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152 of 163 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon October 21, 2008

+Enticing storyline full of philosophy and intrigue
+Fantastic voice acting brings the already fantastic story to life
+Lots of variety in the gameplay
+Great sound effects
+Great music score
+All around beautiful game
+The atmosphere of the game never settles


-There's not much in terms of difficulty when you can always respawn
-There may not be enough new content to justify paying sixty dollars if you've already got the 360 version

In 2007 as I'm sure many know, Bioshock was released on the XBOX360. The game went on to become a huge classic and sell over a million copies. Earlier this year, it was announced the game would go to the Playstation 3. At first glance, it may not seem worthwhile to buy the game on the Playstation 3 if you played the 360 version, but some of the additions and enhancements just might change the minds of some gamers.

In the beginning of the game you are an unnamed man who happens to be on a plane that crashes seemingly out in the middle of nowhere. Luckily, however, there is a lighthouse in sight. Once you step inside it is quite clear that this is no ordinary lighthouse and soon you descend in the undersea world of Rapture. Rapture is a totally free society in which no one is ruled by anyone, and it was built by a man named Andrew Ryan. Unfortunately, Rapture is anything but perfect. The once perfect world has now become imperfect and is overrun with splicers who thrive on Adam.

Bioshock has an incredible story that digs much deeper than simply being about a central antagonist and protagonist. In the end it'll make you think. It's a very absorbing game. Even is how it looks. It looked incredible on the XBOX360, but the visual experience is enhanced on the Playstation 3 and it looks even better than it did before. Much of it looks very real. Even better is the artistic design and attention to detail. The atmosphere itself is absorbing as well and really makes the world come alive.

Throughout the city you'll also find recorded radio diaries that give you a good idea of what happened to Rapture. The voice acting in these diaries, and throughout the games various cutscenes is incredible. It really helps anyone become absorbed into the world.

Playing Bioshock is an even better experience. At it's heart it is a first person shooter. You'll find weapons that you can use to take down the splicers. Throughout Rapture you'll also find plasmids which you can use to help you take down certain enemies. Some Plasmids can be used to electrocute splicers, or manipulate others. There's a lot to BioShock's gameplay that makes it interesting. In addition to the weapons and plasmids you can also hack the shopping arcades to lower prices, as well as hack security cameras and gun turrets to help you out against your enemies.

There's nothing incredibly difficult about it's gameplay. It's simple enough. Perhaps a little too simple. Bioshock is not a game where you ever really permanently die. If you happen to die you'll respawn from a Vita-Chamber where you'll be able to go right back up to the enemy that killed you. The enemy's health never changes. So essentially, if you're stuck you can keep respawning until you kill whatever it is giving your trouble. This essentially means BioShock is never too difficult. You may get tired of dying, but you can never die permanently.

What exactly is new in Bioshock on the PS3? Well, the graphics are smoother and you get a new difficulty setting. While the new difficulty is enticing, it doesn't really add too much. The enemies are stronger and you pick up less ammo etc., but it's not really enough to entice anyone who owns the 360 version to really pick this one up. So if you've played one of the previous versions of Bioshock, there isn't really too much here that makes it worth getting again. At least not for the price tag of the game itself.

Bioshock is still an amazing game even a year later. It may not be worth it to buy the PS3 version if you've played the XBOX360 version already, but if you have a PS3 and you haven't played Bioshock yet, it's worth checking out.
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129 of 140 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon October 24, 2008
How's this for a story? A man becomes annoyed with the current world, a world where the great are taken for granted and told that their toils are either for the people, for God or for the government. In response, he creates a fantastic environment, free from all of these turmoils. A place where all the great men and women of the world can create their own inventions without fear of consequence. In this place, men and women could do what they wanted.

