- "The crew that was on this deck... I think they're what's poisoning the air. They've been transformed... I saw one of them, bloated, swollen. They're poison factories...we need to take them out while we can still breathe..."
- —Hammond reports to Isaac what he experienced
Wheezers are stationary Necromorphs which generate and exhale poisonous gases.
Wheezers are a type of Necromorph found in the sixth chapter of Dead Space. There are only a total of eight Wheezers encountered throughout Dead Space. The Wheezers are responsible for poisoning the air, and all must be killed in order to gain access to the food storage container the Leviathan resides in.
They resemble humans more than any of the other Necromorph species, except for their lungs, which are many times the normal size of human lungs and located outside of their body, taking up most of their back. They are constantly in a kneeling position, because their arms and legs are fused together, and as a result are incapable of any type of movement. A distinct strained breathing sound can be heard in the vicinity of a Wheezer, hence the name. They are most likely the "terraformers" of any Necromorph ecosystem.
Wheezers are virtually harmless; while being in the same room as them drains the player's oxygen, they lack any offensive capability and can be dispatched quickly. In fact, all of them (with the exception of one stuck in a nutrient vat storage chamber) can be killed with foot-stomps to conserve ammo. They are often alone, and the only true threat is multiple dangerous Necromorphs appearing after their death.
- No strategy is needed for the Wheezers, as they are mostly harmless to the player. They should still be dealt with fast, as their gas can cause Isaac to suffocate to death, as it fills up the room that the player is in, and only dissipates when the Wheezer is eliminated. A simple foot-stomp will save ammunition (barring the one out of reach, where a firearm is needed.)
- However, one should be wary of what comes after the Wheezer is dealt with. Several Infectors, Pregnants, Lurkers and Slashers can all attack after the Wheezer is killed.
- Never use a Line Gun's alternate fire on the Wheezer or any other immobile Necromorphs, such as the immature Guardian, as the mine will detonate instantly, and deal no damage.
- Don't try to kill a Wheezer with the Flamethrower, because it won't work, as if you were in a vacuum.
- Kinesis can also be used. Ammo, various objects, even bits of smashed containers; all cause damage when shot with Kinesis. With 3-4 blasts, the Wheezer dies with no loss of ammo. Oddly though explosives don't kill them instantly, like most other Necromorphs.
- Stasis, though applicable on Wheezers, does not really provide much usefulness, as the gas it emanates is an environmental property and could not be slowed down with stasis; the one situation in which one may want to use stasis is to observe the breathing pattern (animation) if the energy would be unneeded otherwise.
- Although the Hydroponics Deck is seen in Dead Space: Downfall and Dead Space: Extraction, the Wheezers are neither shown nor mentioned.
- Due to a development oversight, if a Wheezer causes Isaac to suffocate, his corpse will float around the room, even if he is not in space or in a Zero-G area. This is probably due to the fact that the gaseous environmental effect created by Wheezers uses a part of the game's vacuum script, and would cause the same "floating effect" when Isaac suffocates to death.
- The Wheezer is the only Necromorph in Dead Space that does not attack Isaac directly. However, the poison it generates will still harm him.
- The appearance of the Wheezer in Dead Space: Martyr makes it one of the first Necromorphs in the Dead Space universe, appearing two centuries prior to the events of the game.
- However considering the existence of the Brethren Moons, it is the first human based Necromorph.
- Wheezer's lungs in Dead Space: Martyr are said to be as large as a building.
- In Dead Space: Martyr the Wheezer seemed to behave differently, for example it's lungs grew larger most likely because of the free space of earth compared to the confined spaces of the Ishimura.
- Unlike other Necromorphs, Wheezers completely and utterly ignores any and all human presence around them, probably because of their immobility and non-combat purpose rendered them incapable of interacting with prey.
- However the (presumed) Wheezer encountered by Chava in Dead Space: Martyr perhaps does seem to acknowledge the boy's presence by shifting its view at him and apparently even tried to smile.
- Wheezers are one of three Necromorph types which do not make an appearance in Dead Space 2, but they reappear in Dead Space 3 in the optional mission "Archeology", their models and coding re-used from the original Dead Space. There's seemingly no genuine reason for the Wheezers to be present, as only two are found within a small sealed bunker. Killing them does not remove the toxic atmosphere this time.
- A Wheezer is a non-physics based enemy that is essentially similar to a lock fuse in that it, when attacked, will play an animation and be replaced by a damaged version of the original and must be damaged in order to progress through the game. Kinesis cannot be used on the corpse; neither can it be moved by walking into it or using any weapon on it. Unlike most Necromorphs, Wheezers cannot be dismembered in any way.
- The Wheezers do not have a scripted death scene, Isaac will still float in the air even if some Wheezers are in an area with gravity, this is caused by a developer oversight.
- Even though the video to the right shows Issac and a Wheezer already in a zero-g area of the Ishimura, this is the scene that will always happen with or without gravity.