Can I get a hug?
Everyone knows Aliens. At least, most people do, and to celebrate the movie franchise, ZEN Studios has come up with three pinball tables just in time for Aliens Day (4/26). While this review is way past that date, I have been sitting down with the tables that come in the Aliens Vs. Pinball pack, and have decided that these tables make a fantastic addition to the already robust ZEN Pinball library.
The first table and really the best table in the pack is Aliens. Based around the movie of the same name, players will do missions set around scenes of the movie. Finding the Xenomorphs, using a sentry turret to keep them at bay, taking on the queen, etc. Using actual sound clips from the movie with that classic soundtrack really added a lot to this table. Yes, even the famous Bill Paxton line is in there when the “play session” is over, man. It’s a well thought out table with good lane usage and some really interesting mechanics, all the while being pretty easy to play and achieve high scores.
Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, XB1, 360, Wii U, Vita
Price I’d pay: $9.99
Second table up is Aliens Vs. Predator. Based once again around the movie that I didn’t mind but know it wasn’t the best movie featuring the extraterrestrials, players must do missions revolving around the humans and Predator as that hunt and fight off the Xenomorphs. The progression is held by how many goals the player completes. Basically, players are trying to give the Predator advantages against the Xenos. There’s a really cool mode where the table turns into Predator vision and the player must hit the ball into targets. It’s a decent table, but I felt it was standard in mechanics and overall feel with a really nice look and aesthetic.
The final, and most ambitious, table is Alien: Isolation. Here’s players must keep track of both health and ammunition, all the while trying to survive being stalked by a Xenomorph. Doing missions will upgrade the player’s arsenal and eventually lead to the coveted flamethrower. The biggest issue I had with this table wasn’t the unorthodox mechanics, but rather the mission trigger. For some reason I constantly missed the computer terminal that started missions. I don’t know if it is bad placement or if I just suck at this table, which may very well be the case, but I was really having a difficult time starting missions to progress.
All in all, Aliens Vs. Pinball is a series of well made pinball tables with some great sounds, looks, and atmosphere. While Aliens Vs. Predator is pretty standard, it has some uniqueness to it, and while Alien: Isolation has a few issues here and there, it does some really interesting and unique things I haven’t seen in a pinball table before. ZEN Pinball fans should get this pack immediately, and Alien fans will enjoy the content that is here. These are some really well made pinball tables wrapped around one of the best horror/sci-fi franchises ever created.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.