Friday, January 2, 2009

Deadspace - You got your RPG in my Horror Survival

Playing through Deadspace gives me some nostalgia, and then adds some tense experiences on top of the likes of Crafting and leveling.

Yup, you guessed it. EA's new IP venture proves that when you take some chances, you can garner success without resorting to previous motives and mechanics.

What has been a pleasure in this game is not only a visually intense setting, but mechanics that eschews the old school survival horror system of small amounts of ammo, enclosed camera angles and frustrating combat.

If we took Doom 3 and added some RPG elements of upgrading armor and weapons, and then give the player a 3rd person OTS camera view to give that enclosed suffocating feel that is the right horror survival ambiance, you get Deadspace.

The wife has pointed out that the "creepy" factor is not as high here as say an old Silent Hill or Resident Evil setting, yet, the game makes up for it by enhancing your game play with thinking before advancing mechanics, and making the right choices in weapons and armor.

The time of minimal health packs are gone, and is replaced by a system that does not "pause" the game so you can take one, which presents a more tense situation than the frustration of "Crap, I have no health left".

Instead of hoping you find that next weapon to use (like a pistol, shovel, etc.), you get a single gun that, if you wish, you can use through the whole game. Complete with the capability to upgrade the weapon with damage, capacity and reload speeds with crafting benches through the game. Luckily, this does NOT mean you are stuck with that weapon, and as well, little built in "shops" exists through the space ship you are supplanted on, to allow you to buy other cool tools to kill with.

And that is also included on top of upgrading your armor in various ways with health upgrades and inventory capacity (again an issue with most Survival horror).

Finally, the game gives you an easy way to kill the creatures that exists on the ship, but it requires you being semi patient and not slamming ammo into the mobs willy nilly. Taking off limbs helps slow or even kill the mobs faster.

The only other comment I have is that the variety of different gameplay options as you go through the space ship (at one point you are stuck trying to eliminate debris hitting the ship using a huge laser cannon) and the sound (which has been nominated on many sites for the best sound for a game in 2008) really drives up the scary fun factor.

What really hits the fun home is thinking how I can go back through and play the game on hard to see how it stacks so many words, the game is fun enough to warrant a replay later down the road. Not many games do that for me.

I am glad EA is taking a different approach to development with these new ventures. Deadspace is a load of exciting fun, and I am glad I found this title.

1 comment:

Danshir said...

While I don't have an deep comment, I found that my favorite weapon was the Plasma cutter *first weapon you get* I don't know why, but I ripped things to pieces with that weapon, even prior to upgrades.

To anyone reading this, I can vouch that Deadspace is a BLAST to play, but you may want to rent it instead of buying it. It's play time is roughly 5-7 hours.