"What the hell is that?!"
"Put fire on the thing, now!"
―Cpl. Winter and Pvt. O'Neal, regarding a Crusher (from Aliens: Colonial Marines)

The Crusher, also known as the Charger, is a Stage 6 Xenomorph caste that was encountered by Colonial Marines from the USS Sephora on Acheron (LV-426), and from those aboard the UAS Endeavor inside the Engineer temple below Pala Station on LV-895. Its most notable features are its large head crest, which is said to be completely bulletproof, and its habit of charging its prey to inflict massive blunt force trauma. It acts as something of a heavy unit for the Xenomorphs, able to engage even armored vehicles with some success. This is considered to be the Xenomorph equivalent of a tank.[1]

Crushers evolve from Sentry Xenomorphs.


Biology and Behavior[]

The Crusher's mesoskeleton is a metallic black, though may reflect brownish undertones. They have been seen in various sizes, but are always considerably larger than common Drones. As a Praetorian-adjacent caste of the Runner evolutionary line, they can be similar in size to a Praetorian at between 5'11'' and 9'10'' at the shoulders.[1] With it's crest included, however, a Crusher can be taller than an adult alien on all fours. The Crusher's head is topped with a thick armored chitinous crest, larger even than on some Queens, that it lowers into a vertical position before charging its target like a bull. This crest is incredibly strong, hardy enough to repel most forms of gunfire (including even the M56 Smartgun), and when lowered into the charging position it effectively shields the Crusher's more vulnerable body from frontal damage.[2]

The force that the Crusher can impart with its charging attack is tremendous, enough even to propel an M577 APC sideways some distance or throw an individual Marine several meters through the air.[2] However, this unique mode of assault renders the Xenomorph virtually blind whilst charging, meaning it is unable to alter its course should its target move out of the line of attack. If an aggressor is agile enough to sidestep around a charging Crusher, its less resilient body will subsequently be exposed and left vulnerable. Even so, the creature is still incredibly tough, able to soak up significant amounts of damage before succumbing.[2] The P9 Sonic Harpoon Artillery Remote Projectile Rifle is a good choice of weapon to quickly kill a Crusher. A full magazine of ten 9X-E explosive darts shot at a Crusher's weak spot — its back — is enough to kill the beast.[2]

It has limited mobility compared to other Xenomorphs. It is unable to climb walls and properly jump due to its size and weight. It also can't walk on two legs, forcing it to move around on all fours.[1] However, it can rear up and use its head as a bashing weapon or attack with its foremost claws. Despite its size and weight, it is very fast and can kill multiple enemies in a single charge.

Little is known about the Crusher's intelligence, but it seems to be very limited as its only purpose is to charge its enemies like a rabid rhino.[1] Its basic form from which it evolves, the Runner, was also thought to have limited intelligence since it emerged from amore instinctual animal host instead of from a sapient creature such as a Human or Yautja.

Creation and Hive Role[]

Crushers are typically only seen in mature hives, being the later stage of the more basic Runner, however some newer hives are known to have them.[2] They are effectively the "Praetorians" of the Runner metamorphic line, evolving from a Sentry Xenomorph. At the will of the Queen, the Sentry is exposed to Royal Jelly and force-fed raw metals for weeks by Workers. They will then cocoon themselves and undergo a lengthy metamorphosis, where they will emerge as the enormous and heavily-armored Crusher. Presumably, the metals eaten during the process are the reason for the Xenomorph's exceptionally tough mesoskeleton.

Like it's previous form, the Crusher is a defender of the hive and are rarely seen outside of it.[1] Unlike its 'cousin' the Praetorian, Crushers are not known to evolve into further forms.


  • In some interviews with the game's (Aliens: Colonial Marines) developers, the Crusher has been called a Charger, no doubt due to its tendency to charge at prey.
  • Despite featuring heavily in the E3 2011 gameplay demo, the Crusher only appears four times in the release version of Aliens: Colonial Marines, and is only engaged (and killed) by the player once. The Crusher also appears in Stasis Interrupted, where the player once again only gets to engage and kill a single Crusher.
  • Four Crushers can be seen in the Aliens: Colonial Marines campaign. The first is seen pushing a Weyland-Yutani APC over a cliff. Later, upon entering a breached outpost, a heavily wounded Crusher is seen still breathing. Another is found locked in a cell inside the Origin Facility, while the fourth is encountered (and fought) when the player tries to retreat back into Hadley's Hope.
  • The Crusher is first encountered in Aliens: Fireteam Elite the end of the mission The Gift of Fire: Recon, afterward it is encountered as a "wave boss" enemy type throughout future levels similar to the Drone, Warrior, and Synth Heavy Variant
  • The variant of the Crusher seen in Fireteam Elite is considerably smaller and morphologically different from other depictions of Crushers, making it possible these Crushers encountered by the marines of the UAS Endeavor are a sort of intermediary stage between chosen Sentries and the full-sized Crushers.
  • Esther states that Crushers are unique to LV-895, however, this is disproven by the Alien RPG and other parts of the franchise they appear in.