No, BioShock Infinite's Ending Doesn't Suck

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chikusho:

Astro:

Excuse me, I'll try to be more clear. How does depth manifest itself in BioShock: Infinite, e.g., in what way do the present themes achieve depth?

1337mokro:

Nothing this guy just equates the fact Bioshock has those things TO depth. There is no depth in those subjects just that they have them and therefore it is deep according to what he thinks is depth.

Or, well, the fact that those themes are represented serve as a basis for discussion on how they interact within themselves as well as with each other. Ultimately Breaking them down, piecing together underlying messages and applying them to real world influences and situations.

You are asking "what is deep about this" while nonchalantly disregarding all of the things being written and discussed all over the internet right now, so putting together an answer for you on that question would end up being an even bigger waste of time.

So you're basically saying "I could explain it, but you just won't get it."

Can you get any more transparent? You do understand that is basically the 5 year-old approach when they don't know something. Is to allude that the person asking the question would not understand the answer. It also quite apparent that Bioshock Infinite does absolutely nothing with those themes except display them. We see slavery, we see religious zealoutry, we see a class struggle, but we learn nothing about those things.

We don't delve into what the characters think about those issues, what they mean to them, what it means to the other characters, why they believe what they do, the list goes on. You say "all the other things being said on the internet about them" like what? You quite quickly failed to give even a single quote and my entire discussion about the themes of Infinite with someone else has failed to yield anything regarding those themes, he was quite happy to get to the ending and discuss only that part as quickly as possible.

It seems to me what is being said about those themes is that Bioshock shows them. Yes it does. That's all it does.

I don't think you need to do much digging to get to the "deeper" message behind slavery. I think mister Mackey said it best. "It's bad mkay" it's even worse when you think about what it is also used for, it's basically used to give us Saturday morning cartoon villains that we won't feel bad about when we jam a rotary saw up their chest cavity,

Now instead of reading verbatim from the idiots guide to interpretation why not actually tell us how these themes play a role and influence the characters and story. Rather than just being sideshow attractions. After all you apparently are privy to the internet's secret debate about the subversive elements and influences these themes bring so why not share?

1337mokro:
So you're basically saying "I could explain it, but you just won't get it."

I can't speak for the person you were replying to, but from my past interactions with you, and observations of your other "discussions," it's not really worth it. You seem to consistently ignore the opinions and arguments of others, and just assert that you are right.

What's the point? Whenever somebody else says something, you just dismiss it and continue on the same rant.

Aardvaarkman:

1337mokro:
So you're basically saying "I could explain it, but you just won't get it."

I can't speak for the person you were replying to, but from my past interactions with you, and observations of your other "discussions," it's not really worth it. You seem to consistently ignore the opinions and arguments of others, and just assert that you are right.

What's the point? Whenever somebody else says something, you just dismiss it and continue on the same rant.

Though I wonder why you seem to think that. Have you seen them admit points and given any ground? No, they just repeated over and over the same stuff. One conversation eventually devolved into pure speculation about the inner workings of the multiverse that even the game has no idea actually functions.

Oh sure you can now go on to say "Oh but I am right, so you should have given me a point for every argument" but really what's the point here? It's just a shift of perception and what you just said applies from my point of view as well.

It's kind of the pot calling the kettle black here. When I asked them to explain how they saw the themes were explored they didn't even make an initial attempt at answering they just dodged it. Wanting to get to the ending as quickly as possible to discuss that part which is filled with metaphysical bullshit that all comes down to opinion.

It's basically what allot of people are doing ignoring everything but the last 20 minutes of story. They ignore the bad gameplay, the out of place elements, the strange gear shifts in tone, the "Bioshock had it so we have to put it in somewhere" elements that are scattered around Columbia and the fact you could have made this game into an adventure game with in total maybe 3 gun fights and have lost absolutely nothing in terms of story and characters.

If the story and characters are all people seem to care about... then why not?

Again, not really a mature answer, but more of a 5 year old answer that supposes first that a discussion about people's opinions about a game has a Right answer and that one party is the sole instigator because it does not align with your opinion.

Just got done with the game and I give a great big...meh. It's decent. Kinda, I guess. I mean, I was half-way through and was wondering when it was going to end, which can't be a good sign. Then I got to the ending and Yahtzee was right, lots of up-the-butt action. My eyes nearly rolled out of their sockets. I did like how they setup a very tropish twist for the ending, that was very easy to predict for anyone paying attention btw, "revealed" it, then quickly zigged again. Too bad the zig was weak pretty much fell flat for me.(Edit: Actually, reverse that. The weak twist came first, the "No shit sherlock" twist was second.) I thought the little twists in the middle of the game were way more entertaining than the big ones at the end. But, they tried doing something new with the narrative. They get some points for that.

As far as the sheer amount of violence, I thought it was a delicious juxtaposition to the clean and sterile appearance of the city in the beginning. It jarred me actually, but in a good way.

1337mokro:
They ignore the bad gameplay, the out of place elements, the strange gear shifts in tone, the "Bioshock had it so we have to put it in somewhere" elements that are scattered around Columbia and the fact you could have made this game into an adventure game with in total maybe 3 gun fights and have lost absolutely nothing in terms of story and characters.

Well, I'm not ignoring that - but it's not really the topic at hand, is it? The article we are talking about specifically discusses the ending, not the gameplay in general. I thought the gameplay was pretty average, but the story was decent enough.

In the other thread, you certainly said some very strange things, which I don't think are worth arguing about, because you're being so stubborn and keep changing the topic. Like how you think there didn't need to be racism or religion in the story, just... because?

Oh sure you can now go on to say "Oh but I am right, so you should have given me a point for every argument"

That's supremely ironic. Can you point out anywhere that I simply said "I'm right"? That seems to be more like what you're doing when you dismiss different opinions.

Again, not really a mature answer, but more of a 5 year old answer that supposes first that a discussion about people's opinions about a game has a Right answer and that one party is the sole instigator because it does not align with your opinion.

Yeah, this doesn't help, when you call people 5-year-olds, when they are just trying to have a discussion. And that's something that seems to come up again and again in your posts - everybody else isn't as smart as you, and you're just right.

Also see where you mockingly asked "how old are you?" of someone in one of your posts. Not a very mature way to debate.

I really liked infinite's story.
I really liked it's ending.

