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Dead Space Remake Almost Didn’t Have Pause Functionality, Developer Reveals

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Dead Space is widely regarded as one of the best and scariest survival horror games of all time, and as it is, developer Motive Studio is looking to up the scares considerably with the upcoming remake in more than one way. However, if things had gone a little differently during the development, the Dead Space perhaps a remake made another crucial change that could have raised the horror elements significantly further.

Recently spoke with reverse, Dead Space’s Director of Realization Joel MacMillan revealed that Motive Studio was considering removing the pause functionality altogether, so that players wouldn’t have that constant crutch available to be able to pause and take a breather when things got too intense.

“In horror games, you can pause and you have a moment of safety there,” he said. “You can take a breath. And I think you get rid of that. It deflates some of the tension. But with persistent online games, you’re playing with dozens of other people, and you can’t just pause everyone’s game.

“I think removing that as a feature would make horror games much more impactful – you’d really feel like you’re never really safe.”

“I still tend to get restless when playing these games,” added MacMillan. “So I like to have a pause button, personally. But if you really wanted a scary, edge-of-your-seat, anxiety-filled experience, getting rid of that pause button would help.”

Of course, Ultimate Motive Studio decided against the idea, and the Dead Space a remake is going to let you pause the action after all – although it’s certainly an interesting idea, especially for this genre in particular. Not being able to pause in the middle of the game can raise the tension dramatically – a number of FromSoftware games have proven that beyond any doubt over the years – so hopefully we’ll see how something like that can affect a horror experience in the not too distant future.

Meanwhile, in the same interview, the developers of the Dead Space Remake also confirmed that its in-game remake map will be 2D, rather than the 3D map of the original, and that the game will include a New Game Plus option.

Dead Space due out on January 27 for PS5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC.


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