At the end of January 2023, the classic horror game Dead Space will be re-released in new HD clothes, marking the franchise’s first outing since 2013’s Dead Space 3. While it’s unknown if current developer Motive Studios is planning a revival of the survival horror series (it didn’t work out so well for fellow EA remake Command & Conquer in 2020), it’s reassuring to see the USG Ishimura spaceship back in commission.
Dead Space 2
Oddly enough, the game’s Steam launch will come bundled with a copy of the original Dead Space 2 for those fans who pre-order the title. At present, Valve’s storefront is the only place this offer exists. The 2011 sequel added a greater emphasis on action to what had been a rather slow adventure through deep space. It also gave protagonist Isaac Clarke a voice actor, something he lacked in the first game.
The Dead Space remake will actually launch on three platforms at once (PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X/S) but PC is the only modern place that Dead Space 2 can still be played, hence the gift’s exclusivity. This pre-order bonus continues a relatively new marketing trend for video gaming, i.e. making early sales more enticing for players with the addition of time-limited treats, both digital and physical.
A few notable examples from recent years include the action figure given away with pre-orders of Visceral Games’ Dante’s Inferno in 2010, as well as the now-infamous package that came with Fallout 76. In the latter case, seen here, it took seven months for developer Bethesda to deliver a canvas bag, after originally making it from the much cheaper material nylon. The pre-ordered edition of the game cost £179.99.
Of course, this kind of practice isn’t endemic to the gaming industry but entertainment seems to find it the most useful. Among online casinos, the provision of introductory gifts is used to get players on board too. The Japanese Bonus Finder website lists more than forty free spins and no deposit bonuses to this end, from casinos like Lucky Nicky, Bonds Casino, and Casumo, among others. For the full list, check here.
The Dead Space remake will also launch as an optional Deluxe Edition on all platforms. This version fills Isaac’s space wardrobe with five outfits (actually, three suits and two suit textures). Suitably gory, the new costumes include one covered in entrails and a second decorated with disembodied hands. A limited Collectors Edition was also unveiled in October, with a replica of Isaac’s helmet.
Despite its fame today, Dead Space sold poorly. Fittingly, so did its partial inspiration, the cosmic horror film Event Horizon (1997). However, in both cases, a cult following grew up around the franchise, which would eventually lengthen Dead Space’s history to date with three main series games, an eponymous mobile app, and two spin-offs for the Nintendo Wii (Extraction) and PlayStation 3/Xbox 360 (Ignition), respectively.
As for what January’s remaster will add to the original game, Isaac will now be fully voiced. Motive Studio has also inserted an Intensity Director, which is designed to match the player’s skill with enemy difficulty. The removal of all loading screens helps drag the decade-old game into the present, while an extra side quest adds more lore to the Dead Space canon. Finally, there’s potential for features that were stripped from the original due to technology constraints to be included.
Following the disappointing launch of Dead Space’s spiritual successor, December’s Callisto Protocol, the Dead Space remake has much to live up to.