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Video Game / Aliens vs. Predator: Extinction

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Aliens Versus Predator: Extinction is a 2003 Real-Time Strategy game developed by EA Games, marking a significant departure from most games in the Alien vs. Predator franchise. Rather than play directly as a single Alien, Predator, or Colonial Marine, you instead command groups of them as they engage in a war for dominance.

Weyland-Yutani and the Colonial Marines have jointly founded a mining colony on the wild planet of LV-742, but things quickly get out of control when the colonists accidentally unearth secret caches of Alien eggs. As Xenomorph hives emerge across the globe, a clan of Predators arrives seeking bloodsport and valuable trophies. The planet is quickly engulfed in a Mêlée à Trois, which is only complicated further once Weyland-Yutani starts taking an interest in both savage alien races...


This game features the following tropes:

  • Abnormal Ammo: The marine Flame Trooper and Smartgunner can be upgraded with cobalt-60 ammo. The radiation they put out stops the Xenomorph's Healing Factor.
  • Achilles' Heel: The Aliens possess a vulnerability to fire, it does extra damage to their units and negates any regenerative abilities they have.
  • A Commander Is You:
    • Marines: Balanced/Ranger. No melee units, but have a large selection of different ranged and utility units. Reliant on Commtechs to call in reinforcements at designated drop zones.
    • Predators: Elitist/Guerrilla. Very low numbers and high unit costs. All Predators are able to cloak and heal themselves at will by spending energy. Reliant on a slow-moving Shrine that calls down reinforcements via drop-pods.
    • Aliens: Spammer/Technical. Fragile units and very few ranged weapons, but potentially high numbers. Reliant on defeating enemies and impregnating them with chestbursters, via a Queen that lays eggs.
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  • As Lethal as It Needs to Be: Despite possessing deadly claws, teeth, and blades, Alien attacks merely render their victims 'comatose' so they can be dragged back to the hive for impregnation. They never recover from this state, however, so they are still considered dead for gameplay purposes. The Alien Ravager, however, conspicuously subverts this - It will always kill its victims outright via decapitation, preventing later impregnation.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: The Alien Queen is one of the the strongest units in the Alien lineup; only surpassed by the Ravager in terms of attack power. Having the Queen lead major assaults is a valid tactic, especially once she's been upgraded with the army-buffing 'War Empress' trait.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • The Marine ExoSuit is built like a tank and packs some of the best firepower in the game but is obscenely slow and takes up a whopping four population points. To put that into perspective, the Marines cap is 25 units, so almost a fifth would be taken up by just one ExoSuit. While extremely tempting, it's better to save the cap and purchase more specialized units like the Smartgunners, who can make up for the ExoSuit's firepower, or limit yourself to one ExoSuit and use it as a damage sponge to keep the enemy off your more fragile units.
    • The Alien Ravager is an extremely powerful melee unit, the most powerful in the game in fact, but they fight to kill, and since the Aliens require live hosts to impregnate Chestbursters, they're not recommended when you need to replenish your forces.
    • The Predator Vanguard. They pack a mighty wallop with their Sinister Scythe, are great at soaking up damage, and can kill just about anything in three to four hits, but their attack speed is abysmal and not ideal in situations that pits them against multiple enemies, which is extremely common. It's best to use them as a Support Party Member and back them up with other units than solely rely on them as frontline fighters.
  • Bad Black Barf: When upgraded the Runner will poison enemies with symbiotic spores that turns their blood black and soupy which weakens them and allows the Hive to track them. Enemies infected with these spores can be seen vomiting a black substance.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder:
    • The Predator Brawlers fight exclusively using their arm-blades.
    • The Alien Ravagers fight using enormous scythe-like claws called Hullblades, which they use to decapitate opponents.
    • The Alien Carrier has mantis-like claws in place of hands.
  • Bloody Murder: The praetorian's digestive and vascular systems are connected together which allows them to vomit large amounts of their acidic blood on enemies.
