My Favourite Underrated Games – Part 3

Alien: Isolation

Generally speaking, gamers are a finicky bunch and difficult to please, even when a darn good game stares them in the face. Both Days Gone and Mad Max have been described as boring by some players, which begs the question, were they playing the same games as me? Other criticisms are that there’s too much grinding (collecting items for inventory, etc), it’s a poor storyline, not enough weapons, yada, yada. But very rarely do you hear a criticism that the game is too scary. This is what happened to Alien: Isolation, the third game in my underrated games saga.

Completely panned by IGN and GameSpot for being repetitive and IGN even states, if you’re looking for the perfect Alien game, this isn’t it. And GameSpot states that the game contains too many old and predictable game cliches and also that the game is not much of a looker. Another reviewer, Worth A Buy, takes issue with the fact that the alien doesn’t appear until a couple of hours into the game, prompting him to ask, where the feck is it? Hellooooo?? Have you seen the first Alien film, Mr Worth A Buy? It doesn’t actually appear until nearly halfway through the film because the whole idea is to build up the tension, which is the same level of tension that the game builds up. Well anyway, as you can see, reviews are entirely subjective, but one can’t help deducing that many reviews are way off the mark.

Alien: Isolation Is The Scariest Game I’ve Ever played!

I don’t even like survival horror games, so Lord knows why I play them. I can just about get through Resident Evil games because zombies are everywhere nowadays. But this game is in a league of its own because, as I’ve just mentioned, Big Al doesn’t make an appearance until several levels into the game. However, when you first start the game, you don’t know that and so he/it could be lurking anywhere. In my case, I spent a great deal of time hiding under desks and inside lockers, even though I couldn’t hear the alien and so this is how the tension is ramped up right from the start.

In terms of video games adapted from films, Alien: Isolation is a modern-day masterpiece. The attention to detail in how the ship resembles Ridley Scott’s original creation is simply stunning, a labour of love no less, because clearly the developers, Creative Assembly, are huge fans of the original film. But for most followers of this game, it’s the pacing that really makes you sweat and sends chills down your spine. You hear the alien’s footsteps above and below you or in the next room, but you can’t see it and you ask, where the heck is it? as your heart rate goes off the chart. You can’t kill it, but you do have a flame thrower that will momentarily stun the beast until you have time to run like hell and find a hiding place.

The motion tracker, although very useful, emits loud beeps which can’t be turned off and since the alien is attracted by sound (much like zombies are), I used it sparingly. Big Al isn’t scripted either, so its movements around the ship appear random, but in reality, it’s following you through air ducts, passageways, and corridors. The entire Alien: Isolation experience is one of constant terror because you simply don’t know where it is and if it can hear you, it will find you! This makes the Synthetics (androids) and human enemies seem like children’s toys by comparison.


As far as I’m concerned, Alien: Isolation is the definitive Alien game. Lovingly created with terabytes of material supplied by Twentieth Century Fox, with exceptional music and audio design, all of which draw you into the game like no other I have ever played.

But will I play it again? If you can drag my trembling and pathetic body from under the desk, maybe.

  1. My Favourite Underrated Games – Part 1
  2. My Favourite Underrated Games – Part 2
  3. My Favourite Underrated Games – Part 3 ⬅ You are here

2 thoughts on “My Favourite Underrated Games – Part 3”

  1. This one is in my library and has been for a few years although I didnt know it until I looked at PlayNite and there it was. I see there are a lot of addons for the game, is there any you recommend Marc?

    1. Hello Alan
      I picked up the season pass and all the other DLCs when they were going cheap. but be warned that the season pass doesn’t include all the extra story missions.
      To be honest, it’s so long since I played the game, I would only suggest that you finish the main story first and even though there’s no Game+ (with all your weapons and collectables), you can dip back into chapters.
      I may try out the DLCs again, if I can just peek out over the desk!

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