Dead Space vs. Dead Space 2

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So using all of the above, you can turn yourself into one bad mutha in Dead Space 2. But jeez, whatta they got in there? King Kong?

Well they might as well since you're going to have to face a metric ton of alien monstrosities of all shapes and sizes including the usual suspects from the original game such as Slashers, Leapers and Lurkers (oh my!)

You'll also be facing some new kids on the block which will give all but the iron-nerved a serious case of the heebie-jeebies. Notable among these are mini-Slashers which I like to call the Screaming Claw Children each of which can be taken down with a single Plasma Cutter shot. This would be all good and well except they typically attack you in large packs while screaming maniacally and if one of them gets close enough, it will climb all over you triggering a quick time event forcing you to fight it off. Of course once you do, it's pretty much too late as all the rest of them will have had time to swarm around you and will lather, rinse and repeat you into a dribbling pile of goo on the floor. The first time I faced a band of these evil little brats (I won't spoil it and say where) was one of the most unnerving video game experiences I ever had.

Dead Space 2 screenshot - The Pack

Somebody needs a time-out...

Elsewhere in the game you'll get introduced to some sweat breakers officially known as Stalkers each of which resembles a kind of alien velociraptor. These are usually found areas which contain a lot of cover behind which they can dart suspensefully to and fro biding their time waiting to the right moment to come at you at a breakneck speed. Dealing with a warehouse full of these murderous bipeds is an equally hair raising experience as you realize to your horror that these buggers simply won't come out and fight fair and will gladly wage a hit-and-run war of attrition waiting for that one moment where you slip up.

Other newbies in the monster department include little piles of pulsating goop called Cysts which are found sticking to walls in especially dark areas. These act like traps since they are well camouflaged and usually make their presence known only after you managed to blunder your way right up close and personal with them at which point they'll spit out an explosive blob that deftly knocks you on your keester. Players soon learn to walk softly and carry a big stick (read: Plasma Cutter) whenever their sickly telltale moans are heard.

You'll also encounter some other party poopers called Pukers whose projectile vomit can drench you with last night's supper, the effect of which temporarily slows your movements to a crawl. Wait. What? The aliens have a stasis attack now? (*gulp*)...

Other notable differences between Dead Space and Dead Space 2:

  • Zero-G jumping is no longer simply launching from one surface and sticking to another. Now you can actually free float in space and fly around wherever you like. Very, very cool.
  • Game chapters (i.e., levels) are no longer bookended by tram rides. Instead chapters are defined simply by a text heading silently appearing in the bottom right corner of the game screen announcing the new chapter. This looks really slick but unfortunately amidst everything else that is going on, it's easy to overlook that you've begun a new chapter. (Not sure I like this but what-the-hey.)
  • There is no more map. Although since you still have the locator tool —which draws a line on the floor pointing you in the direction of your objective— some might consider having a map redundant. The Dead Space 2 locator tool can also be configured to point you in the direction of the nearest store, bench or save station. Nevertheless, I very much enjoyed using the 3D holographic multi-level map in the original game so this is something I will sorely miss.
  • Isaac now talks which gives him a distinct personality you can really invest in. By the way, the voice acting and the script in Dead Space 2 are both superb.
  • The new game+ mode, where you can start a new game using all the upgraded weapons and resources acquired in a previous playthrough, now allows you to play on a higher difficulty level which is, in fact, the way it should have been handled in Dead Space 1 which forced you to play a new game+ in the same difficulty setting of your original playthrough. Big thumbs up for this, Visceral.
  • After completing the game, you unlock Hardcore mode, a Survivalist/Zealot hybrid difficulty setting designed for the criminally insane who believe they can complete the game using only 3 saves (meaning you must complete the game in no more than four sittings). You're also completely derived of checkpoint restarts. When you die, that's it, that's all. Start over from your last save game. Holy crap, Batman.
  • Dead Space 2 now has a multiplayer mode.. (*face palm*) Why, oh why, is everyone and their monkey's uncle jumping on this bandwagon? Anyway, now you can experience Dead Space in multiplayer mode by joining a team of other players online pitting their skills against another. You can play as a human or a necromorph, earn experience points and level up into a force to be reckoned with (or into a source of amusement for others depending on your abilities).

