Dead Space is Now Finished

Well, I’m done.

I don’t have too much more to say other than to say that it’s pretty good. It had a plot that propelled me to continue playing, and I think here we’re seeing the birth of a franchise (with additional media from comics and dvds, probably followed soon by toothbrushes and pogs).

I just have to say that it’s pretty tense, but the problem is that the enemies aren’t threatening. I didn’t dread every encounter. I wasn’t scared because they generally didn’t kill me, and I didn’t lose resources fighting them because they drop ammo and health like gangbusters. Some parts that could turn up the scary is if they drew your attention away from looking at the screen, for instance if you were doing a separate non-killing objective that required you to keep your eyes focused on the ground or if they provided a mini-map so that you’d be looking at your mini-map while running around, and then stuff can jump out at you. Another place where they could have more jumping scary stuff is if a corridor is empty and you are running back, thinking that the mission is over. But, even without additional jump-scare elements, the atmosphere of the game is already creepy. The sounds do a fine job of setting the mood and from reading other reviews I think it is scary enough for most people.

I’ve talked a bit about the fright factor in the game and I mentioned a few things that could make it more “frightening”, but overall, I’m not sure just making it scarier would necessarily make it a better game. As it is, it is extremely accessible and there aren’t any tedious points. I don’t think I would enjoy dreading every encounter as much as I claim that I would above. I don’t think I would like back tracking throughout entire levels looking for 4 bullets so I could get past a single room. Also, if they made each individual encounter more difficult, then we would have to lose some of the great frantic encounters where you have to fight several monsters at the same time.

All I have to say that Halloween is coming up, and as far as thriller space infestation sagas go, this is one of the finest examples of how to do it.