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Alien: Isolation Out Today on PS4, PS3

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Alien: Isolation Out Today on PS4, PS3

Alien: Isolation is out today on PS4 and PS3, and it’s designed to capture the style and horror of the 1979 sci-fi classic. To celebrate, two members of the development team join PlayStation.Blog for a look into the rich, complex process of bringing the iconic killer to Alien: Isolation.

Alien Isolation

Animating the Alien

My name is Simon Ridge and I’m an animator on Alien: Isolation. My main focus while working on this game has been animating the Alien and helping to bring this character to life. At the beginning of every task in animation, I always start by researching, gathering influences, and surrounding myself with everything I can to do with that character.

On Alien: Isolation we had an abundance of reference material; this helped massively in developing a good idea of the psyche of the Alien and the world it inhabits, and acted as a good grounding point if we ever strayed too far. 20th Century Fox kindly gave us brilliant information from their archives.

When it came to creating a style of movement and physicality for the Alien, I had to look a bit further than just the films and artwork. During early tests for locomotion cycles, we found that if one direct influence was noticeable, it instantly felt wrong — it just wasn’t the “Alien.” If the arms or body swayed too much, it looked too human; too much tippy toe, it would look like Nosferatu, and too much plodding made it feel like a T-Rex.

People’s interpretation of what they felt looked “right” for the Alien varied widely and so, what worked best was to take inspiration from lots of areas and mould them together.

Our Alien needed to feel as creepy, almost unnervingly awkward as possible when moving at a slower pace (akin to Bolaji Bodejo’s — the actor who was under the alien costume — early screen tests) but still have the ability to go smoothly from this to lightning fast at any point. You’ll see when you play the game that when he’s moving slower, the Alien is higher up, his weight slightly back, the hands forward in an uncomfortable manner. As the Alien moves faster, it goes lower down, its arms are back and into a more streamlined shape, ready to pounce at you. When exiting vents it needs to feel and look like a smooth unfurling, the imagery from H.R Giger’s Necronomicon in the back your mind. We’ve worked hard to achieve that, and I really hope it shows through!

It was imperative that this Alien never looked rushed or flustered, completely calm and in control of the situation, this is THE Xenomorph!

Alien: Isolation -- Crew ExpendableAlien Isolation

Building the Tech

I’m Tobias Kleanthous, and I’m the animation programmer on Alien: Isolation. My main responsibilities on the project have been working on the technology for animation and the bridge between the lower-levels of AI and animation.

Providing the foundations to achieve the levels of flexibility and fidelity we really wanted to achieve with the Alien has been a great challenge for all of us. Our greatest ambitions were to deliver an authentic feeling creature that felt close to what we felt we saw in the first film.

It was very important to everyone in the team that we could make the creature both oppressively gargantuan and fast; he’s a relentless and methodical hunter, a threat that’s always going to be there and that you can’t escape from.

The Alien has a high degree of freedom of movement aboard Sevastopol, from slow movements to sprinting around corners at speeds that Ripley could only imagine, to climbing into the vents ready to jump out and grab you when you least expect it! Nowhere is safe — remember that.

As the Alien’s AI is heavily systemic and unscripted, we invested a lot of time in developing technology that allowed us to move him round with as few constraints as possible.

For his general movement, we blended large numbers of animations in 3D to dynamically synthesise movement accurately in game, whilst preserving the artistic intent of the animators.

Alien: Isolation

We have many layers of animations and poses which we can dynamically alter to ensure consistency of presentation and better accuracy. For example, the AI relies on the Alien actually physically looking at something in order to detect it. So, we made sure that he could move many parts of his body, independently of others, in this case, to look where he thinks you may be hiding!

I really hope we’ve brought him alive to all the players and gamers out there, as much as he’s come alive for us. We’re incredibly proud about what we’ve been a part of and really excited to finally let the Alien loose on the public!

Alien: Isolation is available today on PS4 and PS3.

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43 Comments

  • This game feels more alienated then the other games releasing this month.

  • You could say it’s almost Isolated.

  • Sir_Bronius

    This game is such as disappointment.

  • ^
    Don’t quit your day job.

  • Sir_Bronius

    Apparently I can’t type this early in the morning, *This game is such A disappointment.

  • MUFFADILLION

    I was going to get this one. What do you guys think? Is it worth a buy?

