Alien: Invasion is a 2016 novel written by Tim Lebbon and published by Titan Books. A sequel to Predator: Incursion, it sees the Rage finally reaching the Human Sphere and launching their invasion. Armed with highly advanced technology and a vast army of controlled Xenomorphs, their campaign is devastatingly effective, leaving the forces of Earth desperately searching for a means to even the odds against the relentless invaders. The book was released on April 26, 2016, as part of Alien Day.
PREDATOR INTO PREY
Faced with the overwhelming forces of the Rage, Earth envoys forge an unprecedented alliance with the Predators. Yet even the combined might of two races may not be enough to stop the carnage, as an unstoppable swarm of Xenomorphs topples planet after planet, penetrating ever deeper into the Human Sphere.
Aboard the Yautja habitat where they have been stranded, Lieutenant Mains and Private Lieder prepare to meet their end at the hands of the Xenomorphs. However, at the last moment, they are saved by the arrival of another Excursionist crew, the HellSparks, led by Lieutenant Eddie Durante. Escaping the infested habitat aboard the HellSparks' ship, Mains and Lieder immediately send a message to USCM command explaining what they have learned — the Rage have captured an entire fleet of ancient colony ships and are now returning with them to human space, having used the captive colonists aboard to breed a vast army of Xenomorphs under the control of their android generals.
Within a matter of weeks, the Rage reach the Human Sphere and begin their invasion. Armed with weapons technology far in advance of anything possessed by the rest of humanity, as well as their Xenomorph army, their progress through the Gamma quadrant is swift and brutal. They immediately move to capture dropholes across the Outer Rim, seeking to use the portals to quickly penetrate further into human space, as well as assaulting any military targets they encounter. The onslaught is as rapid as it is devastating; aboard Charon Station, the primary command center for the USCM, General Bassett and Weyland-Yutani executive Gerard Marshall discuss the possibility of deactivating the entire drophole network in order to stall the Rage's advance. However, realizing that doing so would leave billions of people stranded hopelessly in deep space, they cast the idea aside as unthinkable.
Among the military installations attacked by the Rage is the base on LV-1657, where leading Yautja researchers Isa Palant and Milt McIlveen have been stationed while Palant recuperates from a brain injury that has prevented her from travelling to Earth. General Rommel launches a ground assault with his Xenomorphs; the Marines defending the installation are swiftly overwhelmed, while Rommel uses one of his own vessels as a suicide bomber to obliterate the base. Palant and McIlveen are saved from the carnage by Major Halley and her Marines, who have been assigned to protect them, and the group lifts off in their vessel, the Pixie. While attempting to provide air support to the survivors still on the ground, Halley and her Marines manage to corner Rommel in a cave; rather than be captured, the android self-destructs in a nuclear explosion, the blast severely damaging the Pixie. While repairs to the ship are carried out, Marshall contacts Halley and orders her team to seek out and capture one of these android generals intact so that it can be studied, his hope being that the secrets of their control over the Xenomorphs can be unlocked and thus a counter developed. As they begin their search, the crew of the Pixie find they are being shadowed by two Yautja vessels, their crews apparently ordered to follow Palant and protect her following her peace summit with the Elder Kalakta.
Despite the ongoing battles in the Gamma quadrant, Durante and his HellSparks are tasked with patrolling another sector of the Human Sphere. There, they unexpectedly stumble upon another Rage ship, heavily damaged and seemingly adrift. Durante boards the mystery vessel to investigate, along with several of his men and Mains and Lieder. The group eventually encounters three badly wounded survivors, who explain that they are aboard the Othello, one of the Rage's two command ships. The trio explain that there was an insurrection aboard, perpetrated by members of the crew who did not agree with the slaughter now being waged on human space; the uprising was swiftly crushed by the android general aboard, who unleashed his Xenomorphs upon the rebels, the last survivors of whom now stand before the Marines. Realising the vessel is hostile, Durante orders a retreat, but they are attacked and trapped by freshly awoken Xenomorph soldiers, while their own ship is destroyed, stranding them.
