103 of 124 people found the following review helpful
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.
28 of 33 people found the following review helpful
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.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
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.
87 of 118 people found the following review helpful
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.
21 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on May 27, 2013
I thoroughly enjoyed Bioshock 1 & 2, but found myself a bit bored with Infinite. Perhaps I've played too many similar games at this point and it's harder and harder to be surprised and impressed by mainstream titles. I'd say the game is worth playing, but I thinks it's grossly overrated in the gaming editorials.
I played Infinite on a powerful pc, and it is a visually impressive game. The only visually disappointing aspect was the heavy re-use of character models. It feels like Columbia is populated entirely by clones of around 10 different people. I was also disappointed by the lack of depth in exploring Columbia. I was hoping for some more exploration around the Columbian life-style and the people that occupied it. I wasn't able to have a single conversation with a citizen to talk about why they chose to live in Columbia, what the floating utopia meant to them. In fact, for a game that was so hyped for having so much dialogue, I found it to be lacking. Other than a couple main characters, it felt like 99% of the NPC dialogue was simply to convey that the city was racist and uber religious.
The gameplay was also a mixed bag. One high-point is the main NPC, which is 1 of 2 things I felt Infinite did to move the genre forward. Elizabeth was done extremely well. Just the little things, like her sitting down a looking around, or looking out windows with curiosity, really elevated my expectations for what a companion NPC character can add to a game. I also enjoyed her help during the more difficult fights when she'd toss salts, health and ammo my way. The character development was also decent, but a bit rushed. She transitioned from the innocent girl locked up in a tower, to hanging out with a mass killer, without much emotional turmoil.
Combat got very repetitive and wasn't very interesting. You have your standard selection of uninspiring weapons and special powers (called vigors). Don't get me wrong, the powers can be fun, but they've all been done before, and they don't vary combat all that much from one another. Wiping out groups of enemies goes from being fun to being a chore very quickly. The other high-point of gameplay, are the rails you can glide on throughout the city. In a few parts of the game they successfully add some variety and increase the fun factor.
I also find myself frequently frustrated with the way dialogue is presented in the game. I'm not expecting Mass Effect level RPG elements, where what I say has major plot implications, but the complete lack of control over conversation is disappointing. I've even grown tired of the dependency on conveniently placed recording devices to reveal crucial plot points. A few times I would start playing the recording and continue walking, then a convo with Elizabeth would get triggered and the audio became incoherent. Then I would restart my checkpoint, only to find that it was much further back than I expected, increasing the frustration.
**Minor Spoilers below**
At first I found the "tears" to be interesting, but then I realized things were going to devolve into some plot-convenient combination of quantum mechanics and time-travel. The use of multi-verse theory is interesting, but it has some rather chilling implications if you're really going to think about it. Cool guys, I saved the day in my current universe, in how many other universes are these same people suffering because things didn't work out? Overall, I think the plot was alright, but it really did feel more akin to the "it was all a dream" cop out than a genuinely clever application of theoretical physics.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on February 14, 2014
"Will The Circle Be Unbroken"
Love this story, the music.
Beautiful picture ,Treacherous atmosphere
Plz keep going make game like this one.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 10, 2013
Exhalent game with one of the best stories in gaming. Well worth playing more than once! A must play of this console generation!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 18, 2013
A decent game, but doesn't quite reach the level of the original. But you know what squel ever does. Overall worth the playthrough.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 20, 2013
If you loved the first two games (Or at least the first one) you will be very disappointed, the creepy eerie mystery of past games is all gone and replaced with a ho hum plot. Instead of surviving i felt like i was just playing an artistic Call of Duty, mostly run and gun tactics. However the visuals are very nice and like I said the story is OK at best. I really hope in the next game the series goes back to its roots, but considering how much praise this one got that will probably not happen. Bottom line if you're a die hard Bioshock fan, like me, play it but you may be disappointed.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on October 19, 2013
I absolutely loved this game. While it plays exactly like the first two Bioshock games, it is a completely different world. We're in Columbia now instead of Rapture. It's not the familiar claustrophobic, horror-inspired environment. Now we're in this floating city in the clouds full of bright colors, fairgrounds, and quirky characters. While Bioshock 1 and 2 focused on creepy, weird, and crazy characters, Infinite is much more surreal and visually breathtaking.
There's a steampunk feel to the city, which is really interesting. Lots of old technology in a science-fiction setting. Like in the original Bioshock games, much of the back story is revealed through audio logs, but there are also silent movie viewers scattered around town. The best part of Bioshock Infinite's visual appeal, however, is in the exploration of the city. There are posters plastered over everything to read, storefronts to explore, and beautiful architecture. The graphics quality is amazing. I was able to run the game on a cheap store-bought computer with on-board graphics (8 GB RAM, dual-core processor, 64-bit Windows 7) with few problems that didn't hurt my enjoyment of the game. I since upgraded to a GeForce GTX 660 and can enjoy Columbia in max settings, making it even more enjoyable. So while you don't need to greatest hardware to run it, it naturally looks better with a higher end GPU.
Columbia is a city plagued by fairly in-your-face racism, political unrest, and a tyrannical religious ruler. Some people might not find the thematic elements and intolerant society that appealing.
While the game play and controls are identical to previous games in the series, there is one game-changing element that I felt was the stand-out feature of the game. Her name is Elizabeth and she is not only an incredible, well-acted character who is impossible to dislike, she's also an all-in-one armory, ATM, and field medic. When you're running low on ammo. health, salts (your magic energy), Elizabeth hollers, "Booker, catch!" and gives you the hook-up. While she undoubtedly makes the game a bit easier, the idea of having a companion in an FPS is just so fantastic. I watched an interview with the developers and they commented on how their goal was to keep Elizabeth in view as much as possible, and it really was a stroke of brilliance. You can always count on her to be there and it only strengthens your bond to the character and makes you more invested in her story.
As for Booker, he's kind of a jerk, especially at first. He's the typical tough guy hero, though he is typically self-motivated to do the right thing.
The weapon and vigor (formerly plasmid in the Bioshock 1/2) selection is great. It's not too tough to find money if you explore the environments thoroughly (and once you see them you will want to).
The story is very surreal, leaping across dimensions of reality, and ultimately concluding with an ending that tries too hard to be thought-provoking and mind-bending. It seems a fitting ending for the story that essentially demands a replay to fully appreciate how everything is set up along the way, but it also dumps a lot of new information and concepts on the player in the final moments, making it a little too heavy to digest. It can be said the ending produced the desired effect due to all the discussion it generated among players. I didn't particularly like the way the game ends, but it didn't ruin the experience as a whole for me. I will definitely replay this game in the future.
There are two upcoming DLC story packs that tie the game into Rapture that I'm very excited to play through, so it's nice to see new content coming for this wonderful game.