Developed by the folks over at 2K Boston and published by 2K Games in 2007, BioShock is downloadable epic first-person shooter game, It features a narrative inspired by books and cinema as well as featuring a level of polish and imagination that made it a standout title of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 era of consoles.
To start downloading BioShock click on the Download button placed at the end of the review. The game can be obtained from Steam. There is also a free demo which you can download before committing to the purchase of the full game. Last but not least, there is also the 2016 Remastered version. Definitley worth checking out as well.
Led by Ken Levine, the team presents a dystopian world underneath the sea that is underpinned by Randian ideals of society as well as vague hints at social Darwinism and the tenets that bolstered some of the worst ideologies of the 20th century. Designed using an inspired take on the art deco era, BioShock’s underwater environs are lovingly crafted to convey not only a sense of mood and aura but of intangible presence.
The society crafted beneath the sea becomes its own character even in its derelict state and it is how the player interacts with this fallen order that determines much of the course of the game.
Employing an innovative morality system that wagered increased power or a more moral approach to the in-game world, BioShock’s emergent gameplay as a litmus test for a gamer’s personality is interesting if not somewhat clumsily implemented in hindsight. As video games often preference power over other options it is quite difficult to gain some kind of moral insight into a gamer who just wants to play the game to its fullest. After all, Mario does not turn down power-ups so why should your character in BioShock?
The big daddies and little sisters that form the crux of this system offer some insight into this. In order to become more powerful, the player has to literally drain the life force of a little sister and must defeat her big daddy protector in order to do this.
Naturally, you’re not the only person to do this as much of the in-game world has descended into chaos because people are abusing this power. Then there is the city of Rapture itself, a constricted though an entirely explorable area that, like the society of Rapture, takes on a guise all its own.
The fate of Rapture ostensibly rests in the player’s hands but one cannot help but feel that this course is already being guided by someone else, making the player less an active participant and more like a pawn. Lauded for its multi-layered story and varied approach to challenges in the game, BioShock stands as a powerful testament to the ability of first-person shooter games to tell stories and build vast, rich worlds.
Now a common feature in many games, the original BioShock contains a lot of role-playing game elements as well as basic puzzle solving and exploration. There is a lot to see in Rapture but there is also a lot of danger. Making sure you are properly prepared for the challenges ahead is as much a part of BioShock’s general spirit as the rest of it is. Players expecting a guns blazing approach to taking out enemies in BioShock will be disappointed by the start-stop heave of the game’s general tempo.