on March 29, 2013
The game struck me as entertaining, beautiful, and intense at moments. I absolutely love the storyline and have fallen in love with Elizabeth's character. It's true about what the others are saying about its length, but to be honest, it really completes the story within a reasonable amount of time. Story, story, story. I don't want a story to drag on longer than it has to but I was sad that it ended abruptly. But that happens sometimes, with a good movie or a miniseries, and you're just left in awe, about the experience you had just had with the movie/game/show. The visuals, the characters, the plot, will have a lasting impression on me. I love a good story and am glad to have played this game.
I think this game deserves all the 5 star ratings it has received. When people say, "It isn't worth $60," I think, look at all the time and effort the creators of this game have put into the details, the lovely animation, the character complexities, etc. This outweighs any minor aspects of the game, to me at least. Sure, I only ended up using Bronco, Jock, and Devil's fire thing, and the Carbine, Machine, and Hand Canon, but those are just aesthetics. The story, again, and characters, and the revelation of the game touched my heart. Cheese, I know, but it impelled me to write a review. My first review, in fact.
5/5. Played on Hard, 13 hours, exploring every corner of the game. I really wanted to experience everything it had to offer.
on March 28, 2013
First off, this game was very hyped. We've literally been expecting it for "forever" (give or take a year), since we saw the first gameplay reveal what feels like so long ago, and boy did this game deliver... I mean I used the word "superb" in my title... I'm not the kind of guy who says "superb" at the drop of a hat.
Graphics 9/10 - This really utilizes the Unreal engine, which fits the style of the game and the overall feel. There was nothing in this game graphically to detract from the visuals except for poor wall textures in some of the dimly lit areas (developers may have gotten a little lazy there), for the most part the graphics were able to compliment and deliver the stunning visuals. I was also pleasantly surprised to find that the developers gave more visual options than most games do, allowing me to balance performance and graphics on a gaming rig that is starting to feel the pressures of age.
Visuals 10/10 - As I touched on in graphics, the visuals of this game are stunning. Every environment is unique, and if you enjoyed those feelings you got playing the first Bioshock -- wonder, scale, fragility -- you feel all of that in this game and some. Artistically, this game is a masterpiece, I couldn't find anything to take away from this game. Originally, when I saw the first gameplay footage, I was very concerned with how Elizabeth looked but they came through redesigning her to make her much less like a caricature (in fact they worked with a cosplayer who looked similar to their original design to make the character more realistic). I cannot overstate just how important it was that they did this, the original character modelling would have really detracted from the immersion of the game.
Sound 10/10 - The sound of this game will blow you away. Everything is amazing, I get chills hearing some of the renditions of old-timey religious songs. I'm not sure if they intended for this to happen but it actually really made me yearn for more of that kind of music. It's not all hymns though, don't worry, there is such a variety in this game you should be blown away. There will be a lot of times you won't be able to help grinning, if you recognize the music.
Story 8/10 - The story was great, obviously very well-written and unpredictable throughout. The characters developed well and I was able to connect fairly well to them. In many ways it's structure was akin to the first Bioshock, and although it didn't (sorry to say) deliver on the same scale the first Bioshock did, it was great none-the-less. I don't quite agree with the people who think it's the best part of the game, it was really lacking in some areas. Without spoiling anything, I simply didn't feel like all the necessary loose-ends were tied. There are not multiple endings like I had assumed, which isn't a terrible thing, I'm not crazy about having multiple endings on a linear story, it would feel like a bit of a cop-out. It does however affect replay value.
Gameplay 7/10 - More than anything, the beefs I had with Infinite were that they sold me on it being in the Bioshock universe but with a much more unique playing style. While this is true for the environment, it's not functionally very different from Bioshock. The system of powers was supposed to be quite different, but functionally it was the same (with the exception of the addition of traps). In fact the only noticeable differences in gameplay were the elements that were simply not there anymore. There are no big daddy's or little sisters (I'm not saying there needed to be, but there needs to be some sort of functional equivalent to that game mechanism). Also eliminated were hacking and photography, which to me was a bummer since I always found that to be a nice optional bonus to the game. There were not the level of power-ups/upgrades strewn about the maps to be found that there were in the first Bioshock. In fact, most of the upgrades to your powers were just meant to be purchased. This was a huge step backwards from the first Bioshock. I didn't fully explore the Infinite environment, but I explored it quite a bit my first playthrough, and it wasn't as satisfying as fully exploring the Bioshock environment.
