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[pc/360/ps3] Bioshock

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#1
talok iv

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BioShock
Xbox 360/PC
Published by: 2k Games

Developed by: 2K Boston and Australia
Genre: First-Person Shooter
Number of Players: 1
Release Date:
US: August 21, 2007
Europe: August 24, 2007
Australia: August, 24, 2007
Rated M for Mature 17+ (Or anyone who can beg their parents or older brother to buy it for them)

Intro
The experience when playing an FPS game is pretty standard throughout. Although sometimes developers like to switch things up now and then, sometimes they fail miserably and sometimes they do a kick ass job. In BioShock's case it seems to be the latter. 2K has managed to implement RPG elements into an FPS title. Between the customization of plasmids and tonics, the moral choices of the little sisters... it really does put itself into a different genre rarely seen before.

To quote IGN's Charles Onyett, because I couldn't have said it better myself:
QUOTE
But to call this game simply a first-person shooter, a game that successfully fuses gameplay and narrative, is really doing it a disservice. This game is a beacon. It's one of those monumental experiences you'll never forget, and the benchmark against which games for years to come will, and indeed must, be measured. This isn't merely an evolution of System Shock 2, but a wake-up call to the industry at large. Play this, and you'll see why you should demand something more from publishers and developers, more than all those derivative sequels forced down our throats year after year with only minor tweaks in their formulas. It's a shining example of how it's possible to bring together all elements of game design and succeed to the wildest degree.
-Charles Onyett


Graphics & Visuals
The graphics in this game are really well done. Every visual detail looks like it was examined through a microscope, including the more technical graphical aspects. Top-notch water and lighting effects give this game that real appearance, which makes the journey into Rapture that much more believable, which something alot most other games struggle with. The lighting is especially good here, which is why it is very important at the beginning of the game to select the correct light setting.


Characters & Story
The game takes place in an underwater world called Rapture. You start out as an unknown character whose plane crashes and then which you end up swimming into a lighthouse, and as you descend down into a bathasphere to enter the city. As you make your way to the entrance, you are greeted with a welcoming video, explaining the orgin of the city and its creator. A man named Andrew Ryan decided to create a world free from the constraints of morality.
QUOTE
A world where artists would not fear censorship and doctors and scientists could work without fear of interference on moral grounds.


As you play you learn more about the city and how to came to be. You soon learn that ADAM is the main resource down under, and there is only one source of it throughout - Little Sisters. In order to prevent people from harrasing the sisters, they created Big Daddies to protect them.



You are faced with a moral decision to either Harvest or Save the little sisters which in turn effects the end of the game. The decision is up to you and you only.

Gameplay & Controls
Gameplay for the most part is your standard FPS, run & gun -- but with a twist this time. The addition of plasmids (powers) add a little creativity to the game, but also alot of fun.

The biggest problem with the game was that they give you all this cool stuff you can do, but no real incentive to do it -- Plasmids are mostly a suggestion that become handy only in extremely staged situations or when you run out of bullets. Unless you are playing on the highest difficulty setting from the get go, you will find yourself shooting ALOT more than using your powers, which renders them useless unless you happen to run out of bullets.

In the end though, the controls are relatively smooth. Especially with the feature of the scroll-selection of the plasmids and weapons.

Sound & Music
One of the greatest parts about this game is its sense of irony. Throughout most of the game, your speakers will be filled with the showtunes and big band music of the 30's and 40's, all while you're blowing people to bits. It is the awkward and ironic sense of the music that makes it so great, sometimes you'll even start to sing along too! The sounds of the enemies is great aswell. The soundwork of the Big Daddies and Littles Sisters is really well done, and you'll be shivering in your seat as you hear "Mr. B" and those loud grunts from the Daddies.

Rent it or buy it?

This game is a game that you will only want to play through a couple times. After that, it just becomes shelf space.

Rent.


Overall
Bioshock fully won me over with sucessfully implementing RPG-style elements into an FPS game. Storyline was outstanding, one of the best I've seen so far. Music went with the mood, and the quirky ads and awesome visuals were great to boot. The game does have some down sides to it, but all and all it is a game definitely worth playing.

This is why Bioshock gets a:
9.75/10

Edited by The Colonel, 06 August 2009 - 11:04 PM.


#2
Plasmic Fury

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Nice review.

Although I must say, I used my plasmidsa lot and I found lots of incentive to use em, Weather it was shocking a zombie in the water with electricity or burning my way through a cave of ice.

I always found I never had enough bullets lol.



#3
Zanzibar

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QUOTE (Plasmic Fury @ Apr 16 2008, 04:14 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I always found I never had enough bullets lol.

Same here, I was always shocking people then twatting them with the wrench.