If this sounds like Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged, you'd be correct. However, in this particular case, it's also the background story behind Rapture, the under-water city that takes centerplace in Bioshock. Many words have been bandied about about video games and their ability (or inability) to become art; you have folks like Roger Ebert saying the medium as a whole can never attain that goal. My personal thought on this matter was that, as a medium, games haven't made enough strides toward that lofty goal. But Bioshock certainly takes a huge step forward.

Andrew Ryan is a visionary the likes of which his namesake Ayn Rand would possibly write about in Atlas Shrugged. He exemplifies the qualities of a Randian hero and showcases Rand's philosophy of objectivism. He created the city of Rapture and filled it, much like John Galt in Atlas Shrugged, with the visionaries of his land. Rapture soon was a thriving city that emphasized science and growth and the importance of the individual. They dabbled in creating plasmids that changed a person's DNA, enabling them to do feats the likes of which had never been seen before.

Then something happened.

Flying over the Atlantic sea, you are Jack, a person who was destined for greatness, if you ask his parents, and whose plane is now crashing into the sea. Jack is apparently the only survivor of the plane wreck and swims to a lone building, a light house it seems, that beckons him onward. Eventually, he goes into a blathysphere and enters into the world of Rapture. But this isn't the Rapture originally envisioned in the pre-recorded film he watches as he journeys into the city. It is a city comprised of deadly machines, once-human monstrosities named Splicers who are insane and, of course, the Big Daddies and Little Sisters.

Bioshock concerns itself with the gray area between right and wrong. This dichotomy between right and wrong is what fuels everything in Rapture. Roaming the landscape, the Little Sisters are twisted abominations of little girls who locate corpses (which they call "Angels") and harvest Adam from them with a long needle. More grotesque is that bottle at the other end of the needle that the Little Sisters drink from. Dutifully following them are the Big Daddies, giant brutes in ancient diving gear. These...things...are at the heart of the story and Jack's survival depends on them and whether he can harvest the Little Sisters or set them free.

The conscience of the gamer is represented in two mysterious figures, Atlas (another allusion to Rand) and Dr. Tenenbaum. Atlas seemingly wants Jack to save his family and explains that the Little Sisters are anything but the human girls they appear. He nudges Jack to put them out of their misery and take the Adam they harvest so he can survive and save Atlas and his family. On the other shoulder perches Tenenbaum, another mysterious individual who created the Little Sisters and seems to want to do anything possible to save them. They are the obvious angel and devil sitting on Jack's shoulder, but the question is...which one is the angel?

To go into further detail would be to spoil this amazing story. Along the route, twists and turns abound with moral, ethical and philosophical questions aplenty. What's interesting is the way Bioshock presents a stark opposition to Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism. Rand's heroes always contain the same qualities that Andrew Ryan exemplifies. But here, the artists behind Bioshock seem to be questioning these qualities by presenting a situation so familiar to Atlas Shrugged, and yet, so far removed.

It is literate, thoughtful, disturbing and moving. Even if the gameplay didn't live up to the story, Bioshock would be worthy just for this reason.

Luckily, that's not the case. For the gun hungry, sure, Rapture is filled with guns aplenty and even presents opportunities for you to craft your own upgrades. But that is just scratching the surface. Everything goes back to the story. Plasmids are located across the ruined debris of Rapture and contain the keys to recreating your DNA. Some early examples of Plasmids are the ability to shoot electricity from your hands to being able to set things on fire to telekinesis.

But these plasmids aren't only used for fighting. Minor puzzle-solving crops up, some of which require plasmids in the same way as gear in Legend of Zelda. The biggest puzzle is how to take down the game's variety of enemies. While you can definitely charge in, guns blazing and sometimes survive, cases will present themselves where such tactics will end with you on the bad end of the Big Daddies' drill. Instead, you can create your own traps and war zones. Using plasmids, the environment and, of course, your weapons, you can create elaborate traps that will bring a smile to your face.

