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Alien Swarm

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Alien Swarm
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Developer(s) Valve Corporation
Publisher(s) Valve Corporation
License Freeware
Engine Source
Version (2010-08-06[1]) [+/-]
Platform(s) Windows[2]
Release date INT 2010-07-19[2]
Genre(s) Third-person coop shoot 'em up
Mode(s) Multiplayer (co-op), single player (training mission)
Rating(s) Not rated
Media Download
System requirements Pentium 4 3GHz, 1GiB RAM, GeForce 6600 with 128MiB VRAM, 2.5GiB HD space more...
Input methods Keyboard and mouse

Alien Swarm is a third-person (top-down perspective) coop shoot 'em up game developed and published by Valve Corporation. It was released as a freeware on 19 July 2010 through Steam. It is a remake of the Alien Swarm mod for Unreal Tournament 2004.

System requirements

Minimum system requirements

  • Windows XP/Vista/Seven
  • Pentium 4 3GHz or AMD Athlon equivalent (CPU with SSE2 support)
  • 1 GiB of RAM for XP, 2 GiB for Vista
  • DirectX 9 compatible graphics card with Shader Model 2.0 and 128 MiB of VRAM (ATI Radeon X800 or NVIDIA GeForce 6600)
  • Keyboard, mouse
  • Broadband internet connection (the default server setting requires a minimum of 30KB/s from client computers)

Recommended system specifications

  • Core 2 Duo @ 2.4 GHz or AMD equivalent
  • DirectX 9 compatible graphics card with Shader Model 3.0 (NVIDIA GeForce 7600 or ATI Radeon X1600)
  • DirectX 9.0c compatible sound card


The player can choose between 8 characters, split into 4 classes (2 characters per class). A character can only be chosen by one player. Each class has a few unique items and sometimes a unique ability.


Provides a passive bonus to damage and resistance to nearby teammates. His class-restricted weapons are the Vindicator (an improved shotgun) and incendiary mines (which deploy a fairly lasting firewall when they explode). The two playable characters are Sarge and Jaeger.

Special Weapons

Get large damage bonus and access to miniguns (the autogun, which has auto-aiming, and the minigun) with large magazines (250 bullets), quick fire rate (respectively 10 or 20/s) and decent damage per bullet (7 + bonus). The two playable characters are Wildcat and Wolfe.


His class-restricted things are healing stuff: healing beacons (when deployed, heals all teammates within a small area) and the healing gun (selectively heals one person at a time). The two playable characters are Faith and Bastille.


Has a motion sensor (which places moving mobs on the mini-map), set up sentry guns faster, welds doors faster, and is the only class able to "hack" certain door panels or computers. His class-restricted weapons are the prototype assault rifle (like the standard assault rifle but with auto aiming plus stun grenades instead of normal grenades). The two playable characters are Crash and Vegas.

Game tweaks

Enabling the console

To enable the console, go to Options → Keyboard settings, then at the bottom check Enable developer console (you can also edit the key shortcut in the same menu (default key: [~]).

Playing solo

Although the game is designed to be played in coop with other players, and will usually be quite hard otherwise, it may be interesting to play solo for those seeking a challenge or willing to avoid friendly fire to do the Perfect achievement. To bypass the 2-players requirement, open the console (see above) and type asw_ignore_need_two_player_requirement 1[3]. To lower the probability of other players joining, you may want to also restrict the game to friends by typing (in the console again) make_game_friends_only (use make_game_public to disable).

Playing with bots

Playing solo might be good to do the Perfect achievement, but playing with bots (which usually don't team-bleed to much as long as you don't give them a flamethrower) will probably be easier. To add a bot, while you're in the lobby open the console and type cl_selectm [character] [slot][4], where:

  • [character] is the character as a number from 0 to 7:
    • 0: Sarge
    • 1: Wildcat
    • 2: Faith
    • 3: Crash
    • 4: Jaeger
    • 5: Wolfe
    • 6: Bastille
    • 7: Vegas
  • [slot] is the slot number (from 0 to 3, or -1 to automatically pick the first available lot)

To remove a bot, use cl_dselectm [character] where [character] is a number from 0 to 7 as above.


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External links

  • The Alien Swarm Wiki: a Wikia-hosted wiki about Alien Swarm, all details about every characters, weapons, achievements, maps, speed run strategies, etc.


  1. Alien Swarm Update Released. Steam. Valve Corporation (2010-08-06). Retrieved on 2010-08-09.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Alien Swarm. Steam. Valve Corporation. Retrieved on 2010-08-09.
  3. Gamespot - Alien Swarm Question - Solo run?
  4. SegmentNext - How to Add Bots to Alien Swarm Multiplayer via Console