Aliens vs Predator 2 is the third game of the Alien vs. Predator franchise. As with the previous game, it features three playable campaigns, one each for the Aliens, the Predators and the Colonial Marines. Unlike the previous title, however, the campaigns are all related and take place at the same time and in the same location, and while they never actually engage with each other, characters from different campaigns occasionally cross paths. Sierra released an expansion to the game titled Aliens versus Predator 2: Primal Hunt in 2002. A further unrelated sequel, Aliens vs. Predator, followed in 2010.
Almost half a century after the events of Aliens and Alien3, the Weyland-Yutani Corporation followed the flight telemetry of the derelict found on Acheron (LV-426) and discovered a world full of life and dotted with the ruins of an extraterrestrial civilization—and infested with Xenomorphs. This planet would become known as LV-1201. The company establishes a long-term research facility under Dr. Eisenberg to study the planet, the ruins, and the Aliens. The facility consists of a Primary Operations Complex and a network of five massive Forward Observation Pods suspended over a canyon.
- Main article: Aliens versus Predator 2 characters
- An unnamed Warrior is the playable Xenomorph character in the game. A both intelligent and aggressive Xenomorph, it caused the incident on LV-1201 in attempting to escape from the Primary Operations Complex back to the Hive.
- Corporal Andrew "Frosty" Harrison is the playable human character in the game. A Colonial Marine, he is characterized by a refusal to abandon his fellow Marines. Other than combat, Harrison specializes in electronics and is also qualified to pilot an Exosuit.
- Prince is the playable Yautja character in the game. 19 years before, he and his clan attacked a Weyland-Yutani outpost, where he chased and downed a Colonial Marine known as Rykov. Now, knowing Rykov is still alive, the Predator has come to LV-1201 to finish the job.
- Dr. Arnaud Eisenberg is the head researcher in charge of the LV-1201 facility. He was the only survivor of a disastrous first expedition; when a massive storm cut off his outpost's security systems and communications, he was forced to kill and eat his colleagues. He serves as the primary antagonist of the Alien campaign.
- General Vassili Rykov is the head of the Iron Bears or "Corporates", a group of private military contractors employed by Weyland-Yutani. He serves as the primary antagonist of the Predator campaign.
- The Empress is the primary Xenomorph Queen on LV-1201. Eisenberg's efforts are focussed on capturing and controlling her. She is larger than the younger Queens. She is the main antagonist of the Marine campaign.
- Major McCain is the commanding officer of the Colonial Marines dispatched to LV-1201 at Weyland-Yutani's request. He is a fine leader, but is oblivious to what Rykov and Eisenberg have in store for him and his Marines.
An introductory flashback shows that Dr. Eisenberg was the only survivor of the first scientific expedition to LV-1201, which was decimated by the Xenomorphs. Eisenberg himself was forced to cannibalize his colleagues in order to survive until a rescue ship could arrive.
Ten years later and now in charge of the research facility on LV-1201, Eisenberg finds himself under increasing pressure from Weyland-Yutani, who have sent an auditor to oversee the problems at the facility, problems that include artefacts going missing, unauthorized research and even the complete loss of one of the outlying facilities, known as Pod 5 (the events of which are seen in the Primal Hunt expansion pack). The oversight committee is getting worried, although Eisenberg insists he will rectify the issues.
Meanwhile, Major Dunya of the Iron Bears delivers a large container to Captain Richter of the cargo vessel Aurora; Richter has been smuggling artefacts stolen by the Iron Bears off-world. Noting that the crate is larger than normal, he attempts to scan it, but finds the container is shielded against scanning. Richter is called away to a meeting with General Rykov, and during refuelling of the Aurora the crate is knocked over, revealing a Xenomorph Egg within. The disturbed Egg hatches and the player-controlled Facehugger emerges. The Facehugger leaves the ship through umbilical ductwork and begins to track an irritable guard, Cisco, through the Primary Operations Complex (POC). When Cisco retires to his quarters for a nap, the Facehugger springs on him and impregnates him.
In due time, the player-controlled Chestburster hatches, killing Cisco. It flees through an open window and proceeds through the POC until it finds nourishment — cats apparently kept for research purposes. It feeds and rapidly molts into a full-grown Warrior. The Warrior immediately begins fighting its way through the POC, releasing other Xenomorphs being kept as test subjects along the way. It reaches the lower levels, finally encountering a Predator that has been stalking it, probably believing it would make a suitable challenge. The Predator activates its Self-Destruct Device when the Warrior mortally wounds it, and the resulting explosion breaches the POC's drainage system, allowing the Warrior to escape. At the same time, the breach also allows thousands of Xenomorphs into the POC, and the research personnel quickly send a distress call to the United States Colonial Marine Corps.
