BioShock Infinite Review: A Head in the Clouds

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Susan Arendt:

ccdohl:
I didn't like the other two, but this looks good. Do I need to have played the others?

But you should play BioShock (the first one, anyway) because it is brilllllllllyunnnnnnnt.

also because i think some of the bioshock infinite games came with the first two anyway

if i can get those extra tf2 hats i can just trade that for the value of the other games anyway

note: you can shut off the revive booths if you want to, it's in the options

not that you should need them if you're super duper careful

or if you don't like screwing around with daddies for amusement and perhaps profit

Just bought it! YES! Another good decision in life! :D

XMark:
I'm wondering... Bioshock was underwater, Bioshock Infinite is up in the sky. It would only be logical for the next "Shock" game to take place in space. Perhaps in the future. With, oh, I dunno, some kind of evil AI villain. :)

There. I see it. What you did. And yeah, they really should do a straight up remake of those two in a collection to release on the consoles. One massive game using the system set up from 2 as one continuous adventure.

OT: I have to wait a bit longer to get paid so I can finally get the damn thing. I HATE waiting.

DrunkOnEstus:

WarpZone:

**SNIP**
Frankly it's amazing we were able to communicate at all.

*Insert "clapping" gif here* . Do you have any friends who don't use the Internet? You should invite them in so that it can be a better place.
**SNIP**

Coelacanth spotted, tagged and released back into the wild.
You two. You two people made my freakin' week. Here's your damned hands:
image

What is that song played before the Escapist Emblem is shown?

ME WANTSA

jFr[e]ak93:
I pre-ordered this on Friday after reading one positive review. This has settled any doubt that it will be an A:CM or a SC. Bring on midnight!

Does anyone know if it's at all connected to the first two BioShocks? I never played 'em.

It wouldn't seem so. It takes place decades before and uses different political motivations. The original was based solidly on Objectivist philosophy and I refuse to talk about the second one because it's not much more than a cash in, in my opinion. The battle in Colombia is more between Fascists and Anarchists, as far as I can tell.

Well, now that that's taken care of, I already had to get this game for reasons that should be readily apparent. Now I seriously can't even wait to get my hands on it and disappear from the world for a little while. Fuck, I've got to work on Wednesday.

So, I figured... "You know what? I can wait a bit for Infinite. My 3DS's library is lacking, I'll go grab Luigi's Mansion instead."

But lo and behold, they buggered up the shipping in my area and were completely sold out.

I guess I was fated to get BioShock Infinite this week.

XMark:
I'm wondering... Bioshock was underwater, Bioshock Infinite is up in the sky. It would only be logical for the next "Shock" game to take place in space. Perhaps in the future. With, oh, I dunno, some kind of evil AI villain. :)

REMEMBER CITADEL!

I'm on the fence with this one, as Bioshock is one pf those game where terrible gameplay persuaded me to not to finish the game. I'll give it some time and see what it looks like.when the lustre fades. Plus I'm sick of playing as reprehensible protagonists who I want to die. It makes it hard to find the effort to play.

I'll definitely have to pick this up.

WarpZone:

MikeWehner:

"Way to advance gaming as a medium, guys. Sexist escort missions, here I come!" It's not an escort mission, I explicitly state that it's not an escort mission in the review. You are wrong.

"you just have to sit there and watch it happen because GAME WON'T LET YOU!" You are wrong.

"I'm guessing they were making it an actual sequel to Bioshock until Dishonored dropped." You are wrong.

"I honestly hope I'm wrong" Well congrats, because you ARE wrong!

