A BioShock Infinite Primer: Pt. II

A BioShock Infinite Primer: Pt. II

More real-life events you need to know before diving into Infinite.

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Once again very interesting Robert I was looking forward to this after last weeks excellent Article. As a European this is an area of American History that I am completely ignorant of.

I must go read up on the Boxer rebellion again now...

Thank you!

Great read! I especially liked "Captains of Industry" and found Finkton to be the most developed part of the game.

Though I was at first disappointed when I saw it, because I was hoping that the next Bioshock game would be more focused around industrialization and the exploitation of human labor after reading up about Fordlândia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fordl%C3%A2ndia

A city built in the Amazon jungle by Henry Ford that sought to "Americanize" the native labor force who worked hard hours harvesting rubber and eventually rebelled, bringing the city to ruin. If that didn't inspire Levine to create Bioshock, I really don't know what did. I doubt we'll see another new Bioshock game, and it probably won't be this one because it seems to have been fully explored with Infinite.

Scribblesense:
Great read! I especially liked "Captains of Industry" and found Finkton to be the most developed part of the game.

Yeah, I loved the Fink segments. He made a great character, and the whole factory/city of Finkton was a really amazing setpiece that brought home a lot of the themes of the game.

I doubt we'll see another new Bioshock game, and it probably won't be this one because it seems to have been fully explored with Infinite.

Eh, I wouldn't be too sure about that. Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite both explored big ideas and concepts, but they were differet ideas and concepts. Ryan believed that a man was entitled to the fruits of his labor, whereas as Columbia was framed as all work being in service of the greater society. For example, there's a bit where you find out that Comstock gets like a 30% cut of everything, which Ryan would've been very opposed to.

So while some of the themes of an isolated city with an extreme philosophy being allowed to develop unhindered are shared, much of the core philosophies at play in the two games are different. But there's a lot of other extremist philosophies out there in the world for someone with Levine's talents to play with...so I don't think we've seen the last of Bioshock at all.

I was hoping he would talk about the captains of industry. I thought Fink could have been a more actualized character, but that could be my familiarity with the big business of the time through reading about it and the fact that Andrew Ryan was also a somewhat similar man (in the business sense, not religious). Though, Fink did say in an audiolog that he "didn't have time for all the prophecy business" and that "faith is a commodity"

I'm also glad ties to the past were mentioned. The character of Preston E. Downes was fantastic. His part in the story, while small, tied into Booker's past and the West.

Great job, Rob.

Hooray for sequels! Awesome article, as always.

A very well researched article but dear god i think it safe to say this proves the notion that humans are bastards/monsters in everysense of the word.

lovely read

Reminds me of my history classes at Virginia Tech - industrial revolution work conditions were horrible.

Although IMO Fink and Finkton was... underused. Sure we got a great impression of the place, but IMO it could have been used better - as is it mainly feels like padding to the game since its just a huge glorified fetch-quest you're doing there.

A game set entirely in Finkton where you had to avoid company security, abusive overseers, strike busters - trying to survive the vox populi rebellion without getting killed from suicide missions and whatnot (which will only get due to your reluctance to kill yourself for the cause)

now that'd be a fun game

Especially the Boxer part was very enlightening for me, but I didn't know much about the American industrialization either.

Doctor Proctor:
Eh, I wouldn't be too sure about that. Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite both explored big ideas and concepts, but they were differet ideas and concepts. Ryan believed that a man was entitled to the fruits of his labor, whereas as Columbia was framed as all work being in service of the greater society. For example, there's a bit where you find out that Comstock gets like a 30% cut of everything, which Ryan would've been very opposed to.

By the way, it was not 30% but a 50% cut. Booker just responded to that "I really should get into the Prophet business."

Rather ironic, actually...

Karoshi:
Especially the Boxer part was very enlightening for me, but I didn't know much about the American industrialization either.

Doctor Proctor:
Eh, I wouldn't be too sure about that. Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite both explored big ideas and concepts, but they were differet ideas and concepts. Ryan believed that a man was entitled to the fruits of his labor, whereas as Columbia was framed as all work being in service of the greater society. For example, there's a bit where you find out that Comstock gets like a 30% cut of everything, which Ryan would've been very opposed to.

By the way, it was not 30% but a 50% cut. Booker just responded to that "I really should get into the Prophet business."

Rather ironic, actually...

Well, you know what they say: Prophet rhymes with profit.

Excellent piece. I may be wrong, but I believe that the progressive royal family member who Empress Dowager Cixi had imprisoned was her son, not her husband.

Robert Rath:
Around the late 1890s, things finally boiled over. Draught led to widespread population movement and civil unrest.

So, the population moved to where the beer was, and then became a drunk and unruly mob? Just think, they could have avoided all that if they had just distributed the beer to where the people were, rather than keeping it all in one place!

Norix596:
Excellent piece. I may be wrong, but I believe that the progressive royal family member who Empress Dowager Cixi had imprisoned was her son, not her husband.

Actually we're both wrong: it was her nephew, whom she installed after her son died. Thanks for pointing this out, I'll look into having it changed.

Aardvaarkman:

Robert Rath:
Around the late 1890s, things finally boiled over. Draught led to widespread population movement and civil unrest.

So, the population moved to where the beer was, and then became a drunk and unruly mob? Just think, they could have avoided all that if they had just distributed the beer to where the people were, rather than keeping it all in one place!

Best. Typo. Ever. Regardless of awesome factor, I'll have it fixed.

Of course, in America we actually did have a popular uprising over alcohol...

EDIT: In an interesting side note, some historians have suggested that the introduction of coffee to Europe helped spur the Enlightenment. 18th century Europeans - at least the kind that had a tendency to make artistic and scientific innovations or reform/topple governments - tended to hang out at cafés all day swilling the brown stuff. Some theories hold that chronic caffeine intake not only helped the spread of new ideas in late-night debates, but also made people a little more revolutionary than usual.

Don't know if that's true, but it's a fun thought.

Robert Rath:

Aardvaarkman:

Robert Rath:
Around the late 1890s, things finally boiled over. Draught led to widespread population movement and civil unrest.

So, the population moved to where the beer was, and then became a drunk and unruly mob? Just think, they could have avoided all that if they had just distributed the beer to where the people were, rather than keeping it all in one place!

Best. Typo. Ever. Regardless of awesome factor, I'll have it fixed.

Got ya covered!

 

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