Combat 8/10 - The combat, on the other hand, WAS better than that of Bioshock. They added a great new mechanic in the skylines that makes combat a lot more mobile, fast paced and open. They did change the way powers work by having them be left-right mouse instead of making you use one mouse button to switch between (similar to Skyrim). This was a definite upgrade. Unfortunately one thing to be mentioned is that there weren't as broad of uses for the individual powers like there were in the original, instead there were simply more powers. The oil spills and patches of water were all very small so localized they were inconvenient to use, unlike in the first Bioshock where I found myself frequently utilizing the old water/shock combo. It seems like the one thing they did do to make up for this was to build-in "traps" that you can place with your powers for the enemy to run in to. This was a great mechanic. (a useful tip might be to change your keybindings so that you aim with the right-mouse and use powers with the middle-mouse... it worked better for me).
Misc. n/a - I can't really give a score to the game based on the fact that it allows you to do simple things like change key-bindings... however it does deserve mentioning since, sadly enough, some games don't actually allow that these days. The original keyboard layout is very poorly configured, but it didn't take much to fix it and make it usable.
Overall 8.5/10 - I really enjoyed this game, the music was probably the most outstanding part of it, giving me chills at several points. The environment captures that underlying darkness of the first Bioshock but in a much more subtle way; with how bright and open this game is, it really doesn't have the intensely dark feeling of the first, and that's not a bad thing, it really worked for this game and fit the mood perfectly. The environment and tone were the biggest things setting this game apart from the first Bioshock, and definitely worth mentioning and applauding the developers for. Not having a save system was a real drag, especially for a casual play-through. I'm fairly anal-retentive about unnecessary killing, so at a few points I found myself having to restart a chapter because I upset the locals. They should have simply disabled saves for the hard-mode/1999 and allowed them for the medium/easy. The story added to the game, but it didn't deliver like the first Bioshock, but it would be asking a lot to ask for it to deliver on that level, the first Bioshock might have been the greatest video-game story of any I've ever played.
This game stands on it's own, although I think it will always be the little-sister (no pun intended) of the first game, I should clarify that I'm putting it to a very high standard by comparing it to the first Bioshock, I would still say it is one of the best single-player storylines out there.
on March 27, 2013
First off, If you have the PC version and get occasional stuttering, make sure you set the following in the XEngine.ini (the one in My Documents\My Games\Bioshock Infinite\...\ folder, not the steamapps folder)
- texture pool size to a higher value (512 or 1024)
- Min and max framerate to 59 and 61
- background texture streaming to false (this one may or may not give you issues, so try it if the other two don't give you good results)
EDIT: *important* a commenter has stated that disabling background texture streaming has fixed the stuttering but at the same time caused a hanging at a load level screen. Keep this in mind if you are going to use this tweak, and if you do use it, please post a comment here as to its effectiveness. I havent encountered a problem myself, but YMMV
Now to the actual game....there are plenty of reviews here already that praise the hell out of it, so I'll save my breath and not repeat too much of whats already been said. But I wanted to say this and developers please take note: you don't need the newest game engine, uber-high res textures, and gimmicky physics (i.e. Crysis 3 brought to its knees by a swinging rope) to make a great looking game. Irrational/2K didn't spend their resources on live rendering individual blades of grass, tessellating every imaginable surface, and making anatomically accurate yet somehow emotionless faces. They gave us a work of art rather than follow the current trend of games making a desperate attempt to wow us by imitating the "real world". Who came up with the idea that FPS need to be totally void of imagination and artistic style, while at the same time require a $1000 GPU to run smoothly? I don't give a crap if I could see the individual eyelashes on an NPCs face; the novelty goes away in 5 minutes. Give me more games like Bioshock Infinite that let me forget about the real life for a few hours.
on December 31, 2015
Awesome with a surprise ending. You should approach this with a beginner's understanding of multiple universes - you'll get a lot more out of it.
Excellent. This is one of the games that I played through like a normal shooter then realized that game's authors had been giving me top shelf Sci-Fi and that I missed most of it because I was too dumb to look around and do some thinking.
Take the thoughful, scenic route - the game will reward you.
on August 15, 2014
First, let me clear the record on the download requirements for those of us with data caps. You DO NOT have to download 18 gigs as others have indicated. In fact, you dont have to download anything other than Steam. You do have to have Steam to play the game but updates are optional and not required.