However, my problem with the ending is it was a fucking massive info dump. Bioshock sort of slowly pulled back the curtain on what was happening more and more with a great twist I didn't see coming. Not to say infinite didn't drop its fair share of of hints as I very early on figured there was some sort of time travel involved. I also noticed this game started at a lighthouse as well, just like Bioshock. I thought it was just a sort of weird nod to the first game, but it was so much more.

1337mokro:
But I think we are quite done here. We've talked to a point where we basically have you on one side of a tear and me on another. I say enjoy your game and I hope that you one day will actually re-examine this game once the adoration for it wears off. Maybe when you find your next Greatest Game Story Ever!

See, it wasn't just enough for you to have a discussion, was it? You had to go and make it personal. Well, fine, this is what I think of you as a person: You are so obsessed with the need to be right that you had to go negative; throw some personal insults into the mix. You couldn't just let me have my opinion and keep your own. No, you need to prove to me how your's is superior, because nobody other than you can be right. Nobody other than you can judge a game from the get-go. No, I need to sit in my corner and think about it for a decade before I, as a stupid person, can formulate my own ideas.
But speaking of intelligence, I'm not saying you need to know anything about literature, that's fine, but spouting out random things like "post-modern-neo-classisitical-hellenian-ming-ching" is really just an insult to yourself. (For one post-modernism and neoclassicism are two different things and for another Bioshock Infinite is definitely a post-modernist work.) And again, it's fine if you don't know anything about the terminology, but there's no need to criticize me if I do.
One thing you were right about, however, we are done here.

Farther than stars:

The fact that you're not listening to me became fairly obvious a while ago. For the third time: "Depth is basically just the amount of themes that a piece explores, the extent to which it explores them and the amount of layers that that generates."

No. Depth is not "amount of themes". A story can be deep whilst having one theme, if it explores that theme in detail. That's what depth actually is, the detail in which themes are explored, the number of perspectives on a single theme it shows and allows the reader, through experiencing them in the narrative, to consider.

Take, for instance, Foucault's Pendulum. That's a story with real depth, even though it only has one real central theme, (it's about what attracts people to secret societies and hidden "ultimate" truths) the fact that it explores so many facets of that theme in the many characters in the book, not only the three central ones (who are to varying degrees outsiders drawn in, but each for different reasons), but also the many incidental characters who are genuine "truth" seekers, is what gives it depth. (It's also genuinely postmodern, in that the structure of the narrative mirrors the holistic nature of the game the main characters play)

You've confused breadth with depth. Having lots of "themes" but a shallow treatment of each one isn't depth.

Bioshock Infinite doesn't deal in detail with any of the themes it touches on, it doesn't have depth.

It is not the violence that I find bad. In fact I want more of it and even bloodier and more absurd until it goes to that "im scared of myself/its sick" part of the gore slider. WHat I HATE is how MANY enemies the game throws at you and how STUPID they are. It detracts from both atmosphere and ideology by making the majority of the enemies arcade-like and in absurd numbers and just ruins the atmosphere. It also makes them feel less than well, human. That is VERY bad. It is one of Infinte's greatest problems.

Well yeah, in the original Bioshock it was part of the universe that the enemies were actually insane because they were all spliced up to fuck.

In Infinite they're supposedly people, but they're all suicidally heroic in the face of the walking mincing machine that is Booker DeWitt.

Farther than stars:

1337mokro:
But I think we are quite done here. We've talked to a point where we basically have you on one side of a tear and me on another. I say enjoy your game and I hope that you one day will actually re-examine this game once the adoration for it wears off. Maybe when you find your next Greatest Game Story Ever!

See, it wasn't just enough for you to have a discussion, was it? You had to go and make it personal. Well, fine, this is what I think of you as a person: You are so obsessed with the need to be right that you had to go negative; throw some personal insults into the mix. You couldn't just let me have my opinion and keep your own. No, you need to prove to me how your's is superior, because nobody other than you can be right. Nobody other than you can judge a game from the get-go. No, I need to sit in my corner and think about it for a decade before I, as a stupid person, can formulate my own ideas.
But speaking of intelligence, I'm not saying you need to know anything about literature, that's fine, but spouting out random things like "post-modern-neo-classisitical-hellenian-ming-ching" is really just an insult to yourself. (For one post-modernism and neoclassicism are two different things and for another Bioshock Infinite is definitely a post-modernist work.) And again, it's fine if you don't know anything about the terminology, but there's no need to criticize me if I do.
One thing you were right about, however, we are done here.

I think you just insulted yourself by not getting the joke when I said "post-modern-neo-classisitical-hellenian-ming-ching". You see that was a gibberish word mocking your constant attempts at going into the discussion about how people interpret the game. For all your attempts at literary analyses you don't seem to get when I basically said "I do not care how you interpret the story". I don't quite get how but apparently I have to spell it out.

The opinion someone has about this game DOES NOT MATTER. There is enough wrong with it story structure wise, world wise, gameplay wise, simple theoretical science wise to talk about objectively rather than go into opinion flaming.

What I cared to hear from you was:

1: How the themes in this game were supposedly explored, how did they impact the story and characters.
2: How the facade of depth seems to have people fooled simply by asking questions, just asking questions by the way it never bothers giving it's own opinion on anything.
3: Why you keep handwaving plotholes when it is the authors responsibility not to have these in the story. You see this did not need to be a time travel story it could have been a simple story about a man getting his estranged daughter back, through that action redeeming himself and making peace with his past. By choosing to go for time travel they chose style over substance.
4: Why do you continue to praise style over substance. If they wanted style so badly they should have made a movie, not an interactive game where 6-7 hours are spent in boring fights during which NOTHING happens story wise, except showing us what was promised in the E3 demo but never delivered.
5: Why focus on only the story when 90% of the game has NOTHING to do with the story itself. Most of your time is spent fighting in arenas that are closed off and linear. Why are you ignoring that in favour of a basic sci-fi plot? Let me guess your favourite Futurama episode is where fry goes back in time and becomes his own grandfather.

I did not ask for your opinion. I wanted explanations, you gave me your opinion. I wanted clarity, you gave me your opinion. I demanded that you explain your position, you gave me an interpretation based on your opinion.