  • Boring, but Practical: Every race has a unit that isn't as cool as others but generally necessary for effective engagements.
    • The Marines have the basic pulse-rifle toting Infantry. While you may be tempted to get more Smartgunners or even ExoSuits, the Infantry are more versatile and pack a lot of firepower. This is somewhat mitigated by their upgrades, which improves their health, equips them with an under-barrel grenade launcher and increases their combat effectiveness by rendering them immune to staggering attacks.
    • The Aliens have the rank-and-file Warriors, which are purely physical foot soldiers meant to fight and die in droves, but they soak up enough firepower for your more specialized breeds to do their work, and aren't half bad at damage themselves. Plus, their upgrades allows them to continue fighting even when their legs are blown off, so they can last just a bit longer in battles.
    • The Predators have the Hunter. They're nowhere near as tanky as the Vanguard, nor as flashy as the Hydra or Blazer, or even melee oriented for that matter, but they possess powerful focus fire and can kill most single targets with ease in large groups. They can also fire while moving, so it's perfectly viable to just compose your army of Hunters, acquire the vision upgrades, then just kite the enemy, or kill them before they can close the distance, which is especially effective against Aliens. But if you wanna throw in a few Hydras and Blazers, then you can sit back and watch the fireworks.
  • Breath Weapon: The Drone Aliens, once upgraded, spit cystic spores that infect any enemy they strike and result in them birthing stronger Aliens. It's also the only truly ranged attack available to the alien faction.
  • Cannibalism Superpower: The PredAlien regains health by biting opponents, and is the only Xenomorph unit to do so.
  • Civil Warcraft: Each race encounters a Palette Swap of itself at some point during their own campaigns - The Marines fight mercenaries, the Predators come to blows with a rival clan, and the Aliens battle a genetically-engineered mutant strain of their species.
  • Cold Sniper:
    • The Marines get the Sniper, the only female unit, who can be upgraded to overpenetrate targets and most obstacles in the environment.
    • The Predators get a more exotic unit called the Stalker. This Predator wears thin, restrictive armor that enables it to cloak for fully twice as long as other units, and comes equipped with a speargun that can hit distant targets spotted by allies or the various Vision Modes. The speargun can be upgraded with 'bleeder spears' that lacerate targets and chemically-induce bleeding, which quickly causes humans and most wildlife to become pathetically weak and barely able to move thanks to the blood loss.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: On the minimap, Marines are blue, Predators are orange, Aliens are green, and bodies that can be harvested for skulls/Facehugger hosts are yellow.
    • Normal Facehuggers are the usual pale, fleshy color, but the Praetorian Facehuggers are deep red.
    • The K-Series Aliens have bright golden exoskeletons, to distinguish them from the original, darker-colored strain.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: The campaign's rules for enemies vary wildly. Sometimes they'll Gang Up on the Human even if it's the Aliens and Predators working together, and other times the game just spawns swarms of them off-screen in a complete violation of unit spawns while still bringing them in the regular way to boot.
  • Cool Guns: The Marines have quite a few neato weapons in addition to their already cool assault rifles lifted straight out of Aliens, such as the M47 Smartgun, which, instead of aiming itself, has homing bullets and can be upgraded to fire radioactive ammo, and the Sledgehammer Rifle upgrade for their Sniper, which fires a plasma tracer that can burn through walls to hit enemies. The Exosuit upgrades to a Metal Storm/railgun hybrid.
  • Deadly Disc: The Predator Disc Master throws homing smartdiscs to strike multiple targets, and can keep three discs in the air at once. Upgrading them will cause the smartdiscs to lodge in an opponent's body, dealing massive amounts of damage.
  • Dragon Their Feet: After Kadinsky captured and tortured to death by the Predators, all of his containment protocols fall apart, setting loose his genetic creations—the K-Series Aliens and a PredAlien Queen that creates its own hive. The K-Series is wiped out by the original strain, while the PredAlien Queen's hive is annihilated and nuked by the Predators.