Now for the game. I been playing PC games for over 20 years. After all the reviews and hype behind this game I made the call to give it a go. I was willing to download whatever was required based on some inaccurate reviews found here to see just what this was all about. The graphics are beautiful. I would say they are 10 out of 10. Probably the best looking game I have ever seen on the PC. That said, the game play is 6 out of 10 at best. The game is very slow to get started. Even when things pick up a bit that game lacks the fun factor. Crysis and even Half Life 2 left me playing for hours without any regards to time. This game was simply disappointing from the start. I am back to playing TF2 and Crysis without any thoughts of going back to pick up where I left off.
I am a big supporter of PC games but this one was a big disappointment for me.
on August 5, 2014
3/4 of way through game now. No glitches that I notice other than Elizabeth occasionally floating, but it's so infrequent that I pay no mind to it. Runs great on my PC which has 8GB ram, solid state hard drive, quad processor. Have only had very little problems with lag in the game. The story, sounds, world, everything, it's amazing. Elizabeth's AI makes me feel like I'm taking this adventure with another living person. Can she see me through the TV screen? She's that real.
I'm not a FPS person. I don't like FPS games. I suck at aiming. But this game I love. I don't know why, but I LOVE it.
INTERNET WARNING: don't have internet? Don't buy this PC game. It requires that you download steam and have a Steam account, which requires internet. When you install the game your game registration code that comes with your copy will be permanently linked to your Steam account, so don't lose your Steam Account information. You must be able to log in with your Steam account to play the game.
If the internet thing is no problem for you, then I absolutely recommend this game. Thinking back, I don't think there was a moment in this game that I did not enjoy. Except maybe that it's odd that you can find more money in trash cans than in purses. Haha!
on June 5, 2014
I love all the Bioshock games. I'm a casual gamer and every game of this series keeps me hooked until I finish. That's a rarity for me as I usually will play late on a Friday or Saturday night after my family goes to bed. I played this game most evenings when I got a little free time.
First things first. I almost missed out on this game because I have read critiques that paint it as anti-Christian or anti-religious. Since I'm a Christian, I try to steer clear of things that are outright antagonistic towards my beliefs and my God. I can handle different beliefs and viewpoints, I just avoid outright hostility. It is true that the main villain is a religious fanatic by the name of Comstock. However, the game portrays Comstock unequivocally as a FANATIC, thus not a reflection upon actual Christians. As we know, fanatics exist in every facet of human belief. In this case, the villain happens to be a "Christian" FANATIC, most likely because the story takes place near turn-of-the-century (19th into 20th) America when Christianity was undeniably the dominant religion. Also, Christianity is something most American players can identify with now since it's still dominant in the USA. I don't take this as a bashing of Christianity, especially since Comstock doesn't follow the teachings of Jesus, but rather the extreme legalism favored by the self-righteous.
The game also excoriates unfettered capitalism and socialistically-tinged populism. The previous games offered a critique of extreme objectivism and socialism. I see the whole series as commentary on idealogical extremes and the harm they do. Given that, I don't see this as a critique so much of Christianity but rather of religious extremism. Religion driven by the selfish aims of man without any care or regard for humanity itself, something that most regardless of religion or lack thereof fear. I think these games make their point well though not very subtly.
For those who are interested, there is some language in this game. It's not as prevalent or strong as it was in earlier Bioshock games which themselves were rather tame compared to a lot of others out there. The themes are very mature, but there is nothing gratuitous. There is no nudity and no overt sex acts: really nothing sexual at all beyond things that are revealed regarding Elizabeth's parentage. I'd have no problem letting a sufficiently mature teenager play this game.
The characters and story are very strong which is a hallmark of this series. The atmosphere and environment of the game are even more impressive. You will love exploring Columbia. The music sets the perfect tone with some truly beautiful pieces (familiar songs you'll no doubt recognize) that flawlessly match the scene and theme. My only complaint with the music is that there isn't a lot of variation; you will hear Scott Joplin's Solace on almost every load screen though I never tired of it.
