Alien: Isolation is a pretty rad game (a surprising rarity when it comes to this franchise), so it’s a very good new avenue for NECA to explore in their seminal Aliens action figure line. The game stars Ellen Ripley’s daughter, Amanda, years after her mom’s disappearance aboard the Nostromo. As fate would have it, Amanda not only encounters clues as to her mother’s fate, but a new Xenomorph, as well.
I won’t delve too much more into the game, but I will say that NECA’s all-Isolation lineup in Aliens Series 6 makes the most sense, both thematically and in terms of budget. Amanda has two main looks in Isolation, a brown jumpsuit and a yellow pressure suit, so NECA has retooled their existing movie Aliens figures to fit both outfits for the video game protagonist.
The jumpsuit Amanda features an all new head, sculpted to fit the character’s likeness from the game. I like the headset Amanda wears, and her profile is great, although the face seems somewhat pinched when looking at her dead-on from the front. The younger Ripley reuses Ellen’s torso and legs, but sports newly sculpted arms with short sleeves and different insignias on the shoulders. The new parts are very cohesive with the existing ones, and the final result makes Amanda feel very much of this universe (and toy line), without feeling like a carbon copy of Ellen.
Amanda includes the same model flame thrower that Ripley used on the Nostromo, as well as an all new motion tracker as seen in Isolation, and a backpack with a sling which fits over the figure’s shoulder.
The pressure suit is one of the coolest designs in a franchise absolutely crawling with great designs, so I’m glad to see NECA getting some mileage out of their very good sculpt of it. Amanda’s suit is yellow, a pallet we haven’t seen before for these heavy space suits, and it works quite well. While the body and helmet are exactly the same as the previous pressure suits, Amanda gets a nice new headsculpt (one that does not suffer from the pinching of the jumpsuit head), as well as the semi-futuristic gun she uses.
It wouldn’t be much of an Aliens line without the creatures making an appearance, and the Isolation style Xenomorph is another very effective retool. The creature from the game shares the overall look of the monster aboard the Nostromo, but with different, hock-jointed legs. In keeping with this look, NECA’s Isolation Alien is a repaint of the Big Chap from the knees up, combined with all new shins, lower legs, and feet to capture the hock jointed legs of the game creature.
The Isolation Xenomorph also features a great new paint job, giving it a shiny, gunmetal grey highlight, as well as some subtle changes to the head, most notably the purple-tinted dome and the bone colored ridges that extend all the way to the back of the head now. The hock joint legs don’t offer quite as much stability as the more humanoid legs of the original figure, but NECA has taken care of this potential issue by including a clear display stand to help support the Alien.
Aliens is a franchise that already includes a pretty large cast of characters and creatures, but I’m very glad to see NECA still coming up with new ways to keep the line fresh. Between this Isolation themed line and the first Kenner tribute Aliens coming in 2016, NECA seems committed to covering many corners of the Xenomorph universe in plastic, and for that I am grateful.