UPDATE: The day two podcast is now live, listen here:
Day two of our #EAUKGC2012 adventure was actually day one of GamesCom and our first visit to the show, our base of operation was the very well setup EA Media Center, our new home as it were. The order of today was hands on previews and interviews and for me that meant Dead Space 3.
There were two different demos to get to grips with, I’ll start with the gameplay demo, starting off in the same manner as the Press Conference trailer Issac is caught in a situation requiring one of his trademark suits and of course his helmet. This being the ever unlucky Issac, things don’t go entirely to plan as the the ship he is currently on appears to be tearing itself apart leaving him outside of the ship and stranded in the blackness of some titular dead space. But there are places to go and distress signals to chase.
Note: The lady that introduced me to this closed door demo explained that Issac is currently following a distress signal that appears to be from the Ellie, the heroin of prequel. Appears to be... I’ll just leave that here, as they say.
Anyway, we drifted through space heading through floating debris that reminded me of the scene from the fantastic Event Horizon where Justin is is rescued from the vacuum of nothingness by his space-dextrious Captain while simultaneously reminding me of the ‘flying through a collapsing planet’ part of the quite awful Lost in Space movie that featured Joey from Friends and was partly redeemed by the banging Apollo 440 theme tune remix. This served to remind me of what I really love about the Dead Space series – the sound, or in this situation the muffled lack of sound once again put to work perfectly.
Once we’ve eventually landed at our destination we’re into the gameplay proper but all is not as you’d come to expect from Dead Space. There are a few other people about, one notably out-ranking and attempting to order Issac about. Don’t worry, he’s having none of it, once again the necros have literally hit the giant fans and Issac is taking control but do take note that I suspect this change is not the result of happenstance, backed up by the reaction by the games producer in my interview (Coming Soon).
While the remainder of the demo could be classed at ”standard fare’ for the series there are points of note in the more subtle gameplay changes. The HUD overlay on doors and interactive objects now seems to blend better with the environment giving a slightly less jarring effect than previous games. Issac also has gained some evasive moves to deal with the harrowing issue of a necro being right up in his grill, moving him just out of reach enough to negate the need for clumsy downwards aiming.
After a rather shameful display of video game incompetency where I could’t work out how to disengage my magnetic boots to make a Zero-G jump the demo was over and it was time to move onto weapon customisation.
We go over this demo in more detail in the day two podcast that will be ready for you to enjoy very soon but suffice to say that this new system is really something special. Beyond the stock plasma cutter I never found a weapon I really felt at home with in Dead Space because I never found I had use for both fire modes. The addition of weapons building throws the rule book out and opens up the game up to some truly creative gameplay customisation. You want a chain gun with a secondary grenade launcher that fires propelled shells like and RPG but protects you from splash damage? You got it, at the cost of other bonuses sure, but you got it! You want an Uzi style primary fire with scope and auto reload combined with a single shop javelin shooter that is highly ineffective in a combat scenario? Well… What’s that? You don’t want that? OK, well then I’m not sharing my weapon blueprints with you then!