Now stop being an Amazon-esque review bomber and shut your mouth before you play the game. <3

I watched the video again to make sure I didn't miss anything you said about Elizabeth. You talk a lot of about Elizabeth's abilities to do things like resupply and spawn in cover. You never explicitly state that it's not an Escort Mission. Maybe I should unpack what I think an "escort mission" is. An escort mission is when an NPC exists who is important to moving the plot forward, but is not a powerful combatant. This results in them dying and causing you to fail the mission unless you CONSTANTLY babysit them. Hell, even NPCs who CAN defend themselves tend to walk in front of your gun while you're trying to shoot in other games. So if you say Bioshock Infinite is avoiding this, then I say good for them. (With the caveat that non-annoying NPC AI is like enemies who use grenades intelligently. I'll believe it when I see it.) Glad I was wrong.

No contrived "you have to watch the bad guys kick the puppy and twirl their mustache, BECAUSE EMOTIONS!" moment? Glad I was wrong.

I admit the last thing I saw about Bioshock infinite prior to watching your video review was an old trailer where they show off the sky city and the lighting engine and everything is deserted and then a thing attacks the camera, so that led to the expectation that it would be like Bioshock 1 and 2 but with a sky city. Now that I stop and think about it, creating a ton of NPC dialogue and behaviors and clean clothing on all the models would take a lot of time, so it's ridiculous to think they were planning on making a destroyed city like Bioshock 1 and then changed it when Dishonored came out. So, glad I was wrong.

You can see why people would react this way, though, right? Prominent developers at industry events are explicitly telling us what we've suspected for years: that they are idiots who think polygons equals emotions. Games like Aliens: Colonial Marines are screaming "We are liars, we are liars, we are liars! Don't believe us!" every time they release another "vertical slice" bullshit video. This is the type of reaction that the entire industry is conspiring (albeit probably inadvertently) to engender.

Anyway, Kudos to you for responding the way you did. That takes guts. You're putting your credibility on the line to back up your statements. This doesn't strike me as the way a typical component of the industry hype machine would behave. Maybe you're even telling the truth. Maybe Bioshock really is some kinda transcendental emotional uber storytelling combat game.

Man, wouldn't that be nice? Honestly, I would settle for a decent first person shooter with a cool world and which doesn't trip all over itself in the gameplay. But they can't advertise that, they can't say "this game is pretty good, here's what's in it," they have to promise us the BEST GAME EVAR every single game that comes out.

So yeah. Hoping for the best. Sorry for being overly pessimistic. But you can see why my expectations would be so low, even after watching your review, right? Although I really can't think of anything you could have done differently. It's not like you could preface your review with "I know this sounds like hype, but no, the game actually IS good, honest." Actually by referencing the TV campaign you kinda sort of did do that. Didn't work. Huh.

But here is the real question: are there any extras like that "In Search of" spoof trailer that came out a while back?

Mayhaps a full episode?

(I know, wishful thinking)

Daystar Clarion:
Preordered on Steam ages ago :D

Steam says it's unlocked on the 25th.

It is currently the 25th.

steam y u no let me play bioshock infinite?!

It unlocks in 2 hours. at 9PM pacific time.

I very much doubt I will like Elizabeth, and I extremely doubt its that "existential." But ill give it a try all the same.

This wasn't a day 1 purchase or pre-order game for me until Steam decided to give away X-com for free.
To relatively new games I want to get for the price of one? Works for me.

I only hope Infinite actually lives up to the hype.

Bioshock 2 was really well received but was a very boring experience IMO.
It's best story elements didn't even meet up with the originals worst.

Three years. The reveal trailer was shown in 2010, and I have been waiting close to three years for this game. Now it's only a couple minutes away from loading. Time to turn down the lights and crank up the sound. Awesome.

Susan Arendt:

ccdohl:

Susan Arendt:

But you should play BioShock (the first one, anyway) because it is brilllllllllyunnnnnnnt.

I've heard. I actually started it, but I was put off by how the little booths would just bring me back to life over and over again when I died. Maybe I should just blaze through it on easy for the story.

Be aware that Easy is *very* easy for anyone with decent shooter skills. You could alternatively crank it up to Super Duper Incredihard if you want more challenge. But either way, yes, the story is definitely worth it, but fair warning - the final section of the game is pretty bad.

