All eyes are on the Dead Space remake after the lukewarm reception to the spiritual successor to the original series, The Callisto Protocol. In an interview with GamesRadar+ Senior Producer of the Dead Space remake, Phillipe Ducharme noted that immersion was at the forefront of both the remake and the original title.
Even when we started this project, I did several walkthroughs of the original game to make sure that I had it really mapped out in my mind – and immersion was one of the strongest selling points… For us, anything that we could do to try to enhance that immersion was an automatic yes.Senior Producer on Dead Space remake – Phillipe Ducharme
Ducharme said that the core of the game’s philosophy was to keep the player hooked.
If we’re able to get the player with the pad in their hands at the start and play throughout the entire game without putting their pad down, like to have them play for 12, 14, 15 hours straight, because they’re so immersed, and they just don’t even want to go to the bathroom… Well, it’s not healthy… Otherwise, like, that’s because they jumped in and they don’t want to leave, they don’t want to put it down – then job done, we’ve achieved that like we were able to deliver that immersion.Senior Producer on Dead Space remake – Phillipe Ducharme
Ducharme noted that he wanted the changes in the remake to be necessary and not there for the sake of change. He said:
The initial part of the game, like, if you play them side by side, they’re extremely similar. But then as you go through some of the chapters, there’s some objectives that were not as popular. We wanted to make sure that if we were making a change, it was actually to reflect on one of our key pillars… not just make changes because we thought we knew better than the original team, because they did an amazing job.Senior Producer on Dead Space remake – Phillipe Ducharme
This sense of immersion and fear seems to be something shared by the entire studio at EA Motive as in PLAY magazine’s issue #22 Technical Director, David Robillard said “when I’m playing it at night, I can’t play it with headphones. It’s just too fucking scary.” Robillard continued with this sentiment when speaking to GamesRadar+ when saying, “we needed to find a way to fill those gaps, so that the player doesn’t feel like ‘Oh, I’ve been here, it’s fine, I’m safe’. No, you’re never safe. Like, you will get jumped. Somebody wants your lunch money, and they’re not friendly.”