Is Bioshock 2 really as bad as we remember? (Spoilers)

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Y'know, I don't think I've heard anyone (Apart from Yahtzee) Hate on Bioshock 2...
As for my opinion, it's a great game, all the Bioshocks are.

TrulyBritish:
I killed most of the people in Rapture and still seemed to get the good ending.

'Spoilers' are in the thread title and all over the thread, but here's a warning anyway.


The brilliance of how Bioshock 2 did its moral choice system was that killing or sparing the secondary characters didn't impact the ending you got; It impacted how you saw Rapture through the Little Sister's eyes during a section late in the game. If you killed them, statues of Delta being oppressive would be erected around the place, while if you saved them they would portray Delta as a savior. What you did with the Little Sisters was still what had the greatest impact on the actual ending, as it altered Eleanor's disposition while she watched how her 'father' treated her 'sisters'.

The game wasn't about the same sort of black & white moral decisions that the first Bioshock put forth, as it was focused much more on being a personal story. So the player didn't get smacked upside the head for being immoral if they decided to waste the plot characters, which I feel was by far the proper way to approach the situation.

shrekfan246:

'Spoilers' are in the thread title and all over the thread, but here's a warning anyway.


The brilliance of how Bioshock 2 did its moral choice system was that killing or sparing the secondary characters didn't impact the ending you got; It impacted how you saw Rapture through the Little Sister's eyes during a section late in the game. If you killed them, statues of Delta being oppressive would be erected around the place, while if you saved them they would portray Delta as a savior. What you did with the Little Sisters was still what had the greatest impact on the actual ending, as it altered Eleanor's disposition while she watched how her 'father' treated her 'sisters'.

The game wasn't about the same sort of black & white moral decisions that the first Bioshock put forth, as it was focused much more on being a personal story. So the player didn't get smacked upside the head for being immoral if they decided to waste the plot characters, which I feel was by far the proper way to approach the situation.

Yeah, I got that bit (which I did quite enjoy), but are you sure? I'm sure (well I might have to check the wiki) that both the characters killed and sisters saved affects the ending. I didn't really like it in the first one either.

TrulyBritish:

Yeah, I got that bit (which I did quite enjoy), but are you sure? I'm sure (well I might have to check the wiki) that both the characters killed and sisters saved affects the ending. I didn't really like it in the first one either.

I'm preeeeeetty sure. Can't be 100% positive because I only killed one of them, but I believe that it's only the Little Sisters that directly impact the actual ending.

And while the redeem/harvest Little Sisters is still the same black&white morality from the first game, it at least makes more sense in the context of Bioshock 2's story, and they weave it into the narrative more effectively with how it changes Eleanor.

shrekfan246:

'Spoilers' are in the thread title and all over the thread, but here's a warning anyway.

The brilliance of how Bioshock 2 did its moral choice system was that killing or sparing the secondary characters didn't impact the ending you got; It impacted how you saw Rapture through the Little Sister's eyes during a section late in the game. If you killed them, statues of Delta being oppressive would be erected around the place, while if you saved them they would portray Delta as a savior. What you did with the Little Sisters was still what had the greatest impact on the actual ending, as it altered Eleanor's disposition while she watched how her 'father' treated her 'sisters'.

The game wasn't about the same sort of black & white moral decisions that the first Bioshock put forth, as it was focused much more on being a personal story. So the player didn't get smacked upside the head for being immoral if they decided to waste the plot characters, which I feel was by far the proper way to approach the situation.

Actually, if I remember correctly, there was a slightly different ending for if you saved the sisters but killed the sub characters. I think if you killed the sub characters, Sophia Lamb was drowned by Eleanor... but if you saved most of them, Eleanor gives her mom a breathing device. In the good ending, at least. That' why I said that the moral choice system made a smelly mess on the ending. But it didn't ruin it too much because it was a thrilling escape that ended in you escaping. There are two rising in the water variations (Sophia drowns or lives) and four after escaping variation (good in which Eleanor recruits you with no choice, neutral and living within Eleanor, neutral and choose to die, evil in which you seem to choose to die but Eleanor takes you by force)

Oh, here, IGN made nice chart.
http://www.ign.com/wikis/bioshock-2/Secret_Endings

I'll be honest, the need to sign into Windows Live Arcade in order to save and me forgetting my password meant I couldn't play it from that save pissed me off so much I barely played it. Seemed shit though. I didn't even like Bioshock that much but at least I could play it.

