By Mento 13 Comments
Dear Lord I need help with these names.
People on here often wonder why the video game industry takes strides to follow and show great deference to the movie industry, despite how well the former is doing compared to the latter - though I might've wanted to wait a few weeks after Transformers 3 and Deathly Hallows Part Deux stopped making mad ducats before throwing out unfounded factoids like that. The reason for this is because video games are inspired by movies. Almost entirely, in fact.*
Occasionally a video game will base itself on the original comic or book when a movie adaptation rolls around, as if to take some manner of literary high ground, but it's only because of that movie adaptation that the game exists at all more often than not. I might one day cover video games that are only inspired by literary sources, like Legend Entertainment's Xanth or Death Gate adventure games, but that sounds both interesting and a lot of hard work - hardly germane for this blog writer guy - so instead I threw something together about games that liberally borrow from Ridley Scott's sci-fi horror masterpiece Alien, because there's a lot of those and it was easy. *Cough*.
Rules: (Because I like rules? Back latent OCD tendencies, back I say!) The game has to be set in a claustrophobic, quite filthy and run-down spaceship. With a hostile alien on board. That part's important. I'm also focusing on games that use the horror beats, without too much in the way of gun-packed action scenes (because that's more Aliens. If I did games that borrow elements from Aliens we'll be here all week.) I'm also excluding all those games which are actually based on the Alien franchise, especially those where they fight their old friends the Predator. So no predatory aliens fighting alien predators, at least no famous ones. I'm also not going to do Dead Space. That game is taking a whole different "zombies but in space" direction and attempting to distance itself from the audacious Alien parroting that the original was happy enough to embrace. In fact, I'm just going to avoid games anyone has ever heard of. How about them apples?
* For an interesting take on this, and why video game storytelling in general is still kind of jank, listen to IT Crowd/Black Books creator Graham Linehan's theory on it.
The Orion Conspiracy
The Orion Conspiracy is an adventure game from small British development studio Divide By Zero, in a time where homegrown adventure games were the exception rather than the rule (Telltale Games, Wadjet Eye Games and the many other adventure game makers of today are hardly major studios and happy to carve out their own niche on Steam and other similar venues.) Divide By Zero are also responsible for the Gene Machine and the Innocent Until Caught games, which are quite a deal better than the Orion Conspiracy. As you might surmise from that last statement, this isn't a fantastic game.