Cubed3 Nintendo gaming, Wii and DS

Dead Space: Extraction (Wii) Review

Review for Dead Space: Extraction on Wii - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Games on the Wii aren't too often like this. Cinematic, gory, mature...good. Not only does Dead Space: Extraction look to break the mould of so many identikit Wii games, it does so with such great style and verve that at times it will blow you away. A good word to describe the whole experience of playing DS:E is 'polished' - the whole thing is just endlessly cinematic and endlessly well thought out.

For those of you not initiated with the whole Dead Space universe, here's a quick rundown: Extraction is a prequel to the PS3/360/PC game and takes place at about the same time as the animated movie Downfall, immediately before they story of the original game. I'm not going to give away any of the plot as that will ruin half the fun of the game, but rest assured this is B-movie gore and guts at its very best.

What's really nice about this game is that it feels genuinely close to to what the Xbox 360 and PS3 can offer in terms of graphics and presentation; it feels like a really meaty game, which is a rare feeling on the Wii. The voice acting, scripting, motion capture and whole presentation of the title is really advanced, the story sucks you in and the characters, whilst somewhat clichéd at times, are all pretty entertaining. Perhaps the best way to describe this game as one giant interactive cutscene in which you watch the events play out, shoot some stuff, then move on to watch the next event. Yes, it is hugely polished, but at times it is hugely boring.

Screenshot for Dead Space: Extraction on Wii - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Whilst most light-gun games offer you the thrill of ploughing through countless enemies, Dead Space takes a different approach. You walk around very slowly, occasionally have to shoot something or solve a puzzle and then all of a sudden you have a massive hoard of beasties (better known as Necromorphs) to kill. These periods of frantic shooting are few and far between however, with the general pacing of the game being very slow.

The whole game is seemingly more about relationships and talking than fighting. As a bit of a book-worm it was certainly interesting to see character development take centre-stage in a big budget EA kill-a-thon. It works pretty well, with brilliant motion capture on the character models creating a believable and highly engaging world into which a number of different characters play out their lives. Perhaps the game is trying to evoke something more realistic (as realistic as killing aliens with flame-throwers can be), where conversations and slower moments are only occasionally punctured by moments of gun-slinging and mass slaughter. In line with this, the camera seems to be obsessed with spinning about and shaking all over the place, which is nice and headache-inducing.

Screenshot for Dead Space: Extraction on Wii - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

What impressed me most about DS:E is how it makes use of the Wii and tries to do something different. All secondary fire options are activated by tilting the Wii remote on its side. Enemies can be slowed down by shooting off their limbs so they're just twitching messes on the floor, and picking up items is achieved by pointing at them and pressing 'A'. And there are a lot of items to pick up.

I'm not often scared by games, and this one is no different. Perhaps the on-rails aspect makes it all a bit too predictable, but there are only so many times you can be surprised by something you presumed to be dead coming back to life, or something apparently being on your left and then appearing on your right with a loud piece of music accompanying it to remind you to jump. It's all just a bit clunky and obvious. That's not to say the game doesn't try different things; the slow descent into insanity of the characters and the general sense of terror and tension is really well realised, it just never really makes you jump, even with the lights off.

Screenshot for Dead Space: Extraction on Wii - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Perhaps the most enjoyable feature in the game is the drop-in/drop-out co-operative play, something that is pretty much standard in on-rails shooters. Blasting through the game with a friend certainly helps to up the fun levels, especially when you have to sit through another tediously paced 'plot' segment. Alongside this you also have a very yummy array of weaponry at your disposal. By levelling-up weapons you become more proficient at using them. As I mentioned earlier, Necromorphs are best dealt with by decapitating them, which requires quite a bit of accuracy. In the rare moments when you are overwhelmed by enemies, being accurate can be a pain in the arse. This is where stasis comes in handy: pressing C will freeze an enemy allowing you to chop away at them at your leisure. Handy.

