Wow, what a ride. After 1 and 2 there’s already a 3. Blink of an eye. EA firmly stayed the course of trying to make the original formula worse with every iteration. This is where it becomes obvious how good DS is – despite EA’s best efforts to break it, it’s still fun!
Dead Space (1) was, compared to the typical shooter, a breath of fresh air (although, all things considered, 2 totally was the best/most fun part of the 3 :P). The sequels, while still good, didn’t just NOT improve on these cool ideas, they also scaled them down. I didn’t exactly verify this, but I read somewhere (forgot) that it was Dead Space 1 that sold the most copies. If that’s true, I can’t help but to think something along the lines of: serves you right. But apparently that’s all wrong. Figures.
Like EA put micro-transactions in ME3, they shoved them into DS3 as well. To my surprise it didn’t disturb me to the extent I expected, because it can easily be ignored entirely. Nothing what those “offer” is relevant. I’m “at best” worried that it might pave the way for even uglier stuff if too many people actually PAY extra (for nothing). And yes, I can blame EA for trying. :P
For some time now there’s a DLC, “Awakened” and the thing is – this DLC takes place immediately after the main game ends. It feels essential and it’s pretty much the actual ending of the game… I don’t know. It’s almost (or exactly) as if they cut off the ending and sold it separately. It’s more than just a scene that could have taken place after the ending credits rolled. It could maybe be declared as an epilogue, but so far I’ve never seen a game that excluded something of this magnitude from the main product and sold it separately. It makes you forget all about micro-payments in an instant.
Another letdown are the co-op areas. These zones aren’t even accessible to solo players. So the game is shorter for everyone who plays alone AND some story pieces stay unknown. I don’t even know what to say, given that this always was a singleplayer, story-driven game. I bought DS2 when it came out and to this day I haven’t even started the MP part ONCE.
DS3 newly features, every now and then, optional side missions, sounds like a good idea, but they remind me of Dragon Age II (another EA game – coincidence? :P), because they reuse the same maps/environments pretty much every time. Once you know the layout of the first one, it’s running straight to the target and at the end there’s always the same chest in the same room with the same attack from the same enemies (thus negating any surprise/shock effects, because you always know who will attack when beforehand). Rushed? Lame? Before simply duplicating levels, they should have cut those altogether. Not worth it.
Lots of ugly corporate decisions in this one… More than any EA title had before.
What I don’t share at all, however, is the notion that people who liked the first 2 games won’t enjoy this one anymore. It might not have evolved in the direction lots of people hoped it would, but DS3 is nonetheless one hell of a ride. Truly is.
One of the changes is, that the weapons now can be modified (it takes some getting used to) by adding a second weapon into the same frame. Which obviously can only result in everyone combining a plasma cutter with a plasma cutter. :D
So despite silly (and naturally false) rumors of this being the last DS installation, DS4 is coming. What unnecessary crap they’ll tack unto 4 will probably be more shocking than the story. :P If they’ll even continue/finish the known arc without rebooting or something. :|