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"We get to shut the book, Ripley."
Samuels
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Alien: Isolation is a first-person Sci-Fi Survival Horror game based on the Alien franchise, developed by Creative Assembly, published by Sega and released October 7, 2014.

Set 15 years after the events of the original film, the game follows Amanda Ripley, the daughter of Nostromo warrant officer Ellen Ripley. Amanda has been searching for answers ever since her mother disappeared on a voyage aboard the Nostromo, and has joined the Weyland-Yutani Corporation as an engineer.

Provided with a lead that the Nostromo's flight recorder was recently discovered on the fringes of the frontier, Amanda heads to the space station Sevastopol to seek answers, only to discover that a lot of really bad shit has occurred - namely a lone Xenomorph, which has massacred the station's inhabitants and is now pursuing her, is loose. Armed only with a handful of devices and her wits, it's up to Amanda to outwit her pursuer and discover the truth about what happened to her mother.

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The game takes cues from other first-person Survival Horror games like Amnesia: The Dark Descent and Outlast, and features hide-and-seek gameplay where Amanda is forced to use different tactics to outwit and avoid the Xenomorph stalking her through Sevastopol, while the Xenomorph will adapt to the player's avoidance patterns and tailor its searching appropriately.

On February 28, 2019, Fox released Alien: Isolation - The Digital Series through IGN as part of a 40th Anniversary of the franchise. The series is a retelling of the events of the game built around the game's cutscenes, and some occasional bits of gameplay. The series is made up of seven shorts that transfer the most important events in the game's (mostly) first-person narrative into a (mostly) third-person cinematic experience, and the episodes collectively add a new sequence to the narrative not seen in the game. It can be viewed here or here.

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Received a direct sequel in 2019 in Alien Blackout, a mobile game more in the style of Five Nights at Freddy's.

Beware of Late Arrival Spoilers for the original film.


This game contains examples of:

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     A-M 
  • Abandoned Hospital: The San Cristobal Medical Facility, which occupies a large portion of Sevastopol's Sci/Med Tower. It had been evacuated and cordoned off before Amanda arrives because that is where "Patient Zero" was taken, and Waits was trying to keep it covered up to prevent a station-wide panic.
  • Abandoned Laboratory: Gemini Exoplanet Solutions, Seegson subsidiary that specializes in analyzing new worlds and deriving solutions to colonization problems. They maintain a laboratory facility on the station complete with a detachable observation module that can descend to planets for first-hand testing. It was shut down before the incident on the station happened, so the area is relatively clear of human occupation. This becomes the Disc-One Final Dungeon when Amanda tries to lure the creature into the detachable module to eject it from the station.
  • Ability Required to Proceed: Lots of obstacles stand in Amanda's path, but she can overcome them with the right tools. There's a maintenance jack for removing physical locks from doors, a security bypass tuner for overcoming electric locks, a gas torch for cutting through plating, and a gas mask for accessing rooms filled with poisonous gas. The tuner and torch have two additional upgrades for more secure barriers.
  • AcCENT upon the Wrong SylLABle: Everyone pronounces the name of the San Cristobal Medical Facility as "CRISS-toe-ball" rather than the proper Spanish "criss-TOE-ball". It's also supposed to be spelled with an accent over the O: Cristóbal. Likewise, everyone pronounces Sevastopol as "Suh-VAH-stuh-pol", instead of the proper Slavic "Seh-va-STO-pul".
  • Achievement Mockery: The "100 Times Too Many" achievement/trophy, which requires you to have died a whopping 100 times in order to get it.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • After the Badass Decay the xenomorphs underwent in nearly every installment after the original Alien (with the exception of Alien³), the return of the original Death Incarnate might come across as this. Similar to Alien and Alien 3, Amanda doesn't have access to effective weapons because Sevastopol is a civilian station, so the weapons on board would be tailored to deal with soft, fleshy humans (revolver bullets and buckshot), not the hardened plating of a xenomorph. Compare that to the pulse rifles that carve a swath through xenomorphs: They fire 10mm steel jacketed, explosive-tipped bullets.
      • Even then, it is only startled by pipebomb explosions going off at its feet and shrugs off the bolt gun, which can one shot a Working Joe.
    • Amanda herself. In the films, she is only known to the audience as an innocent 11 year old girl and an elderly 66 year old woman who dies of natural causes. Here she's a capable and resourceful action hero to easily rival (or even outstrip) her mother.
  • Adaptation Distillation: The Digital Series boils down most of the key sequences into a feature-length experience.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The Digital Series adds Ripley's narration to her story, along with a Frame Story of her recounting the events that led to her escape from the Sevastopol and an explanation as to explain how help arrived to save her.
  • A House Divided: There are three main (human) factions, each of whom contributed to the disaster in some way: the Marshalls (who kept quiet about the Alien until it was too late), Seegson Security (who have formed their own gang and have taken to shooting civilians) and the random gangs of paranoiacs or looters you come across. None of the factions will consider working with each other, and two of the three are hostile towards the player.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot:
    • The Working Joes/Seegson androids found throughout the station are significantly less advanced than Weyland-Yutani synthetics like Ash, Bishop, or David. Their skin is clearly some form of rubber, they're completely hairless, and they have glowing eyes. They also possess a primitive A.I. that makes them only suitable for simple tasks, and require coordination and input from a much larger central intelligence. Their lack of sophistication not only makes them unsettling, but also results in them ignoring the crisis aboard the station and attempting to kill trespassing humans.
    • APOLLO, the station's controlling A.I., has locked down all vital systems and seems to be actively trying to get everybody on board killed. It's later revealed that Weyland-Yutani had ordered to it to protect the Xenomorph at all costs, even if it has to kill the occupants of the station, in a clear Call-Back to the original film.
  • Air-Vent Passageway:
    • A favored tactic of the Xenomorph, much like the films. It traverses the station through ceiling-mounted vents which the player cannot access.
    • Amanda can also use air vents to navigate the station quickly. Some are in the walls and some run underneath the floors, and they can provide alternative paths as well as secondary access to certain rooms. Note that while Amanda can't use the Xenomorph's vents, it can most definitely access hers. While the Xenomorph can simply crawl into a vent from outside like Amanda can, some of the vents inside the walls and underneath the floors are directly connected to the ceiling vents. Either way, don't be surprised to see it crawl in there after you if you make too much noise.
    • Oddly enough, some of the vent openings have markings that indicate that they are part of the emergency evacuation routes, which would explain the convenient ladders you find in them.
  • All for Nothing:
    • Amanda can save as many survivors she can or spare the hoodlums but no matter what, they will be killed either by the Synthetics, the Aliens or when the space station is destroyed.
    • All of the traps that Waits set to lock down or kill the Xenomorph, and the effort Ripley and Ricardo go through luring it into them. They fail because everyone wrongly assumed that there was only one alien on Sevastopol.
  • The All-Seeing A.I.: Per word of the dev team, the Xenomorph's A.I. is split into two different levels: the Alien itself has its own tree of choices it can choose from depending on a very specific variety of circumstances, and overseeing it is a "director" A.I. that knows everything you do in the game and constantly communicates with the Alien. But to keep the game from becoming unfair, the directing A.I. won't flat out tell the Alien where you are, but drop hints for it as to where you might be or are. On top of that, to keep a situation from constantly being unwinnable, the A.I. will intentionally redirect the Alien elsewhere. All of these are to help give the illusion that the Alien is a learning, thinking creature.
  • All Webbed Up: The creature's abduction victims which were taken to the hive under the main reactor. Later happens to Amanda herself after getting knocked out. Fortunately, she wakes up and escapes.
  • Alternate Continuity: The "Crew Expendable" DLC tells a "what if?" scenario where Parker or Ellen could go into the vents instead of Dallas to draw the Xenomorph into the airlock (which is based on a Deleted Scene from the original film where they tried to enact the same plan and are sabotaged by Ash).
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different:
    • The pre-order missions "Lone Survivor" and "Crew Expendable" happen during the original Alien movie. Bonus points for using the original movie cast to provide the character voices.
    • You take control of Marlow during a playable flashback detailing the Anesidora crew's discovery of the derelict ship that the Nostromo crew originally found.
    • You take control of Ransome, Dr. Lingard, Hughes, Axel, and Ricardo in various DLC survivor mode scenarios; all of them have their own equipment loadouts and suit different playstyles.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • All Archive Logs, Nostromo Logs and ID Tags are permanently added to your inventory upon collecting, even if you start a new game or restart from a previous save, saving a player from having to collect them all over again. However, archive logs containing mission-critical passwords still need to be read by Amanda in-game and not from your inventory in order to keep the game's scripting from breaking—otherwise, the passcode panels straight up wont let you use them at all.
    • You have the option to turn down the difficulty in the game's menu you find it too hard. The game will also remind you that you can do this if you keep getting stuck in a particularly tough spot.
    • Unlike its movie counterparts, this Alien has a very audible Ominous Walk and makes a distinct loud noise whenever it emerges from a ceiling vent. Scary as hell but key to determining if the creature is in the vents or on the floor.
    • Looking at the map pauses the game. This is the only interface that does so; everything else (such as reading station emails, managing your inventory, etc.) is done in real time. And while the game never tells you this, a player can quickly switch through weapons on the fly by using the d-pad instead of pausing, but specific items still require using the inventory menu.
    • The alien bleeds when shot, and its blood, while acidic – you can see steam coming off it –, won't damage you if you get hit by it. (Of course, if you're close enough to the alien to get hit by its blood....)
    • It's possible to save while an enemy is nearby, but if you accidentally save in a bad spot (i.e. the Xenomorph or a Working Joe is too close by) the game gives you the option of either loading at a previous save spot or loading a save that lets you start back at the beginning of the current mission so you're not hardlocked in an unwinnable situation. The save points also notify you when highlighted if there are hostiles in the area, giving you more of an opportunity to decide if you should really save right now or not.
    • If you do manage to save without interruptions from an enemy tailing you, reloading that save can also cause the nearby enemies to respawn somewhere else and have their aggression dropped. This ensures that at least, the player doesn't have to worry about anything else the moment they reload a save file.
    • To keep the "One Shot" achievement/trophy (where the player has to beat the entire game without dying) even remotely reasonable to complete, the game won't count a death if you decide to restart from a previous mission save, meaning a player can restart from there and not trigger the event flag that turns off the achievement, thus still giving them a fighting chance at getting it without having to restart the entire game. On top of that, it can be earned on any difficulty, including Novice Mode.
    • If you miss a blueprint for crafting gear, you can find copies in later levels. This is especially important for the pipe bomb and molotov cocktail, the two most effective weapons in the game, since their first blueprints are in the hardest two levels of the game and are extremely easy to miss for players too busy watching out for the Xenomorph to notice.
    • In the room adjacent to the Synthetic Showroom area, where you're forced to fight multiple Working Joes at once, you find access to several EMP Mines, revolver and shotgun rounds, Molotovs and medkits with no strings attached, and even fiery gas exhausts you can activate at the entrance the Joes enter. All of this to ensure that you at least have a fighting chance against them and can recuperate afterward, especially on the higher difficulties, where it's all but guaranteed you'll be low on supplies at that point. Even Nightmare Mode is generous enough to do this, as the situation would be downright unwinnable otherwise due to the dearth of supplies in that whole mode.
    • Averted with the tools you acquire, especially the Ion Torch. All of them have start and stop animations where you lose control of Amanda. If there is an enemy lurking nearby when you try to use them, especially the alien, you can expect to die one or two times while trying to stop what you're doing so you can run away.
    • The Alien will not "learn" from events leading directly to your death, as it would otherwise gain too much of an advantage, as playtesters found out the hard way. The games directing A.I. is also designed in a way that, depending on the circumstances the player is stuck in with the Xenomorph, it will intentionally misdirect the Xenomorph elsewhere so as to keep the player from winding up cornered for too long or stuck in an unwinnable scenario.
    • Chapter 6 concludes with Amanda escaping a room slowly filling with toxic gas that drains her health. To ensure players don't die during this segment, there's a medkit on the ground right at the beginning.
    • There are a select few sequences where the player can't access savepoints for story-related reasons, so the game uses checkpoints instead to keep the player from redoing too much if they die.
    • To ensure a player doesnt wind up in an Unwinnable situation if they run into a Facehugger (which are a small target that will kill you on contact) and is unlucky enough to not have any ammo for weapons on hand, the player can still kill them with a well timed swing from the Maintenance Jack (which comes with the very convienient bonus of not attracting attention to its death with loud sound like using a gun or flamethrower does). The only trade off is that doing this always causes some damage to be inflicted on Ripley from the Facehuggers acid blood splattering, so its strongly advised that you have a medkit to fall back on for these kind of desperate situations. And even on Nightmare Mode, the game also includes just enough Flamethrower fuel scattered in areas with Facehuggers to ensure you have a fair fighting chance against them and cant risk taking heavy damage from their blood.
