On a mining colony on the planet Aegis VII, a huge red statue is discovered on top of a pedestal. Removing the statue causes the miners to hallucinate, including Sam Caldwell, who kills several of his co-workers before getting shot by security.
A few days later, Detective Nathan McNeill has called in Caldwell's girlfriend, Lexine Murdoch, for questioning. Coincidentally, McNeill runs into his old war buddy Gabe Weller. Weller is on Aegis VII because the ship he works on, the USG Ishimura, is transporting the statue, dubbed the Red Marker. Meanwhile, Weller has been sent to investigate the bodies of the people Caldwell killed.
Their reunion is cut short when all the corpses turn into monstrous Necromorphs, and attack the colony. McNeill and Weller, along with Lexine and another person, Warren Eckhardt, try to escape to the Ishimura, only to find the Necromorphs are there too.
Extraction carries several things over from Dead Space; Necromorphs have to get their limbs shot off to be killed; McNeill and Weller can hold up to four weapons at a time, which players can cycle through on the fly; ammo is limited and has to be conserved; and weapons can be upgraded with power nodes found in the levels.
The main game is a story mode broken up into levels. Completing levels unlocks a score attack mode. Doing well enough on the score attack mode unlock issues from the Dead Space comic.
An HD version is available for the PS3, compatible with the Move controller. This version omits the unlockable motion comics, although all six issues can be downloaded on the PlayStation Network. Some editions of Dead Space 2 include Extraction HD on the disc.
Dead Space: Extraction provides examples of:
- And Now for Someone Completely Different: The point-of-view character shifts a lot. At the beginning of each chapter, we get a character looking at themselves in a mirror (or something else) as a nod to the player to remind them who they're currently playing as. The most prominent main character is McNiell, a cop on Aegis VII, but we also take turns as Sam, Lexine's boyfriend who goes nuts in the first chapter, Weller, and for one level, Dr. Karen Howell.
- Ankle Drag: Dr. Howell is dragged away by a tentacle. She doesn't make it because Eckhardt abandons her when she calls him out for seeding Unitologists in the Ishimura's ranks.
- Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: Falls under point #4 of the trope considering how the Necromorphs are made. McNeill has to cut off his arm after being impaled in the hand during a boss fight while in vacuum, but then fights the Necromorphs with a Contact Beam in his remaining arm while making a run for the shuttle. While Lexine takes care of Weller, Weller is sitting in a room where the biomass that has been spreading in the ship has begun to reach the location where the escape shuttle is housed.
- Canon Immigrant:
- Not a character, but the pistol from Downfall.
- The spider-like Necromorph from the novel Martyr makes an appearance.
- Charged Attack:
- The secondary fire for the Rivet Gun superheats the rivet. It's usually just for puzzles (but works a treat on crazies).
- The Contact Beam needs to be charged to fire. Just like in the main game.
- The pulse rifle's secondary needs to be charged for a few seconds.
- Continuity Nod:
- Overflowing with them, to the point of Continuity Porn. You're essentially going through Dead Space in reverse. It also manages to neatly explain a lot of the things you saw in Dead Space. For example, as Isaac Clarke, you had to blow up a welded-shut door to progress in the medical deck, and shortly beyond you saw a (dormant) tentacle-hole. In Extraction, you get to see the tentacle pounding on the wall creating that hole, and you help them weld the door shut to keep it away. Isaac also had to repair the disabled asteroid defense guns because you disable them in Extraction to keep your shuttle from being shot down automatically. That battery in the medical bay that Isaac had to put back in while the hunter was chasing him? You took it out to lock in the abominations spawned from the injured workers in the hallway.
- There's several references to Ishimura Security Chief Vincent from Dead Space: Downfall, although she never actually appears.
- Covers Always Lie: Extraction does not star a brown haired woman fighting off the Necromorphs. The closest is Lexine, and she's a terrible shot.
- Downer Ending: As per the usual Dead Space formula. After escaping the colony and later the ship, McNeill, Weller, and Lexine manage to get away on one of the working shuttles. As they leave, they pass the shuttle carrying the cast from the first game. Lexine tries to warn them but their shuttle's communicator is busted. Then McNeill succumbs to blood loss from cutting off his hand earlier and transforms into a Necromorph, forcing Lexine to kill him. And just to make matters worse, she and Weller are headed to the Sprawl, where this will happen all over again in the sequel.
- Doomed by Canon: Played straight and subverted. The developing interviews and original Dead Space makes it seems like Isaac is the only survivor. Played straight when almost all of the cast dies. Subverted when it's revealed that two of the main characters survived and are on the Sprawl in the Dead Space 2 DLC.
- Doomed Protagonist: Just about everyone you play as.
- Doomed Hometown: Applies to Nathan and Lexine, both being residents of the Colony down on Aegis VII until they’re forced to flee when the Marker starts doing its thing.
- Down the Drain: Yes, there is a sewer level on the Ishimura. It is a big ship, after all, and all that waste must go somewhere. Luckily, it's the effluent from the hydroponics bay and isn't human waste.
- First-Person Shooter: Of the rail shooter variety.
- Fire-Breathing Weapon: The flamethrower keeps Necromorphs at arms length when fired. It also lights their whole body, so you can toast 'em and ignore them until they try to get up in your grill again.
- Foreshadowing: Eckhardt claims to be the director of Colonial Mining Operations, but doesn't know what a "megavent" is.note
- Good Cop/Bad Cop: While they don't practice it, McNiell is noticeably the calmer one while Weller is the angrier (but no less competent) of the two.
