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Bioshock Infinite - Editorial @ Gamasutra

by Couchpotato, 2014-01-14 05:21:09

Gamasutra has a new blog post about the opportunities lost for Bioshock Infinite.

One of the biggest problems with Bioshock Infinite is that the writers did not develop a thematically focused narrative. This moves beyond an editing issue and really gets to the heart of good design and writing. Strong narratives have a central, core concept. All other aspects of the narrative, from motifs to characters, should support that concept in order to give a structural unity to the story. In order to analyze Bioshock Infinite and its narrative, we have to consider: 

  1. American nationalism/patriotism
  2. Racism
  3. Quantum mechanics and the Many Worlds theory
  4. Social unrest and the underclass
  5. The corruption of power
  6.  Religion and religious fundamentalism

It is obvious that there is too much going on for a single narrative, even in a 16 hour game, to make coherent. However, add to that the fact that the main story is the personal history of Dewitt and Elizabeth and yes, you have narrative mayhem. Creating narrative driven games is difficult, and I fully realize the enormity of the undertaking, so the team of Bioshock Infinite deserves a lot of credit for even daring to include some of these issues in a major title. The criticism in this essay is undertaken in an effort to improve my understanding of game design and perhaps the field itself.

Information about

Bioshock Infinite

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Historical
Genre: Shooter-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released