    • The game has an unseen tension meter built into the gameplay, which determines how scared Amanda is supposed to be at the moment. If the meter ratchets up too high for too long (such as in a situation with the Xenomorph cornering you without actually finding you), the game's directing A.I. will misdirect it away to keep the player from getting bored while also keeping them from getting softlocked into an unbeatable situation.
  • Anti-Hoarding: There's a limit to how much crafting materials of a given type can you carry at once. Fortunately, you can free up space by allocating them to an item's blueprint.
  • Apocalyptic Log:
    • The game opens with the final log entry of Ellen Ripley before she goes into hypersleep at the end of the original film.
    • Amanda can uncover audio logs left behind by station crew and emails sent across the station intranet to give her some idea of what went on there.
  • Arc Words: "Perhaps they'll be some closure for you."/"I wanted Amanda Ripley to have closure"/"Leave Ripley out of this, she's just looking for closure."
  • Artificial Brilliance: The Xenomorph's AI is truly something to behold. It is almost 100% unpredictable, can pop up at anytime, anywhere and puts on a constant cat-and-mouse game. Even more impressive is that it learns as the game goes on, adapting to the player's tactics allowing it to remain constantly dangerous. Making noise is the worst thing one can do, as it will pick up on anything from a gunshot to the beeping of the motion tracker. Use a certain type of hiding space too many times and it will start searching those hiding spaces more carefully. After being fooled too many times by flares, it will begin ignoring them completely. Even with the flamethrower, the best weapon in the game at warding it off, it will learn the range and force players to waste fuel before it leaves. According to Word of God, the Alien isn't so much learning the player's moves, but instead "unlocking" features that are triggered by either the actions of the player, or the script. So while the Alien technically doesn't learn, it does mean the Alien improves its hunting skills. Crucially, it will also unlock new search behaviours at fixed points in the game if it hasn't already unlocked them to ensure that a crafty or unpredictable player doesn't run rings around it for the whole game.
  • Artificial Stupidity:
    • Human enemies are surprisingly vulnerable to the old "let them chase you around a corner then bash them in the head with a wrench as soon as they come around" trick. You can take out an entire roomful of hostile humans in this manner, who are not at all deterred by the pile of bodies at that corner. Adding to it is that human enemies will often run around during combat, which alerts the Alien as well.
    • On lower difficulties (anything other than Hard), enemies (both humans and the Alien) can sometimes fail to see you even if you're in plain sight a few feet in front of them, and will casually stroll right past you. This doesn't happen a lot, but it does happen often enough to be noticeable.
    • The Working Joes, but in their case the stupidity is justified as being due to their having crude artificial intelligence In-Universe. For example, Amanda can get around them by getting their attention, letting them follow her in a wide circle, and then running past the spot they were supposed to be guarding. They are much easier to trick compared to the humans and the Alien, simply because the Joes don't run at all.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Early on, the easiest way to kill Working Joes is by shooting multiple times in the head with the revolver. Attempting to hit a Working Joe with a maintenance jack will only result in them blocking your blows, though sneaking up on them will allow you to get a few hits in. Later on, you get access to a shotgun and the bolt gun, which will kill them in one hit to the head. They're also the only enemies vulnerable to the EMP mine, which you can craft later on in the game.
  • Awesome, yet Impractical:
    • The Pipe Bomb. Its great for clearing out large groups of enemies and kills anything outside of Hazmat Joes and the Alien in one hit. The downside is that it requires a huge amount of parts to assemble, forcing a player to use it with discretion (especially on Nightmare Mode, where parts are so scarce that building even one Pipe Bomb is a challenge in itself) and it has the unfortunate side effect of drawing the Alien's attention upon detonation. Also, it can easily kill you by accident if you're too close by where you threw it.
    • The Bolt Gun. It is a deadly weapon that can oneshot both variants of a Working Joe if you aim it well enough on the head, but it's also slow to charge up and reload, it can only fire one shot at a time, and ammo for it is very scarce.
  • Backtracking: For most of the early-game, you can come across a lot of locked doors with a gameplay note hinting at required tools to open them. The game's story is mostly structured to have you deliberately backtrack to previously-visited areas but with a new tool in hand. Some locked doors are merely optional and it's up to the player's discretion to open them or not. Backtracking does help you collect more logs, blueprints and IDs, but it also presents the risk of being stalked again by enemies.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: There's actually a surprisingly large amount of major antagonists outside the Alien, but absolutely none of them are working together and their goals eventually entail screwing each other over as well as everyone else.
    • Weyland-Yutani, as always, is the Greater-Scope Villain, with APOLLO, the station's controlling A.I., as their chief representative.
    • Marshal Waits, despite his best intentions, ultimately made the situation aboard the station much, much worse. Covering up the Alien's existence to prevent panic and use of extreme measures to kill it led to a complete breakdown of civil order aboard Sevastopol. He does eventually help Ripley eliminate the threat by jettisoning her off the station along with the Alien.
    • Ransome, the smarmy Seegson executive in charge of the station. His cost-cutting measures (which were meant to make himself look good to his superiors) contributed to the further decline of Sevastopol Station into a decrepit mess, as well as for the hasty development of the severely flawed Working Joe androids. As he became more aware of the situation aboard the station, he attempted to profit from the situation. Ransome however, is a minor villain, as he never poses a direct threat to the player. Furthermore, most of his story is only revealed in logs and audio recordings.
    • Of course, in the end, the primary antagonist, and the ultimate threat, remains the Alien. Absolutely everyone else is little more than a minor threat when compared to the Nigh Invulnerable death monster. Its very existence aboard the station is the driving force for the plot. Even though it is defeated halfway into the game, its influence is still felt, as APOLLO orders a massacre of all inhabitants on the station on orders from Weyland-Yutani. Prior to its demise, it has also transformed the station's reactor into a breeding ground for Facehuggers. The bad news is that there is more than one Alien already on-board, and the reactor/nest's explosion sent multiple of them wandering the station. The game appropriately ends with Ripley being confronted with yet another Alien as she returns to her ship.
  • Big "NO!": Ripley has a good one when she sees Taylor die.
  • Bilingual Bonus: There are signs all over the station in English and Japanese. While they mostly say what you think they do, mostly, the ones reading "Sevastopol" don't reflect the way it's normally transliterated as based on the anglicised pronunciation "suh-VAS-tuh-pol," but rather is based on the original Slavic pronunciation of the name, which is more like "seh-vus-TOE-pul."
  • Bittersweet Ending: Ripley succeeds in wiping out an incredibly serious infestation of Xenomorphs and prevents Weyland-Yutani from acquiring the creature, but in the process every single person on Sevastopol station dies, and Amanda jettisons herself and the last remaining Xenomorph into space. The only thing that prevents this from being a full-on downer ending is her rescue in the Post-Credits sequence. But on the other hand, she's still unable to find out what happened to her mother, and if the movie Aliens is anything to go by, she'll likely never see her again.
  • Blatant Lies: A Sevastolink message contains information that the Working Joe display models have not been formatted and won't activate on their own. Oh really?
  • Booby Trap: You can set your consumable devices down so that they'll trigger when someone else steps near them. It's very satisfying to set, say, a Molotov a few steps before one of the few scripted incidences of the alien appearing from nowhere and chasing you occur.
  • Bowdlerize: The DLC expansion game "Last Survivor", which lets you play as Ripley in an adaptation of the original movie's climax, provides a minor yet notable example; a popular fan theory about Lambert's death in Alien is that the Alien... violated her before killing her - this is fueled due to how Ripley finds her body; we only see a close up of her bare legs, dripping with blood. There is no such scene in "Last Survivor" when you find Parker and Lambert after the Xenomorph has gotten to them; Lambert, or at least what's left of her still has her pants on.
  • Boring, but Practical: All of the weapons and tools are designed to be this in order to fit the stealth-based gameplay and survival horror tone, as absolutely none of them are game changers—each one has a major weakness and can cause just as many problems as they can solve. But even among them, the Maintenance Jack is probably the most mundane of all the tools you acquire. It's a glorified wrench. While not an ideal tool for combat, it is very handy for opening locked doors, bashing a stunned Working Joe into submission, or smacking a hard surface with it to lure the Alien towards a pesky group of hostile paranoics blocking your path.
  • Breather Episode: The game does a pretty good job of pacing things out, both gameplay and story wise; often the intense levels where you're constantly stalked by the Alien - and get more of the background of what happened to the space station - are followed by more relaxed levels where you're exploring/solving puzzles with the occasional encounter with humans or Working Joes.
    • After the two incredibly exhausting medical bay levels (the first levels where you actually face off against the Alien for extended periods of time and where you find the body of Marlow's wife), Seegson Synthetics is a walk in the park. Just don't run, avoid the humans who get picked off early anyway and check your map and you likely won't die once. Likewise, unlike the hospital, this level has little pertaining to the plot.
    • After the Xenomorph is launched from the station, you don't have to worry about it showing up and just have to deal with other survivors and Working Joes until you finally get to APOLLO where it redirects you to the Alien hive underneath the reactor.
  • Call-Back:
    • Axel (the first civilian Amanda meets on the station) has a death scene which calls back several movies all at once. The original film is evoked by the setting (an engine room in an out of the way location), the second film for how the alien kills him (tail speared through his torso exactly like what happened to Bishop, except here he isn't ripped in half), and the third for the manner in which he recognizes the alien's presence (hears noises from above and slowly looks up just in time to be killed).
    • The flashback to the Anesidora crew's discovery of the derelict is one for the same sequence in the original movie. The story beats are even the same, from the glimpse of the derelict in the distance, to the discovery of the Space Jockey, to the eggs in the lower level and a member of the crew triggering one of the eggs and getting facehugged when they go in for a closer look.
    • Likewise, the sequence where Amanda accesses APOLLO to attempt to shut down its security protocols is framed exactly like the scene where Ellen accesses MOTHER in the original, to the point that they both have a similar reveal - Weyland-Yutani is attempting to harness the Xenomorph for their own ends, and regards the human crew as both expendable and a potential liability.
    • In Seegson synthetics, you can find a person who was killed by having a magazine shoved down their throat by one of the killer androids, much like how Ash tried to kill Ripley in the movie.
    • Some of the Working Joes run in place, much like Ash did in the first film.
    • The controls for activating the emergency release on the maintenance rig look exactly like Nostromo's self-destruct controls, even though there's no In-Universe reason why they should.
  • Call-Forward: Waits' plan to trap the creature by building a cage around it is similar to Ripley's plan in Alien³. It works as well here as it does in the movie
  • Camp Unsafe Isn't Safe Anymore / Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • In the second hospital level, after retrieving the trauma kit, Samuels will grimly warn you that gunshots may have attracted the creature to your area. The problem is, the creature has been one step behind Amanda the previous two levels. There’s even a good chance, it’s in the room with her as Samuels tells her this making his warning sound rather obvious.
    • This actually happens a fair bit. Characters, either over the radio or in a cut scene, will warn that the creature is in the area and this is treated as a grave revelation. In-game, the creature is never more than a few rooms away from the player.
  • Cap: You can only hold a maximum of 100 Scraps, with the game preventing you from picking up more scraps until you can bring that number down.
  • Cassette Futurism: Done deliberately as part of its Zeerust Canon, mimicking the original films' '70s/'80s vision of the future. As Yahtzee points out, the game wouldn't work in this day and age because the file Amamda goes to retreive could just have been e-mailed to her if Alien had been made after the 90s.
  • Casting Gag: William Hope is fighting one of the Aliens again... as the highest ranking authority figure of dubious competence. His presence is one of the few elements of Aliens to show up in a game otherwise based exclusively on the first movie.
  • Charged Attack: The Bolt Gun's firing mechanism has to be held down and charged for every shot, unlike the other conventional firearms that automatically fire upon each press.
  • Checkpoint Starvation: The game uses manual save points, which take several seconds to finish and do not pause the game while in use. Some levels have them spaced much further apart than others, to the chagrin of many players.
  • Chekhov's Gun: A terminal on the Torrens at the beginning of the game contains details about the ship's design and history: it was the same class of ship as the Nostromo and like it, it functioned as a long-haul tug before being refitted as a courier ship. However, the terminal also mentions that the Torrens still has the docking clamps and rigging of its previous tug role. This becomes important later when the crew realize they can use that to dock the Torrens to Sevastopol if someone on the other side can extend its tug scaffolding, as the Sevastopol spaceport is too damaged to dock with.
  • *Click* Hello: Axel greets Amanda this way when they first meet.
  • Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are: A core mechanic in any xenomorph encounter. Amanda simply can't fight the creature off, cannot outrun it, and it is stalking her with lethal intent. She has to hide, distract it, and move when it can't detect her, or maybe shoo if off briefly with fire (which is a big maybe) if all else fails.
  • Company Town: Sevastopol counts as one, being an orbital waystation the size of a small town owned by a singular company. Most of the personnel there are both employed by and renting from Seegson or one of its subsidiary companies. There is some other private investment there too, but it is minimal as Seegson has had trouble finding external investment and the whole station is in bad financial straits.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: The game was designed to avert this as much as possible. For example, the devs emphasize that the Alien does not teleport, except for 2 very specific scripted instances in which it's required to participate in a cutscene, and must navigate the level naturally (this is notable because most other games in the "monster pursuit" genre do make heavy use of teleporting to compensate for A.I. limitations in level navigation). The Alien also is never given your exact position, although the game will periodically direct it to search around in your general area in order to maintain tension.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: Unlike its disposable mook counterparts in Aliens and the associated games, the Alien is hugely threatening on its own. It is almost completely immune to any of Ripley's weapons and almost any attack by it is a One-Hit Kill, so trying to fight with it will only result in a painful and messy death. This is largely justified though, what with Ripley being equipped with civilian-grade firearms and improvised weapons, not to mention a fifty year technological gap between the respective settings.
  • Continuity Cavalcade: A flashback scene midway through the game is this to the first film. Specifically, it involves a Breather Level playing as Marlow where the crew of the Anesidora visit the alien derelict on LV-426, both following and noting the original's story beats.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • During the flashback to the derelict's discovery, the Anesidora crew find the drag marks from where Dallas and Lambert dragged Kane's body back to the Nostromo.
    • At several points in the game you can find audio recordings made by the crew of the Nostromo during their salvage mission that led them to the Alien. They are all (save Ian Holm as Ash) voiced by the original actors, too.
  • Continuity Porn: Isolation is to the original film what Aliens: Colonial Marines was to its sequel - chock full of design aesthetics and plot points referencing their respective films. Creative Assembly staff members even note in their design diaries that they had access to original production assets from the original film.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive:
    • Despite a couple red herrings, Samuels is firmly on Amanda's side and actively aids her throughout the game.
    • Taylor is trying to harness the Xenomorph for the Company, but unlike Burke from Aliens, they're sympathetic to Ripley's goals and never intentionally impedes her. She does put everyone in danger by releasing Marlow, but that was more due to naivety rather than active malice.
    • Played straight with Ransome, the Seegson executive in charge of the station. He acts like the stereotypical Wall Street Guy and even mentions trying to capture the Alien and profit from it. However, he's a Big Bad Wannabe who's easily outgambitted by Weyland-Yutani, and is only heard from in audio logs.
  • Corrupted Data: Amanda finds the Nostromo flight recorder a short time after arriving at the station, but discovers that all the data is corrupted. It isn't until much later that she is able to restore the files and review the material on it.
  • Cosmetically Advanced Prequel: Averted. You don’t have access to the rifles the Marines used to blow away Xenomorphs in Aliens and the radar isn’t as advanced. In fact, the game specifically goes out of its way to maintain the aesthetic from the first film, down to the terminals, interfaces and mechanical components.
  • Covered in Gunge: Shooting any of the Working Joes at close range results in white synthetic blood getting splashed across the camera. If they're shot next to a wall, the splatter will go over that instead. Even low ceilings will catch their blood, which will drip down, ickily.
  • Creepy Basement: No one likes going to the lowest levels of the reactor core assembly. It is in one of the most remote parts of the station, it is noisy, humid, lonely, poorly lit, only needs an occasional maintenance check every few weeks, and the industrial Working Joes can handle that much, so almost no one bothers to go there. Which is why it is the perfect place for the Aliens to make their nest...
  • Curbstomp Battle:
    • The Xenomorph is functionally invincible. Anyone it catches is dead, and it can only be temporarily driven off with explosions or fire.
    • Working Joes can almost always overwhelm a numerically superior group of armed humans, taking only minimal damage in the process. This is because, unlike Amanda, the NPC humans are too stupid to kite the androids.
      • That being said, engaging the Working Joes in hand-to-hand combat (with your maintenance tool) is always a losing proposition. They will either block the blow and choke you out, take a couple of blows and then choke you out, or the sounds of battle will attract the Xenomorph. In other words: shoot them, stun them or run.
    • Samuels is seen dishing out one of these against a Working Joe in Chapter 12, beating the android with just his bare hands. And the obvious implication is that all of the synthetics you found dead across the level, including the ones piled in heaps, with their heads ripped off or torn in two, were his victims as well.
  • Cutscene Incompetence:
    • All the minigame-based actions (using auxiliary systems, cutting/hacking things, etc.) take several seconds to start and one second to cancel. During this time, you are completely vulnerable to enemies and must go through the entire sequence before you can move around again. It's entirely possible for enemies to find and kill you during this, and you're powerless to retaliate if they catch you in the act.
    • In a downplayed example early in the game, Amanda comes up behind a survivor who turns and fires warning shots at her before running off to get backup. Most players will instinctively duck behind cover at that point since the room is large and open and the player has no ranged weaponry yet, but Amanda will actually automatically go into a crouch and slow her movement for several seconds if the player does not. This guarantees the survivor time to get away and bring back help to try and hunt Amanda down and kill her.
    • You can't warn Dr. Kuhlman about the Alien on the other side of the door, even though you can detect it ahead of time. This is established earlier when Kuhlman notes that he can't hear you.
    • Near the very end of the game, Verlaine says she will set the airlocks on the Torrens to automatic, so that Amanda can get inside in a hurry (and time is running pretty short). It never occurs to Amanda to warn her that there are xenomorphs crawling around which could exploit this.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!:
    • Firearms and weapons are holstered by default, which means that for players accustomed to the common First-Person Shooter setting that already has the weapons ready, one has to manually aim first in this game before they can fire. Also, the aforementioned "aim" button raises throwable items like molotovs instead of outright throwing them quickly.
    • You have to hold the reload button to fully reload the revolver and shotgun. Otherwise, a simple tap would only put one bullet each.
  • Developers' Foresight:
    • In Seegson Communications, if you take out the android that would shut off Samuels's message before it does so, then you don't need to engage in the 3 straight hacking mini-games to contact him back.
    • If you have the motion sensor up when Dr. Kuhlman goes to fetch his belongings, you can detect the creature just on the other side of the door. There's no option to have Amanda warn him to stay away from the door though.
    • The Alien is extremely persistent in its search for you, and how easily it can spot you depends on the light sources, how fast you're moving, and noise—this includes the motion tracker, as it can hear the beeping. The developers confirmed that the Alien doesn't actually teleport in gameplay sections, meaning if you run into it on a new level, that means it followed you as much as the game allowsnote .
    • Staying for too long after the alien kills Axel will cause it to spawn and bum-rush you.
    • Normally there are areas where the Alien cannot get to for story reasons since the game needs the NPCs alive for cutscenes to trigger. If somehow you do get an Alien in there, the NPCs will react like they would any other human you find, but unlike with the ones you find that are hostile, these humans aren't since Ripley is helping them out.
      • Following on this, the Alien simply won't show up in some places (for example, while waiting for the train after Axel dies), especially in the early game until the introduction in the third mission, with the tension coming from the knowledge that it is out there and could be hunting you. But if you make a lot of noise, it WILL show up and kill you, as seen here.
    • If the Alien either a.) kills an NPC near you, b.) immediately leaves, c.) you come out of hiding and d.) another NPC stumbles across you and the corpse, the second NPC may accuse you of killing them. It's an extremely rare set of circumstances (the alien almost never leaves until it has swept the area for more people, you obviously have to be hidden for it not to attack you, and multiple NPCs in the same area almost always stick together), but it is interesting should it unfold.
    • The Alien has three unique animations for when it kills the player if they are hiding in a small crate. Each one depends on where the Alien was when it attacks, where the crate is in the room, and the general context for how Amanda is discovered.
    • During your time in the Alien Hive, it's possible to kill Facehuggers as they try to get out of their egg. If you do this with a melee weapon, Amanda will have a unique animation of her slamming down on the egg to destroy it. Also, if you approach an egg that is opening still, there is a unique animation of the Facehugger leaping out at Ripley.
    • You can spot Hughes before the cut scene where he dies.
    • If you backtrack to the hospital level, you can see the floor grating the Xenomorph chewed through to get to Kuhlman.
    • In the Seegson level, if you kill Francis’ team before the Alien does, the radio message from Mahoney will be different and they will be more prepared for you at the end of the level.
    • If you backtrack through a level and come across a randomly-generated enemy, they'll behave like a scripted enemy would - a non-hostile Joe will attack if you do/go something/where unauthorized, paranoiacs will be randomly kicking vending machines, etc.
    • If one in a pair of paranoiacs spots the creature before it spots them, there may be a special sequence where they tap their compatriot on the shoulder and the two quickly walk in another direction.
    • On the higher difficulty settings, adjusting the lighting actually adjusts the lighting in-universe- enemies will spot you much easier with it turned up.
    • An example that leaked over from the developement process. In response to crafty testers sneaking directly behind the Xenomorph, the developers put short ranged "eyes" in the back of Xenomorph's head so that it would detect players trying to do this. It also makes sense thematically as you do not want to get anywhere near the damn thing.
  • Dilating Door: True to the source material, virtually all the horizontal entrances to air vent crawlspaces are of an "iris" type that automatically open when a moving body gets near. Justified as these are air vents and it allows the aperture to carefully modulate how much air can flow in or out at a given time.
  • Disc-One Final Dungeon: The Xenomorph is dealt with about halfway through the game, with Waits and Ripley trapping it in Gemini Labs and ejecting the entire module from Sevastopol. A large portion of the rest of the game is spent dealing with the androids going on a rampage... and then you get to the station's reactor, where you find an army of Aliens and Facehuggers, and destroying the reactor becomes the true climax of the game.
  • Disconnected by Death: Ricardo is in the middle of telling Ripley something when he just cuts off. When Amanda goes to check on him, she sees that a facehugger nabbed him.
  • Diverting Power:
    • Power switch boxes can be found all over Sevastopol, controlling things like ventilation, speaker systems, and sometimes door locks. Amanda can reroute power from active systems to power inactive ones, creating distractions, cover, or gaining access to caches behind locked doors. Because the systems are usually operating at only nominal capacity at best, however, Amanda can only power one or two at a time.
    • Samuels has to do this by draining power from the surrounding systems to power up the APOLLO/synthetic formatting rig (via a bunch of portable transformers and cables) so he can interface with it. Presumably APOLLO was trying to keep him out by cutting off the device's primary power supply.
  • Do Well, but Not Perfect: The game can actually get harder depending on how well a player evades the Alien due to its constantly adapting A.I. In fact, theres even a Secret Achievement ("100 Times Too Many") you can earn for getting killed 100 times in the game.
  • Downloadable Content: Including the additional missions "Crew Expendable" and "Last Survivor" (which focus on the crew of the Nostromo) and a Season Pass with additional maps for Survivor Mode.
  • Dramatic Space Drifting: The last scene of Ripley after she gets Thrown Out the Airlock.
  • *Drool* Hello:
    • If you ever see drool pouring from a ceiling vent, give it a wide berth. You can usually crawl under them without too much trouble, but if you walk or run under them, you're immediately killed.
    • The first time Amanda comes into contact with the creature is when it starts drooling on her companion just before killing him.
    • Late in the game, Amanda is about to change into a space suit to go EVA, when she notices something dripping on the visor, which is reflecting movement above her...
  • Drop the Hammer: The maintenance jack is half wrench, half hammer. The former is for cracking locks, the latter is for cracking skulls.
  • Dub Name Change: The Working Joes receive different names in other languages. The French release calls them "Lambdas" (which translates to "regular" or "ordinary"), the German release calls them "Hiwi-Androids" ("Hiwi" means "assistant" in German), the Italian release calls them "Androidi Zeta", and the Spanish release calls them "Androides amigos" ("Android friends").
  • Dull Surprise: In areas where both the Xenomorph and Working Joes are present, the latter will usually greet the former with deadpan statements like, "What are you?", "This incident will be reported," and "Containment breach noted." Their lack of surprise is foreshadowing their directive override.
  • Dying Town: The state of Sevastopol Station when the incident began. Seegson had expanded quickly to be ahead of the curve on the "gold rush" of space exploration and settlement, pouring lots of resources into establishing places like Sevastopol, but the rate of growth was much slower than expected, and the investment became a losing prospect. Seegson had been trying to sell off Sevastopol piecemeal for years, and the station is currently partially decommissioned, with only a skeleton crew aboard and its supporting businesses shuttered. The whole place is essentially Space Detroit, complete with a defunct line of product (the inferior Working Joe androids) failing to be the slam dunk they needed for revival.
