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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Players are Colonial Marines following orders and simply trying to survive against swarms of xenomorphs.
Positive Role Models
The players' characters are generally just expendable tools used to fend off the xenomorphs. There's very little in the way of any character development as players follow the plot points around the immoral experimentation that led to the current infestation.
Players can create their avatar from a selection of face, body, and skin types. The body types are listed as "Masculine" and "Feminine" versus simply "Male" or "Female." Also, the crew, while never fully developed as characters, still represents a small range of diversity.
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Ease of Play
The game should feel natural to shooting game fans, especially fans of third-person co-op shooters. While there's a small number of levels overall, the difficultly lies in fending off the swarms of various xenomorphs and avoiding getting overwhelmed.
Violence & Scariness
Violence is a core part of the gameplay, with players teaming up to shoot their way through waves of xenomorphs. There are splashes of acidic green blood when xenomorphs take damage and defeated enemies disappear from the screen, leaving pools of blood behind. Some blood also shows onscreen when players take damage.
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Strong profanity, such as "f--k" and "s--t" occasionally can be heard in the game's dialogue. Also, due to the online nature of the game's co-op, players can also be exposed to offensive language through the in-game party chat.
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Products & Purchases
The game's based on the popular Aliens franchise, which has seen a number of movies, books, games, and collectibles. There are plans for additional downloadable content, such as additional maps, though no microtransactions.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Aliens: Fireteam Elite is a sci-fi themed third-person shooter game available on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and Windows based computers. The game's based on the popular Aliens film and media franchise, putting players in the role of a Colonial Marine sent on a rescue mission to defend against an infestation of deadly xenomorph creatures. Violence is a core component of the game, with players using a range of military style weapons to fight the alien enemies. There's a lot of blood shown onscreen, though most of it is the acidic green blood of the xenomorphs. Parents should also be aware that, aside from the profanity that appears in the game's dialogue, players could also be exposed to offensive language through party chat options when teaming with other players in online matches.
Is It Any Good?
It was the first Alien movie that claimed "In space, no one can hear you scream," but since then, the sleek onyx murder machines have been nightmare fuel for generations of sci-fi fans. Aliens: Fireteam Elite gives players a chance to team up and take the fight straight to the xenomorphs in a squad-based shooting gallery, with swarms of the bloodthirsty creatures pouring out from every vent, cave, and other shadowy corner. The game lacks a lot of the suspenseful horror elements that the franchise has been known for, but it doesn't feel like the license has just been tacked on. The story, along with the extra bits of intel that players find along the way, weaves an interesting side chapter to the Aliens universe for fans of the films, books, and other franchise lore. Meanwhile, the action in the gameplay is strong enough to draw in gamers looking for a fun and familiar shooter.
It's hard not to compare Aliens: Fireteam Elite to games like Left 4 Dead. Both games have players make a mad dash from Point A to B, fending off waves of creatures before making a stand against one last big push against the ravenous horde. Still, as formulaic as it seems, it still works for the most part. Each class feels distinct from the others and can serve a strong role in team play, whether it's the Demolisher laying down covering fire or the Doc giving a quick stim boost to power through a fight. One frustrating thing, though, is that the game mentions five playable classes, but leaves out the fact that only four are available at the start. To use the Recon class, players must first complete all twelve chapters in the Campaign mode. The Horde mode is also locked until players complete the campaign. While it's understandable to want to reward players' efforts, this feels less like a reward and more like players are being forced into an incomplete experience. Despite this, Aliens: Fireteam Elite is still a good game to enjoy with friends looking to scratch that sci-fi shooting itch.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.