Review by Hawaiiboy117
"One shot, one severed limb"
The sequel to the amazing game Dead Space is back, and it has come back with a punch. It's been two years since Isaac's horrifying trip through the USG Ishimura, and even though he was able to dismember the physical demons, the demons in his mind are still haunting him. It's three years later now, and Isaac is back, and ready to kick some necromorph ass.
If you enjoyed the twists of games like the original Dead Space, and Bioshock, you're going to love the way that this game messes with your mind. The story is absolutely incredible, and full of amazing moments, from things like head-butting a necromorph to *spoiler*ing the giant *spoiler* with the *spoiler*. I couldn't put this game down because I was always thinking "once I found out what happens to this person, I'll save and stop." but there was always something else to suck me back into it.
Isaac came into contact with the marker in the first game and is suffering from a unique form of dementia that causes you to doubt things that you see. "Is that necromorph really there? Is that really my dead girlfriend?" It's all up to you to decide which adds a whole new level to gameplay. You wake up and start the game in a straightjacket, which should say a lot about your mental state in the game, and you've got somebody helping you try to escape the sprawl, and all the while fighting both physical and mental demons, both of who for the most part want to kill you. It's a dark twisting slide down the rabbit hole the entire way, and I couldn't have asked for more.
Dismembering the necromorphs in first game was enough fun, but combine that with the graphics engine of 2011, and you've got two words that will very rarely appear next to each other: pretty dismemberment. lol. Everything you do feels so much more satisfying when you're able to see individual drops of blood from the last enemy you killed. It's incredible.
And even the time when you're not killing necromorphs is stunning. Visceral Games really turned up the horror at every level, and the graphics are no exception. Flickering lights, that are quite prone to suddenly dying on you are incredibly common... yet they never get old. Seeing objects seemingly rolling of their own accord around a corner always leads you to wonder what's gonna be around that corner, only for the necromorphs to sneak around behind you, and the noises... everything you hear could be another necromorph around the corner wanting to rip you in two. Even simple noises, like alarm clocks going off scared the crap out of me when it's dead quiet. The game did such a good job setting the mood of the game that even a toilet flushing made me jump at one point.
In between the battles, boring gray corridors of the USG Ishimura are no longer the standard. Staring out into the deep expanse of space with a backdrop of Saturn was truly spectacular. Shop displays full of clothing items, and the next big thing in the Sprawl looking normal from afar, then coming in close, and seeing them covered in blood had goosebumps going up my spine. This game has twisted beauty, but it is beauty nonetheless.
Everything from the first game is back, and done better than ever. Killing necromorphs is just as fun, if not even more fun do not only to the graphics being updated, but now dismembering serves more of a purpose than just killing a necromorph, but I'll get to that in a second. Stasis is back, and it's uses both in battles and puzzles are endless, and now it regenerates on it's own similar to Dead Space Extraction, but the real place where I saw improvement was the kinesis ability. In Dead Space, all I ever really used kinesis for was puzzles, and getting far away crap I didn't want to bother walking to get. In this game, as you sever for a example a slasher's arm, you can then pick it up using kinesis, and skewer the thing with it's own arm, impaling it on a wall (which is also and achievement). It never got old for me, and it's an incredibly useful ability because it conserves ammo, and ammo is equivalent to life in this game, more so than in your average third person shooter.
Some of the enemies of old make a comeback, like the above mentioned slasher , the brute, lurker, leapers, etc. There are also a plethora of new enemies Isaac must now deal with too, like "the pack", a group of infected infants who are basically cannon fodder by themselves, but the thing is they swarm Isaac... like a pack, and while individually they are weak, a large group of them can quickly pose a threat to you. There is the puker, who's name pretty much gives away what it does. It either pukes a ball at you that slows down you're movement, or projectile vomits spew at at you from close range to damage you, and then there is the freakiest (in my opinion) of the new necromorphs, the stalker. They travel in small packs, and take cover so that you can't kill them easily, then rush at you with the speed of of a rampaging slasher. They are terrifying!
Every weapon from the first game is back (I think) including the never leave home without it gun: the plasma cutter, but this time there are special abilities for some weapons, like the plasma gun can now set enemies on fire when fully leveled up. There are also plenty of new weapons like the javelin gun (my favorite) which can impale enemies to walls, and electrocute them just to be sure they're dead, and the seeker rifle which is essentially a sniper rifle just to name two.
Zero-G has had a huge revamp, and is no longer jumping from spot to spot. Now, you are able to fly around using jets from your boots which really makes the zero-G areas a lot more fun in my opinion, and opens up all kinds of new puzzles, and fighting styles (many of which are utilized). Floating in zero-G is just a ridiculous amount of fun because of the freedom it offers. In Dead Space 1, I couldn't wait for those spots to be over, in Dead Space 2 I don't want them to end.
There is still the new game + option, but this time, an interesting idea has been added that I haven't seen in any other game, the ability to bring stuff into a higher difficulty was greatly appreciated. For example, you can start out on easy, max out all of your guns, then progress to Zealot (very hard) and keep all of your equipment from the easy play-through. It's there if you want to use it, or you could always just start from square one if you wanna be a hard@ss.
I enjoyed the multiplayer, but there was more that could have been done with it. Basically, you are either the humans who are attempting to accomplish a set objective, or you are the necromorphs who are attempting to stop them. It feels similar to Invasion from Halo Reach if you've played it. You start out with a base load out, and as you progress farther, better and better load outs become available. It's fun to play every once in a while, especially with a friend, but I recommend buying the game more for it's single player than multi-player.
Amazing story full of twists
Improvement over Dead Space 1 in every way
New Enemies and weapons
Scary as hell
Slightly lacking multiplayer
Isaac is an idiot (a bad@ss, but still an idiot) who always takes the riskiest jobs possible.
10 + 10 + 10 + 10 + 8 = 9.6 (counted graphics and sound seperatly)
Note* This is my first review ever, so I really hope it helps.
Thanks for reading!!!
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 01/31/11
Game Release: Dead Space 2 (US, 01/25/11)
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