Play news The Callisto Protocol: A Simple Clone of Dead Space? The creator of the horror game answers us
The Callisto protocol returns to much fanfare in the latest state of the game and is coming soon to shake the shake of PCs and consoles. A project very reminiscent of Dead Space, the famous survival thriller that had thrilled the crowds back then PS3 / 360. And with good reason, it’s again Glen Schofield – the series’ father – who is in charge! Imagine we had the opportunity to ask him a few questions. Ready to shake? Then it’s time for the interview.
As a tasty “jump scare”, The Callisto Protocol surprised everyone when it was announced at the Game Awards 2020. A revelation that was enough to make you jump for joy – and not fear. How can you reject a new fear of survival from the creators of Dead Space with Glen Schofield himself, the father of the famous license, on board? Ten years ago, it was the ultimate horror game, at once oppressive, bloody, brutal. Simply scary. But after a half-hearted third episode and the closure of the Visceral Games studio (at the beginning of the three opuses released to date) the series was thrown into a deep silence. Glen Schofield, for his part, had already left the ship to join the Sledgehammer Games, a company he co-founded a few years earlier. We owe him several games of a famous FPS. “Believe it or not (before The Callisto Protocol, editor’s note) I was in the desert to rest after my ten years on Call of Duty,” the creator of Dead Space tells us via Zoom. “And when I was there, drawing, ideas came to me. The future The Callisto Protocol was one of his ideas ”.
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Beyond Dead Space
When watching The Callisto Protocol, it’s impossible not to think of Dead Space. Everything seems to be in the game: a lone hero who has to get out of a base in space, a game interface integrated into his back to amplify the immersion, a kind of telekinesis to escape desperate situations. Not to mention the brutality, the atmosphere, a lot of things actually. “Callisto has his own identity” says Glen Schofield. “The game takes place on the moon, in a prison, while Dead Space was put on a mining ship, so everything had to have something to do with mining resources. For this game, everything has to have a connection with the prison.”
In The Callisto Protocol, the main character is a pilot, while in Dead Space he was an engineer. They do not have the same competencies at all. -Glen Schofield
It is for this reason that the hero, Jacob Lee, will be able to count on his stunning relay. And that the creatures – the “Biophages” – (guards and prisoners who have mutated) carry implants with a biography that the player is given the opportunity to consult. But above all, Black Iron Prison offers a maze of optional corridors for Glen Schofield and his Striking Distance studio. “In the Callisto Protocol there is a deeper mystery” explains the developer to us. “The further you get in the game, the deeper you will sink into prison.”
The new project of the father of Dead Space will thus be able to count on “a rich story” and “processed characters”, of course more than in the famous horror series that made him famous. A way for Glen Schofield to bring a little humanity back to the Callisto Protocol, one of the pillars of “horror technique”, the nickname for the project’s creative vision. A term that refers to the sum of details needed to create a game of its kind. “When you make a scary title, a lot of things are done by hand” Glen Schofield informs us. “We are not talking about big systems like in an action game (…) here, everything starts from the guts (…) there is no pre-established schedule, no” pattern “, because otherwise it is no longer scary”.
To me, sound is a mechanism. I spent a lot of time with my sound instructor to review, detail by detail, the sound effects of the project (…) The graphics are also important. In The Callisto Protocol you will see a real maturity in terms of sets and lights (compared to Dead Space, editor’s note) -Glen Schofield
Succeed in creating horror
Among the other pillars, Glen Schofield mentions the atmosphere, the tension, the brutality, the impotence. It is therefore certain that in The Callisto Protocol you will first have to trust yourself, manage your ammunition well to anticipate the coming attempts (“there is a companion who will help Jacob Lee at different times in history”, says the developer though). With this in mind, Glen Schofield says his new project is hiding many side roads – where are improvements to the hero and explanations of the scenario. Despite a structure believed to be “fairly linear”, Jacob Lee will no doubt be disoriented in the Black Iron cave.
In The Callisto Protocol, there is a lot of replayability. You will not find all the optional paths and all the upgrades during your first game -Glen Schofield
Something to add even more to the atmosphere. Above all, there will be none in The Castillo Protocol no Dead Space navigation system, explains Glen Schofield, or a beautiful line on the ground that shows you the direction to follow. Another difference: the ability to grab enemies at a distance thanks to GRP, a gravitational weapon. “If four monsters attack you, with this tool, I can grab the first front, lift it and send it out into the landscape. I can also send it against obstacles, spikes, crushers” describes the developer. “I can even bring an enemy back in close combat and attack them with the stunning baton. “Not to mention that the environment is your friend, with objects – saws – to throw at opponents.
Would the Callisto protocol flash for Half Life 2? Maybe yes! “I’m a big fan of the game,” admits Glen Schofield. “Sometimes you get inspiration from the best games and cross your fingers that we do not blame one too much (laughs)”. Words that resonate in a certain way that Electronic Arts works with today a remake of Dead Space, scheduled for January 27, 2023. “I wish good luck to the developers, to the colleagues,” the father tells the licensee. They’re doing a remake of my game and it makes sense (…), but it’s true that it makes me feel a little weird. I would not have made a remake. I would have done something different ”.
- The Callisto Protocol will be released on December 2, 2022 on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series