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YMMV / Dead Space 3

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  • 8.8: Dead Space got 7's and higher (up to 9.75/10 for Game Informer). One website ( gave it a 5/10.
  • Ass Pull:
    • Ellie turning out to be Not Quite Dead. It actually seemed as though the creators planned on having her die, but then they changed their minds later on and sloppily forced her back into the plot at the last minute.
    • In Awakened, Carver and Isaac's survival. Lampshaded by Carver, who is incredulous about how they were "saved by fucking aliens", but Isaac notes that he has decided on Giving Up on Logic a long time ago.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: For the game as a whole. Was Dead Space 3 an Actionized Sequel, or simply the result of Isaac having tangled with the Necromorphs twice before and survived both? The ending of Dead Space 2—where Isaac defeats them more or less on his own terms—reinforces the ideas that the Necromorphs haven't gotten any less frightening; Isaac just knows that he can get through this if he keeps calm and uses the resources available to him.
    • Is Norton just a jealous jerkass for Ellie or a Unwitting Pawn for the markers, driven insane into doing their bidding, just to get Isaac were the Brother Moon wants him? Is his continuous insistence on getting as far from the planet as possible, mere cowardice or his way of fighting back against the markers before their influence becomes too great for him to resist? Is his final act of trying to shoot Isaac just him being afraid of being found out or his last desperate attempt of stopping Isaac from finding a way to shutting off the machine in a final sliver of resistance against the markers and their wishes? Nobody knows and most likely, nobody ever will...
  • Awesome Music: The opening theme in the prologue, "200 Years Ago, On An Icy Planet..." is very foreboding and works well with the blizzard as a backdrop.
  • Badass Decay: Ellie goes through this, to some fans' displeasure, going from the one protecting someone who has no weapon to the one who has no weapon and needs protecting onscreen. Her status as an Ace Pilot also seems to have completely disappeared, aside from one cutscene in which she was the only one on a ship in a place with no danger nearby at all.
    • However, Norton might had a hand in this change, considering his personality and him wanting Ellie away from any possible danger at all times...
  • Broken Base:
    • There's been some controversy over EA deciding to market the game by sending early demo access to famous YouTubers (via TheGameStation and presumably other networks) like Game Grumps, PeanutButterGamer, The Completionist, Criken, and PewDiePie, etc. While some fans are thrilled these players are receiving some sponsor money, others are annoyed at them and EA for making them "sell out". It's mitigated somewhat with most of those YouTubers harshly critical of the game (either choosing to be honest about their contempt for the game, ex: ProJared, or choosing to be more subtle, ex: Game Grumps), and some made extremely short episodes about it as opposed to their normal content.
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    • The introduction of more typical third person shooter mechanics, such as Take Cover!, Unnecessary Combat Roll, Universal Ammunition and enemies with guns, caused a bit of a split. One side feels this makes the game more generic and takes it too far from its horror roots. Others never really considered the Dead Space franchise to be much of a "survival horror" game in the first place, so any added variety to the combat and general gameplay in what can also be considered an atmospheric, sci-fi Third-Person Shooter is a welcome change.
    • The end of Awakened. Some find it fitted with the Cosmic Horror-inspired atmosphere. Others found that after the bittersweet ending of the vanilla game, having the Moons reach Earth with the implication humanity's doomed despite everything Isaac and the other protagonists have done negated any sense of accomplishment from the entire series.
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome: Visceral have spoken out against one-weapon playthroughs, stating that the new weapon design system exists specifically to combat this. Ironically, one can build extremely overpowered weapons through crafting, making a one-weapon playthrough in this game far easier.
    • One of the pre-order/day one purchase DLCs is a weapon that's probably the best one in the whole game and is available from the start. No need for crafting, besides adding damage or clip modifiers.
  • Critical Research Failure: You can find bloodstains and scrawlings all over the scuttled SCAF fleet and Tau Volantis facility. But in reality, blood dries brown and would have been completely decayed away after so long.