Meanwhile, Liliya and her Yautja companion Hashori continue to flee the army of General Alexander, the Rage commander tasked with capturing them. After temporarily escaping their pursuers through a drophole, Liliya and Hashori arrive at a remote, independent space station known as Hell, where they are greeted with trepidation. Taken to a secure cell, they are questioned by Jiango Tann, a firner Weyland-Yutani scientist who, alongside his wife Yvette, fled the company after its experiments with the Xenomorphs caused the death of their son. Liliya explains that, after fleeing from the human sphere centuries ago, the Rage came across a dyson sphere-like construct on the edge of space. Built by a long-lost, dog-like alien species, the structure contained advanced technology which the Rage used to extend their lifespans and construct a reckoning military force, as well as archives containing genetic information on the Xenomorphs. Combining this with the research stolen from Weyland-Yutani aboard the USS Evelyn-Tew by Liliya centuries prior, the Rage has managed to take control of the creatures using a complex system of nanites directed by their android generals. Despite the absurdity of her tale, Jiango believes Liliya and her desire to help humanity defeat the Rage. Agreeing to assist, Jiango goes in search of a crew and a ship that can take them quickly to Earth, where Liliya can pass on to those in command the secrets of the Rage's control over the Xenomorphs, information she now carries in her synthetic blood. Tann's search leads him to Ware and her misfit crew of mercenaries, who agree to the job despite the dangers involved.
The Pixie eventually locates one of the colony ships being used by the Rage to breed and transport their army, damaged and adrift just like the Othello. Halley and her Marines board the vessel and find evidence of conflict aboard, before they too are confronted by Xenomorphs. During their frantic escape, they discover their Yautja companions have also boarded the vessel to hunt; one of the creatures incapacitates the android general in charge and delivers him to the Marines. After evacuating and destroying the colony ship with nuclear weapons, Halley and Palant debate whether giving the android to Weyland-Yutani — and thereby gifting them the secret of true Xenomorph control — is a wise move. Concluding the company cannot be trusted, they elect to disobey their orders and study the android themselves. However, McIlveen pulls a weapon on them, revealing himself to be a company agent and demanding they deliver the android to his superiors; he is killed by one of Halley's Marines, and the rest of the crew follow their Yautja escorts to a secret Yautja installation where Palant can research the android herself.
On the Othello, the surviving Marines and their three rebel companions are relentlessly assaulted by the thousands of Xenomorphs aboard, and soon Mains and Lieder once again find themselves the sole survivors. They locate a hangar and attempt to steal a ship to escape, but the sheer volume of Xenomorphs manage to break inside the vessel before they can launch, and the two Marines ultimately find themselves trapped in the on-board armory. With Xenomorphs starting to break down the door, they activate the ship's nuclear warheads and share a final kiss as the blast obliterates them and the Othello.
Aboard the second Rage command ship, the Macbeth, news of the Othello's destruction reaches Beatrix Maloney, leader of the Rage. She mourns the loss of her sister vessel but presses on with her grand scheme, plotting the next phase of her invasion of the Human Sphere. She dispatches General Mashima to attack the heavily populated Weaver's World, intending to use the slaughter there as a distraction to draw the USCM's focus while her own ship jumps to the very heart of human space — Earth.
Simultaneous with the physical release, Audible Studios produced an unabridged audiobook of Alien: Invasion, read by John Chancer. The audiobook runs for 10 hours and 29 minutes, and was released alongside Predator: Incursion, the first book in the Rage War trilogy.
- With Alien: Invasion, Tim Lebbon became one of four authors to have penned more than two novels for the Alien/Predator/Alien vs. Predator franchise, the others being Steve Perry, his daughter S. D. Perry and James A. Moore, with whom Lebbon worked on the 2014 Alien novel trilogy.
- The ship Aaron-Percival mentioned in the novel was named after AVPGalaxy administrator Corporal Hicks.
- There is a sequence in the novel where a horde of Rage-controlled Xenomorphs are sent to overrun a Colonial Marine vessel by breaking into it from the outside; these Xenomorphs are equipped with breathing apparatus, apparently to allow them to survive in space. However, in various other media, Xenomorphs have been exposed to the vacuum of space with no apparent ill effects.