EA Motive’s upcoming remake of Dead Space will include “hundreds” of potential encounters designed to scare players who return to places they’ve already been through.
In a conversation with NME, Motive senior producer Philippe Ducharme shared that due to certain immersion-oriented changes that were made to the original game, the team that created the remake needed to add more content that players could find by exploring USG Ishimura.
“Now you don’t travel on trams and don’t take breaks between chapters, this is what we wanted to do to enhance the immersion,” explained Ducharme. Dead Space was an amazing game in terms of immersion, how can we achieve this?”
“But by doing that, in the continuous experience of a complete ship that you can explore and move around, there was a need… how do we create gameplay when you cross the ship and explore it? Because in the original game, if you completed the chapter and went all the way to the moment when you were going to jump on the tram, if you went through the chapter again, nothing happened — everything was scripted and happened only once. This cannot happen if we are trying to encourage research and repeated rounds.”
Ducharme explained that to build on this, Motive has created an “intensity director” that matches players to a “stress curve” that ensures the game remains intimidating even in areas that have already been explored.
“It generates […], whether it’s lighting effects like flickering or a complete blackout, video effects and sound effects, meetings and fake meetings — just dead bodies lying around and nothing appearing — or a mixture of all that. In fact, there are hundreds of possible scenarios out of all these different combinations of items that are possible when the player crosses and crosses the ship again. So that was one of the features we added based on continuous immersion.”
While this requires making changes to the game, Ducharme says the Motive team said that the fear enhancement in the original Dead Space was a “pillar” that allowed some additions to be made. “It reinforces the horror, if it’s something that’s been added to it, then yes – it’s a change that we should try to make,” Ducharme added.
Ducharme also shared that the developers of the remake sought not to add anything that could “offend ardent fans” of the original Dead Space.