  • Demonic Spiders:
    • Regenerators return. And this time around, you encounter more than one of them at a time. And if that's not bad enough, they're immune to fire (unlike the first game), so the only thing you can do is run away or slow them down. You eventually do get the chance to blast them all to smithereens with a large turret later on though.
    • The Twitchers are back too. This time around, they're more powerful and seem to have the same amount of health as an enhanced Slasher, and they tend to attack in packs of four or five. Even with the stasis, taking out an entire group of Twitchers can be difficult.
    • Stalkers have returned as well. They're more aggressive in this game, and they're smart enough to jump behind you and hide behind cover you just walked past. In other words, they can attack you from behind if you don't notice them. On the upside, a shotgun can take out a Stalker with just one blast.
    • The Alien Necromorphs encountered in the underground city. Unlike typical Necromorphs, you can't dismember them. All you can do is slow them down and randomly shoot at them until they die (or until you run out of ammo). The fact that certain areas have these enemies spawn over and over again just makes them all the more frustrating.
  • Developer's Saving Throw: The Awakened DLC. After much of the game's criticism came from the much downplayed horror themes, the great focus on third person shooter action, and the larger more open environments, the developers went more toward's the game's survivor horror roots with the DLC. Returning to the derelict space ship Terra Nova's much more claustrophobic environment, a renewed emphasis on survival horror, and a strong return of Dead Space 2's Marker induced hallucinations (for both Isaac AND Carver) did a much greater service to the game's predecessors than the main campaign.
    • Also the first necromorph you get to kill is the reanimated remains of Norton.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Player character Tim Caufman from the prologue is liked for being an Adorkable New Meat soldier who mostly never swears and even when scared, he still fights his way through.
    • Austin Buckell is one for being a Cool Old Guy and one of the few characters in the franchise to be given a relatively peaceful death.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: Initially brought up when Ellie and Isaac meet and agreed on by Isaac near the end of the game. Isaac initially refuses to continue fighting, an understandable point as his life was a living nightmare at several points, he's lost loved ones (Ellie included as she left him), and has tolerated being the victim of Chronic Backstabbing Disorder more than once. Ellie's response? He's a coward who can't or won't face his problems. Apparently, if you have post-traumatic stress disorder, you should just stop having it and man up.
    • Even though we have no evidence that Ellie knows about Lexine, if she is alive, the fact remains of the second part of the Aesop's acceptance in the spoiler listed here.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Two flavors — the core game and the Awakened DLC.
    • Firstly the core game which, all controversial business decisions aside, undoes the kinda happy ending of Dead Space 2, and brings back Isaac's resolved issues by copying and piling them onto new character Carver. Throw in a few What the Hell, Hero? instances (see Family-Unfriendly Aesop above) and an Excuse Plot considering Isaac barely has a reason to keep fighting, and you've got a game with controversial fan continuity.
    • Awakened has also been subject to this, as it provides an epilogue to the main plot. Undoing the incredibly Bittersweet Ending where Isaac and Carver seemingly die killing the final necromorph, toppling them forever with a Not Quite Dead reveal, you aren't going to win many points with fans. When you then provide a final Downer Ending where everything was probably for nothing, as a Brother Moon has found Earth and then have Word of God making it dubious if the series is done due to recent unpopularity, you're going to have numerous fans desperately trying to scrub it from canon.
  • Game-Breaker: Hammond's Heavy Chain-gun = Hammond's heavy frame + Telemetry Spike + Diffraction torus tip + Ammo box attachment. You'll be dropping ammo clips because they'll start clogging up your inventory due to the ammo-expentiture:kill-count ratio of this gun.
    • The Chain Lightning Gun (Heavy Frame + Tesla Core + Diffraction Torus) has mediocre clip size and range, but is very accurate and, with some nice chips installed, can one-shot most enemies in the game with plain old body shots, saving you the trouble of aiming for the limbs. Most importantly, it can and will do so without triggering Wasters' splitting or Pregnants' Swarm Zerg Rush. Add to that its eponymous ability to hit several targets per shot due to the chain lightning effect and you have a tool that's precise and useful for crowd control at the same time. Still not convinced? I apparently forgot to mention that electric weapons/effects almost always stun what they hit, including the super-fast Twitchers and all the other Demonic Spiders, which is pretty helpful of you're out of stasis for whatever reason.