  • Elite Mook: The upgraded Drone Aliens spit cystic spores at enemies that cause the hybrid Aliens born from them to be stronger and have more health, evidenced by a red stripe running down the middle of their heads.
  • Escort Mission:
    • The third Marine mission has you escorting a noncombatant observer with your squad, and he's painfully fragile. Thankfully, keeping him alive is only a secondary objective.
    • In the sixth Alien mission, you need to rescue a captured Queen and keep her alive for the duration of the level.
    • The final mission for both the Marines and Predators involve escorting a unique unit equipped with a thermonuclear device.
  • Evil vs. Evil: The regular Aliens vs. the human-engineered K-Series Aliens.
  • Explosive Breeder: Aliens can be upgraded with several abilities that increase their reproductive rates. Eggs get "Hyperfertility," which crams more facehuggers into them, and facehuggers get "Binary Infestation," which causes them to implant two larvae at once.
  • Face Full of Alien Wing-Wong: The Aliens generate new units by impregnating Marines, Predators and wildlife with chestbursters - Different types of units require different hosts.
  • Fragile Speedster: The Alien Runners can move extremely quick and take most enemies by surprise, but their damage output is rather weak. They're best used in hit and run tactics, especially in packs. If upgraded, they make good rush units as they explode upon death and deal damage to the enemy.
  • Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke: The final missions of both the Alien and Predator campaigns involve battling mutant Alien strains created by the experiments of Weyland-Yutani. The Aliens have to fight a Palette Swap strain called the K-Series, while the Predators have to destroy a PredAlien hive ruled by a genetically-engineered PredAlien Queen.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: The Commtech can't call in dropships or use the starships assassination system indoors.
  • Gatling Good: The Combat Loader Mini-Mecha carries twin miniguns.
  • Godzilla Threshold: According to the codex, the Ravager aliens are only brought in during extreme conflict as they only kill their opponents and never take them as hosts.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Dr. Kadinsky for the Alien Campaign's final mission. After Predators ransacked Kadinsky's lab, the K-Series are set free and end up competing with the original strain for space and hosts. The conflict escalates into an all out Hive War between the species, but Kadinsky is never faced by the Aliens (in fact, he was likely already killed by the Predators at this point).
  • Grenade Launcher: The Marine Infantryman's upgrade equips them with M41A Assault Rifles, which includes an underslung 40mm grenade launcher, which replaces their single-shot-at-max-range attack. This has an Arbitrary Minimum Range whereupon they switch to sprayin' and prayin'.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: Upgraded Warrior Aliens deal armor-ignoring damage and gain the ability to keep fighting after their health reaches zero; they burst apart in a flurry of acid and their upper bodies continue living. If they reach the hive and heal, they'll even regrow their lost limbs.
  • Health Food: Upgraded Drones spit predigestive "spores" that cause the hosts flesh to erupt into cysts full of a nutrient goo that makes chestbursters grow up big and strong. This is also how Hivespace enhances the alien Healing Factor. Predaliens have predigestive saliva that turns enemies they harm into "nutrient slurry," invoking Life Drain.
  • Hybrid Monster: A mechanic of the Alien faction. Different map creeps produce different strains of Xenomorphs.
  • I Love Nuclear Power: Humans can be upgraded to use radiological ammo, which counters the Xenomorph Healing Factor and causes Damage Over Time to Predators, creeps, and mercs.
  • Infernal Retaliation: If a Runner Alien dies sustaining fire damage, it will explode violently.
  • Kill It with Fire: The only Xenomorphs not fucked right up by flamethrower troopers are the Runners, who explode when burnt to death and the PredAliens which are mostly fireproof. Most others will have their Death-Activated Superpower ruined by being burned to death.
  • Level in Reverse: The final level for the Marines is the same as the first level for the Aliens, in reverse.
  • Macross Missile Massacre:
    • The Predator Hydra - One of the two "Military Predator" units - carries a miniature missile silo on his back. The Hydra can send missiles to strike multiple targets, and when surrounded by enemies he can simply launch a flurry of projectiles to indiscriminately hit everything around him.