I cannot do anything with your opinion. Because it is an opinion. Same for mine I did not want to go into opinions, yet eventually I did. That was maybe my biggest mistake I should have just said no and refused to talk further. Now if you excuse me I am going back in time to strange myself before I reply with my opinion so as to kill this timeline and cause an infinite loop paradox at the same time that everybody will ignore because the story is so AWESOME!!!

Aardvaarkman:

1337mokro:
They ignore the bad gameplay, the out of place elements, the strange gear shifts in tone, the "Bioshock had it so we have to put it in somewhere" elements that are scattered around Columbia and the fact you could have made this game into an adventure game with in total maybe 3 gun fights and have lost absolutely nothing in terms of story and characters.

Well, I'm not ignoring that - but it's not really the topic at hand, is it? The article we are talking about specifically discusses the ending, not the gameplay in general. I thought the gameplay was pretty average, but the story was decent enough.

In the other thread, you certainly said some very strange things, which I don't think are worth arguing about, because you're being so stubborn and keep changing the topic. Like how you think there didn't need to be racism or religion in the story, just... because?

Oh sure you can now go on to say "Oh but I am right, so you should have given me a point for every argument"

That's supremely ironic. Can you point out anywhere that I simply said "I'm right"? That seems to be more like what you're doing when you dismiss different opinions.

Again, not really a mature answer, but more of a 5 year old answer that supposes first that a discussion about people's opinions about a game has a Right answer and that one party is the sole instigator because it does not align with your opinion.

Yeah, this doesn't help, when you call people 5-year-olds, when they are just trying to have a discussion. And that's something that seems to come up again and again in your posts - everybody else isn't as smart as you, and you're just right.

Also see where you mockingly asked "how old are you?" of someone in one of your posts. Not a very mature way to debate.

I did not say any of that. In fact I said that Bioshock Infinite should have explored the racism more. It should have explored the religious zealoutry more. It should have explored the class struggle more. I wanted much much more exploration of the themes it mentioned, but never bothered to delve into.

However you interpret that is not relevant seeing as you were quite intent on painting me that way, even ignoring my last message literally stating what I said just a few sentences ago. What I actually said was that if the game was not going to do anything with it, why have it at all. It's kind of like if in 2001 the computer didn't go crazy and just sat there diligently doing it's job the entire journey. The story is not actually about the AI going mad, but the theme of technology turning against us plays a role in the story. It influences the story and the characters, changes them or at least shows us something about them. If the AI hadn't gone rogue you could have left it out entirely without it influencing the story ONE BIT. Same with Bioshock Infinite. Most of the themes are superfluous.

Slavery, religious zealotry, class struggle, fatherhood, most of Columbia, the citizens of Columbia, 90% of the game, is utterly irrelevant and has zero influence on the story. You spend literally 2 hours trying to get a gunsmith to make weapons for you only to teleport into a universe where the revolution is up and going where you have played some part in it that we never see you fulfill and the game just goes "Well guess you don't need them guns anymore! Now go blow up that airship as a poor substitute for a boss fight!" The Booker in that universe went through a MASSIVE character development summed up in a recording. The Booker we are playing gets none of that.

He starts as brooding Booker and ends as brooding Booker. His interaction with Elizabeth is minimal and actually was completely ruined in my game because after every emotional scene she would toss me money breaking the immersion (bad game design choice #25). I JUST killed the ghost of her mother, she holds an emotional conversation with her, then says in her standard chipper voice "Here take this". I got fucking whiplash from the sudden gear shift, if that wasn't a figure of speech I'd sue Ken Levine for assault. She sometimes even does it OVER HER OWN DIALOGUE, which I suspect to be a bug, but in the middle of her sentences her voice would fade to the background and she would shout "Here take this".

This is supposedly a discussion about the ending, did you read the article? 90% of it, like Infinite, had nothing to do with the ending. What is mostly being discussed is the content of the game and it's mechanics, the ending is mentioned in the first two paragraphs and then gets substituted with what mattered, how the game stumbles over it's Big Daddy novelty shoes.

PS: When someone writes in Bold font "Bioshock Infinite has the deepest story ever. Prove me wrong" I can't help but question the person's age when he supposedly wanted to have a serious discussion, which he now laments he didn't get after making such ridiculous statements and repeatedly failing to address the issues in favour of going into an opinion war (which I did which was stupid of me). Again I find it funny how you continue to sift through comments picking out anything you don't like about me, yet ignore the cause of such a reaction.

Like I said, just because I don't agree with you and the rest, does not mean you get to use two different measuring sticks.

1337mokro:
I did not ask for your opinion. I wanted explanations, you gave me your opinion. I wanted clarity, you gave me your opinion. I demanded that you explain your position, you gave me an interpretation based on your opinion.

So... this about you not getting what you want, is it? Well, you can "want" and "demand" all you like, but then basic pedagogy tells me that in a situation like this I shouldn't give you what you want. And that would be my second reason to stop talking about substantive arguments, the first being, of course, that you were no longer listening anyway.

Farther than stars:

1337mokro:
I did not ask for your opinion. I wanted explanations, you gave me your opinion. I wanted clarity, you gave me your opinion. I demanded that you explain your position, you gave me an interpretation based on your opinion.

So... this about you not getting what you want, is it? Well, you can "want" and "demand" all you like, but then basic pedagogy tells me that in a situation like this I shouldn't give you what you want. And that would be my second reason to stop talking about substantive arguments, the first being, of course, that you were no longer listening anyway.

So... you want a discussion... but refuse to answer questions asked at earlier points in this supposed discussion. I guess you are right, this was never a discussion to begin with because you were more interested in swinging around your opinion than actual substantive discussion about the game itself. I ask to explain holes and contrivances in the story and I get answers back like "That's normal with timetravelling" or "That's just how they planned it, it being more contrived doesn't matter". That is all handwaving, ignoring the questions by offering non-answers.

As for listening to you, why should I when you repeatedly ignore what I say in favour of talking about your all important opinion, which you just blatantly admitted you did merely out of spite, over me daring to say that a videogame you really really liked was not all it was made out to be by pointing at holes, inconsistencies, flaws in logic and character motivation in it.

Also did you play Eternal Darkness yet? You really should. It might sway your opinion about Bioshock Infinite being the Deepest Story in Videogame History and Future. (opinion)

Now with all that said I do want to stress that if you like the game there is nothing wrong with that, here is where the opinions come in. As much as it might not look like it I don't actually want to say that you cannot enjoy Bioshock Infinite if you don't want to. Just that allot of people are ignoring the fact the street is crumbling beneath them because they are staring at the sky. You can like something DESPITE the plotholes, not by ignoring them.

