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Dead Space: Chapters 1-4

Dead Space Remastered - Can a new gamer successfully stomp out the Nechromorphs?

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One of the most anticipated games for 2023 was the remastered release of the 2008 hit Dead Space! The 2008 science/fiction third-person shooter game is still one of the most highly regarded games ever created. I had wanted to play this one for years! So when I heard the remastered version was coming out I almost immediately preordered it for my new PC. However, it is also available on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S. I have played two other horror games previously - Slenderman and The Evil Within. Both were great but I had always wanted to play more horror games. As launch day approached I found myself wondering if I would be able to handle being thrown into this world that so many people already knew and have fun in addition to learning the game and gaming on a PC in general.

In both games, you play Issac Clarke, a systems engineer on the Kellion who is sent on a mission to find and repair the USG Ishimura. Upon arrival on the ship, things are in disarray. Some sort of monsters (Necromorphs) have inhabited the ship and after the Kellion is destroyed the remaining members need to try and find a way to fix the USG Ishimura and get her home safely. While trying not to be turned into Necromorphs. There is a larger storyline with the church of Unitology but I won't spoil anything!

I was a bit nervous to boot up the game for the first time. However, what I found was something beautifully challenging. From the jump scares to the imagery - both bloody and not - even the soundtrack will have you fully immersed in this game. You start slow and with only one weapon - The Plasma Cutter. This was nice for me since I don't have the skills to jump between weapons and reload in time. Also, you do get helpful hints throughout the game, normally written on the walls in blood. Like the one “cut off their limbs” - a literal lifesaver.

The first chapter gives you an intro to the controls. They are pretty simple overall. Walk, aim, shoot, stomp. You have different hotkeys for certain items like med packs and Statis recharge. Statis can allow you to slow down an object for a period of time. This can come in handy when fighting larger monsters or dealing with electrical issues. There is also a button to give you navigational information which is helpful when you don't have a map on the screen. There is a challenging room in Chapter 1 - you are given a good amount of Necromorphs to handle but again ‘cut off the limbs’. Chapter 1 finishes with you acquiring Kinesis - this lets you move and hold objects in a set gravity field. Kinesis also allows you to throw objects at the monsters and move large items. You also gain another weapon toward the end of Chapter 1 - the Pulse Rifle.

Chapter 2 sends you on a mission through the medical unit in order to collect two items so you can blow up the barrier and get into the morgue. Chapter 2 has a lot more Necromorphs and a few more rooms than Chapter 1. The game seems a lot darker and scarier the more you get settled in. The developers do a great job of making you jump around every corner with the sounds of the Necromorphs moving in the vents. Once you blow the barrier you need to head into the morgue to retrieve a key card from the USG Ishimura Captain. Acquiring this ends Chapter 2 and gives you a new security clearance. Which means more looting!

Chapter 3 involves Issac heading to the Engineering deck so he can get the engines up and running. You become more familiar with kinesis and stasis to help with this objective. There is also more environmental stuff to use to kill the Nechromorphs. Another perk is finding the ripper gun as you make your way to the Engineering deck. You also get to experience a room in more zero gravity than you have experienced. This room at the end also requires you to pay attention to your oxygen levels while trying to escape the room and continue on the mission. Once Isaac is making his way to the Engine Room you will find the next weapon, a flamethrower. Chapter 3 feels like a lot of objectives and learning the game more in-depth. I really felt like I was getting the hang of it by this point. Then you hit the Engine Room, this room is full of Nechromorphs but there is tons of loot and lots of tools in the environment to use to your advantage. This Chapter had a lot more scares and made me even more excited for the next chapter.

The first objective of Chapter 4 is to meet up with Hammond on the Bridge. He will give you an updated security access card and then Isacc will need to get the cannons back online so they can stop the asteroids from damaging the ship further. Once you leave the Bridge to start that mission you meet a new enemy. Follow Hammond's hint to successfully defeat this Nechromorph. You find another weapon in this chapter but again the game gives you time to find your footing with everything. I appreciated the gradual increase in difficult tasks and tougher enemies. The game also gets dark visually in this chapter. Needing to have your weapon ready so you get that extra light makes you feel more immersed and on edge. I will say this chapter had a tough section toward the end when recalibrating the lasers. I could not figure out what I needed to do for about 10 minutes. That so far has felt like the only unclear thing and other players have found frustration in that objective as well.

Overall I found the first few chapters of Dead Space very enjoyable. I loved that the game gave you a challenging but steady introduction to the weapons and controls. The hotkeys make learning everything seem smooth. The visual horror aspect is phenomenal from the blood everywhere to the globs of flesh and the jumpscares. The audio is also terrifying. Hearing the Nechromorphs in the vents and the perfectly timed screams make you want to jump in an escape pod and skedaddle. I believe this game is worth the hype and would be a fine introduction to horror games for a new player!

9.8 Screams out of 10

Stay tuned for my full review of the game once I have completed it! If you are interested in watching me play the game head over to my Youtube Channel Meaghan’s Murder Games to see my Dead Space Playthroughs!

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