    • The upgraded Marines' SADAR Troopers carry four-barreled rocket launchers that fire a barrage of HEAT missiles. Multiple SADAR Troopers can easily create a storm of missiles and immolate just about anything.
  • Mad Scientist: Dr. Kandinsky, a Weyland-Yutani geneticist brought in to study the alien races facing humanity. Two Marine levels involve capturing Aliens for him to study, one Predator level involves ransacking his lab and kidnapping him, and the final Marine level involves rescuing him. Two major threats - The K-Series Aliens and the PredAlien Queen - are the results of his experiments on the nonhuman races.
  • Man Bites Man: The PredAliens are the only Xenomorph unit to have a biting attack, augmented by corrosive saliva that restores health.
  • Magnetic Weapons:
    • The Exosuit's upgrade replaces its miniguns with a railgun mitrailleuse.
    • Likewise, the Sniper's upgrade is a railgun rifle with plasma-tracer bullets, which can shoot through walls.
  • Meat Moss: Unlike the films, Alien hives are this (they're resinous moldings there). The alien's "turrets," called "Hive Nodes," create a web of root-like filaments that secrete Health Food.
  • Mercy Kill: Units rendered 'comatose' by Alien attacks cannot be revived - The best you can do for them is to order your other units to kill them before a facehugger reaches them.
  • Metamorphosis Monster:
    • The Praetorian Aliens can morph into a Queen provided that one doesn't already exist. They can also morph into Carrier or Ravager Aliens once upgraded.
    • Upgraded PredAliens will grow in power every time they engage in combat, molting and gaining HP as well as spines on their backs. Once they reach their maximum HP cap, the PredAliens will resemble lionfish.
  • Mighty Glacier:
    • The Marines have the Combat ExoSuit, which moves at a snail's pace, but packs heavy firepower and can soak up damage like a sponge.
    • The Predators' base unit, the Shrine, is quite slow, but has a large health pool and can fire a multitude of heat lasers that fry enemies to a crisp, making it an excellent support unit in large engagements.
  • Mini-Mecha: The Exosuit, an armored power loader equipped with twin-linked miniguns on the right arm and a HMG/cannon combo on the left, or twin railgun mitrailleii, one on each arm.
  • Mirror Match: Each campaign features combat against a competing faction of the player character's species. The marines have encounters against mercenaries looking for xenomorph specimens, the Predators fight another clan, and the Aliens' final enemies are the K-Series.
  • Mook Commander:
    • The upgraded Queen Alien will buff all transbreed Aliens (born from regular facehuggers) around her, making their heads glow green.
    • This is an actual unit for the Marines. The Commtech is responsible for requisitioning new soldiers and directing the fight.
  • More Dakka:
    • The Exosuit is equipped with twin miniguns and a heavy machine-gun, and its upgraded form has a pair of railgun mitrailleuse. The ensuing storm of bullets heavily slows most units and can rapidly chew through health bars, but it is held back by its slow speed and lack of mobility.
    • Marines take aimed shots at long range, but spray 'n' pray at close range, effectively doubling their damage output.
  • Neutrals, Critters, and Creeps: Docile cow-like oswocs, aggressive scorpion-like krilitics, and neutral kurn. Humans can ignore all of them (unless they piss off a krilitic or pack of kurn for some reason), while the others use them to generate resources in their own way (infestation or trophy hunting).
  • No-Gear Level: There are several instances where you'll be expected to complete a mission - or part of a mission - without your faction's headquarters unit available to summon reinforcements or buy upgrades.
  • No-Sell
    • Marine Flamethrower troopers wear special helmets that prevent facehuggers from getting a good grip, which means they can't be impregnated while conscious.
    • PredAliens in turn are able to shrug off fire attacks, which are devastating to other Alien units.