  • Early Game Hell: From the moment the Xenomorph becomes an active threat to Amanda up until the point she acquires the flamethrower, she is essentially at the creature's mercy and can only sneak by the (sometimes arbitrary) sweeps it performs through an area. Once she does get the flamethrower (and some optional craftable items) the alien, while still the biggest threat, becomes more manageable as Amanda has the means to buy herself time to escape (albeit with the added complexity of Resources Management Gameplay.) This can then switch around to Late Game Hell, especially on Hard or Nightmare mode, because using the flamethrower too much after getting it will make it almost impossible to use in the later game, as the Xenomorph will adapt (and on Nightmare, it will adapt quickly).
  • Easier Than Easy: Novice Mode, which hands you more crafting supplies than you'll even know what to do with, dumbs down the enemy A.I. considerably and makes it to where any attack outside of getting caught by a Xenomorph or Facehugger only delivers maginal damage to Ripley, to the extent where even multiple gunshots deliver unrealistcally paltry amounts of damage to her.
  • Elevator Escape: One cutscene has Ripley escape into an elevator with the doors shutting on the xenomporph.
  • Enemy-Detecting Radar: Amanda gets her hands on motion tracker (a much cruder version of the kind the Colonial Marines would eventually use, intended to track vermin infestations) and it is one of her most helpful tools for identifying when the coast is (relatively) clear. But considering the three-dimensional nature of the space she is in, including false floors and Air Vent Passageways that criss-cross it, and that her depth of field focuses on the sensor screen instead of the environment when holding it, it leaves plenty of room for nail-biting Sensor Suspense. Even when not held out, its passive mode will emit an audible bleep when detecting a new motion "blip", making it functionally similar to the radio in the Silent Hill games in serving the dual gameplay function of making sure the player is never caught too off-guard, and keeping them tense and worried when they can detect but not see the foe.
    • As mentioned below, enemies can hear the beeping of the radar if it is held out too long, so using it conservatively when hostiles are nearby is necessary to survival. A very big- and common- source of tension is when the you're hiding behind a crate- or something similar- with the Xenomorph on the other side and must using the radar just enough to monitor its movements so you can navigate around the crate and out of its field of vision, but without tipping it off that you're close by.
  • Enter Solution Here: At numerous points you have to find key codes to unlock doors and devices.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Sometimes you'll overhear the paranoiacs and Seegson security forces muttering about their family. It would almost qualify them as Punch Clock Villains if not for the fact that they're not being paid to try to kill you.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: The other surviving humans on the space station are highly paranoid and many have decided to just kill anyone they see as a matter of safety, including Ripley. Then there's all the other things trying to kill you on the station, too.
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: Weyland-Yutani is still trying to capture a Xenomorph alive, and bought Sevastopol Station a few weeks prior to get at one, and told APOLLO to keep it alive.
  • Exact Time to Failure: MOTHER counts down the self-destruct timer during the "Last Survivor" DLC, just like in the original film.
  • Excessive Steam Syndrome: Inherited from the parent franchise and, like the parent franchise, can be exploited by those with the right engineering know-how. Turning on air purification functions from power switching panels will fill associated corridors and rooms with thick mist, reducing visibility and giving Amanda cover for sneaking by.
  • Face Full of Alien Wing-Wong: Marlow's wife and Ricardo both get impregnated by Facehuggers. And of course can happen to you if you don't burn or knock away a Facehugger in time.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: The Crew Expendable DLC ends by tricking the Xenomorph into the airlock, only for the door to refuse to shut, giving it enough time to escape. You didn't think it would be that easy, did you!?
  • False Reassurance: The Working Joes are programmed to be polite to the point of condescension... even when they're about to kill you.
    "Let me help you." *chokes you to death*
  • Fauxshadowing:
    • When you see Samuels kill a Working Joe with his bare hands, and take into account all the dead Working Joes you find beforehand, utterly ripped apart in some cases, players could be forgiven for assuming you're getting a Final Boss Preview and that Samuels will pull a Face–Heel Turn on you. He doesn't.
    • Throughout the game, you hear constant references to the corrupt Seegson Security and their leader Sinclair being holed up in the Executive Habitation area, the obvious implication being that you will be forced to confront them,work with them to get off the station or there will be a big battle between the security forces and the aliens with you forced to work your way through. None of these happen and the security are all long dead by the time you get there.
    • Really the game is full of these. Ransome, Lingard, Spedding, the aforementioned Sinclair and others are mentioned in such a way that you think you will be working with or against them but they never factor into the current plot. Could be a case of Reality Ensues as it drive's home that there are dozens of different stories that have unfolded on Sevastopol and you only see the edges of them.
  • Finale Title Drop: The final/epilogue mission is titled "Isolation".
  • Fog of War: Downplayed, in that the motion tracker is unreliable in too-enclosed spaces, often giving inaccurate readings on the position of other moving creatures. It becomes completely unreliable in the Alien hive, where the Meat Moss everywhere bounces the readings all around and the tracker is confused by the many, many moving contacts all around.
  • Forgotten Fallen Friend: Subverted. In the later levels, you’ll come across tapes made by Kulhman and Axel. This is surprising, since this is in the last quarter of the game and the player would be forgiven for forgetting all about two characters that died at the beginning of the game. Rather depressingly, Axel’s tape has him expecting to get rescued soon, which is also his motivation for helping Amanda early in the game.
  • Foregone Conclusion:
    • It's a given that Amanda managed to stop the Xenomorph threat, considering that Weyland-Yutani is no farther ahead with its attempts to harness a specimen a half-century later in Aliens.
    • Amanda cannot find her mother or any clue on the specifics of what happened to her. She will be found completely by accident so Amanda's search will be fruitless.
    • An early scene in the extended cut of Aliens shows Ellen Ripley learning that Amanda dies middle-aged from cancer, so unless Isolation becomes established as a different continuity, this renders the implied ambiguous ending a bit less so in terms of whether Amanda became infected or not.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Foster is Patient Zero, but if you look around the rest of the medical facility, you'll notice other bodies with similar injuries....
    • If you backtrack to certain areas after the Xenomorph has been dealt with, you can sometimes hear roaring off in the distance, hinting that there is actually more than one Xenomorph on-board. This could be a development oversight, however.
    • Unintentional example: if you try to save in the Marshal Bureau in the mission The Trap, the game will warn you that there are hostiles nearby. The game is reading Waits (who is standing next to you) as a hostile, which is technically a glitch but since Waits tries to blow her out of the airlock with the Xenomorph later in the level, this turns out to be rather accurate.
    • During the last two EVA sections, you can see a Xenomorph crawling along the outside of the station. You wind up having an encounter with both of them.
    • If you stop and examine the corpses, you’ll notice only a handful of them are dead from the creature; most of the rest are filled with bullets or have snapped necks. That’s because most of the people attacked by the creature are being taken to the hive, which almost happens to Amanda courtesy of being webbed in a wall, but long after she already agitated the hive.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: If you get caught by the Xenomorph (and you will) in a very bright or well-lit area, you can make out the human-like skull that makes up its face.
  • From Bad to Worse: The game's plot in a nutshell, which is natural for a story set in the Alien universe, but a few moments stand out:
    • The Xenomorph's first appearance in any level automatically qualifies, regardless of the situation.
    • Ripley successfully trapping a Xenomorph in the Gemini tower lab and being jettisoned into space results in this for the rest of the station, as it causes APOLLO to start actively hunting and killing all of the remaining humans on board.
    • Ripley overloading the station central reactor right above the Xenomorph nest not only fails to kill the nest, it causes all of the Xenomorphs to swarm into the station's main sections and begin actively hunting down the remaining survivors once again.
    • Marlow overloading the Anesidora's reactor kills Taylor and damages Sevastopol's orbital stabilizers, causing the station to slowly fall into the gas giant.
  • Game-Breaking Bug:
    • A truly nasty showstopper can occur in the Xbox One version; if the system's memory cache is full, it can cause a glitch at the game's very beginning that prevents either Samuels or Taylor (sometimes both) from talking to you, which breaks the game's scripting and prevents you from playing the rest of the game. Fortunately, completely shutting down and rebooting the console tends to fix this issue.
    • The same memory cache issue can also cause an issue where the game randomly pauses and refuses to let you unpause the game again. Likewise, resetting the console fixes this issue.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: In order to keep the game's story progression from going off the rails via a player using a password they already know in their Archive Logs, the game makes it so that Amanda can't even put in a password at a certain panel unless she's read the password for that panel in-universe first.
  • Gang Up on the Human:
    • The Alien will eagerly kill other survivors just as much as it tries to kill you, but it seems to be generally disinterested in Working Joes unless one walks right up to it. The Working Joes, in turn, will pretty much ignore the Alien unless it straight up attacks them. The Working Joes' disinterest in fighting the Alien is at least explained by the fact they are operating under orders from APOLLO to protect it. Some Expanded Universe works have also established that Xenomorphs can tell that even Weyland-Yutani's much more convincing synths are useless to them as hosts or a food source, and therefore aren't worth hunting.
    • While the Alien's sense for tracking and finding the player increases with difficulty, its awareness of other humans is unchanged at best and at worst is often lowered due to the monster being obsessed with trying to find the player. This can result in scenarios where there are other groups of people walking around in the same room as the Alien, and the Alien will only notice and kill them once it has "lost the scent". While the Alien will never just ignore humans it stumbles across, if both Alien and human see you when you are, say, sprinting for cover, the Alien may chase you and the humans may fire at you rather than at it.
    • On the other hand, this is only some of the time. Hostiles will often hide as well and a great source of tension is being stuck in a room while hiding from the Alien with other hostile humans doing the same thing.
    • More generally, it is rather annoying to see groups of humans strolling down hallways with minimal caution after you've just spent the past hour hiding in lockers, using noisemakers and smoke grenades and sticking to shadows to stay alive.
    • One egregious example: in the level you first square off against Seegson Security, they will shoot at you and completely ignore NPCs running around.
  • Godzilla Threshold: As deadly as it is, the xenomorph can seemingly be dealt with, contained, and Sevastopol station and its remaining survivors saved. However once it comes to light that there is an entire hive of them and they spread out to avoid being all purged at once, the formerly too-extreme option of destroying the entire station and everyone left on it becomes much more reasonable.
  • Going Critical:
    • Marlow attempts to self-destruct the Anesidora by overloading its reactors, hopefully taking Sevastopol with it when it gets close enough. Ripley manages to get aboard and halt the sequence, but too late to prevent a complete reactor overload, delaying the Anesidora's destruction but not preventing it. The subsequent detonation damages Sevastopol's stabilization arrays, dooming it to slowly fall into the atmosphere.
    • Amanda later has to overload Sevastopol's reactor core to destroy the large Alien hive underneath it.
  • Graffiti of the Resistance: The station is covered in grafiti from survivers which help to establish a dystopia-like setting.
  • Gravity Sucks: The destruction of the Anesidora damages one of Sevastopol's stabilizing arrays, causing its orbit to shift into a decaying pattern as it slowly falls into the gas giant.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: The presence of a Hive beneath the reactor suggests (and confirmed by Word of God) that there is an Alien Queen on board.
  • Guide Dang It!: Some gameplay tips and mechanics are only shown once in-game, or are randomly flashed in the loading screens, that players may not even know of such tactics on their first playthrough, unless they learn them by accident.
    • The full extent of the Xenomorph's Artificial Brilliance isn't detailed that much in-game. Players may only realize late that the Noisemaker doesn't distract it when used repetitively.
    • Amanda can crawl to hide under tables, but it is done automatically if you crouch near one. Unlike lockers and box closets, tables don't display a contextual button on the screen.
    • Keeping your presence hidden inside a locker has additional mechanics it in. If you lean forward too much, you are more likely to be noticed, so the game provides a hint on-the-spot for you to lean backwards instead. And if an enemy is indeed closely inspecting the locker you're in, there's a short time for you to hold your breath with a button.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: In Seegson Synthetics, you can find several corpses of Working Joes with only their top or bottom half.
  • Harder Than Hard: Nightmare mode (initially absent from the game, but added in an update), which absolutely lives up to its name. So much so that the Survivor achievement, which requires beating the game on the hardest difficulty, is specifically noted to be achievable on Hard difficult. Specific difficulty spikes include:
    • Most important of all: the Xenomorph will become incredibly persistent when hunting the player, much more sensitive to the noises and actions of the player (and therefore more difficult to fool), and will adapt to the player's tactics much faster (reducing the number of times it will be fooled by a noisemaker, for example). It stays out of vents for longer periods and the tackle where it just damages you has been removed: it gives you no second chances on this setting.
