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Dead Space 3

Dead Space 3 Preview: Isaac's Weapon Crafting Gets Creative
by Bryan Vore on Oct 18, 2012 at 11:09 AM
Platform PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC
Publisher Electronic Arts
Developer Visceral Games
Rating Mature


Dead Space hero Isaac Clarke is a known gun tinkerer, frequently boosting his weapons’ ammo capacity, damage rates, and reload speeds. For the latest entry, developer Visceral Games is scrapping this node-based upgrade system and starting over. Isaac still relies on old favorites like the plasma cutter and ripper in combat, but now you can combine both into a single necromorph-slicing machine. Read on to find out how a little weapon creativity goes a long way on the chilling new planet of Tau Volantis.


Before you get too carried away with wild weapon combos, it’s important to select the right frame for the job. The two options on display so far include the compact frame for one-handed guns and the heavy frame for two-handers. 

Upper Tool

Now the fun starts. If you’ve collected the necessary parts, you can choose from an arsenal ranging from a flamethrower to the necromorph-impaling telemetry spike. Here are some examples we’ve seen so far.

• Pneumatic Torch - An incendiary device fueled by compressed gas

• Military Engine - A military weapon used by S.C.A.F. forces

• Plasma Core - A cutting tool that fires ionized plasma fuel

• Tesla Core - An engine for high-current electric welding

• Telemetry Spike - A mining tool that fires tempered alloy bolts

• Survey Charge - A seismic tool that fires explosive canisters

• Rip Core - A short-range suspended saw blade tool

• Hydraulic Cutter - A bayonet-like cutting tool, used for clearing large areas


Upper Adaptor

This is essentially a barrel that augments the upper weapon. The tesla core, for example, can be changed from a focused beam to a bouncy bola, sticky electrified bola, or an arcing electrical current that can spread among multiple targets. Every weapon type has this amount of variety and more. Here are a few examples:

• Precision Adaptor - Focuses effect or projectile for increased accuracy and lethality

• Compressor - Compresses effect or projectile into a more compact, intense form

• Directed Suspension Field - Enables kinetic suspension of effect or projectile

• Diffraction Torus - Allows effect or projectile to spread around the point of impact

• Directed Ejection Field - Fires effect or projectile in short, forceful impulses

• Rail Accelerator -  Accelerates effect or projectile at high speed with penetrating force

Top Attachment And Side Attachment

As you can see from the examples below, these two add-on slots offer a range of supplemental abilities that can make you more deadly in combat or help out your co-op partner.

• Ammo Box - Automatically reloads after last shot

• Ammo Support - Increases ammo efficiency for self and partner

• Ammo Sweeper - Automatically picks up nearby ammo

• Damage Support - Increases partner’s damage with all weapons

• Full Zoom Scope - Prototype military scope for advanced long-range aiming

• Medic Support - Health packs consumed by self also heal partner

• Safety Guard - Prevents user from taking damage from his own weapons

• Scope - Military scope for long-range aiming

• Acid Bath - Coats projectiles in acid that does damage over time

• Electric Charge - Electrifies projectiles to cause small amounts of voltaic damage

• Flame Glaze - Adds fire to projectiles

Lower Tool And Adaptor

Using the same list of options you have for the upper gun, you can add a different weapon effect on the secondary fire button. This is where the real creativity comes in. Will you combine long and short range attacks? Maybe you want to have scoped acid shots. They’re all options.

Upgrade Circuits

Mixing and matching unique weapons is a nice option to have, but what if you want to improve a combo you already like? Upgrade circuits work much like the old power nodes, offering improvements to damage, rate of fire, reload speed, clip size, and more.


Once your custom weapon is complete, you give it a name and a custom blueprint is generated. You can share your concoctions with co-op partners, but EA wouldn’t say whether it’s building an online platform for sharing them with the rest of the world. If you’re concerned that crafting could be too distracting to the campaign, blueprints are also scattered throughout the game so you can simply tap a button, get a new weapon instantly, and be on your way. These range from traditional weapons like a simple sniper rifle to a chain gun/rocket launcher combo.

This article originally appeared in issue #235 of Game Informer Magazine.

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Dead Space 3

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