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More info extracted on Dead Space prequel

Posted by Christopher Clark

Executive producer Steve Papoutsis talks co-op play, controls, characters and carnage

Since being announced in early February, Dead Space: Extraction, the Wii-exclusive prequel to Electronic Arts' "action horror" hit of last year, has become the subject of much discussion, debate and even scepticism. Fans and critics alike are divided on whether the nail-biting atmosphere of the original will translate to the rail-shooter gameplay proposed for Extraction. EA employee and executive producer Steve Papoutsis recently spoke to IGN and addressed the reservations of fans thus far:

When we announced the game I was amazed at the passion Dead Space fans had for the franchise. I would tell the Sceptics that our team is passionate about innovation. Extraction is going to include all of the mechanics that made Dead Space a memorable experience: Stasis, Telekinesis, Strategic Dismemberment, and Zero-G . Our game is going to also deliver on some all new features, like Co-op, that really involves both players. Expect cooperative puzzles, brand new weapons, new characters, new enemies, new bosses, new story, and new locations. Our goal is to create an all new experience on the Nintendo Wii that feels custom built for that platform, and I think we are on track to do that.

Going into detail about some of the game's new weapons, Steve had this to say:

One of the new weapons is the Arc Welder and how it works is it fires out a bolt of energy that arc's between enemies causing more damage depending on how many enemies it comes into contact with. I want to keep the other new weapons a surprise for now.

Steve also briefly described the way in which basic offensive and defensive actions would control in Extraction:

To use Stasis the player will point their Wii Remote at an approaching enemy or object then hit the Stasis button to fire the Stasis projectile at the threat. Dismemberment works as you would expect, aim your Wii Remote at an enemies limb and fire, pop goes the Necromorph.

At this early stage of development Papoutsis is understandably light on specifics, but he also reveals the main character's name to be Levine and re-assures bloodthirsty fans that Extraction will contain "just as much gore and blood as they saw in the original game".

For many, myself included, the Wii seems the obvious platform for a rail-shooter renaissance, and with Sega's House Of The Dead: Overkill released to critical and commercial acclaim and the recent announcement of Extraction and Capcom's Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles, 2009 may well prove to be the Year Of The Lightgun. Whether or not the fans of such franchises embrace their favourite franchises being given the arcade treatment remains to be seen.

We'll have more coverage of Dead Space Extraction here at Nintendo Life as the game nears release in Q4 2009.


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User Comments (2)



Damo said:

To begin with I thought this looked a bit naff, but the more I read about it the more I like the sound of it! However, it remains to be seen if it's as scary as the 360/PS3 version, because the freedom of movement contributed greatly to the tense nature of that game. Obviously the Wii version will lack that.



Sean_Aaron said:

Well, look at Umbrella Chronicles. I'm playing it now and at times there's a definite sense of dread and tension in the air. Unlike a game with free movement you rarely have a choice of where and when to open that door or turn that corner, so I definitely think it's possible to have some scares in an on-rails game and possibly more scares than in a conventional FPS or 3rd-person action game as direct result of the fact that it's on-rails.

As someone producing a game I can see the attraction to the format because you can control how a game unfolds including where players are looking without relying heavily upon cut scenes. I've played FPS games where I missed certain events that were meant to scare simply because I wasn't looking in the right direction when they happened.

As a player given a choice between a strongly linear "free movement" game which forces you down certain paths and a game that dispenses with the artifice of choice and just says: here's the story and what you're going to do, I'll take the latter. The only way free movement means a lot to me is if there's something to do beyond shoot everything on the screen; if I'm just supposed to run around and shoot everything you may as well cut out the bad camera parts of the game and just take me on a ride.

Dead Space Extraction sounds like it's going to be more than simply an arcade lightgun game as does Resident Evil: Dark Chronicles, so I think people should wait to see exactly what the games are like before writing them off as Duck Hunt with zombies.

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