One thing though, I always thought Bioshock more praise than it was due. Especially with the morality thing. Next part in spoiler tags btw.

If you go through the game sparing the little sisters, they eventually take you into their wee sanctuary after you 'beat' Cohen. Now, that makes perfect sense, your their friend, they help you out. But if you go around killing them, they still help you! WTF? Surely they could have made a different part for that? It just seems lazy in my opinion.

Not major I know, but really threw me off.

#4
talok iv

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QUOTE (Zanzibar UK @ Apr 17 2008, 12:17 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
-spoiler-


One of the main reasons I actually want to play the game again (besides achievements) was the fact of the alternate storyline and how harvesting the little sisters would affect it (I saved them my first run through).

They should've been more creative with this, add a different route in the story, I completely agree.

Hopefully in the sequel coming out in October '09, they'll be a bit more creative with the storyline.

#5
Destructor

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While it was a great game and I really enjoyed playing through it twice (for both endings), I still feel like it gets more praise than it deserves. The gameplay was pretty standard FPS-fare, and I felt the powers didn't add as much as they could have. They basically amounted to just more weapons; an electric weapon, a flame weapon, a homing bee weapon, a super gravity gun (telekenesis), etc. The so-called "rpg elements" really weren't. Compared to Deus Ex, System Shock 2, or even STALKER, the extra elements of Bioshock were extremely simplistic. They felt much more like just extra weapons that could be upgraded along with your regular ones. The setting and story were both very good, although the ending (both) was just an annoying cop-out. The graphics were very good but I don't feel like that's very important when reviewing a game. More importantly, the game developers had promised a nonlinear, unscripted experience where you had to interact with the AI and take advantage of that to survive. That just didn't happen in the game, though (Crysis is the clear winner here). The game amounted to more or less standard FPS shoot-everything gameplay, but with the ability to set very basic tripwire traps (which has been done before) and recruit friendly NPCs (hacking). The other small gameplay elements that seem unique in Bioshock, like zap-em-and-whack-em or the classic light em on fire then zap the water they run to, seem kind of gimmicky after the first couple times you do them. And the two I listed are virtually all there is, when they could have done so much more with the plasmids. There were so many possibilities, it's a shame. So the game pretty much amounts to an above-average FPS with a few unique elements that didn't live up to what was promised.

I'd personally say Bioshock is 8.5/10, and I don't really get why everyone scores it so highly. I didn't see anything in your review that seemed to justify such a high rating as 9.75/10 (which is a near-perfect game), and the same is true for most game reviews I've read of it. Sure, it's a great game. But is it THAT good?

Maybe it's just the xbox 360 people who are used to simpler games like Halo, when they see something like Bioshock, it seems much more complex and deep than the standard stuff they are used to. I feel that to the PC gamers who are used to more complex FPSes like Deus Ex or STALKER, Bioshock seems like a good-looking but slightly dumbed-down version of those.
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#6
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QUOTE (talok iv @ Apr 16 2008, 12:14 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The biggest problem with the game was that they give you all this cool stuff you can do, but no real incentive to do it -- Plasmids are mostly a suggestion that become handy only in extremely staged situations or when you run out of bullets. Unless you are playing on the highest difficulty setting from the get go, you will find yourself shooting ALOT more than using your powers, which renders them useless unless you happen to run out of bullets.


The whole point of plasmids is for you to customize the way you want to play. Plus there's the interactive environments that you can use Plasmid effects on. There was no insentive, but it allowed you to combine plasmids in a way that allowed a different playstyle...Wrench Lurker, anyone? pp_smiley4.gif

QUOTE (talok iv @ Apr 17 2008, 02:47 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
One of the main reasons I actually want to play the game again (besides achievements) was the fact of the alternate storyline and how harvesting the little sisters would affect it (I saved them my first run through).

They should've been more creative with this, add a different route in the story, I completely agree.

Hopefully in the sequel coming out in October '09, they'll be a bit more creative with the storyline.


Personally I want to see Bioshock 2 have a bit more of a free-roaming/sandbox style gameplay. They've already made a combat system that encourages multiple styles of gameplay, it'd be good if the story followed suit.

#7
Utttand4

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QUOTE (Destructor @ Apr 18 2008, 01:57 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
While it was a great game and I really enjoyed playing through it twice (for both endings), I still feel like it gets more praise than it deserves. The gameplay was pretty standard FPS-fare, and I felt the powers didn't add as much as they could have. They basically amounted to just more weapons; an electric weapon, a flame weapon, a homing bee weapon, a super gravity gun (telekenesis), etc. The so-called "rpg elements" really weren't. Compared to Deus Ex, System Shock 2, or even STALKER, the extra elements of Bioshock were extremely simplistic. They felt much more like just extra weapons that could be upgraded along with your regular ones.

