Gaming's biggest movie rip-offs

Can't get the license? Make the game anyway!

Perpetrator: Alien Breed | Commodore Amiga/PC

Alien may well be the most influential movie ever made as far as videogames go. Everything from Metroid to Doom to Half-Life to Resident Evil 4 has taken inspiration from it. Escapes to the sound of a bomb counting down... Creepy vent duct gunplay... Horribly jumpy, spindly little monsters that want to eat your head... Alien did them all first and gaming is lot better off as a result. Ridley Scott, Dan O' Bannon and HR Giger, we salute you.

But few games have been more flagrant recreations of the movie series than Team 17's Alien Breed. Released for the Commodore Amiga in 1991, Alien Breed could almost have been construed as a reskinned Aliens mod for Gauntlet. Featuring frantic top-down gameplay of the sci-fi horror variety, it was like Doom's 2D uncle, but whereas that game's monsters were all of the hellspawn persuasion, Alien Breed's took another very clear inspiration.

The gloomy grey spacestations were one thing, but once they were populated with swarms of black, bug-like monsters with elongated heads that came out of holes in the ground, there was no doubt that Alien Breed was a classic case of "Movie present, licence missing." And covering the floors in black swirly, tentacled bio-filth? Brave move boys, very brave.

But few games have been more flagrant recreations of the movie series than Team 17's Alien Breed. Released for the Commodore Amiga in 1991, Alien Breed could almost have been construed as a reskinned Aliens mod for Gauntlet. Featuring frantic top-down gameplay of the sci-fi horror variety, it was like Doom's 2D uncle, but whereas that game's monsters were all of the hellspawn persuasion, Alien Breed's took another very clear inspiration.

The gloomy grey spacestations were one thing, but once they were populated with swarms of black, bug-like monsters with elongated heads that came out of holes in the ground, there was no doubt that Alien Breed was a classic case of "Movie present, licence missing." And covering the floors in black swirly, tentacled bio-filth? Brave move boys, very brave.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Long-time GR+ writer Dave has been gaming with immense dedication ever since he failed dismally at some '80s arcade racer on a childhood day at the seaside (due to being too small to reach the controls without help). These days he's an enigmatic blend of beard-stroking narrative discussion and hard-hitting Psycho Crushers.
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