Oh Yes: New Natural Selection 2 Trailer Is Pure Chaos

Wakka wakka wakka wakka.

I feel like having your eyes located inside your mouth – just behind a jagged row of teeth that probably uses live sharks as dental floss – would pigeon hole you a bit from a career standpoint. Such is the plight of Natural Selection 2‘s Skulk aliens, and yet, they seem to do rather well for themselves within their small area of chompy expertise – at least, if Natural Selection 2’s latest trailer is any indication. This time around, the asymmetrical puny, mechanically assisted humans vs horrifying aliens (some of whom are colossal elephant monsters) action takes place on a new map called Docking, which should be available to closed beta players any time now. It’s a positively gorgeous mix of red-hued industrialism, green alien goop, and, er, some form of shooting range/basketball court, but the shooty, bitey, bleedy goodness is the real star here. Check out the madness after the break.

Currently, Natural Selection 2’s listing “summer 2012” as its release date, which a quick glance at a calendar would tell you is roughly nowish – if anyone used calendars anymore. So expect it soon. In the meantime, pre-ordering will get you into the closed beta.

I very desperately hope to try this as soon as possible. For now, though, has anyone else lived the virtual life of Bitey McMouthFace? Is Natural Selection 2 shaping up to be as promising as it looks?


  1. Torgen says:

    I would buy this on day 1 at full price simply to order pizza, sit back and spectate games, if they’d allow spectators that didn’t take away a player’s spot

    • SelfEsteemFund says:

      I already do exactly that, well only for about 5 minutes until I’m kicked.

    • Starky says:

      I’ve already bought it as I was quite involved with the UK Natural Selection scene (as small as it was) one of the few games I’ve ever bothered getting really good at (except skulk, I could never skulk – my fade and my Onos were something to be feared though).

      But yeah, anyway – don’t worry, many people will be streaming the game to twitch.tv – and most major games will probably have an observer (hell if not I’ll do it and commentate it myself – even if it only gets 3 viewers).

  2. misterT0AST says:

    Left 4 Zerg.

  3. Stochastic says:

    The developers have stated that they are aiming for a late August/early September release. Technically still “summer.”

    For anyone’s who’s curious, this map (Docking) should be available in build 210 that’s expected to go up later today.

    • John Connor says:

      I was interested in this game like 250 years ago when it was announced. The graphics looked pretty good back then, too.

      I might play it if it’s really good, but there’s so many better looking things coming out now.

      • Alexander Norris says:


        Is your life really so empty and shallow that you buy games purely based on graphical fidelity (not even aesthetics) rather than, you know, them actually being a game?

        And NS2 still looks gorgeous.

  4. Beelzebud says:

    Am I the only one that still misses Gloom 2?

    • Jay says:

      Not quite. Loved that one.

    • Ubik2000 says:

      There was a Gloom 2? I played the hell out of Gloom back in my freshman year of college which was, christ, ’98. My roommate hosted a server until campus IT made us shut down. Good times….

      • Beelzebud says:

        Yep it was made by the same guys that made Gloom. It was made with the Quake 2 SDK and editor.

  5. magicwalnuts says:

    To answer Mr Grayson’s question: yes and no. I’ve been in the beta for three months now, and I’ve seen a bunch of balance changes, placeholder textures revamped, and a few bug fixes, and in theory the game is fun. However, in practice it’s extremely laggy and the Marine’s entire suite of end game equipment and abilities are not finished/haven’t been implemented. Considering the game has been in alpha and beta for the past 3 years I highly doubt Unknown Worlds is capable of releasing a version acceptable for public consumption by August. That said, the game is beautiful and it’s more or less and unbalanced, incomplete, and updated version of the mod we know and love. I’d say in six months it will be a great game, but as it stands it’s nowhere near done.

    • Ergates_Antius says:

      I’m generallly agree with your assessment. Unless, of course, UW have a whole load of stuff that is ready but hasn’t been released into the beta yet – which would be a bit of an odd thing to do (given that it’s a beta…)

    • Melatonin says:

      its a rare thing to see a team that will be able to stick with a project (release will not see the end of development if NS1 was anything to go by), and that have the time to put this amount of love into it.

      Its annoying, and frustrating sometimes right now, I often forget that things aren’t implemented yet, and that the balance needs work. But when one of the games enters ‘the zone’, and things hang in the balance, you get some of the most intensely enjoyable game play I have found.

      NS2 is something special, and while it might not be for everyone (especially those without the patience to witness its highs as well as its lows), I have every intention of sticking to it, because when it works, it’s like some kind of crazy halcyon nectar.

    • Zarim7 says:

      I haven’t played the beta in months, but this was what I took away from it as well. It played almost exactly like NS1, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing I guess, except that it was terribly unbalanced. Trying to kill most of the aliens as a marine mostly went like: 1) spot alien. 2) attempt to shoot alien as it runs toward you bouncing all over the walls and ceilings. 3) get eaten.

      • Stochastic says:

        I recommend giving the beta another try when build 210 is released. Clearly, there’s still a lot of work to be done, but UWE have made a lot of progress with the game in the past few months.

