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View Full Version : BioShock, Pt. 3 -- the rest of the game


Parish
08-22-2007, 12:24 AM
Save all your sexy late-game spoilers for here, won't you? Thanks, you're a peach.

Niku
08-22-2007, 11:36 PM
Would you kindly discuss with me how, despite the Atlas reveal being pretty obvious, the way it was handled was pretty goddamn fantastic?

I can't figure out how to get into the locked door to go upstairs in Sander Cohen's apartment. Is there anything good up there? It's the only room I haven't gone to in that area.

I'm still wrenching it up. Also, I've fully researched everything but Rosie, and yet .. I still don't have the Prolific Photographer achievement. Is this thing bugged?

I've got the CRAZY PLASMID affliction right now, but it's kinda cool!

k.

ahnslaught
08-23-2007, 12:22 AM
Just got to Prometheus, and I totally agree that the whole Ryan/Atlas/You meeting was completely amazing. I really thought I was getting to the end at that point. Probably one of the greatest moments in a game I've ever seen, for sure. The main story clicks together right there, and it's handled perfectly, and sure made me feel like a goat.

I'm playing the game as a hacker, hacking everything in sight. I also hooked up the tonics that give health and eve for hacking, and the plasmids that I'm using all the time are telekinesis, electricity, and enrage, and tossing in insects and cyclone traps. The other slots are for the leftovers which I change out often.

Curiously, the only time I really use the weapons is when I fight Big Daddys; the skills I have usually let me sit by the wayside and watch, or take random potshots while enemies are fighting each other or turrets.

Savathun
08-23-2007, 02:19 AM
I'm really bummed that none of the monsters were in the game that I thought there'd be. I shouldn't have looked at the concept art book. I was expecting jellyfish men and people whose ribs opened wide like a venus flytrap.

*ENDING DISCUSSION HERE, ALL RIGHTY*







I guess I see why they did it, though. It makes God Atlus a lot more disturbing than he'd otherwise be.

Got the Sister Savior ending, as well.

Ben1842
08-23-2007, 05:21 AM
Well I beat it and it was awesome. I got the "happy ending" but I watched the other on youtube since I didn't want to play all over again for like 2 mins.


Over all I loved the game. Good length, fun story, very different.

The only thing I didn't like was the escort bit. Also I never really used some of the powers. ex. bee power, cross bow, flame thrower etc...

Maybe that was just my approach.

Any way Loved it and now I can get back to my review show lol

unless for some reason Jeanne D' Arc is so awesome that I can't be bothered. (eh I still get it done)


Gratz to all who finished it

Ben1842
08-23-2007, 05:32 AM
The worst thing about Bioshock was the god awful moby CD that came with my preorder. Giving that away is like asking people not to preorder.






PS. Moby sucks

PPS. would have rather had some of the samples of the music from the game. (all 30's style)

Jakanden
08-23-2007, 01:18 PM
Just finished it with the "Evil" ending. Goddamn this game was awesome and I think the "Game of the year" title might indeed be appropriate. This is the first FPS in a long time that I almost immediately want to go through and play it again.

However, I am going to take a break as I clocked in about 20 hours in less than 3 days on this thing. I got 41 out of 50 achievements and would have gotten 43 had I known about the little sisters saving achievement and gotten about 3 more pictures of turrets for the PhD photo one.

Francis
08-23-2007, 02:07 PM
Would you kindly discuss with me how, despite the Atlas reveal being pretty obvious, the way it was handled was pretty goddamn fantastic?

I can't figure out how to get into the locked door to go upstairs in Sander Cohen's apartment. Is there anything good up there? It's the only room I haven't gone to in that area.

I'm still wrenching it up. Also, I've fully researched everything but Rosie, and yet .. I still don't have the Prolific Photographer achievement. Is this thing bugged?

I've got the CRAZY PLASMID affliction right now, but it's kinda cool!

k.

You need to leave Cohen alive to get up there. There's a Power to the People station (yeah, that makes sense) and that's about it.

Crazy Plasmid is pretty neat in that it gives you that chance to try out all the plasmids that you weren't sure were worth the money. I wish it happened earlier in the game.

Honestly, I'm really disappointed in the title, and the technical/DRM issues certainly don't help. I was expecting CoH-level creativity with the plasmid powers and got a handful of energy bolts and some handy mind-control abilities. Aside from bees, honestly very generic.

Same with the enemy selection: the five splicer species all kind of blend together (except for the first time you encounter houdinis). The bosses are just reskinned generic splicers for the most part (seeing Atlas reuse the AI routines from the very first Bouncer made me very sad) and while the so-called Ecological AI does some neat things when splicers are alone or interact with each other, the combat AI is dumb as dirt. Generally, when the AI does something relatively complex like run to a health station or douse itself in water, the effect is more beneficial to the player than if the AI stood and shot at me instead. With the limited number of enemy types and poor AI, the only way the game manages to be difficult in late-game normal and mid-to-late-game Hard is by giving them absurd amounts of health and near-immunity to much of your arsenal. This, frankly, sucks.

Finally, while I love the art deco look and the way the general environmental design is presented, the general theme-park atmosphere of power-up stations littered everywhere and in the most inappropriate locations constantly breaks immersion. While a libertarian bubble-city is probably the only possible environment where proximity mines and machine gun ammo can plausibly be sold via vending machine, I cannot fathom why one would be in what is supposed to be someone's apartment.

While it's an interesting game and I'm glad I played it, I don't think it's near polished enough to be considered any kind of Game of the Year.

Ben1842
08-23-2007, 03:47 PM
While I do agree with some of your statements (lack of enemy types, lame AI). I think that this game most certainly should be at least considered for game of the year. Because Despite all those flaws, The main thing is that you have fun. I found this game to be very fun and an interesting new look at a tired genre.

GOTY should = What you had fun playing
GOTY should not = Which game was the most technicaly impressive in all areas.


If you do judge by tech then reviews are more like consumer reports than reviews of the "art" or "playability" of a game.

I don't go see movies because they have the best effects (for the most part). I go to see the stories. In video games a good story can be few and far between.

This game should be rewarded for at least giving it a shot.

Savathun
08-23-2007, 03:52 PM
I ended up using the crossbow a lot. That thing's crazy powerful. And I loved the museum level. It was very surreal and unsettling. Especially when the kids keep referring to you as Mr. Bubbles. Hoo boy.

I probably need to replay the game so I can get more of the plot that I missed before. There are still a few things I think I'm not quite clear on.

And I'm still really dissapointed there weren't any real monsters except for the one.

Jakanden
08-23-2007, 04:19 PM
I am not disappointed in the lack of "monsters" as that isn't what the game was really focused on. The fact that everyone (for the most part) was human, lent to the atmosphere and made the story of a failed objectivist society more believable.

I didn't start using the crossbow until the second to the last level and I wish I had done so sooner. You are right as that thing is wicked powerful and the trip wires can make for some interesting fights. I will explore that more on my second play-through.

Stiv
08-23-2007, 04:55 PM
I'm really bummed that none of the monsters were in the game that I thought there'd be. I shouldn't have looked at the concept art book. I was expecting jellyfish men and people whose ribs opened wide like a venus flytrap.

Sure you're not thinking of back when the game was set on an island, starring Nazi scientists?

Just finished the encounter with Ryan and holy shit. I'd known that you were his son since Neptune's Bounty (thanks, tape that said only people with Ryan's genetic material could use the bathyspheres) but god bless 'em for putting in some more information to explain both how the Vita-Chambers work and, best of all, why you do what you're told when you otherwise might not.

Savathun
08-23-2007, 05:00 PM
I was just mostly going by the little concept pictures I'd seen during development and in that little PDF art book. It's definitely true that the mainly human characters worked to the story's benefit, I just couldn't really appreciate it because I came into the game expecting and hoping for monsters, so I was mostly just waiting for them to show up.

