Movies may not often do well in January, but a surprising amount of video games will take advantage of the dead season. Appropriately, the first big game of the year is the highly-anticipated Dead Space remake which not only improved the sound and graphics from the original 2008 PS3 version but also has been rebuilt from the ground-up. In addition, the upcoming Freelancer mode for Hitman 3 (also referred to as Hitman: World of Assassination), new single-player mode that takes place sometime after the epilogue to the game. More details on both below:
Hitman 3 \ Freelance Mode
Unlike Dead Space, the new Freelancer mode for Hitman 3 is keeping most of it's surprises under wraps until it lands on consoles Still, it is set to be a way for avid gamers of the series to continue the story of Agent 47 after Providence was destroyed and the International Contract Agency was exposed to the world. Now, as a freelance agent, you will be given missions to hunt down crime syndicate members across new maps while customizing your safehouse (essentially 47's home since the end of the game's narrative). The mode will also introduce rogue-like elements and strategic planning. Still, the trailer is a cinematic one that more captures the mood and set-up for the game continuation. Check it out below:
The mode will be available for all Hitman: World of Assassination owners to download on January 26th. The game is available for purchase on Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Stadia, and Nintendo Switch (via cloud gaming).
The remake will retain the same story and structure as the original 2008 game. In fact, many creative forces from the original series have returned to help make this certain. The remake's art director for the game is Mike Yazijan, who previously worked as art director at EA Montreal assisting Visceral Games in developing Dead Space 2. Still, Dead Space is no mere polish of the original.
Beyond completely redesigned assets, character models, and environments, developers are taking advantage of SSD's on the ninth generation of consoles to have the game be presented as an "uninterrupted sequence shot" and going beyond the limitations that hindered the original game when it premiered on PS3. This means, unlike the original game, there will be no loading screens and it's been rumored that content that was removed from the original game due to technical constraints may also be added. As a result, the game will allow a semi-open world experience so players can return to previous sections they've beaten in the game's macabre setting, the planet-cracking ship USG Ishimura. In addition, while the original musical score by Jason Graves was retained, new musical elements and cues have been composed by Trevor Gureckis. The biggest change however is that Gunner Wright will be reprising his role as Isaac Clarke, who will be fully voiced, like his appearances in Dead Space 2 and Dead Space 3. This is in contrast to the protagonist being silent in the original (a creative choice to make the player feel more immersed in the game). In addition, Tanya Clarke is also reprising her role as Nicole Brennan from Dead Space 2 as opposed to Iyari Limon who lent her voice and likeness to the character in the original.
So as to ease worries, the game will not feature any microtransactions, in contrast to Dead Space 3, where the addition of microtransactions resulted in a negative reception and whose inclusion led to a stale and ultimately low-selling game that essentially ended the series in it's tracks. As the launch trailer shows, this is a true Dead Space experience, drenched in a gothic atmosphere, incredible sound design, visuals, and a regular man enduring extraordinary horrors. Check it out below:
Dead Space is set to be available for PlayStation 5, Windows, and Xbox Series X/S on January 27th.