Aliens: Fireteam Elite is a three-player coop/survival game set in the Aliens universe where you play as a colonial marine tasked to investigate a distress call from the outer colonies. The campaign is divided into four missions and each mission is further split into three acts. In Aliens: Fireteam Elite you will face hordes of raging xenomorphs, engage synths with rifles, and uncover the story that started from a distress call. Aliens: Fireteam Elite is not a survival horror game, but it’s a coop-shooter to the core.
Why are there only 3 players?
My biggest issue in the game is the squad composition. Why settle with three players? One teammate has no backup. The balance is tipped especially when facing hordes of xenomorphs on higher difficulty. Bots fill up the missing roster on the lobby. But the AI needs help on the last two missions as the difficulty picks up. Unlike Left 4 Dead where you can explore the “story” on single-player (and on normal difficulty), Aliens: Fireteam Elite exposes the inadequacy of the three player squad against hordes of xenomorphs.
Steam workshop has modded bots jacked up on health. But you can’t play multiplayer with mods — which is an absolute downer for many players. The multiplayer experience on Aliens: Fireteam Elite is limited and limiting as the vanilla playthroughs can get repetitive indeed. It doesn’t when nobody is joining your lobby too.
Weapon Mods and Upgrades
Players can purchase weapon mods on the UAS Endeavor with credits earned on missions (along with EXP points). Some mods extend clip capacity, increase damage, or improve accuracy. Players will also find new weapons in hidden caches.
On-board the UAS Endeavor
Away from missions, you can explore much of the game’s lore by talking to NPCs aboard this colonial marine ship. Learning about the story is a little bland since NPC’s dialogue don’t have any animation. The ship acts as your decorated lobby before matchmaking. It’s where you’ll decide on what to do next such as choosing the next mission, changing your loadout, or browsing your challenge cards – to optimize EXP gain per run.
The Thrilling Firefight
The firefight is the game’s spotlight as the mayhem can escalate fast. You’ll be running and gunning, shooting xenomorphs or synths, and also watching synths battle xenomorphs. The combat can get wild indeed. The dodge mechanic works, so you’ll often see your teammates dodging like crazy. But movement can get clunky with the necessary action prompts to properly jumping over barriers. Unlike other shooters where you can jump over obstacles freely (with a spacebar), your character has to interact with the propped obstacle. Thus your movement is hampered during a rush of xenos.
Aliens: Fireteam Elite is a replayable game as each successful mission earns you credits and EXP to level your class and deck your loadout. Whether you are enticed to go for another round on the same mission is another topic. Each playthrough feels like a chore fast. This is why the game needs more content. I did notice that the game has now gone to the DLC design whereas you’re buying skins for your weapons and character — I’m a little underwhelmed by this.
Personally, once I completed the game, it’s difficult to compel myself to re-play Aliens: Fireteam Elite. The game did not meet my hype expectations as I bought it on launch. If the game aims to be different, having three players on a squad is NOT the game changing mechanic. Instead Aliens: Fireteam Elite feels like a standard coop shooter that plays with chaos and mayhem without the fourth player. Wait for Aliens: Fireteam Elite to be on sale — but if you’re looking for survival horror, skip this. Alien: Isolation is still the best Alien horror game. Aliens: Fireteam Elite is a shooter.