A lot of games coming out right now that use the Unreal 3 engine don't look as spectacular as they could. In particular, character models tend to look shiny and/or completely ugly. This is not the case with Bioshock. Everything comes together, from the disturbing scenery, the art deco architecture to the the insane creatures and characters populating the world. Shadows and lighting also create a sense of atmosphere that drips heavily, much like the water pouring down the walls. It's stunning. The only complaint (and it is minor) is that the frozen portions you can melt don't look very convincing. When things melt, they don't leave anything behind. The only reason it sticks out is that the rest of the game is absolutely beautiful and amazingly crafted.

None of this would be as effective, though, without superior sound. And Bioshock has that (mostly) in spades. The voice work is stunning throughout and the actors provide a great sense of dread. The audio diaries do an exemplary job of providing the backstory, but also work the best in crafting dread and terror. Some of the most disturbing things occur listening to them. Unfortunately, sometimes the characters' lines are repeated too often, ruining the disturbing nature of their dialogue. Musically, the game is also amazing. It flits into the picture at key moments, increasing the tension before it will flow away. You might not even notice it's there, but that's why it's so good.

You know, the funny thing about hype is how people react to it. Game journalists can go blue in the face trying to get people interested in forgotten gems such as Psychonauts, Beyond Good & Evil and Stranger's Wrath, and since they weren't financially successful they become these gems. When a game sells incredibly well and is hyped to the max (both of which fit Bioshock), people say "over-rated."

Ignore the hype machine. I know you're tired of hearing about it. But give Bioshock a try, if you haven't yet. Download the demo for your PC or try it on the Playstation 3 Network. It is a game that's definitely worth everything that's been said about it and more.

It is art. And no words by ignorant movie critics will change that.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on October 21, 2008
For awhile, Bioshock was the clincher when it came down to next-gen consoles. With only money and room for one, I had to choose which system to get so when it was announced the highly acclaimed game was being released to the Playstation 3, well I was sold. Not only being able to play multiplatform games but also some solid exclusives, the important thing was that I had to play this. A game that gets this much praise has got to end up disappointing considering the hype, not only from press and critics but my own anticipation, right? Well wrong as this is one of the most captivating games I've played recently and whether you got an Xbox 360 or a PS3 (keyword being "or"), Bioshock's a must-play.

Story: In the mid 1940's, an ambitious man named Andrew Ryan got fed up with the bureaucrats, politicians and religious leaders trying to see who can control the populace with the most restrictions from medical experiments to freedom of speech. So he secretly created the world of Rapture, a vast city found underwater. In 1960, an unnamed man travelling on a plane finds himself the sole survivor when the plane crashes in the middle of the ocean. Swimming to a nearby lighthouse, he accesses a bathysphere which takes him to Rapture only instead of finding a thriving city, it's in disarray and strange folk genetically modified roam the halls. You have to work your way through the city and discover why the idyllic city has failed.

Graphics: There's certain games that really make you feel a part of the world as opposed to just controlling someone on the screen and like games such as Dead Space, Resident Evil 4 or more serene landscapes such as Shadow of the Colossus, Bioshock is another game that, without fear of sounding cheesy, really transports you to another time and place. The art design, attention to detail and a genuine realism really get you thinking you're in this city under the sea. Fantastic water effects and a feel recreating the old 1940's complete with neon graphics, old-school advertisements not to mention the views outside the windows, this is definately one to HDTV.

Sound/Music: Another important part of the game's immersion is the sound design which has all the requisite noises of a place that's been decimated: groans, distant rumblins and things busting out of nowhere, the sound helps create an unnerving atmosphere. It's not necessarily scary but it certainly keeps you on your toes. Also welcome is the voice acting though the 2 main speakers seems to be Andrew Ryan (portrayed by Armin Shimerman, Quark from "Star Trek" and the first Principal on "Buffy") and Atlas, your CODEC so to speak. The Splicers, the genetically modified residents of Rapture, also have strange ramblings and makes them be set apart from just the screeching of other enemies.

