If you click on a link and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Read our editorial policy.

The RPS Advent Calendar 2023, December 20th

Cut off their what, sorry?

A close up of Horace the Endless Bear looking at a big pile of presents with his name on, next to a plate of cookies with a glass of milk. It's the 2023 RPS Advent Calendar!
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun

Interesting. This door on the Advent Calendar has an instruction scrawled on it in blood: TURN THE DOOR KNOB. There's a remote recorder on the floor there, and if you press play a voice, coughing itself to death, says "You have to turn the door knob!". After a few minutes standing there, you think to yourself, "Maybe I should try turning the door knob?"

You open the door and a million dead bodies roll out and physics-crash into themselves an all the furniture - in high definition! It's the Dead Space remake.

Isaac injects a Wheezer necromorph with a fatal enzyme in the Dead Space remake.
Image credit: EA

Kiera: Cast your mind back, if you can, to the very beginning of the year. The nights were dark and the last vestiges of Christmas had faded into memory. And in this liminal time of year, we were suddenly carried off to a mining ship in distant space, where the crew had gone silent and there were no apparent signs of life. With only the faint gurgling sounds and the pitter-patter of talons scraping the ground, we turned to see a long-limbed, slavering monster we thought was long dead. A Necromorph.

We are, of course, speaking about the Dead Space Remake of January 2023. As a horror fan, this game was on my radar well ahead of its release, and it didn't disappoint. In it, you step once again into the heavy and newly gussied-up shoes of engineer Isaac Clarke, sent to the USG Ishimura to investigate the sudden disappearance of the crew (and search for his girlfriend Nicole as he goes).

To the horror of all involved, which is basically just you and Isaac, you soon realise that the ship has been overtaken by a virus that has twisted and mutated the corpses of the crew into monstrous taloned creatures. As an engineer with little to no experience in fighting, you must utilise the tools around you to both survive the virus and unravel the mystery behind it. Doing it all again in the remake, of course, means the glorious return of the Plasma Cutter - alongside many other weapons to help chop limbs and sow destruction.

To the relief of many fans of the original, the remake stays faithful to the source, while introducing new rooms to explore (and plunder like the little loot goblin you most likely are) as well as updated graphics, so you can see the Necromorphs in all their strikingly grotesque glory. On that note, these iconic bad boys of sci-fi horror come back with a bang; with the aptly-named Dead Space 'peeling system' you can watch as you strip layers of flesh off of them in a panic to kill or be killed. Item economy must be managed, because there's no such thing as a quicksave. You need to visit saving stations to secure progress, which is, perhaps, the true horror for us save scummers.

Much like the original, most of the Dead Space remake is spent peeking around corners with your laser cutter firmly held high, ready to spark off at the slightest rustle. The paranoia this game induces is not for the faint of heart, but if you're a horror fan who didn't play Dead Space on its original release, know that you'll get an obscene amount of enjoyment out amplifying your own terror. The game will openly mock you in sections, leading you to rooms covered in vents where any one of them could be hosting a nasty little Necromorph, just waiting to pounce.

If you like horror, light puzzles and a spectacle of gore, give the Dead Space remake a go, just don't blame me if you can't face your bathroom vents ever again.

A Lurker necromorph kills an unfortunate scientist in the Dead Space remake.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/EA

James: The Dead Space remake doesn’t deserve banishment for the crime of Not Being Resident Evil 4. Not when it shows this much care for its craft: the visual upgrade alone is night and day, making the Ishimura even more hellish and turning the Necromorphs from generic grey meatmen to properly unsettling abominations. And besides, Resi 4 was always going to be good, but this was a series that infamously chased the action game big bucks all the way to its own demise. Dead Space, as a serious horror prospect, had something to prove, and prove it it did.


Rock Paper Shotgun is the home of PC gaming

Sign in and join us on our journey to discover strange and compelling PC games.

In this article
Follow a topic and we'll email you when we write an article about it.

Dead Space (remake)

PS5, Xbox Series X/S, PC

Related topics
About the Author
RPS avatar



The all-seeing eye of Rock, Paper, Shotgun, the voice of many-as-one.