Absolutely LOVE Infinite though...

shrekfan246:

I'm preeeeeetty sure. Can't be 100% positive because I only killed one of them, but I believe that it's only the Little Sisters that directly impact the actual ending.

And while the redeem/harvest Little Sisters is still the same black&white morality from the first game, it at least makes more sense in the context of Bioshock 2's story, and they weave it into the narrative more effectively with how it changes Eleanor.

Right, did a quick check and you're pretty much right...ish. Killing or saving the citizens means either Eleanor save dear mummy or kills her, while the little sisters affects whether she's a hero of mankind or a psychotic witch-child.
I have to admit it was [i]sliiightly[i] better, at least there was a kind of grey area in the middle where you could choose, but being the people-hating sociopath that I am, I would have gleaned some amusement from watching Eleanor go "Meh, I wonder what the internets like on the outside world?".
*now thinking of the different ways it could be used as an analogy for wasted potential*
*Now thinking about cats and cookies*
Mmm cookies.....

I liked Bioshock 2. Combat was better, and the story wasn't bad, it just felt a bit derivative. They had interesting ideas that didn't quite match what they were hoping for. But they also put effort into it, had some interesting concepts, and it was interesting to see a sort of counterpoint to the first game, criticising extremist views in the opposite direction of Andrew Ryan. Overall, it wasn't as good as the first, but I think it was a solidly good shooter, hovering around the better games of the year, and really only suffered because Bioshock kind of felt like the first modern incarnation of the philosophically relevant modern AAA game, and Bioshock 2 therefore had a nigh impossible act to follow.

I really liked Eleanor and the relationships to Big Daddies...

The combat was still pretty meh. I missed weapons like the Crossbow and the Revolver, and it wasn't a huge step up from Bioshock except for removing my favorite weapons and making plasmids a lot easier to use. I didn't like replacing humanoid Jack with nigh-unstoppable Big Daddy Delta, I missed some of the characters from the first game like Ryan, but it was okay.

And I also missed having to pause to jab yourself with a syringe. It felt so cool and different to reload by injecting yourself with glowing power.

The way I've always thought of it is that if Bioshock 2 was the first Bioshock game to be released, it would be the better one. It has better gameplay, and umm... Yeah, that's all I can say for certain.

But as it didn't come out first, it immediately loses all points for atmosphere and creative setting, which are the two biggest points for the series in my opinion. There weren't any big "wow" moments in it simply because you'd seen it all before. I'm also a bit annoyed with Bioshock 2 for ruining Andrew Ryan for me; in the original he was a man who would literally order you to kill him in order to make a point. In the sequel you can't go five steps without finding an audio diary that portrays him as a complete hypocrit. It completely destroys any political statement the original might have made, since it shows that Andrew Ryan compromised his objectivist vision so thoroughly that Rapture's failure can no longer be seen as a criticism of that political view. Instead we get Sofia Lamb, who may be one of the most annoying and stupid villains ever. Remember the bit in Bioshock 2 where she floods a massive section of Rapture to try and stop you? When you're wearing a massive diving suit. And then she goes on to radio you while you're underwater and tell you that it's all your fault.

And of course the whole "playing as a Big Daddy" thing was a bad decision from the start. I don't much like Bioshock 2 because it was an unnecessary sequel and I feel like the only areas that I can say it improved on for certain are the easiest ones to improve. Making the combat better in the sequel isn't much of an accomplishment, especially when it had such glaring flaws in the original.

When I think back to Bioshock 2, no matter how hard I try to think that it sucked, I then remember the Electro Shock + Drill Charge combo.
That was the best.
I guess it's not bad, but there wasn't as much mystery an novelty in it now that we knew just what happened to Rapture.

