A common concern with horror games is that adding another person into the mix will negate the scares, kind of like watching a scary movie with a friend and making fun of it to lessen the tension. While Dead Space 3 might seem like more of an action game with two players tearing up necromorphs together, there are a couple neat tricks that developers Visceral Games pulls to make the experience a little more frightening.
Throughout the game, the co-op partner playing as second banana John Carver will experience hallucinations that the person playing Isaac Clarke won’t see. It’s up to Clarke to protect Carver as he works through these visions. This is a pretty cool way to make co-op a bit more difficult as during these moments players can’t help each other defeat the enemies they are fighting, meaning that Isaac needs to hold off the hordes by himself while Carver does the same.
Communication is key during these parts, and this is one of the many ways that co-op feels integral to Dead Space 3. While there are the standard puzzles like holding a piece of equipment down while one player climbs up or re-routing computer programs simultaneously, going through Carver’s co-op exclusive missions make the co-op campaign of Dead Space 3 that much more enticing.
Has anyone played Dead Space 3? Are you doing it co-op, or are planning to do so?
The news that Dead Space 3 would have optional co-op has been met with a giant “Meh” from both the Internet and the two resident Dead Space fans (myself and Mitch) here at GamerSushi HQ. We like Dead Space for the isolation, the fevered combat and creepy atmosphere. It’s difficult to understand how Dead Space 3 can replicate the best parts of the previous two games with a buddy next to you.
Well, we might have shrugged indifferently too soon because Visceral has been cooking up something pretty unique for us and it is quite intriguing, even for a skeptic like myself. As revealed in EGM’s preview of the game, Isaac Clarke and his new partner, John Carver, will both have terrifying hallucinations. Separately. In the demo described in the article, one player saw creepy toy soldiers, while the other saw nothing unusual. Then Carver has terrible visions of shadowy children trying to kill him, but it is all in his head. While this is going on, Isaac has to protect Carver from the necromorphs who are taking advantage of Carver’s vulnerability to attempt to slice him to pieces. If either player fails, it’s game over. Intense, no?
I have to be honest, I still don’t know if I like the idea of co-op, but good on Visceral for trying something unique. The visions remind me a bit of Eternal Darkness, an overlooked gem on the GameCube that had your character going slowly insane, resulting in scares such as your memory card being wiped or the volume on your TV being turned way up or way down. Dead Space 3’s terrors seem to be less meta than that, but it does give me hope that Dead Space 3 might still be scary to play, even with a friend. The preview doesn’t state if these are scripted events or will happen randomly, but the idea that your partner could also be your undoing is a novel one.
What say you? Does this assuage your doubts about Dead Space 3 or are you still on the fence? Comment below!
You might have noticed today that Dead Space 3 is in the news for comments coming from EA that they thought the first two games were “too scary”. The Internet at large, being the hyperbolic creature that it is, jumped to all sorts of conclusions about the direction the game is taking and the changes EA is forcing on it.
EA’s E3 2012 press conference seemed prime for backlash, what with the DLC-promoting intro and the stale showing of some of the games, but the negative reception that surprised me most was directed at Dead Space 3. That franchise has kind of a soft-spot in my heart and I felt that many other gamers shared my affection but after the co-op footage showed off a new direction for the game, things kind of went south in the public’s eyes.
Visceral Games just put out a whopping 20 minutes of Dead Space 3 gameplay footage, so you can decide for yourself on whether or not Dead Space 3 is changing for the worse.
There are no secrets in the video game industry, which is why we knew about Dead Space 3’s co-op mode almost a week before its official debut at the E3 press conference. Even though we knew it was coming, we didn’t know what it would look like, so the six-minute on stage demo was enough to get a good idea. Here’s that demo so you can watch for yourself:
So what do you guys think? Is it a little too action packed for your taste? How will Visceral Games maintain the horror with two people running and gunning? How does new character John Carver compare to Isaac Clarke? Speak up!