Six weeks later, the Warrior and its brethren infiltrate one of the facility's Pods during a brief security failure unwittingly caused by Corporal Harrison, part of the recently arrived USCM taskforce. As the Xenomorphs attack, they kill several Iron Bear troopers, including Dimitri. The player-controlled Warrior takes the opportunity to wreak havoc, killing dozens of guards and scientists, releasing a Predalien, and finally liberating an entire artificial Hive created by the research team within the Pod. Along the way, it also kills several scientists who are preparing to impregnate a captured Predator, known as Prince, with a Chestburster.
Eisenberg has taken advantage of the Marines' arrival to initiate the Large Mass Specimen Extraction, a project to capture the Xenomorph Empress. As part of the plan, combat synthetics have wired explosive charges throughout the tunnels of the Hive. Learning of this, the Warrior leaves the Pods and rushes to disable the explosives.
Despite the Warrior's efforts, the Empress is captured by the science team. The Warrior pursues her captors, including Eisenberg himself, tracking through an archaeological site to a dropship landing pad, killing numerous guards, civilians and Iron Bears along the way. At the pad, the Warrior kills two Predators and sabotages the pad's support machinery, causing the dropship to crash. Furious, Eisenberg attacks the Warrior directly, although he is quickly overpowered. A final cutscene reveals that Eisenberg (in his current incarnation) is actually an android, and he has been cocooned within the Empress' chamber. His limbs have been removed and his screams echo through the Hive, as a Queen and the Warrior gloat.
The player controls Corporal Harrison, a Marine aboard the Conestoga-class USS Verloc, which is carrying a small contingent of Colonial Marines to LV-1201 under the command of Major McCain in response to a distress call sent from the research station there. Their mission is to rescue survivors and secure the facility until the 6th Battalion can arrive in force.
Upon arrival, two dropships are deployed to the Primary Operations Complex (POC), but they are separated by hurricane winds and one is damaged. Harrison, with Red Team, is tasked with restoring power and activating a landing beacon to facilitate further airborne operations. While trying to restore the local security grid, he awakens the Xenomorphs that had lain dormant following their conquest of the POC. Most of the Marines are able to evacuate, but Sergeant Hall is captured by the Xenomorphs. Harrison tracks her to an area of the POC that has been converted to a Hive, but he finds that Hall has already been impregnated with a Chestburster. She dies as Harrison finds her.
With the POC now relatively secure, Red Team attempts to reach the Pods in search of survivors, leaving White Team behind. Harrison is sent ahead through the tunnel network that connects the POC to the Pods so that he can deactivate the security measures that are preventing the Marines' APCs from proceeding. However, in the process, he accidentally cuts the security to the Pods themselves, allowing the Xenomorphs, including one particularly dangerous Warrior, to attack.
When Red Team reaches the Pods, Dr. Eisenberg and General Rykov inform them that three archaeological teams have been stranded within a massive nearby Hive as a result of the security breach. The Marines volunteer to rescue the archaeologists — but the "rescue mission" is actually part of an elaborate plot by Rykov and Eisenberg to kill the Marines themselves.
As Harrison tries to establish a communication link with the POC and the orbiting Verloc, he is attacked by Major Dunya of the Iron Bears, whose fiancé Dimitri was killed when the Pods were breached by the Xenomorphs — as Harrison unintentionally caused the breach, she holds him responsible for Dimitri's death. She knocks the Corporal out and throws him into a prison cell within the Pods, used to hold convict laborers, telling his comrades that he was killed in a confrontation with an escaped convict. Harrison soon escapes, and during his flight he kills an escaped Predalien and unknowingly releases the Predator Prince from captivity. Later, Harrison is contacted by a mysterious person using a voice scrambler, and is instructed to pick up a data disk hidden in one of the labs in exchange for help returning to his team. Reluctantly, Harrison complies.
As Harrison reaches the Pod's lowest levels, he sees Prince escape by hijacking a dropship. Harrison picks up new equipment and kills Rykov's right hand man Ivan, along with two other Iron Bears, before eliminating another mercenary in an "Exosuit", a bipedal armored combat vehicle. His way now clear, he finally escapes the Pods.
Returning to the POC to find White Team, Harrison learns that the mysterious person who directed him to recover the data disk is Tomiko, an assemblyman's daughter who signed up for an internship on LV-1201 to find out what had happened to her brother, who she suspects was murdered. The data disk contains records of all the illegal activities taking place on the planet, which Tomiko wants to present to her father in an attempt to hold Weyland-Yutani accountable for its crimes.
Harrison locates several members of White Team, but they are all killed by Xenomorphs or Predators before Harrison can activate the landing beacon for an incoming dropship. Harrison manages to kill a Predator himself before reaching the dropship. Tomiko transmits the coordinates of an old entry site to the Hive, and Harrison, now in his own Exosuit, proceeds after his fellow Marines whom Rykov has stranded within. Along the way, he must clear an infestation from some ancient extraterrestrial technology. His Exosuit is damaged during a fall, forcing him to proceed the rest of the way on foot. He locates his team in a massive chamber where the fossilized remains of an Engineer reside. A Xenomorph Queen attacks the squad, but Harrison is able to repel her so that he and the rest of the Marines can escape via dropship. The Queen attacks again, but the dropship bombards her with missiles, killing her.