  • I’m passing on the 2 games I was going to buy this month, Alien and Driveclub… the first for DLCs and bad review, the second one for no support on logitech wheels… good thing I still have a good list of old games in my backlog

  • Djent_Maven

    This game is amazing so far(about 8 hours in) If you like Amnesia, Outlast etc. As a big Alien fan I will admit I get excited abut the little things like the movies original soundtrack being there, sound effects and design straight from the movie. Music/Sound design is absolutely terrifying. I love the way they give you crafting items to use in tight spots. Really makes you feel like you have a chance(although with brains not brawn)

  • In just two days this will be mine

  • The funny part about that don’t quit your day job comment, is that I actually am at my job getting paid to do this, so in a way I don’t half to.

  • Rezolution77

    After reading about all the thought and effort put into this game,
    I started to get Deja Vu, being a quick Vita buyer $299, and the words from Sony about being unprofitable to create AAA games on it, and will be stopping them.

    Definately holding off on a PS4 this time around.

  • whereymyconary

    I read a ton a reviews for it, and the scores are everywhere. I usually find that a good sign means the game calls to different people. I got the impression that it really comes down to how much you like survival horror. If it’s your thing then this game will do you right. If your more an action game fan with little moments of terror then this game probably not for you. Do you play F.E.A.R. or outlast? If outlast is the answer then you should be fine.

    Personally really excited to play it, the ascetic alone makes me giddy. But I’ll wait a while want to finish my backlog, I have Sherlock and dangan ronpa to beat still and with vita TV coming next week I’ll be starting persona 4 again to try and platinum it. So maybe a good Black Friday game for me.

  • DancerNinja

    yo playstation ppl! update the store…. NOW! 555+++

  • Certainly one of my most anticipated games. Was watching people streaming it last night, suspenseful!

  • Dangisuckatgamin

    #11
    The VITA sold far less than PS4, that’s a crazy assumption to make

  • Alienating the alien?

    What about alienating the people who don’t agree with the practice of selling an on-disc single map demo of an advertised mode and holding the rest of it hostage behind a Season Pass purchase?

    No?

    Nothing?

    And let me just point out, this is not your standard PS Blog “I want this because I am entitled to this” garbage. I don’t do that. I’m one of the people that complains about that. If you are NOT outraged that a developer/publisher advertised a mode, and then revealed at the 11th hour that it’s only a single map and the rest of it requires a Season Pass purchase, there’s something very wrong. That is downright shady.

  • Where the heck is drive club? I could pre-order last night but now I cant download the game ? anyone know ?

  • My Crew Expendable DLC code isn’t working. Will it be available later today when the store updates??

  • Roaming_Ryu

    Grabbing this after work today. Nostromo Edition! Very excited!

  • Crew Expendable code doesn’t work…

  • Rezolution77

    #15
    Not like I was talking to you, or asked for your idiot comments in my blog column underneath.

    But what assumption are you even talking about?

    I simply said I am wary about Sony Hype these days, and you want to blabber about sales facts that are not always accurate.
    Wether PS4 sold more or not, it does not change the needed revenue to meet the consoles expectations.

    Vita already has the hardware needed at less cost.

    BTW, how are you liking all the Vita available Indies on your home console, enjoying PS Now, no backwards compatiibilty or mp3 support, and waiting like I am doing to buy one anyway.

  • I have never been into survival horror but, I really liked the original film. I had never seen it until I was 19 and I was like eh its probably some cheesy b movie with **** special effects and bad writing. But as I was watching it (I had just seen Prometheus and recognized the ship and stuff) I got more and more into it and all the sudden BAM I was screaming and terrified. So what I am saying is that if it is even close half as scary as the movie I will pick it up.

  • Rezolution77

    So you can play a couple games on a system that a PC could do better, have more of, and for roughly the same cost.

    Whoopie.

  • Very nice post…I’m looking forward to play this Alien game….this is the 1st good Alien game in like….15 years.Please release a demo.

    @ 23 Rezolution77 – You think your PC could do better than Driveclub,Second Son,Shadow Fall?…….haha thats funny….ha PC bastards.1st you are all rude with someone that simply pointed you the truth then comes the nonsense….typical troll.But some things you said about PS4 is true gotta give you that.

  • Rezolution77

    What truth?

    PS4 selling more had nothing to do with what was said about Sony Hype?

    And because your limited intellect can not understand information, does not make it nonsense.
    Just over your head, which is why you should have left someone alone in the first place.

  • Rezolution77

    You think a PC couldn’t?

    I am not saying I’m better, just that a PC is more cost effective.
    Which is not even the subject I brought up.