As I mentioned in my heading, you're more of a spectator than an actor. On the normal mode of play, weapons, ammo, health, and salt (used to replenish your vigors) are plentiful. After your initial introduction to the game during which there is no real action beyond walking around, enemies come at you in waves at predictable times after entering a new area. The "bosses" and enemy masses aren't any real challenge, and I was pretty deep into the game before I died for the first time. These are the drawbacks that keep me from giving this game a rating of 5 stars. Sometimes I just want to fight and shoot people during the game and Bioshock didn't offer a lot of that.
On the flip side, despite the shortcomings of the game's challenges, I never got bored. Bioshock Infinite rewards exploring, the wonderful story keeps you invested throughout, and the gorgeous settings were enthralling. You live this game. I think the creators' goal was to put you in their story without worrying too much about giving you a challenge. This isn't new, it's just that few games are able to accomplish this goal as well as those in the Bioshock series.
Many lament the loss of challenge old games such as Contra, Ninja Gaiden for the NES, and other 8 and16 bit games gave us back in the day. Back then, you died and you paid for it! I look back and wonder how we ever had fun with the frustration factor so high as many broken gamepads can attest to. I much prefer games now which try to immerse you in their world rather than kick the crap out of you because you have only two dimensions to move in so there's not much else they can offer.
I look forward to getting the DLC for this game which sounds like a return to Rapture. Hopefully this series continues. I'd love for the Bioshock team to release an updated version of System Shock 2 which I believe is the spiritual ancestor of this series. I heard great things about it so I purchased it from GOG. I just couldn't get into it as the graphics and sloppy controls were too antiquated for me.
on April 28, 2016
A very engrossing game but a bit too complicated for it's own good. The "tears"(shifts in time) are so many, you are not sure where(or when) you are and the ending is more of a postscript (again overly complicated) that you can skip although is does reveal who Elizabeth is. The "vigors" are superpowers that give you specific abilities but I found I use only about half of them(shockjockey, an electrocution bolt of electricity, is my favorite). I also wish you could carry more than 2 weapons. The battle scenes are challenging but sometimes feel like they were just added for the sake of another fight. Finding hidden stuff along the way is very fun and money is picked up so you can buy upgrades to your vigors and weapons. Salts power your vigors, you have a "shield" that wears down in battle but regenerates if you are not being hit and your health which suffers once your "shield" is broken. The obviously right wing political world you are fighting in is overturned with you(Booker Dewitt)` and Elizabeth leading the way using these "tears" in time. Your mission of rescuing Elizabeth to bring her back to New York to wipe away your gambling debts becomes more of a mission to help the right wing run world free itself as you become more involved in Columbia, this floating world above the earth where Elizabeth is held captive.
I'll caveat this review with a few disclaimers. I'm what the gaming community refers to as a "Noob" or better yet "Old Guy" that said I really don't know much of the lingo about technical specifications and so on.
Decades ago when Doom came out and was all the rage of course I dove in and loved it. The best game I ever played was Phantasmagoria which at the time had an unprecedented million dollar budget and in what was then a male dominated industry the game was designed by a woman named Roberta Williams, who along with her husband went on to found Sierra. I digress as usual.
It's both obvious and safe to say that I'm, not a gamer. When putting together the specs for a new computer that could do a better job with my passion for video editing it was easy to see that the specs in many ways mirrored that of gaming machines. A friend suggested I upgrade my graphics card to a Nividia GTX 770 which was the highest upgrade at the time through HP.
He's a die hard gamer and suggested I buy a copy of Bioshock Infinity to see what the card can do. Months later I finally took the advice and the results are just terrific. Bioshock Infinite is deeply rich with superb music, texture, depth, incredible clarity and an attention to detail that's at times literally jaw dropping, smoke swirling from an ashtray, the realistic look and motion of water and so on.
To boot, it's got albeit somewhat predictable a compelling story line to boot. On the down side I find what's initially most impressive about the design elements of Bioshock get tedious and you end up longing for some kind of action to take place and that's a significant draw back. I also agree with many of the other reviews in that not being able to save the game when you want to is really a terrible flaw built right into the heart of the game.
The game will self save when you've completed a chapter. This leaves having to make the choice of do I want to start all over again? or trudge on until I can finally save it and begin at that same point when I'm not bored, tiered or busy.
However the overall look is as I said terrific, a superb marriage of sound and graphics and well worth giving it shot draw backs and all.
on September 1, 2015
My son really like this game. Everything is fun and there is an interesting good story. The only things he doesn't like about it is that aiming witht the guns is weird and they use the same boss battle 3 times in a row.