Susan, what changes in Super Duper Incredihard mode? We haven't played it, so it's not easy for us to see what you mean by "more challenge." Does Elizabeth just not revive you on the hardest difficulty, like how completely turning off the respawn chambers was in the first game? Or does she have like a limited number of revives? Or is it like System Shock 2 where money is finite and absolutely VITAL to advance?

Without one of those things being true, infinite respawns is still infinite respawns, and a kick in the wallet is still just a kick in the wallet.

It's annoying when I die several times in a row in Borderlands and lose most of my money, but I know in my heart of hearts I will eventually make it back from regular grinding and looting. Is that also the case in Bioshock Infinite? Is advancement FROM one checkpoint to the next before the enemies can respawn the actual challenge? Well, wait. It almost can't be, since you fall wherever you die and then Elizabeth runs over to you and revives you (I assume) where you fell. Unless everything fades to black and you revive in some nearby safehouse that acts as a checkpoint, you can respawn a million times gaining five feet every death until you reach the next story goal.

So please, elaborate. How exactly does the game manage to be challenging despite (what appears to be) an unlimited respawn system? If it's too complex to explain fully, then please describe one example of a point in the game where it took you a few deaths to advance on Uberhard Whatever You Said Mode, and what game-changing tactic finally got you past it?

WouldYouKindly:

jFr[e]ak93:
I pre-ordered this on Friday after reading one positive review. This has settled any doubt that it will be an A:CM or a SC. Bring on midnight!

Does anyone know if it's at all connected to the first two BioShocks? I never played 'em.

It wouldn't seem so. It takes place decades before and uses different political motivations. The original was based solidly on Objectivist philosophy and I refuse to talk about the second one because it's not much more than a cash in, in my opinion. The battle in Colombia is more between Fascists and Anarchists, as far as I can tell.

Did you play the sequel? Cause itīs actually quite good, some cool areas, very neat weapons and skills and the story isnīt all bad, though the voice acting is a bit on the weak side. In many ways i prefer it to Bioshock 1.

thephill:
If you buy it now it still counts as pre-order. its win-win. wait for the reviews to say its worth getting so you know you won't get burned and get the bonus goodies(free games!)

Wat. All of the typical GJ reviews will say it's worth getting, so wait for internet scrubs to voice their opinion before laying down any money.

WarpZone:

Susan Arendt:

ccdohl:

I've heard. I actually started it, but I was put off by how the little booths would just bring me back to life over and over again when I died. Maybe I should just blaze through it on easy for the story.

Be aware that Easy is *very* easy for anyone with decent shooter skills. You could alternatively crank it up to Super Duper Incredihard if you want more challenge. But either way, yes, the story is definitely worth it, but fair warning - the final section of the game is pretty bad.

Susan, what changes in Super Duper Incredihard mode? We haven't played it, so it's not easy for us to see what you mean by "more challenge." Does Elizabeth just not revive you on the hardest difficulty, like how completely turning off the respawn chambers was in the first game? Or does she have like a limited number of revives? Or is it like System Shock 2 where money is finite and absolutely VITAL to advance?

Without one of those things being true, infinite respawns is still infinite respawns, and a kick in the wallet is still just a kick in the wallet.

It's annoying when I die several times in a row in Borderlands and lose most of my money, but I know in my heart of hearts I will eventually make it back from regular grinding and looting. Is that also the case in Bioshock Infinite? Is advancement FROM one checkpoint to the next before the enemies can respawn the actual challenge? Well, wait. It almost can't be, since you fall wherever you die and then Elizabeth runs over to you and revives you (I assume) where you fell. Unless everything fades to black and you revive in some nearby safehouse that acts as a checkpoint, you can respawn a million times gaining five feet every death until you reach the next story goal.

So please, elaborate. How exactly does the game manage to be challenging despite (what appears to be) an unlimited respawn system? If it's too complex to explain fully, then please describe one example of a point in the game where it took you a few deaths to advance on Uberhard Whatever You Said Mode, and what game-changing tactic finally got you past it?