And would you kindly clear a few things up for me? From what I understand, Ryan pumped out pheremones so that he could control the splicers? Did that not work for everyone, thus allowing for the uprising, or what? And DID he ever set up the plasmids so that the more people splice, the more addicted to it they became? It sounded like he was toying with the idea, but wasn't sold on it.

If these seem like obvious questions, well.. I was playing this game on my brother's 360, and one of his friends was in there at the time, drunk off his ass and talking loudly on the phone, so I couldn't hear all the dialogue.

Niku
08-23-2007, 05:01 PM
I just started my second playthrough, this time on hard. My goals for this one: Get all the weapon power-ups for the achievement (I killed Sander Cohen because the chest was sparkly. SPARKLY), minimal wrench usage, kill Sander Cohen and take a photo of his corpse for an achievement and then reload my game, and save all the Little Sisters (I got the bad ending). The Historian / Tonic achievements, I'm leaving my Normal difficulty save open so I can look down a checklist for the missing ones once there's one available.

I'm a little disappointed with how abrupt the ending was after beating Fontaine. I guess all the back and forth between him and Tenenbaum and the radio entry about organs being wired into the big daddy suits made me want to see if Protagonist would be stuck like a Big Daddy forever. Still, the game's good enough that I started my second playthrough fifteen minutes after the end of the first, so. Minor complaint.

GOOD GUY PLAYTHROUGH GO

Jakanden
08-23-2007, 05:01 PM
I thought that entire scene was well done. I REALLY dug the voice acting of Atlas/Fontaine in that scene as well. I don't know why, but his acting in that scene sticks out the most of the entire game for me.

Savathun
08-23-2007, 06:26 PM
I kind of wish Atlas had kept the accent all the way through. When he changed to generic grifter or whatever, it just started feeling like it wasn't even the same person, so it lessened the effect of it a bit.

And yeah, I was wondering about the Big Daddy thing, too. He says "You think becoming one of those things is a two way street!?" and there's that weird voice changing thing. God knows how exactly it did what it did.

Niku
08-23-2007, 07:12 PM
I kind of wish Atlas had kept the accent all the way through. When he changed to generic grifter or whatever, it just started feeling like it wasn't even the same person, so it lessened the effect of it a bit.


Seconded so hard. Just because that accent is awesome. Fistful o' loightnin' indeed.

Stiv
08-24-2007, 03:27 AM
Finished! Somehow I got the 'evil' ending even though I saved more than I harvested - I guess if you let any Little Sisters die in the museum it counts against your overall 'score'. Disappointing! I don't see much of a benefit to harvesting anyway; a lot of the upgrades aren't useful until late in the game, when you start picking up better versions anyway. Also you get the Secure Shell 2 plasmid if you save enough Little Sisters and that's reason enough to do it.

I've got to agree that the AI is kind of goofy, and the fight against Atlas is completely lame - the AI is reasonably adaptive and it does a pretty good job of how an insane person might behave. Take note, game developers: You can explain away AI aberrations with your story!

The part where you need to turn into a Big Daddy though - AWESOME. The 'education center' for the Little Sisters was by far the creepiest shit in the game, moreso because that whole area looks pretty undamaged compared to the rest of the city.

Andrew
08-24-2007, 06:54 AM
The part where you need to turn into a Big Daddy though - AWESOME. The 'education center' for the Little Sisters was by far the creepiest shit in the game, moreso because that whole area looks pretty undamaged compared to the rest of the city.

Yeah, that area was great. Especially the hilarious posters (so *that's* why they've been calling them "angels"). The following area where the LS you protect still feels compelled to harvest Adam from the dead test subjects (after all, all good girls harvest!) helped me sympathize way more with them.

I had a good idea something was damn fishy with Atlas, however I just thought he was McDonough.

PhoenixUltima
08-24-2007, 08:36 AM
What's even more awesome about becoming a big daddy is that you can then go back through the other levels and all the splicers will just ignore you, since they think you're a BD and you don't have a little sister with you (or at least most will; some of the prescripted enemies may still attack you, though by that point in the game there probably aren't a lot of those left). Makes exploring for lost shit (like oh say THOSE FUCKING DIARIES) a lot easier.

What's not awesome is that even though you sound like a big daddy when you get hurt or attack, you still make your normal human grunting sound when you jump. Also not awesome is that damned helmet obscuring your peripheral vision, though I guess it'd be dumb if you could see perfectly in it.

poetfox
08-24-2007, 09:04 AM
Why would a museum be called "Proving Grounds"? That's the one area name that bothered me. That seems way to... video-gamey.

Jakanden
08-24-2007, 10:54 AM
Why would a museum be called "Proving Grounds"? That's the one area name that bothered me. That seems way to... video-gamey.

My understanding is that it was where the new Big Daddy's trained and proved themselves. That was the whole reason you had to dress up like one to get in there.

Savathun
08-24-2007, 02:49 PM
Yeah, that was the impression I got, too. And I guess they just kept a few splicers cooped up in there for that purpose.

What I don't understand is how Atlas got through there so easily. Maybe they explained it in a radio conversation, but I missed it (because of the loud drunk guy I mentioned).

Niku
08-24-2007, 06:24 PM
What's not awesome is that even though you sound like a big daddy when you get hurt or attack, you still make your normal human grunting sound when you jump. Also not awesome is that damned helmet obscuring your peripheral vision, though I guess it'd be dumb if you could see perfectly in it.

Honestly, is it completely unreasonable for me to wish that they had changed the hand models for that section to Big Daddy gloves?

RE: Little Sister training facility. The part that got to me the most was the skinner machine that shocks you if you push the button underneath the normal human citizen, and gives you a bag of chips for pushing the button under the Big Daddy.

Andrew
08-24-2007, 07:36 PM
Honestly, is it completely unreasonable for me to wish that they had changed the hand models for that section to Big Daddy gloves?

No, but more importantly, WHERE WAS MY DAMN DRILL?!?!

I seem to be missing something on my Rapture Metro list of destinations. I have Medical Pavillion, Neptune's Bounty, Arcadia, Fort Frolic, Hephaestus, Apollo Square, and a blank space. Am I missing Farmer's Market?

EDIT, nevermind, it was just that I was at Point Prometheus and it doesn't show up on the list because of that.

Figure Four
08-24-2007, 11:10 PM
RE: Little Sister training facility. The part that got to me the most was the skinner machine that shocks you if you push the button underneath the normal human citizen, and gives you a bag of chips for pushing the button under the Big Daddy.

I one hundred percent agree. Especially since it took me a second to realize what it was.

Well I just finished and the thing that impressed me is that my character actually had an arc. I started out harvesting all the little sisters, just like Atlas told me too. Then after I found out about my true nature and had to watch all the converted little sisters flee from me in terror I had a change of heart. I spent the rest of the game rescuing the remaining little sisters. This all leads up to my transformation into a Big Daddy, I've gone from devil to protector.

Too bad this doesn't jibe with the bad ending that I got. Oh well.

Eusis
08-24-2007, 11:43 PM
Man, I picked this up earlier than planned partially to participate in this entry, only to be so absorbed in the game I didn't feel like posting at all. Go fig.

Anyways, beat the game and got the good ending. As far as I know, if you harvest any Little Sisters, you'll get the bad ending, but them dying en route is apparently irrelevant, I had one die myself at that final escort mission. I thought I heard there were 3 endings, but obviously not. It would've nice for some sorta neutral-type ending, maybe the character doesn't just snap, horde up Adam and abuse(?) the Little Sisters, but takes Rapture for his own even with it falling apart. I dunno, I just would've liked some neutral ending and not simply the typical GOOD/EVIL. Also, maybe this is just a personal quirk, but I didn't like how it simply went to the title screen after the ending and didn't show a credit roll or anything. Crackdown did the same, and both times it felt unsatisfying, but Crackdown was an openended game that only barely had a story, while the plot was a large factor for Bioshock, so just to do it like that just doesn't feel right. It also fuels my crazy suspicion that 2k wants to downplay the actual developers as possible and just make it '2k product'. I suppose that's nothing really new in the game industry though.