As the dropship puts distance between itself and the Hive, Tomiko overloads the fusion reactors in the Pods, destroying the research facility and apparently killing herself. When the Marines return to the Verloc, McCain recommends abandoning any further rescue or salvage attempts on LV-1201, and the ship departs.
Nineteen years before the events of the game, Vassili Rykov is a Colonial Marine stationed at a Weyland-Yutani outpost on the planet Korari when it is attacked by a Predator, a high-ranking clan member known as Prince. Prince severely injures Rykov, paralyzing him, but he survives the attack, although he requires extensive surgery, including the implantation of an artificial spine. The events leave Rykov with a deep-seated, obsessive hatred for the Predators.
Nineteen years later, Prince lands on LV-1201 for a hunt with two clan members. Owing to Prince's status, he is equipped with better armor, a more elaborate Bio-Mask and more potent weaponry than his clan mates. After a quick human slaughter and a meeting with other Predators, who provide new weaponry, Prince discovers that his two clan mates have been captured by the Iron Bears. Pursuing the mercenaries into the research facility, the Predator eventually succumbs to experimental elctro-magnetic pulse grenades which render his equipment useless and result in his capture.
Rykov, now a General and in charge of the Iron Bears stationed on LV-1201, places Prince in a lab where he remains in stasis for over six weeks. During this time, Rykov learns that he has captured the very individual responsible for his injuries on Korari, and the General seizes his chance to exact his revenge, intending for Prince to die slowly and painfully. Prince is subjected to a myriad of virulent diseases, although his advance immune system renders him largely unaffected. An attempt to impregnate him with a Chestburster is also thwarted by a Xenomorph Warrior. Finally, Prince is inadvertently released by Corporal Harrison and, despite the infections he is suffering from, powers through a horde of humans, reclaims his equipment and sets off in pursuit of Rykov.
After a dramatic escape aboard a dropship, Prince fights through the Xenomorph infested caves and tunnels beneath the research facility and eventually manages to signal his clan using human technology. The Predator clan promptly arrive and re-arm Prince, who then sets off to finish Rykov once and for all. Following Rykov, now encased in an Exosuit, deep into the Xenomorph Hive, Prince fights his way into the heart of the Hive for a climatic battle with General Rykov. Overcoming his enemy, the Predator claims Rykov's synthetic spine as his trophy after twenty years of chase.
In a final cut scene, the USS Verloc is seen departing LV-1201 with the surviving Colonial Marines aboard. As it heads into deep space, the Predators can be seen stalking the ship in their own sleek battleship, chasing their next hunt.
- Corporal Andrew "Frosty" Harrison .... Todd Licea
- Major McCain .... Jock Blaney
- Duke Morrison .... John Armstrong
- Sergeant Blackwell .... John Armstrong
- Dimitri .... John Armstrong
- Jones .... David Scully
- Ivan Hushvatov .... David Scully
- Tomiko .... Jen Taylor
- Major Dunya .... Andromeda Dunker
- General Vassili Rykov .... Jeff Steitzer
- Dr. Eisenberg .... Gary Schwartz
Similarly to the previous Aliens versus Predator video game, Aliens versus Predator 2 is primarily a first-person shooter (FPS) that uniquely gives the player a choice of three characters/species — the Alien, the Predator and the Colonial Marine — each of which his its own distinct set of weapons and abilities. The storyline additionally features a fourth, non-playable faction, the Iron Bears or "Corporates", a heavily-armed mercenary group working for the Weyland-Yutani Corporation. The Iron Bears are a playable faction in the game's multilayer component, although gameplay-wise they are largely similar to the Colonial Marines.
The gameplay remains similar to the preceding game, although there have been some changes made to each species: for example, the Predator now has the ability to recharge his own energy, the Alien can now destroy objects in the environment and the Marine has gained several new weapons, along with the ability to pilot an "Exosuit" combat mech for one level.
Another new feature of the game compared to previous titles is the fact that each of it's three campaigns are concurrent and interwoven. Although the three player characters never actually fight each other (for obvious gameplay reasons), they do occasionally cross paths and influence each other's journey. Notable examples include:
- The Warrior causes the security breach in the POC that leads to the USCM being called to LV-1201.
- Harrison unwittingly causes the security failure that allows the Warrior into the Pods.
- The Warrior kills scientists preparing to impregnate Prince with a Chestburster.
- Harrison unintentionally releases Prince from captivity.
- The Alien Drones in the game in fact resemble Warriors.
- Aliens versus Predator 2 marks the first appearance of the Runner caste in the AVP series of video games.
- The Alien3 character Michael Weyland is mentioned in some of the messages found in the Pods.
- The idea of prisoners being used in experiments with the Xenomorphs, which is touched upon in the game, originates from the unproduced Alien3 script by David Twohy.
- ↑ Text logs found in the game confirm the first LV-1201 expedition took place in 2221-2222