trying to explain to him the horrors that would await me in there. I explained to him that if I sat down on one of those God-forsaken toilets, a xenomorph mouth (the one inside the regular mouth) would come out of the little hole in the toilet and toss my salad. Just, picture that for a moment, I implore you. So, after planting that idea in his mind, I started rambling about how Alien: Isolation actually just took place entirely inside of a Taco Bell bathroom, and how the entire thing was just about Amanda Ripley looking for the door handle to escape the whole time (I mean, both Taco Bell toilets and Sevastopol station have horrid lighting, so…). When I was in the moment giving this glorious speech, it sounded a lot wittier, but the basic idea was still worth sharing here, I felt.

Gamerrob’s Top 5 Games of 2014

While it’s been a pretty bad year for games overall, a few quality titles did manage to slip through the cracks. So, let’s see what five games I found to be the most enjoyable from the lacking selection pool of this year’s releases.

Honorable Mention – Valiant Hearts: The Great War – PC

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For all the shit Ubisoft pulled this year, the release of Valiant Hearts was a breath of fresh air. It’s using the same gorgeous engine that the recent Rayman games used, which means it also has an amazing art style. While it’s weak by gameplay standards, it has a good story with a good message.

5.) Murdered: Soul Suspect – PC

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If you wanna talk about underrated and unappreciated games, look no further than Murdered: Soul Suspect. The game sold so poorly that Airtight Games went out of business after developing it, for crying out loud. Not to mention that critically it did poorly thanks to mainstream media shitting on anything that’s different. In short, it is an awesome point and click murder mystery game with a good plot, fun enough gameplay, wonderful graphics and a chilling atmosphere.

4.) Ryse: Son of Rome – PC (it’s a 2014 release for PC so it counts)

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I can understand why some wouldn’t like Ryse, considering almost the entire game consists of the same under-baked combat from start to finish. But what I think some are overlooking is the fact that the core combat is fun, and that doesn’t change no matter how much you play it. Couple that with a VERY cool campaign with lots of awesome set-pieces (think God of War but mildly more realistic) and an extremely addicting cooperative arena mode, and Ryse is a game that allows for some of the best mindless fun of 2014. Not to mention you can wear the Crysis nanosuit in multiplayer.

3.) Bayonetta 2 – Wii U

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While Ryse was more of a guilty pleasure of hack ‘n slashes, Bayonetta 2 is the supreme leader of the genre. Featuring one of the most intricate combat systems in modern gaming, a wealth of content and an over-the-top universe to be absorbed in, Bayonetta 2 is the absolute pinnacle of button mashers. Whether you want quirky Japanese story telling, precision combat or a masterful mix of both, this is the sequel for you.

2.) Titanfall – PC

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Titanfall was 2014’s comet of gaming: it shined so bright for so brief a time span. A mere two months after it launched the community was on life support, but for those two months it was the absolute acme of online first-person-shooter fun. The movement felt fantastic, the guns were satisfying and the titans were glorious fun. While it might be too late to enjoy this game for yourself considering how hard it will be to find a match, just know that it was definitely worthy of all the hype it generated.

1.) Alien: Isolation – PC

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If there is one game that oozes quality, hard work and love this year, it’s Alien: Isolation. Every single minute of the game is packed with tension, agony and everything that made the original movie so engrossing. Every mechanic within the game is fully explored and gives the player a wide range of options to use against a downright genius AI, and the atmosphere is second to none coupled with the best graphics and best sound design of 2014. Alien: Isolation is a technical masterpiece and a trophy as to what can be accomplished when you give the right team the right source material.

Alien: Isolation First Impressions

Having only experienced two hours of Alien: Isolation with no plans to rush through it, I feel that now is the opportune time to give my early opinions on it while they’re still relevant.
alien-isolation-screenshots-7-alien-isolation-tips-to-help-you-survive-the-xenomorphAlien: Isolation does something that no other horror game does, making you feel both safe and completely exposed simultaneously. The feeling of safety comes from the rock solid controls and overall mechanics of the game, making you feel secure in your movements and actions. On the other hand, the nerve-wracking exposed-feeling is almost always around because there’s a Xenomorph on your trail for a good chunk of the game. But you’ve heard this all in the pre-release press blurbs and advertising stuff, so I’m here to say a few things that haven’t already been hammered to death via gaming website propaganda.

One moment early on in the game (forty minutes in or so), you’re traveling with a companion, who, during a cut-scene, gets impaled by the Alien’s tail. This is pretty standard fair, as in horror games almost always the protagonist’s companion gets killed at some point. So, after that boring intro-to-the-alien cut-scene, you are then tasked with running to a shuttle transport. Obviously, now that you know the Alien is lurking around things are more tense, especially with the added dramatic piano tremors. But what made me nearly piss myself is the fact that if, when the train pulls into the station, you wait more than five seconds to move to the next area, the Alien will come charging towards you (and you have nowhere to run at that point so…). That is an optional scare, the scariest kind of all. Most will go through the game and never experience that, being all the happier for it. The fact that during the cliche hunter introduction sequence you actually run the risk of being hunted against all video game norms makes Alien: Isolation a bundle of surprises. alien_isolation_6-100371845-origEven standard encounters with the Alien are near-piss inducing, as when you see him carving up humans on the other side of the room and you realize the only way to advance is by going over there and accessing an elevator out in the open, it’s one of the most heart-thump inducing experiences in gaming. Overall, if I wrack up the courage to play more than the two-plus hours of Alien: Isolation that I soldiered through, I have no doubt that the game will give me more memorable moments to shit myself over. And in that respect, I can already name it the best horror game I’ve ever played. No cliches, no safe assumptions, just one intimidating AI Alien with no rules.