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Alien: Inferno’s Fall Cover Has Been Revealed!

While we don’t typically report on the cover reveals of Titan’s Alien or Predator novels, this is one we just can’t pass up! Alien vs. Predator Galaxy – and many within the fandom – have been quite regularly vocal about our opinions on Titan’s cover art, wanting a throwback to the quality of the old Bantam novels of the 90s. Titan has taken very few steps in the directions to improve that, but they’ve taken some.

Marco Turini’s cover artwork for Alien: Into Charybdis was one such step. And now we have this fantastic piece of artwork for Philippa Ballantine and Clara Carija’s upcoming Alien: Inferno’s Fall! Check it out below!

 Alien: Inferno's Fall Cover Has Been Revealed!

We don’t know the name of this artist, but it’s certainly a huge step forwards from Titan and one we hope to see continue with their other releases. Alien: Inferno’s Fall is currently slated for release on the 26th of July and is available for pre-order from Amazon (US/UK). I shall also include the synopsis below for those who can’t remember what Inferno’s Fall is about.

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  1. Corporal Hicks
    So I went back to check where the switch into something more overtly Alien comes in, and I think it's Chapter 26.

    Spoiler
    Quote"The first creature which emerged stood at least three meters tall and balanced on two overgrown back legs with almost hoof-like feet. It carried the same armored carapace and dorsal tubes as all Xenos. The neck arched longer, while the head sported a thick vertical fin that must have come from its host animal. The coloring wasn't black, however. Instead, the creature gleamed with a strange, deep-red armored skin."
    [close]

    So I'm wondering if it's intended that the goo mutated humans into something Neomorphic, but intended the wildlife to mutate into something more Alien, and I didn't quite pick up on it? I dunno.
  2. [cancerblack]
    I find that easier to handwave since they were explicitly looking for them and then they were seemingly all long dead, as opposed to an unexpected and thriving planet everybody knows about and can visit.
  3. [cancerblack]
    Quote from: VeteranSergeant on Sep 15, 2022, 09:42:49 PMI mean, the RPG didn't even realize that its depictions of Arcturians would be a paradigm-shifting discovery. A near-human alien species that worships a race of other near-human aliens from the sky? It would upend everything we know about human evolution and our place in the universe. The RPG treats the place as a curiosity that only scientists care about.

    This in particular drives me up the wall.
  4. VeteranSergeant
    Quote from: TheBATMAN on Sep 15, 2022, 05:35:40 PMI wont criticise the excellent RPG, I honestly feel the over-reliance on its source material is starting to harm these stories somewhat.

    I think the biggest problem with the Aliens license is that it's just not meant for this volume of material. The Alien universe is one of bleak corporate exploitation among the stars in a very near-future setting. The Marines in the movie are f**king bored out of their minds. Their dinner table conversations are about bad food and prostitutes. They complain about not getting into any "stand up fights." As a former Marine, the only people who complain about not getting into any real fights are the people who've never been in one.

    Frost says "I got a bad feeling about this drop," and Crowe immediately makes fun of him for it.

    The Alien was supposed to be the most exciting thing that had happened to humanity, though not in a good way. The rest of it was terraforming worlds, then pulling natural resources out of them. Space travel is slow, ships are expensive, colonies are fairly small and purpose-built.

    The trouble for the license is that because the Alien is the most exciting thing that ever happened, it coming back over and over is the only way to make the setting exciting.

    The RPG tried to spice things up with this whole Call of Duty: Space Warfare setting with some three way Not-So-Cold War, but it's almost antithetical to the way the setting has been depicted. The idea of governments fighting over distant planets, when space travel is still so relatively slow, is at odds with a future where corporations have tremendous pull and can control the lives of their employees so completely.

    I mean, the RPG didn't even realize that its depictions of Arcturians would be a paradigm-shifting discovery. A near-human alien species that worships a race of other near-human aliens from the sky? It would upend everything we know about human evolution and our place in the universe. The RPG treats the place as a curiosity that only scientists care about. The fact that the RPG seems to dictate a lot of the "canon" for the books is probably a bad thing, because, honestly, the RPG's canon is kinda dumb. A setting looking for a reason to exist as an RPG, rather than a setting so interesting and full of possibilities, it begs for an RPG to be there.

