Note to self: never eat a packet of Quavers while watching any more Dead Space remake videos ever again. It’s not a good idea for choking reasons. EA and Motive just held a 14th anniversary livestream in honour of the original Dead Space – ivory, if you were wondering – and I can not-so-safely say that the new footage shown was crisp-gaggingly intimidating. You can check it out for yourself by watching the trailer below. Try not to be too long, won't you?
Creative director Roman Campos-Oriola said that Motive have tried to recapture the survival horror roots of the Dead Space series for the remake. Motive are concentrating on three things they think are key to what makes the series scary. Those would be immersion in the horror of being trapped on a deserted spaceship overrun by Necromorphs, the setting of the USG Ishimura itself, and what Campos-Oriola calls the “strategic action” of selectively blasting off chunks of enemies, piece by piece.
It’s only when you see the 2008 original alongside the remake that you realise just how much Motive are faffing with this version of the game to bring it into the 2020s. Still, Campos-Oriola insists they’re staying true to the horror, and what he describes as “creative gameplay”, of the OG Dead Space. Not content with just a graphical zhuzhing up though, Motive are chucking in something called the Intensity Director. The Intensity Director is an encounter and spawning system that dynamically adjusts what spacelad Isaac Clarke has to deal with as he’s wandering the corridors of the Ishimura.
That might mean Necromorphs pop out to say hi, or it could just be environmental effects such as lighting or smoke, or sounds to put you ill at ease. Campos-Oriola explained that the Intensity Director was mostly being used for when Isaac revisits areas of the hulking derelict, and for side-quests. As I’ve reported before, the Ishimura is now a place Isaac can wander freely. I'm intrigued to see more of how the Intensity Director works in action, as it sounds mint.