Time for random stuff: Got the irony achievement purely by chance. I simply thought it'd be fun to photograph Cohen's body, and had notifications disabled since I got tired of random "X IS ON" notices blocking out radio/diary text, especially when it happened twice in a row on one part I was trying to read. So I had a small surprise in store for me when I checked. Despite killing him though, I found him in his apartment later on. Maybe it was because I accidentally pissed off my Big Daddy escort when I swung my wrench at Cohen prior and thus immediately got destroyed by my escort, possibly screwing up the game in the process. At the least, in addition to the whole 'he came back to life!' thing Cohen was wearing the mask he took off prior to my death. The chest was opened prior to killing him in his apartment, so unknowingly using an older save is ruled out. In fact, in revisiting Fort Frolic I got messages from him like when I got the one Tonic on the balcony. That guy just can't seem to die for me.

While the escort part was pretty obnoxious, it was a nice role reversal. It would've been nice if the little sisters could've recovered somehow though, but I only had one die on me and that was practically at the start of the second part. Also in regards to it's length, the game was perfect I think. Maybe it just wasn't as strong at the end as at the start, or maybe I was just playing through it too fast, but by the end I just wanted it over with, so at least it didn't overstay it's welcome.

The plasmids were disappointing, however. I expected a larger variety of them, and to do stuff like teleportation that I swore I saw in the "Hunting the Big Daddy" video. Maybe the character just died or they zoomed to further ahead in the video, and I got confused because of the Houdini Splicers. Instead, while there were a few novel ones like the bug swarm, enrage, and the Big Daddy hypnotizing ones, there were mostly just upgrades and Fire/Ice/Electricity are fun but not anything new. In fact, next play through I'll just skip upgrading them until they're available for cheap. I didn't really notice any benefit from using the stronger ones over weaker ones, except maybe when fighting Big Daddies. With that said, the Tonics were pretty decent with a good variety of options for different playing styles. The game definitely favored the Wrench though.

Alixsar
08-25-2007, 02:26 AM
Well, I just got to the big reveal about Atlas. This is from the first Bioshock thread but...

My working theory is that he either IS Fontaine (and he never died like everyone said) or that he was one of his pals (which I feel is pretty safe to say at the very least).

Man, it's so great being right all the time.

Savathun
08-25-2007, 02:57 AM
I just realized something that hadn't ocurred to me before.

In the scene where the three or four splicers ambush the Big Daddy and Little Sister, my first thought was "Oh, hell! I have to kill them first, then kill the Big Daddy before they take the Little Sister from me!"

And I only just now realized that... um, those splicers couldn't possibly have taken the Little Sister and done anything with it.

...Could they?

Man, this game is great.

Jakanden
08-25-2007, 05:45 AM
Time for some levity!

http://www.duelinganalogs.com/comics/2007-08-25.png

reibeatall
08-25-2007, 04:23 PM
Ok, so I'm in Proving Grounds right now, and the Little Sisters keep dying on me, so I keep reloading so that none of them die. Does this part affect the ending?

Eusis
08-25-2007, 04:25 PM
Nah, you can heave them die and get the good ending still. I mentioned in my post one died on me. The issue is whether you harvest any or not.

reibeatall
08-25-2007, 04:27 PM
Ok, cool.

I've been playing the game kinda weird. If I die, I don't let myself get revived, instead I reload my latest save. Otherwise, I get the feeling this game would get Prey-syndrome.

Guy
08-25-2007, 05:09 PM
Ok, cool.

I've been playing the game kinda weird. If I die, I don't let myself get revived, instead I reload my latest save. Otherwise, I get the feeling this game would get Prey-syndrome.


I do the exact same thing. Letting myself revive feels like cheating.

Stiv
08-25-2007, 07:24 PM
The revive mechanism is alright, it's not like Prey, which is essentially a 'you quicksave at death' thing. Reviving in some cases can be REALLY bad for you, like if you die when fighting a Big Daddy and respawn too far away - it gets to another location and heals up, and you've just tossed a bunch of ammo into it. Same goes for any enemies near an unhacked health station (and yes, they will heal up before you get back).

I started another playthrough on Hard and I'm surprised at how.. easy it is. The AI doesn't change much, and the first Big Daddy was easy to take down (even though I had to use some MAD strategy for it). Somewhat disappointing.

Eusis
08-25-2007, 08:06 PM
I did a mix, but if anything letting myself be revived was more like playing fairly. I could use up a lot of med kits to survive and it's in vain, and of course there's the Little Sister vanishing with only the Big Daddy around. Still though, the Big Daddies have always kept their damage when I did this, so I just returned and stalked him until he got a little sister out, then kicked his ass.

Ben1842
08-25-2007, 09:31 PM
and the first Big Daddy was easy to take down (even though I had to use some MAD strategy for it).


I don't get it, Isn't using good strategy and winning the sign of good game play?

To me if you use good strategy and loose then it's a bad thing and the game is probably using cheap tricks to make it harder.

reibeatall
08-25-2007, 11:25 PM
Just beat it, and I love this game. It's one that I'll replay over and over throughout the years.

My biggest question about this whole thing was that the time seemed all fucked up to me. How long was Rapture around? I remember Fontaine saying something like "I've put 14 years of my life down here," but that doesn't let me know when it all started going to hell. Walking through Rapture, it seemed like the war was at the very end, but I had no idea when it started.

Also, for a game that was so incredible in its storytelling, it sure has a shitty ending. I got the good one, but I watched the bad one as well.

Eusis
08-25-2007, 11:40 PM
I'm under the impression the war occurred a year before the game. The game has a lot of hints laying around in signs in stuff. I seem to recall reading the game took place in 1960, and you see "Happy New Year 1959!" around, at least in the opening area, as well as Diane McClintok's New Year's Eve message that seems fine and normal at first then all of a sudden hell breaks loose.

reibeatall
08-25-2007, 11:45 PM
Good poitns, but how long did the "war" last?

Jakanden
08-26-2007, 05:35 AM
If I recall correctly, Rapture was created in 1946, peaked in the early 1950's and then went down from there after the discovery of Adam. So the war would have been during the later half of the 50's.

Stiv
08-26-2007, 02:27 PM
I don't get it, Isn't using good strategy and winning the sign of good game play?

To me if you use good strategy and loose then it's a bad thing and the game is probably using cheap tricks to make it harder.

I led him into an RPG turret, which took down about 3/4 of his health and then had to do the rest old-fashioned, with a machine gun. I got wasted in the second half because I wasn't careful enough, and probably should have led him on to another hacked turret. I've heard of people dying even when they set up the most careful of ambushes against the Big Daddy because they make even one minor mistake, which I think is pretty fair.

For the record, best Big Daddy takedown: Piling oxygen tanks onto an oil patch, lighting the sucker on fire and then leading him into it. Instant death. I'd like it if you'd kindly post your own Big Eel stories of what your finest murder moment in Rapture was.

Savathun
08-26-2007, 02:44 PM
The first Big Daddy I took down was a complete uphill battle. I hadn't figured he'd be easy, but I was used to taking out splicers, so I hadn't expected him to be that hard. I unloaded everything I had and it took forever. So it was really gratifying as the game went on to find that I was slowly becoming more and more powerful and could take them down with relative ease.

Never felt too bad about taking them out, either. You can't save them, but you CAN save the Little Sisters, and if they're standing in the way of that, well, what can you do?

Figure Four
08-26-2007, 05:29 PM
In Hephaestus there was a big daddy standing at the top of a narrow staircase. I dropped four proximity mines down the length of the stairs and then took a shot at him with my shotgun. He charged down through all of the mines and it took only a couple more shots to kill him.

Of course this left me with no proximity mines during the drain the core sequence but that wasn't too bad.

Jason
08-27-2007, 01:41 AM
Well, I just beat it, and the less than a minute long final cut scene (presumably the only thing that would change with the "alternate endings") that leads simply and abruptly back to the main menu really exemplifies how irresponsible and, frankly, half-assed it was to offer no New Game+ option, nor unlockable content of any kind, with this game. I've never seen one that needed it more. From the very first time I played the demo, I explicitly anticipated a few playthroughs in, having infinite EVE.

