I love, love, love concepts Lebbon introduces in here. The whole idea of Rage is so refreshing and novel to me. I always dig the idea of an idealist society turning into blood-thirsty cult. I thought Beatrix Maloney was a great villain - I loved to hate her and it was so cool that the main baddy of the story was essentially few-centuries old crazy grandma lol
I wasn't overly impressed with a new alien species author introduced back in Out Of The Shadows but absolutely loved how they were used here. Idea of The Faze felt so ... alien to me and I loved it. I love the visuals of Rage ships exteriors and interiors changed by that thing as I saw it in my head. I think Lebbon was capable of creating something probably as mysterious as original SJ is.
I like how tehcnology was updated but still felt in keeping with what was established in Alien franchise before. Especialy the idea of Drop Holes and how crucial to the whole story they turned out to be.
I've just checked Xenopedia and it says that some of ideas Lebbon introduced here were "inspired" by Mass Effect. Oh well, don't really care for that series and frankly don't give a f**k
In terms of how Aliens were portrayed in the series - I'm usually not a fan of xenos being thrown in mass numbers but was fine with it here. I guess, unlike many other stories there just wasn't a scene with Colonial Marines absolutely dominating xenos with superior firepower, on contrary, each time Marines encountered xenos they were f**ked - so xenos still felt like a genuine threat. I also like how Aliens were used as weapon here and how it reflected wars of the past between other alien species. And I absolutely loved how there were entire ships turned into basically Aliens birth nurseries. It was bloody tense when our characters were thrown in such enviroment
I liked how Preds were portrayed here too. We learn something about them but they still remain unknown which is emphasized in the books. You're always not entirely sure what their motives and goals are. I thought "team-up" between humans and Predators was done justice 'cause it didn't feel like them being best buddies all of a sudden - Preds were still in it for themselves and uniting with people for as long as they had to to fight common enemy. Oh, and that sequence of Hashori relentlessly torturing Lylia was f**king brutal and I loved it. And that Pred bitch didn't even apologise for that later !
I found it's interesting how W-Y was portrayed in the series. On one hand, story of Tanns couple goes to show that there hasn't been much change in The Company since we last saw them in movies. But on the other, I liked how Gerard Marshall's character went against stereotypical company man and in the end genuinely tried to do the best for humanity
I dig the main cast of characters. As I said somewhere previously they're not particularly deep but I'd be damned if they're not hell of a lot of fun to read. As GD pointed out above there were a little bit too many throwaway characters. Especially near the end I felt like "Why do we keep going back to these characters if they're not essential to the main plot ?" But I kinda get the point that these characters were used as tools to broad the universe and give overall feeling of how big Human Sphere is