1337mokro:
Also did you play Eternal Darkness yet? You really should. it will cure your opinion about Bioshock Infinite being the Deepest Story in Videogame History and Future.

So opinions need to be cured, huh? That's a pretty dangerous attitude to take, not to mention the most dour.

GloatingSwine:
You've confused breadth with depth. Having lots of "themes" but a shallow treatment of each one isn't depth.

Slander! I'm not confusing anything with anything! ;)
But you do have a point. The definition I gave was more of an off-the-cuff generalization, but I meant that you have to strike a balance between the different elements of that definition. Of course exploring one theme can be enough to achieve depth, but a story can be even deeper when it does that to multiple themes. Really, it depends on the individual story. And of course there will be exceptions, but isn't that the same for any generalization?

Farther than stars:

1337mokro:
Also did you play Eternal Darkness yet? You really should. it will cure your opinion about Bioshock Infinite being the Deepest Story in Videogame History and Future.

So opinions need to be cured, huh? That's a pretty dangerous attitude to take, not to mention the most dour.

GloatingSwine:
You've confused breadth with depth. Having lots of "themes" but a shallow treatment of each one isn't depth.

Slander! I'm not confusing anything with anything! ;)
But you do have a point. The definition I gave was more of an off-the-cuff generalization, but I meant that you have to strike a balance between the different elements of that definition. Of course exploring one theme can be enough to achieve depth, but a story can be even deeper when it does that to multiple themes. Really, it depends on the individual story. And of course there will be exceptions, but isn't that the same for any generalization?

It does when the opinion comes in the way of objectively looking at things. I ask why did the Lutece's not take the most convenient route and just kidnap the kid. Instead of an "I don't know" which would have been an honest answer, or the writers wanted to contrive a thematic element with the debt, which would also be an honest answer I get: "All the arguments for why they wouldn't do that, such as convenience, morality, etc., only strengthen the argument for why they would want to create the debt in the first place." Which is speculation about the motivation of characters that makes no sense.

Todd Akin has an opinion about rape. I say we should cure that opinion as quickly as possible before he achieves some position of power where that opinion influences his decisions. I changed it to "sway" if that suits your tastes better. The meaning behind the word hasn't changed. Though I admit it sounds way cruder the way I said it.

Which Bioshock Infinite does not do with the multiple themes it shows, it explored only a fraction of them. Ignored the rest of them as window dressing rather than themes to explore, which would have been interesting, but they didn't do that.

Though it is good that you haven't grown out of your habit of ignoring 90% of something to focus on only 10% of something. If I did that I might proclaim Bioshock Infinite as the Deepest Game Ever FOREVER too.

ice1985:
It's possible that the vigors (which are obviously plasmids) are there as a bit of alternate reality foreshadowing, like the relatively modern music in the tears.

To me it feels like the vigors have just been introduced to the general populace of columbia, and have not yet reached the insane, mind twisting levels of daily use that were shown in the original bioshock. Columbia itself feels like it's on the verge of civil war, much like rapture was in 1958, only here we're present when the city starts to burn and the ultimate fate of the city is later implied to be the eventual total insanity of it's citizens and decay of its once grand buildings.

it's not just foreshadowing, Comstock's universe is following Rapture's fall nearly verbatim.

Now, for something else that seems to bother people that i've heard a lot "What happens to the Lutece Twins?"

Nothing, well not exactly nothing, they exist outside of space and time and are therefore immune to the effects of a million, million universes ceasing to exist, However, there would also be versions of them existing in their original universes, never meeting. By their very nature the Lutece twins are a paradox they exist fully outside space and time while also having doppelgangers existing within it.

wrightguy0:

ice1985:
It's possible that the vigors (which are obviously plasmids) are there as a bit of alternate reality foreshadowing, like the relatively modern music in the tears.

To me it feels like the vigors have just been introduced to the general populace of columbia, and have not yet reached the insane, mind twisting levels of daily use that were shown in the original bioshock. Columbia itself feels like it's on the verge of civil war, much like rapture was in 1958, only here we're present when the city starts to burn and the ultimate fate of the city is later implied to be the eventual total insanity of it's citizens and decay of its once grand buildings.

it's not just foreshadowing, Comstock's universe is following Rapture's fall nearly verbatim.

Now, for something else that seems to bother people that i've heard a lot "What happens to the Lutece Twins?"

Nothing, well not exactly nothing, they exist outside of space and time and are therefore immune to the effects of a million, million universes ceasing to exist, However, there would also be versions of them existing in their original universes, never meeting. By their very nature the Lutece twins are a paradox they exist fully outside space and time while also having doppelgangers existing within it.

They are literally given away as promos and are used as CARNIVAL GAMES.

Not allot of people would ingest an unknown substance for the sake of a carnival game that gives them literal super powers after giving them delusional visions of physical mutilation and trauma. Imagine a little 5 year old wanting to play Oust the Devil and seeing his fucking flesh melt off! Or worse what if he takes a Possession sample, shit would get fucked up in SECONDS as he enchants his mom accidentally and makes her commit suicide when it wears off.

They would also NOT have a gondola and doors that function ONLY on Vigours if nobody uses them yet. Sure those generators disappear from the game after that ONE level, but that should give you an idea of how slapped together the whole thing is. It is just a poorly implemented element that they HAD to put in there because it was in Bioshock. There is no other meaning behind it than "we have to put it in there cause it's Bioshock".

1337mokro:
I might proclaim Bioshock Infinite as the Deepest Game Ever FOREVER too.*

Have at it. You'd be wrong, because as we have already established, 'Grim Fandango' and 'Psychonauts' are both deeper. As a matter of fact, after watching Extra Credit's series on 'The Walking Dead', I'd be willing to add that game to the list as well. Come to think of it, 'Dear Esther' is deeper than Bioshock Infinite too.
Anyway, I do appreciate the milder tone, but I'm still not going to discuss Bioshock Infinite any further. Partly out of boredom, mostly out of principle, not out of spite, but because I don't need to justify my opinions and I won't do so out of coercion.
As to the Todd Akin remark, I do sincerely hope that you're not equating the anatomy of rape with artistic analysis. Opinions regarding the one are far less valid than opinions regarding the other. Of course Todd Akin's views on rape matter, but I don't give a damn whether he prefers Picasso or 'The Godfather'.
Whatever the case, I wish you all the best and may there be many more games deeper than Bioshock Infinite in the future.