All in all, despite any criticisms I may have, I think Dead Space 2 is a fabulously slick production that will take you on a white knuckly action hero scare trek rivalling that of Ripley's journey in Aliens. The graphics are gorgeous, the award winning sound is back with all its dripping, clanging and shrieking, the gameplay is spectacular and it's got replay value up the ying-yang with new game+ and hardcore modes.

Alright, so enough with the analysis. Buy Dead Space 2, you may ask?

YES. Absolutely. Best $60 I spent on gaming in the past 12 months. Seriously.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go play through it again.


~ Major Slack

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17 Responses to Dead Space vs. Dead Space 2

  1. Mike Chambers says:

    I absolutely LOVED Dead Space 1. IMO, it's clearly one of the top 3 games of the past 15 years (or maybe ever).... Good review, but I can't quite bring myself to give DS2 the same praise as the first. It's hard to fully put my finger on it, but the feeling of the game is just not the same. The complete isolation of DS1 in those tiny closed-in and often clausterphobic hallways, and to some extent the clunkier controls, added to the scare-factor of the first game and are some of the things that made it such an amazing one.

    Dead Space 2 is good still, although I got bored enough with it to never actually finish the game. I got a bit more than half-way through, IIRC -- just never was compelled enough to complete it. I just installed it again, which is what prompted me to look for a review from somebody else comparing it with the first leading me here. I am going to give it another play and see if I enjoy it any better this time. I really want to.

    Dead Space 3 is coming out in a few months, but my expectations are low. You actually have a partner playing in the game WITH Isaac? No, no, no. This can't be good. That just ruins everything Dead Space is about and that makes it scary, imo. Maybe it will be better than I am expecting. I hope so.

  2. mcbull says:

    well the dead space 1 has a very very bad aiming on ATI video cards wich means when trying to aim its just moves sooo freaking slowly even when ur mouse sensititvity is on 100 so u may wanna turn off Vsync. Vsync is a frame limiter wich means while playing a dead space u have only 30 FPS so if u dont like lag u may wanna turn this off. In Dead space 2 there are everything oppsite way when u turn Vsync off it gonna have terrible fast moving on a mouse control wich means hard to steady ur aim so if i play Dead Space 2 i have Vsync:ON BUT if i play Dead Space1 i have Vsync:OFF Thats my style

  3. james says:

    Will you be playing Dead space 3 at all slack?

  4. Jack Evans. says:

    To all those older guys who feel that video games are purile, and a complete waste of time...I have news for you. I am 49 years old, and yes, I enjoy video games. Mr Slack sir, your walkthroughs are indispensible to people like me. Until I saw your 'The making of a Major Slack video,' I never realised how much work went into making one of your famed walkthroughs. Kudos to you Sir.

    Your commentary is thoroughly entertaining, which definately makes you stand out from all those other muppets, who also produce walkthrough videos. I discovered you by complete accident, however since that sublime revelation, I now always refer others, to your videos. Long may you reign......

  5. Major Slack says:

    @fhrvzuidam, Thanks for your feedback! :)

  6. fhrvzuidam says:

