ANALYSIS: Alien Isolation for Nintendo Switch

Some years have passed since Creative Assembly surprised us with Alien Isolation, a title that finally captured the essence of the Alien franchise and made us tremble with fear in front of the screen, looking around every corner in fear of meeting the xenomorph that is chasing us throughout the adventure.

Now at the end of 2019 a version of Nintendo Switch has just come out. Anyone could think that they have opted for the easiest and that it is simply a port to get our money. If you think that you are wrong because the Switch version surpasses in many respects the Playstation 4 and the Xbox One.

Feral Interactive have been responsible for this version for Switch. A few weeks ago an analysis was published in Digital Foundry praising the features of this new version for consoles of the game. In short, thanks to antialiasing the Switch image is higher quality, less saw teeth, cleaner and higher quality. Ok, the versions of its older sisters have a fixed resolution of 1080 but the Switch’s is dynamic, it stays at 30fps and can be controlled with the gyroscope. At the option level, the option to disable image noise and chromatic aberration is appreciated.

There is a negative point and it is that due to the vertical synchronization a little delay has been added in the response of the controls. Luckily we are not facing a shooter and the style of the game makes this not very important and we get used to it quickly. Graphic options such as shadow details or the lack of motion blur have also been sacrificed.

What we can tell you is that on television it looks great but on the portable screen it is a real joy to be able to play it in the dark, from bed and with headphones. Whether you have not played the original or want to try the portable version, we recommend buying it this Christmas.

Once we have talked about the benefits of the Switch version, we leave you with the analysis of the original game that we already published in SamaGame when the game went on sale:

The survival horror genre is one of our favorites because it combines having a hard time (which always works well in small doses) with strategy and dexterity. From the english Creative Assembly We have a game for lovers of retro, for lovers of suffering and for lovers of one of the most acclaimed science fiction-horror films.

In Alien Isolation we will get into the shoes of Amanda ripley, the daughter of Lieutenant Ripley. As we will remember well (and if you do not remember, we will tell you, we have seen the movies again to speak properly) Lieutenant Ripley and the rest of the Nostromo crew receive a “pleasant visit” and little is known about what has happened. Amanda, as a good daughter that she is, is not resigned to giving up her mother and decides to go looking for her. Upon receiving an offer to embark on a mission that could help her achieve it, without too much hesitation she sets out in search of her beloved lost progenitor (something like Marco, but with a space monkey instead of an Amedio monkey).

We will be good and we will not reveal more details of the plot but let’s say alone, which comes to be alone, not going to thisr. In Alien Isolation, we will not have a second off and we will explain all the details you need to know. So you don’t say that we don’t take care of you.

ORIGINALITY

It takes a bit of innovation with this spacecraft thing, that’s true. Confined spaces, beings that they don’t want you to be there and a more or less heroic mission to accomplish before they kill you. In addition, Alien Isolation is based on a “cushion” of fans of the saga who know the history and the environment, so they cannot start inventing because they would be thrown on them.

The guys at Creative Assembly have done something very smart which has been to create the game that they would want to play And you can see it. Aside from the enemy that gives the game its name, you have many other dangers waiting for you in the dark, some that clearly have little regard for you and others that will try to deceive you.

Playability

In terms of game mechanics, the controls are clear and intuitive, the orders make sense and you don’t have to be remembering seven hundred impossible combos. You have an inventory, some stocks and, from there, you are looking for your life. The theme of creating elements is simple, but depending on what object you want to create, very “craftsman”. The method of advancing is the most logical: you start with little more than the suit and you use your intelligence to improve your (low) possibilities of survival. You have no weapons to use (we assure you that in more than one scare you will miss Isaac Clarke’s blessed plasma cutter from the Dead Space saga) and everything is quite rudimentary.

It’s a realistic game: they kill you with one shot and a good host too. Don’t expect to be tough as superheroines. Amanda is pretty scared to death and doesn’t do kamikaze antics (at least not if she wants to survive) because she knows her chances of doing well will go up if no one notices her presence.

Do not make noise, do not touch what you should not touch and remember that the game is smart and if you repeat the same thing too many times, you will end up getting caught. Create distractions and don’t lose your temper.

OTHERS

As in any survival horror or game of being in tension in general, the soundtrack is very important. From a certain point in the game, it takes a leading role as it helps keep your nervousness level from going down and you don’t trust yourself. You hear constant noises, noises that do not always mean attacks, but that, precisely for that reason, always have you in tension.