Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Genre Character of the week: Isaac Clarke

For the last few weeks I’ve been playing the 2008 PS3 game Dead Space. My wife got it for me as an Anniversary gift (our 14th! which means if our marriage was a kid it could apply for a Learner’s permit!) and I’ve been playing it on the weekends ever since.

The game in three simple words?

Zombies. In. Space.

Seriously, it’s like back in 2007 someone at Electronic Arts went “Hey I think we should make a videogame for that Bookmonkey guy, and I’ve got just the right idea, Zombies in Space! Who is this Bookmonkey? Well let me tell you, next year this upstart Canadian Dad is going to jump onto the blogging bandwagon and a few months after that over a dozen people will be publicly following him on blogger – seriously! Now, it’s important to remember that he won’t be getting a PS3 until late 2010, and won’t even be touching this game until after Halloween in 2011, but we might get lucky and strike a chord with some other players between now and then, who knows, maybe more than one guy likes the idea of fighting space zombies!”

Anyway, my theories of game design (delusional as they may be) aside, the game follows an engineer named Isaac Clarke, named after Science Fiction authors Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke (neither of which wrote about space zombies) who spends the entire game fixing a massive mining ship in deep space while fighting off zombies and also happens to be our genre character of the week.

Isaac doesn’t actually speak, but he is resourceful, brave and willing to fight his way through some of the nastiest zombies I’ve ever come across – seriously the game has some pretty nasty visuals, so make sure your kids are in bed before you start playing.

I guess what I like best about Isaac is the fact that he’s not a soldier, but instead a guy who goes around fixing things and making his world a better, zombie-less place.

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