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Home > Dead Space Remake (2023): A Review

Dead Space Remake (2023): A Review

A Look Into The Remade Classic of Sci-fi Horror

In a distant future, when humanity is traveling the edges of space, the USG Ishimura went dark. Enter Isaac Clarke, an engineer who is sent to repair whatever complications are affecting the ship as well as seeing his girlfriend Nicole. The moment the lights flickered and they made their way on the ship, a nightmarish disaster occurred and Isaac’s team was attacked by horrifying monsters bearing the uncanny faces of the crew. Now alone on a degrading ship, Isaac must navigate the madness of the Ishimura and face off the monsters known as the necromorphs to save Nicole.

Return to The Ishimura

If this sounds familiar, that’s because this new game is a polished up, graphical remake of the 2008 horror classic, Dead Space. Taking place once again to the setting of the Ishimura, the story is more or less unchanged with several plot points given a unique twist. The setting of the Ishimura is praised for its creepy, unsettling environment. Much of the aesthetic feel of Dead Space is reminiscent of the feel in 70s and 90s sci-fi films like Alien and Event Horizon, where the ship is just as much a part of the horror as the monsters or insane crew members.

Dead Space (2023) retains the impact of this aesthetic with updated graphics, and polished up monsters. It also retains many of the vital gameplay features of the original entry without any of the intrusive microtransactions that were added in Dead Space 3 that caused scrutiny with fans and reviewers. In a similar way to Resident Evil 2, this remake brought the game back with a new coat of paint for a new generation of gamers.

Giving Isaac Clarke a New Voice

One of the biggest departures of the Dead Space Remake is the main character himself, Isaac Clarke. In the original game, Isaac was a silent protagonist, vocalizing his distress through shouts, exclamations, and screams of pain. By Dead Space 2, Isaac becomes a fully voiced, dialogue centered character portrayed by Gunner Wright. For the remake of the first game, this didn’t change and Gunner Wright returned to voice Isaac again. As a result, he has actual character moments and dialogue with fellow survivors Kendra and officer Hammond.

Dead Space Remake

Isaac has far more character agency and reacts to situations in a more natural, vocal way. He also has more control of the missions in the plans to repair the ship, showing his knowledge as an engineer and he even responds to seeing other survivors in his search for Nicole. This decision to give Isaac a voice in the first game was enough of a big change to recreate the narrative of the game and makes him an engaging character to get invested in.

Cut Through Through Horrifying Monsters

Dead Space’s gameplay is based off of the over the shoulder combat made popular by Resident Evil 4. The camera is always on Isaac’s back and as a result, the menu, health gauge, and stasis meter can be viewed in real time without pausing the game. There is a sci-fi retro style that permeates the game and many moments with the interface are done with holographic images. Pyrokinesis and stasis are used for puzzles and combat to make certain fights easier.

The combat of Dead Space is the biggest part of the entire game. Isaac has a wide array of weapons to defeat the necromorphs, the reanimated bodies of the Ishimura’s crew members. Ways to defeat them is through strategic dismemberment, actively blasting parts of the monster’s body to either remove their weapons, slow them down, and outright kill them. 

Final Rating

Dead Space took every positive element from the original release and polished it up to modern graphics for the latest consoles. It revitalized interest in a franchise that was thought to have been canned with the shut down of the original developers. In a market overloaded with video game remakes, Dead Space stands with Final Fantasy VII, Resident Evil 2, and potentially Resident Evil 4 as the best examples of bringing back a decade old classic and giving it a new coat of paint while retaining the fun and immersive experience.

Dead Space Remake

Dead Space Remake (2023) Official Lullaby Trailer

Source: Dead Talk Live

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Guillermo Rosario
An enthusiast of Fantasy and Sci-Fi. I loved reading about the stories and worlds of video games and movies and writing on a multitude of subjects, from lists to reviews.