Gameplay: Essentially this is a FPS though don't think that's all it is. The key with Bioshock is variety and it's surprising how much combat strategies you can develop on the fly. Basically, your fighting is separated into 2 methods: typical gun stuff like pistols, shotguns, grenade launchers etc while the other is the "Plasmids", a medical breakthrough involving genetic experimentation, which allows you different abilities. Use Incinerate to light your foes on fire or find an oil spot on the floor and burn that when they're standing on it for even more burnage. Also, say you light him/her on fire and you think they're going to want to find a water source right? Well thanks to Rapture getting the occasional leak, they're not too far so if they've gone for a bit of a swim, just use your electricity and shock the water. There's others as well such as using your telekinesis to grab grenades and bombs in mid-air and toss em back or reposition traps to your advantage. There's more to be found and approaching combat as never been

Don't think that's the end of it though as occasionally you'll be seen by a camera, sending in flying armed drones. Sure it's easy to just blow them up but why not hack them using a pipe-based minigame (tedious but works well enough) to make your own personal bodyguards? Or hack a turret and you can even hack health stations in case enemies want to cure themselves only to find because you've hacked it that it makes things worse for them. Hacking ammo, item and inventing "jukeboxes" will also decrease the amount of money you have to pay which is a definate plus. Only thing is the pipe minigame where you have to make water flow from one part to the other using different panel forms grows kind of tiresome and there's even some where I ran out of pieces or room to move thanks to dead-ends.

All of this will come into use when you hear a roar nearby and you know one thing: a Big Daddy is near. Walking around the hallways is a big dude in diving gear (dude on the cover) protecting a girl called the Little Sister who has in her body ADAM, the genetic material vital to Rapture. In order to get it you have to kill the protector and this bugger is as tough as he sounds. Thankfully with the turrets and bodyguard drones (which admittedly don't last long) to using Enrage on nearby enemies which will actually attack him instead of you, eventually you'll defeat him. Only thing is that you have to do it in stages since you'll frequently die though thankfully nearby Vita-Chambers spawn you back in with his health where you last left off thereby not negating all that hard work. Makes the game easy sure but on the other hand, it never becomes frustrating and you can just play and play and not worrying about hitting dead ends.

That's one thing to be aware of with this game as well: it's rather addicting and it's one of those games where you might look at the clock and go "well I can afford to play a bit more, it's only a simple objective anyway" only to find out it's 4 AM and needing to get to bed. I was that hooked and despite its hefty 5 Gig install - which is strangely shorter than Devil May Cry 4's 20 minute one - which lasts 10 minutes or so, Bioshock is definately a game to get for your Playstation 3. As for people who already have the 360 version, well unless you're that into the game, you don't really have to bother but for non-360 owners like myself or people who never played it than definately go for it.
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon October 22, 2008
I don't think that I can possibly say how much fun this game is so far. I'm well into the 10 hour plus mark of Bioshock and time is flying by.

The story is that your plane crashes in the middle of the Atlantic and you discover a secret society where something has gone horribly wrong. That's the fun part. You get to explore this entire underwater utopia where lots of things want to kill you. And it's set in 1960 so the art and technology pays homage to the 50's.

This is the PS3 version. I know that there are 2 other versions for the Xbox 360 and the PC. However this is the only one that I have played. So I can't compare this to either of the other two versions. Regardless, I'm blown away by the graphical detail and the sound. There's always some noise in the background where you know there's some creepy enemy doing something but you haven't found them yet. Or they haven't found you yet.... It's a fun FPS but with a lot more story than most and a bit more thinking.

