Dead Space Extraction First Look

Terror strikes the USG Ishimura, but this time on the Wii.

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If there's one thing that Dead Space proved, it's that you don't need to reinvent a genre to be successful. It was a game that took plenty of the best, tried-and-true elements of survival horror, mixed in a few novel features of its own, and topped it off with an intensely chilling atmosphere that stands as one of the best in recent memory. In fact, what might be an even bigger risk for the team at EA Redwood Shores is taking everything that made Dead Space great and applying it to the Wii hardware for the upcoming Dead Space Extraction. This prequel was first announced back in February, though we recently had our first look at the game in the form of a brief gameplay demo at a recent EA press event.

The most striking difference between Extraction and the original Dead Space is the change in control schemes. You'll no longer control your protagonist from the tight, over-the-shoulder perspective that Resident Evil 4 made popular. Instead, Extraction takes on the form of a guided first-person shooter. In other words, it's a game whose roots you can trace back to the light-gun shooters of old such as The House of the Dead and Time Crisis. Modern trappings have been added to the mix, though: The locator trail that guided you to objectives in Dead Space returns, but now with branching paths that you can choose between, and occasional cinematic moments give you an onscreen indicator to let you know that you can move the camera all around you to pick up on optional details.

Although player movement is much more scripted and deliberate, the core action looks like it should maintain a lot of what made Dead Space so appealing. That means you'll be using a similar variety of engineering tools to dismember enemies rather than stocking up on military weaponry to overwhelm your targets with gunfire. Weapons such as the plasma cutter, ripper, line gun, and flamethrower all make their return, with other new weapons to be introduced down the road. The demo that we saw included a few of the same necromorphs contained in the original game, mostly the slasher, whose arms double as giant blades. But no matter the enemy, strategic dismemberment is still very much a key factor in Extraction. The same can be said for stasis and kinesis, the latter of which is used to pick up objects like ammo since you're set on a fixed path.

Even on the Wii, there'll be plenty of blood.

One of the nice advantages of using a Wii Remote to aim is that each gun's alternate fire--a key feature of every weapon in Dead Space--can be engaged simply by twisting the remote to the side and shooting. Remember pressing two buttons to swap between the horizontal and vertical fire on the plasma cutter when slicing off a necromorph's limbs in the original game? It's quite a bit easier now with a simple turn of the wrist. Other uses for the Wii Remote's motion-sensing functionality come into effect when you're pinned by a monster; in this case, you'll want to shake the remote and Nunchuk as quickly as you can to get them off. When entering a dark room, you can use what's called a "glow worm" by giving the remote a few quick shakes to lighten things up with a bright green glow. Another new feature is the timed reload, which lets you reload faster--a la Gears of War--if you nail the timing on a quickly filling meter. If you fail, it'll take longer to reload.

One of Dead Space's most remarkable features was the complete absence of a heads-up display. All health and ammo indicators were integrated into the character model and guns in a very subtle way. Given that you can't see your character or your gun in Extraction, there's now a more traditional HUD to give you the basic information that you need to manage things. But in keeping with the first game's minimalism, you can hit the minus button on the Wii Remote to hide it and keep the screen blank, only choosing to pull it up when you want to see it. The graphics are already some of the best that the Wii has to offer, so hiding any onscreen distractions is probably a good idea.

The glow worm is a new feature to light up darkened areas.

This particular demo was just a quick look at the fourth chapter of the game, which sees you clearing a path for a small group of bewildered survivors through the necromorph-infested hallways of the USG Ishimura to an elevator that's almost assured to take them to another floor swarming with alien zombies. We weren't able to play, but while producer Steve Papoutsis manned the controls we asked him a few questions about co-op. Yes, Extraction will support two-player co-op. It's a low-barrier setup that lets the second player simply turn on his or her remote, hit start, and jump right into the first player's game. No need to start a new game when that second player joins or quits. And rather than dividing the screen, you'll simply see a second reticle there.

The demo was rather quick, but Dead Space: Extraction has us cautiously optimistic. The big question left to be seen is how the game controls. Will you still feel engrossed in the experience when nearly all of your movement is handled by the game? We should have a better feel for that question in the coming months when we get to try the game for ourselves. Extraction is slated for a fall 2009 release.