    Destroyer of Worlds is a pretty solid example of just how badly written the RPG is a lot of the time. Nothing in the story makes any sense. It's just a sequence of action scenes strung together by a skeletal detective plot. How do UPP operatives arrive on planet if there is one space port? How does a fleet of UPP ships arrive without being detected until they are in low orbit? Why do the orbital defenses only start firing as the UPP invasion is underway? If the setting has no shields, space combat would be incredibly dangerous to all sides, something you'd only engage in if desperate or with some overwhelmingly pressing need.

    It's not Firefly or Star Wars with a galaxy full of developer worlds to visit and freebooters with their own Affordable Spacecraft. It's much closer to The Expanse. There's just not going to be a lot you can do with the setting before it's going to feel like everything is a retread, or you have to go so far outside the established canon to introduce anything new. 
  5. TheBATMAN
    Finally finished this. Not bad but found the whole thing a bit dull. The characters didnt really appeal to me and whilst I wont criticise the excellent RPG, I honestly feel the over-reliance on its source material is starting to harm these stories somewhat.

    Certainly not a bad book, but not one of the better Titan efforts for me.
  6. Corporal Hicks
    But then they're later described as just being black. I don't know. The use and depiction of the goo and the mutations are the only thing I'm unsure of when it comes to Inferno's Fall.

    I think it is some of Titan's strongest character and world-building. I really do love the book, it's just that goo that I've got doubts about.
  7. Corporal Hicks
    So to add to that,
    Spoiler
    the mutated Engineers are described as blue/black so I'm now wondering if the book is saying they just turned into big ass deacons.
    [close]
    The over-all descriptions of the various aliens aren't really specific enough for me to really know what creature I'm supposed to be imagining. It's really the only thing about the book that is disappointing me.
  8. Corporal Hicks
    I'm nearing the end of a re-read of this and something I've noticed re: the portrayal of the way the black goo is working.

    Spoiler
    It's not until the last 50 pages or so that they start to describe all the mutated lifeform as armoured like the normal Aliens. I'd been reading all the other forms as various Neomorph-like mutations.

    Which I still wasn't terribly keen on since we never quite saw them mutate that way in the Covenant flashback, but I rationalized as "well, we saw Neomorphic creatures in David's lab, and we know David said it did mutate some creatures" so I rolled with that. By the end of the book, it's even possible that this is a pathogen that David reprogrammed to get those results.

    But then the last 50 pages of the book goes into the Fire and Stone realms and seems to depict them as the various LV-223 things like the Xeno-shark where the goo mutated them into something more overtly Alien.
    [close]

    Feels like an abrupt change that was missed in the editing.
  9. Wompdonkey
    Quote from: TheBATMAN on Aug 23, 2022, 09:06:49 AMAbout 70 pages in. Finding it a slog so far. The 'Knot' and its associated characters are not really standing out for me at all.

    Not a Zula fan either. Wish she had been kept to the comics. I didnt actually mind Defiance for the most part but I just couldn't buy the amount of xeno encounters between Alien and Aliens. I wish the comics were a different continuity to the novels.

    While I like Zula as a character, her inclusion is a lie to sell more copies and to act like this ties into the EU. The Jackals are not important to the story at all.

    Also, I did not care about The Knot either. They aren't interesting. For all the focus on them, they have no bearing on anything going forward. Or in this book for that matter. They exist to get stuck in the mine and find the ruins.
  10. TheBATMAN
    About 70 pages in. Finding it a slog so far. The 'Knot' and its associated characters are not really standing out for me at all.