Buy this! Much much fun.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on October 21, 2008
I will put it simply: If you only get one game for the rest of your life, Bioshock should be it. This game simply Amazes you: it has possibly the most intriguing plot that is fit for an oscar movie. The visuals too will constantly amaze, from finely detailed industrial structures to the many weapon models (everything from machine guns to whale harpoons) . The gameplay is truly great, very good controls and the ability to basically use and throw almost everything in the game environement. Bioshock is one of those monumental experiences you'll never forget, and the benchmark against which games for years to come will, and indeed must, be measured. It is no wonder that Bioshock is the highest rated game by all the video game press today, right up there with GTA IV.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon April 30, 2011

+ Beautiful, detailed world to explore in a first-person perspective
+ Several upgradable weapons & superhuman abilities
+ Morality-based game endings
+ A completely justifiable purchase at Greatest Hits pricing


- Some areas are unmarked on the maps
- Easily missed trophies can make the game frustrating


The year is 1960. The game starts with a plane crash and our main character (Jack) is the only survivor. After swimming to a lighthouse, we reach a bathysphere and descend into the underwater society of Rapture...a world created by Andrew Ryan. He was frustrated with the rules and regulations of the surface world, so he started an attempted utopia - which has fallen into a decidedly dystopian state.

As we explore Rapture, we learn its inhabitants have undergone some horrifying changes. The scientists/geneticists of Rapture learned how to splice DNA so anyone could gain new abilities: telekinesis, pyrokinesis, cryokinesis...but repeated gene splicing proved to be as addictive as heroin. These de-gene-erates are shadows of their former selves, and will kill anyone who gets in the way of their lust for ADAM - the substance that makes Rapture go `round.


BioShock is presented in a first-person shooter view. Jack's right hand takes control of the various weaponry including guns, flamethrowers, grenade launchers, and so forth.

His left hand is in control of the Plasmids - these include abilities such as throwing bolts of electricity, encasing enemies in ice, hurling fireballs, and much more. These abilities can be found, bought, or created throughout the game.

The transition between plasmids and hand-to-hand weapons is very smooth - just a press of the L1 or R1 buttons.

Jack also has the ability to hack machines like security cameras and gun turrets to turn the tables on his enemies, and he can hack safes and vending machines to get more goodies or buy items at a discounted price. You can also hack door codes to get into locked areas.

Research photos can be taken of each enemy, which provides damage bonuses and other upgrades.

A good portion of your time will be spent trying to upgrade Jack's abilities for the dangers that are surely to come as the game continues. The only way to purchase new abilities is with a substance called ADAM, and ADAM can only be obtained by taking it from small girls genetically altered into "Little Sisters". Each Little Sister has a protector - a "Big Daddy."

Fighting a Big Daddy is akin to a mouse fighting a gorilla, but if you defeat him, you have the option to either Harvest or Rescue the Little Sister...and the choices you make will affect the game's ending, similar to the morality gameplay mechanic in Fallout 3.


To be perfectly honest, I usually hate first-person shooter games because they rarely offer much in the way of storyline. What can I say, I'm a sucker for a good story.

BioShock is one of the only shooter games that made me forget I was playing a shooter game, if that makes any sense. The storyline compelled me to push further into Rapture, I found myself genuinely concerned for the plight of the Little Sisters, and I had a sense of true satisfaction when I finally finished the game and eventually earned the Platinum trophy.
It was only afterwards that I realized I voluntarily played a shooter game all the way through, three times. And I consider that time well spent.


There are 54 trophies to earn and 12 more if you purchase the BioShock Challenge Rooms package.

At times it feels like game designers throw in trophies for the sole purpose of making us insane...but this is one of the few games I've encountered where earning trophies actually makes you a better game player.

For example: The first time through the game, you might rush through and not do the photo research, which in turn makes the game harder. While you earn the research photo trophies, you unlock damage bonuses and upgrades (such as automatic hacks for turrets). When you start playing the game on Survivor difficulty, since you know researching enemies will make the game easier, you'll be eager to play the paparazzi early on to make your battles less time-consuming.


There are very few cons to this game, but I feel they are worth mentioning.

Some of the levels branch into other areas, but they are not marked on the maps. If you're a trophy hound, you will definitely be backtracking a lot, and you'll get lost without a strategy guide. Thankfully, there are plenty to be found out there.