    Actually this game is the reason that i stumbled onto your channel.
    I'm a avid gamer of 42 myself and play a LOT of games(on the ps3) Especially the thriller genre like Resident Evil 1,2,3,4,5, dead nation, silent hill, prototype, dead island and the adventure genre prince of persia(all), tombraider, God Of War 1,2,3 ,etc.
    What is usually do is carry on a playtrhough all by myself and afterwards look for a walktrhough too see if i missed something(secrets) or if it can be played better/smarter.
    And found your channel by surprise and relief, to see that some-one of a certain age can still love playing games as much as i do is comforting and pleasant to say the least.
    I totally agree on your comment that although DS1 scared me a lot(especially the end with Nicole) DS2 is definitely NOT less creepy.... Scared me the willies once in a while..
    And i too missed the map a lot in the beginning, i favoured that feature above the 'thin blue line'....
    Although the multifunctiality of the locator tool HAS come up handy once or thrice.
    I quite agree with the sentiment that almost every game nowadays 'MUST' have a multiplayer is in a lot of cases a total degradation of the game, and not always MORE for your money or fun- experience.
    Especially since next to a fun-player I'm also a trophyhunter and some of them are only obtainable trough multiplayer..... wheeehhh no 100 % trophy sometimes......
    Although........... in some cases(as it would be with you i can guess) it CAN be quite amusing to play online.
    For one NOBODY believes you if you're a +40 year old gamer, especially when you can only chat-TEXT online.(everybody thinks i always reverse my digits)( and when they DO believe you it's a fricking riot to see how they react.), I even had a 'friend' who went on telling his father that he played online games with a 42 year old guy as so to get of his case about it(you're old-fashioned dad!) and it actually worked too!!!)LOL
    And two, i think it can do a lot for the 'hits' or subscribers on your channel.
    So here is my penny for you, and keep up the good work... or in your case HOPE YOU NEVER STOP HAVING FUN!!!!

  7. Major Slack says:

    @Eamon, If you're not very good at sniping, don't buy the seeker rifle.

  8. Eamon says:

    Dude, i just discovered you and i love the work you do man! the first vid of yours i watched was the dead space 2 chapter 1 part 2 (i think) and i instantly fell in love with ur commentary. you also actually give WALKTHROUGHS (i cnt spell so sue me) unlike those other bosoes who put up play throughs the day the game comes out. you are now my favorit you tuber (making that a term now) keep up the good work man! also, what is ur opinion on the seeker rifle? ive heard that it can beast stalkers but im horrible at sniping in every other game, should i buy it? or is it a piece of crap?

  9. Josh says:

    Slack, just plain awesome. I bought Dead Space several weeks ago and just can't put it down. Thus I was forced to buy Dead Space 2. I can't say enough of how much I enjoy your work on the walkthroughs. Just classic stuff and I hope you will continue to rip games apart with your straight forward honest commentary. All I can say is I'm a big fan and truly appreciate all the time and effort you put into your reviews and walkthroughs.

  10. nick says:

    :D you made a referrence to my favorite movie!!!!! "So what do they got in there, king king?" That makes me happy haha.

  11. Mookification says:

    Dude, I couldn't agree more about how everything has to have multi-player now. For one thing running around with your friends is the exact opposite of what Dead Space is about (for me anyway).

  12. parker says:

    hey slack i just love your walkthrous and i just think your a great comidean [sory about spelling]

  13. Major Slack says:


    Yes, it's true that I initially found the map in Dead Space 1 somewhat confusing but I would definitely prefer that to no map at all. And, in fact, I actually got used to the map in Dead Space 1 and if I recall correctly, I remember commenting in my walkthrough that I was trying to wean myself off the Locator and use the map more to better acquaint myself with the layout of the game levels.

  14. AndImStoned says:

    Now...this is what I call dedication. You do love games, don't you? :) Now...if I recall correctly (and I'm sure on this one) you said "map sucks by the way". That got stuck in my mind because at that moment I thought: "f*ck yeah, agreed".

    I kinda missed the map at the beginning of the game only because I was used to it. But when I didn't find it I just said "oh well, they realized it was so bad they just took it out" or perhaps, designing the map of a huge space station wasn't worth it. Or maybe I'm just overthinking stuff (again).

    I'm going to love this walkthrough, kind sir. I just know it.

  15. shaggiefresh187 says:

    just read yur review good job slack u couldnt have done a better job writeing it so detailed cant wait until tomorrow for more dead space 2 see u around slack

  16. Brwni says:

    I love your reviews and playthroughs Slack, I hope you are enjoying what are you doing, because I am!!!


  17. TLMonkey says:

    I totally agree with you, the map should'ave been there, and it's darker than DS1. Darker than it should have been, and I mean DARKER, to the point there's many areas in which you'll find yourself aiming or using the tracking system just to see 3 steps from you. Of course, our "no-longer-alive" friends take advantage from that to give us a "nice surprise". Even with that little problem - solvable by increasing the brightness - I think DS2 is the best survival horror game I've ever played, along with its predecessor.

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