In terms of life-span, Extraction is a bit of a puzzle. The ten-chapter story mode lasts about five hours, outside of this is the kill-a-thon challenge mode and the chance to replay the story mode in a higher difficulty level...which makes it bloody hard. There are also some rather swanky comics to look through and of course you can play through the whole game by yourself or with a friend if you can hack watching the story all over again.

Screenshot for Dead Space: Extraction on Wii- on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Gameplay

The on-the-rails decision was a big risk for the series, but it works excellently. Extraction makes fantastic use of the Wii hardware to deliver a compelling and really well thought-out gaming experience. The guns are great, the killing is super satisfying and the puzzles and other little treats are welcome innovations.

Graphics

This has to be the best looking third party on the Wii. Excellent motion capture makes for some great character animation and all the lighting effects are spot on. The whole presentation of the game is just top-notch.

Sound

The voice acting is pretty damned good, with cringeworthy moments very hard to come by. The music adds to the general mood and feel of the title excellently well and ties the whole package together.

Value

Short, very short, and with little replay value. Challenge mode adds something to the mix, but not much.

Cubed3 Rating

8/10
Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

About this score
Rated 8 out of 10

Whilst the plot can at times be ludicrously tedious, I just can't be harsh on a game that is this well polished and this well put together. Everything is true AAA quality...whatever that means these days. A real little gem of a game that takes a unique crack at the on-the-rails genre and also delivers a big-budget gaming experience on the Wii. Innovative from start to finish and at times massively enjoyable, this is one of the most intriguing games available on Wii.

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04.10.2009

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Developer

Eurocom

Publisher

EA

Genre

Horror

Players

2

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  10/10 (2 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Reader comments - add yours today Comments on this Review

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Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Thoroughly enjoying this at the moment. Just worked my way through to the third chapter now and think it's a great cross between Metroid Prime and Resident Evil. Sadly it got launched in the UK a week earlier than expected, so charted quite low, thus leading people to presume it's 'bombed'. Hopefully it'll shoot up now it's hit its original street date of 2nd October, though!

...it just never really makes you jump, even with the lights off.

To be honest, I found that to be true with Dead Space on the 360 as well. I just don't think I'm as susceptible to cheaps scares as I was about ten years ago. Saying that, Juon: The Grudge for Wii has moments that scare the crap out of me!

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

Not got it yet but i definatly will, just playing though what i already got, also i enjoy short games sometimes so i'm sure i'm going to love it :3

Not sold im afraid. THe review seems to describe a movie more then a game. Slow paced with little CONTROLLABLE action just walking and talking. That might be bearable but then you describe the story as tediously cliched. So I can imagine the game playing out as annoying cut scenes you cant escape from.

And when your paying 29.99 for a game I generally dont enjoy really short games. Its just not economically viable.

Senior ModeratorCubed3 Member

I was going to buy this game last weekend but I couldn\'t find it for cheaper than £39.99 on the high street, So I\'m going to oreder it off play.com either tomorrow or today since my NUS card came through and I can get some discount.

Since i\'m at Uni now, it\'s usefull to have a short game that I can pick up and blast through in a few hours and just kind of drop in/out when I feel like.

That said, I did just complete metroid Prime and moving onto echoes now.

From what I have heard from various reviews it all scores above the 80%+ mark, so I can\'t really go wrong!(Though I was really waiting for my trusted forum to review it first!)

Sweet review there James!

( Edited 04.10.2009 12:58 by Echoes221 )

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

meeto_0 said:
...but then you describe the story as tediously cliched...

That's the only real point I disagree with in James' review. I've actually been drawn in by the story and really like the way the action continues during its development.

I have to say that although I do like Dead Space on 360, I'm actually a bigger fan of this version mainly because I thought the 3rd Person Xbox 360 game didn't work quite as well as the 1st Person Metroid games on Wii (Metroid Prime Trilogy is amazing!).

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

jesusraz said:
That\'s the only real point I disagree with in James\' review. I\'ve actually been drawn in by the story and really like the way the action continues during its development.