*Before you bother: yes, I took that quote out of context. Now calm down, it's just a joke.

Farther than stars:

1337mokro:
I might proclaim Bioshock Infinite as the Deepest Game Ever FOREVER too.*

Have at it. You'd be wrong, because as we have already established, 'Grim Fandango' and 'Psychonauts' are both deeper. As a matter of fact, after watching Extra Credit's series on 'The Walking Dead', I'd be willing to add that game to the list as well. Come to think of it, 'Dear Esther' is deeper than Bioshock Infinite too.
Anyway, I do appreciate the milder tone, but I'm still not going to discuss Bioshock Infinite any further. Partly out of boredom, mostly out of principle, not out of spite, but because I don't need to justify my opinions and I won't do so out of coercion.
As to the Todd Akin remark, I do sincerely hope that you're not equating the anatomy of rape with artistic analysis. Opinions regarding the one are far less valid than opinions regarding the other. Of course Todd Akin's views on rape matter, but I don't give a damn whether he prefers Picasso or 'The Godfather'.
Whatever the case, I wish you all the best and may there be many more games deeper than Bioshock Infinite in the future.

*Before you bother: yes, I took that quote out of context. Now calm down, it's just a joke.

I agree with everything you said here*. Though you still managed to mistake an analogy for misguided opinions clouding objectivity for a statement about the subject matter that those opinions are about.

There is now nothing left to discuss anymore. You have finally given in to reason and admitted all you wanted to discuss are opinions when I did not ask for them. Not ever. I asked for you to explain actual tangible things in the games, like how the themes affect the characters. Such things are not explained by opinion but by pointing to specific points in the story and outlining those moments. Opinion would not be necessary in this.

So seeing as you are still going on about your opinions the end of the skyrail has been reached. May the games you play be great and EA burn in the 9th circle of Dante's Inferno.

*An asterix was unnecessary, not everyone here takes themselves so seriously and can actually spot a joke when it's belly dancing nude in front of them, though you failed at the quote mining as you lobbed of the start of the sentence to force that joke. If you want to have any future in videogame advertising you should really master that skill.

Might have been better to go with something simpler like a flatulence joke.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGZ8vkCjnzI

The reason Bio-shock Infinite is bloody is because they where trying to point out the hypocrisy of the New American Identity towards the start of the industrial revolution. The time period Bio-Shock is often seen as Ideal America but in reality the late 1800's early 1900's where violent, bigoted, and even cartoonishly backwards. Take for example The Birth of a Nation, it even had white house screening.

wrightguy0:

ice1985:
It's possible that the vigors (which are obviously plasmids) are there as a bit of alternate reality foreshadowing, like the relatively modern music in the tears.

To me it feels like the vigors have just been introduced to the general populace of columbia, and have not yet reached the insane, mind twisting levels of daily use that were shown in the original bioshock. Columbia itself feels like it's on the verge of civil war, much like rapture was in 1958, only here we're present when the city starts to burn and the ultimate fate of the city is later implied to be the eventual total insanity of it's citizens and decay of its once grand buildings.

it's not just foreshadowing, Comstock's universe is following Rapture's fall nearly verbatim.

I completely agree with this assessment. And, I've been thinking that it would be really, really cool if one of the coming DLC packs had something to do with a tear that takes you to Rapture, circa 1949 or something, predating the madness.

1337mokro:

They are literally given away as promos and are used as CARNIVAL GAMES.

Not allot of people would ingest an unknown substance for the sake of a carnival game that gives them literal super powers after giving them delusional visions of physical mutilation and trauma. Imagine a little 5 year old wanting to play Oust the Devil and seeing his fucking flesh melt off! Or worse what if he takes a Possession sample, shit would get fucked up in SECONDS as he enchants his mom accidentally and makes her commit suicide when it wears off.

They would also NOT have a gondola and doors that function ONLY on Vigours if nobody uses them yet. Sure those generators disappear from the game after that ONE level, but that should give you an idea of how slapped together the whole thing is. It is just a poorly implemented element that they HAD to put in there because it was in Bioshock. There is no other meaning behind it than "we have to put it in there cause it's Bioshock".

It was the beginning of the 20th century. People were constantly being sold random Snake Oil cures. I got the implication that this was the case with the vigors.

1337mokro:

I'm sure you want your explanation to be correct, I'm not saying it isn't. I'm saying it is stupid. It is needlessly complex to find a universe where Booker lost, lost big and was willing to sell his daughter rather than doing a simple distraction.

My interpretation is that they happened to find a universe where Booker was already in debt to male Lutece, so they had a convenient means to convince Booker to hand over Anna and for female Lutece to get an equally brilliant partner in science. Why scour multiverses for passed out booker when you've already found one where he'll just do what you need him to?
+I think that even Comstock would probably feel a little guilty about straight-up stealing a baby from his own alternate universe self.

This is why I like the ending. It can provoke this kind of discussion. And any plot holes that are there are kinda irrelevant to the idea posed: that your own worst enemy could conceivably just be you with a different ideology.

I agree with what he wrote, but one thing in particular he seemed to bring up about the "silliness" that is in the game I disagree with. I found it to be intriguing and of course this is just my personal opinion but let me explain. First off it is just fun; for example fighting Washington/Lincoln robots while they spout over the top "patriotic" oneliners was hilarious and just a blast. Secondly it really drew me into the world, after seeing and experiencing their supposed perfect American city I was convinced that things so inherently ridiculous could actually exist in that context. It adds to that theme park feeling that most of the game experience seemed to convey which some reviewers complained about. But for me I felt like that was the point; after all the feel good facade essentially breaks down you face the true ugliness that you were uneasy about the moment you stepped into Columbia.

I was very curious as to Infinite's ending and watched Cry's play of the final section. I somehow feel that even if I had watched his play though of the ending wouldn't of made any more sense than it did when I watched it. Despite this it blew me away, I can see why Yahtzee had post Infinite depression. Ken Levine needs to make more games like this.

someonehairy-ish:

1337mokro:

I'm sure you want your explanation to be correct, I'm not saying it isn't. I'm saying it is stupid. It is needlessly complex to find a universe where Booker lost, lost big and was willing to sell his daughter rather than doing a simple distraction.