    And trolls are people crawling out of their caves to complain about the noise.

  • This is the Alien Game we deserve, but not the one needs it right now.

  • Picked it up at midnight release. The game is amazing. The attention to details and the atmosphere is spot on with the films. It is easily one of, if not the best Alien franchise games to come out.

  • alv_101argand

    @26
    Wow you just managed to define yourself.

  • I’m very excited to play this, the original movie is a classic and was very influential to me and it looks like a game is finally doing it justice.

  • Bleeding_Lilly

    I don;t care if people say that it is bad, I am playing this game! I am a HUGE fan of Alien and I wouldn’t miss out on this! :D

  • Rezolution77

    @29
    Get a Plus membership.

    And I don’t expect a HUGE part of the american gaming population to grasp wisdom, even when it slaps them in the face.
    Join the masses.

  • Rezolution77

    Better yet,
    mind your own business and just let it go in one ear and out the other.
    Like usual.

  • Rezolution77

    And Sony mods.
    Please let me know when I have had not stayed on topic originally untill commented on.

    Shouldn’t we have a way like EU for posters to keep it in the same post?

    I know I would get tired of monitoring arguments, and would save blogpost space.

  • Its good that this game is just a single player affair only. But hopefully this will be a good game compared to the others that were a train wreck.

  • alv_101argand

    @32
    1) I subscribe to plus when there are amazing discounts for games.

    2) Oh wise one! Care to share your wisdom with us? No? Well at least listen to what I have to say then. It seems that you don’t understand the fact that no matter how much you whine to sony for AAA games for vita it won’t work. Not until things smooth out for Sony. They tried once, failed and now they are busy with supporting their most profitable platform. Us vita owners have to wait a while however if we drop support for the vita sony will do so too. Still this year we are getting freedom wars, minecraft, oreshika and tales.

    3) If you want a pc equivalent of ps4 be prepared to shell out much more for that.

    4) You randomly start to insult people for no apparent reason.

    5) I am not an american….

  • Ignore all the trolls, especially ones with <25% completion average and 1500 trophies complaining about lack of games LOL.

    Nice informative post about the creative process, Alien definitely looks menacing in portrayal and movement animation. I hope being in the shadows of the previous catastrophe doesn't affect gamers from giving this a chance.

  • I forgot to pick up my pre-order. Still just so pre-occupied with Destiny (my personal Game of the Year)

  • diegorbrito

    Cool

  • I have the PS3 version and I think it is an incredibly awesome, and creepy experience. Crank the headphones, turn down the lights, and the game will take you there big time. The sound and music are extremely well done here. The game looks fantastic and plays great, I love it.

  • Rezolution77

    @36

    1. This was not a topic about Vita, it was about the failure to deliver what was advertised by Sony.
    Regardless of how many sold, and wether you bought one (yet).
    2. Who was randomly insulted, when my statements had to be commented on by you and the few replied to?
    3. I might share my wisdom with you, if you weren’t scared of enlightenment and reply to your inbox.
    4. I have personally built a PC equivalent for just a little more than than PS4’s current price (not to mention it lasting longer and having more support with, not to mention repairing)
    5. So your not American, and post on the US Blog. (Oh well four out of five isn’t bad)

    Don’t worry, maybe in a few years you will get it.

  • Rezolution77

    @37
    And yet I still buy more digitally than you.

    Trophies, lol. Hilarious.
    I was earning those before they ever started giving them out and you were in diapers.
    So sorry I don’t have the ability to go to my room and hide from my parents, school, work, or kids to obtain trophies.

    ROFLMAO, your brilliant my friend.

  • alv_101argand

    @41
    1) You are right. It isn’t. But you are trying to make it.
    Sony didn’t fail to deliver its promise. If they did then what do you call KZM, Uncharted GA, Gravity Rush, LBP, Tearaway, Borderlands 2, Wipeout, SSD and upcoming Freedom Wars? Their promise is like a road with minor obstacles but you still can go through it.

    2) Hey don’t change the subject. You started it. Don’t act as if anything you do or say is right and others are to blame.

    3) I am not scared of anything, certainly not your enlightenment. I just didn’t check my inbox and so I must admit, it was partly my fault. Partly because I wasn’t gaming these past few days as I was busy with my studies.

    4) A PC doesn’t last longer. A console does. + You won’t get sony exclusives on a PC, would you?

    5) I am not american, neither am I from uk or japan. I just have a region 1 psn account that’s all.

    But hey don’t be sad. Maybe in a few years you will get it!

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