Release of the Week: Dead Space 3 (360, PS3, PC)

Dead Space 3In the cold vacuum of space, no one can hear you scream. That is, unless you bring along a friend. Systems engineer Isaac Clarke has gone from tragic romantic to paranoid schizophrenic throughout his encounters with the Necromorphs. For the first time, Clarke will be bringing a partner along to help. Sergeant John Carver’s introduction to the series will not only allow players to play Dead Space 3 cooperatively, but his advanced training has helped him teach Clarke how to hide behind chest high walls when fighting nightmarish monsters.

The Dead Space franchise is one of the few successful horror franchises of the high definition era. A protagonist with no remarkable abilities is trapped on a space ship, forced to dismember monsters using only his mining equipment. The dismemberment system was a unique feature that gave combat situations the tense nature that used to come from sluggish controls. Using the right weapon against the right enemy added an additional layer of strategy. Dead Space 2 expanded upon this formula even more to great success. There is no reason to think that Dead Space 3 will be any different.

Dead Space 3 adds more than just co-op and a cover system — Isaac Clarke can now also roll in his big bulky space suit. While previous games were set primary in space, the bulk of Dead Space 3 will take place on a frozen planet. (Shouldn’t it be called Dead Planet, then? — Pete)┬áThis planet contains more than just Necromorphs. Wasters are humanoids who change how they attack based on how their limbs are removed, while the Nexus are insect creatures who will swallow people whole. The Unitologists, a bizarre religious group seen throughout the series, have also sent a militarized group to the planet. There will be no shortage of things to shoot.

There has been some concern that with Dead Space 3 the series is becoming more action focused and less of a horror game. Rest assured that Dead Space 3 contains plenty of horrifying moments. Visit the Dead Space website to catch a glimpse of them. The good news is that there is no way that the Dead Space 3 advertisement campaign could be worse than Dead Space 2′s.

Fire Emblem: Awakening (3DS)

Awakening is the eleventh installment in the long-running turn-based strategy RPG series. Prince Chrom is investigating a plague of undead soldiers who have mysteriously appeared, threatening the peace between a neighboring kingdom and his own. The Prince comes upon the player’s character passed out in the desert with a classic case of JRPG amnesia. Having nothing better to do then join a world altering conflict, the player happily decides to tag along. Fire Emblem: Awakening is the first 3DS game that will feature paid DLC, so there will be even more game should you want it.

Sly Cooper Thieves in Time (PS3, Vita)

The fourth Sly Cooper title will bring the series’ stealth platforming to both the PlayStation 3 and Vita this week. The game features cross-buy, allowing purchasers of the PS3 version to get a free copy of the Vita version. This time the thieving raccoon will have to travel in time to protect the legacy of his ancestors. This will be the first game developed by Sanzaru Games rather than series creator Sucker Punch.

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