My interpretation is that they happened to find a universe where Booker was already in debt to male Lutece, so they had a convenient means to convince Booker to hand over Anna and for female Lutece to get an equally brilliant partner in science. Why scour multiverses for passed out booker when you've already found one where he'll just do what you need him to?
+I think that even Comstock would probably feel a little guilty about straight-up stealing a baby from his own alternate universe self.

This is why I like the ending. It can provoke this kind of discussion. And any plot holes that are there are kinda irrelevant to the idea posed: that your own worst enemy could conceivably just be you with a different ideology.

That's clearly not the case though, because there's not just a universe where this happens, it happens in as many universes as there are Comstocks.

It's also not necessary for Lutece to own the debt (and there's no evidence that he does), he only has to offer Booker the means to pay it, no matter who he owes. Booker has fairly humdrum gambling debts, Lutece, via Comstock, has vast resources he can use to pay them off. No more is needed or ever implied by the game.

This is the problem with Internet Analysis of stories, it starts with the fanfiction version it has made up and then bullies the original source material to fit. The first rule of story analysis, you are analysing the story as written, not your fanfiction of it.

ice1985:

wrightguy0:

ice1985:
It's possible that the vigors (which are obviously plasmids) are there as a bit of alternate reality foreshadowing, like the relatively modern music in the tears.

To me it feels like the vigors have just been introduced to the general populace of columbia, and have not yet reached the insane, mind twisting levels of daily use that were shown in the original bioshock. Columbia itself feels like it's on the verge of civil war, much like rapture was in 1958, only here we're present when the city starts to burn and the ultimate fate of the city is later implied to be the eventual total insanity of it's citizens and decay of its once grand buildings.

it's not just foreshadowing, Comstock's universe is following Rapture's fall nearly verbatim.

I completely agree with this assessment. And, I've been thinking that it would be really, really cool if one of the coming DLC packs had something to do with a tear that takes you to Rapture, circa 1949 or something, predating the madness.

1337mokro:

They are literally given away as promos and are used as CARNIVAL GAMES.

Not allot of people would ingest an unknown substance for the sake of a carnival game that gives them literal super powers after giving them delusional visions of physical mutilation and trauma. Imagine a little 5 year old wanting to play Oust the Devil and seeing his fucking flesh melt off! Or worse what if he takes a Possession sample, shit would get fucked up in SECONDS as he enchants his mom accidentally and makes her commit suicide when it wears off.

They would also NOT have a gondola and doors that function ONLY on Vigours if nobody uses them yet. Sure those generators disappear from the game after that ONE level, but that should give you an idea of how slapped together the whole thing is. It is just a poorly implemented element that they HAD to put in there because it was in Bioshock. There is no other meaning behind it than "we have to put it in there cause it's Bioshock".

It was the beginning of the 20th century. People were constantly being sold random Snake Oil cures. I got the implication that this was the case with the vigors.

But the snake oil doesn't do anything. A vigour gives you hallucinogenic vision AND super powers. If they had explained that the vigours worked that way ONLY because Booker was a dimensional traveler, it would have made sense. But they didn't. They put elements in the game that cannot be used without the vigours, they put vending machines everywhere that sell vigours. It plays to prominent a role whilst "regular" enemies can't seem to use them. They could easily have fixed that by making the vigour vending machines accessible only by opening a tear for example, but they didn't. The first thing that would have happened in an actual living city is that when I started shooting, the cops and civilians would rush to those vending machines and start pulling out Devil's Kiss vigours and shotguns.

Even worse is when you consider Possession is the ultimate power against organic opponents. We NEVER see anyone use possession on you whilst this would have killed you instantaneously and saved the city. Which is also why no enemy could have this. You see there are gaping huge motherfucking BLACK HOLES in the plot because of these vigours. It makes NO SENSE why no one would use possession which would force you to commit suicide and stop your murderous rampage.

Bioshock did not have these kinds of Plasmids, sure they had turret and big daddy specific plasmids but nothing that would not make sense when the enemies don't use it against you. But here we have a plasmid that could literally kill you in one hit and is advertised over the entire city. This makes no sense.

Also if you USE a vigour in ANY public area, people scream and shout and run away. Vigours are NOT normal in this world even though there are advertisements for them EVERYWHERE, they are used in carnival games, samples are given out on the street to random passerby, they are sold on every street corner in vending machines and some equipment in this game runs exclusively on those vigours, even in very public areas meaning that at least ONE PERSON working at those buildings has to have the ability to use Shock Jockey just to open the fucking doors.

We have insane people who can turn into crows and are apparently drafted into the patriot army to be firemen. Yet at the same time they give them out as treats and promotional items. What I really think happened was that Levine and the team went over this game and literally said. How can we make this appeal to as many people as possible. Let's rip out any of the world building and put in MORE shooting.

If you compare THIS game with the E3 trailer where people DID use the vigours against you you see two completely different games.

someonehairy-ish:

1337mokro:

I'm sure you want your explanation to be correct, I'm not saying it isn't. I'm saying it is stupid. It is needlessly complex to find a universe where Booker lost, lost big and was willing to sell his daughter rather than doing a simple distraction.

My interpretation is that they happened to find a universe where Booker was already in debt to male Lutece, so they had a convenient means to convince Booker to hand over Anna and for female Lutece to get an equally brilliant partner in science. Why scour multiverses for passed out booker when you've already found one where he'll just do what you need him to?
+I think that even Comstock would probably feel a little guilty about straight-up stealing a baby from his own alternate universe self.

This is why I like the ending. It can provoke this kind of discussion. And any plot holes that are there are kinda irrelevant to the idea posed: that your own worst enemy could conceivably just be you with a different ideology.

And that is your interpretation.

The male Lutece has never told us who owes the debt. In fact it strongly suggests otherwise seeing as he says he represents Comstock, so at the most he is the middle man. At the same time you don't know if they already stumbled across an indebted Booker, maybe this was the 125th universe they had to search to find these perfect conditions. Also nothing in the story tell you why or even that Comstock does feel guilty, he is still essentially kidnapping the kid, sure he extorts her, but in the end he is still taking her by force, remember the pinky? This is also the man who murdered his own wife, framed someone else for the murder and imprisoned the child he stole to be guarded by a monster.

