Alien: Fireteam Elite Tips And Tricks

Game Over Man!

Aliens: Fireteam Elite just released a few days ago, giving us a third-person survival shooter starring one of the most horrific enemies that sci-fi has ever created. The Xenomorphs from the Alien franchise are fearless, advancing towards their prey even as their body is being torn apart by a hailstorm of bullets. And if you do kill one, it always seems like there are two more ready to continue the charge. And let’s not forget that their acidic blood is still a threat even after you send one to the grave.

With the odds stacked against you before you even get started, missions in Aliens: Fireteam Elite can be a tough nut to crack. While playing through the missions and checking out the Horde Mode for my review, I learned a few things along the way to help turn the odds in my favor. Every Colonial Marine deserves a fighting chance, so I’m going to share them with you. Good luck out there soldier!

Always Be On The Move

It always feels like you are about to run out of ammo in Aliens: Fireteam Elite. Shooting in short bursts with your automatic weapons helps reserve ammo. Swapping to your close-range weapon to take out multiple enemies at once (more on this later) can conserve your precious bullets as well. But there is one sure-fire way to save on ammunition, and that is to always keep moving.

You see, there’s one thing that Xenomorphs can’t stand, and that is a lazy Marine. Stand around talking in one place and you’re sure to attract a Xeno patrol. Now, three or four Runners inbound on your position isn’t really a threat in and of itself. Having to expend a clip of ammo to take them out is the real problem. And if that first group of Xenos wasn’t enough to get you moving, there will be another headed your way shortly. Another group, another twenty or thirty bullets.

Unlike your favorite RPG, enemies in Aliens: Fireteam Elite don’t magically drop loot when they die, just a pool of acid. Without any way to resupply until you reach an ammo crate – and there aren’t that many to be found during a mission – it is very easy to use up all of your ammo if you aren’t careful. So get off your butt and get moving, Marine!

Save Your Consumables

As you start playing through missions, you’ll quickly realize that much of your time is spent simply taking on small groups of enemies as you travel from point A to point B. Once at point B, you enter a defense stage, where you will stand your ground and fight through multiple waves of enemies before moving on to point C, D, and so on until you get to the final boss fight.

When you enter one of those defense points and the game tells you to prepare, it’s only natural that you will want to set up a defense perimeter, laying down mines and setting up sentry guns to prepare for the impending swarms of enemies. AFE even urges you to do so by placing consumable chests at each of these spots.

Don’t do it, though! Most of these defensive battles are quite simple, and there’s always a med pack waiting there so you can heal back up if you take a lot of damage. 

It’s better to hold onto any consumables you have until you are near the end of a mission. Many times that last battle will involve waves full of elite enemies, and that extra sentry gun you used to make one of the earlier encounters easier could be the difference between completing the mission and a party wipe.

So how do you know when to use those shock mines and turrets? First, listen for a roar. That’s a sign that one of the big baddies is headed your way. You can also double-check your radar. Regular enemies such as Runners show up as white dots, and the elites like Bursters and Spitters show up as blue. 

When you see a red dot on the radar, that’s when you know something big like a Praetorian or Crusher is on the way. That’s when you should lay down a mine or two. More than one red dot? Put down everything you have left and load up any elemental bullets you have in your inventory, you’re gonna need all the help you can get!

Don’t Forget About Your CQW

In many games, your secondary weapon is often just a fallback, something to use when your primary weapon runs out of bullets and your enemy is about ready to drop. Instead of taking the time to reload, you quickly switch to your other weapon to take it out, then swap back and reload in preparation for your next foe.

In Aliens: Fireteam Elite, your second weapon is much more important. Except for the Demolisher which gets to carry a badass heavy weapon in their second slot, the other classes all have a CQW – close-quarters weapon. These include shotguns, short-range but quick rate of fire submachine guns, and even a flame thrower. Most of these weapons have smaller clips than your primary weapon, but make up for that by having high damage or a wider cone of fire that hits multiple targets at once. This makes them perfect for those times when multiple enemies get up close and personal with you.

While the accuracy of a pistol or rifle can help you zoom in and pick off enemies from afar, swapping to your CQW and hip-firing a few rounds is usually all it takes to clear out for or five Runners that made it past your perimeter defenses. Just be sure to watch out for any acid their exploding bodies leaves behind.

Bring Friends

When playing solo, your Synth companions Alpha and Beta can hold their own during most of the early missions. However, their limitations are revealed when you get into some of the harder fights. They seem to have separation anxiety and will follow you around wherever you go, making flipping switches or pulling levers during boss fights that much more difficult. And although their programming ensures they will try to revive you if you go down, sometimes they just need to let you lie there long enough to clear out any immediate threats.

Bringing a full team of human players eliminates this issue, making your team much stronger than when you play solo. Human players can coordinate their defenses, breaking the battlefield into thirds to allow each person to focus on only part of the fight when things are easy. Then, when stuff hits the fan, players can shift their attention to whatever the priority target is at the moment.

There’s also the added benefit of having the skills of multiple classes. Alpha and Beta both utilize the Gunner class, so you’ll never have a trio of classes when you play solo. Grab a couple of friends and you can get a trinity of classes and all of the special abilities that come with them. It may not sound like a big deal, but the more diverse your group is, the better prepared you will be for whatever challenges you encounter.

Unlock All The Perks

Most players will gravitate towards one, possibly two classes while playing Aliens: Fireteam Elite. It’s not a bad strategy, either. Your team not only gains the benefit that comes with each member playing a different class, but you also unlock the full potential of opening up the full perk grid at level seven. You’ll still want to get the other classes to level two as soon as possible, though. By doing so, you unlock the core perks of each class, which you can then use to make your main class that much more powerful.

Challenge Accepted

It takes a lot of experience points to level up your character and their weapons. Raising the difficulty level is one way to speed up the experience gain, but it’s not the only way. It may not be the easiest, either.

Before each mission, be sure to check and see if you have any Challenge Cards that you want to play. Some cards bring with them some pretty hefty penalties, like changing all of the regular enemies to Bursters or causing weapons to constantly jam. Others aren’t quite so difficult, like changing the graphics to black and white or slowing down your stamina regeneration. You might even come across some beneficial cards such as one that doubles your health.

The more difficult the challenge you choose, the greater your reward. Easy challenges might only give a 25% increase to experience or credits for completing the mission, while some of the nastier cards can double your rewards. And while cards that give benefits instead of increasing the difficulty don’t give you any extra rewards, they may be the boost you need to complete a mission that you can’t conquer otherwise.

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