Come February 12, Aliens: Colonial Marines will burst onto store shelves like a gore-slicked xenomorph from the chest of John Hurt. This being 2013, it seems a foregone conclusion that the game would eventually see additional downloadable content, and while the assumption has long been in place we hadn’t seen any official confirmation of such until this morning.
The first DLC release for Aliens: Colonial Marines bears the title of “Bug Hunt,” and is slated to appear at an as-yet-unrevealed point in March. There’s currently no information on Bug Hunt’s price tag, though the announcement also details the game’s season pass which indicates that Bug Hunt should set you back $10 if purchased by itself. Whether or not the DLC is worth that amount of money is another question entirely. “Bug Hunt will throw players into an all-new multiplayer mode where they have to take on waves of increasingly difficult enemies in three brand new maps based on environments from the Aliens film.” reads the official announcement from publisher Sega.
Based on that description, it appears that this DLC is the Aliens: Colonial Marines equivalent of Gears of War’s fan-favorite Horde mode. As fans of that franchise will attest, joining forces with pals to fight off increasingly larger waves of enemies is a tense, satisfying experience that drives the human brain to constantly seek higher scores. The effectiveness of Bug Hunt should only be enhanced by its subject matter: The creatures in Aliens: Colonial Marines are not just fast and equipped with caustic acid blood, they can also climb along walls and ceilings. This should prevent human players from setting up viable chokepoints – a commonly used strategy in Gears of War – and with enough affection and care put into the design of the Bug Hunt DLC this multiplayer mode might just replicate the tension of its theatrical inspiration.
Then again, maybe the Bug Hunt DLC isn’t for you. Maybe you’re one of those people who hates playing multiplayer. In that case, the silver lining here is that Sega announced the Aliens: Colonial Marines season pass alongside the Bug Hunt DLC. Featuring a $30 price point regardless of platform, the announcement claims that this marks a 40-percent reduction on the costs you’d face by buying the Aliens: Colonial Marines DLC piecemeal. While we’ve yet to hear official word on any of the DLC packs beyond Bug Hunt, this pricing scheme indicates that there will likely be several more DLC packs popping up at some point in the future.
Finally, a few moments after all of the above information was issued to the public, Sega also announced an agreement it has signed with Walmart, giving the mega-retailer the ability to reward those who either purchase or pre-order Aliens: Colonial Marines with a totally gratis copy of the Bug Hunt DLC.