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2008 survival horror video game by EA Redwood Shores

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In Space No One Can Hear You Scream

  • Sep 2, 2009
Rating:
+5
Dead Space takes the genre of survival horror to new heights. It's atmosphere help it become a terrifying game that will keep you fully immersed, and maybe keep you up at night.

In Dead Space, you play as Issac Clarke, an engineer. Along with two friends from Concordance Extraction Corporation, you receive a distress call from another ship and decide to investigate. Upon arriving, however, things have already gone awry. Aboard the ship is a deadly alien race that has apparently killed much of the crew. Within minutes of arriving, you're separated from your allies. Your job is to survive on this ship, reunite with your crew and find a way to escape. Dead Space won't get any points for having a creative story, but what it lacks in story it makes up for in other areas.

There's one thing Dead Space does right immediately. It sets the tone and atmosphere of the game right away. The environments are dark and moody and the enemies are horrifying and scary.  The game does such a good job in its dark atmosphere that it's easy to be absorbed into it and scared. Needless to say, the game is not for the squeamish. There's blood and lots of it.  Not to mention a lot of fear.

Dead Space isn't very hard to pick up and play. As Issac you'll come across a few helpful weapons and tools to help you out. However, Dead Space takes the idea of gun toting to a new level. The enemies in Dead Space are not killed by taking mere shots at them. Instead you'll be forced to dismember the arms and legs of your enemies in order to kill them. It can take time to get used to the gameplay, but once you do, you'll come to enjoy it. There's a definite strategic feel as to how to sever your enemies. In short, it's a widely different approach. You may find yourself scrounging for ammo from time to time, but for the most part ammunition for your weapons is plentiful.

The most interesting aspect of the gameplay, however, may be that everything takes place in real time. When you're listening to someone's radio transmission or even just browsing the menu, everything is still moving. This means you could be attacked while selecting a weapon to use in combat or even if you're trying to heal. This would be a problem if there weren't hot keys for doing the two most important things: healing and reloading. It keeps you on your toes for the most part. You can pause the game, at least, but you won't be able to take a look at your items, weapons, objectives or maps while you do it. There may be times when this can be frustrating, particularly if you get lost or need to know what you're supposed to be doing. Even when one of the game's tutorials pop up it's in real time. In the long run it isn't too big of a problem. In some ways it enhances the games sense of urgency. Luckily there are plenty of save points scattered throughout the game.

Graphically Dead Space is incredible and easily one of the best looking games of this generation. The action never slows down and there is a lot of attention to detail. If it weren't for enemies roaming around and trying to kill you, you'd probably stop just to look around and marvel at the visuals. It really draws you in and makes you feel as though you're part of the game.  Some of the monsters finishing blows are quite brutal and graphic.  This isn't a game for your kids, but it's definitely a treat! The game also has some good physics. You can kick boxes and containers around on the ground or move bodies. It's amazing just how much attention is given to the game's environment.

The music is also very good. Just like the visuals, it's dark and moody. The sound effects are perhaps the best thing going for the game. The monsters sound just as terrifying as they look.  In some cases it can be terrifying just walking down the corridors. The voice acting is also a treat. In terms of production values, Dead Space is a masterpiece.

Dead Space isn't a perfect game, however. For starters, the camera stays a little too close to the action at times. Beyond that, the controls also feel a little clunky at times such as when you have to turn or when you need to maneuver the camera to pick up certain items. It isn't a huge hindrance, but it can cause you to take unnecessary damage at times. Luckily you can also find a lot of health scattered about.

In the end, Dead Space is a masterpiece and raises the bar for the Survival Horror genre. It's dark, absorbing atmosphere makes it, by far, one of the greatest--and scariest--games in the genre.

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October 17, 2009
so cool. I am more of a survival horror fan as you can tell. Great review! Now back to Arkham Asylum I go!
 
September 03, 2009
You are dead on on the atmosphere of this game, I am just getting to play it now (got back logged from last year), and this is one of those games that even though I enjoyed it a lot, I can't play it for too long, because I was all tense from the atmosphere of this game, and I have to take a rest after a hour or two (The other game that had the same effect on me is Condemned).
 
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More Dead Space reviews
review by . July 08, 2011
posted in Siliconera Bounce
I first read a little about Dead Space when I was in college on the day Halo 3 came out and a friend handed me a video game magazine and I took a strong notice to the (then) up-and-coming Dead Space. I really liked what I saw in that article since it was supposed to be influenced from one of my favorite movies, Event Horizon (Isaac's helmet even looks like the front of the EH ship). A year passes and I received Dead Space as a gift on my 21st birthday last year and I won't be parting with …
About the reviewer
Sean A. Rhodes ()
Ranked #5
I'm a more analytical person. I believe that the purpose of the review is not for me to give you my opinion but for me to give you an analysis and help you decide if you want to get it. If you reading … more
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Wiki

Dead Space from EA is sure to please any action-adventure gamer looking for a bloody battle against deadly aliens. Dead Space for Xbox 360 begins when a massive mining ship, the USG Ishimura, comes in contact with a mysterious alien artifact and suddenly loses its communications with Earth. Engineer Isaac Clarke is sent to repair

Deep Space pits Isaac Clarke against deadly aliens. View larger.

Zero-G game play allows you to walk on walls and the ceiling. View larger.

EA delivers an incredibly frightening experience with state-of-the-art graphics and effects. View larger.

Neutralize the attacking enemies with weapons and telekinetic powers. View larger. the Ishimura's communications, but arrives to find a floating vessel that has become a complete bloodbath. The crew is mutilated and infected with an ancient alien scourge. Clarke's repair mission is transformed to one of survival as he fights to save himself and return the artifact to the planet at any cost.

Fight with Weapons and Telekinesis
The alien hordes are incredibly resilient. You'll have to find creative ways to neutralize the attacking enemies by shearing off limbs with powerful weapons. And when the ammo runs out you'll be thankful that you can use your telekinetic powers to pick up objects (even the aliens' own severed arms and legs) and hurl them at your advancing enemies.

Graphics, Effects, and Sound Increase the Horror
EA delivers an incredibly frightening experience with ...

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Details

Console: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows
Genre: Action
Release Date: October 2008

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