Dead Space User Review
If you're not frightened...you're either in denial or possess eyes that have seen much worse than the unbelievable inconceivable repulsiveness of genetic transmutations imagined through ones reading of "The Island of Dr. Moreau". If I've managed to hold you this long by the end of the review you'll have ventured out on a short journey in search of the very game in which words I currently utter. You'll find after the fruitful experience of your journey a game worth the price of admission. That my sci-fi seeking citizen...I most proudly guarantee.
At the games introduction, as our gaze is fixed upon the amazing sight of deep space, rocky debris, and a ship drifting in the distance, we find ourselves scanning a visual feast for the eyes. The story begins here, as Isaac Clarke our speechless protagonist and engineer, Zach Hammond the ships senior security officer, and Kendra Daniels a technologist of sorts travel their course to investigate the fate of a mining ship which at some point emitted a distress signal. Unaware of the situation on the USG Ishimura (ship that called the distress signal) the team unfortunately crash lands onto the Ishimura by way of some docking error leaving them only to search the ship in hopes of finding alternate means of transport. Our unsuspecting characters eventually discover what they first believe to be an infection which has spread quickly reaching all corners of the vast Ishimura. They and you ultimately discover the truth to the tale through a series of insanely disturbing events and abandoned audio recordings enlightening all to the twisted outcome via religious creeds and the deadly consequences spawned from human curiosity.
Oh yeah, it's a third person shooter. One that focuses on a creepy, freaky, and startling atmosphere. So if you intentionally lowered your self-awareness for Resident Evil 5 to experience that horrific atmosphere, intention no more. Dead Space will grab you and rattle you startle you, grab you again, and giggle at your despair. Dead Space truly intends to master the survival/horror genre, and walaah my tee and undies are drenched with fear and a not so welcomed flush of true horror-fect (horror-effect).
Suit'em and boot'em...experience-wise Isaac is at a huge disadvantage; not only is he outnumbered 1 to Ishimura's entire transformed-to-monstrous crew...well you'll find out when you step into Isaac shoes. But Isaac is armored with a metallic seemingly rusted life support suit system. The life gauge is conveniently attached onto the back of the suit breaking the mold of the typical-lined life bar haunting the top of the in-game screen. It adds a sense of immersion that most games these days need to shamelessly parallel. Furthermore, Isaac's suit allows him to breathe in spaces void of oxygen allowing him access to and passage through many ravaged areas of the Ishimura gaining access to deeper sections of the ship. Not to mention his suit makes for a great defense against the brutal and relentless necromorphs (monstrous creatures roaming the Ishimura) lurking among the gigantic vessel. The suit is available for upgrade only through store access and stores are placed specifically and thoroughly around the ship. Upgrades however require modules which are only found lying throughout the ship so story progression is necessary (to gain access to different areas) to obtain more hefty and reliable suits. Certain elements of suits are available for upgrade only when customizing and applying nodes at the bench. Nodes can be found...at times...rare times in unmistakable containers pinned to walls, after defeating mini-boss challenging enemies, or bought using quite a handful of credits; kinda wish there was a hacking device available...you run low really fast, you know fighting for survival and pimping out your equipment, it's really expensive! But YOU carefully and hesitantly digress. Yes...as I've so zealously stressed it's just that good!
Oh...the weapons...how foolish of me to have forgotten. This is how you fight back...efficiently and productively. There are of course melee attacks which are usually ideal in one-on-one combat situations which range from a swing of the arm-and-weapon to the force of a vicious stomp. Don't try this surrounded, you'll be pummeled...although righteously deserving of it after the heads-up. Try to stick with the weapons. These oh so lovely weapons. First is the Plasma Cutter. Need I say more? It fires a thick yet precise beam cutting any unfortunate enemy naive enough to mistake it for a last resort plastic bluff. Here's the good part! All weapons come with an alternative firing mode, got your attention yet? The plasma cutters alternative firing mode just so happens to be a 90 degree firing flip. Apparently, this weapon is very effective against many different enemies conveniently permitting vertical and horizontal firing modes, couldn't ask for more than that. Every weapon is also upgradeable as different elements of Isaac's suit are, through utilization of nodes. Damage, reload speed, rounds per clip, fire speed, width, mines, charge, and duration are all upgradeable and vary in presence and in number with each weapon. I don't want to spoil the surprise for you other anxious players out there concerning other weapons and their unique firing modes but I'll assure you they are all very handy, and pleasing to use. Other devices that arrive in Isaac's inventory are the stasis ability and the kinesis module. The stasis has the ability to slow down time to a crawl allowing Isaac to traverse obstacles impossible to overcome without the power of this tool. The stasis device also works the same with enemies giving the tool a much more frequent and combat oriented power. Now the kinesis module can be used to manipulate physical objects which allows Isaac to progress through the story and it also can be used as a weapon. Both stasis and kinesis can be upgraded at the bench offering a diverse range of customization through specific empowerment.
Like I said before the graphics are great...obviously we're not experiencing God of War 3 visuals but Dead Space's visuals do the job nicely. The gameplay is fun because the controls are solid. Running is permitted through the holding of the L2 button but for the majority of the time, you're either gonna be too scared to run but if you are running, most likely it's gonna be away from a vicious sharp-bladed Arnold schwarzenegger-primed- figured necromorph hued to a deep tan almost to that of a scorched corpse. It realllllly gets intense! Where the game truly shines resides around the sound. Actually, these are prerequisites for experiencing Dead Space. At least a 26 inch HD Tv. At least a 5.1 surround sound system. And last but incredibly not least...a hefty appliance of deodorant before play, and a gallon containable diaper boasting these exact words on the front and the back: "Dead Space on Impossible Difficulty-it's sorta Required". Just in case an unfortunate individual strolls into your room unannounced staring in horror at your undergarment you can without words and much needed energy simply stand up, and turn to or fro to explain your current state of degenerated infancy.
This game offers much more horror than "Tales from the Crypt", "Goosebumps", and "Resident Evil 5" combined. Although that's not saying much...throw in "Alan Wake" as well. I heard it had a few scares and sparked a few sweat drops. Which never completely formed but...Dead Space provides a captivating story, terror imbuing sounds of anticipation, solid gameplay, and a twist that will leave you sweating in fear but gripped anticipation for Dead Space 2. So what are you waiting for, you chicken?
This user review does not reflect the views of the PSX Extreme Staff.