  • One-Hit Kill: Facehuggers will instantly kill organic creatures they manage to attach themselves to, assuming they don't get smacked aside or shot mid-leap.
  • Overarching Villain: Dr. Kadinsky is the only character whose actions carry over all three campaigns.
    • Marine Campaign: The Marines are assigned to obtain Xenomorph specimens for Dr. Kadinsky to study, while protecting him from the hostile alien races. The final mission has the Marines storm the Predator compound in an effort to rescue him.
    • Alien Campaign: His genetic alterations of the acquired Xenomorph specimens from the Marine campaign leads to the creation of the K-Series, which is battled by the original strain throughout the rest of the campaign.
    • Predator Campaign: A disgraced Predator allows himself to be captured and experimented on by Kadinsky, who imbues its DNA with that of a Xenomorph, creating a PredAlien Queen that must be killed in the final Predator mission. This act was deemed so sacrilegious, the Predators made a point to kidnap Kadinsky and torture him to death for birthing the creature, which leads to the Marines storming their base to rescue him in the final level of their campaign.
  • Percent Damage Attack:
    • Plasma gun Predators can use "Dark Plasma," which does 33.3...% of an enemy's health.
    • The Vanguard Predator's scythe does 25% health as damage.
  • Plague Master: Alien Runners have a unique symbiosis with alien spores: they weaponize them through nematocysts on their hands, which causes blood poisoning on anyone they can't kill outright.
  • Punched Across the Room: The Alien Queen's melee attacks can send smaller enemies flying a considerable distance, stunning them.
  • Removed Achilles' Heel: The PredAlien produces a fire resistant secretion that prevents it from igniting and reduces flame damage, making them ideal for dealing with enemies that are deadly to other Alien units. It's explained that they got this trait from their Predator hosts living on an arid Death World.
  • Sinister Scythe: The Predator Vanguard wields a dark plasma scythe that scales its damage output with its target - no enemy in the game can survive more than four strikes from a Vanguard.
  • Sickly Green Glow: A Color Motif of the Aliens, derived from the logo of their franchise. Their HUD is stylized to resemble green light, Alien units on the minimap are marked with bright green dots, and Aliens buffed by the Queen's 'War Empress' upgrade have their skulls glow green.
  • Stock Sound Effect: The One-Woman Wail vocalization from Xenosaga's "Song of Nephilim" plays as part of the background music in the first Alien level, adding to the eerie atmosphere.
  • Taking You with Me: Several Alien units have the ability to damage or even kill enemies upon death (though several fo them are only accessible through upgrades).
    • The upgraded Carrier will shower the immediate area with acid and facehuggers when killed while the upgraded Warrior will splatter acid when their legs are blown off though they can still fight afterwards. However both of these will be negated through if killed by fire.
    • On the other hand, the Runner will explode into what the beastiary describes as "cartilaginous shrapnel" only if killed with fire.
  • Unique Enemy: The PredAlien Queen, in the final Predator mission.
  • Video-Game Flamethrowers Suck: Well, yes and no. As mentioned previously, most xenomorphs get crispy fried by flame marines, but this can result in an Attack Backfire if used against runners, and predaliens No-Sell fire damage.
  • Weaponized Offspring: The Alien Carrier is a late-game unit able to carry and nurture six Facehuggers (upgraded to twelve) on its back. In combat, the Facehuggers can detach from the Carrier and pounce at nearby enemies.
  • Weird Currency: The marines are the only faction to use actual cash as their resource. Aliens use "Infestation Points" (which basically means "how many Puny Humans are growing a baby right now?"), and Predators use Honour, represented by Trophy Skulls.
  • Worker Unit: The Marines have Androids, who set up Sentry Guns, and the Commtech, who requisitions new soldiers. The Aliens have drones (also the basic combat unit) who are able to produce and move move Hive Nodes. The Predators have the Shrine, which is more of a Base on Wheels.
  • You Have Researched Breathing: Largely averted, but Marines have to upgrade to the M41A, which was previously depicted as standard-issue.

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