    Not a Zula fan either. Wish she had been kept to the comics. I didnt actually mind Defiance for the most part but I just couldn't buy the amount of xeno encounters between Alien and Aliens. I wish the comics were a different continuity to the novels.
  11. xShadowFoxX
    So I read it again.. for the third time. And I'm kind of annoyed. The book, to me, doesn't really hold up with a second or even third read through. There's more to pick up and analyze.. the characters are still great but thinking it through.. I'm dropping my score from 7 to 6 which is below average over here.
  12. Wompdonkey
    I really enjoyed your breakdown of Zula. I don't agree with every point, but I really appreciated the character breakdown from someone who served.

    The premise for the new game that was announced around San Diego comic con definitely sounds like a Zula story, so we'll see if she finally gets a proper story that people can unanimously enjoy. She might not be going anywhere is why I bring that up.
     
  13. VeteranSergeant
    Quote from: Wompdonkey on Aug 16, 2022, 05:23:30 PMI like Zula and don't think she's been written too well in the past. I liked Defiance more than most people on this site it seems

    I don't really have any problems with Zula as a character, but she's just too fundamentally flawed.  It should be an interesting framework for a character. This disabled Colonial Marine full of regrets and desperate to prove herself after getting badly injured in her very first combat drop.

    But the way the story of Defiance is framed around Zula just makes her... silly. Professional militaries never worry about the Sunk Cost Fallacy.  Also, professional militaries know that soldiers get killed or maimed in battle. It's literally part of the job. So, no matter how much it costs to train a Colonial Marine, if that Marine gets blown up in their first battle, the Corps moves on, and trains a replacement.

    Which works both ways. Zula Hendricks would have been medically separated and shifted off to the Veterans Administration. If the Corps believed she could serve in some kind of non-combatant role, or maybe the contract is a "federal service" contract and she gets sent off somewhere to be put behind a desk doing data entry or something.   What the government wouldn't do is go to the time and expense of having surgeons fix her, only to send her back out to strenuous duty where she is likely to get broken again, where they have to have surgeons take the time and expense to fix her again. The Marine officer literally comes in, berates her for costing them a ton of money, then the Corps sends her back out to cost them more money? Nevermind how ridiculous the scene is with the officer scolding her for getting blown up by artillery, why is this future government so bad at accounting? Also, who was shooting at them? The officer and her NCO mention "bugs" but apparently they are bugs with mortars?

    The whole concept for Defiance is stupid, which made it hard for me to really get into it. If Zula is the protagonist, the story needed a more intelligently written way to get her involved in the action. As it was written, it felt like one person wrote a story, and then somebody else came and inserted a protagonist they'd imagined up, who was a small-framed woman who wanted to prove she was as good as everyone else, but also she was physically disabled.

    I was a Marine for ten years. Carried a combat load and a radio for much of it. I've got a bad back and two bad knees because of it, lol. What most people don't realize is the most important part of being a Marine is not the ability to pull a trigger and hit a target. It's to carry a shitload of weight for a long ass time, and then still be able to pull a trigger and hit things after you've been exhausted and sore for hours or even days.

    So how do you do this intelligently? You have to reframe the story around something where she makes sense as the protagonist. Maybe Zula had been a co-pilot in the Colonial Marines and was medically separated out of the Corps after her dropship crashed, so she took a low level job as an orbital ferry pilot because low/no gravity was easier on her injuries. Then, she gets wrapped up in things beyond her control when the Davises' mission goes bust. But having her clomping around pretending to still be a Marine in body armor or heavy EVA suits, only with a crippling spinal injury to boot, is beyond silly. They needed to pick a character for Zula. Is she the Action Protagonist, or your "Crippled Woman Desperate to Prove Herself?"

    Then the subsequent stories for Zula Hendricks seem to forget about her back injury entirely.

    Also, apparently Ripley is no longer the winner of the "Worst Luck Always Encountering the Alien" award.  Also, how many times was the Alien encountered between the events of Alien and Aliens? So much for the ECA Rep saying "Never recorded once in over 300 surveyed worlds." Was it recorded on all of the other 300 worlds? Is their reporting and record-keeping system that bad? The Zula Hendricks "continuity" is probably one of the worst things in the garbled mess that is the Alien "canon." I'd be happy if she just went away at this point.

