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BioShock Infinite Review PDF Print E-mail
Written by Adam Kerr   
06 04 2013

Image For each different person on Earth, art means something different. From paintings of flowers and vegetables to ancient Egyptian pyramids, every person loves to gaze endlessly at something. For me, it's computer games. From seeing Mario hopping around his pixelated home on the SNES to exploring the apocalyptic wastelands of Fallout on the Playstation, they're all marvellous in their own way. A lot of people argue that video games cannot be classed as art due to its computerized nature and they're wrong. Just because something is created on a computer doesn't take away from the talent of the people who created the idea in the first place. Back on track though, many games throughout time have left us in awe. Their beauty is something to behold, the ability to create anything and everything is quite remarkable. Places like Rapture and City 17, places so far from reality that yet seem so real. People may say video games cannot be art, that it can not capture the beauty of the traditional style of art. BioShock Infinite may have something to say about that.

Gameplay


Radical changes. They usually don't go well, they usually aren't well accepted by a hardcore fan, either. BioShock Infinite was developed by Irrational Games, returning to develop for the first time since the original BioShock in 2007. As with the original games, BioShock Infinite is full of violence and decapitations, but the ability to carry a wide variety of weapons is removed, now limiting to you to just two (but you can pretty much pick anyone you want up). Vigors (a form of special power-up) is replaced with Salts which allow to burn, electrify, throw people around or simply, peck them to death with Crows. In terms of the actual fighting, BioShock Infinite is quite different. Unlike in the first and second game, you literally fight large battles, taking on fleets of soldiers at a time. Such a thing could be difficult to master, but it's done very well. Some exceptionally intelligent AI creation means the enemy is constantly hiding behind cover and work well as a team. For example, if you sit behind a pillar, the computer recognizes this, and the AI controlled 'baddies' come down either side to flank you. This happens quite regularly as the AI usually has some form of "tank" character holding down the defensive positions. These "tanks" usually range from stuff such as a motorized-Thomas Jefferson, attacking you with a crank gun, to people how burst into flames or, again, a set of Crows.


Columbia is the new setting for BioShock Infinite (the previous two games having been set in the underwater city of Rapture). In the city of Columbia, people tend to travel by cable cart, which makes getting around easy for Booker DeWitt and his companion Elizabeth. Using a grappling hook the swing freely the cable cart support, the characters can pretty much get anywhere during battle. If you look to battle from the ground or from the rooftops, this brilliant edition to the game gives you the option to fight the way you want. Having a companion come along for the journey is also a new edition. Unlike most games, the wave of enemies you have to fend off never actually harm Elizabeth, which is a massive relief. In fact, she because extremely useful. When running low on ammunition/health/salts she's always there to give you more. They made same radical changes to the BioShock franchise in this game, but they certainly got the gameplay perfect.


Story


This is where the game really goes from excellent to masterpiece. The franchise is now for its terrific stories and this game far surpasses that of any other BioShock game. Set in 1912, the protagonist, Booker DeWitt, is a man with a debt. To repay this debt, Booker must go to the floating city of Columbia, a utopia created by Zachary Comstock, to bring a girl back down to New York City. How this seemingly simple story pans out is incredible. The characters, all completely new to the series, are incredible. It's one of those games where you just simply grow attached to them and it's important for a game to create a bond such as that, to help create fascinating stories. The city of Columbia is wonderful, a complete opposite of the underwater city of Rapture, from the way they look to their creators beliefs. The ending is phenomenal, an tremendous achievement that left fans in awe.


Graphics


The floating city of Columbia. How such a barren city can be so picturesque is quite simply breathtaking. Meandering, sun-dreanched roads leading to some magnificent scenery at times. Many farflung "mini cities" dotted around the outside of the main one. Incredibly detailed statues that simply tower over everything in the game. Graphics aren't the most important thing in a game, but there are times in BioShock Infinite where you will simply stop to take it all in. Even upon entering the duskiest buildings in the game, you always find something astonishing. This game was in development for five year, and the art designers used that time to perfection. From Elizabeth's ultra-realistic blue eyes, to detailed feathers on her "guardian" Songbird, the game looks formidable. In terms of sheer beauty, BioShock Infinite is simply untouchable by any game that has ever been created.


Overall


Astounding. Quite possibly, the closest thing to gaming perfection I've ever experienced. Gaming companies could learn from this. Rather than releasing the same game year after year, give the developers time and they could makes something wonderful. Terrific AI work keeps the game enjoyable, rather than making the fighting scenes a generic, mundane mess. Add to this,a story worthy to grace any cinema screen and you have the greatest game of this generation, possibly the greatest of all time.  

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