I was referring to the original BioShock, not Infinite.

Susan Arendt:

I was referring to the original BioShock, not Infinite.

Oh, okay. So it sounds like there's no cap or limit on revives. She just keeps reviving you, and you lose a small amount of money each time. Is this correct?

Also I'm assuming by default these days, that there is an infinite amount of money available in the game. For example, by fighting some infinitely respawning easy enemies over and over again, you could easily grind money if you need it for the next upgrade because you died too much previously. Is this correct?

(Captcha: "easy as cake." wow. just wow.)

SoMuchSpace:
Aaannnd poor Tomb raider is overshadowed by this pseudo-philosophical tripe

Don't get me wrong.I am sure the game is enjoyable.And moreover, i will have fun with it.But the philosophy in the bioshock series never did anything to me, honestly.And i think the series could be better off without it.Bioshock 2 had great potential (the cult of Eleanor and all) but failed miserably, it merely wallowed in it's predecessor's IDENTICAL gameplay.

Tomb Raider on the other hand is just a great cinematic survivor story, that is really touching.It will be lucky to win anything considering how each reviewer is jizzing their pants.This is saddening to me, but oh well.At least i have a good game to play.No one will ever understand what crystal dynamics has done, and how far TR itself has come.

Also "CHECK UR PULSE IF U DON"T THING TEH GAMEZZZZ IS OSUMMM???" is something i've yet to see any professional review ever say.Good job escapist.

Oh, I see. I'm not allowed to like Infinite because that's petting the pseudo-intellectual crowd in the right side of the proverbial fur, but I should jump for Tomb Raider's Battered Woman fetish the first chance I get?

I tried Tomb Raider. Kudos to Crystal Dynamics for making a relatable chapter of Croft's life and for making *her* physically relatable - but honestly? All I got was "Look! Look at how we're hitting her! We're like Sam Raimi when he keeps bashing Bruce Campbell with tree leaves and a fake chainsaw, off-screen! WE TORTURE OUR HEROINE SO YOU CARE! PLEASE, PLAYER! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, CARE FOR HER OR ELSE WE'LL HAVE TO DECAPITATE HER IN THE NEXT DEATH CUTSCENE!"

Yeah, no.

WarpZone:

Susan Arendt:

I was referring to the original BioShock, not Infinite.

Oh, okay. So it sounds like there's no cap or limit on revives. She just keeps reviving you, and you lose a small amount of money each time. Is this correct?

Also I'm assuming by default these days, that there is an infinite amount of money available in the game. For example, by fighting some infinitely respawning easy enemies over and over again, you could easily grind money if you need it for the next upgrade because you died too much previously. Is this correct?

(Captcha: "easy as cake." wow. just wow.)

I haven't played Infinite, so I can't answer any questions about it.

chozo_hybrid:

jFr[e]ak93:
I pre-ordered this on Friday after reading one positive review. This has settled any doubt that it will be an A:CM or a SC. Bring on midnight!

Does anyone know if it's at all connected to the first two BioShocks? I never played 'em.

Yeah, it's good to hear. What's SC? Also, no, it's not connected to the first two, it's a spiritual successor.

Looking at the Steam page, it's covered in review scores, kinda tacky.

SC is Sim City. Not that Infinite was ever going to be crashing servers. But having the same AI problems would royally suck.

Can't wait to play this.

Ah, okay. I got it now. Sorry for bothering you, Susan. When you jumped into the conversation, it distracted me.

MikeWehner:
BioShock Infinite Review: A Head in the Clouds

Columbia is nothing like Rapture, and that's a very good thing.

Read Full Article

Mike Wehner:

1: When your health reaches zero, does Elizabeth revive you in the same spot where you died?

2: Are there a limit to the number of times Elizabeth will revive you before it's Game Over and you lose some sort of progress?

3: When Elizabeth revives you, do the enemies you were fighting heal/respawn?