    Quote from: Still Collating... on Aug 17, 2022, 10:45:10 PMBut no, the magical goo can do anything, why care about consistency and logical changes, explanations etc.   
    I mean, you literally just described the plot twists of Prometheus and Covenant. Magical Goo is unfortunately inextricably tied to the Alien franchise at this point.
  14. Xiggz456
    Quote from: BlueMarsalis79 on Aug 17, 2022, 06:34:20 PMIt is... very unexpected and brings the whole thing down, even setting aside the fact it seemingly contradicts other materials, and undermines Alex White's excellent work...

    Even purely narratively it is difficult, because you get the sense the monsters can do whatever whenever required, perhaps it needs another read to take in. 

    I know you're going to not love this answer but if I recall correctly, the RPG mentions that different strains of Pathogen lead to different mutations. From neomorphs to abominations to body Bursters (Gibson aliens).

    In this story
    Spoiler
    it seemed more neomorphic with a bit of traditional Xeno mixed in. Perhaps a certain android has had a hand in this though.
    [close]
  15. Engineer
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 17, 2022, 11:40:03 PM
    Quote from: Engineer on Aug 17, 2022, 11:30:13 PM
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 17, 2022, 07:27:14 PM
    Quote from: Still Collating... on Aug 17, 2022, 03:51:07 PM
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 15, 2022, 08:23:14 AMWeren't the RPG maps taken from SM's designs?

    Yeah, that irked me as well when I saw it. I know certainly that a big part of the map was his work, if not the whole thing, don't know how much Clara added to that, but it's a shame that SM didn't get mentioned there.
    ... someone else got credited? SM not getting credit for his maps is par for the course but crediting someone else is trash by everyone involved.

    I'm suddenly glad I haven't picked up the RPG.

    SM's name is in the core rule book. Under the "special thanks to" credits. Clara started with his map, hence his "special thanks to" credit then expanded on the map to what it is in the book. Beyond that, anything else behind the scenes related to how he was credited exactly, I have no idea, but nonetheless he wasn't exactly uncredited, his name is there.
    What a pleasant change. Thank you!

    Clara is always good about pushing for people to get their due credit. She got my name credited in the core rule book too in the same section. But I don't think she had much say in how those credits were displayed, that'd be on Free League I suppose.
  16. SiL
    Quote from: Engineer on Aug 17, 2022, 11:30:13 PM
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 17, 2022, 07:27:14 PM
    Quote from: Still Collating... on Aug 17, 2022, 03:51:07 PM
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 15, 2022, 08:23:14 AMWeren't the RPG maps taken from SM's designs?

    Yeah, that irked me as well when I saw it. I know certainly that a big part of the map was his work, if not the whole thing, don't know how much Clara added to that, but it's a shame that SM didn't get mentioned there.
    ... someone else got credited? SM not getting credit for his maps is par for the course but crediting someone else is trash by everyone involved.

    I'm suddenly glad I haven't picked up the RPG.

    SM's name is in the core rule book. Under the "special thanks to" credits. Clara started with his map, hence his "special thanks to" credit then expanded on the map to what it is in the book. Beyond that, anything else behind the scenes related to how he was credited exactly, I have no idea, but nonetheless he wasn't exactly uncredited, his name is there.
    What a pleasant change. Thank you!
  17. Engineer
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 17, 2022, 07:27:14 PM
    Quote from: Still Collating... on Aug 17, 2022, 03:51:07 PM
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 15, 2022, 08:23:14 AMWeren't the RPG maps taken from SM's designs?

    Yeah, that irked me as well when I saw it. I know certainly that a big part of the map was his work, if not the whole thing, don't know how much Clara added to that, but it's a shame that SM didn't get mentioned there.
    ... someone else got credited? SM not getting credit for his maps is par for the course but crediting someone else is trash by everyone involved.

    I'm suddenly glad I haven't picked up the RPG.