    • The motion tracker screen is broken and unreliable, and won't display enemies most of the time.
    • You have no Map and no HUD (you can't see your health or ammo).
    • The already frustrating Working Joes are even tougher to kill, and any contact with them is instant death.
    • You have almost no ammo and the flamethrower is nerfed: just one little burst consumes around 100 fuel, and the Alien will sometimes outright ignore its effects and charge right at you.
    • The survivors have much better aim with their guns.
    • And one of the biggest leaps in difficulty is that there is very little to scavenge – virtually every chest, locker, corpse, etc has zero loot, scrap metal is rare, and crafting things is overall much tougher.
    • The hacking puzzles are tougher, too. Good luck, masochists!
  • Have You Tried Rebooting?: The surefire answer to ever so many equipment malfunctions on-board Sevastopol.
  • Hell Is That Noise:
    • The sound of the Xenomorph moving through vents is very distinctive, especially the racket it makes when it drops from a ceiling vent nearby. Players quickly learn to fear the characteristic "Clunk! Hisssss..." of the creature making an entrance.
    • The horrible high-pitched screech the Facehuggers make.
  • Hide Your Children: There are several audio logs mentioning children on board the station, but Amanda, nor the player ever see any.
  • Hint System: The loading screen displays tips for surviving the threats on the station.
  • Hope Spot:
    • You are led to believe that you can save Samuels (who's trapped in the APOLLO interface machine) from certain death by disabling the cables in a certain order. It seems to work, but he dies a few moments later after telling Amanda where to go next.
    • Ripley manages to talk Taylor through shutting down the Anesidora's fusion reactor after Marlow attempts to overload it to destroy the station. But Marlow anticipated their actions; the reactor starts up again, explodes anyway, and electrical discharge kills Taylor before she can escape.
    • The whole last couple minutes of the game is this. To wit, you think Amanda is perfectly safe once she finally returned to the Torrens. But Verlaine isn't answering on the comms anymore, and when you get to the ship's bridge, you are greeted by a Xenomorph.
  • Humans Are Bastards:
    • Just like a typical Zombie Apocalypse story, the moment civil authority disappears aboard the space station, the situation immediately devolves into survival of the fittest, murder or be murdered. A lot of the humans on board the station are so paranoid they're ready to kill you on principle.
    • Contrary to what everyone on the station believes, the androids are not malfunctioning. Their hostility is because The Company gave a direct order that the creature was to be protected at all costs, "all other concerns are secondary." Secondary concerns include the androids' regularly scheduled duties and the lives of the station's inhabitants. Furthermore, Samuels is firmly on Ripley's side, while Taylor is revealed to be working for the company to secure the creature.
    • Worse, when the humans aboard show the capability to eject a single xenomorph out of the dozens on the ship, APOLLO raises the threat level to Kill All Humans..
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Amanda can carry several different types of weapons, multiple tools, and a large array of devices inside a backpack which is not nearly large enough to hold them all, especially after you start picking up cumbersome weapons like the shotgun and flamethrower. All of this can also somehow fit into a spacesuit. While you could imagine Amanda strapping some of her gear to back or something, the idea of literally everything and the ammo that it uses fitting inside her pockets inside the spacesuit is outrageous.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Waits' explanation for ejecting the Gemini Labs module with the Xenomorph trapped inside — and Amanda still aboard.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice:
    • This is one of the ways Amanda can be killed by the Xenomorph, specifically if the alien is behind her - she looks down and sees a blood-covered tail pushing through her stomach before collapsing.
    • Axel, just a short while after you meet the person.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Averted to the point of the Computer Is a Cheating Bastard. Enemies can hit you nearly 100 feet away, in the dark - which actually makes sense, since anyone still alive at this point would have to be a good shot.
  • Improvised Weapon: Aside from the obvious cranial-cracking use of the maintenance jack, the bolt gun is a modified industrial rivet gun that a Seegson engineer altered to launch rivets at a considerably higher muzzle velocity after building up an unnecessarily large charge. A whiteboard near where Amanda finds it even has official report memos taped to it with a hand-written note telling bored engineers to quit weaponizing the tools. The practice doing so does turn out to come in handy once the Working Joes go berserk...
  • Incompetence, Inc.: Seegson, who frequently spout We Care corporate propaganda and "Everything Is Fine" messaging, while the company itself is in poor health and everyone who works there knows it. According to Word of God, Seegson is not an evil company, just a structurally incompetent one, filled with Pointy Haired Bosses in middle management, Corrupt Corporate Executives of the banal type who are more interested in padding their golden parachutes before jumping ship for better prospects than they are at improving company fortunes, decision-making committees full of Yes Men, lower down employees who have no way to push back against knowingly absurd directions, marketing departments used to Turd Polishing, and constantly losing their best talent to poaching by W-Y. The fact that the Working Joe line of synthetics went anywhere beyond the tentative stages is evidence of this in action.
  • Infernal Retaliation: Androids can continue to attack you after being set on fire, and usually don't die from just the flame.
  • In Space, Everyone Can See Your Face: The faces of Ripley, Taylor and Samuels in their spacesuits are illuminated. Same applies to Marlow's crew in the flashback.
  • Insurmountable Waist-High Fence: There's a certain spot in the "Serverance" level of the Corporate Lockdown DLC where a hallway has a stack of crates that you can crawl though, but the Xenomorph inexplicably can't—it won't even try to jump above them. It can bypass it by using the vents, but it still makes for a very fun way of teasing it by moving back and forth between the crates.
  • Interface Screw: In Nightmare mode, the mini-map is disabled and the motion tracker is plagued by glitches which distort the image constantly, making getting around that much harder.
  • Interface Spoiler: A loading screen tip openly hints that the Working Joes are not Three Laws-Compliant - while violence goes against their initial programming, it doesn't mean that they can't. True enough, the first scripted hostile android kills a paranoiac for trespassing, and it can do the same to Amanda. And at APOLLO's new directive, the androids are tasked to Kill All Humans.
  • Interquel: The events of the game take place during the 57-year Time Skip between the first two films, and deliberately invoke technology and equipment that is less advanced than that found in Aliens.
  • It's Personal:
    • Marlow attempts to destroy the Anesidora (and, consequently, Sevastopol) with the ship's self-destruct mechanism because the infected captain of the Anesidora was his wife, and he's realized that the only way to destroy the creature permanently is to eradicate its entire environment.
    • Dialogue from Waits implies that the first Alien feels this way towards Amanda, presumably for constantly escaping it. It would certainly explain why it constantly hounds you.
  • Item Crafting: Amanda is a skilled engineer, and can MacGyver up a variety of expendable items from various bits she can acquire along the way. For example, she can make a Molotov Cocktail out of a bottle of rye alcohol, a blasting cap, and some other detritus, or rig up a small speaker, battery, and circuit board into a noisemaker.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Marlow argues they need to blow up the space station to kill the Aliens before they escape. While it's profoundly insulting for him to use Ellen Ripley's example to her own daughter, he's entirely right - no one can possibly control the Alien situation and have a relaxed time to wait for a proper rescue. Also, the Company wants the Aliens and will unleash them.
  • Jump Scare:
    • There are several scripted points in the game where the Xenomorph will pop out unexpectedly to ambush you no matter where it was beforehand, such as on the way back to Samuels and Taylor after retrieving the trauma kit and surprising you when heading to the bridge of the Torrens at the end of the game.
    • Androids on the ground are not always dead. If you turn your back on them while within reach, they'll grab your leg and try to kill you. If you're too focused on the xenomorph and not the bodies, this is the inevitable result.
    • While in the medical facilty, trying to go down one hallway will cause a pipe to explode in your face, prompting a curse from Ripley.
    • Ironically, considering the original film was the codifier of the "Cat Scare", the game largely avoids these, almost to the point of inverting it. The horror more comes from knowing the danger is coming, maybe seeing it (either on the radar or directly) and knowing you have a limited window of opportunity to react.
  • Justified Save Point: Amanda has to insert her keycard in a save station. The player has to wait for a few seconds before the save prompt even appears. It also adds to the realism and suspense where she can die if a nearby enemy attacks her while waiting for the save to go through.
  • Kill All Humans: APOLLO orders the Working Joes to do this in order to protect the Xenomorph.
  • Kill It with Fire:
    • You acquire a makeshift flamethrower a while into the game. It can be used to scare off the Alien, but isn't powerful enough to do it any permanent harm, and there's a chance the Alien will simply power through the flame and kill you. It also burns through its entire ammo supply in a couple of seconds, so it's very much an emergency weapon. It works quite nicely when incinerating Facehuggers, however.
    • You can also craft Molotov cocktails to lay as a trap for androids or humans, or to try to scare off the Alien in an emergency.
  • Last-Name Basis: As with the movies, most of the cast refers to each other by their last name. Samuels is about the only character who calls Ripley "Amanda".
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: The game's protagonist is Amanda Ripley, who is stated in Aliens to have died as an old woman (albeit, she lived a full life and was married) before her mother awoke from cryosleep. Additionally, a comic released a few months before the game also stated that Amanda stopped the acquisition of a Xenomorph. At the end of the game, Amanda seemingly survives as she is discovered by an unknown ship after air locking herself and the last Xenomorph, but her ultimate fate is still unknown.
  • Late to the Tragedy: Amanda arrives at Sevastopol after the Xenomorph has matured and begun killing the crew. There are plenty of survivors even after the collapse of law and order on the station, but they're mostly hostile. Many of the apocalyptic logs the player finds refer to developments that happen during the game. You witness and play a role in a lot of the tragedy first hand as well.
  • Like Mother, Like Daughter: Amanda goes through many of the same things that her mother did in the original movie, and in the end, ends up being the Sole Survivor no matter how hard you try sparing the other humans on the space station.
  • Little "No": Ripley, when she sees the entrance to the alien hive.
    Ripley: Oh no... God no...
  • Lockdown:
    • A frequent condition on Sevastopol, as the Colonial Marshals tried to keep order amid increasing panic, then tried to (ineffectually) limit the creature's movement so they could corner it. By the time Amanda arrives, the lock-down conditions are doing more harm than good as it limits human movement but the creature has gotten good at finding ways around.
    • Can also be used tactically by the player. There are doors which normally open automatically when anything gets near them but have an emergency override button in their frame. Palming this button will cause the door to seal and remain closed for several seconds, until the opening mechanism resets. This is one of the few ways to get away from the xenomorph when it is aware of the player and is moving in for the kill, and though a locked door will not stop the beast, it will slow it down and break line of sight while it tries to find a way around. The player can use this brief opportunity to quickly find a place to hide and shake the trail.
  • Loophole Abuse: The "Mercy or Prudence?" achievement requires beating the game without killing a single human. However, this is only judged by humans you directly kill with your weapons. The game doesn't hold it against you if you let loose a hostile Working Joe or chuck a noisemaker into a group of humans when you know the xenomorph will investigate.
  • Luck-Based Mission: Any attempt at getting "The One" achievement swiftly turns the game into this, primarily due to the unpredictable nature of the Xenomorph's A.I.
  • Macrogame: Any ID tags and logs you've collected carry over across any playthrough and any difficulty. You can even view them at your own leisure during Survivor Mode.
  • Make Some Noise: The appropriately-named "Noisemaker" tool, a throwable object that emits a ringing tone after a few seconds of delay. It's an effective distraction against all kinds of enemies, luring them to the Noisemaker's location. Unfortunately, the Xenomorph's Artificial Brilliance makes it adapt and learn that the tool is just a decoy.
  • The Many Deaths of You: Amanda can be killed by the Xenomorph in several different ways (similar to the death animations from Aliens Vs. Predator), including impalement from behind and the Xenomorph deliberately coiling its tail around her and staring as she dies. How it does her in depends on how it caught her. This is occasionally subverted as well, where the alien might knock Amanda down and yet not go in for the kill as it usually does. This tends to happen when Amanda has hurt it with fire or an explosive and it's only interested in fleeing into the vents; the knocking down is only because Amanda happens to be between the alien and where it wants to go in a BIG hurry. There's actually an achievement for dying 100 times ("100 Times Too Many"); depending on the difficulty, this can be deceptively easy to earn unintentionally.
  • Meaningful Name: The ship responsible for bringing the creature on-board is named the Aneisidora, an alternative name for Pandora.
  • Meat Moss: The people who have gone missing after the creature had gotten lose had all been taken to bottom of the station's main reactor, where the creature set about building a nest and breeding more. In the manner of its kind, the place has been covered in living-looking secreted resin with victims cocooned into the walls.
