Game Review #5

Bioshock (Xbox360)

Bioshock is a horror first-person shooter game developed by Irrational Games.  While on the surface it might look like little more than a very pretty first-person shooter, BioShock is much, much more than that. Sure, the action is fine, but its primary focus is its story, a sci-fi mystery that manages to feel retro and futuristic at the same time, and its characters, who convey most of the story via radio transmissions and audio logs that you’re constantly stumbling upon as you wander around.  All of it blends together to form a rich, interesting world that sucks you in right away and won’t let go until you’ve figured out what is going on in the undersea city of Rapture.

BioShock opens with a bang, but the overall plot focuses more on making an emotional impact than an explosive one. The year is 1960, and you’re flying over the Atlantic Ocean. One mysterious plane crash later, you’re floating in the water, apparently the lone survivor, surrounded by the flaming wreckage of the aircraft. But there’s a lighthouse on a tiny island just at the edge of your view. Who in their right mind would put a lighthouse this far out?  You swim closer and discover a small submersible called a bathysphere waiting to take you underwater. After catching a breathtaking view of what’s below, you’re sent into the secret underwater city of Rapture.  “Masterminded by a somewhat megalomaniacal businessman named Andrew Ryan, this city is driven by its own idea of total freedom, with capitalism completely unhindered by governmental meddling and science unhinged from the pesky morals of organized religion.” Sounds like the perfect society, right? Well, even before you step out of your bathysphere and into the city, it becomes obvious that everything has gone horribly wrong in Rapture

As previously stated, this game is all about the emotional impact.  It plays mostly on the emotions of fear and morality.  This game is designed to have a creepy environment where rooms can all of a sudden turn pitch black and all you can hear is your enemies talk to you and coming at you.  It also contains characters that just seem to be completely depraved.  They show you and ask you to do things that are nonsensical and just plain weird.  There are plot twists and turns and some decisions that you have to make which change the outcomes the plot.

I am currently about halfway through the game.  There are many interesting aspects to the gameplay and story line that you would simply have to play to understand.  I’m not sure of the outcome of this game or when the climax is going to happen, but I am full of anticipation.  I would highly recommend this game to those who like horror games.  I can’t wait to see how the story progresses and leads into the sequel.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Kenny on October 10, 2010 at 10:08 pm

    I’ve heard that this is a fantastic game. I haven’t played very many horror type games before, but I love horror/thriller books and movies so I should really enjoy this genre of game. Although I don’t like audio logs in games. I almost never listen to them. Then again, I prefer games with lots of action with a decent story than a game with fantastic story and little else. I’m the opposite for movies, but that is because that fits my attention span. Games last much longer and I usually just want to de-stress and break things when I play games.

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  2. Perhaps one of my favorite games out there. The story is great and the gameplay flows very well. The end of this game just leaves you wanting more and that’s what they give you in game #2, you get to play as one of those Big Daddies, like the one in the picture. They had a very unique way of collecting energy. Those Big Daddies are protecting their “Little Sisters,” who are full of energy that you can use for new powerups. This is where the moral choices you talked about come into play, you can choose to either one, save the little sister by removing the worm that controls her, giving you less energy but saves the girl, or two, kill the little sisters and take all the energy they have to use on yourself. Probably one of the first games I played that had me make such a rash decision. Remember, doing the evil thing may give you something small immediately but doing good deeds in games will give you something amazing at the end. Just saying!

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  3. I actually just picked up Bioshock 2 this weekend. I’ve gotten about an hour or so of gameplay under my belt and so far, so good. I like the narrative that they are going for in this one. I can’t wait to see what happens and learn more about the messed up city of Rapture. Also, yes of course i’m going to save the girls… at least on the first play through.

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