In “Aliens: Bug Hunt,” you and your group play the Colonial Marines from James Cameron’s film as they search for the missing colonists on LV-426. At the start of the game, players will choose one main character and two grunts for their player board and begin to explore the five sections of the colony. The player action economy is simple: your miniature has three points of movement that can be used to move, reveal new tiles, or navigate tough terrain. Each squad also has one collective action, which players will primarily use to shoot, reload, and clear in-game obstacles as they advance.
Success in “Aliens: Bug Hunt” boils down to how well you manage your player boards. Think of your squad as some combination of your health bar and ammo; each time you shoot with a character, that character gives you the number of attacks present on the player card. This requires you to move that character from the Ready section of your board to the Depleted area when finished. You always have the option of taking the reload action — which readies all characters in your squad — but with only one action available each turn, a smart player may choose to hold some firepower in reserve if the board goes sideways on them.
And gunfire in this game is anything but automatic. Each xenomorph on the board is represented by a single dice, which players roll to determine the fate of their squads. If this result is a blank die face, your soldier successfully kills a xenomorph. Roll a white claw or red bite mark, however, and your character may get rebuffed or even injured during their attack. This makes combat in “Aliens: Bug Hunt” a battle of attrition, often determined by when and how you use the special powerups — such as destroying extra xenomorphs on a specific tile — located on each randomized mission card.