Bioshock: Infinite (Irrational Games/ 2k Games)
Systems: Playstation 3, Xbox 360, PC Release Date: March 26th, 2013
ESRB: M for Mature
A misguided man once said “a slave chooses, a man obeys” and in Irrationals final game before closing their doors that phrase is put to the test as the familiar formula of a man with amnesia takes up his gun again to fulfill a destiny he might not be entirely in control of.
set in 1912, on the floating city/country of Columbia you play the desperate smuggler Booker Dewitt as he is charged with returning a girl to a mysterious benefactor. without going into to much of the history columbia is now in a civil war that is steeped in a myriad of social issues (race/class war, religion, substance abuse etc) themes that have been played out in rapture but brought into the light in far more intense ways in columbia. that being said once more without giving away the ending (which is almost worth the price of admission) you have seen this story before and should expect some familiar heavy handed social “shock” scenes.
moving on, bioshock infinite shares the same free form first person shooter combat you’ve come to expect from the franchise. there are plenty of ways to exploit your environment and use your plasm-excuse me- tonics to turn the flow of combat in your favor. weither due to time or funding perhaps many of the purposed game mechanics made it into the title half finished. only a few areas really support the fun rail traversal mechanic and where elizabeth was vaulted as useful and interesting she boiled down to an ammo resupply in combat. had the game had more funding or time perhaps it could have fleshed out these things but what we got by the end was a confusing jumble of ideas that melted into chaotic fire fights ala the end of bioshock 2 which left me wanting more of the gameplay trailer that proceeded the release back at e3 2011.
Going back to Elizabeth, I’m sure you might have heard after the game’s release about how amazing and truly unique Elizabeth was and I had to wonder if I had gotten a bad copy of the game. my Elizabeth was flat and offered only occasional interaction that made her feel much like any other tag along NPC some of which did her role better and didn’t even have a physical body to go with them (Cortana I’m lookin at you girl!) there were times when I really enjoyed her being by my side (pick up the guitar you’ll know it when you find it) but mostly she just didn’t impress, one thing she did do flawlessly tho was keep me supplied with ammo when things got hot kupo!
while not containing a multiplayer gametype Bioshock infinite does contain a few collectables that make going back and finding each one rewarding although it shouldn’t take more than a play through or two to find them all for the avid collector.
I would like to mention that I did not play the DLC as it did come out quite a awhile after the release and if a goty version comes out or I can get it on a deal I might go back to see the “burial at sea” storyline but just going off the base game I can say its a worthy effort and not a bad time. you’ll feel uncomfortable, you might even really care about elizabeth and booker’s story. but I think you should stay for the scenery. I found myself absorbing the world like a sponge. Colombia is atmosphere defined and its got little things tucked into every crazy crevice, to say you’ll want to take screenshots would be an understatement as the game truly has vista after vista of unique locals that will keep you entranced even when you have everything under the sun trying to kill you.
Overall it’s a wonderfully atmospheric game that has some hard stories to tell. if not for the mar in combat I’d say this was the best bioshock so far but the key elements just were not there in the end. defiantly a buy for fans of the first two and a rent for anyone else kupo!
[ - ] Story: I both love and hate the story within Bioshock Infinite, at times its unflinchingly realistic to the period it takes place and others it tries hard for the twists of past bioshock games and ultimatly leave the player confused.
[+] Graphics: pretty fantastic and what has been come to be expected with the Bioshock brand, stay to see the scenery if the gameplay isn’t for you.
[ - ] Gameplay: a typical first person shooter with some interesting ideas that are ultimately half baked. a more fleshed out rail system and better interaction with the lead Elizabeth would have given this a plus.
[+] Replayablity: more replayablity than past titles (not counting bioshock 2′s breif multiplayer) it still only warrents 2 play throughs with some careful combing.
[ + ] Opinion: the swan song of the bioshock franchise and done well, half baked mechanics and the trademark twisty ending are the weakest part of this package but is made up for in solid level design, and some amazing veiws.
I rate Bioshock Infinite a solid 3 Kupo!