  • Mega-Corp: While franchise-wide go-to Weyland-Yutani is present (and in fact Amanda and her two companions are W-Y employees) the company mostly stays in the background in this installment. Brought into focus though is Seegson, a smaller and less successful competitor to W-Y. Since W-Y had the dominant position in the space industry, Seegson had to make their fortune by selling lower-cost derivatives of W-Y products and wider investments and subsidiary companies. Unfortunately for Seegson, their attempts to play catch-up to W-Y by aggressive expansion have proven to be a failure, and the company is in the process of economic contraction. As Sevastopol station's owners, this is reflected in the state of the environment as Seegson is trying to liquidate assets and can hardly pay for existing maintenance.
  • Meta Twist: Much of the plot could be seen as a subversion to the first Alien movie:
    • One of the ongoing themes in the Alien franchise is that Weyland-Yutani is a Wretched Hive of Corrupt Corporate Executives who will happily feed anyone to the Xenomorphs if they think doing so will rake in a little more money. So it's a serious change when Taylor, the company lawyer, turns out to be a largely reasonable person and isn't saddled with the Villain Ball.
    • Likewise, the arrogant middle-management Ransome, for all his attempts to profit off the incident, never actually directly does anything to contribute to the crisis besides the fact that he may have been the one to alert Weyland-Yutani of the alien in the first place (and even that is ambiguous).
    • Instead Marlow, who is more or less the Ripley of the game, is the closest thing the game gets to an actual human antagonist, since he actively hampers your progress as you try to escape the station.
  • Metroidvania: Not advertised as such, but it hits many of the required details. Lots of places need Amanda to have found special tools to bypass, there are places where the player may pass through areas they visited earlier as either part of the story or just because they went backtracking, with previously inaccessible side areas opening up as Amanda's inventory expands.
    • The game arguably deconstructs this trope; yes, you get new abilities as the game progresses; however, you have to constantly weigh the benefits of backtracking to get more stuff against the threat of the alien and determine if it's a justified risk. Unlike, say, the SA-X, the alien never stops being a constant danger and sometimes backtracking just isn't worth it to stay alive.
  • Mission Control: Samuels, Dr. Kuhlman, Waits, Ricardo, Marlow and Verlaine all perform this role at various points throughout the game.
  • Mooks but No Bosses: The game has no shortage of enemies beyond the Xenomorph, but the dev team intentionally avoided having any boss fights in the game because it would have undermined the immersive survival-horror experience they were aiming for. The closest thing the game has to a boss fight is a group of six Working Joes ganging up on you later on, but the game makes it fairly easy to take care of them (even on Nightmare Mode) due to the convienient stockpile of weapons and EMPs nearby, to say nothing of a well-aimed Pipe Bomb being capable of blowing them all up at once while they're bottlenecked in the doorway.
  • Morton's Fork:
    • Storywise, everything that happens does absolutely nothing to save Sevastopol or its inhabitants, at best only delaying the inevitable or making a bad situation even worse than before. But Sevastopol has already gone to hell as is, so the player has to have Amanda Ripley do something to at least survive, if nothing else.
    • The weapons are all designed to be Boring, but Practical and can cause just as many problems as they can resolve, especially on the higher difficulties. Use a noisemaker to distract the Alien? A good strategy to help evade it at first, but its adaptive A.I. will quickly catch on and render it useless if you use it too much. A revolver can help with dealing with the paranoiacs if you're unlucky enough to get cornered by one, but the noise from either side's gunfire can draw unwanted attention from their comrades, or even worse, the Alien (hence why the Mr. Miyagi defense method is preferred in these kind of situations). The Bolt Gun, a late game weapon, is a particularly good example of this. Cornered by a group of Hazmat Joes, which are super durable to normal weapons and arent effected by the Stun Baton or EMPs? Better hope you have a really good aim at their heads and luck with it then, as it is the only weapon truly effective at dealing with them. But as a tradeoff, it needs time to charge, can only hold one shot at a time and takes forever to reload, and its ammo is generally scarce on top of that. The dire alternative is just having to evade the machines as best as you possibly can.
  • Musical Spoiler: The music dynamically adjusts to the presence and proximity of the creature, giving the player a heads-up on when to risk moving and when to hide, while ramping the tension accordingly. Except when the music is lying to you.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • The Working Joes can be sometimes seen doing the same quick "arms sprint move" Ash does in the first movie.
    • The Xenomorphs build their hive underneath Sevastopol's fusion reactor, just like they built it under the atmosphere processor (essentially a fusion reactor itself) on LV-426 in Aliens.

     N-Z 
  • Never Needs Sharpening: The advertisements for the Working Joe like to tout its flaws as selling points. Weird, creepy, inhuman appearance? Obviously, it avoids Uncanny Valley problems, and you don't have to worry about mistaking one for human! Hooked up to a hackable central mainframe rather than using independent units? Significantly more efficient solutions compared to the overcomplicated self-contained systems! Much less sophisticated A.I. with nowhere near as many failsafes and no compunctions about murder? Intuitive design that ensures it will always follow your orders!
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The announcement trailer and early game play demos showed Amanda putting her hands up before being ejected out of an airlock. This moment is in the actual game, but done differently - she gets a spacesuit on before the airlock depressurizes.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
    • Waits's booby traps don't succeed in killing the Alien, but end up causing damage to the Torrens and its EVA team when they try to cross over, leaving their radio broken and the Torrens unavailable.
    • Killing the alien with the detachable Gemini module (as oppose to trapping it in the server farm) causes APOLLO to flag all humans on the station as threats and begins exterminating them.
    • Ripley trying to initiate a reactor purge destroys the nest, but causes the Alien survivors to escape into the station proper - making the situation even worse.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!:
    • It is explained why Weyland-Yutani only sent a salvage team out on the surface of LV-426 after Ellen Ripley awoke and relayed her story in AliensMarlow disabled the distress beacon when the salvage crew of the Anesidora discovered the derelict ship and so W-Y had no easy way to relocate it.
    • APOLLO does this in more ways than one. Diverting all the Working Joes from maintenance routines to going on a killing spree keeps the surviving humans' guards up after they thought they had dealt with the creature. The Android attack leads Amanda to seek out and talk to APOLLO directly, where it tells her about how it was ordered to protect the Aliens. It then more or less leads her into the reactor core to discover the nest of Xenomorphs. The android attack is also what helped motivate Taylor to let Marlow out of his cell, which eventually lead to Marlow blowing up his ship and critically damaging Sevastapol and causing the station to fall into the gas giant, destroying the Alien colony.
  • Nintendo Hard: The "Hard" difficulty level (which is actually recommended by the game in order to have the most authentic experience) jacks the Xenomorph's sensory abilities Up to Eleven, as well as makes most enemy attacks a One-Hit Kill. Turn away for a second in a room while the Xenomorph is nearby, don't manage your health or items effectively or just don't stay as silent as possible, and you will be in for a world of hurt. It can also make some areas more trial-and-error than anything else, due to a lack of cover and/or major action set-pieces. And even all thats a cakewalk compared to Nightmare Mode.
  • No-Gear Level:
    • When Amanda has to go to the APOLLO Core, an automated checkpoint will not let her through unless she surrenders her firearms in a secured receptacle before passing through a security scanner. The next section of the game must be completed without guns, though crafted items, her stun baton and maintenance jack are still available to her.
    • Anytime Amanda has to don a spacesuit or when you're playing as Marlow (himself in a suit as well) in his flashback, the player is cut off from using any of their tools, though Marlow at least gets a unique scanner to help point him to his objective.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown:
    • What can happen if you end up getting caught by the Working Joes, as they simply attack and kill with their fists. On the flip side, you can do this to an EMP-stunned Joe, bashing it repeatedly with the maintenance jack.
    • One is also delightfully given by Samuels against a Working Joe to highlight his nature as a superior model.
  • No OSHA Compliance: As is typical of the Alien franchise, though this example is a particularly justified. Sevastopol Station is in the process of being decommissioned when the disaster initially hits, and sections of it are disabled or missing as parts are removed and residents are reduced to a skeleton crew. Subsequent panic and social breakdown did the rest, and several sections of the station are unsafe.
  • Nothing Is Scarier:
    • The announcement trailer deliberately invokes this, as it begins with a lack of music and lights turning on one-by-one in an empty hallway. Critical reviews even hammer this point, in that keeping your awareness on the Xenomorph is critical for survival; it is when you can't see the Alien that you should be worried.
    • The reveal of the xenomorph nest, and the eggs, implies that there's a Queen somewhere on Sevastopol. An interview with the game's writers confirms that there is a Queen on-board, but Amanda never meets her.
    • Some of the corpses you come across have no obvious signs of trauma, besides being pale. Compared to the ones filled with bullets or disemboweled, these ones can be unsettling, almost as they just dropped dead. Which,considering how little food and supplies are available, is entirely possible.
    • Backtracking through a level, with the previous enemies gone, can give this effect.
    • The Anesidora at first feels like it'll be a calm level, as there aren't any enemies on the ship... then you run into one single facehugger and you're on your toes for the rest of the level.
  • Notice This:
    • Environmental interactables, such as doors, switches, and item containers, all have an obvious green light on them. Items that can be picked up will glow and flash.
    • Save checkpoints emit an easily noticeable beeping tone when you're near them.
  • Not Me This Time:
    • Apart from transmitting codes to protect the alien, which is done after it is already there, Weyland Yutani are not actually to blame for this disaster! For once.
    • As mentioned above, unlike virtually every other corrupt executive in the franchise, Ransome never actually actively plays a role in the Xenomorph outbreak.
  • Not So Different: Marlow compares himself to Ellen Ripley in this way when you confront him on-board the Anesidora - he explained that both of them understand that the only way to truly destroy the creature is annihilate every trace of the location it's in, up to and including their respective environments, to ensure it doesn't come back.
  • Not the Intended Use: The Flamethrower, in addition to by and large averting Video Game Flame Throwers Suck, makes for a handy replacement for the flashlight. While it's not as bright, the fire at the tip of the weapon's muzzle sufficiently illuminates dark areas, doesn't run on batteries and (oddly) doesnt waste any fuel, and won't attract attention from enemies.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: During your trip through Seegson Synthetics Administration, almost all of the Working Joes you encounter are disabled, generally with their head or limbs ripped off. As the Xenomorph doesn't attack Joes, you're left to wonder what could've done this. When you see Samuels casually bash in the head of an attacking Joe, the implications are obvious.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: The creature is capable of it, such as it might when pursuing directly behind Amanda during gameplay only to have it appear directly in front of her as that game-play transitions to a Cut Scene. It also pulls this trick any time it knocks Ripley down while on fire, vanishing instantly. Its vent-crawling is fundamentally this behind the scenes, though it provides a bit more explanation. This may be justified because there is actually more than one Xenomorph on the station...
  • Oh, Crap!: Amanda, upon finding the hive.
    Amanda: Oh no...Oh God no.
  • Ominous Visual Glitch: The video report of Dr. Lingard is full of glitches, and it's even a full-motion video. See here.
  • One-Hit Kill: Any attack from the Alien is instant death. So do Facehugger attacks.
  • Our Graphics Will Suck in the Future: Invoked. The now-outdated computer/device graphics and interface from the first film are back, the heroes are trying to survive against a nigh-invincible enemy with technology that is outdated in-universe.
  • Player Nudge:
    • To give the player even a basic means of defense and ensure they don't accidentally pass it up while searching for the Hacker's power cell, the game railroads you into having to pick up the Revolver on a desk before you can pick up the keycard directly beside it and access the nearby power cell with it.
    • After you kill the first Xenomorph, the game quickly shoots up in difficulty from there, to where tools like the Maintenance Jack or Revolver simply aren't going to cut it anymore. As such, the game railroads you into having to acquire the significantly more powerful Shotgun before you can even progress, likewise putting it directly on top of a keycard that you also need to acquire, ensuring you don't accidentally miss getting such a beneficial weapon.
  • Press X to Not Die: Close encounters with the Working Joes (and certain encounters with the Xenomorph) require you to mash a button so that you won't be strangled by them.
  • "Psycho" Strings: A series of background musical chords that get more and more erratic the closer you get to the Xenomorph. Or whenever the game feels like it.
  • Railroading: The game is very linear in its plot progression and any attempt at taking shortcuts will inevitably end with a player running into a roadblock, whether its the shuttlecraft being accessed early but not responding because the event flag that lets you use it hasn't been triggered yet, or a player being unable to use passwords they're already aware of yet because Amanda herself hasn't read them yet in-game. There are also situations where picking up items in order is mandatory for progression, such as Amanda having to get the Shotgun in order to get a keycard below it to leave the room she found it in as well (which, given how relentless enemies get at that point, is practically mandatory to use to survive, hence the game forcing it on you).