This, as well as the horrible controls, is whats keeping me from buying the full game.
QUOTE (Jarett @ Feb 17 2008, 08:41 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think console shooters suck balls.

#8
eedok

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The PC version should get double reamed seeing as how it's bundled with a rootkit and all(fuck securom)

#9
DethFanatic

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QUOTE (Utttand4 @ Apr 18 2008, 05:24 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This, as well as the horrible controls, is whats keeping me from buying the full game.


Uhhh, the controls were not horrible, unless you are missing a hand tbh.

#10
Utttand4

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QUOTE (DethFanatic @ Apr 18 2008, 03:36 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Uhhh, the controls were not horrible, unless you are missing a hand tbh.

I am an avid fan of the Jedi Knight series, if you have played any of those games, you would agree that the Bioshock plasmid controls are atrocious.

The controls were designed around console controllers rather than keyboard+mouse.
Left trigger is fire, right trigger is toggle between plasmids and weapons, wtf?

It would be much, much more fluid if plasmids were activated via hotkey.
QUOTE (Jarett @ Feb 17 2008, 08:41 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think console shooters suck balls.

#11
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QUOTE (Utttand4 @ Apr 18 2008, 03:24 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This, as well as the horrible controls,

Maybe I'm crazy, but I seem to recall the controls being EXACTLY THE SAME AS EVERY OTHER FPS GAME ON PC.

What the fuck?
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#12
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QUOTE (Utttand4 @ Apr 18 2008, 05:39 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I am an avid fan of the Jedi Knight series, if you have played any of those games, you would agree that the Bioshock plasmid controls are atrocious.

The controls were designed around console controllers rather than keyboard+mouse.
Left trigger is fire, right trigger is toggle between plasmids and weapons, wtf?

It would be much, much more fluid if plasmids were activated via hotkey.


Plasmids can be toggled with the function (f-number) keys. It's a bit awkward but you get used to it, and they're certainly not so horrible it didn't stop me playing through it.

#13
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QUOTE (Tendrax @ Apr 18 2008, 05:41 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Maybe I'm crazy, but I seem to recall the controls being EXACTLY THE SAME AS EVERY OTHER FPS GAME ON PC.

What the fuck?


The review is for Bioshock on xbox 360 icon_wink.gif

#14
Utttand4

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QUOTE (KronicDown @ Apr 18 2008, 04:44 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Plasmids can be toggled with the function (f-number) keys.

I know that, but what i want to be able to do is use the power with a hotkey instead of changing weapon and hitting fire.
QUOTE (Jarett @ Feb 17 2008, 08:41 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think console shooters suck balls.

#15
DethFanatic

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QUOTE (Utttand4 @ Apr 18 2008, 09:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I know that, but what i want to be able to do is use the power with a hotkey instead of changing weapon and hitting fire.


So for you, a game which challenges you in some way is frustrating?

#16
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I loved the game.... Had to play it twice...

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#17
Utttand4

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QUOTE (DethFanatic @ Apr 18 2008, 07:53 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
So for you, a game which challenges you in some way is frustrating?

The point is, why implement such an awkward control style when there have been much better alternatives used by previous games.

Also, Bioshock is not a challenging game, quite far from it actually. I definitely wont mind playing through Bioshock, its just that there are much better things i can spend $50 on.
QUOTE (Jarett @ Feb 17 2008, 08:41 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think console shooters suck balls.

#18
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QUOTE (Utttand4 @ Apr 18 2008, 10:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The point is, why implement such an awkward control style when there have been much better alternatives used by previous games.

Also, Bioshock is not a challenging game, quite far from it actually. I definitely wont mind playing through Bioshock, its just that there are much better things i can spend $50 on.


I never said it was challenging, but obviously you are challenged by the 'awkward' controls. Meh, the controls were great for me, and I thought they were quite fluent and easy to navigate.

#19
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good review.. i might buy this game but i have just spent over 300 on games for pc xbox and wii...
look like the sorta game that can b fun but there are gay bits were if u die u have to go milage back to start agen.

#20
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QUOTE (Utttand4 @ Apr 18 2008, 09:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I know that, but what i want to be able to do is use the power with a hotkey instead of changing weapon and hitting fire.


Ah I see what you mean.

Yeah, I suppose that would've been handy, I certainly did find it awkward changing from Plasmid to weapon and back. That said, I didn't find the controls so atrocious that it turned me off the game, it was just a little nuance I eventually got over.

Also, there was always the shift key to bring up the plasmid/weapon selection if you needed to break the action while finding the ability you needed icon_razz.gif




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