I am a huge fan of survival horror. Ever since the early days of Resident Evil and Silent Hill I have been obsessed with video games that would tap into the darkest reaches of my fears and exploit them for my entertainment. When I first heard of Dead Space I imagined a silly horror movie that took place in space like Jason X or Leprechaun 4. Instead I was treated to something along the lines of Alien and Event Horizon, but far more frightening. The game knocked my socks off. It was dark, engaging, scary as hell, and is possibly one of my favorite survival horror titles of all time…naturally it left me wanting more. Well the good folks at EA will deliver, and it looks like the next installment will pull all the stops and try be to even more horrific then it’s predecessor.
The level being presented had Isaac, our protagonist from the first game, once again fighting for his life against the alien creatures which have infected another location. Whether this is another planet or settlement is unclear but one thing is for certain, everything has been improved from the first game. Isaac walks through a cold corridor filled with large tubes, as if containing test subjects of some-kind. The atmosphere is murky with a thick mist as he discovers that some of these tubes are shattered, evidence that whatever they were holding managed to escape. As soon as he turns, Isaac is attacked by a new creature in the game that will spew a boiling substance at you from a distance. Using the kinetic energy the creature is frozen as Isaac shoots off each of the limbs.
He continues only to have to solve a gravity puzzle to continue to the exit. New additions to the suit are little propulsion vents that will guide you around well floating in zero gravity. Isaac escapes the area and we are treated to a glimpse of the new advanced suit he gets, and boy does he look badass. It looks like a military grade outfit as opposed to the engineering suit he was equipped with before.
One big change is that Isaac actually talks quite a bit, where as before he was fairly mute. He steps into a large futuristic cathedral that just looks jaw dropping. They are really pushing the environments and character animation from the first game. Naturally he gets attacked by mutant children, the creepiest kind of mutants there can be right? Unfortunately these little suckers ambush in large groups so if you see one you can expect a good dozen or so to pop up. As Isaac continues he is attacked by a helicopter equipped with machine guns, showing that the monsters are not the only enemies he needs to face. He manages to escape through a vent only to faced with a large, fast and seemingly invincible creature. Just watching the sequence of him trying outrun the thing through falling debris gets me nervous, I can only imagine how I will be when I actually play this.
Isaac manages to reach safety but of course it is short lived (seriously this poor guy never gets a break) as the Helicopter from before shows up and begins to fire into windows, causing them to shatter and the vacuum of space pulls Isaac, and the large menacing creature, out. He grabs onto the helicopter, spinning out of control, and clings for dear life as he desperately fights off the monster in a nail biting sequence. The presentation ends there and I must say I am absolutely astounded by how they have managed to improve the game play. It feels more cinematic and intense as the player will fight to survive the new horrors EA has lined up. I cannot wait for this sequel to hit shelves next year.