|
Your continuous donations keep RPGWatch running!
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » Games Reviews & Comments » BioShock

Default BioShock

March 15th, 2008, 11:45
After your plane crashes into icy uncharted waters, you discover a rusted bathysphere and descend into Rapture, a city hidden beneath the sea. Constructed as an idealistic society for a hand picked group of scientists, artists and industrialists, the idealism is no more. Now the city is littered with corpses, wildly powerful guardians roam the corridors as little girls loot the dead, and genetically mutated citizens ambush you at every turn. BioShock forces you to question the lengths to which you will go and how much of your humanity you will sacrifice…to save your own life.

Features:
  • Take control of your world by hacking mechanical devices, commandeering security turrets and crafting unique items critical to your very survival.
  • Upgrade your weapons with ionic gels, explosives and toxins to customize them to the enemy and environment.
  • Genetically modify your body through dozens of Plasmid Stations scattered throughout the city, empowering you with fantastic and often grotesque abilities.
  • Explore a living world powered by Ecological A.I., where the inhabitants have interesting and consequential relationships with one another that impact your gameplay experience.
  • Experience truly next generation graphics that vividly illustrate the forlorn art deco city, highlighted by the most detailed and realistic water effects ever developed in a video game.
  • Make meaningful choices and mature decisions, ultimately culminating in the grand question: do you exploit the innocent survivors of Rapture or save them?
More information.

Computer n. A machine which flawlessly performs the instructions it is given, no matter how flawed those instructions may be.
Myrthos is offline

Myrthos

Myrthos's Avatar
Cave Canem
Super Moderator
RPGWatch Team

#1

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 3,860

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 11:45
I've finally been able to play BioShock periodically during the last couple weeks. I don't think I'm very far into it yet (only recently found the grenade launcher).

All in all, I like it but have mixed feelings about it. The setting, music and sound, basically the entire art direction is simply fantastic!

But the gameplay? Meh. As others on this forum have previously stated, compared to System Shock, which was already relatively light in regard to RPG elements but at least had some, Bioshock offers nothing. Not even remotely. At its heart, it's just a basic shooter. (Yes, I knew it was, but had hoped for something more.)

Sure, you have plasmids, but given that you can switch them out anytime at one of those stations, they are just gimmicks and there are really no choices to be made. Death is a non-issue. Had they offered "unified ammo", I wouldn't have been surprised, because it makes no difference either way.
All that considered, in terms of gameplay it isn't much different from Serious Sam as far as I'm concerned. A bit more sophisticated, sure, but still, it's pretty much the same.


But oh, the game could have been so much more! Just imagine, for a second, the incredible engine and setting of Bioshock with the possibilities, character options and gameplay choices from VtM: Bloodlines.

But maybe it's like with all those fancy looking shooters, they spend so much time on developing an awesome engine that there's no time left to actually make more out of it than just that, a fancy looking shooter.

"Mystery is important. To know everything, to know the whole truth, is dull. There is no magic in that. Magic is not knowing, magic is wondering about what and how and where." ~ Cortez, from The Longest Journey
Arhu is offline

Arhu

Arhu's Avatar
Feline Wizard
RPGWatch Team

#2

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 2,279

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 12:19
Originally Posted by Arhu View Post
All that considered, in terms of gameplay it isn't much different from Serious Sam as far as I'm concerned. A bit more sophisticated, sure, but still, it's pretty much the same.
Huh? Serious Sam? That game wasn't about being a base shooter with an emphasis on an integrated story, but instead about simplistic gameplay and waves afters waves of enemies. I can see the rest of your points, but you utterly lost me at Serious Sam (which I thoroughly enjoyed for its' mindlessness, btw)

— Mike
txa1265 is online now

txa1265

txa1265's Avatar
SasqWatch

#3

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Corning, NY USA
Posts: 11,269

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 13:04
Heh, ok, I figured that comparison was a bit weird. As I said, the atmosphere in Bioshock, the integrated story thing and so on are fantastic. I do enjoy all of that a lot, that's actually what makes me go back to the game and play. To experience the setting. But I don't go back to experience the actual gameplay.

Serious Sam is, to me, the epitome of fun but mindless shooting. Compared to that, Bioshock does have more to offer, and what it does, it does great. But to me, it doesn't feel as if there's a point to the gameplay. The apparent choices you can make feel meaningless to me, because they have no real effect on gameplay other than killing stuff. Why have them at all? To give an illusion of choice? If so, it doesn't work for me.