I really should have suspected something was amiss when Ken Levine championed the versatility of combat as giving the game replayability. As if fighting wasn't a generic, tedious mess. He made so many false, unnecessary promises! He went on and on about wanting the player to experience "fire," not "fire damage." Yet when I light an enemy aflame, it alters his actions insofar as it plays different audio clips. He still runs right at me, gun in hand. This cannot be stated loudly enough, either - if they did not want me to have a concept of fire damage in my head, why would the game include plasmid and tonic upgrades that literally INCREASE the damage that my fire attack does?! And let's not forget the enemies with health bars so large that they actually outlast the fire. Yeah, how engrossing.

On the subject of the visceral hand graphics, Levine again uses that as an example of how BioShock's powers are different than the usual pristine fantasy fare. He insists that the elements behave like elements in this game. Yet I cannot burn down wood constructs with fire. I didn't want these promises to be made. It makes no difference to me and I'm perfectly willing to accept whatever excuse they choose to offer for fire behaving exactly as it does in any other game. But seeing my character's hand's skin scarred and burnt, as opposed to watching it yield an Oblivion-style magical fireball, is a very shallow, aesthetic difference. They act exactly the same.

But that isn't half of the combat's problems. With Levine espousing its variety, you would think they would do more to make it, say, varied? I survived 90% of the non-Big Daddy enemies of this game with the exact same shock and wrench combo I used to kill the very first splicer.

That first splicer. It was everything right about the game (by which I mean the demo). I, a gamer since birth, watched him from the first Bathysphere and wondered aloud "How the hell am I going to kill this guy?" I was unarmed, scared, helpless. I was more afraid of that very first splicer than I've been of some games' final bosses. Killing him was a medley of emotion, the ideal chord of relief from my fear, murderous satisfaction, and the vague apprehension of knowing that there'd be more. That is a perfect game moment. But by the time I've killed my hundredth splicer using the exact same means? The emotion is gone. There's no fear, only weariness. There are guns in this game I never even touched - much less the plasmids that I, and probably most gamers, left in the Gatherer's Gardens. Shock, wrench, shock, wrench. Every splicer, every boss. And although I had to change up my strategy for the Big Daddies, after a few of those battles, they were completely uniform as well.

The demo was nearer to perfection than I could have imagined. My immersion level was the highest it's been since I was thirteen years old. From the very first second, I was in (and being fairly anti-360 in the first place, I was a hard sell). Every moment of that demo was tense, monumental and wondrous. I was literally left breathless and for the rest of the week, until the game's release, I couldn't help myself from thinking of it. It actually dominated my conversation with family at my birthday dinner. I was dreaming about it.

I was also worried that it would become just another FPS experience. I am not an FPS player, I can't stand it. Yet my greatest worries, that the game would be too frantic and difficult, breaking the flow of the story, would have been a welcome improvement to what I was actually given - a game so repetitive and, frankly, dull (in a gameplay sense) that the story never stood of chance of keeping me emotionally involved.

Remember, in the demo, finding the mother splicer ranting over her absent child's crib? It was wonderfully eerie and chilling. Ten hours later, I enter yet another new room (oh, by the way, the game's map system was the first flaw I was willing to admit it had), hear yet another distant ranting, and all I can think is, ugh, another shock and wrench. If they could have cut out ninety-nine out of every hundred splicers in this game, and devoted time to making the remaining ones as unique as the first, the game would have held me. Even the bosses play exactly the same as the normal splicer, simply with greater health bars! How can you possibly justify that?!

The art of the game (art, not graphics, I trust this forum more than any other to know the difference) remains beautiful and the soundtrack is a real highlight of the experience, but these things, while jaw-dropping at first, cannot sustain the game. Finding diaries is a wonderful means of conveying backstory - using an almost entirely identical way of conveying the present story is an extremely monotonous venture. At Tenenbaum's introduction, the scene where you first decide the fate of a Little Sister, I lamented slightly the game took control away from me for the first time. Once again, if only that had been the worst case. It could have given me a hundred of such cutscenes and I would have welcomed them with open arms in lieu of getting every single new piece of information from that same damn radio.

The game has some moments of wonder that match the demo, Ryan's death particularly shining as a diamond in the rough (his final words literally echoed on my lips for a few minutes afterward), but their impact is inexorably truncated by the sheer amount of time you spend with the same set of six or so splicer types, and the at times inaudible radio storytelling. It's a good game, but that doesn't stop it from being a disappointment as well, its first hour being lightyears better than anything that followed.

Still, all would have been forgiven had they just let me unlock infinite EVE or something. More like BioCrock, I say.

Savathun
08-27-2007, 01:57 AM
I really liked the good ending. I mean, some credits or something afterwards would've made it feel more proper and give it more closure, but I love that whole "And what was your reward? You never told me, but..." and then all the hands reaching out.

As for the plasmids, yeah... I pretty much just used the lightning one and telekinesis, with a couple of Hypnotize Big Daddies thrown in. I never found a single use for the stupid bee thing. Even fully powered up, it was worthless to me. Freezing would be fine except that when your enemy is shattered, you can't loot him or her, so why bother?

I almost never used the wrench, though. By the time I got the shotgun, I was rotating through firearms to the exclusion of pretty much all else. Not sure why. I even used less plasmids than I had before.

Oh, and this theory has been floating around on the BioShock boards for a while now: Ignoring the likely idea that the Vita-Chamber IS just a gameplay conceit, shouldn't Andrew Ryan regenerate in one after he's killed? It would explain why a guy like him would suddenly be so willing to die to prove a point.

Vahn16
08-27-2007, 02:01 AM
I had a kill just like that except the Big Daddy died on the last proximity mine and proceeded to ragdoll forward at lickety speed down the reamining steps.

My favorite Big Daddy kill was my last, however. When the Big Daddy emerged in Proving Ground, I was wielding my trusty ice wrench, so I just started thwaking him with it. For some reason, the Big Daddy couldn't touch me -- every time it tried to hit me, nothing happened. Funnily enough, I had been hurting somewhat from previous battles, but I had equipped the tonic that gives back health for wrench-maulings, so the entire fight was a net gain in terms of health. It did take quite a while, though, and my trigger finger -- actually my trigger arm -- felt as though Little Sisters had been jabbing it with needles afterwards.

Also, I just finished the game. I got the good ending, and yeah, it was a let-down. It was a laugh to see Fontaine get dog-piled and stabbed to death by a brigade of Little Sisters, though. I would've liked to find out what happened to Rapture after the good ending, but would you kindly say sequel?

Now that I'm done, I've realized that this game would be perfectly suited to a a New Game + sort of file where you could either replay the game with all your maxed-out powers (and a higher difficulty, obviously) or just have all of Rapture open to explore after you beat the game. As is, I'm not sure if I have a save file where all of Rapture is open, but this is one of the few games that's so great that I'll probably replay it just so I can create a file like that.

Edit: Beaten to the punch on the New Game + idea.

Edit 2: In regards to Jason's comments: I agree that the demo was very immersive, but it sounds like you set your expectations extremely high. I can't think of a game that doesn't have its up's-and-down's, and moreover, I can't think of a game that's ever maintained the level of immersion you were expecting. At least 2K Boston tried, and hopefully they can achieve it with the inevitable sequel. I see the potential in Bioshock as a positive thing, not a disappointment, and hopefully both 2K Boston and other developers will improve on that immersion factor.

