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dbarry_22's Video Game Reviews (221)

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New Super Mario Bros. 2 4.5/5
Blaster Master: Enemy B... 4/5
The Last of Us 4.5/5
New Super Mario Bros. U 3.5/5
Resident Evil: Revelati... 4/5
Scribblenauts Unlimited 2.5/5
Donkey Kong 4/5
Castlevania: Bloodlines 3/5
Waialae Country Club 2/5
Dead Space 2 3.5/5
Nintendo Land 3.5/5
Super Mario World 2: Yo... 3.5/5
Portal 2 5/5
Portal 2 5/5
The Last Story 4.5/5
Tecmo Bowl 3.5/5
Kid Icarus 4/5
3D Classics: Kid Icarus 3.5/5
Dead Space: Extraction 4/5
Back to the Future: The... 3.5/5
Back to the Future: The... 3.5/5
Back to the Future: The... 3.5/5
Sin & Punishment: Star ... 3.5/5
Chip 'n' Dale: Rescue R... 3.5/5
Dungeon Defenders 4.5/5

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Dead Space 2   PlayStation 3 

An Adequate Sequel    3.5/5 stars

Dead Space 2 provides enough additions from the original to make it feel new, but it just doesn't quite live up to the original.

The story of Isaac continues, this time taking place years after the events of the original game on the Ishimura. He is being kept in what could be described as a psychiatric ward on a space station called The Sprawl when a new necromorph outbreak occurs. And, before you know it, you're attempting escape and trying to take down a marker...again.

This sequel tries to keep things fresh. While all the guns from the original appear here as well, there are new guns to try as well. There's a javelin gun, a proximity mine gun, and the equivalent of a sniper rifle. While they are fun to try out, odds are you will spend most of your time going back to the tried and true weapons like the plasma cutter, line gun, and pulse rifle. You can shoot out windows which will cause rooms to decompress, sucking out your enemies and you as well unless you hit the emergency button above the window. The zero gravity environment has also been improved. You no longer just jump from one spot to another, you have small thrusters which you can control almost as if you were a ship flying through the air.

There are new enemies as well. All of the necromorphs from the original reappear, your lurkers, exploders, brutes, etc. The new enemies provide a bit of a different challenge. There are childlike necromorphs that move pretty well but go down pretty easy. There are miniature exploders called crawlers. There are pukers, who spit there own version of stasis at you. And, the most annoying, stalkers, raptor like enemies that hide behind crates and come sprinting out towards you at a moment's notice. I personally don't like these guys, they pretty much force you to use stasis on them and if you don't know where they are coming from, you will get hit constantly. Shockingly enough, these enemies ALWAYS appear in cargo rooms or some kind of equivalent.

I would say the graphics are definitely improved, but not overwhelmingly so. Isaac and any other humans you encounter have more detail and any time you look out into space it looks stunning. The Sprawl is an environment that has more variety which helps. It doesn't have the constant industrial feel that the Ishimura had.

To me, the story is lacking when compared to the first Dead Space. In the original, not only are you trying to escape but you are constantly learning about unitologists and the marker and the connections between them and the outbreak. And, you were trying to save the love of your life. The ship you were on was well designed, too. This time, you are still trying to escape and take down a marker, but the mystery and investigative feel to it is gone. You learn more about Isaac and the battle of his own psyche against the marker, but that isn't nearly as interesting since you have a pretty good idea what the outcome is going to be anyways. The Sprawl isn't well designed, you run around randomly from one part of the station to the other, listening to random people telling you where to go and what to fix. There isn't much exploring.

This game is also designed more to kill you. Enemies are strategically placed in the dark causing cheap deaths. Many of the new enemies are faster, even though the weapons you use are as slow as before to respond. To me this is cheap horror. They try to scare you by not having a clue what enemy is where and when they do appear, they're on you before you have a chance to respond. You end up memorizing where they are coming from after you die so you can kill everything, use the checkpoint system far too often in my opinion. The first game had this, too, but it was in short spurts. You'd be surprised by an enemy or two and you had a chance to get some shots off on them before they got to you. Not here, you get shot at and things explode from spots you can't see coming at times. Or, an enemy will come sprinting at your from behind and you get hit without even knowing it was there.

This is still an enjoyable game, but some of the changes did not make it better. The Sprawl and the story were not nearly as good as the original. And, there wasn't much closure at the end, making this feel like just another chapter in a long series.

If you're going to play this, make sure you've played the first game. It helps you understand what's going on and it's much better.




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