    • For probably the most game-breaking gun there is, craft the Chain Lightning Gun from a Heavy S.C.A.F. Frame, combine it with the aforementioned Chain Gun and enhance it with Stasis Coating and eight Tier-3-chips for damage, clip size and reload speed. Mk V versions of tips and upgrades even give an additional boost to clip size. There's NOTHING AT ALL this combination can't counter with contemptuous ease, all the while being one of the most ammo-efficient guns in the game and therefore suited for the highest difficulties as well. At mid-range, the Lightning Gun lays waste to anything unlucky enough to be in Isaac's sights. Anything that reaches close quarters gets shredded by the Chain Gun, usually without a chance to fight back due to being stasised all the time. This combination makes short work of even the dreaded Stalkers, Twitchers and Regenerators. An Ammo Box upgrade instead of Stasis Coating gives those weapons enough clip capacity to massacre dozens of Necromorphs without the need for a single reload. The real kicker? You still have the second weapon slot available for... whatever. You won't need it anymore.
    • Many LO Ls were had with the oftentimes underestimated Rivet Gun (Compact Frame + Telemetry Spike). Combined with an Electrocution Module and properly upgraded with chips, it also can one-shot pretty much anything short of Alien Necromorphs and bosses on any difficulty, and it has a much better clip size and rate of fire than its big brother, the lovely Javelin Gun. Triggering the electrocution after hitting an enemy will kill it and everything in a several meters radius around the initial target. You don't even need to hit something at all - just shoot a spike into the ground, electrocute it and watch all nearby 'morphs drop like flies. Rinse and repeat until the onslaught eventually stops. Oh, and like the Chain Lightning Gun mentioned above, it kills Wasters and Pregnants without them pulling their nasty tricks in the process, and the electricity immediately stuns everything it comes into contact with.
  • Genius Bonus: Rosetta, the alien lifeform that allows Isaac to decipher the information about what happened on Tau Voltanis is likely named after the Rosetta Stone, an artifact that showed researchers how to understand Egyptian hieroglyphics.
  • Goddamn Feeders
  • Good Bad Bugs:
    • Necromorphs still have a problem with differentiating when a person is in a room or not sometimes, outright abruptly ignoring them... even if they are a foot away from its face! Which allows the player to shoot off limbs with their back turned.
    • Necromorphs don't ragdoll properly when killed by gradual damage such as fire or acid, meaning they'll amusingly flop into the air like a fish when they die.
  • Most Annoying Sound: The Exploder's yelling, especially in the segment where you have to fix the shuttle. There are dozens of Exploders, often crawling through the ducts so you can't shoot them until they come out, but they still continue to yell loudly.
  • Narm: Isaac shouting after Ellie after they crash on the planet. Downright hilarious in co-op.
    • The Fodders are quite terrifying, with their almost-human appearance, growling and muttering, and their intelligence... until you cut them in half and tentacles sprout from their legs. And they walk towards you backwards. Try to see that without thinking "the pants were dead".
    • The scene after Isaac and company reassemble Rosetta and they finally learn the true meaning of 'Make Us Whole' and Convergence, in which Isaac is just sitting on the floor, monologuing to explain everything. It's some of the most awkward storytelling possible. Then Isaac stands up to see Danik and his goons, along with Carver and Ellie, have just been standing there the whole time listening without a word. It's just a weird scene all around.
    • The same scene above isn't helped by the fact that as you piece Rosetta together, no one seems to even realize it's an ancient alien until its finished. Carver even seems to hold an Idiot Ball briefly by being in such disbelief that he has no idea what this means until it gets explained more thoroughly. This isn't helped by the fact that the cast passed by massive bones and carcasses of numerous past alien beings, and even fight a Necromorph-itized body of one, and yet no one connects the dots.
    • In a single player playthrough, any of the scenes where Isaac and Carver bond as there is absolutely no build up to them. Also how Carver basically just pops in from nowhere for these scenes.