    SM's name is in the core rule book. Under the "special thanks to" credits. Clara started with his map, hence his "special thanks to" credit then expanded on the map to what it is in the book. Beyond that, anything else behind the scenes related to how he was credited exactly, I have no idea, but nonetheless he wasn't exactly uncredited, his name is there.
  18. Still Collating...
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 17, 2022, 07:27:14 PM
    Quote from: Still Collating... on Aug 17, 2022, 03:51:07 PM
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 15, 2022, 08:23:14 AMWeren't the RPG maps taken from SM's designs?

    Yeah, that irked me as well when I saw it. I know certainly that a big part of the map was his work, if not the whole thing, don't know how much Clara added to that, but it's a shame that SM didn't get mentioned there.
    ... someone else got credited? SM not getting credit for his maps is par for the course but crediting someone else is trash by everyone involved.

    I'm suddenly glad I haven't picked up the RPG.

    Don't know if there's anything nefarious going on, I hope not, but the book just says Clara is a consultant known for her stellar cartography on the RPG. No mention of SM. Again, I don't know how much she added, but remembering SM's maps, it seems that a great deal was already done by him for the RPG. Just seems weird that such things happen. 

    I'm not sure, but I think the RPG Core Rule Book does give credit to SM, though I can't remember certainly.
    The rule book has been fantastic till now. Gaska really knows what he's doing IMO. Though some aspects of the final expansion and this book's RPG expansion give me concerns...

    Quote from: BlueMarsalis79 on Aug 17, 2022, 06:34:20 PMIt is... very unexpected and brings the whole thing down, even setting aside the fact it seemingly contradicts other materials, and undermines Alex White's excellent work...

    Even purely narratively it is difficult, because you get the sense the monsters can do whatever whenever required, perhaps it needs another read to take in. 

    Yeah, Alex White did great stuff with the Pathogen and the RPG made it seem like we're getting consistency and some realistic rules. And now we get mutant goo that creates anything the story needs, really Alien like creatures, but who gives a damn about the classic life cycle. I mean, if they wanted to go that rout, with all those xeno variants, just introducing eggs would've made everything okay. But no, the magical goo can do anything, why care about consistency and logical changes, explanations etc.   

  19. Crazy Rich
    Sounds like stealing to me.

    I've noticed in another case too how Disney is notorious for it, for example with Star Wars taking and using 3D models and art (that look great) but giving 0 credit to the fans that make this stuff
  20. SiL
    Quote from: Still Collating... on Aug 17, 2022, 03:51:07 PM
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 15, 2022, 08:23:14 AMWeren't the RPG maps taken from SM's designs?

    Yeah, that irked me as well when I saw it. I know certainly that a big part of the map was his work, if not the whole thing, don't know how much Clara added to that, but it's a shame that SM didn't get mentioned there.
    ... someone else got credited? SM not getting credit for his maps is par for the course but crediting someone else is trash by everyone involved.

    I'm suddenly glad I haven't picked up the RPG.
  21. BlueMarsalis79
    It is... very unexpected and brings the whole thing down, even setting aside the fact it seemingly contradicts other materials, and undermines Alex White's excellent work...

    Even purely narratively it is difficult, because you get the sense the monsters can do whatever whenever required, perhaps it needs another read to take in. 
  22. Still Collating...
    Quote from: SiL on Aug 15, 2022, 08:23:14 AMWeren't the RPG maps taken from SM's designs?

    Yeah, that irked me as well when I saw it. I know certainly that a big part of the map was his work, if not the whole thing, don't know how much Clara added to that, but it's a shame that SM didn't get mentioned there.

    Quote from: BlueMarsalis79 on Aug 17, 2022, 11:19:12 AMI feel exactly the same with one addition:

    Spoiler
    I do not like the portrayal of the Pathogen in this and do not think it improved the narrative either.
    [close]