- Guns Are Worthless: The Pulse Rifle once again sucks, but unlike in Dead Space, it cannot redeem itself because Extraction's weapon upgrades only apply to magazine size. The exception is the game's two bosses, both of which adhere to "shoot the arm coming at you enough times and it will stop coming at you" logic, so the Pulse Rifle is the ideal weapon for fighting them. However, the worst gun in Extraction by far is the P-Sec Pistol, though this makes sense since it's just an ordinary pistol.
- Hate Plague: The initial effect of the Marker's presence. Then the dead start to rise.
- He Knows Too Much: Weller found out that Eckhardt is a Unitologist on a mission to bring Lexine back to Earth, as she is apparently the only one who can resist the marker. He was also responsible for the death of Dr. Howell, who suspected that Eckhardt was responsible for much of the mess. As a result, Eckhardt shoots Weller before he tell anyone. Just as the former starts giving you a speech on why he shot you, he turns his back long enough to receive a Karmic Death at the "hands" of a Necromorph. The development team spells it out in the chapter titles: WARREN LIES.
- Ignore the Fanservice: Apparently, Lexine walking across the medical bay's exam room stark nude didn't warrant McNeil looking at her for more than one second, though ESRB standards and its status as a Wii game may be the reason. Another reason would be he was supposed to interrogate her and he may be sticking to cop instincts during the sequence.
- Instantly Proven Wrong: When the Marker starts going to town on the people of Aegis VII, one of those visibly affected is Karklins, Weller's newest squad member, which leads McNeill to suggest Weller take his gun. Weller angrily retorts that there's no way he could be subdued by a rookie moments before Karklins delivers a mid-sentence sucker punch to his boss as he finally loses it, leading to McNeill having to put him down.
- Karmic Death: Eckhardt is literally stabbed in the back by a Necromorph after he figuratively stabs you in the back. Weller lampshades by saying that no one should die that way. The "Pull the Knife Out" trophy further lampshades this.
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: Being a prequel, Extraction spoils two of Dead Space 1's biggest twists: namely that Nicole committed suicide before Isaac Clarke reached the Ishimura and existence of the Hive Mind.
- Life-or-Limb Decision: McNeill has to cut off his arm after it is pinned to the wall by a boss Necromorph.
- Lightning Gun: The Arc Welder is an electric version of the Flamethrower, including the nigh-useless "blob of stuff" secondary attack.. They at least had the decency to give it two thunderbolts to make a circuit.
- Lower-Deck Episode: One starring Dr. Howell, a botanist, who worked in hydroponics. She kills a brute protecting Lexine, but she dies when she calls Eckhardt out for seeding Unitologists into every corner of the ship. Immediately afterwards, she is attacked by a tentacle and left to die by Eckhardt while he yells about his "god" having different plans. This leaves the player in serious doubt of his character.
- Mind Screw: The end of the first level when you find out you weren't shooting zombies at all but actual crewmates while you were under the Marker's influence. The mind screw is ramped up in general from the vanilla Dead Space. You can never fully trust what you see with your eyes to be real at any given time.
- P.O.V. Sequel: Prequel in the case as this game takes place before the events of the original Dead Space.
- Perfect Reload Command: Guns can be reloaded faster based on where the line is on the reticle during the reloading animation.
- Quarantine with Extreme Prejudice: In response to the Necromorph outbreak on the colony, the Ishimura institutes a no fly zone and attempts to shoot down any craft approaching the ship. It doesn't work, as both the heroes' shuttle and Colin Barrow's get through and crash on the Ishimura, spreading the infection to the ship.
- Sanity Slippage: Everyone. Everyone, that is, except Lexine and those in close proximity to Lexine, which is a plot point.
- Secondary Fire: All weapons have an alt-fire mode, ranging from flipping the barrel from one position to another, to launching different flavors of grenade, to firing three shots from each barrel to make it into a shotgun (see below).
- Shotguns Are Just Better: The pulse rifle's alt fire is a shotgun that can rip all the limbs off a Slasher in one shot.
- Shout-Out: In the first level, an engineer named Sterling radios his boss Cooper.
- Sidetrack Bonus: There are a few times where you will be given a choice between two paths. Often times, one path leads you to where you need to go and the other leads you to a dead end with a lot of enemies and supplies hanging about. Going the latter way will force you to go back the other way when you're done while going the other way means you won't find the stash.
- Space Is Noisy: Once again, averted; there's even a boss fight in near-total silence. The creature only makes noise when it slams against the ship's hull.
- Surprisingly Sudden Death: So much so that it's predictable.
- Technically Living Zombie: The insane colonists that McNeil and Weller first face off against in the story are feral, aggressive, attack anyone around them with their bare hands and teeth, and in one case are even seen indulging in cannibalism. However, despite their animalistically violent behaviour and being surprisingly tough to kill, they’re merely crazed living humans who’ve completely fallen under the spell of the Marker, with their enhanced durability most likely being the result of an intense adrenaline rush.
- Too Dumb to Live:
- Doctor Karen Howell deciding to call out Eckhardt for his villainy while alone with him at the same time frantically trying to seal away the Necromorphs in the tunnels, providing both the means and the motive to silence her.
- Weller makes a similar mistake. Having come to his own conclusions about Eckhardt's misdeeds, he then turns his back to him and is promptly shot.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: Between McNiell and Lexine, even though they've met in the middle of a Zombie Apocalypse, had only known each other for a couple of hours, her boyfriend had just died, and he's going crazy. It doesn't help that he turns into a Necromorph at the end.