  • Random Encounters: Unlike most games in the genre, the player can sometimes randomly encounter enemies when backtracking through a previous level. This can lead to mild sequence-breaking as you may find an enemy in an area that doesn’t fit the story (for example, hostile Joes in the Lorenz Tech Lobby before all the Joes become an active threat or finding a paranoiac towards the end of the game when it’s strongly implied that the combined threat of the Xenomorphs and androids have killed everyone else aboard the station.
  • Raster Vision: In order to recreate the feel of the Nostromo in Alien: Isolation, CRT screens were videotaped, with that footage then dropped into the game and displayed on in-game screens for the proper analog feel.
  • Reality Ensues: With the game taking a more grounded approach that jettisons the more eccentric world building of later works in the franchises (Predators, etc.) in favor of the down-to-earth tone of the first movie, there's a lot of this throughout, both in gameplay and the story:
    • It's eventually revealed that Taylor was supposed to catch the alien but dropped the plan once it came to light how dangerous it was. No one who is not a sociopath and/or an idiot would look at the destruction and death going on at the space station and think that bringing the creature back to civilization would be a good idea.
    • As mentioned ad nauseam elsewhere on this page, the Xenomorph behaves like a real, thinking being. Its actions can only be mildly predicted, distractions will only work so many times, and it rarely behaves the same way twice.
    • As mentioned above, you can - and will - be killed during minigame-based actions. You don't suddenly become invincible while hacking a door.
    • While hiding is an essential gameplay mechanic, staying in any one location for too long can be just as dangerous as moving around too much; enemies, and not just the alien, will start double-checking lockers and under furniture if they know you're in the area.
      • This extends to the story too. Waits and Sinclair's teams are slaughtered by androids and the aliens respectively because they holed up in what they thought were secure locations. This turned out to be the worst thing they could do.
    • During the first half of the game, there's still a decent amount of people - armed and unarmed - on the station (it's actually a bit of a running gag to see people running past you at the beginning of the level at first). As the situation deteriorates, the amount of people you come across drops accordingly. After the androids are given a Kill All Humans directive, you don't see any other living unarmed people (instead you see a lot more corpses with snapped necks) and after the aliens leave the core, you don't encounter anyone at all else besides a heavily armed rogue security team and a lot of corpses with exploded chests. By the last few chapters you don't encounter anyone alive at all.
    • Like in the movies, the motion tracker can only give an approximate distance a contact is from you. It can't tell if it's above or below you, if it's hostile or not, or if there's some kind of barrier between you and it. This last point is especially important since it's not uncommon to see a contact seemingly move away from you only to find out it was traversing around a locked door, etc. and is actually coming right at you. Likewise, it's still a machine and will occasionally glitch out and its beeping noise can tip off hostiles of where your hiding.
    • Unlike its movie counter-parts, the Alien is as loud as you'd expect a large animal to be. On the other hand, sometimes the diegetic sounds of the environment can mask its footprints, dropping out of the vents, etc... especially if you're a distance away.
    • Even after you get more weapons, you're still heavily outgunned and taking on a group of hostiles is suicide. Likewise, any plan that involves direct conflict (like Summon Bigger Fish as mentioned below) can go pear-shaped very quickly, as it's impossible to predict how all the potential factors will play out. For example, summoning the alien to remove hostile humans will cause them to scatter and possibly hide near you - in effect, you wind up drawing the creature to your location.
    • Likewise, if a hostile character spots you from a distance, there's a fairly high chance that they will just warn you off. If you catch them off-guard up close or point a gun at them, they will open fire.
    • Even after getting a general idea of where her mother was, Amanda never finds her. Space is huge after all.
    • As strong as the Aliens are, the Facehuggers, while terrifying, are essentially fodder for them to spread. Naturally a single shot from any of Amanda's weapons kills them, they aren't super-predators like the fully developed adults after all.
    • The Alien is seemingly able to know where Amanda is and sometimes appear ahead of her. While this could be a gameplay teleportation, later levels reveal that there are more than one Alien and the one she encountered in the first half of the game might not be the same one in the latter half.
    • The lockers you hide in are so cramped that you don't have enough space to get a good look at the motion tracker when you bring it up.
  • Red Herring:
    • In a few places aboard the station, you can see small holes (think the size of a coin) leaking atmosphere. This never comes into play in the game.
    • Occasionally you'll see non-alarm-sounding cameras tracking you, the implication being that you are being watched. This is never brought up nor becomes relevant.
    • In one level, you come across a kennel with cages busted open. Despite the implication that you'll have to fight Xenomorphs from animal hosts ala Alien³, this never becomes a plot point.
  • Resources Management Gameplay: Several, from Amanda's health, her flashlight batteries, her ammunition, secondary items, and the craftable resources to make more of them. She needs to balance progressing away from the xenomorph against exploring to find enough of these things to keep surviving against it, then figure out best how to apply them.
  • Retraux/Zeerust Canon:
    • The design aesthetic deliberately invokes a "lived-in universe", and the environments harken back to the original film. Likewise, Amanda uses weaponry and tools that are deliberately less advanced than those seen in games that take place later in the timeline, including a motion scanner with a CRT-like monitor. As the production staff has stated in interviews, practically everything in the game (from architecture to sound effects) is inspired by the original film in some way. It was also done as a way to heighten the tension, since you have to fight enemies with hopelessly outdated technology.
    • Oddly enough, the posters in the game usually have more of a 50's to 60's style of art rather than a late 70's early 80's vibe. This makes a little sense given that station was built a few decades before the game takes place, so the posters reflect an art style prevalent decades before the source material came out.
  • Retirony:
    • Sevastopol station itself is about to be retired when the events of the game occur.
    • Axel wasn't technically retiring, but he was supposed to be shipped out a week before the incident occurred.
    • Some of the paranoiacs will mutter than they were supposed to be retiring soon.
  • The Reveal:
    • Sevestapol was bought by Weyland-Yutani and APOLLO has been operating under orders from them for weeks in secret.
    • There's more than one Xenomorph, and they've been building a hive under the reactor core.
  • Revision: The game's story by default as an Interquel. It also explains why the colony on LV426 never found the spaceship even as they terraformed the planet; scavengers followed the distress beacon to the ship and then turned it off in hopes of claiming the salvage rights all to themselves, which led to the Xenomorph getting loose on Sevastopol.
  • Revisiting the Roots: This was the stated intention of the development team. To date, nearly every game based on the series has taken its cues from the later movies (from Aliens onward). Isolation revisits the franchise's Survival Horror roots, pitting a lone everyman protagonist against a single Alien in a dark spaceship, just as the original did.
  • Robotic Reveal: Averted with Samuels. His status as a synth is revealed in passing during an unrelated conversation, and absolutely no one treats the information as important or surprising anymore. Makes sense, as most players familiar with the Aliens lore were able to peg him as a synth within the first 5 minutes of the game.
  • Space Is Noisy: Pleasantly averted. Any sound is transferred from vibrations in the decking just like in Dead Space.
  • Scenery Porn: The EVA sequences in Chapters 9 (which doubles as Continuity Porn), 16, and 18 exist for this purpose, especially since there are no enemies or dangers present. Gazing upon the Sevastopol in orbit around the gas giant and its surrounding moons and star is a truly breathtaking experience.
  • Scenic Tour Level:
    • Waking up on the Torrens, arriving at Sevastapol, going through the spaceport terminal the first time. Pretty much everything up until Amanda gets a *Click* Hello is done without particular challenge or duress, though the game does its best to build tension during this time.
    • Midway through the game, the Flash Back to the Anesidora crew finding the alien derelict is also this, without risk but with a ton of Continuity Scenery Porn.
  • Schizo Tech:
    • The computers seen in the game are typical 1970's green monochrome CRT computers in pretty much every way; except they're capable of playing full-color full motion video (albeit in VHS quality).
    • As in the original film, it mixes '70s-style silicon boards and monochrome command line computers with weird milky-blood androids who can reason and communicate with perfect clarity.
  • Schmuck Bait:
    • In several areas, you can find what appear to be dead Working Joes. However, if you get too close, they grab you by the leg and try to kill you.
    • The game allows you to sprint, but many gameplay hints or loading screen tips will tell you that's a very bad idea since it'll give away your location to anything you're trying to hide from. In that regard, the sprint function is mostly there to bait players into a swift death.
  • Self-Deprecation: A dying company forced to sell its assets after failing to keep up with its Japanese competition because of a series of overly ambitious investments with a blue mascot that couldn’t sell anywhere near as well as said competition’s flagship. Are we talking about Seegson or Sega? The names even sound similar.
  • Serial Escalation: As an interquel to Alien and Aliens, this game manages to make things more serious than the first film, yet not as serious as the next. In the first film, a small crew faced off against a single monster, while the sequel pitted a squad of hardened badass Marines against a whole hive of the same creatures. The game, on the other hand, serves as a sort of middle ground. At first Amanda is only facing off against one alien, plus some violent humans and androids, but in the game's final act, it's revealed there are multiple aliens inhabiting the station. They aren't nearly as numerous as the hive from Aliens however, and if there's a Queen in that hive, Ripley never encounters it, meaning anyone going through the series in chronological order won't be "spoiled" about its existence.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Played with. The entirety of Sevastopol Station is destroyed and its crew lost with all hands in the process of destroying the Alien(s). This despite the fact Ripley did her best to help as many survivors as possible escape, which ended up being her alone. In the end, it was the actions of villainous Marlow that kept the monsters from escaping.
  • Shoo Out the Clowns: Although hardly a comical character, the bickering between Amanda and Waits provided some levity in a very dark story. His death not only marks the end of that banter, it emphasises that the threat did not end with the Xenomorph being jettisoned.
  • Shout-Out:
    • In a franchise tradition, there are references to Joseph Conrad strewn throughout the game:
      • Apollo was the name of "Joe"'s father.
      • A sailor named Marlow voyages into the Heart of Darkness and becomes ruthless and obsessed.
      • The Torrens was the last ship Conrad was an officer of.
    • There is an origami unicorn in the same case that Amanda retrieves the Keycard from in Mission 6.
    • Occasionally, upon killing a Working Joe, their last words will be something about a dream, or "to sleep, perchance to dream". They also quote "Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow..."
    • The first two survivors Amanda and Axel run into ask for their names, and Axel introduces himself and Amanda as John and Ringo.
      • In the Russian dub, Axel introduces himself and Amanda as Tom and Jerry.
    • The achievement for using the stun baton on an enemy is called "Shock To The System".
    • Similarly one of the early chapters includes a visual homage to System Shock 2: a human corpse seated in the centre of a circular room full of computer monitors.
    • The evidence locker in the spaceport has a small statue of the Wikipedia logo.
  • Shown Their Work: The amount of Fanservice and work into making the game as authentic to Alien is truly amazing.
  • Smash to Black: Whenever the Xenomorph catches you, it'll always cut to black as it's about to deal the final blow.
  • Sliding Scale of Realistic vs. Fantastic: Like the first movie, the game falls into the "Unusual" side of the scale. While there are some obviously impossible or implausible elements typical to science fiction (namely the presence of faster-than-light travel, aircraft like spaceships or the impractically sized space station, the xenomorphs bizarre biology and super durability) the general tone and presentation of the game is very down to earth and planted in some kind of realism; even the technology, including the 70's era computers and use of magnetic tapes, most of the Working Joes and weapons, are fairly mundane in use and never flashy or fantastic in design or concept.
  • Space-Filling Path: By the time it's all over you will have explored (nearly) every corner of every area on the station.
  • Space Isolation Horror: The title says it all. The player gets stranded on a vast but abandoned and barely functioning space station, trying to stay alive with hostile androids and a killer xenomorph roaming around.
  • Space Madness: Implied by the presence of a psychological wing in the San Cristobal Medical Facility. It is filled with padded rooms and canned meditation platitudes over speakers to help treat people who have trouble coping with extended periods of living in space.
  • Stealth-Based Game: A good chunk of the game revolves around this, especially with the Xenomorph. You can barely fight it off, and even then, it's only a delaying tactic to get to a better hiding spot. If it sees you, it will come running for you with barely any time to react. Add in the fact that it can also use vents and likewise to sneak up on you, and you'll be checking your corners and motion tracker frequently.
  • Story Breadcrumbs: Pre-recorded messages, archive logs on terminals, ID tags, and Nostromo Logs are all collectibles that provide more lore on what happened inside the ship and its passengers. Notably, there's a significant part of the backstory that isn't covered by the spoken story dialogue, but are on these collectibles instead.
  • Stylistic Suck: You can invoke this by changing the display to a grainy video format, reminiscent of an 80's VHS format.