4: On average, how long does it take for Elizabeth to revive you after your health reaches zero?

5: Is it possible to play the game into a state where beating the game becomes impossible as a result of dying too much?

6: What, if anything, makes cunning planning and skilled execution a more optimal strategy for beating the game than just blasting your way through the fights without paying attention to whether or not the player dies a lot?

7: What extrinsic rewards are there for dying less? (For example, getting 100% completion like in Kirby's Epic Yarn?)

8: Is there anything else you think I should know about the mechanics and dynamics of the revival system in Bioshock Infinite, which would make the game more appealing to someone who thinks the Vita Chambers made Bioshock "too easy?"

If you cherry-pick which of the previous questions to answer, the people reading this will probably assume that you were hiding something unflattering about the game. I threw you some tomatoes at the end there to make it easy for you to set the record straight if you feel like honest answers to the earlier questions paint the game in too negative a light. It is to your advantage to answer all of the questions. And it definitely helps your readers to have an accurate understanding of how the newest Bioshock game handles the issue of challenge and difficulty.

I was able to "Pre-load" the game on Steam last night. I convinced myself I just wanted a taste of the game and the setting so I began to play when it unlocked at 1200 EST.

My very first impression of the game is that it simply gorgeous, especially with the light diffusion settings and details turned on. This may be the game that causes me to get a 120hz monitor.

The opening of the game is organic, allowing players to wander about, poke around, and gives a general objective, but doesn't push you along. Some may not like the lack of structure at the outset, but I think, if anything, it encourages that exploration and allows the game to show off its graphical chops. I spent more than an hour before progressing the story, mimicking the reverence of the characters I met along the way. I overheard conversations, explored the world around me and tried my best to "blend in" I can't think of any time in a game that I've tried to do that. I wanted to be a part of that world because I knew that the peaceful setting wouldn't last. I took it slow; I meandered down streets and browsed shops, stood and listened with crowds to various music performances (one of which was an awesome surprise), eavesdropped on people in cafes and park benches, and (because I am a pack rat)I picked up everything I could.

Here's something strange: in one of those shops, the proprietor was out and left an honor system pay basket. I found myself actually leaving money in it for the things I picked up, wondering if the other browsers would have noticed my theft and I decided not to chance it.

As I aimlessly roamed around I began to wonder whether the visuals I was seeing were an accurate representation of the world circa 1912 or if it was a product of my previously held assumptions about the era. I had an idea in my mind of the "salad days" of America at the turn of the 20th century; of patriotic bunting and white marble, of broad expanses of village greens with picnickers with parasols, and of an abundance of flowers, birds, and butterflies. The game certainly did not disappoint on that front, serving these pastoral images all under a beautiful sunny sky replete with fluffy white clouds. I was inclined to believe I was indeed in "heaven."

I was loathe to leave this beatific postcard, but I knew it must end: I decided to progress the game. The first twist in the game hit me by surprise, was very uncomfortable, and changed this world in an instant. As I progressed I began to see the darkness hiding in all this light and it made the setting all the more poignant in stark contrast to the tone. The game doesn't always push these inconsistencies in your face; you have to find them, but when you do, the world will begin fray at the edges and tarnish.

I ended up staying up till 3:44, having long since abandoned my pretense of getting "just a taste." I didn't need that much sleep, right? That's what caffeine is for! I am now eagerly anticipating being able to play when I get home. I can't remember the last time I decided to forgo sleep for a video game. Oh wait, it was Bioshock. Figures.

WarpZone:
Ah, okay. I got it now. Sorry for bothering you, Susan. When you jumped into the conversation, it distracted me.

Mike Wehner:

1: When your health reaches zero, does Elizabeth revive you in the same spot where you died?

2: Are there a limit to the number of times Elizabeth will revive you before it's Game Over and you lose some sort of progress?

3: When Elizabeth revives you, do the enemies you were fighting heal/respawn?

4: On average, how long does it take for Elizabeth to revive you after your health reaches zero?