I wasn't trying to discern the qualities and merits of different shooters, I was only putting both Serious Sam and Bioshock in the same generic "shooter box" with no RPG elements at all, and compared that to shooter RPGs like System Shock, Deus Ex 1 and VtM: Bloodlines. Gameplay in those games did feel meaningful.

Or, well, maybe I'm just jaded and spoiled by those three so that I can't enjoy the normal process of shooting as much as I used to.

"Mystery is important. To know everything, to know the whole truth, is dull. There is no magic in that. Magic is not knowing, magic is wondering about what and how and where." ~ Cortez, from The Longest Journey
Last edited by Arhu; March 15th, 2008 at 13:26.
Arhu is offline

Arhu

Arhu's Avatar
Feline Wizard
RPGWatch Team

#4

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 2,279

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 15:39
I had to put this one down after about four hours of play. It just wasn't worth my time. It looked very cool and definitely had possibilities but, in the end, meh…

If you're not living on the edge, you take up too much room.
StackSmasher is offline

StackSmasher

StackSmasher's Avatar
Crazy UNIX guy

#5

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Saint Louis, MO USA
Posts: 63

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 18:23
Originally Posted by StackSmasher View Post
I had to put this one down after about four hours of play. It just wasn't worth my time. It looked very cool and definitely had possibilities but, in the end, meh…
Did you play the demo, pay $50 or pirate it? Just curious … because it seems that Bioshock was a game that was so heavily covered and had a demo that buying and being surprised by gameplay doesn't make sense.

— Mike
txa1265 is online now

txa1265

txa1265's Avatar
SasqWatch

#6

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Corning, NY USA
Posts: 11,269

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 21:07
Originally Posted by StackSmasher View Post
I had to put this one down after about four hours of play. It just wasn't worth my time. It looked very cool and definitely had possibilities but, in the end, meh…
What, you needed to play through half the game to figure that out?
VPeric is offline

VPeric

Sentinel

#7

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Serbia
Posts: 580

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 22:16
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
Did you play the demo, pay $50 or pirate it? Just curious … because it seems that Bioshock was a game that was so heavily covered and had a demo that buying and being surprised by gameplay doesn't make sense.
I actually traded my second copy of the Unreal Tournament 3 Collector's Edition (don't ask ) for a friends retail box of BioShock when he was done playing it. For whatever reason I hadn't really paid any attention to the press on this game. I had no idea that it was supposed to be the 'Spiritual Successor' to the Shock games until my friend told me about it and we arranged the trade…

If you're not living on the edge, you take up too much room.
StackSmasher is offline

StackSmasher

StackSmasher's Avatar
Crazy UNIX guy

#8

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Saint Louis, MO USA
Posts: 63

Default 

March 15th, 2008, 22:22
Originally Posted by VPeric View Post
What, you needed to play through half the game to figure that out?
Well, I really wanted to like it but after awhile I found I was trying to make myself like it and that's when the magic was over. And, yeah, I'm a little slow sometimes

If you're not living on the edge, you take up too much room.
StackSmasher is offline

StackSmasher

StackSmasher's Avatar
Crazy UNIX guy

#9

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Saint Louis, MO USA
Posts: 63

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 09:08
I never had to try to make myself like Bioshock, it was a great game ….nuff said.

On a side note…SS2 was still much better.
JDR13 is offline

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch

#10

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 16,927

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 09:32
And the original SS better than either, IMHO!!

If God said it, then that settles it!!

Editor@RPGWatch
Corwin is offline

Corwin

Corwin's Avatar
On The Razorblade of Life
RPGWatch Team

#11

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 10,248
Send a message via Skype™ to Corwin

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 11:23
Originally Posted by Corwin View Post
And the original SS better than either, IMHO!!
Agreed. Although I didn't manage to finish it due to one horribly hard fight I just couldnt win with what ammo I had left. But it was a great experience to that point. How I loved laying traps with mines…

Bioshock - I liked it, but haven't finished it yet, Witcher got in the way. It is a great example of what shooters should be, IMHO. But of course it ain't a RPG or even a hybrid.
GhanBuriGhan is offline

GhanBuriGhan

GhanBuriGhan's Avatar
Wose extraordinaire

#12

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 3,449

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 11:36
I haven't finished, either. It would be unkind to say I got bored but I wandered off and played something else and haven't come back to it. It's stylish as hell but something about the combat doesn't feel quite right (too fast for me? Sorry can't explain it better) and the Little Sisters thing just did zippo for me. Too many meaningful choices were ripped out but I do plan to go back to it.

