Dead Space has Gravity Gun

Horror shooter takes a hint from HL2.

Electronic Arts' promising survival horror game Dead Space was being shown off in a suitably creepy basement in London this week - and we couldn't help but notice that hero Isaac Clarke is sporting an ability that he's definitely picked up from Gordon Freeman's playbook.

Using a device which executive producer Glen Schofield called the TK Gun, Isaac is able to pull objects to himself and then fire them away - grabbing pick-ups from the other side of a large space, for instance, or firing sharp objects at oncoming nasties to slash their limbs off in a gory mess. The gun is also used to solve puzzles by moving objects around.

Sound familiar? Yes, it's functionally identical to Half-Life 2's gravity gun - the first time that we've seen the mechanism fully implemented outside of Valve's opus, and perhaps a fitting homage to HL2's own rather horrific moments, such as the Ravenholm level.

Dead Space is on track for the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC later on this year. Despite being described as a survival horror game, the action-heavy sections we saw had more in common with scary, atmospheric shooters like Doom 3 than with the slower, more psychological nature of Silent Hill or Project Zero.

We'll be taking a more in-depth look at Dead Space shortly. In the meanwhile, gore-fans can get themselves excited over the fact that the very first feature Schofield listed when talking about the game was "strategic dismemberment". Oh yes.

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