A magic vending machine at the start of Dead Space 2 spews out the best equipment in the game for nothing.
In the original Dead Space you had to collect cash and other loot from corpses in order to exchange for increasingly better weapons and armour which gradually became available from vending machines as you progressed through the game. Dead Space 2 (bought recently in Steam Sale) appears to use the same mechanic so I was quite surprised to find that that the very first vending machine I came across seemed to be surprisingly well stocked. Not only did it contain upgraded versions of all of the game's weapons and armour but it was giving them all away for free!
My first thought was that this was some kind of tutorial mode. I have seen similar things in other games where your character starts out with all his powers but a triggered event at the end of the tutorial strips them all away until you earn them back through the course of the game. This is not the case here however. These super weapons are yours to keep for good.
A helpful post on the Steam forums sheds some light on the issue. Apparently these goodies are all extra downloadable content that for some reason comes bundled free with the Steam install. For many players including myself this is actually a game breaking flaw because it makes it difficult to experience the game as the developers intended. It is not just a matter of ignoring the obvious high end items. In the Steam version even basic items like ammunition and health packs that are supposed to be in short supply are unlocked at the beginning of the game and much more plentiful because of this.
There does not seem to be a way as of yet to remove the unwanted DLC from the Steam install but happily the respondents to that forum post figured out that you can use a Steam code to download the unmodified game directly from EA via the new Origin web store.
Apparently there is some kind of spat going on between Valve and EA at the moment but whether or not that has anything to do with this inconvenience I do not know. If however you bought the game from Steam and would prefer to play the original version without overpowered DLC then you can find instructions on how to do so in the forum post linked above. Not having used Origin before the process was a bit non intuitive for me so I detailed my step by step experience in post number 105 under the moniker of Liambp (Life is a ...geddit?).