There are reasons Dead Space 3 looks a lot like some other blockbuster shooters – several million of them in fact.

The game needs to sell five million copies for the series to continue, according to EA Labels president Frank Gibeau.

"In general we're thinking about how we make this a more broadly appealing franchise, because ultimately you need to get to audience sizes of around five million to really continue to invest in an IP like Dead Space,” he said.

"Anything less than that and it becomes quite difficult financially given how expensive it is to make games and market them.”

The game has drawn some criticism for diluting its horror elements through the addition of co-op, but those moments are still present, claimed Gibeau.

"We embraced [the co-op] idea and we tried to open up the accessibility of the IP a little bit by adding a little bit more action, but not undermining the horror. We can't not be a horror game because that's what Dead Space is."

“We definitely do not want to piss off our fans by taking it too far from horror... we have to be very paranoid about making sure we don't change the experience so much that we lose the fanbase," he said.

“It's definitely not getting away from gore or horror, but at the same time it's opening up to a larger audience by adding some elements."

The Ridley Scott film Prometheus was an inspiration for EA as it managed to attract a broader appeal thanks to casting and imagery, he said.

Dead Space 3 is slated for a February 2013 release on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Windows PC.