BioShock Xbox 360 Review - 05/02/2008

A great number of people have said Bioshock is the game of the year. Others say it is right up there alongside one of many great Xbox games, such as those in the Halo Trilogy. But is it that good?

Bioshock was awarded PC Game of the Show (Gamespy) 360 Game of the Show (Gamespy) Best of Show (Gamespy) Best PC Artistic Design (IGN) Best PC Game (IGN) it also was nominated for 8 other awards.

You cannot simply call this game a first person shooter because it uses game play and narrative without many stoppages. Bioshock is not just a game it's an experience. This should be the template for new games around the world because if any games are half as good as this, they will surely be somewhere near exceptional. It isn't just a remake of the System Shock Duos, it is a game to put 2K on the map for games other than their sports titles! 2k Games attempt at any games with guns involved has ended badly. But this is as close to perfection as possible and they have done insanely well managing the project. When you play BioShock you can see why people have been craving sequels. It's a great example of how good a game is when you work hard to fuse all the possible aspects together as one.

Rapture's artwork and design is truly inspired.

The game starts when your plane crashes into the sea and with your character having to swim to Rapture to survive. At many points in the game, it makes you look back on your past and you never really see that in most games - it makes you think. You're mainly told what to do for each objective but every level you complete you still feel a sense of achievement at having worked for something.

In BioShock everyone is fighting for their lives because of one man, Andrew Ryan. He is the man who created a city underwater, he is obsessed with the whole aspect of man and what makes a man. In Andrew's vision the underwater Utopia is a complete failure. And the whole idea of the game is to figure out why you have come across this place. Is it fate or coincidence, and why is Rapture such a disaster?

There aren't many allies for you in Rapture.

The only major problem when you buy Bioshock is that you are unable to play this online. Surely you could have some kind of all on all Deathmatch, but no the designers of Bioshock have decided not to. Why? You figure this out as you play, you have your own feelings towards certain characters and you have your own view point on the game. Arguably multiplayer additions to story-heavy games never really work out, and often end up ruining the single player in the process.

In BioShock the main enemies are splicers who are just genetically modified humans, but they all have different personalities and shout and scream at you, which can be pretty unnerving at times. They are all unhappy; they are trapped in this state of mind not wanting to be there with you stranded in this underwater city, just trying to survive. It's as if they attack you wanting you to kill them, putting them out of their misery. They all wear masks because they are ashamed of what they have become. They have killed and don't want to be alive anymore. BioShock is full of emotion, morals and atmosphere.

It's every man/splicer for themselves in BioShock.

During the game you have to technically hack many different things. You can hack safes to open them and gain items, turrets to make them attack your foes, flying bots that follow you around as your own personal body guard, and vending machines to lower prices of ammo and health packs etc. The mini-game to do this requires you to match up sequences of tubes to allow a liquid to flow uninterrupted from one specific point on the screen to another. It's hardly revolutionary, but it works, and can be quite a tense little distraction from Rapture at times.

The best part of BioShock is how the whole game fits in together. The story is played out through voiceovers, allowing you to continue the game while listening to what's happening, and therefore not making the game like others, continuously stopping and starting. The sound track is immense, with the groans from the splicers and the stomps from the big daddies, especially on surround sound, making you feel you are actually there and that they are really coming towards you. Overall this is truly a pleasure to play and should be what other developers aim for in the future. Let's hope so anyway.

- Lewis



2K Games
Irrational/2K Boston
360 - PC