So alone, so good.
Entering the Dead Space 3 booth at E3, I was met with a chill, something sorely lacking from the entirety of the conference. Seriously, these small enclosed spaces, packed to the brim with nerd and rarely having their air recycled, get way too hot. But Electronic Arts used the snowy environments in Visceral's sequel to splurge on an air conditioning unit.
Still, I didn't care how comfortable I was sitting there watching Dead Space 3. The revelation that a co-operative partner could drop in and drop out had me more than a little pissed at EA and their need to shoehorn multiplayer into each of their games.
It wasn't until the demo started that I learned single-player would remain a single-player affair. There is no AI-controlled co-operative partner. Cutscenes are different depending on whether you're playing solo or with a partner. YOU WILL NOT HAVE A TAG ALONG.
Dead Space 3 will still be a solitary outing if you so choose, and that made all the difference. Knowing that, I sat back, releaxed, and watched as Isaac Clarke was impaled by a necromorph boss's tentacle. Of course the gore didn't stop there, what with Isaac's limbs still attached to his body.
These are the things I love about the Dead Space series: You're alone, you're scared, and you are more vunerable than you could ever imagine. The fact that the developers at Visceral purposefully die at one point in the demo demonstrates the pride they take in their death animations.
And don't worry, just because Clarke and company are lost on a snowy landscape doesn't mean the scares aren't there. In one section, a snowstorm actually inhibited visibility like the shadowy sections of the Ishimura. Dead Space 3 certainly seems to be cut more from Dead Space 2's cloth, but it's nice to see features being added without alienating what made the series so appealing in the first place.
Dead Space 3 is slated to release on February 2013.