Some of the trophies can be missed (such as Weapon Specialist) and you'll have no idea why or how you missed them until it's too late. Since the game autosaves, unless you had a backup at an earlier point, you have to start all over again. Again, this is preventable by checking a strategy guide.


BioShock took me a while to love, but it grew on me and I consider it a worthwhile gaming experience. It's probably the only shooter game I've ever played that made me forget I was playing a shooter game, and that's not easy to do.

To say that Ken Levine did a top-notch job creating BioShock sounds like I'm selling the game short. I would definitely recommend it.

A special shout-out to my compadre AJ, who asked me "Would you kindly buy this before you leave the store? This shooter's got soul, so give it a shot."
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon November 9, 2010
Because this game has been around for a few years, I'm gonna skip over some crucial gameplay elements and just list some nitpicks I think newcomers ought to be aware of. I really like this game, and recommend it to every fan of action gaming and/or immersive narratives like "Half-Life 2" or "Dead Space". But, it has some flaws that I think are worth discussing.

The basic gist of "BioShock" is that after a plane crashes, you quickly find solace in a lighthouse (I think) that leads to the underwater city of Rapture. When you get there, unspeakable horrors --- past and present --- await. Rather than just shooting your way out of trouble, you quickly acquire Plasmids. These Plasmids (and other tonics, etc) give you enhanced abilities. You will acquire defensive abilities (i.e. less damage from bullets), offensive enhancements (i.e. stronger damage when using a wrench), and superpowers (i.e. electricity bolts, telekinesis). Along the way, you are guided via radio to survive the ordeal, while doing some exploration to discover Rapture's secrets.

How you experience Rapture is my first nitpick. Let me be clear about this --- Rapture is one of the most magnificent creations in any form of entertainment. Designing this city to be both beautiful and logical must've been both a true joy and a huge pain in the ass. However, I personally felt a bit overwhelmed from start to finish. Quite frankly, I found the arrow guide at the top of the screen to be a big distraction, so I turned it off. This in turn made the levels very confusing, making the map feature a Godsend. I know it's a strange gripe to say the developers and artists went too far when most games feel like they lack ambition. But after seeing all of these beautiful rooms and creations, I sometimes asked myself, "So what?" Strange reaction, I know.

The mission objectives boil down to going to a room, finding an object, going to another room, and using your Action prompt further the story. Pretty much every shooter does this, but if you're looking for a different tasks like "Survive for a time limit" or "Protect this important character", there is very little variety overall. I suppose that would've made "BioShock" too complicated since the greatest strength is searching the area for all kinds of ammos and power-ups.

One other issue I found is the amount of radio chatter and the number of audio recordings. Like the overall level design, it's a tad overkill. Because Rapture has been through all kinds of devastation, it wouldn't have made sense to have a lot of story developments unfold before your eyes. However, the recordings are often placed in inconvenient locations, with enemies and security bots waiting to attack you. So, you often have to go back and listen to the recordings later. Same deal with the radio instructions: You usually get them at a time when you can't hear them clearly. Maybe most players don't have these problems with the recordings and radio transmissions, but I often felt a sense of displacement with the game. "BioShock" does a great job of putting you in awe, but a little more clarity would've been great. I got the basic idea when I reflected on it all, but the first-time playthrough was disorienting.

Some hardcore gamers may gripe over the Vita-Chambers. When you die, the default setting is that you simply revive at a nearby chamber, and continue the game exactly where you left off, with your enemies as damaged as they were before. The great news is that if hate that you can't die, there's an Option to turn off the Vita-Chambers if you want to survive the old-fashioned way. "BioShock" continues to provide options for gamers for your personal tastes. One customizable option that was a problem no matter what was the subtitles: They're too much in the way when they're on, and I could barely hear what people are saying when they're off. Then again, maybe it's just my personal tastes.

