Dead Space is a sci-fi horror gaming franchise whose strengths always have lain in the tense and claustrophobic environments into which the game traditionally drops you as Isaac Clarke, a poorly equipped and ill prepared engineer now tasked with surviving a beastly invasion of monsters on his spaceship. One of the scariest games of 2008, Dead Space set up a high level of expectations for its sequel, and the bar is just as high for Dead Space 3, set to release on January 22.
With the first two games being very much about a single player experience in a horrific setting, it was more than a little surprising when EA announced that Dead Space 3 would ship with a cooperative multiplayer mode. Would the game be able to maintain its essential mood and atmosphere when the player now has a buddy to help out in those tight situations? Things got even stranger with the announcement that Dead Space 3 would be the first game to support co-op Kinect voice controls. This means that two players will be able to shout commands at the Xbox at the same time, and Kinect somehow will be able to figure out who’s saying what and map everything correctly. I have yet to try out the new game, so my personal skepticism is based entirely on my imagined scenarios of things going hilariously wrong as players accidentally make their partner lob grenades and ditch guns.
Seemingly to address that sort of skepticism head-on, EA has released a new trailer for Dead Space 3 that shows the co-op voice commands in action. I’m still not sold on the notion, but I’m intrigued enough to want to give it a shot. The video (embedded below) shows situations where the voice commands can be used, such as yelling, “Reload weapon!” when you run out of ammo. Personally, it seems like hitting a button on the controller is going to be a lot simpler, faster, and less obnoxious than talking to your TV, but I’ve been wrong about these things before. The Kinect voice commands that control the Autolog menus in Need for Speed: Most Wanted turned out to be a great addition to that game, so maybe things will work out for Dead Space 3 after all. You can check out the full video below:
What do you think about the usefulness and feasibility of adding co-op voice commands into the game? Will you be using them?