    Just started reading it, first I read the RPG section, but the pathogen usage doesn't make me feel confident... That's what happens when creatives think that each new entry must have new types of Aliens. Firstly, it doesn't, secondly, I'm not against going crazy Kenner like if there are consistent rules.
    Spoiler
    But making Xenos out of pathogen? What? Why? How can a lore consultant let this through? If they are mutated Neomorph and Abomination variants, that's all okay with me. Though Neo's have their own specific life cycle, but okay. The RPG section literally mentions a guy turning into the Covenant xenomorph (The Body burster in Destroyer of Worlds at least had a good explanation), and that the other creatures are mutated into Xenomorphs by the Pathogen. But they're called Xenomorphs. I know that could be the general term, but it doesn't seem to be used like that here. Why couldn't they just be Abominations, or have the life cycle of the Neo's or Xeno's? If it's so easy to just bomb the place and turn creatures into actual Xeno's, how is that not a superiors version to the complicated traditional life cycle? If it was not the case that these are traditional XX121 Xenos, they sould've been more specific about that.
     
    They even have a weird explanation for the Prowler from AFE.

    Why has the Pathogen become the "whatever" virus that mutates things just because, without good explanations. What's the difference between this version and the Resident Evil virus then?

    I'd expect better from lore consultants. How did Gaska let this pass?
    [close]

  23. Ashen89
    Just finished this. It was my most anticipated of the three Alien books this year because I'm thirsty as hell for anything Engineer-y or with even a whiff of a continuation of the prequel arc.

    Overall I enjoyed it, even if there were a few things I was disappointed about.

    Spoiler

    Positives:
    The Knot, and Toru especially, were mostly excellently realised and interesting characters. Plenty of interesting ideas were adressed which helped to flesh out the world (e.g. being in love with an android, servitude/indenture, adoption). The oceanic sensibility was really refreshing, as was the focus on the combine and the different way of working life (as opposed to just generic WY colonists).

    The deaths of Nathan and Pinar in particular were given really strong emotional weight and the creeping personification of Mae was something I thought was handled well and set up plenty of future possibilities in universe.

    The Engineer ruins were intriguing and well envisioned, I wish there had been more exploring in this section of the book.

    Negatives:
    I thought most of the action sequences were a little lacklustre and hard to follow in the way they were described.

    The Engineer encounter was almost a carbon copy of the same scene from Prometheus and I was really disappointed that we didn't actually learn anything new about them from this novel as that was my biggest hope.

    As someone who hasn't read Prototype or Defiance I was a bit non-plussed about the Zula Hendricks sections, but that's more of a me problem.

    My main issue by far was the constant crowbarring in of names and model numbers of things, mostly weapons. It was really jarring, almost like overzealous product placement. I understand this was likely a Fox thing and not an author thing, they clearly want to tie-in to the RPG stuff, but it took me out of the story every time and made some of the dialogue sound really stilted.

    [close]

    I'd put it beneath Phalanx but above the rest (with the two Alex White novels standing head and shoulders above everything else at the top).

    7/10
  24. Kradan
    I liked parts that were dtawn by Tristan. f**king shame we didn't get another comic from him. f**k schedules, f**k deadlines, f**k Marvel, f**k Land, f**k Larroca, f**k everything
  25. Wompdonkey
    I like Zula and don't think she's been written too well in the past. I liked Defiance more than most people on this site it seems, but I agree that she was best in Prototype. I didn't think Prototype was great either, but Zula is one of like 3 characters the EU has focused on recently so I was geared up for a Zula story writtten by a woman and we did not get that. Idgaf about the Knot


    Quote from: Xiggz456 on Aug 16, 2022, 04:15:11 PMFinally finished! Overall I found the story enjoyable and found the new characters to be well fleshed out.

    Spoiler
    I do wish there was more Zula and Olivia action but with both being in leadership roles it makes sense for them to be more on the sidelines. Also quite liked Mae's arc on being a "free" synthetic and what comes with that. Some fun creature action but I think some of the descriptions could've been a bit clearer. Everyone might want to catch up on the RPG as there is some spoilery hints regarding the pathogen bombers!
    [close]

    I totally agree that a lot of the descriptions of the action and creatures could have been better. There were some cool moments in the book, but it wasn't written clearly enough. I had to imagine things instead of picturing what the book was saying.

    Overall solid story that uses a lot of elements from the RPG and FTE. 7.5/10

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