The Average Gamer

2012 Gaming Catch Up – Bioshock 2

My gaming mission statement for this year is to finish my Xbox collection, whilst still struggling to put Fifa 12 down in between (apologies again). Next up – Bioshock 2.

The original Bioshock is a great game. Although the mechanics and gameplay is similar to many first person shooters, Bioshock was always more than that. The setting of Rapture, an underwater metropolis created out of spite of how the world is governed above water, is as bold as it is beautiful. Without spoiling the original’s ingenious story, Bioshock 2 is also set in Rapture, some eight years after the events of the original. This time, however, the protagonist is a Big Daddy; one of the game box cover-laden diving suit grafted monstrosities, who has no memory of the last 10 years, and no Little Sister. Another quest of self -iscovery, mystery and action ensues.

There isn’t much in the way of changes in Bioshock 2, but enough to keep the game fresh and it still manages to retain the feel that made the original so great. Being a Big Daddy brings in some weaponry changes, such as the Rivet Gun and Drill arm, the only absentee weapon being the symbolic wrench from the original.

You’ll also benefit from the full deployment of Plasmids, to freeze, electrify, hypnotize, etc. Although you still have the big arrow directing where you must go during a current objective, Rapture is a great place to explore, and more importantly, survive. Ammo and cash is readily available from searching almost any container anywhere, but enemies are around every corner and they do not hold back. The new addition is Big Sisters. You’ll know when to expect one: the screen goes blurry, your character seemingly in pain for a brief moment. Prepare to shoot like crazy. With these encounters, there is a true sense of panic and survival, and there is nowhere to hide.

Bioshock 2 is a great example of a sequel that doesn’t need lots of improvements to still thrive and appeal, especially as the original was so good. What 2K have done however, is add multiplayer modes to the package. I’ll be honest, I am yet to explore this myself, but there is a good range on offer, from your typical free-for-all, to ‘capture the sister’ (no explanation needed).  

More pleasing for me, is the inclusion of DLC, particularly the acclaimed Minerva’s Den, a new single player campaign for 800 MS points. It’s clear that longevity was the aim with Bioshock 2, and also, as The Average Gamer always advocates, value for money. It is often located in sales bins for less than £10 nowadays, so you’d be crazy not to consider it. But, I implore you to play the original first. Much like Rapture itself, it is magnificent.

Next up – Devil May Cry 4.

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