I really enjoyed it. I have my doubts over many complainers. Some people give genuine understandable reasons why they didn't like it. However, others seem to rag on it without ever playing it, like Too Human.

You're overpowered in Bioshock 2, that's all.

While Bioshock borderlines the Survival Horror genre with it's atmosphere and gameplay, Bioshock 2 is a Power Fantasy. Which almost puts it on opposite sub-genres inside the same FPS-RPG-Stealth hybrid (with the latter not being really important in the second game, and now completely thrown away in the third one, which happens to be also a Power Fantasy, even in 1999 Mode).

That's why some people prefer it and some people (like me) prefer the original, appart from the ones that simply measure them for their stories. It's just a matter of taste in which genre you like most. The lack of stealth action pretty much drops my immersion in the game's world by a lot.

Obs.: This comment is based on playing the 3 games on PC, using mouse, going for the hardest difficulty in the first play-through. So my opinions might not fit the reality of the game on different hardware, ports or difficulty setting.

Samus Aaron:
Bioshock 1 is severely overrated. It's one of the best games of this gen, but it's still overrated.
Combat was a bit-above-average at best. Ammo was too prevalent (minor gripe). The post-climax story falls very much flat, especially the ending (although I liked playing as a Big Daddy temporarily).

Having the big reveal two thirds into the game was actually actually a stroke of genius, imo. That way, you get to do the thinking and exploring and figuring out the rest of the stuff during the last part. Then the ending doesn't have to be so cluttered (I'm looking at you, Infinite). Everyone seems to want to leave all their bang for the ending, but having both twists and emotional pay-offs can be a little overwhelming.

About BioShock 2, tho, the main weakness is the plot. I did not enjoy the whole "The memories of all the ADAM users are stored in their ADAM" concept. Pretty stupid. Also, the ending was kind of disturbing,

How about no?

Also, making the vita chambers plot relevant was pretty stupid. They were pretty much my one gripe with the first game..

Am I the only one that never liked Bio1 but enjoying Bio2? Seriously I thought Bio1 was overrated with meh gameplay and a pretty awesome setting but both being improved in 2.

LuisGuimaraes:
You're overpowered in Bioshock 2, that's all.

While Bioshock borderlines the Survival Horror genre with it's atmosphere and gameplay, Bioshock 2 is a Power Fantasy. Which almost puts it on opposite sub-genres inside the same FPS-RPG-Stealth hybrid.

Well, you were probably being a completionist player. You probably walked into a room and went "hey, there's a camera to hack, and also a turret, and this other turret, let's hack them all from afar" and then you did. And then everything died trying to fight their own machines instead of you... WHILE you were filming them so you could do even more damage and have all the best tonics. Later, while escorting a little sister and coming upon a body to harvest, you set up six different traps including two mini turrets, 12 trap-ammo rivets, and a couple of proximity bombs just to be certain. And then everything would die before they knew what your helmet looked like. There are people who didn't play that way; Yahtzee, as an example, given the way he would talk about having to use up all of his ammo and medkits just harvesting twice.

I actually liked that as a gameplay option... the ability to take your time and strategically set up for the bad times so that they aren't bad times anymore. But then again, I play Mage the Awakening so I think we know I'm THAT kind of gamer.

Torbjoern Bakke:

About BioShock 2, tho, the main weakness is the plot. I did not enjoy the whole "The memories of all the ADAM users are stored in their ADAM" concept.

That was totally in the first one too, but the memories were manifesting themselves as ghosts. Often when you walk into an area, so everything gets all distorted, and you hear talking or screaming, but you might not actually be facing the right way.

0takuMetalhead:
Am I the only one that never liked Bio1 but enjoying Bio2? Seriously I thought Bio1 was overrated with meh gameplay and a pretty awesome setting but both being improved in 2.

Nope, there have been a few that have said the same. However, I contend that the story is also important, and Bioshock 1's story was really good. Except the ending. So I still like the original Bioshock.

But before anyone jumps down my throat for being a hypocrite or something, I think the whole experience is important, but I assign the MOST importance to what all other forms of media lack: gameplay. Movies and even books can set up atmosphere just as well as games if they're written well. They can also create amazing settings, set themselves in the first-person to give the watcher/reader immersion (it has to be really well designed), and even offer a choice for the watcher/reader to contemplate. The only thing they don't have the ability to do is have gameplay... because then they'd be games.