  • Porting Disaster: Subverted. While Visceral Games made statements that the PC version the would imply it to be lackluster, the PC version runs very smooth and comes with a nice amount of options.
    • Unfortunately when playing in full screen mode if an alert interrupts the game, there is neither way to get back control in the game nor a way to quit it without logging off or restarting the computer.
  • Player Punch: In Chapter 15, after Carver and Isaac make it out of the laboratory as it's filling with deadly gas, Ellie realizes she can't make it and tells Isaac to leave her behind. The game then forces the player to Press X to Not Die, which causes Isaac to seal Ellie inside just as she tells him "I love you."
  • Romantic Plot Tumor: The Isaac/Ellie/Norton Love Triangle isn't much beloved by fans, especially for what it does to Norton and Ellie. It becomes a large part of the game's conflict, despite being a new addition to the series, and Ellie and Isaac's prior relationship being entirely off-screen.
  • The Scrappy: Ellie is approaching this, mainly for breaking up with Isaac between the second and the third game and hooks up with Norton. Ignoring Isaac and embracing her new boyfriend for a kiss in front of him didn't endear her to many players, nor did her flippant attitude about Isaac's Shell-Shocked Veteran status. Some fans also do not like how less active in fighting the Necromorphs she has become. To be fair, Isaac got over his shell shocked status in the last game and falls right back into it after having a few more years out-of-story to deal with it. Also considering what Isaac has been through you would think she would understand.
  • Spiritual Adaptation: This is probably as close to a video game version of At the Mountains of Madness as we're going to get. Though it's technically closer to Beyond the Mountains of Madness from Call of Cthulhu.
  • "Stop Having Fun" Guys: A rare developer case. Visceral states they introduced the weapon crafting to force players to review and rethink their strategies throughout the game, as a way to combat Complacent Gaming Syndrome. The problem is that the exact wording of the statement implies that whoever did a Plasma Cutter-only run of the previous games was apparently playing them wrong, despite there being an achievement for such a run in the first game, and a special ability for fully upgrading it in the second.
    • Since they didn't implement situational requirements for fighting specific enemies, most players still just find the optimal weapon combination that suits their playstyle and stick with it.
  • Take That, Scrappy!: Have fun shooting Norton in the face. Again in Awakened, who's the first Necromorph you get to kill? That's right, Norton!
  • That One Level: Disposal Services. It's wave after wave of constant Elite Mooks who soak up crazy amounts of damage in every single room. Enjoy having to restock on ammo multiple times just to progress. It's worse because the only reason Isaac wants to go down there is to find more ammo and supplies. Ammo that he is doubtlessly using up just by going down there. There's not even any really interesting logs, just an enumeration of the threat levels for alien containment (level 5 being "kill everybody and everything and even the databanks", but we already knew that).
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: A common response to the new Universal Ammunition and crafting system (among other things). To counter this, the an unlockable "Classic Mode" was added, which includes Dead Space 1 rulesnote  (though it's classed as New Game+, so the player still has to play through the game in its new format to unlock it).
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Carver during a single player playthrough is all but nonexistent in the story, with the player having to play a multiplayer game in order to see pretty much anything about him at all. It would have been easily possible for a single player playthrough to allow the player to run through the whole game as either Issac or Carver or to switch between them at various points in the game as they go through their own stories.
    • Danik and his men are part of a sect of Unitology that believes mankind interference is corrupting the Markers and spawning Necromorphs. Their goal is to destroy artificial Markers to put things back on track and let them uplift mankind properly. This would have been a perfect opportunity to depict a Unitologist faction as misguided good guys and have them go up against the ruthless Earth Gov. Instead, the Circle is depicted in game as a bunch of generic fanatics who care little for innocent life and frequently Kick the Dog for no good reason.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: As mentioned above, the Circle is a Unitologist faction who despises Necromorphs rather than revere them. There is serious potential in a Unitologist civil war between those who believe the Necromorphs to be the promised higher lifeforms and those who think they are a mere corruption caused by human meddling. The groundwork for such an event has been laid out as early as the first game with the conflict between Kane and Mercer, who are Unitologists with opposing view on the Necromorph.

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