        • lagga says:

          Yeh I think I’m gonna have to check back in again with it this build, I’ve been watching the changes they’ve made recently and after the few builds that made the NS1 veteran and playtester in me gasp a little in horror (the lerk bilebomb build for example) they’ve been making strides back in the right direction with the latest builds. But I do appreciate that they were willing to mix things up a little and to see how it fared, have learnt from this and are changing things accordingly,

          And now especially with the Movement chamber equivalent finally implemented I can go back to enjoying skulking once again as I found celerity skulking in NS1 one of the most satisfying things in the world :D

        • mod the world says:

          You could have posted that a year ago (with another build number) and it would be as valid as it is now. I know they are a small team and stuff, but i’m a teeny tiny bit disappointed that progress is so tedious.

    • ThTa says:

      Agreed, it’s not really suitable for the average public right now, and they almost certainly won’t get it “done” by their estimated release date. But I’ve had plenty of fun regardless, even if that’s weighed down by the occasional annoyances. In the end, they’re a small team, they can afford a truly long development time, and they’ve got an immensely impressive modding community (which is heavily encouraged by them – obviously due to having a modding history themselves). It might take a while, but the potential’s there, and the developers and community are excellent, it looks to be shaping up just fine.

      Additionally, this is probably one of the only games I can truly enjoy spectating (shame about taking away a player slot, but the (official) livestreams are great, too).

  6. InternetBatman says:

    Looks a lot like the old AVP games. Man the alien campaigns were fun. Multiplayer kinda stunk though.

    • Hunchback says:

      Nowai! AvP 1 multiplayer is one of the most fun experiences you can have! Every race is COMPLETELY different from the other, and it’s just generally awesome.

  7. Mockdot says:

    This is a prequel to NS1 which was a Half-Life mod and was amazingly popular back in the day with certain group of people. Unfortunately the only downside I’m seeing right now is some balancing and the fact that dedicated servers require processors overclocked at around 4.5GHz to provide a stable server environment for the players if playing with more than 16, which to me is a huge downside. Currently in the Closed Beta as I already pre-ordered too, but lovely game non the less.

    • WhiteZero says:

      “This is a prequel”

    • mckertis says:

      ” amazingly popular”

      If by that you mean “nobody ever heard of it” – i will agree.
      I think i heard of it from Geeknights podcast five years ago or so, where they were claiming its the best thing ever…yet i couldnt actually find ANYONE, ANYWHERE, who played it, outside of their little forum.
      And this game, numbered 2, is in development for…4 years now ?

      • robodojo says:

        Yeah, you haven’t looked that hard. My entire internet community spawned out of that game and we still talk about it even now. People love that game. I’m a person and I sure as hell do.

      • Havok9120 says:

        How hard did you look? I mean….really? Were you involved with HL1/OpFor muliplayer communities at all? Because I wasn’t, and I still heard that it was the best thing Evar in the history of everything.

  8. airtekh says:

    I’ve had the game pre-ordered for over a year now, but honestly I haven’t poked my head in much to see what the beta is like. I’m waiting for the features to be more finalized.

    NS1 provided some of the best multiplayer experiences I’ve ever had, so I sincerely hope NS2 can emulate that.

  9. fenriz says:


    is there ever gonna be something to do beside shooting, in these little efpieces of yours?

    • Ergates_Antius says:

      Well, in this one there is also biting and stomping.

      • ThTa says:

        Yes, and you can choose to order the shooting/biting/stomping/building chaps around as well, by going as a commander.

    • TychoCelchuuu says:

      I don’t think an FPS is ever going to leave out the S. I mean, if it did, then by definition it wouldn’t be an FPS, right?

  10. Jim9137 says:

    Now that brings back some memories.

    Though I admit, it looks just like the original mod revamped.

    • Hunchback says:

      That’s exactly what i’ve been looking for!
      I was wondering if this mod will ever get a remake with modern graphics… It looks awesome! <3

    • Havok9120 says:

      But is that a bad thing? And if so…..why?

      Not everything needs to be revolutionary, especially when your concept is unique to you and, well, the mod you made before you founded a real studio.

  11. Wonderboy2402 says:

    I have about 240 hours in the beta so far.

    The game is shaping up to be great. If I slapped a percentage on what I feel is completion / balance / features… I would give it 75-80% finished.

    The devs seem to be throwing alot of stuff at the walls right now, to see what sticks… alot of experimentation this late into the game development. This can be viewed in a positive or negative light, but the devs entertain alot of player suggestions and some make it into builds.

    I think they will be hard pressed to meet their goal of a summer 2012 release window.

    I would recommend buying it if you enjoy asymmetrical multiplayer, and the mix of FPS with rts.

    • Stochastic says:

      Yeah, I’m a little worried they’re going to rush the release. Botched launches like that of Elemental provide a strong warning against doing so.

    • cmc5788 says:

      I would imagine they are launching because they have to, not because they want to. They’ve gotten quite a bit of revenue from preorders, licensing their lua debugger, etc., but if they develop this game for any longer they’re just going to run themselves into the ground. So I don’t know if they’ll be able to make a polished game by the release date, but they have no choice but to try.