I don't think this man is capable of feeling actual guilt.

They give NO reason why they HAD to do it this way and we can think of at least a dozen easier different ways to do this rather than orchestrating a possible gambling racket and extortion scheme to frame Booker into a debt. You see whilst they spent the possible weeks and months setting up this scheme they could have just opened a tear near the crib and snatched her. That would have taken maybe what? 10 seconds in total? Not to mention that this plan works in every universe and only requires a distraction or Booker to be absent for a really short while.

I refuse to accept that an alcoholic gambling addict spends his time 24/7 awake and guarding his daughter with a shotgun. The dude is probably splayed out on the couch most of the day trying desperately not to choke on his own puke.

You see if there IS a simpler solution the story HAS to explain why that is not an option. Otherwise the characters look like idiots for doing things way to complicated.

Right now it is this way because they wanted to have the phrase "Erase the debt". They wrote the story then forgot to shut the plotholes. Alternate Universe Booker never HAD to be interacted with in the first place. All they needed was a universe with a baby in it.

I don't have a problem with the violence, although the rag doll technology sometimes makes execution look silly rather than disturbing. The reason for that is that, even before the reveal of the connection between Booker-Comstock, it is well established that Booker DeWitt is not a nice guy... He is not the stereotypical action hero that kills a small army to get the girl at the end and wink at the camera. He has done and seen horrible things, and he is a broken man, even before going to Columbia. In that sense, it would have been hypocritical or simplistic to expect him to kill dozens of people (although racists) and then smile to the camera, like he was Indiana Jones or Nathan Drake.

And, about the vigors, I assumed its because we see it fairly early in its discovery. Most of the characters don't use vigors, and the ones that do are rather far from "balanced" people. The reason there are not so many demented people running around like in Rapture was because there was not so many vigor users. I did have an issue with the expending machines, but I found the justification in Bioshock 1 to be tenuous at best, too.

Interesting.
I found it one of the worst endings I've ever experianced, but, I can say it is an ending that evoked more feeling out of me than just about every piece of story-driven work I've ever read/viewed/played before. Some of it anger, and some of it just pure feeling. I stared at my computer screen for 2 minutes in total disbelief after I watched the ending.
I respect it just for that.

But over all, I don't want to ransom the devoloper's children (Although, it fits in with the game's story in this case) over the ending, because I did have a lot of fun playing the game, and being led along by it, pondering, and wondering what the fuck was going on in my head, unlike Mass Effect, where I felt some manner of control, like I understood what to do, and how I had the power to change it, and then got slapped in the face. Whereas in infinate, I was being transported by ball and chain, only to be slapped at the end of the ride. Nothing extreamly enraging, but enranging still, at the least.

Is this the best narrative the "art" of gaming can put together?

Killing and maiming cartoons who are so totally bad guys? In the multiverse no less.

Agayek:

Yes. Booker is a bad man. If they had drowned him for being a bad man, I would have had no problem with it (though the rest of the ending would have had to change to account for it).

It's not the fact that Booker died that is the problem here. There's nothing inherently wrong with the protagonist dying, and Infinite handled it really quite well.

Again, my problem is specifically that Elizabeth explicitly explains that Booker has to die to prevent the sins of Comstock. You would have a very good point if the exact reasoning was left vague, or they had explained it differently, but that's not what happens. Elizabeth explicitly says "You have to die, here at this Baptism, or Comstock's sins will be repeated infinitely."

She is not killing Booker because of his past. She is not killing him because he's a terrible human being. She is explicitly holding him responsible for Comstock's actions and killing him for it.

Like I said, it's masterfully executed and well done, but it espouses a fucking ridiculous philosophy that I just can't get behind. If you can look beyond the metanarrative and enjoy it, all the more power to you. I can't. It bothers me something fierce.

Well put, I respect your reaction to the ending.
But, while on the subject, I'd like to pose the following question: What if Elizabeth has actually turned into the same self destructive mess that we know Booker is? When she gains omniscience, and the truth about how Booker sold her is revealed, what if she simply took vengeance on Booker by killing him because of this?
If you remember, she reacted rather poorly when she learned that (what she believed at the time to be) her mother had hated her. Gaining the knowledge of her father abandoning her, she'd rather eliminate an entire series of realities than let this crime go unpunished. She does turns pretty scary and weird the moment before pushing Booker under the water. And the place where she does so, while similar to where the actual baptism takes place, it's not exactly the same. The reverend and the congregation is missing, and has been replaced by a series of different Elizabeth's. Maybe a hint of evil begets evil perhaps?

1337mokro:

So you're basically saying "I could explain it, but you just won't get it."

Can you get any more transparent? You do understand that is basically the 5 year-old approach when they don't know something. Is to allude that the person asking the question would not understand the answer. It also quite apparent that Bioshock Infinite does absolutely nothing with those themes except display them. We see slavery, we see religious zealoutry, we see a class struggle, but we learn nothing about those things.

We don't delve into what the characters think about those issues, what they mean to them, what it means to the other characters, why they believe what they do, the list goes on. You say "all the other things being said on the internet about them" like what? You quite quickly failed to give even a single quote and my entire discussion about the themes of Infinite with someone else has failed to yield anything regarding those themes, he was quite happy to get to the ending and discuss only that part as quickly as possible.

It seems to me what is being said about those themes is that Bioshock shows them. Yes it does. That's all it does.

I don't think you need to do much digging to get to the "deeper" message behind slavery. I think mister Mackey said it best. "It's bad mkay" it's even worse when you think about what it is also used for, it's basically used to give us Saturday morning cartoon villains that we won't feel bad about when we jam a rotary saw up their chest cavity,

Now instead of reading verbatim from the idiots guide to interpretation why not actually tell us how these themes play a role and influence the characters and story. Rather than just being sideshow attractions. After all you apparently are privy to the internet's secret debate about the subversive elements and influences these themes bring so why not share?

