Tara Voelker's thoughts. A lot about video games, a little about life
Bioshock is a first person shooter/ role playing game from the minds of 2K Boston/2K Australia. It was released August 21, of 2007 for the Xbox 360 and PC, with a PS3 version following it about a year later. (I’ve heard there’s also some special extras on the PS3 version that I’m definitely going to have to look into…) Bioshock is like no other horror game in my repertoire. I recently obtained it for PC as a gift, and knew that it was time to finally sit down and have some personal time with this title.
I noticed right off the bat how flighty the mouse controls are. If you ever so slightly push the mouse any direction, that cursor on screen just flies! This was moderately remedied by a fix in the control options, as you can adjust your mouse specs on several levels of sensitivity. You can also bind all of your keys easily, and turn the music off without having it hinder you game play. (I’ve encountered problems with that in the past) I find that this game has some EXTREME load times on PC. I sat for about 3-5 minutes waiting for it to load up. This lag time in loading seems to occur when you first load up or enter a new area. I thought my computer was crashing at first, and ended up shutting it down, and having to endure it again once re- booted. I thought maybe these obscene load times were just my computer, so I moved the game to my XPS laptop, instead of my HP desktop. Nope. This game is just massive, and takes some time to load, so you have to be patient.
You play as a chap named Jack, and with weapons and plasmids at your disposal, (something I would have like to have seen with the title is melee use with your guns) you make your way through Rapture, an underwater metropolis full of disfigured flappers and crazed doctors. They all are very chatty, and give their positions away well in advance, which is different for a horror game. This game does constitute some stealth tactics which makes it fun and interesting as well. One of your main focuses in Rapture is to avoid being seen by any security cameras as you make your way through. (There’s a time and a place for run and gun, but Bioshock will keep you on yours toes with those pesky cameras) Or, you could do as the trigger fingers do, and just blast any that you see. Be careful though, if it sees you and you don’t get out of the way fast enough, they will summon baddies for you to fight off while a timer counts down how long till they’re off your back. But worry not! You can hack into nearby baddy bots and make them into allies that attack your foes on their own accord.
In this game, as you make your way through the levels, you have to the option to kill or save little girls, also known as “Little Sisters”. This is cool because it’s a test for you on your morality. It doesn’t, per say, effect your game play, but if you save them whenever encountered, you get a little less Adam; the currency you use to buy special plasmids for your character. However, by making the obviously more humane choice, you are promised something wonderful in return. (I always like the walk to good path when I play games… the first time…) But there is one BIG obstacle standing in your way of saving or harvesting each Little Sister. They each have a body guard that they call Mr. Bubbles, but you will come to know as The Big Daddy. This may be strange of me, but.. I really don’t think the Big Daddy is all that scary. I actually think some can be kinda cute. I won’t lie, I felt a big guilty when I killed my first one..
But I digress.. Bioshock is a great game. Personally, I wouldn’t call it so much “scary” or “freaky” as I would call it intense. It’s definitely a title I would recommend to the seasoned gamer, as the feel takes some getting used to due to firing recoil, quick action requirements, and somewhat jerky controls. (for PC) If the game seems a bit hard, you can modify its difficulty while in game, and you will notice the difference. This is a great title for those who are fans of FPS and horror games with a little more of a steam punk edge.