After three hours of playing Aliens: Colonial Marines I can say myself that had the game not drawn as much negative press as it has, I wouldn't be scrutinizing it like I find myself doing now. A simple stack of negative reviews with a spotting of positives scores is not at all what it would take for me to pass on any experience that is supposed to be direct canon to one of my all time beloved science fiction horror franchises! Hell no! As launch day neared I don't know if there was anything in the news about the games many missed opportunities or if I simply had not come across this info while doing my daily surf of the usual gaming sites, including NeoGAF.
As late as Friday before launch I was dead set on buying the Xbox 360 version since I had a $20 credit at GameStop. Then I started to see reports of people who obtained copies for both consoles (PS3 and 360, Wii U is postponed??) and they all said the same alarming thing, these versions were some of the ugliest shit they have witness this late in the generation! Even though I would normally think about my GamerScore like some fucking OCD nerd, this time I right away spanked the console purchase option and read up on the PC version.
Granted, the PC version isn't nearly the quality of even the Aliens Vs Predator release of 2010 when visually speaking. But it is better looking than the console version mostly due to downsampling 2560x1440 to 1080p. It is not better looking than the demo for this game that Gearbox showed off at E3! There are screens of that E3 demo floating around the nets with the comparitive part in the released version and the difference in most cases is staggering. Mind blown in fact. The demo is what we should have been shipped, not the other way around! I even think you can find video of the demo version versus the released version on YouTube showcasing exact locations with various differences ranging from lack of ALIENS in one of the most glaring shots, to total lighting meltdown where the demo looked eerily similarly dark to the Aliens universe but out retail copy looks like total shit. But I am not that technical and my terms elude me when speaking about what I am seeing on screen and what differences I can detect. This subject matter here is unlike most because the faults are so glaring they almost smack me upside the head when they pop onscreen. In other words, you don't have to look hard to see the changes this game has gone through since we were led to believe the franchise was in perfect hands at Gearbox. (Edit: I dug up the NeoGAF thread which shows the demo vs. retail differences)
Aside from the topic above, there is currently a lot of speculation as to actually who made the game! That is some absurd shit if you ask me, but TimeGate Studios (Section 8 guys!) claims to have built 80% and Gearbox says, "No, they only did like, 20%..." and back and forth they go. I'm sure the truth will come out soon enough but for now, nobody really can say who is responsible for creating this game. Some speculate SEGA should seek some legal action for this bullshit that has transpired, which without a shadow of a doubt will NOT boost sales a damn bit.
I could go on, but I'd really like to finish the game, and then maybe I'll reopen this post, or make a new one, filled with my final thoughts on what may be the first big bomb of 2013.