EA Redwood Shores came up against this problem making its sci-fi horror game Dead Space. On their first attempt, the team were not happy with their work. So, they decided to take a close look at some real bodies.
Writing for Edge today, exec producer Glen Schofield explains, "In the story of Dead Space, there was a war that happened on the ship before Isaac, the main character, gets there. So he's going to find a lot of nasty stuff, corpses in various states of annihilation.
"We knew this would be difficult to portray, because sometimes gore in games looks cheap and unrealistic. Sure enough, the first few corpses that we did, just weren't convincing enough. I rejected them.
"This sounds horrible, but we had to go look at pictures of car accidents and war scenes and things like that because we had to get it right; we had to portray scenes of terrible carnage and realism. It's a big part of making that experience convincing."