As for your New Game + infinte Eve idea, aren't you contradicting yourself? If fights always came down to Electro Bolt and the wrench, why would you want infinite Eve? And if you plan on experimenting with that unlimited Eve, why didn't you just do that during your initial playthrough of the game? Towards the middle-end of the game, I nearly always had plenty of Eve, so there was ample time for me to mess around with my powers. Are you sure you didn't enjoy the powers in the game more than you're letting on? [/End Phoenix Wright]

Jason
08-27-2007, 02:56 AM
! (http://www.ftusa.org/rapeyouface/investigation.mp3)

Infinite EVE is just a half-hearted suggestion. Right now I personally consider Resident Evil 4 to be the gold standard in most aspects of video games, and that game offers no unlimited health, in the end, but its unlockables are considerable, with both new game modes and, importantly, new guns (which do have infinite ammo, noted). The fun of using them has led me to play the game over fifteen times, across three different versions. I'm no more attached to the idea of having infinite EVE than I am to having some extraordinary new gun, plasmid, enemy skins - what have you. Simply allowing the game to be replayed with all the last game's powers from the start, which seems most basic of anything, would have been pretty much sufficient.

It is a statement about my style as a gamer that I conserve to a huge extent. Despite the prevalence of ammo, I tend to stick to melee weapons exclusively (this explains my overuse of shock and wrench, but I don't think it excuses the combination's effectiveness). But I was conservative with my EVE to a point where I rarely desired to play around with plasmids (although I did try them all). And I did find the enemies to be too fragile to warrant such experimentation anyway.

But my main grievances are two separate complaints, or rather desires, emanating from the same problem. I want some sort of gameplay-affecting unlockable to make combat more fun and exciting. I'm far from the first to complain about the small number of plasmids that are actually useful. Aside from, that, however, it is the fundamental tedium of combat (that leaves the want of unlockables such a sore wound) that ruins my immersion, which I think could have been rectified by giving the player more cutscenes or story segments or whatever you'd like to refer to them as, and also devoting more time to making enemies (and bosses, which shouldn't even have been an issue) unique.

While I naturally would have eventually found my bearings in the game somewhat, all my feelings of astonishment in the demo vanished far too quickly for me to say that 2K did not fail to meet its own potential (and I mean potential established not through hype, but in its first hour).

Stiv
08-27-2007, 12:31 PM
I've got to say that somebody complaining about the tedium in Bioshock while extolling the virtues of Resident Evil 4 has something wrong with them. RE4 is a great, excellent, marvelous game - but the enemy variety is honestly just as limited, and just as boring. Fuck, I can't think of a single game where the combat isn't fundamentally boring - it's the way the game presents it that makes it interesting, and RE4's is really only interesting when the game is dumping a bunch of enemies on you at once. Nothing else in the game matches the first major confrontation where you're surrounded by villagers. Bioshock at least has the Big Daddy confrontations, which always have the potential to be interesting even though there are ways to game the system.

The delight in replaying RE4 comes from using those awesome new weapons to blow off zombie heads and honestly Bioshock has enough variety that you could effectively do the same thing - just play the game using different weapons (if you didn't play on Hard, that mode actually encourages using something other than shock/wrench, by the way). Set your own goals. Games don't need New Game+ or anything to make replaying them interesting if they provide enough variety to begin with (unless, like Chrono Trigger or Dead Rising, some of that variety is impossible to achieve without a New Game+).

The main problem with shock/wrench is that you can run out of EVE fairly quickly, but the prevalence of money and vending machines solves that problem. If there's something wrong with the game, it's that vending machines and $$$ are way too fucking plentiful - sure, it's relatively rare that you find ammo, especially in the early game, but when you've always got at least 300 monies in your pocket you never feel pressured to conserve too hard. I mostly used the wrench on my first playthrough on Normal out of Shock 2 habits, and it was definitely too easy and yeah, a little boring. I don't think the joy of the game comes from combat, though, it comes from exploring the world - and if you play through again, you try different strategies. Honestly I bet you could play through the whole game using nothing but Telekenesis (it's cheap!), if you really wanted.

That said the same five plasmids almost never never left my slots, and I never used any of the weapons besides the wrench, pistol, shotgun, and machine gun except for once or twice in the whole game - then I realized how goofy that was towards the end, and dorked around with the other weapons, which I realized were situationally useful.

Because of the game's story, I think that the two (or three, if you count the ending) cutscenes are just fine. The player should have control at all times, except when explicitly told to do something that a player wouldn't necessarily do.

But it's true that the first hour of the game isn't matched at all until the confrontation with Ryan, and then never matched again until you become a Big Daddy and the play mechanics change a little, but I didn't mind that. The game's an A to B affair (which is one of my real problems with it) and in those games it's usually not how you get there that's interesting, it's what happens at A and B. It's just a shame that A and B are usually so far apart.

The game definitely has a some problems (crippled AI [compared to what we were promised], too many resources, A-to-B mentality) but I still think it's excellent. Maybe I'm just biased because I think System Shock 2 is one of the best games ever made? Bioshock is essentially the same thing.

reibeatall
08-27-2007, 12:39 PM
At first, I HATED the part where you're killing Ryan. I personally didn't want him dead, for similar reasons that I kept Sadler alive. I was very upset at the fact that the computer took over and killed Ryan.

It wasn't until a few days after that I realized that that single point has to be one of the most emotional points in any game. I didn't want to, but my character was brainwashed, not only proving Fontane's method worked, but how utterly useless I felt with no power. It just really bothered me, and I loved it.

I really wish I could play this game for the first time again. I loved the experiance, but I don't think it will feel the same with another playthrough.

Ben1842
08-27-2007, 02:11 PM
While I kind of agree with all the stuff your saying. For me it's all a little nit picky.
Yes the game wasn't as awesome as the developer promised (big shock), But that doesn't mean it wasn't good.
Even with all the flaws you mentioned, I think it is heads and tales above most games that come out.
It was fun, not too long, not too short. It had an interesting premise and for the most part it delivered it well.

At a certain point I feel like people want to hate a game because everyone else likes it. A lot of people do that to Halo, and while I feel that it isn't as good as some people say. It's still a very fun game.

Maybe next time look for the fun, not the flaws. There's lots of fun to be had in Bioshock. Sorry you missed out on it.

Jason
08-27-2007, 02:51 PM
Of the many aspects of gaming I feel that Resident Evil 4 conquered to perfection, enemy variety is not one of them, certainly. But compared to BioShock, it is superior, as I do have to change my strategy between enemy types - and drastically alter my tactics in boss fights (fancy that!). Find me an explanation, though, why I am fifteen rounds into Resident Evil 4 and still enjoy killing villagers while I was tired of splicers before my first playthrough. My own personal preference for third person could be the reason, but there's also something to be said for having basic anatomically-appropriate reactions by enemies to gunshot wounds to different parts of the bodies (and from there allowing context sensitive attacks, etc.) and guns, guns, guns, guns, guns. Guns that alter gameplay, guns worth experimenting with, guns that are necessary, guns that are customizable (another of Levine's unnecessary and false promises; he should have said upgradeable, not customizable).

To bring up the first confrontation with villagers raises a good point. Many gamers, myself included, activate the game's first Dr. Salvador in that area and subsequently run away in fear. It's possible, though difficult, to kill him with your standard equipment, but as the game progresses, you earn more varied guns that are almost entirely required to take him and the other chainsaw enemies down. This is in stark contrast to how, no matter the enemy type, all splicers are susceptible to the exact same method. There's great satisfaction in growing more and more powerful in Resident Evil 4 that is crucially absent from BioShock, in my opinion.

Which is, of course, to say nothing of being able to start your second game in RE4 equipped with an infinite rocket launcher, ready for that first Dr. Salvador once again. I call that the definition of satisfaction.

BioShock's linear nature doesn't bother me at all, since I think everyone considers it a story-driven game, and that seems to me the natural (and perhaps only) way to tell a story (of course, I also would have said you can't tell a story through radio transmissions, and there BioShock would have proven me wrong [or right, according to my criticism]). The game does reward exploration with new tonics and, particularly, diary entries (which I adore). Unfortunately, exploration itself (especially to a completist like me) is as mundane and tedious an affair as combat, only longer, thanks to the game's unhelpful and befuddling map.

