Excerpt: One of this year’s biggest game releases is finally out in the wild, and while the game has been with us a few weeks now, it gives me great pleasure to be able to finally sit down and enjoy it, but with so much hype and anticipation prior to the games release, has it lived up to the expectations of the games hardcore fans, not to mention the desires of a new generation of gamers who may never have played the first two games in the series?
Summary: Its characterization and environments are as beautiful as its dystopian setting is disturbing and, at times, racist. You owe it to yourself to play this game all the way through, if for nothing else than the hours you’ll spend debating its merits (if not its ending) with your gamer friends. The world of BioShock doesn’t get much better than this.
Pros: Excellent pacing; wonderful character development; a story you’ll spend hours talking about; barbershop quartet.
Cons: Combat can feel a bit uninspired if not downright easy (save for the game’s final mission); linear.
Excerpt: The last mainstream first-person game we played that had no multiplayer modes stuck on for good measure was Dishonored, and you may remember that it was very well received. Now we have BioShock Infinite, a game whose only aspiration is to submerge your head in a charged ocean of suspense, complex perspectives, and unforgettably weird imagery.
Excerpt: Columbia, Bioshock Infinite ’s floating city in the sky, is a vividly imagined place, a marriage of impossible engineering and incredible artistry. Its buildings sway amongst the clouds buoyed atop huge zeppelins of air; its streets are lined with rose gardens, picnics, statues of the founding fathers and candy floss stalls; and its population is drunk on the religious and xenophobic preachings of its founder and self-styled prophet, Zachary Comstock.
Conclusion: Prior to playing BioShock Infinite , I was wondering if the floating city would seem as realistic as the underwater Utopia of Rapture. Yes, it is quite easy to believe a city could survive underwater in an airtight environment, but one floating in the sky? But the wonderful storyline and the memorable characters help to make the unbelievable believable. Despite the change in scenery, Columbia still exhibits the BioShock feel that was evident in Rapture.
Pros: The story, the location and the characters make Columbia believable. Gameplay is pure BioShock with some great new abilities.
Cons: It took me a short while to adjust to the weapons/vigor mouse controls
Conclusion: Bioshock Infinite is on par with most of its contemporaries. The original Bioshock’s combat was clunky even by 2007 standards, so it’s good to see the series take such a strong leap forward. However, while I appreciate the stress-free aspects of not needing to constantly tend to Elizabeth, there could have been more interaction between her and Booker in combat to deepen their relationship.
Excerpt: BioShock Infinite aims so damn high – fittingly, since its alternate-reality 1912 city of Columbia literally floats atop clouds – that it’s a wonder it successfully hits any of its lofty goals at all. But it does hit them, again and again. A stunning original world of retro-sci-fi technology and gorgeous scenery. A cast of fully fleshed-out, memorable characters who deliver real emotional impact. A great villain and a greater monster.
Excerpt: BioShock Infinite is a rare game that dares to challenge its audience with important (and controversial) themes that enhance the science fiction-fueled story in a genius, non-intrusive way. It’s a sequel that takes everything that works about the previous entries and molds them into something that feels distinct without compromising what made it so memorable in the first place.