Thursday, February 10, 2011

Dead Space 2 | Review

Two years ago, EA and Visceral Games asked us to come along on a journey into the Dead of Space, with a new IP, Dead Space.  Most gamers (and critics) found a lot to love about one man's adventure aboard the USS Ishimura...and everyone was clamoring for more.  Visceral then went on to make the slightly less loved Dante's Inferno, but going back to the Dead Space franchise has proven to be just what the team needs to securely position themselves as today's foremost scare-masters.

Forget Resident Evil, Dead Space is now the king of Horror on any platform.

Picking up a few years after the first Dead Space left off, you one again take on the role of Isaac Clarke, who after defeating the Necromorphs and coming into contact with the Marker, became infected himself.  Put into a deep sleep to slow the spread, you awake three years later in a straight-jacket on board the Sprawl, a complete metropolis on one of Saturn's Moons.  Of course, your awakening is perfectly timed to a second Necromorph attack, only this time, you're on a full-populated city, complete with citizens who have no idea of the horror that is the Necromorphs.  Shortly into the first chapter (there are 15 Chapters) you are contacted by Daina, a mysterious woman who is your only ally so far...her or one of your asylum mates who occasionally pops-up early on.  Because your seeking answers, and have an alien infestation spreading quicker now that you're awake, you'll follow Daina's direction in search of help.  And I'll end story details there, as there's alot that will happen, we don't want to ruin for you.  Lets just say, it doesn't disappoint.

If you've played the first, you know how this one controls, it's a third-person over the right-shoulder perspective (to give that cramped perspective) with no HUD, as it all is either on your suit, or emitted as holograms.  Like the previous, there's a strategy to severing the limbs of your attackers, as opposed to the usual "head-shot" fest, so use your ammo wisely, as it is sparse.  Difficulty definitely seems a little harder this time around, but as long as your familiar with the play, you should do just fine on "normal" difficulty, though if you have a true surround-sound, you may want to play with it up, so you can anticipate the necromorphs who are trying to sneaky-sneak up on you.  Zero-gravity is ratched up this time around, rather than bounce from one flat surface to another, you have full-360 degree movement while in Zero-G, and while disorienting at first, you get used to it, and it's a blast.

Overall, the team at Visceral really out-did themselves this time.  I liken it to the first Uncharted, good, but flawed, whereas Uncharted 2 really polished the gameplay, and brought it to the next level, Dead Space 2 has it all.  Graphics are beautiful, the level of detail is astounding, Sound is damn near flawless, with a fitting score to go with.  You owe it to yourself to play one of 2011's game of the years.  Too bad, it came out so early, it'll probably be forgotten by the time the year ends. gives Dead Space 2 a 9.5 out of 10 and is available on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3

Editors Note: A copy of the game was received from the Publisher, EA for our Editorial consideration.

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