Published on May 19th, 2016 | by Chris Ramirez, Editor1
Aliens vs. Pinball Review
Zen Studios masterfully brought the thrill and competiveness of pinball into the digital medium. They continue to accurately capture the charm of the variety themes of their tables. So what makes their new table pack, Aliens vs. Pinball, stand out from the other outstanding tables available? Zen Studios have successfully captured the tone of the Alien franchise, not easy feat, to release what I would consider their best pack yet.
Zen Studios made an interesting choice for the themes of the three tables. The three tables cover Alien, Alien vs. Predator, and Alien Isolation. Usually with movie franchise, Zen Studios has a tendency to theme their tables around key moments of a single movie franchise. This pack instead focuses on three different franchises that include the Xenomorph. In past pack releases, one table will often feel grander than the others but this is not the case for this pack. By focusing the tables on three distinct franchises, each table is full of detail as if they would be the highlighted table for their own individual packs.
What helps capture the different tones of each table, based on their respected franchises, are the visual and audio details within the table. Zen Studios has taken a number of sound bites from the source material where playing the game often feels refreshing, unlike past tables, where audio queues will often repeat itself and quickly become annoying.
The Alien table is themed after Ridley Scott’s first film. The table takes after the film in maintaining suspenseful tone. Table bonuses are themed after events from the film. Players are allowed to pick the type bonus game once it’s activated or play the bonuses in the order of the film. Allowing players to pick the bonus they want to play allows for easier jackpots and high scores.
Alien vs. Predator:
Similar to the Aliens table, the Alien vs. Predator follows its movie counterpart in tone. This table is all about action. This table does not allow you choose events like the Alien’s table but that does not hinder the enjoyment of the table. Bonus games include hitting designated targets in Predator vision and matching symbols on the temple to get extra points. There is a great variety of objectives for the table. The audio clips from the film do repeat themselves often and can get annoying when playing the table for an extended amount of time.
The Alien Isolation table is the most realistic table out of the three available tables. I other two tables have effects, such as Predator mode, in which can only be seen in a digital version of pinball. The Alien Isolation table seems to not have any digital pinball effects. Characters move around in the nearby environments but nothing that affects the actual game play. This is not a bad thing. Bonus rounds are simple hit the target and hit the ramp objectives. Just like the other tables, this table adapts the tone from the source material. The sounds and audio bites create a suspenseful and eerie environment.
Summary: The Final Truth: Zen Studios has truly outdone themselves with the Alien vs. Pinball pack. They continue to make remarkable packs and this pack outshines them all. The audio and tone perfectly match their respective source film. Pinball packs usually consist of one main table with two smaller ones but this pack consist of tables that could be the highlight of their own individual packs. Deciding to make tables from different franchises is a brilliant idea that allows each table to hold their own. If you are a pinball fan, an Alien fan, or both, this is simply a must buy.