I agree to an extent, but I would say it has some significant problems. When nothing too much happens, it falls into the problem of following everything that goes on in the five hours of the character\'s lives and doesn\'t deal too well with the \'boring\' bits. All just a bit clumsy in terms of pacing.

( Edited 04.10.2009 20:01 by Mr. T )

Trying to think of a witty signature after 'Hacker-gate'...

Sounds like a renter, to me.
Though I loved Dead Space on the 360. Scariest game I ever played.

NNID: crackedthesky
My blog, mostly about writing: http://davidjlovato.wordpress.com
Senior ModeratorStaff Member

The game dropped in the UK chart this week..uh-oh Smilie

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter
Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Excellent review Adam James! I\'m watching a friend play the original Dead Space right now, and we\'ll likely get this when I\'m home on break. Could use something like this to pass the Fall/Winter time at home.


jesusraz said:
The game dropped in the UK chart this week..uh-oh Smilie

Such a shame. I used to blame developers for not making good games for the Wii. I think by now though its obvious that its the audience\'s fault. If good games don\'t get bought, good games won\'t get made.



( Edited 06.10.2009 17:09 by Jacob4000 )

C3 Moderator
Senior ModeratorCubed3 Member

Well, I\'m eagerly awaiting my copy to come through from play and I can\'t wait. Next with be a grfx card so I can play the original (though it makes sense to play this one first)
I don\'t have too many shooters on the wii so it will make a break from the formula, and really hope that more people purchase it.

I think the boxart isn\'t striking enough for dead space either....
This:

Image for

Compared with the brutality of this:

Image for

The originals art is much more catching upon glancing. The other one does kind of blend in with the various game covers in the stores (though the luminous blue does help it stand out) I still love the artowork though, plenty of action.

( Edited 06.10.2009 00:45 by Echoes221 )

Jacob4000 said:
Excellent review Adam!

Ahem... Smilie

Trying to think of a witty signature after 'Hacker-gate'...

If its already fallen down the charts it could be a number of reasons: If I was to guess I would say it was a combination of these factors

The type of gamers who played DS on 360 might not own a wii, so its not a sequel with an eager fan base.

The type of gamers who play this may be a smaller number on the wii.

Those who liked the original may hate the new direction.

I hate the new direction and cant work out why on rails is better for the wii version. THe wii remote doesnt have a line of sight so for me its not like my experience of on rail shooters ala HOTD Dreamcast or Arcade games. Its actually a point and click game.

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Mr. T said:
Jacob4000 said:
Excellent review Adam!

Ahem... Smilie

I was just testing you to make sure you read my comments. Smilie


Sorry bout that. Smilie

C3 Moderator

Echoes221 said:
Well, I'm eagerly awaiting my copy to come through from play and I can't wait. Next with be a grfx card so I can play the original (though it makes sense to play this one first)
I don't have too many shooters on the wii so it will make a break from the formula, and really hope that more people purchase it.

I think the boxart isn't striking enough for dead space either....
This:

Image for


Compared with the brutality of this:

Image for


The originals art is much more catching upon glancing. The other one does kind of blend in with the various game covers in the stores (though the luminous blue does help it stand out) I still love the artowork though, plenty of action.


Agreed though the Dead Rising Bottom is much more "Exciting" To 18+
The top looks like a Cartoon network shit


John:
I..I can't watch porn. My Mommy finds out
:}

actually a game that actually has at least someone getting hurt instead of a plumber jumping on wierd monster things and fish turtle things.

I also do crack and heroin
Senior ModeratorCubed3 Member

epicz231 said:
actually a game that actually has at least someone getting hurt instead of a plumber jumping on wierd monster things and fish turtle things.

lol wut?

Agreed though the Dead Rising Bottom is much more "Exciting" To 18+
The top looks like a Cartoon network shit

Agreed. Don't let the artwork put you off though. You should buy this game, it's brilliant. And to be honest, I don't really think it's 18 material game. Other than the fact it's meant to be scary (It isn't really, just a bit trippy) and there are quite a few f* bombs in there.

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