The concept of personalization carries over to the shooting mechanics, which may be too loose for FPS fans, especially since a single hit can really disorient you. In the grand scheme of things, I think the variety of ways to play "BioShock" makes up for it. For example, you can choose to use your guns, rely on your powers, or get up close and whack `em with one of the best melee weapons in video game history: The Wrench. The initial confusion with picking all those upgrades & power-ups soon reveals itself to let you tailor your own playthrough.

If I may compare these comments to another PS3 game, some people didn't like how "Metal Gear Solid 4" went from a stealth-centric game to a more action-packed experience. What those naysayers might've forgotten though is that the traditional MGS gameplay was still there for them to enjoy if they wanted to; they didn't have to go with the flow of the new options if they didn't want to. With "BioShock", if you want to stick the traditional FPS methods, you can. But if you hate shooters, there are still plenty of options with for you to enjoy "BioShock".

Speaking of the PS3, it was reported by some reviews that the graphics were overall better but the framerate issues remained. I only experienced the occasional framerate stutter when I did the software update after downloading some mandatory PS3 updates. If there's a way to avoid the upload or stay offline, I recommend it. For whatever reason, "BioShock" was literally flawless until this update for me, and I think getting connected to the downloadable content might've affected the game a bit. Still, this is a VERY minor quibble, and maybe it was just my console. Check message boards and discussions for more info.

So...why have I decided to tell what's not great about "BioShock" instead of giving it the high praise it deserves? Simple, because I get frustrated when I play games that receive endless 10-out-of-10s, Perfect scores, and Game-of-the-Year awards when there are much better titles --- in my opinion --- available of the same kind. "BioShock" is not the best first-person game I've ever played, but it's still pretty damn good, and easily worth buying with its low price. I will give "BioShock" this much credit: There's really nothing else like it, and that alone makes it worth a peek. If you're more forgiving and less picky than I am, please stop reading and buy this game right away. Rapture Awaits!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on February 8, 2009
My first PS3 game.

Graphics are great, good game to play in the dark...pretty spooky.

I am not a huge FPS fan so on normal mode I was struggling and had to change it to easy which made it not quite as fun or scary because it became to easy. In fact it's getting downright boring so I'm going to switch it back to normal and get back into it because it really is a great game.

Not what I expected AT ALL, this game sure through me for a loop at first. I thought I had it all figured out before I even tried it out, but the storyline is something very different and cool.

Great game, not the best but there's much much worse out there....

UPDATE: okay last night I put it back on normal difficulty and the game is fun again. the splicers freak me out again because I know I can no longer take them out with one hit and the big daddy's are a pain in the butt. but that really made the difference. i just wish i didn't suck so bad at video games especially FPS....easy is just too easy and normal is a good challenge for the folks like me who just can't get used to FPS....4.5 stars!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on November 2, 2008
Wow! This game truly deserves all of the hype that it gets. It's one of the best FPS' that I've ever played. I am a big fan of the survival horror genre and this is one of the greatest I've played. ( I wasn't even aware that it was part of this genre when I bought it.) I'll keep this review brief due to the fact there are some great reviews for this game that have done a perfect job of nailing down the essence of this game. I will say that there are many times when you are playing this game where you have to "stop and smell the roses". Don't just run through this one like most FPS'. I find myself stopping to look out a window or stare at picture since the art in this game is absolutely gorgeous. The art deco feel to everything insures that this game will stand out for a long time. As you probably know the gameplay is equally as impressive. You really benefit from thinking a little first about a good strategy rather than running and gunning. With this and Fallout 3 on my shelves I will be busy for a long time. Buy this one and enjoy!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon December 5, 2008
Not since Resident Evil 4 have I gotten so intensely immersed in a game. What a cool game Bioshock is. Let me say up front that I haven't finished it, and I don't want to be finished. I have played for at least 15 hours and I don't get the impression that I'm even close to finishing.