Discussion

230 comments
rachkovsky
rachkovsky

This game looks like one I'd love to try out.

MellKat86
MellKat86

I wonder if later on, they're going to bring the prequel onto the other consoles. If that, I would defo buy it. Love Dead Space.

Azkotek
Azkotek

I'll buy and play this one for sure. Only thing I hate will be the fact that, as on-rail shooters are, you'll probably have to be quick to pick-up the loot as you see it. Chances are you'll miss a lot during fights. Looks promising nonetheless.

abualwa
abualwa

It's good for WII, but for Dead Space - we will see!

abualwa
abualwa

It's good for WII, but for Dead Space - we will see!

VXLbeast
VXLbeast

Yah, predettermined paths? I dunno, maybe it works, who knows.

NavIGOtoR25
NavIGOtoR25

It's good for WII, but for Dead Space - we will see!

Deathrebellion
Deathrebellion

its good that the Wii is making more good games but i dunno abt the rail shooter though it might be good for the Wii considering the nuchucks and all :P

LtReviews
LtReviews

After playing House of the Dead Overkill, and Umbrella Chronicles, I actually was impressed by how well consoles could add on to this former arcade-only genre. Value is my only problem with on-rail shooters- so I probably won't be gettin' this till it's down 30 bucks.

JayReviews
JayReviews

i don't know. Rail shooters always tend to suck or get boring after playing through it once. Maybe i'll rent it when i get around to it. Nothing I'm too excited about.

burns112233
burns112233

I already own the PS3 version, so I doesn't bug me much that the Wii doesn't get a port of the first Dead Space. In fact I'm glad Extraction is a different game and story otherwise why have two video game systems that play the same games? I'm just hoping EA makes a Dead Space 2 soon.

Hellknite190
Hellknite190

yeah i agree with its_a_username. if this game controlled more like the original dead space, it would most likely fail. I gotta say though, the graphics looks sweet for a wii game.

its_a_username
its_a_username

I think it was smart of them to make it a rail shooter (not that im a fan of them) because honestly if they made it like the 360/ps3 version i think it would be a lot worse

taouin
taouin

Not another Rail shooter !!!!!!!

Serraph105
Serraph105

to kgvic uh no it cant anyways I actually think the graphics look quite nice but I am still upset that they made it an on the rails shooter

kgvic
kgvic

I know the wii can do more than just this. If they focus on making wii games I think the wii can top the ps3 and the 360.

calvinsora
calvinsora

Sorry, "The intensity will decrease", not "The intensity will most likely lower the intensity". Silly me.

calvinsora
calvinsora

Rail shooters can be good, but making Dead Space into one is a risky decision. The intensity will most likely lower the intensity because of the fact that the computer controls most of your movements. Let's just hope it turns out good.

juicypigeon1
juicypigeon1

i would be happier if it was more like the original not being a rail shooter and all. ill have to see the review. this can go either way being a good game or a bad one

srdjan311
srdjan311

i don't want a rail shooter! aghh!!

dstv
dstv

why didnt they just port the origional game.....ill just buy it for my 360

Lamb_Jalfrezi
Lamb_Jalfrezi

Here was me hoping that the Wii was going to get some serious games, and what do we get? A 'rail shooter'. It may have been innovative and exciting in 1987 with Operation Wolf, but come on! Surely the Wii can be more than a christmas treat for all the family.

Hoplite32
Hoplite32

There's alot of negativity towards the Wii coming from people who call themselves 'serious gamers' something to do with the fact that it's family friendly perhaps, but the Wii has all the potential to be everything and more than Xbox or PS3 can be. Thankyou EA.

kamicolo
kamicolo

Ohk so what's the reason for making the game "on rails"?? Does putting the game on rails increase the image quality?

k16campbell
k16campbell

Cool this game looks great! Yeah.....cool

SmartGhost
SmartGhost

ok wii can become hardcore if needed just look at som of the titles like NO more hero's and house of the dead overkill but fps games kick ass thx wii

MrHatnClogs
MrHatnClogs

I'm kinda glad rail shooters are making a comeback, it brings back the the awesome days of playing in the arcades at bowling alleys, laser tag areas, miniture golfcourses, or what ever birthday places there are, but one question though, WERE ARE THE TIME CRISIS GAMES IN ALL THIS!!!!

