The Alien vs. Predator franchise, also known variously as Aliens vs. Predator, Aliens versus Predator and occasionally Aliens/Predator, commonly abbreviated as AVP, is a science fiction action franchise created as a crossover between the Alien and Predator franchises that focuses on confrontations between the two titular species, often with humanity caught in between. The franchise — and indeed the entire concept — started with an Aliens vs. Predator comic book short story published in Dark Horse Presents #36 in February 1990, and eventually led to a series of two films, Alien vs. Predator (2004) and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (2007).
Since the first comic story, numerous video games, novels and other comics have been produced. The first cinematic crossover between the two species actually took place in the 1990 film Predator 2, in which a Xenomorph skull is briefly glimpsed inside a Yautja trophy cabinet, although the creatures did not formally meet on the big screen until Alien vs. Predator in 2004. A common element appearing in the AVP franchise is the creature known as the Predalien, acting as a literal crossover between the two titular species.
Proper Franchise Name
Unlike the well-defined Alien and Predator franchises, the exact title of the Alien vs. Predator series has taken many slightly different forms over the course of its history, chiefly regarding the pluralization (or not) of "Alien" in the title. The current accepted format is Alien vs. Predator, denoting a crossover between the franchises spawned by the 1979 film Alien and the 1987 film Predator. However, the original title of the AVP concept, as created by Dark Horse Comics in 1989, was Aliens vs. Predator, stemming from the fact the series began as a crossover involving the company's Aliens comics line. This plural format remains by far the most commonly used with regards to the AVP comics, and is correct when referring to the comic line specifically.
However, for the first feature film based on the concept, the singular title Alien vs. Predator was used; at the time, several comic book spin-offs based on this film also adopted the singular title. The feature film sequel, meanwhile, used Aliens. Prior to 1999, video games based on the franchise used the singular Alien in the title, whereas the games since have chiefly (but not exclusively) opted for the plural Aliens.
Another point of contention is the exact form of the conjunction ("vs.") in the middle of the title. The forms "vs." and "versus" have both been used, as well as a simple slash ("/") in some cases. Originally, the first comics that launched the franchise used the form "vs.". Between mid-1995 and 1998, the expanded "versus" was primarily used, before the series reverted to the shortened "vs." in 1999 — many of the comics that originally used the longer form have since had their titles altered to use the shorter equivalent. By contrast, the use of a slash has been minimal, only appearing on two individual AVP comics. The use of a slash is, however, far more prevalent in the crossover comics, specifically those that introduce the Aliens to other characters (e.g. Batman/Aliens).
The two feature films have exclusively used "vs." in their titles, while video games have also primarily used the shortened version, with the notable exception of four games released between 1999 and 2003, which opted for the expanded "versus" form.
Alien vs. Predator (2004)
- Main article: Alien vs. Predator (film)
A group of scientists discover an ancient pyramid buried beneath the ice on an Antarctic island and launch an expedition to investigate, but are unaware the structure is used as a breeding ground for deadly alien creatures constructed by the Predators millennia ago for use in their hunts. The scientists and their mercenary protectors soon find themselves trapped in the middle of a war between the two extraterrestrial races and must fight to escape alive.
Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (2007)
- Main article: Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem
A deadly Predator-Alien creature spawned during events in Antarctica escapes into the small American town of Gunnison, Colorado and begins creating an army of Aliens. The Predators dispatch a ruthless hunter to clean up the infestation, leaving the town's unfortunate inhabitants caught in the crossfire.
As well as a novelization based on the first Alien vs. Predator film, there are several expanded universe novels based on the Alien vs. Predator series. The first and third of these are adaptations of Aliens vs. Predator comic books from Dark Horse Comics; the others are original stories.
- Aliens vs. Predator: Prey by Steve Perry and Stephani Perry
- Aliens vs. Predator: Hunter's Planet by David Bischoff
- Aliens vs. Predator: War by S. D. Perry
- Alien vs. Predator: Armageddon by Tim Lebbon
- Main article: Aliens vs. Predator (comics line)
Dark Horse Comics has published several original comic book stories set in the Alien vs. Predator universe.
- Aliens vs. Predator (1989 short story)
- Aliens vs. Predator (series)
- Aliens vs. Predator (1991 short story)
- Aliens vs. Predator 2
- Aliens vs. Predator: Deadliest of the Species
- Aliens vs. Predator: Blood Time
- Aliens vs. Predator: Duel
- Aliens vs. Predator: War
- Aliens vs. Predator: Booty
- Aliens vs. Predator: Eternal
- Aliens vs. Predator: Annual #1
- Aliens vs. Predator: The Web
- Aliens vs. Predator: Xenogenesis
- Alien vs. Predator: Thrill of the Hunt
- Alien vs. Predator: Civilized Beasts
- Alien vs. Predator: Sand Trap
- Aliens vs. Predator: Deadspace
- Aliens vs. Predator: Three World War
- Alien vs. Predator: Fire and Stone
- Alien vs. Predator: Life and Death
Trading Cards/Card Games
There have also been numerous video games based on the series, some of which have been adaptations of the films.
- Alien vs Predator (1993)
- Alien vs Predator: The Last of His Clan
- Alien vs Predator (1994 Jaguar)
- Alien vs. Predator (1994 arcade)
- Aliens versus Predator
- Aliens versus Predator 2/Primal Hunt
- Aliens versus Predator: Extinction
- Alien vs. Predator (2004 Superscape)
- Alien vs. Predator (2004 Wicked Witch Software)
- Alien vs. Predator 3D
- Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem
- Alien vs. Predator 2 2D: Requiem
- Aliens vs. Predator (2010)
- Aliens vs. Pinball
- The concept of combining the Alien and Predator franchises originated with a brainstorming session amongst Dark Horse Comics executives the late 1980s. According to Dark Horse founder Mike Richardson, editor Chris Warner is the man who first proposed the idea.
- AVP Zone at the DarkHorse.com
- Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem official film website
- Aliens vs. Predator Universe at SEGA.com
- Aliens vs. Predator (2010) at SEGA.com
- Predator - The Hunted - a well-researched, well-written Predator fan site that has a lot of information about AVP as well.
- Absolute AVP - an active fan site with lots of information.
- AVP Galaxy - an active fan site with lots of information.
- AlienvsPredator2 - an active fan site with lots of information.