I'm sure that I could have gotten a lot farther in the game than I am a lot faster, but you can prolong the game by exploring areas that may not be the most direct route to your goal. And I spend a lot of time exploring. These little explorations are usually fruitful, because hidden throughout the expansive game are all kinds of weapons, perks and information about where you've suddenly found yourself captive: In the underwater city of Rapture.

The game begins with you as the sole survivor of a mid-sea plane crash. You swim to what appears as a lighthouse, but is also the entrance to Andrew Ryan's underwater utopian city of Rapture. Did I say utopian? Well, that may have been the original idea, but the Rapture you ultimately find yourself in is the antithesis of a utopia. I believe the term is dystopia.

You soon start receiving radio transmissions from Ryan, a guy named Atlas and a doctor named Tennenbaum with advice on how to proceed in the game. Unfortunately, the advice you get often conflicts. Atlas and Ryan are clearly at war. And I'm not far enough in the game to even know for sure whose side Tennenbaum is on...but I've got a good feeling about her is all I'll say.

You are given goals and roadblocks o'plenty to prevent you from easily reaching your goals. The few people (called Splicers) left in Rapture that you run into have all gone stark raving mad, and they'll ruin your day if you let them get too close. And don't trip a security alarm; it'll summon armed drones and more Splicers.

Oh yeah, that Big Daddy guy in the old fashioned divers suit on the cover of the game case...they're roaming all over Rapture. Big, slow, doofy things, right? Mmmm hmmm...word to the wise: Don't get it mad. Sometimes the Big Daddies have Little Sisters in tow that seem to be inspecting corpses (um, yeah, corpses) strewn around either because you did some damage or...something else did. Mess with a Little Sister?...Over a Big Daddy's dead body! Atlas says kill `em; Tennenbaum says save `em...what to do...what to do?

You get all kinds of weapons and opportunities to upgrade your weapons. R1 switches through the weapons and R2 fires. A pistol. A Shotgun. A chemical thrower. A grenade launcher. You're well equipped. (I'm at the part where you're given the crossbow.) You even get a camera to take pictures that allow you to conduct research on your foes to increase the damage you can inflict on them and lessen the damage that they inflict on you (don't worry...all you have to do is take the dang picture; the research is done automatically).

In addition to the corpses strewn throughout the game, so is ammo, money and other knick-knacks that will help you progress through the game. Just be sure to search everything if you want to maximize your strength.

And speaking of maximizing your strength, one of the first things you get is Plasmids...or put another way...special abilities. Telekinesis. Pyrokinesis. And a bunch of other Plasmid "kinesises" are unlocked pending your ability to find them. Try picking something heavy up with your telekinesis and throwing it at your enemy...better yet, plant a few proximity mines on that thing before you toss it! Switch through your Plasmids with L1 and use `em with L2.

You're also granted "tonics" to customize your character with. Stuff like armor, various strengths, first aid boosts, and secondary damage your enemies from your weapons or from just plain old being attacked. Really cool stuff.

Like the Ganados in Resident Evil 4, the Splicers in Bioshock become quite annoying and redundant, but I suppose that's the idea. Your goals change all the time. Just when you think you've attained a critical backfires or you're immediately given another that requires backtracking...and then backtracking again. But rest assured it never gets boring. The eerie atmospheres and creepy environments that Bioshock's creators have put together are more than effective. Some areas are really creepy, and there's nothing worse than not being able to find your way out of those which isn't always easy. But that's the fun!

The game lets you save at any time, and when you restart play it starts you at the exact place you last saved...not at the last checkpoint. Pretty cool.

If you liked RE4 or those kinds of survival / horror games...Bioshock is for you. Add this to your cart. And watch for Bioshock 2: Sea of Dreams next year sometime.

(P.S.--I know that video game to big screen conversions mostly seem to fail, but I've got high hopes for the 2010 movie adaptation of Bioshock with the Pirates of the Caribbean Trilogy's Director Gore Verbinski at the helm. Verbinski is no Uwe Boll!)
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