First of all, no. I'm basically saying that if you're using this thread alone to gauge the depth of this story, while simultaneously avoiding every difference in experience, interpretation and discussion taking place in not only the same thread, but also several points made on this very site as well as articles posted on every major game related publication over the past few weeks, you're going in to the discussion predisposed to deny any and every one of those points based on your own interpretation.
I can gather plenty on those subjects given that the game is really a personal story, and how the game handles one individual translates very well to how the other individuals pushing the goals of the aforementioned themes can be interpreted.
Actually putting together a reply to "what's deep about bioshock infinite" would require more or less an entire books worth of words, something no one would write for a forum post. This is why I'm referring to everything that is being written and discussed rather than writing out what should be simple a google search away. But if you are not interested, that's _fine_. I just take issue with you publicly blowing something off before actually getting in to the subject.

chikusho:
Snip

However that was not my question. I did not ask you to explain what is deep about Bioshock Infinite, which could quite frankly be answered in one word in my opinion. Nothing. But apparently you seem to think to need to write a Homeran Epic just to start to explain how deep this game is. Yet you write not a single explanative word, I suspect because my opinion is closer to reality than any of you want to admit.

It's in reality an extremely simple story, redemption through reconciliation with ones past. I don't think you need Plato and Levi to back you up on explaining the simple steps the story takes in that theme. Now what our dear Levine does is complicate that story with timey-wimey-wibbly-wobbly science and themes that are meant to distract your attention and give the allure of depth when in reality it is just a giant twist build up. Nothing before or after that twist really matters, which is good because that twist is the magic trick to make it look deep.

Now if you would stop overreacting and actually read the question you completely ignored to replace it with your own interpretation of that question, which I again remind you I have absolutely no use for, and answer the question as it was written.

My question could be answered by pointing to events in the story. My questions did not ask for opinions, interpretations, speculations or any of that sort because they did not need those to be answered. It's a very simple question really.

How do these themes affect the characters and story? What changed when these were introduced? How did they impact the characters in the story? You see you can interpret up as down, left as right, day for night and all that good interpretative question dodging. However the question does not need that.

All you need to do is point to the specific scene where it happened, you see I am not asking for a specific influence I am asking for ANY influence. That is ALL you require to prove that these themes did impact the story. You are literally asked to provide ANYTHING you want to support the notion that Bioshock Infinite has depth, your interpretation is irrelevant because all I want is the location in the story where this happens. That it what is requested of you, not your novella about how deep Infinite is.

Just to explain how the characters are affected when they learn that Comstock is for example a racist, a religious zealout, a madman. Why he can just accept to walk through poverty lane without so much as handing out a single silver eagle when not a few minutes later they learn that a different Booker would have risked his live to help the people of Columbia whilst this Booker would not. You see they often voice something to pull attention to it, but never explain or state anything more than that.

"Why are there separate bathrooms, seems like a waste to me?" asks Elizabeth
"Just because that's how things are." answers Booker
"How do you mean just how things are?" Elizabeth should have asked
"It's because those bathrooms represent two groups... one of them doesn't like to mingle with the other and the other isn't particularly happy with how they get treated because of that." should Booker have answered
"Why does one group not like the other? Did something happen between them?" Should Elizabeth have asked because she does not understand this separation

Now you have a conversation that did not happen in the game (bar the first two lines) which would have been an easy way to explore all of these. You literally have a character with you that is ideal to ask these kinds of questions. The easiest possible way to both ask and answer these questions because ignorance and explanation can be used to essentially give character ideas about it and explore the theme by way of discussion.

You see this girl has spent her entire life in a cage, away from any social issues, which I find hard to believe because she did read books, but hey you again have an easy way to way lay that by Comstock selecting her Books (for example no Abe Lincoln ion the history books). Yet when she enters this big wide world she shuts up after being given a handwaving answer to the problems and inequalities she sees?

All these things pass us by in the story and nobody ever tells us what they think about it, why they think it and what it means to characters. We never learn for example whether Booker finds it easier to kill family men now that they are religious death cult bigots rather than killing Native Americans for example. It is both killing and the people you are killing are such ridiculous cartoons they might as well be splicers but still. Explain to us what goes through Booker and how he thinks about it. We again get a small scene with where that gets mentioned, but it again is just handwaved rather than having the character explored.

It also doesn't help that WHEN it happens all the violence in the entire game is reactionary. Booker is always attacked first. So when they mention it and the pretend discussion took place it rang extremely hollow, because guess what, had he not been in danger of getting facial reconstructive surgery nobody would have died.

So why not stop running circles around your wagon camp of interpretation and just answer the question.

How do these themes play a role and influence the characters and story?

You can even use a handy list someone posted of what he thought was the first layer of depth (though he again failed to explain WHY those themes were the first layer of depth).

1337mokro:
snippety

Given your complete avoidance of the discussion I contributed to above my reply to you, as well as the angle _in_ the reply, I can answer with this: Name any fictional story that contains depth, and anyone can simply state the main plot points and pass it off as shallow.
Your mind is already obviously set on passing this game off in the very same way, so nothing I could ever hope to put together for you in this thread would ever change that. Especially considering that you do not even consider the discussion _in this thread_. Further, still surprisingly oblivious of the discussion going on around this game, you are simply assuming a lack of planning or intent from the creators without seemingly even trying to put the themes in context to the rest of both the fictional and real world.
If you haven't gained anything from the game or the story, that's _fine_. I'm sorry you had a bad experience.
But if you really have an issue with how the plot and/or themes of Bioshock Infinite were handled, argue the points instead of making broad proclamations.

Oh, and in case you have changed your mind and are interested, here's some reading material courtesy of a single google search:

http://gamesfiends.com/2013/04/06/bioshock-infinite-an-analysis-of-the-story-and-ending/
http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2013/03/27/an-attempt-to-understand-bioshock-infinites-brilliant-and-bizarre-ending/
http://www.wired.com/gamelife/?p=55460
http://www.pcgamer.com/2013/04/04/bioshock-infinite-ending-explained/
http://www.actionbutton.net/?p=3006
http://monkeyphatt.com/ps3/why-bioshock-infinites-violence-is-necessary/
http://www.incgamers.com/2013/04/the-bird-or-the-cage-what-bioshock-infinite-says-about-choice-and-fatalism/
http://kasamaproject.org/threads/entry/bioshock-infinite-a-class-perspective
peripsuche.blogspot.se/2013/03/bioshock-infinite-thematic-analysis.html

Just saying this to be fair with regards to the bloody violence...at least as far as Booker using the skyhook to brutally mangle Columbia's law enforcement. The game makes it quite clear that such behavior is actually part of Booker's character. And in a way - though it might be a stretch - it ties into all the violence in Columbia's society as a whole.

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