5: Is it possible to play the game into a state where beating the game becomes impossible as a result of dying too much?

6: What, if anything, makes cunning planning and skilled execution a more optimal strategy for beating the game than just blasting your way through the fights without paying attention to whether or not the player dies a lot?

7: What extrinsic rewards are there for dying less? (For example, getting 100% completion like in Kirby's Epic Yarn?)

8: Is there anything else you think I should know about the mechanics and dynamics of the revival system in Bioshock Infinite, which would make the game more appealing to someone who thinks the Vita Chambers made Bioshock "too easy?"

If you cherry-pick which of the previous questions to answer, the people reading this will probably assume that you were hiding something unflattering about the game. I threw you some tomatoes at the end there to make it easy for you to set the record straight if you feel like honest answers to the earlier questions paint the game in too negative a light. It is to your advantage to answer all of the questions. And it definitely helps your readers to have an accurate understanding of how the newest Bioshock game handles the issue of challenge and difficulty.

Sweet baby jesus, I'm sitting here waiting for a GDC panel to start and I can't believe I'm actually going to answer all of these, but here it goes.

1. Sometimes. I have no idea what determines whether or not she revives you. In my case, she failed to revive me more often than not. If she doesn't revive you, you respawn in a manner similar to the original bioshock, only this time instead of vita chambers, it's just a virtual room that you walk out of.

2. Like I said above, she doesn't seem to have a set pattern, it might just be if she's close enough to get to you in time.

3. After you respawn (whether by elizabeth healing you, or respawning in the virtual room) the enemies you were fighting get full health (or close to it) and you obviously lose all of the ammo/salts you wasted fighting them the first time.

4. Again, I have no idea how the game determines whether or not she revives you. In my playthrough I died probably 10 times. She came to the rescue maybe 3 of those times.

5. If you waste all your ammo/salt in the first fight, and spawn back, you need to scavenge to find stuff to fight with (or pray that elizabeth has found something useful for you). If you can't make it happen the second time, you can try a third time and a fourth and a fifth, but you're going to have less resources to use each time. You could play it into a corner and have to restart an entire section or level if you can't complete a fight.

6. If you die once, the next time you take on those enemies (whether it be by an elizabeth revive or the virtual door method) things get a lot harder. Plus the battles themselves are not short, and you can waste a good 15 minutes on a fight and end up losing, which is a pain in the ass.

7. I'm not sure, but i imagine there are trophies/acheivements for doing this (the review build didn't let me browse locked rewards like this), but that's about it I guess.

8. BioShock as a series has always been about the story. The games themselves are not particularly difficult, and if that's a problem for you, then you'll probably not like the fact that you can be revived and so on. There's nothing I can say about that other than that it doesn't bother me whatsoever. That said, Infinite is significantly more difficult on normal difficulty (IMO) than either BioShock 1 or 2. Your health can disappear in a second. You do not have the ability to store and hold health boosts like you could in Bio 1 and 2 (you can't just spam a "heal" button when you get low, because there is no such button, you have X amount of health and X amount of shield, and that is IT, until you find more on your own).

MikeWehner:

Sweet baby jesus, I'm sitting here waiting for a GDC panel to start and I can't believe I'm actually going to answer all of these, but here it goes.

*slow clap*

Sounds good to me, guys.

Mike, you've been awesome. Beyond awesome, in fact. Go kick ass at GDC!

MrBaskerville:
It really does sound interesting except for one little detail, the revival system. From all iīve read it sounds like a really cool and fun game with plenty of choices, but the revival system just makes me regret my preorder. In the worst case scenario Itīs like with Bioshock back when it orignally launched, i loved everyting about it but the Vita Chambers desstroyed all tension and i ended up selling the game. Hopefully the revival stuff is better balanced in this game, because it sounds like itīs too easy to come back to life with only minor penalties.

