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Updated: Typo to Blame for Aliens: Colonial Marines AI Issues?

One of the biggest gripes people had with Aliens: Colonial Marines was the lackluster (to say the least) Xenomorph AI, but now it seems that some of the issues can be traced to a single letter typo.

This was posted back in October of 2017 by ModDB user jamesdickinson963, who created the TemplarGFX mod that was well-received for its improvements to the game. We reported on the mod back in 2016 when it was on Version 2. Now currently on Version 5, jamesdickinson963 has been continuously working to make the game a more enjoyable experience.

Just recently this revelation has been getting some traction with gaming journalists, with Engadget, Gizmondo, Ars Technica, and others reporting on it. The story started spreading after a Resetera Forums post sharing what the modder had discovered and testing the results.

 Typo to Blame for Aliens: Colonial Marines AI Issues?

The Xenomorph AI was heavily criticized after the launch of Aliens: Colonial Marines.

PC Gamer has also investigated the effects of correcting the typo on Alien AI:

“In my experience, they’re not only considerably more aggressive, they’re also much better at tracking the player. As an experiment, I tried just running away from one, a maneuver which would normally confound a xenomorph, and it stayed right on my tail.  

The change is less noticeable in some situations, and it’s tough to say just from playing how much of the xenomorphs’ clumsiness was caused by this typo, but they certainly seem to move more efficiently once it’s corrected. They waste less time getting to the player, crawl and lunge more often, and generally move in more of a beeline rather than their usual drunken stroll. I mean, they’re still plenty dopey, but hey, what did you expect?” 

We’ve reached out to Gearbox Software for comment and will update the story if we hear back from them.

If you still have yet to try Aliens: Colonial Marines, it is currently on sale with all DLC for $2.99 via Fanatical.

Update:
Gearbox has responded to this news in the form of what seems to be a joke employment listing.

The position they posted specifies: “Review all code for typos. Just that.”

Once on the application page, the application only includes a single question:



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Comments: 56
« Newer Comments 12 Older Comments »
  1. PsyKore
    I tried this but I didn't see much difference. Aliens did however crawl more, occasionally flank and on the rare occasion dodge from side to side (this was admittedly cool but unfortunately didn't happen often).
  2. Corporal Hicks
    Yeah, I recently resisted buying Homeworld because the remaster was put out by Gearbox. I refuse to purchase any of their products simply due to how they handled the criticism and what came out about the development of the game. Like you, I don't do that with any other company.
  3. Gate
    Randy Pitchford (and going farther than just Gearbox but he as a person) insulted players to the point where I refunded both Homeworld games on steam. Gearbox remains the only company I've ever boycotted products from. Bethesda, EA, Ubisoft all save face and fix anti-consumer rhetoric when called out on it. Gearbox has yet to make up for that with ACM and other products.
  4. RidgeTop
    To add insult to injury.

    Wouldn't expect anything less from Gearbox at this point, honestly.

    I'd find that hilarious if I didn't think Gearbox/Pitchford were awful and didn't give a shit about anything to do with the game.

    Too right. While I don't hate the game and enjoy a play of it now and then, how they handled the situation was just awful. Zero accountability taken and petty attacks on legitimate critics. Definitely not supporting them as a studio in the future.

    What little good did come of ACM seemed like more a product of TimeGate, Demiurge, Nerve Software, and Check Six Games, than it was of Gearbox.
  5. Huggs
    Not only is it too late, it simply costs them money to issue a patch even if it fixes one typo on any platform other than PC.

    Yep. It would be a waste of money this far in. It's like paying to put a brand new exhaust system on a car that needs to be completely re-built from the ground up. And I mean every single thing down to the tiniest bolts.

    Eventually you have to reach the point where you either accept it for what it is, (a total loss) and put it out to pasture. Or call the scrap guy, and get a few bucks for it.

    There's really nothing that can save the game for me, personally. Every now and then I enjoy the first few minutes on the Sulaco, the walk to Hadley's, and the Raven chase down in the hive. But that's about it. Other than that, it stays in the wallet.
  6. necrotard
    Honestly, the AI was my biggest issue.  I didn’t see the promotional material before, so I didn’t know how much better it looked before release.  I looked afterwards and I understand the misrepresentation, but I was definitely late to that controversy.

    The game was a basic Aliens shooter that I had enough fun with, but my biggest gripe was aliens constantly getting stuck running into walls, going in the opposite direction from me.  These things are supposed to be trying to kill me, but it was like they were wind-up toys going in random directions.
  7. lost dragon
    Not much to add to what's already been said.

    I completed the game on the 360 and lacklustre A.I, as disappointing as it was to be encountered, was far down the list of OMG..how did this get through?/WTF is this sh#t moments i had with the game.

    It's been 5 years, the game failed to capture any of the potential it had and was a cluster f##k from start to bloody finish.

    It joins a list of disappointing Alien games, films and Graphic novels that have had my time and money.

    Sadly i expect it won't be the last.
  8. maron
    I bought it some months before and this game is difficult af. I heard it was too easy before.
    Now, *slash* *slash* and dead.
    Never played the game again.  ;D
  9. Wweyland
    This will not fix much, I doubt many people will try it.
    It's been 5,5 years and the game is still popular clickbait I guess.
    Maybe it's time to move and the perhaps Randy can finally stop getting death threats.
  10. Predaker
    This is a nonstory making the news rounds because they could headline it about a single letter typo and any article proclaiming a massive improvement in the AI is sorely mistaken.
  11. B.A.
    I, like many, had high hopes for Aliens: CM when it first appeared on the cover of Game Informer. After the console version of AvP came along, which was OK but only average, I wished for a really awesome scaled up version of the late 90s AVP on pc. Long story short...it was all a letdown. However, if you are in need of a game in the Alien/Aliens universe, Alien: Isolation makes up for all the lackluster Alien games in the last decade. It is simply a masterpiece. Although difficult, it is well worth playing. (By the way...an update for the game added an easy difficulty). You may know this already. Just a reminder.
  12. acrediblesource
    A great Aliens game, but was missing one key component: Bullet Time slow motion action. Timing in this game is fast and the details are great, but the lack of this cinematic trait for a game based on a movie, it just seems like a lost opportunity and pisses on this Alien-based experience.
  13. Huggs
    So when someone asks why the demos looked better? and why did the game change for the worse? He says, "The game actually changed for the better in tons of ways".

     :D

    Perhaps he'd be willing to compensate me for the two lungs and diaphragm I just injured laughing so hard. Seriously dude, you'd have a better chance trying to sell that the sky ain't blue on a clear day. Oh my Lord.
« Newer Comments 12 Older Comments »
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