Dead Space Remake Review

Horror classic raised from the dead to take over

As I slowly moved through the blood drenched industrial walls of the USG Ishimura, the familiar but still nerve-wracking location where the 2008 original Dead Space took place, I am awestruck at how a fresh coat of paint and added details made the video game experience brand new all over again.

Developed by EA Motive, whose work consists of Star Wars games such as Battlefront II and Squadrons, the Dead Space remake is that of a purist take. Being a hardcore fan of the franchise, I welcomed this process as the original already holds up surprisingly well 15 years later.

I was hesitant to the changes made to a classic game. Aft er my 11-hour meticulous playthrough, I have decided this game was made to achieve the true vision that the original horror survival game wanted to have all those years ago.

The story beats remain mostly intact except for some plot twists. Spaceship engineer Isaac Clarke is on a repair team responding to a distress call to the USG Ishimura, a mining ship in illegal space.

He is also looking for his girlfriend on board, only to find the crew have been turned into monstrosities dubbed “Necromorphs.”

The biggest change comes in in the form of Clarke, voiced this time around instead of being a silent shell like in the original. Actor Gunner Wright, who provided the voice for Clarke in Dead Space 2 and 3, returns to this reimagining and his performance does not disappoint. Every line was delivered with the sincerity and authenticity of someone who is having his worst day at work to say the least.

This change gives the player insight into Clarke’s mentality and emotional wellbeing during this journey that wasn’t shown in the 2008 version. His face is modeled aft er Wright which adds more emotional weight. We can see this in the animations of Clarke/Wright’s face as it reacts naturally to the situations he faces.

Besides facelifts for all the characters, the Ishimura feels more realized in this retelling as well. Areas of the game were expanded, allowing for more freedom to explore and learn the grisly details of what happened onboard. The player can also go back through the entire ship. This is encouraged to explore previously closed off areas that you couldn’t before upgrading your in-game security clearance.

Motive introduced what they call the intensity director, an AI that will ramp up tension through thousands of possible events such as vent covers overheating, lights going out or doors slowly opening giving you that fear that it might shut on you as you’re walking through. All these are further driven by the redesigned audio where every shot from repurposed mining tools that make up your limb dismembering arsenal to the low humming of the ship’s engine help make the experience visceral and alive.

This is a remake for the fans, while also the definitive way to play Dead Space for newcomers. I believe the game is a contender for Game of the Year and is a must-buy for horror survival fans and anyone looking for a scary, but good time.