  • Summon Bigger Fish:
    • Tossing a noisemaker can attract the Alien, even to areas it's not currently in. This can be used to, for example, attack a group of hostile humans blocking your path. The trade off is that now you have to put up with an indestructible monster instead of five mortal humans.
    • Also mildly deconstructed: In a few places you can do the same thing with a Working Joe instead of the Alien, usually by unlocking a door the android was trapped behind. While this would seem like it would be advantageous over the above, the humans will often get a few shots off at the robot before one of them goes down (normally the humans lose). The noise is likely to attract the Alien, which now has a robotic buddy to help find you.
  • Super Speed: The Xenomorph runs at blinding speed—the game hints even warn you that it's absolutely impossible to outrun it. Even hiding while it's running in your direction and you're out of its line of sight for a few seconds are seldom any help, thanks to its heightened senses being on full alert.
  • Surprise Vehicle: Towards the end, there is a deathtrap involving a train rushing by in short succession. In order to make it more deadly, you don't hear the train until it's very close.
  • Surprisingly Sudden Death:
    • Dr. Kuhlman gets yanked through a door suddenly by the Xenomorph just after walking away to collect his belongings.
    • Later Ricardo is taken out by a Facehugger mere minutes after he and Ripley were able to signal for help and without any build up.
  • Survival Mantra: In the "Last Survivor" DLC, Ellen sings "Lucky Star" to herself while running to get to the Narcissus at the end of the mission.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity:
    • In Chapter 2, some supplies and ammo can be found on the other side of a hole in the ground with only a single board to cross. Naturally it gives way just before you can grab any of it.
    • In the middle of Chapter 12, you will come across a room absolutely full of goodies including multiple shotgun shells. This is right after getting past a group of about 8 androids who are currently pounding on the door you just locked behind you. It's pretty obvious from the absurd amount of supplies in one room that they are about to get through the door and you'll have to fight them off. Also, there's a power switch box that allows you to set up a flammable gas right at the door for an extra offense, a feature that is only found in this room.
    • After spending a couple of previous sections of the game deprived of your firearms, you'll acquire the bolt gun and then find a new shotgun and revolver before taking the elevator down to the reactor core, and a new flamethrower and a large cache of fuel in the core proper, right where the Xenomorphs have built their nest.
    • Averted in Chapter 18, after Amanda is captured by a Xenomorph. The game is extra generous with revolver bullets and shotgun shells, making you think you're in for one final, hellish confrontation with either androids or Seegson Security. You encounter neither, only the Xenomorph (which is immune) and those little bastard facehuggers (which are much more vulnerable to the maintenance jack or the flamethrower, considering how the projectile weapons in this game were intentionally designed to be clumsy to use). So, in effect, you're lining your pockets with useless ammunition.
  • Take Your Time: Chapter 16 is where Amanda finally has enough gear to fully explore the station. It's also right when the station starts to fall from orbit. Despite this, it only losses its mooring as you play the story, giving the player, in essence, free roam of the whole station.
  • Techno Wreckage: Sevastopol station is in bad shape when you enter. Broken panels and exposed cables all around, whole sections on emergency power resulting in reduced lighting.
  • Tempting Fate: Axel reveals that he was supposed to ship out of Sevastopol a week before the incident, just before he gets impaled by the Xenomorph when it first appears.
  • Ten-Second Flashlight: The flashlight Amanda acquires early in the game and wears throughout the rest of it lasts a few minutes on a single battery. Still, she gets so many batteries that as long as the player only uses it when it is actually dark and does not linger overlong, the player is highly unlikely to run out.
  • The Unfought:
    • Per Word of God, there is an Alien Queen on the station, laying those eggs and making more xenomorphs, but Amanda luckily never runs into her. Since she was never to be encountered, the developers kept hints of her out of the Conservation of Detail so players would not expect a climatic scene with her.
    • Sinclair is set up early and often as a ruthless, heavily-armed mercenary commander with a take-no-prisoners attitude. When you start Chapter 16, Ricardo informs you his squad has their sights set on the Aniesadora. Seems like the game's final levels are building up to a brutal and climatic three-way right between you, the Xenomorphs, and Sinclair and his men, right? Wrong. After one firefight with his men in Seegson Communications they're effectively done with, you find their living quarters filled with dead bodies, and Sinclair himself apparently takes his own life after leaving behind a series of audio logs.
  • Three Laws-Compliant: We see both sides of this. Seegson Synthetics are clearly not Three Laws compliant, most likely due to their cost-cutting design and really stupid A.I. They aren't very good at taking orders from humans, have little regard for their own safety and gladly kill humans with a little reprogramming. On the other hand we see at least one proper android who never breaks the first law, and indeed even points out that harming humans is contrary to primary synthetic programming.
  • Throwing the Distraction: Amanda has a few options for doing this, including lighting up a flare and tossing it, or MacGyvering up a noise-maker. These work on various armed humans and Working Joes, but they also work on getting the creature's attention away from her. However, in its case it will not fall for the same trick twice in a row, requiring her to mix it up with different methods of drawing it off.
  • Thrown Out the Airlock:
    • Seen at the end of the announcement trailer, and seen in the game proper when the Gemini Labs module is detached and Amanda has to escape.
    • Done at the end of the game, when Amanda vents herself (in a spacesuit) and the last Xenomorph out of the Torrens' airlock.
  • Too Awesome to Use:
    • The flamethrower is one of the most effective deterrents against the xenomorph, but it has limited ammo that also runs out quickly in full sprays and each use makes the xenomorph more aggressive and harder to drive away, which makes you weigh the benefit of using it vs. just dying and trying again. The fact that it is much more useful against Facehuggers will only make you that much more reluctant to put it to use on anything else.
    • EMP Mines are directly useless against the humans and Xenomorphs, while the standard Working Joes outright get stunned by an Area of Effect. As such, this tool is mostly just kept until you encounter a lot of Joes in the area. Then again, they become useless against the tougher Working Joes wearing environmental coats.
  • Too Dumb to Live:
    • Let's just say there are quite a few people running about who think they can take on the Alien mano a mano. If their name isn't "Ellen Ripley" or "Amanda Ripley", they're wrong.
    • You can find some survivors, sometimes completely unarmed, out and about trying to get a soda or staring into the void of space. Some of these people seem to be traumatized to a point where they might not care if the Alien gets them though.
    • Some survivors will attempt to drive Amanda away with a warning shot, if not attack her altogether. Considering that the creature seems to be attracted to the noise of active humans, discharging a gun can be a suicidal move.
    • In the level The Trap you find a corpse with a guitar nearby, the implication being that the poor schmuck decided to practice some music while waiting for rescue - with predictable results.
  • Trash the Set: In the end, the Sevastopol Station has its orbital stabilizers blown and is sent falling into the orbit of the gas giant KG348 in order to fully destroy all the Xenomorphs.
  • Uncertain Doom: Amanda's fate. Also, it's not clear what happened to Verlaine or the navigator on-board the Torrens (as Amanda doesn't get near the bridge before the Xenomorph confronts her), or the ship itself after Amanda airlocks herself and the Xeno. Though, given that Verlaine doesn't respond to Ripley's last few hails, and the Xeno emerges from the part of the ship where they were, it definitely doesn't look good for them.
  • Used Future: Directly referenced by the developers as the aesthetic they like in the Nostromo: a '70s-style Used Future. There are posters, piles of litter, and stuff like ketchup bottles everywhere.
  • Vertical Kidnapping:
    • Referenced in the announcement trailer, via an air vent the Xenomorph presumably used to drag someone into.
    • Can happen to Amanda, if the player is not careful. The creature will occasionally hang motionless inside a ceiling vent, hiding itself from the motion tracker. Here it will wait for someone to carelessly pass under it, upon which they get dragged up. You can identify the danger by the drool dripping from the vent as the creature salivates in anticipation.
    • There's an unavoidable instance near the end of the game when Amanda is grabbed by a Xenomorph just as she's about to escape the station via a space suit.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: While Amanda can make a quick getaway while the creature is tearing its way through a group of panicked survivors, there are at least a few places in the game where she can approach unarmed ones and warn them that the creature is nearby, telling them where the best (relatively) safe place to wait it out is. This gets them out of the way so they are not caught in the inevitable confrontation when the creature decides the humans outside the vents smell a little too tempting.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: One way of getting past groups of armed, desperate survivors who are so scared and paranoid that they will shoot any stranger on sight is to throw a noisemaker or other device which will attract the Xenomorph's attention, and let it do the job of ripping its way through them. This way, you'll have lesser enemies to worry about.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment:
    • As noted, you can attract the xenomorph to kill other humans, but then you have one very persistent invincible foe, as opposed to several weaker, more timid ones.
    • The game will give you an immediate game over if you attack a non-hostile civilian. This is an easy mistake to make, as differentiating hostile from non-hostile depends on being able to tell if they're armed, and that requires getting pretty close. They're also scattered among the hostiles, making it even more annoying. Fortunately, there are so few non-hostile civilians that this almost never comes up, and killing first works out fine most of the time.
  • Videogame Flamethrowers Suck: Averted. The flamethrower may be next to useless on the Working Joes, which is quite understandable given they're robots, but humans naturally hate fire and it will drive the xenomorph off. It even learns to fear the mere sight of the flamethrower, but will charge you if you wait too long to fry it.
  • Villain Has a Point: Even though Marlow is depicted as an antagonist, all of the films prove that his strategy of stopping the Xenomorphs by adopting a Kill 'Em All mindset is the correct one.
  • Villain Protagonist/Villain Episode: One of the planned future DLCs is a mini-campaign in which you play as Ransome, the Seegson Corrupt Corporate Executive in charge of the station whom you heard from in audio logs throughout the main campaign.
  • Wham Shot: Upon being ordered to make the Working Joes stop killing everyone, APOLLO tells Ripley it can't because there's a problem with the station's reactor. When Ripley takes an elevator to the bottom of it, the first thing she sees is the entrance to an Alien hive.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Amanda gives Waits this when he ejects Gemini Labs from Sevastopol with the Xenomorph - and her - still inside. She chews him out for it after she gets back to the station.
  • Where It All Began:
    • A flashback involves the crew of the Anesidora discovering the derelict ship from the original film.
    • For the game itself, Amanda wakes up inside Torrens and must return to it in the finale, albeit with a worse situation at hand.
  • Wire Dilemma: Samuels asks you to manually wire some power generators in the correct order of colors. Later on, the area will be covered with red emergency lighting that it becomes impossible to tell the wires by colors, so he gives you clues on their physical locations instead. If you mess up the ordering, you die.
  • With Catlike Tread: Loud noises are guaranteed to attract the xenomorph's attention, and keeping quiet is an essential strategy for survival. However, given the vagaries of the game, it is highly likely the best laid plans for sneaking through are going to be interrupted by, say, accidentally knocking over a box or an errant weapon discharge, neither of which the player is necessarily responsible for.
  • Wolf Pack Boss: The closest thing the game has to a boss fight is in the Showroom area, where Amanda has to fight a whopping six Working Joes simultaneously.
  • Wrench Whack: A maintenance jack is the first tool Amanda comes across, allows her to get through certain types of obstructions and serves as an Improvised Weapon. That said, it's actually the hammer head on the other end which serves as the melee weapon. It's only the very first use of the jack as a melee weapon does Amanda actually use the wrench half to hit someone. Otherwise, the wrench only gets used to break locks.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: There are many, many places in the game where it looks like the Xenomorph problem can be contained... except the achievements say there are several more chapters and any fan of the franchise should know it is never that easy...
  • You Are Already Dead: If you get attacked by a Facehugger, then you get an immediate game over, even though Amanda likely won't die for several hours or days.
  • You Are Too Late: When Amanda attempts to destroy the Xenomorph hive in the station's reactor area by triggering a reactor purge. She succeeds in destroying the hive, but some of the Xenomorphs manage to escape. Later on, when she gets captured by a Xenomorph, she discovers that the aliens have just made a new hive, thus making her entire prior victory meaningless.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: Waits and Amanda lure the Xenomorph into the Gemini Labs module and eject it from the station, but immediately afterwards, the Working Joes become hostile and massacre nearly everyone in the Marshal's Office, forcing Amanda and Samuels to connect with APOLLO to stop it. THEN Amanda has to overload the station's reactor core to destroy the large Alien hive underneath it. AND THEN she has to stop Marlow from destroying the station by triggering the Anesidora's self-destruct system. AND FINALLY, she has to escape the critically damaged station before its orbit decays and it falls into the nearby gas giant. At the very end of the game, when she heads over to the Torrens... can you guess? An Alien confronts her at the bridge, and she's forced to vent herself and the Alien through the airlock.

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