bioshock-infinite “Booker, are you afraid of God?”

“No, but I’m afraid of you…”

For years, fans of the BioShock franchise have been waiting for the next installment in the series.  When Ken Levine and Irrational Games finally made the announcement in 2010, the BioShock fan base exploded with enthusiasm.  It took “Best of Show” at the 2011 E3 (amongst many other awards) and fans braced for the early 2012 release.  Then we were hit with a push back to February 2013, and then another push back to March 2013.  Fans everywhere were wondering if Irrational was having issues with the game and if it would actually be worth the wait.  Well, Bioshock fans learned this week that the BioShock Infinite was indeed worth all of the wait and anticipation…

BioShock Infinite is the perfect example of what a high-profile game should be: in-depth story, dramatic characters, gorgeous graphics, challenging gameplay, ties to its predecessors, and hours of fun.  Infinite has set itself to be a powerful asset to the BioShock franchise.  We gamers know that franchises generally will launch at least one game that is a flop (and sometimes early in the series); but Irrational and Ken Levine have pushed the boundaries yet again.  There was some pressure from fans on Irrational when they decided to go completely away from the Rapture we knew and loved in BioShock and BioShock 2, how would the city of Columbia compare?  Would it freak gamers out as much as Rapture?  Would it create the same eerie sense of home?  Would we play through Columbia and still hold Rapture to a higher standard?  Can Irrational really create a new city unlike Rapture that would prevent a flop?  The answers to all of these questions is: yes!  Columbia’s vast areas have created a massive map that players are completely immersed in.  Even though Columbia is in the sky and there is a “lighter” atmosphere than Rapture, Columbia has its dark secrets that will engage and disturb fans everywhere; drawing them ever deeper into the word.

Players will be drawn into the interaction and between Booker and Elizabeth from the beginning.  It also has to be noted that Irrational did us a favor in building a beautiful character relationship without Elizabeth being a NPC that is useless and annoying.  Elizabeth is a great help to Booker and is self-sustaining.  The player interacts with her without having to keep a constant watch on her.  As the game unfolds, players grow attached to these characters with full anticipation to the game’s ending.

It should also be said that Irrational’s modification of the Unreal 3 Engine has provided us with a visually engaging game.  Whether in high-depth or standard, we gamers are immersed into Columbia.  Character animation, gameplay graphics, cuts scenes, and environments are beautiful made no matter where you are in the game.  Nothing is lacking at all in the animation!

Although the praise for BioShock Infinite is going strong with no end in sight, there is a time for words to stop and for gaming to begin.  That time is now!  Now, would you kindly go and immerse yourself into Columbia…

-Daniel Lee