MonsieurLynx
MonsieurLynx

Nowadays Wii games became so weak in front of games of the other consoles. I think dead space will be an light in the spot for who adquired it. the only games I estimate in it for a while are: Smash Brothers, Metroid ( with it's all smooth control) and Galaxy. No more. It's sad because I loved nintendo consoles for a long time. I still think the 64 was the better ever!

LiquidFox
LiquidFox

I think they will do fine with it. If it looks this good now, I doubt they'll mess it up this late in the game. Rail shooters can be good. House of dead, Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles, classic arcade shooter Area 51, all rail games, all good.

jordan_johnson
jordan_johnson

"speed45823 Posted Apr 14, 2009 3:47 am GMT yea...not a rail shooter but a "GUIDED FIRST PERSON EXPERIENCE"...a new video game genre? lol. EA knows how to munipulate." Maybe if you actually listened you would notice that what he describes isn't like your normal rail-shooter. I'm actually gonna pick this up. So far the only Wii game i've actually been looking forward to.

erkin6666
erkin6666

i can't believe that wii got best dead space plus its fps which pc version should have been pfft s_cks to be pc gamer this days you pay a lot more you get a lot less

tonyhawksP8
tonyhawksP8

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

cyw1988
cyw1988

the graphics look pretty good... settings are all there. But the only question is whether will it be able to emulate the atmosphere and tension players felt in the original game? We all know that RE4 worked very well on the Wii so the original Dead Space concept would have worked too. So if EA screws this up they're gonna be getting it big time. Hopefully the game turns out well.

Frostmore33
Frostmore33

i actually hope that it will be like a serious version of the house of the dead over kill. that was a cool game and its on rails

speed45823
speed45823

yea...not a rail shooter but a "GUIDED FIRST PERSON EXPERIENCE"...a new video game genre? lol. EA knows how to munipulate.

Hazeman234
Hazeman234

Idk about this cause i own a wii and i know they could make like R4 Wii edtion or Metroid Prime but a rail shooter. Man idk if i should get cause i liked the 1st one so i hope they change some things on it or ill just rent

Bambii12633
Bambii12633

like i said before this game WILL inspire the big game creators to make more spectaculare games for wii and i know all other wii onwers wont that to happen.

Dlarrain
Dlarrain

I think that EA Games won´t use this great lisence on a poor game, it looks great, imagine a good rail shooter, the charge metod is quiet well and if they make a lot of chapters, a good 2 player mode, a good gameplay and some strong extras this game can be ever better than the last one.

DSgamer64
DSgamer64

The graphics need touching up, there is no excuse why this game can't even look as good as Doom 3 or Metroid Prime 3.

gold_prevalence
gold_prevalence

I was hoping it wouldn't be a rail-shooter. Sorry fellow wii gamers, but I won't be getting this one.

saihjee
saihjee

Oh come on! There's PC version on it! why is it on Wii! Pleaassee PC Version!

Jason_Morris
Jason_Morris

Loved the original, but I'm sceptical about this being on rails, or "guided".

MoonMarvel
MoonMarvel

@Andy-Himura - I don't think they are. FPS are getting a tad old, so many out there with their bad controls. Rail Shooters are kind of new to me because outside of arcades I never really saw many, do this is cool to me. I haven't finished dead space yet so I may get this if I ever get a wii.

Andy-Himura
Andy-Himura

Rail-shooters are getting old, for me they are a bit boring.. but we will see...

GodsPoison
GodsPoison

Meh, i thouroughly enjoyed my dead space, i even went out of my way to get that platinum trophy, and as much as i enjoyed the game i cant really see going back and replaying the same story in a new perspective with rail shooter controls........just saying that those of us who have played Dead Space probably wont look into extraction....

crimped
crimped

seems like a good game. if your not sure rent it and see.

GhostfaceL94
GhostfaceL94

Ps3 version of Dead Space was raw good. Wii owners I hope you guys enjoy this game.

Shadowtails9000
Shadowtails9000

Why does every freaking game company think 'Wii+rail shooter=PROFIT. Rail-shooters are getting old! We already have RE:UC and house of dead for the Wii rail shooters, give us an actual scary game that we aren't pre-controlled! At least Fatal Frame 4 should be scary... and actually let you walk backwards...