The original Bioshock was released on august 21st 2007(October 17th 2008 for PS3) by Irrational Games (as Digital Extremes for the PS3 version) and has since become synonymous with the name Ken Levine. For those of you who don't know, Ken Levine is the co-founder of Irrational Games and led the creation of Bioshock. Bioshock released to much critical acclaim winning multiple awards including the 2007 BAFTA best game award, Game Informers 2007 game of the year award, Spike TV's 2007 best game award and the Xplay's 2007 game of the year award. However Bioshock 2 was given to 2K Marin. While 2K did a good job it didn't receive nearly as much praise as the original. Now with Ken Levine back behind the wheel will Bioshock infinite sink to the depths of rapture or fly to the heights of Columbia.
Bioshock infinite takes place in the city of Columbia in the year 1912.A very different city then that of the original Bioshock in some ways and also very similar. Originally there was Rapture, a huge city built under the ocean to be an isolated utopia. Now we have Columbia, a huge city flying above the clouds connected by a sort of rail way system also built to be an isolated utopia. The differences don't stop there but I’ll let you see them for yourself. While the two cities may look vastly different what's happening in Columbia feels all too familiar.
You play as Booker DeWitt, a former Pinkerton agent. Booker has some money problems and to settle his debt's he's charged with finding a young girl named Elizabeth and bringing her back to New York. Unfortunately Elizabeth is being held in Columbia, a place Booker doesn't even know exists until he arrives there.
Once Booker arrives in Columbia you will be introduced to all types of weapons including handguns, assault/sniper rifles, RPGs and your trusty Sky hook. The Sky hook will be used for doing terrible, terrible things to your foes and also it’s your key to getting around Columbia. Your Sky hook will attach to the rails of Columbia letting you move from place to place. While in Columbia you will be introduced to Vigor's. Vigor's are the plasmids (Bioshock 1 & 2) of Bioshock infinite. You can Equip 2 different Vigor's at any time but to change them you have to hold L2 to bring up a menu of options for what vigor's you want to equip. Vigor's will let you do some very cool things like send a murder of crows out to attack your enemies or knocking them into the air making them float helplessly while you do what you wish to them. I'm not going to go into detail on all the different types of vigor's so that you can enjoy them for yourself but there are lots of different ways to combine them, like by sending out a murder of crows to attack your foes then lighting said crows on fire. With all the different weapons and vigor's and the combinations of them there's sure to be a weapon that fits your play style. Finding ammo for some weapons can sometimes be tricky just after a major battle luckily once you meet Elizabeth she will search the area for ammo, health money and salts (needed for using your Vigor's) and throw them to you. This comes in handy mid fight. I couldn't tell you how many times I ran out of ammo or salt with my favorite weapon or vigor only to be restocked by Elizabeth.
Bioshock infinite does an amazing job with the audio. From the start to the finish characters express their emotion in their voice which is something not all games can do well. The voice actors chosen to play Booker and Elizabeth are fantastic and I couldn't imagine any other voice that would suit them. The different guns give off realistic sounds from the BOOM of the shotgun to the POP POP of the handgun. The same goes for reloading, sliding that clip in and hearing it click tells you you’re good to start firing again. The music of Bioshock infinite should have its own album. While they created their own original pieces that are great they also use music pulled straight from our world. If you listen to the radios you might hear "Everyone wants to rule the world" by Tears for Fears or while wandering around you might come across a barbershop quartet singing the Beach Boys "God only knows". If you’re lucky enough to have a set of Sony pulse elite edition headset there's even a custom audio setting you can download for Bioshock infinite. This custom setting is not just for making the game sound better; it makes it feel better too. The pulse headset's have little motor like things in the ear cups that pulse in different ways to different things. In call of duty if there's an explosion you feel it through the ear cups. With Bioshock infinite and its custom pulse headset settings the shooting from the different guns gives different pulses in your headset. While this sounds gimmicky it really does pull you into the game more and I love it! Speaking of being pulled into the game I feel I should mention that Bioshock infinite also supports the move controls to further pull you in to the Bioshock world. I truly believe any decent game coming out on PS3 or PS4 should take advantage of the custom settings for pulse headsets so players feel more engulfed by their game.
The graphics in Bioshock infinite are good....on PS3. If you have a gaming computer and need games to look as good as possible you want the PC version. I don't own a gaming PC but I have seen it running on one and it blows all the console versions out of the water. This does not mean that the PS3 version looks bad just not what it could be. Still, colors are rich and vibrant with almost no dull looking areas at all. I’ve heard some complaints that the characters look cartoonish and fake from a very small number of people but you have to realize that's the art direction the game chose to take. I'm sure they could have made character models that looked more real but I feel like it just wouldn't fit with the world Bioshock takes place in.
Overall Bioshock infinite is a great game that any fan of the series should already own. With its great game play, long story, plenty of places to explore and its 1999 mode (think of it as hardcore mode. less ammo, less life, more damage) most players should be able to get their money's worth out of this game.