-= RPGWatch =-
Dhruin is offline

Dhruin

Dhruin's Avatar
Watcher
Super Moderator
RPGWatch Team

#13

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 11,964

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 15:43
The game is incidental to the experience. The FPS aspect did nothing for me (playing on "easy" may have had an impact) and the story, while interesting, provided little motivation. The selling point of Bioshock was the atmosphere—places and people within them. I don't generally do "immersion" but Bioshock was immersive. Underwater city…immersive…I'm such a hack.

Sorry. No pearls of wisdom in this oyster.
Dallas Cowboys: *sigh* / / Detroit Red Wings: Took injuries to see them, but how about them youngsters!
dteowner is offline

dteowner

dteowner's Avatar
Shoegazer

#14

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Indiana, USA
Posts: 11,197

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 20:23
Mm, yup, I'm with dte on this one, which might help explain my experience / reservation.

"Mystery is important. To know everything, to know the whole truth, is dull. There is no magic in that. Magic is not knowing, magic is wondering about what and how and where." ~ Cortez, from The Longest Journey
Arhu is offline

Arhu

Arhu's Avatar
Feline Wizard
RPGWatch Team

#15

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 2,279

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 20:46
Originally Posted by GhanBuriGhan View Post
Bioshock - I liked it, but haven't finished it yet, Witcher got in the way. It is a great example of what shooters should be, IMHO. But of course it ain't a RPG or even a hybrid.
How do you figure that Bioshock isn't even a hybrid??
JDR13 is offline

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch

#16

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 16,927

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 20:48
Originally Posted by dteowner View Post
The game is incidental to the experience. The FPS aspect did nothing for me (playing on "easy" may have had an impact) and the story, while interesting, provided little motivation. The selling point of Bioshock was the atmosphere—places and people within them. I don't generally do "immersion" but Bioshock was immersive. Underwater city…immersive…I'm such a hack.
dteowner, you really have to play Bioshock on "medium" at least to get a fun challenge out of it. Bump it up a notch the next time you play it.
JDR13 is offline

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch

#17

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 16,927

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 20:52
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
dteowner, you really have to play Bioshock on "medium" at least to get a fun challenge out of it. Bump it up a notch the next time you play it.
I started out on medium, but after a couple hours decided that there was no point (for me) and I'd rather just experience the atmosphere and setting, so I went dte's route.

"Mystery is important. To know everything, to know the whole truth, is dull. There is no magic in that. Magic is not knowing, magic is wondering about what and how and where." ~ Cortez, from The Longest Journey
Arhu is offline

Arhu

Arhu's Avatar
Feline Wizard
RPGWatch Team

#18

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 2,279

Default 

March 16th, 2008, 22:07
I suck rocks at FPS, JDR. Upping the difficulty would have just upped the irritation. I got a good experience for my money, so playing at the gimp setting worked just fine for me. I'd highly recommend Bioshock to a friend as long as they have the right expectations going in .

As far as Dhruin's point, since you could collect (and use with equal effect) every plasmid, every tonic, and every weapon by the end of the game, there's not really much to the character development. The "stealth boy" approach didn't seem very viable, so you're pretty much locked into a kill-em-all paradigm, which means there's not much variation in your role. A single story branch does not choices make. That's three huge strikes against calling Bioshock an FPS/RPG hybrid. Doesn't make it a bad game, though.

Sorry. No pearls of wisdom in this oyster.
Dallas Cowboys: *sigh* / / Detroit Red Wings: Took injuries to see them, but how about them youngsters!
dteowner is offline

dteowner

dteowner's Avatar
Shoegazer

#19

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Indiana, USA
Posts: 11,197

Default 

March 17th, 2008, 01:53
Not sure I agree 100% about the hybrid thing, although I guess I understand your veiw. I don't think story branches or whether or not you get to use every upgrade in one playthrough have anything to do with that. Definitely more FPS than anything else though yes.
JDR13 is offline

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch

#20

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 16,927
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » Games Reviews & Comments » BioShock
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 10:44.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright by RPGWatch