Hope the information in Mike's previous post helps. :)

MikeWehner:

1. Sometimes. I have no idea what determines whether or not she revives you. In my case, she failed to revive me more often than not. If she doesn't revive you, you respawn in a manner similar to the original bioshock, only this time instead of vita chambers, it's just a virtual room that you walk out of.

I'm pretty sure that it depends on whether Elizabeth is with you or not. The room appears only when she isn't there to help you, whereas in all other times she helps you to your feet.

In both cases you it makes no difference and you "wake up" about 10-15 feet away, so you have time to regroup and don't get immediately mowed down by enemies.

WarpZone:
4: On average, about how long does it take for your to be revived after your health reaches zero?

2-3 seconds? It's pretty fast and doesn't get annoying.

WarpZone:
6: What, if anything, makes cunning planning and skilled execution a more optimal strategy for beating the game than just blasting your way through the fights without paying attention to whether or not the player dies a lot?

Honestly? Nothing, except for bruised pride. Especially in the beginning I died 3-4 times almost on the same spot and those enemies weren't even particulary numerous or strong! It takes some time to get to know the layout, recognize where you can find cover and how the enemy AI works.

When you do get it right, it's immensely satisfying.

WarpZone:
8: Is there anything else you think I should know about the mechanics and dynamics of the revival system in Bioshock Infinite, which would make the game more appealing to someone who thinks the Vita Chambers made Bioshock "too easy?

Bioshock 1 didn't have even a small fraction battle strategy that Bioshock Infinite has - even if you ignore mechanics like the Tears and Skyrails. You die very easily on Hard and you can't just pop a health potion to heal yourself. You either run or try scavenging on the move, which might get you killed or save your life.

The enemies are aggressive, but not mindlessly charging at you. The levels are always designed that they can flank you, flush you from your hiding spot and then you are running into enemy fire or turrets.

I have no clue how the 1999 difficulty works and gonna try it out as soon as I finish the game.

Anyone else think that the times Elizabeth throws supplies to you are so predictable that it sort of ruins your immersion?
I always expect her to give me some money after I exit a shop, or give me some salts if I'm low (same with health). Sometimes if I was in a bad spot I would just go into cover and wait for her to throw something to me (she has super-human accuracy with her throwing skills). They should have just made the three things she gave you randomized with greater intervals instead of making them happen at certain times.

ToastiestZombie:
Anyone else think that the times Elizabeth throws supplies to you are so predictable that it sort of ruins your immersion?
I always expect her to give me some money after I exit a shop, or give me some salts if I'm low (same with health). Sometimes if I was in a bad spot I would just go into cover and wait for her to throw something to me (she has super-human accuracy with her throwing skills). They should have just made the three things she gave you randomized with greater intervals instead of making them happen at certain times.

Except that later in the game, she has the ability to use Tears to teleport in giant robots or chest-high walls upon demand. It makes sense that, before she unlocks that ability, she has the ability to teleport in (or at least detect, and then run and grab) some nearby salts or money.

If you were playing a 2 player game, would you expect them to bring you completely random items, or the nearest item that you were burning through? I know that when I'm playing Tekkit (a Minecraft mod,) with a good crew, we coordinate our efforts. Our engineers start using a lot of copper, the dedicated miners and spelunkers start focusing on finding copper.

Well that was a bit worrying. Whole long gameplay description, without actually saying if core gameplay was any good or not. Considering core gameplay in the original Bioshock was *by far* the game's weakest aspect, this doesn't exactly inspire much confidence.

WarpZone:

ToastiestZombie:
Anyone else think that the times Elizabeth throws supplies to you are so predictable that it sort of ruins your immersion?
I always expect her to give me some money after I exit a shop, or give me some salts if I'm low (same with health). Sometimes if I was in a bad spot I would just go into cover and wait for her to throw something to me (she has super-human accuracy with her throwing skills). They should have just made the three things she gave you randomized with greater intervals instead of making them happen at certain times.

