Dead Space Wiki
"That organic shit on the walls, that's dead tissue too. The crew thought it was a... habitat changer."
Kendra Daniels[1]
DSR Spiral of Unknown Horror

A growth of Corruption on the USG Ishimura with human remains visible.

The Corruption is an encrusting mass of Necromorph tissue typically found wherever an outbreak occurs, growing and spreading in the presence of a Marker signal. Described as a "habitat changer", the Corruption has been documented to remove free oxygen from the atmosphere and metabolize it into unknown poisonous gases in conjunction with Wheezers, posing a threat to the long term existence of any individuals who have not yet been killed by the other Necromorph forms.


"This substance is absolutely fascinating. Given its affinity for dead tissue, at first I thought it was some sort of fungus, but the cells most closely resemble bacteria with viral behavior. This organism infects other cells through osmosis, then mutates and reproduces agamogenetically. What's most incredible is the speed at which it grows. One of these bacterium reproduces twenty-fold in just one minute. That's why we haven't been able to pinpoint any specific origin point, I think. It just seemed to be in multiple points on the ship, all at once."
—Prof. Heinrich Jagerwald on the USG Ishimura.[2]

The Corruption is one of the first and most pervasive signs of a Necromorph outbreak. Like all Necromorph tissue, the Corruption only exists in the presence of a Marker signal and originates from reanimated dead cells.

Corrpution tripod nest

Corruption formation in the Tripods' Nest.

Scans showed that, after Marker 3A was destroyed and the Corruption was reduced to an organic sludge due to the absence of a Marker signal, what was left was only 70% human DNA.[3] This implies that the Corruption will use any available biological matter—or, at least, any animal tissue—to grow. This makes sense from a practical standpoint; the Corruption can spread via otherwise-useless food sources, leaving the intact corpses to become combat-oriented Necromorphs.

According to a log addressed to Dr. Cross, the Corruption resembles a bacteria. It infects dead cells through osmosis, whereupon it proceeds to reproduce asexually at an incredible rate. This allows it to spread far and fast during an outbreak, even in areas of low available biomass. It has an extremely rapid growth rate. A member of the Ishimura crew remarked that by the time they had finished sterilizing an area of the Corruption, it had already grown back, and in even greater size.[4]

DSR Aegis VII Colony Corruption

The Corruption covering the Aegis VII Colony.

The Corruption's role during an outbreak seems to be one of support; it passively converts the local atmosphere into noxious gas, and grows through hallways and ventilation systems—which has the dual effect of blocking potential escape routes and rapidly spreading via a preexisting network of convenient vent shafts. Additionally, the Corruption provides a universal source of ready biomass for recombination, as well as a convenient substrate on which non-mobile Necromorph variants can grow.

According to Gabe Weller, the Corruption smells like vomit, likely a side effect of its aforementioned atmospheric conversion. The fact that Isaac treads carefully and heavily when walking over it seems to indicate that the growth has a slick surface. This is corroborated by the experience of Security officer Nathan McNeill; when McNeill fell through a pipe full of Corruption, he seemed to slide down it at extremely high speeds.


"Not even Medical knows what the hell this stuff is - it looks like someone threw their guts up all over the walls, and smells about the same. It's spreading faster than we can cut it up, which is pretty disgusting in itself."
—Engineer C. Danvers on the USG Ishimura.[4]
DSR Launch Trailer Marker

Marker 3A surrounded by Corruption created by its signal.

It was revealed through ship logs, read to Isaac by Kendra Daniels, that the Corruption is a habitat changer, somewhat of a Necromorph "biome", suggesting that the Necromorphs can more easily infest the ship with its presence. Guardians, Cysts and Nests can only grow and appear around the Corruption, furthering the theory that the Corruption grows by absorbing and consuming organic matter around it. This also helps support the theory that the Corruption is more of a Necromorph habitat, as Cysts, Guardians, and Nests appear to be unable to be formed or spawned without it.

The Corruption presumably also serves to provide more Necromorph biomass for the coming Convergence; it is likely that, when a Brethren Moon is formed, much of the biomass it absorbs belongs to the Corruption.


  • The Corruption bears a great resemblance to Flood Hives from the Halo series. Both are composed of organic tissue that covers the walls and floors of certain areas, and also change the environment to be more suitable for its inhabitants (either Necromorphs or Flood).
    • The Corruption is also similar to the Zerg Creep from the StarCraft series, though the Creep does not affect movement speed of non-Zergs traversing it, unlike the Corruption.
  • In Dead Space: Downfall, the Corruption, at one point in the movie, has two "lungs" which make a breathing sound similar to Isaac's.



ne amount of