As a day's gone by now, I'm easing into a desire to play the game again, on Hard (what a wonderful reward) and try more experimentation with the guns. I can only hope the feeling of doing so won't be tarnished completely by the fact that I've done it all already - that the game's given me nothing new for my troubles. If this were Resident Evil 4, I could destroy that first horrifying splicer with a rocket launcher now.

Savathun
08-27-2007, 02:53 PM
At first, I HATED the part where you're killing Ryan. I personally didn't want him dead, for similar reasons that I kept Sadler alive. I was very upset at the fact that the computer took over and killed Ryan.

It wasn't until a few days after that I realized that that single point has to be one of the most emotional points in any game. I didn't want to, but my character was brainwashed, not only proving Fontane's method worked, but how utterly useless I felt with no power. It just really bothered me, and I loved it.

I really wish I could play this game for the first time again. I loved the experiance, but I don't think it will feel the same with another playthrough.

Yeah, in that moment, I completely forgot about how many evil things Ryan had done and how I had wanted to take him out before.

Cuz you never really GET to take him out. You don't get to do anything. And, if nothing else, it would've been nice to talk to him more, hear him out.

Oh, and hey, someone mentioned System Shock 2. Is there any way to get a hold of that game now? Like something similar to the way Bungie put out Marathon for free? That'd be lovely.

Stiv
08-27-2007, 06:14 PM
Download Shock 2 here. (http://www.the-underdogs.info/game.php?gameid=3924) Underdogs also hosts a lot of 'abandonware' and if it's still available for sale they tend to link to a store selling it (like with Planescape: Torment). With the recent bitching about Bioshock, I've got to say that SS2 solves these particular problems that were mentioned (enemy variety, A-to-B, weapons, etc), even though Bioshock solved all of the problems that make SS2 downright UNPLAYABLE to some people (like the fucking terrible weapon maintenance/breakage system).

I think it's wrong to think of Bioshock as having 'boss fights' - there are encounters with main characters, who are splicers just like everyone else in the city. There's no reason for them to have special abilities, so I'm okay with it - and of course they're not any smarter or anything, that's just how the AI is (witness: Peach blowing himself up in my game). If anything I think the final battle with Fontaine is super fucking goofy because honestly. He should just be some regular gangster thug with better AI, not a Big Daddy knockoff with specific elemental weaknesses. There are splicers that're harder than him.

I never had problems with the Dr. Slavadors in RE4's beginning. Maybe this is why I found replaying it so unsatisfying? I don't think having a weapon with infinite ammo actually adds anything to the game, either. It's unsatisfying in a lot of ways because it makes the game boring to play - you just blow everything up with your rocket launcher. It's just about as interesting as hitting 100 generic enemies with the same wrench, over and over.

My main problem with Bioshock's A-to-B is that here you have this awesome, lovingly rendered and carefully constructed world, and you're going to be looking at most of it exactly once. The only reason to return to areas is when you find door codes in tape messages (ps to tape messages: I've already hacked all those doors, thanks) or if you pick up the key to the Muse box. My other problem with it is that it's one of the parts of the game that's actually a major, major step down from Shock 2, where every area of the ship serves a specific function and you're going to be going back to these areas a lot to complete new objectives or find new information.

Also yeah, the map really sucks, in a lot of ways. It should honestly be unnecessary, but I guess playtesting revealed that the game needed to do SOME hand-holding.

Also I've got to wonder: What the fuck is wrong with completing a game being its own reward these days? Is this some kind of Reverse Castle syndrome, where we need to unnecessarily double the length of a game somehow?

Sarcasmorator
08-27-2007, 09:56 PM
Fontaine was weak to elements? I thought he was just weak. I took him out with the shotgun, grenades and RPGs, mostly. didn't even use half my medkits.

I loved the game for the vast majority (the diaries in particular were great — Suchong's end was terrific on tape), but I felt like the narrative went off the tracks a little bit after the big Andrew Ryan reveal. OK, Fontaine/Atlas is the real bad guy, you've been a rube and a tool, and now you have to kill the gangster with the help of a repentant former Nazi doctor, but really. The climax of the game happened in Hephaestus. After that it was three hours of falling action; not even turning into a Big Daddy was as cool as it could have been (plus, does Jack get his voice back later?).

As for the repetitive combat, well, it's no more repetitive than any FPS, ever. Halo is about using the same batch of weapons and grenades to take out the same sorts of enemies over and over. It's how you takethem out that's fun. And more so in this case if you mix up your tactics. Yeah, you CAN get through most of the game with shock and wrench. But there's no one saying you HAVE to.

Vahn16
08-28-2007, 12:04 AM
The game definitely succumbed to the "Halo Syndrome" -- repeating the same small stretches of fun over and over, ad nauseum -- but like Halo, I think it did it well, for the most part. There were plenty of ways to defeat the admittedly small number of enemy types (just take a look at the other Bioshock Fun Club threads for proof) and I, for one, wanted to find out how the plot would be resolved, so that was a driving force as well. And even though the good ending left some threads unresolved (or unmentioned, actually) and was kind of sappy, it still made me smile.

Francis
08-28-2007, 12:08 AM
I don't know. There's something intangible that makes fighting splicers in Bioshock pretty unentertaining, regardless of how you do it. I'm not sure if it's the weaponry, the AI, or maybe just the way splicers don't really react to your attacks. Towards the end of the game, a leadhead will just plow bullets into you with his ten million points of health until he finally dies. There's no running for cover, no flinching, no woundedness. If you set him on fire, he'll stand there, on fire, shooting his unlimited ammo machine gun.

People rag on Doom 3 for being the most uninspired, generic, repetitive FPS in recent memory, and for valid reasons all. But even though killing an imp with a point-blank shotgun blast to the head in the first stage is exactly the same as doing it in the last, there's a certain satisfaction in the execution. I very rarely got this kind of feeling from BioShock, regardless of the situation.

Ben1842
08-28-2007, 12:14 AM
I really hope that doesn't mean you like doom 3 better than Bioshock.

I think that would be silly. Monster closets and no flashlight come to mind as being big show stoppers in that one.

Also I never could make myself finish Doom 3
But I finished Bioshock almost a week ago.

Stiv
08-28-2007, 12:49 AM
Tim Rogers would say Bioshock lacks "crunch" I bet. I guess it does, but I've almost come to the conclusion that all of the non-Big Daddy encounters exist solely so that you have something to shoot at in the A-to-B, and aren't really something that they put a lot of thought behind aside from the scripted encounters (some of which are great). This is actually something that bothered me while I was playing the game, but didn't really diminish my enjoyment of it.

The game's Halo (2) syndrome is made better by the fact that even though you spend a lot of time in similarly-configured rooms, at least all of them look unique and feel like their own little world. If nothing else the game is a total triumph of art design.

Francis
08-28-2007, 12:55 AM
I really hope that doesn't mean you like doom 3 better than Bioshock.

I think that would be silly. Monster closets and no flashlight come to mind as being big show stoppers in that one.


I was certainly less disappointed in it. There's very little that you could do to improve Doom 3 without making it a completely different game, for better or worse. There's much in Bioshock that is unfinished, cut, poorly implemented, partially implemented, scaled back, or in need of serious polish. While a well-made game that doesn't interest me is boring, a poorly-made or unfinished game really gets under my skin.

It's funny that you mention monster closets and flashlights though. A flashlight would have come in handy in Bioshock. Also, I remember thinking, after picking up the shotgun, 'wow. Even Doom 3 didn't pull an ambush this bad.'

Jason
08-28-2007, 01:09 AM
I like the cut of your jib, Francis.

About Reverse Castle Syndrome, can you really tell me that a game ending and going back to the main menu immediately, with no credits, congratulations, (dare I say) confirmation of unlocked content, was not a startling moment? I honestly can't remember that ever happening before, even racking my brain back to eight bit days.

While I didn't feel that the game was any worse after Ryan's death like some are saying (I definitely credit Fontaine's messages with riling me up, although by them I was also quite agitated that I had learned there was no New Game+ and that combat was so, blah, blah, everything I've complained about before), that combined with a bush league jump back to the main menu really makes one feel like the game is unfinished.

