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October 12, 2011

Areas of concern: Dead Space 2






Dead Space 2 is a 2011 Survival Horror game and sequel to the acclaimed original Dead Space. 



Areas of Concern:

Violence:

Mild Moderate Heavy Very Heavy Extreme Ban-worthy

Several scenes of brutal and graphic violence occur:

General Gameplay: 


--The enemies in this game are mutated human beings with deformed limbs, abnormal growths, skinless faces with missing jaws, and lots of torn skin. You have to shoot off the limbs of enemies to progress; a lot of blood stains the environment and sprays out, their limbs fall off and bloody stumps are seen.  

--You walk through environments with lots of blood, fleshy growths in the environment caused by deformed limbs, and decomposing bodies with enemies feasting on them and mutating them with talons growing out of their backs with blood spraying. 

--One of the enemies is a man tied to a wall by mutated intestines, who launches explosive growths whilst screaming horribly. 

Storyline Violence: 

--The game opens up with a monster stabbing a guy through the head, who mutates graphically onscreen. His skin falls off and talons grow out of his back, with a lot of blood in the process.


--In one scene near the beginning, a man commits suicide by slitting his own throat, with blood spraying out.


--In one scene a man stabs a woman in the eye with a needle. The scene cuts away just before it happens, but it is still gruesome. A man gets stabbed in the side of the head, with blood leaking out. 

--One scene takes place in a space city, which the infection just spread to. People getting dragged off by enemy creatures can be seen and screams can be heard throughout the city. A baby is also heard crying behind a door you can't go into.


--In one scene, a man tied to an operating table yells for help when a necromorph appears, who then attacks him and decapitates him by stabbing him with his talon, blood spraying out.


--Some of the enemy creatures appear to be mutated children and babies. Though they don't fully look human anymore, this is still disturbing. One of the aforementioned are babies that can explode. 

In one scene (viewed through a window) a woman cuddles one of these babies, giggling, which then explodes, splattering the entire window with blood.

--There are some scenes of people getting attacked, sliced apart with blood spraying and screams of pain being heard and limbs falling off, a man is shown with half of his face burnt with his teeth and eyeball visible, and a few other milder acts of violence.

Player Deaths:

--Isaac's (The player character.) death scenes are arguably the most gruesome moments in the game.

They involve Isaac getting arms and legs torn, cut or blown off, being decapitated, getting stabbed in the eye and all round just not having a nice day during the deaths. And there's screams of pain. A lot. 

--In one scene, Isaac operates a machine injecting a needle in his eye, which is gruesome in itself, but the happens when the player fails to lower the needle slow enough, the needle crashes into Isaac's eye (Who is screaming.) with a lot of blood spraying out in close-up.


This is what the Necromorphs look like.

Anybody who is sensitive to violence should stay far away from this game. Even if you aren't, the violence is pushed so far, only for shock value, that the game drifts into being tasteless. Besides, there are other issues as well:


Sex/Nudity:

Mild Moderate Heavy Very Heavy Extreme Ban-worthy

--Some of the necromorphs appear to be naked, though due to their mutation nothing is shown besides their bare buttocks. 

Aside from that, nothing.


Language:

Mild Moderate Heavy Very Heavy Extreme Ban-worthy

Words like F**K and S**T are used a frequently, by the player character as well.  Words like B**CH and CR*P can be heard as well. 

Jesus' name used in vain though, which is unnecessary no matter how you look at it.


The Unitology symbol.



Spritual Content:

Mild Moderate Heavy Very Heavy Extreme Ban-worthy

--The plot involves a cult known as "Unitologists" who want the player to help them build a Marker, (The cause of the infestation) because they believe it will reunify them after death in Heaven. 

Isaac also goes to their temple or church or whatever they call it. Throughout the church are candles and audio transmission praising their leader. ("Praise be to Altman") For more on the unitologists, click here: 

http://deadspace.wikia.com/wiki/Unitology

It should be noted that none of the Unitologists rituals or prayers are seen through the game and nothing spiritual takes place. The game is Sci-Fi so whatever happens is in those boundaries. 

However, the candles and mantras are very dodgy already, God says that: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." which contributes to the final BANNED rating. As said in the link above, the Unitologists aim is to "Converge" which is similar to the New Age movement.


A Unitology promo.
Scary Stuff:

Mild Moderate Heavy Very Heavy Extreme Ban-worthy


The whole game is meant to scare you so much, that you are driven to the point of running to your garage and clawing Mr. Snuggles out of a box so that he can protect you at night from the evil monsters.

Okay, maybe not that much, but the game features a lot of scares.

--Many dark environments are shown, hallucinations occur with monsters suddenly jumping out, a very depressing atmosphere, and tense boss fights makes this one of the scariest games you'll (hopefully not) ever play. 
 

Drugs/Alcohol/Smoking: None.





Thoughts & Impressions:


Story: The game takes place a while after the first game. 

Isaac wakes up in a mental institution and starts having hallucinations of his dead girlfriend from the first game, Nicole. Afterwards he is rescued only to discover that there is another outbreak of Necromorphs, mutated dead human beings which can only be stopped by blowing their limbs off, caused by a new Marker. 

(Stated in the first game to be made by an alien race.) What follows is a ton of bad stuff happening and one long day for Isaac. 

There are two separate storylines going on in the game. 

One is the main one, the Necromorph outbreak. And the other is Isaac's descent into insanity. The storyline of the outbreak is okay. But after a while you get pretty sick and tired of people bossing Isaac around telling him what to do and stabbing him in the back. 

However, Isaac's story of battling his inner demons is interesting and in the end the whole outbreak storyline makes way to give his story center stage. However, the games mind numbing gore, as well as the Unitologist cult detract from the story, specifically some violence just put in because they could.


Isaac fighting Stalkers, plus in the background, a Slasher.


Audiovisual

Graphics: The visuals are very dark and creepy. The enviroment detail, lighting and gunfire are all presented in stunning detail. Although sick, The blood and gore effects are done really well, with good dismemberment detection as well dynamic blood spatter. 

Audio: Filled with creepy music and sound effects, like the roars of Necromorphs and the sounds of empty hallways, great sound effects work are everywhere. Voice acting is good too, making everything more believable. All of this amounts to creepy and dark atmosphere, which makes even more nightmare inducing.

Verdict:

Dead Space 2 is rated BANNED for Extremely Gory Violence, a Very Scary Atmosphere, and Strong Spiritual References which adds to the final rating.

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