Pebkio:

Torbjoern Bakke:

About BioShock 2, tho, the main weakness is the plot. I did not enjoy the whole "The memories of all the ADAM users are stored in their ADAM" concept.

That was totally in the first one too, but the memories were manifesting themselves as ghosts. Often when you walk into an area, so everything gets all distorted, and you hear talking or screaming, but you might not actually be facing the right way.

Yeah, well the thing is that it wasn't a focus there. It was left in the dark, and only used as a means to tell backstory and enrichen the setting. I could ignore the mechanics behind it the same way I ignore the mechanics behind plasmids/vigors, or the logic behind people leaving all their food and money in trashcans (to flesh out gameplay). It was also displayed as a very unstable phenomenon, only capable of showing distorted excerpts, and had lampshaded mechanics.

In BioShock 2 it's the central plot, and that just don't hold up.

Pebkio:

LuisGuimaraes:
You're overpowered in Bioshock 2, that's all.

While Bioshock borderlines the Survival Horror genre with it's atmosphere and gameplay, Bioshock 2 is a Power Fantasy. Which almost puts it on opposite sub-genres inside the same FPS-RPG-Stealth hybrid.

Well, you were probably being a completionist player. You probably walked into a room and went "hey, there's a camera to hack, and also a turret, and this other turret, let's hack them all from afar" and then you did. And then everything died trying to fight their own machines instead of you... WHILE you were filming them so you could do even more damage and have all the best tonics. Later, while escorting a little sister and coming upon a body to harvest, you set up six different traps including two mini turrets, 12 trap-ammo rivets, and a couple of proximity bombs just to be certain. And then everything would die before they knew what your helmet looked like. There are people who didn't play that way; Yahtzee, as an example, given the way he would talk about having to use up all of his ammo and medkits just harvesting twice.

I actually liked that as a gameplay option... the ability to take your time and strategically set up for the bad times so that they aren't bad times anymore. But then again, I play Mage the Awakening so I think we know I'm THAT kind of gamer.

Yes, I always try to play as smart and effective as possible. Fan of stealth and survival horror games, always the plan is to come out of a fight spending the least amount of resources possible. Pretty much a "the winter is coming" type of player.

I never though it was bad. I thought it was fine. Come and get me Yahtzee. Come and get me Susan Arendt. Come and get me my-friend-luke.

I wouldn't say bad, but I would say unnecessary

It wasn't bad, the only problem with Bioshock 2 was it was an unnecessary sequel to Bioshock.

The only complaint I have about Bioshock 2 is that the villain is a clichéd religious demagogue. Bioshock 1 had a very clever dynamic between Ryan, Atlas and Fontaine.

Yahtzee knows that people don't enjoy his reviews when he's being nice.

I personally think that from an exclusively gameplay standpoint, 2 was the better game. However I didn't play Bioshock for the gameplay. I played it because I wanted to know what the hell went down in Rapture. Going into 2 I already knew what had happened so the main appeal of the game was lost for me.

In the end, the suffered for being a Bioshock game. Its alright, its playable, but naturally being a sequel it had to be compared to the original Bioshock, which is just plain unfair.

I enjoyed them both and while I enjoyed the story more in 1 I liked the game play more in 2. I think they both have their place and I didn't feel cheated or slighted in the least about being back in Rapture. Actually seeing the part where the dad was looking for his daughter that had been turned into a little sister actually made my black little heart beat faster for a little bit.

I enjoy the whole series and while Bioshock 2 isnt completely unique, it imp rives upon the combat and fun of the first.. In thought the story was pretty cool too, but once you get thru it I never wanted to replay it, I did find the multiplay decent mindless fun.

I liked it better than Bioshock. Better gameplay, more personal story, better plasmids. Also, Minerva's Den was the best Bioshock story. Period. It was dark like Bioshock and controlled like Bioshock 2. Plus ion lance, everything's better with laser guns

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