Inherently, nothing is wrong with the game being its own reward. I don't complain when Zelda games offer me nothing for completion. Is it because I get a sense of closure from seeing credits, or longer ending cutscenes? Is it because the game is, conservatively, twice, usually three times as long as BioShock? Or is it because I'm more fulfilled because actually playing them (rather than watching, or, more accurately, listening to them) was so satisfying? It's probably a combination of all three. For a game like BioShock, though, which is a comparatively quick, monotonous experience, a precedent has been set for the inclusion of unlockables, and it's futile to deny that. If all other games of the same kind are doing something to make themselves more fun, you can't just cast that aside as unnecessary. I, as a gamer, wanted and assumed that there would be unlockable content. If the industry has evolved to the point where this is common (as I think it has), developers have an obligation to respond.

I don't believe in spending $60 for twenty hours (or $70 for twenty hours and a figurine).

Ben1842
08-28-2007, 05:04 AM
I don't believe in spending $60 for twenty hours (or $70 for twenty hours and a figurine).


The PC version is only 50 if that helps lol

Also I dis agree that unlockables are a standard in games. Tons of games have nothing to unlock and it's not big deal. I can't even think of what I would unlock in Bioshock that would have made me happy about it.


For instance Diablo Has no unlockables to speak of, but that doesn't mean it's not a fun game.

poetfox
08-28-2007, 07:46 AM
I don't believe in spending $60 for twenty hours (or $70 for twenty hours and a figurine).

I don't really know what to suggest, besides not buying games at launch anymore.

Anyway, I really can't agree that the game should be longer. What would they put in the game to make it that way? It's been stated that there are a small number of enemy types and that they get way too resilient near the end of the game. I really can't disagree with that, but about the time I was getting fed up with it, the game ended. There's a time for games to end, and Bioshock ended right about that time for me. It also anticipated me getting bored with things and let me stop doing them, which I appreciated (I talk about hacking Turrets and Security cameras... about the time I got tired of the pipe game, the camera research let me hack them for free and getting ahold of automatic hack tools was no big deal).
Yes, the ending sucked. But what else would I have done in Rapture afterward? I really can't think of anything besides wandering around. I guess I could have tried to secure passage... but that boss fight was the climax of the story. Yes, they could have had more and better cutscenes to end it, or maybe some sort of run to a bathysphere while having radio conversations with Tenenbaum or something. That's a problem. But I do think that's where the game should have ended. I really don't think that reflects on the rest of the game as a whole. Then again, I have the same feeling about KoToR II, so I suppose your mileage may vary.

Stiv
08-28-2007, 12:16 PM
About Reverse Castle Syndrome, can you really tell me that a game ending and going back to the main menu immediately, with no credits, congratulations, (dare I say) confirmation of unlocked content, was not a startling moment?

It kind of pissed me off, because Bioshock has been sold pretty hard on its development pedigree (SHOCK 2!!! FREEDOM FORCE!!! ETC.) and the credits, like with a lot of games today, are something optional to view that most people will never look at. It's a nice way of pissing all over the developers without going back to the DEVELOPERS AREN'T IMPORTANT 2600 days, plus you're right that it doesn't feel like you have any closure, which is also extremely maddening. This is one of the things I really didn't like about the game, yeah, even if it hadn't been sold on the strength/rigidness of the boners some people in the gaming world have for Levine.

I don't complain when Zelda games offer me nothing for completion.

Except for those with a second quest, which is probably one of the best unlockables ever.

a precedent has been set for the inclusion of unlockables, and it's futile to deny that.

I'm totally calling bullshit on this. Does any FPS (which by definition are fairly monotonous, as covered) have unlockables? Some of these are pretty recent. You mentioned that you don't play a lot of them so I can see how you would have been misled into thinking that Bioshock, since every Castlevania game these days has unlockables, should also have them. Unlockables just don't fit comfortably into a lot of FPSes and the people who traditionally play them don't expect unlockables, so I think that's kind of an unreleastic expectation.


I don't believe in spending $60 for twenty hours (or $70 for twenty hours and a figurine).

Did you ever buy a game between, say, when the Atari 2600 came out and roughly 3/4 of the way into the PS2's lifespan? $60 is about a sub sandwich away from the $50 people have been used to paying since the PS1 came out, the era in which many of us started buying our own games. I've dumped plenty of money into games that have significantly less than 20 total hours of play but this doesn't stop them from being awesome games that are worth the investment, and sometimes they're designed for replay, which despite all its flaws I really think Bioshock is made for. Maybe after a second playthrough I'll change my mind about that, but I still think the game is going to become one of those that I play bi-yearly or so.

(PS: $60/20 hrs = $3/hr. That's a pretty good deal these days.)

reibeatall
08-28-2007, 01:22 PM
I don't believe in spending $60 for twenty hours (or $70 for twenty hours and a figurine).

It's better than $15 for a movie on DVD for 2 hours.

Savathun
08-28-2007, 11:16 PM
Download Shock 2 here. (http://www.the-underdogs.info/game.php?gameid=3924)

Thanks. I couldn't get it to work, but it's the thought that counts. I finally got the thing downloaded after mounds of trouble, and now when I try to run System Shock 2, I can get to the main menu, but if I try to watch the intro or start a new game, the screen freaks out and I get an error.

Ah, well.

ringworm
08-29-2007, 12:00 AM
I've obtained System Shock 2 via less than reputable means on at least 3 seperate occasions and tried to get it to work on different versions of Windows each time (2000, then XP, then Vista) and I've never been successfully able to run it, despite tons of research and fiddling.

Sarcasmorator
08-29-2007, 12:26 AM
Quick question if anyone knows: what happened to these guys? (http://www.1up.com/do/slideshow?pager.offset=0&mt=0&cId=3150047&mId=2842637) They weren't in the game, but this Big Daddy design was in BioShock features pretty recently.

Sapper Gopher
08-29-2007, 04:57 AM
They were cut obviously. I remember Levine recently saying they were only able to get two models in the game.

Sarcasmorator
08-29-2007, 08:53 AM
Ah, there we go then. As soon as I found out you become a Big Daddy in the game, I assumed you'd become this type since they hadn't shown up yet and then you'd be a unique specimen. Ah, well.

Stiv
08-29-2007, 11:10 AM
Thanks. I couldn't get it to work, but it's the thought that counts. I finally got the thing downloaded after mounds of trouble, and now when I try to run System Shock 2, I can get to the main menu, but if I try to watch the intro or start a new game, the screen freaks out and I get an error.

Ah, well.

It apparently tries to flip a bitch on any system later than Win2k. You can probably google for some assistance getting it to work on XP but I bet Vista is a total loss. I got it working on 2K pretty easily, there are some settings you have to dork around with (just like with Thief, since it runs on the same engine).

Here's the be-all end-all of getting Shock 2 to run. (http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=69958)

Issun
08-30-2007, 08:56 PM
I so want to set Terry Goodkind down in front of a TV and make him play this game.
I think it would be funny.

wahoninja
08-31-2007, 02:24 PM
Was Suchong in the game? (Besides the audio diary stuff, I mean.) He'd have been another character I think everyone would have enjoyed killing, whether you had to or not, as was the case with Cohen.

Really, did anyone let Cohen live?

reibeatall
08-31-2007, 02:29 PM
Was Suchong in the game? (Besides the audio diary stuff, I mean.) He'd have been another character I think everyone would have enjoyed killing, whether you had to or not, as was the case with Cohen.

Really, did anyone let Cohen live?

Yeah, Suchong's in the Big Daddy facility. He's the guy with the big ass drill going through his chest.

And I left Cohen live. I really liked his character, and I felt that there was no reason to kill him.

Sarcasmorator
08-31-2007, 02:34 PM
EDIT: Nevermind, Reibeatall me to it. But I think he's in the orphanage, not the Big Daddy lab.

wahoninja
08-31-2007, 02:52 PM
And I left Cohen live. I really liked his character, and I felt that there was no reason to kill him.

