Glen Schofield immerses us in Dead Space
Something dark is stirring in the depths of space; something mysterious. We'd quite like to know what. Can Glen Schofield, executive producer of EA's Dead Space tell us? Lets find out...
We love films like 'Alien' and 'Event Horizon', and Dead Space sounds like it draws inspiration from a number of cinematic classics. What movies have proved influential and which elements have you drawn upon most heavily?
The movies you mentioned are definitely ones I love, but the truth is I'm a huge sci-fi and horror fan and didn't look to any one movie as inspiration. I read a lot of sci-fi as well and just wanted to create something new. I realize there will be comparisons to other classics but its usually coincidental. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure on some subconscious level these movies have made their impact, but I truly wanted to create a new universe.
The survival horror genre has a number of benchmark titles already. How will Dead Space alter the well-established formula delivering something unique and fresh?
First of all we are sci-fi and that sets us apart from almost all the big recent survival horror games. Sci-fi allows us to experiment and introduce new mechanics and features into this genre-like zero-gravity or our stasis gun. Our weapons and enemies are extremely unique as is our "strategic dismemberment" which is the best way to neutralize the "necromorphs".
How gory and graphic is the game, given the horror premise? How important is this compared to tension and ambience?
The game will be gory but you are killing necromorphs and grotesque creatures, not humans. Gore, ambience, tension-they're all extremely important to the mood of the game. But where tension and ambience are pervasive throughout the game, gore is there to provide shock value at certain times.
Are you planning a tight, highly-scripted experience, or will gameplay be more open, offering the player multiple choices?
Both is the short answer. It's not an open world but you also have the choice of branching paths and multiple ways to accomplish your objectives.
Is combat the game's focus, if so, how will this element be implemented to the satisfaction of the player?
Good question and one we will continue to answer until the end. Combat has to feel great, smooth and intuitive but its not everything. Survival, tension, setting, puzzles and story are just as important to the game.
Why third-person - and not first?
I feel its much more personal and visceral.
Will the story being told in Dead Space end with the game's conclusion or is there more to follow?
Let's just say we won't leave you hanging.
How visually rich is the world of the game?
The attention to detail is remarkable. Its absolutely crucial that the player can relate to the world even though it's 500 years in the future. We want the environments to tell a big part of the story.
What role does music and audio play in enhancing tension and atmosphere, so key to the genre?
Couldn't make this game without either. Audio is key to our success. The right audio (or lack of it sometimes) the timing and the ambience are what can make or break a horror experience.
Finally, when will the game be with us and are there any differences between the versions in development?
We'll be announcing a date shortly but it's before Christmas. I can't really speak to any differences at this point in development.