      • Wonderboy2402 says:

        Unfortunately I have riden that train before… Mortal Online did the same thing. However, NS2 is actually alot of fun already so I am not nearly as worried about it going live.

        • Alexander Norris says:

          Yeah. The complete rearchitecting of the aliens these last couple of months have been really good. It’s actually really cool to see the devs trying new stuff like that – you can see them ditching legacy mechanics left over from NS1 for new stuff that actually works, and it’s a testament to UW that the new mechanics tend to not be broken. In any case, it’s a beta that is actually changing things.

          Anyway, NS2’s good fun – definitely an improvement on NS1, and still very pretty. Even if they released now, the only real problem would be the lack of engine optimisation (and the fact that they probably couldn’t do that many sweeping changes).

  12. Network Crayon says:

    Definitely looking forward to this! more than i reasonably should be!.

  13. Duke of Chutney says:

    my guess is christmas 2012, or Fall.

    They could release it in the summer, but it might take a bit of a slamming with the critics, or online community for its roughness. The main issue is the slight lagginess. Its much better than it once was, but its not ultra smooth, and with the speed of some of the aliens, it really needs to be.

    As others have said, there is still a bit of content to be added, then a fair amount of balancing.

    All said it is already a functional and fun game. Worth paying to drop in on the beta IMO.

  14. Ernesto says:

    I liked the music. But they should animate the teeth and arms while running. Even alien limbs aren’t that rigid. That’s a scientific fact ;)

  15. innociv says:

    Part of why I didn’t enjoy this game was the terrible grungy textures on the map and how easy it was the get lost.

    This map looks way better than all the previous ones I played, and just looks great to compared to any FPS maps period.

  16. Williz says:

    I did buy the game day 1. Natural Selection is still the best HL1 mod to this day imho, and I still play it although there are less siege servers than I would like :( I haven’t played NS2 for more than 20 minutes at a time though as the netcode is still quite laggy and can’t quite handle 32/64 players like the original mod could and that was my favourite thing about NS. So alas I will have to wait to bite some ‘rine butt with amazing graphics!

  17. Incredulous Dylan says:

    A lot of folks aren’t aware of this but NS2 is now on the Steam Workshop as well! In theory server operators will be able to subscribe to any mod by simply adding in the mod ID to their server.xml file. This includes maps and gameplay overhauls. My server was running a few custom maps off the workshop and a kick ass time was had by all! Anyone visiting the server automatically downloaded the files directly from Steam and it just worked. Right now in the new build (210) there’s a hitch with how Valve handles workshop mods with their server tool and this feature is temporarily disabled. The fella working with Valve on this problem has made a thread about how to get this feature up and running with a bit of elbow grease when the next build comes out (211). Server operators can check that out at link to unknownworlds.com. Once the issue is resolved with Valve in a later build all servers will be able to run the workshop in the incredibly simple fashion described above. If you run an NS2 server and want to sit at the cool kids lunch table come build 211 be sure to keep that thread bookmarked : )

    Expect to see a huge explosion of custom content then – we saw multiple new maps added onto the workshop just one day from people realizing they could use it. If you’ve got a complete custom map I’d advise uploading it on the workshop since everyone will be playing whatever maps are on as soon as it’s available.

  18. Gorgenapper says:

    Kind of an old entry, but it’s worth saying something here. I’ve played NS1 for a very long time and I was always sad to see servers slip away into griefer madness, and to watch diehard NS1 players gradually move onto other things.

    This has all changed with NS2, which I’ve been playing for the past few months in beta form (currently beta 221). It’s like replacing an old incandescent lightbulb with a super bright CF one with white lighting. The graphics are up to date with modern games, and many gripes of the original NS1 have been addressed.

    What makes this game so different and so compelling vs other FPS is the level of teamwork you NEED in order to win. It’s kind of like the teamwork you need for games like L4D, but on a much higher level. You feel like you actually make a difference when you get a power node up, or when you gorge a chokepoint at a tech point and single-handedly (single-gorgedly?) defend that chokepoint against those pesky marines, or when you check the map and report on enemy movement which eventually leads the commander to order a base rush.

    The point is, NS2 is all about giving yourself for the greater good of the team. I think nothing of spending 75 res to turn into an Onos and leading the charge into the marine base and dying before I reach the power node/obs/phase gate. I tanked all that damage and allowed the rest of my team to destroy the base. Same goes for buying a GL, dying and letting someone else have it as long as they use it properly. Or rushing into a hive with a dual minigun exo and shooting the hive to the exclusion of everything else. People who play NS2 and play selfishly will not find their time in the game to be very pleasant.

    Last night, I was rushing a chokepoint with two other marines. Everything was eerily quiet – then we turned a corner and there were six skulks and a gorge rushing at us from a narrow hallway. The skulks were all running on the walls and ceiling. It was a scene straight out of Aliens, no word of a lie here. Later in the game, we were at a tech point getting ammo and we heard this ominous ‘thump thump thump’ noise from the hallways just outside, as if something huge was running around, and it was creepy as hell, to say the least.