He manipulated you!

Did he pull the "would you kindly" thing? (He had to have!) And I was wondering if Tenenbaum was pulling your strings in the end there, too.

"Become a Big Daddy!"
"Okay!"

That Ryan so wanted you to fight the mind control before he got the death beat into him was so badass. Have you guys been giving the avatar a name, by the way? Doesn't it say "Jack" on the card at the beginning?

poetfox
08-31-2007, 02:58 PM
I let Cohen live... and I didn't even get the benefit for doing it because I just found out about it... Did you know there's a Power to the People station you can only get to if you let him live? It's true! Also, an achievement.

reibeatall
08-31-2007, 03:05 PM
I let Cohen live... and I didn't even get the benefit for doing it because I just found out about it... Did you know there's a Power to the People station you can only get to if you let him live? It's true! Also, an achievement.

But I thought you had to kill him in his apartment (NOT Fort Frolic) in order to access his room.

And wahoninja, regardless of the manipulation (or maybe because of), he posed NO threat. The ONLY reason to kill him is pure revenge, and I just didn't feel the need. The only way I could justify killing the Big Daddies was to save the Little Sisters, but other than that, I didn't feel the need to kill any more than necessary.

Eusis
08-31-2007, 03:09 PM
I killed Cohen twice.

reibeatall
08-31-2007, 03:20 PM
You, sir, are a monster.

Savathun
08-31-2007, 03:31 PM
I didn't feel too bad killing Cohen. He was going around plastering people, so I figured why not? Plus, he had a key I wanted.

Jason
08-31-2007, 06:39 PM
I absolutely despised Cohen and killing him was a tremendous joy. I couldn't keep myself from doing it immediately, so it's a shame I didn't get into his apartment. I hated him badly enough to photograph his corpse without knowing it was an Achievement.

Issun
08-31-2007, 07:31 PM
Killing Cohen was more of a reflex for me. I hear him talking after the preceding mayhem, assume it's over the speaker, or whatever, and start up the stairs.
I see a guy in a mask, and my brain, now attuned to the rules of this game, says mask... baaad!, so I shoot the bejeezus out of him. Then, I realize it's Cohen, and figure I'm supposed to kill him anyway. I didn't know you could let him live.
God, this game is good.

SEanEF
09-01-2007, 03:35 AM
I generally enjoyed the game, I thought the story elements were wonderful and the environment/atmosphere was great. The splicers could have added to the creepiness factor by doing more of some of the odd stuff like the dancing couple or the one talking to the gun in the baby carriage. Having them act as dead bodies later in the game was a great moment too.

I killed Cohen sort of as a curiosity ("He's a bastard... and I wonder if there's anything interesting in that box of his...") and sort of never bother to reload and let him live to see what happened.

Finding Suchong after listening to the message where he gets drilled was a sort of double take. Mainly because all the corpses sort of blurred together after a while ("ho hum, gather more junk... hey wait, is this...?).

Did most of you play it on 360? I'm sort of curious as I went through the PC version (on XP) so didn't have the incentive of achievements to do certain types of things, like complete all research, etc.

Also, as a couple side notes based on Jason's comments earlier, in my playthrough I could NOT use the electro bolt stun/wrench to the head combo on every splicer. Some of them were immune to the electro bolt (they'd have sparks flying off them) and they'd just ignore it and leap at your head containing it's precious plasmid cargo. Splicers that were caught on fire would only continue to run at you if there was no water nearby for them to run to so they could put themselves out (where they were now ripe for enhanced electro shock therapy... if they weren't immune).

reibeatall
09-01-2007, 08:46 AM
Man, I don't even know what box you guys keep talking about. Where was Cohen's box?

Savathun
09-01-2007, 08:48 AM
Tee hee! Where, indeed.

Good lord, I'm a child.

reibeatall
09-01-2007, 09:08 AM
Ohh come ooooonnnnnnnn!

Tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me tell me Brandon's being a meanie head!

SlimJimm
09-01-2007, 09:44 AM
Do you mean the treasure chest in the Atrium with the big lock on it? I dont remember there being anything interesting inside.

Although now I feel like a fool looking all over the older areas for the last Power to the People station and now find out that it was impossible for me to get since I killed Cohen. (sigh)

PhoenixUltima
09-01-2007, 03:55 PM
If I remember rightly that stupid muse box only has 100 bucks, some incendiary bolts, and a few spider splicer organs (aka medkits). Not exactly worth passing up a Power to the People station for, and not really worth going back to Fort Frolic for either.

Guy
09-01-2007, 05:07 PM
Finding Suchong after listening to the message where he gets drilled was a sort of double take. Mainly because all the corpses sort of blurred together after a while ("ho hum, gather more junk... hey wait, is this...?).

I know. I got the same feeling when I found the corpse on Ryan's trophy wall that mysteriously had in its possession Bill McDonaugh's last message where he plans to kill Ryan.

Also, I was replaying today and I discovered that if you hurt a Big Daddy by shooting an explosive barrel, he won't attack you since you didn't necessarily attack him directly. It's the same as if you had enraged a Splicer into attacking him.

Eusis
09-01-2007, 05:18 PM
Actually, I had a hypnotized one get enraged when he walked into the electric clotheslines pre-set in one of the Fort Frolic casinos. No idea why, I swear I had the same thing happen again elsewhere and he didn't get pissed off then.

reibeatall
09-01-2007, 08:56 PM
I had the tonic equiped where you emit electricity when you get hit, and if a Big Daddy was near when I got hit by a splicer, I was fucked.

Alixsar
09-02-2007, 02:04 AM
Well, I finally got around to beating it. I must say, the ending was disappointing. And by "the ending" I mean the "okay, you beat it. Here's the title screen." Sure, Bioshock was an incredibly enjoyable experience overall but the game....well, it lacked closure. Fontaine had been talking trash for quite some time, and I finally get to him, and what do I get? Nothing. I circle-strafed (a concept I have been familiar with since DooM circa 1993) for a few minutes with a neon/glowing tommy gun, and then I got the title screen. And as much as 2k's P.R. department had been leaking stories to the media about Bioshock's openendednessosity (it's a real word, I swear) I didn't really find it to be that open-ended. Sure, you could choose how to clear a room, and whether to save a little sister or not, but that was really it. Not a GTA-style degree of choice, I'd say.

But despite all of that, the game was generally speaking incredibly good and exceptionally well-made. Metroid Prime 3 and Mass Effect definitely have their work cut out for them for the semi-coveted Game of the Year title (although MP3 is pretty damn great so far, but I digress).

I just hope the "lack of an ending" thing doesn't become a norm for video games. Gears of War had the same vibe going on. It was a great game with a simple (but still compelling) narrative. Unfortunately, that narrative fell apart in the final act (Okay, we're randomly at a train station for no reason...get on the train! The weapon to save all humanity is arbitrarily on board! And so is that one guy from, like, ten hours ago who killed archtypical "by-the-books" Commander McWhatshisface! Go get 'em!) And FFXII, as fun as it was to play, was burdened with a predictable and unsatisfying resolution (did anyone REALLY think that Han Solo, I mean Balthier, would die? Of course not). Am I the only one who is seeing this?

Games don't have endings anymore. They stop.

SlimJimm
09-02-2007, 09:28 AM
I was waiting for another twist ending such as you really did become a big daddy and had to stay in Rapture or something. I kinda liked the happy (but xtremely short) ending I got from saving the girls, but I would have been much more satisfied with having some explanation of what happened to Rapture.


Also when I talked to my friend about how he played the game, I was surprised to see he almost played the same way I did. We both never really touched certain plasmids like Cyclone Trap and Insect Swarm, and never really used most guns once you become a wrench demigod.
With all the wrench tonics available the wrench becomes a great weapon after Fontaine fisheries, all the way to Hephestus until most enemies dont die in 2 whacks.

They really could have used some more different damage plasmids or even better, they could have thrown in some tonics that make some guns more useful. Maybe it could happen through downloadable content.