Developers: Visceral Games
Release Date: 9/29/2009
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The Good: Creepy immersive atmosphere, lots of weapons, great story telling
The Bad: Repetitive, very hard, may turn Dead Space fans off
Dead Space is a surprising new gaming franchise from EA that was actually original, in depth, a just really amazing. The whole story behind Dead Space is just so surreal thanks to all the different forms of media from movies to books to comic books. Dead Space is an alien artifact that somehow unleashed a deadly race of aliens onto a planet colony and found its way to the Ishimura which is a planet cracking ship.
Dead Space: Extraction sets itself between the comic books and the first Dead Space game. Think of this as what happened before Isaac Clarke entered the Ishimura. Extraction may initially throw you off guard since it’s an “on rails” FPS kind of like old arcade games. This may turn Dead Space fans completely off since you don’t have control of exploration. While this does hamper the score a lot there is so much fun and fright to be had in Extraction.
The main focus in Extraction is getting the hell off the Ishimura and finding a shuttle. You play as several characters throughout the game, but your main guy is Nate. He is a P-SEC officer who is working with his sergeant to get as many people to safety as possible. You really only see your reticle to the main focus is to point and shoot. The controls are really great and laid out for both regular use and the Wii Zapper (or any other gun attachment you may have) so I will be reviewing this game off of the Zapper control scheme. You have a lot at your hands besides weapons and this includes your Stasis (slows down objects), and your telekinesis which will pull objects towards you. You also have a swipe attack for melee and cutting things throughout the game.
Most of your weapons arsenal is tools and all the weapons from the original Dead Space are back with lots of additions. Some of these include the P-SEC pistol, welding gun, and nail gun. The nail gun is standard and has unlimited ammo, but each weapon has a secondary fire. For example, the pulse rifle has a shotgun blast that must be charged, the P-SEC pistol has a spray shot, and the flamethrower can shoot fireballs. All of these weapons will be needed and strategically used for certain situations.
Most of the game plays through the creepy and eerie story with the character moving on his/her own. While this is immersive and cinematic it can be boring sometimes since several minutes can pass with just looking around at nothing. The game moves at a slower pace than you would want, but it fits the atmosphere. There will be times when creatures will grab you out of the dark and you must shake your Wii remote to turn on your glow worm. You will hear strange voices and creepy visions that pop up out of nowhere. While you’re roaming these halls you need to act fast and use your telekinesis to grab ammo, upgrades, health, audio/text logs etc. All of these are tallied up at the end of each chapter and you are scored.
When it comes to creatures I can’t really recall any new forms. Every single form from the original Dead Space is here, and even some environments. The devs recycled a lot of content and this felt like a big no-no to me. While there are some simple mini-games such as a rewiring game where you can’t touch red circuits, a turret section, and some parts that have you nail stuff up to keep things out. The game is riveting and exciting, but by the time you get through all ten (long) chapters you just want it to end. This is partly due to the difficulty factor and the unbalanced ammo versus creatures problem. Scrounging ammo is very difficult in this game even on the easiest setting, and it makes you wish the devs would just stop doing that.
I however highly enjoyed this game and found it to be worth the $50 purchase. With a number of weapons, decent length and amazing helped make this game easy to chew. There is just enough mixed around for you to stay on the edge of your seat, and that’s what keeps you playing.