Except that later in the game, she has the ability to use Tears to teleport in giant robots or chest-high walls upon demand. It makes sense that, before she unlocks that ability, she has the ability to teleport in (or at least detect, and then run and grab) some nearby salts or money.

If you were playing a 2 player game, would you expect them to bring you completely random items, or the nearest item that you were burning through? I know that when I'm playing Tekkit (a Minecraft mod,) with a good crew, we coordinate our efforts. Our engineers start using a lot of copper, the dedicated miners and spelunkers start focusing on finding copper.

Elizabeth still gives you supplies when you unlock the tears, and a lot of the time she says something along the lines of "I found this!". It's pretty clear she's not getting them through tears, as she can only open one tear at a time yet she can give you some salts or health whilst you have a tear open. I find it un-immersive how she always seems to say "I just found this" when she gives me a health pack, right when I'm close to death. It's a very minor gripe, so I can't be asked to argue it further. I'm going to go back to actually playing the damn game.

csoloist:
Well that was a bit worrying. Whole long gameplay description, without actually saying if core gameplay was any good or not. Considering core gameplay in the original Bioshock was *by far* the game's weakest aspect, this doesn't exactly inspire much confidence.

Karoshi and MikeWehner's comments seem to suggest good risk schedules and difficulty (despite the lack of comment on it earlier,) and the video certainly seems to suggest good movement and gunplay. "Core gameplay" is a broad topic, with many discrete working parts, and just saying "the gameplay is good" doesn't tell the reader much unless you also tell them WHY you thought it was good.

I felt Mike's review was scanty in places. My gut instinct was to assume, like you did, that the missing information implied he was hiding something. But after asking more detailed questions and having them answered, my expectations have improved.

No review is ever going to be perfect, even if it's well written. But by answering pointed questions after the review, Mike has given me a better understanding of what to expect from the game. To me, that inspires more confidence than if he'd just said "The core gameplay is good" in the review.

If you still don't know whether Bioshock Infinity improves upon what you didn't like about the original Bioshock, I encourage you to ask your own focused, pointed questions about specific features.

Looks like GDC is keeping Mike busy, but I'm sure Karoshi and others who have played the game will be willing to jump in with answers. The trick is to ask factual questions like "Does the enemy stupidly run straight towards you and get stuck on walls?" instead of subjective questions like "Is the game fun?"

ccdohl:

I've heard. I actually started it, but I was put off by how the little booths would just bring me back to life over and over again when I died. Maybe I should just blaze through it on easy for the story.

You can turn off the Vita Chambers.

OT: I've had this preordered for well over a year, glad to see it's been getting such good press. Loved both Bioshock games when I finally got around to playing them, despite the few bugbears I had about each of them, so hopefully this will be able to grab me the same way.

Of course the game had to be released while I'm on my easter vacation. Fucking brilliant!

shrekfan246:

You can turn off the Vita Chambers.

Yes, that technically solves the problem of the Vita Chambers making the game too easy, but it does so in the cheapest, lamest, least interesting way.

I refer you to the late, great Antisocialfatman for his take on the subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBJUJXOxztE

WarpZone:

shrekfan246:

You can turn off the Vita Chambers.

Yes, that technically solves the problem of the Vita Chambers making the game too easy, but it does so in the cheapest, lamest, least interesting way.

I refer you to the late, great Antisocialfatman for his take on the subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBJUJXOxztE

... okay?

I didn't actually die often enough for the Vita Chambers to really "make the game too easy" anyway, and if I did I was glad they were there because my alternative would've been going back to the start of an entire area because I usually forgot to manually save, and autosaves only happened after area transitions. They were basically just checkpoints like every other game uses these days, just given an in-game representation instead of a simple text or icon pop-up that says "Checkpoint Saved".

Not really sure what the problem is, especially since the original guy I quoted said he was just put off by them simply being there. And I don't really want to spend fifty minutes watching a five-part Youtube video that's completely slagging something off for 'being a rip-off' of a much earlier game made by the same company. I see that argument often enough on these forums.

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