The original Bioshock was a great game in every sense. The primary reason being that it borrowed several game play mechanics from role playing games and had an amazing plot to keep the player involved. So does the sequel get any better? Read on to know the verdict. Let’s talk about the story first. One of the major reasons behind Bioshock’s success was the strong plot lines and I am glad to say that the story in the sequel is pretty much solid as well. The game takes place eight years after the events of Bioshock, but this time around you will be controlling Big Daddy himself. At the start of the game you will be introduced to your daughter, one of the little sisters. But eventually things start going bad. Sofia Lamb, the new leader of Rapture kidnaps the Little Sister. Big Daddy who is actually subject delta is hypnotized by Lamb to kill himself. Ten years later, Subject Delta is revived with the help of the vital chamber and immediately gets psychokinetic signals from the Little Sister, his daughter: Eleanor. Rapture who is already under war waged between the splicers and the Lamb’s army of Big Daddies gives the opportunity for Subject Delta to rescue his daughter and ultimately bring the destruction of Rapture. Once again, the story is told via a number of radio messages and there are no cutscenes unlike other games which heavily depend on them for storytelling. Overall the plot is great but is not required to be understood by the player because there are so many amazing game play elements to be found in the game.
Just like the original the heart of the game play is combat. You will have a great arsenal of weapons and amazing variety of plasmids this time around. I am glad to say that 2K Marin developed new weapons for sequel instead of just recycling the amazing weaponry the team had for the original. My personal favorite was the Drill. It’s powerful enough to take out splicers and competitive enough to stand against the powerful Big Daddies that you will face in the game. You can swing your Drill or “drill” through enemies and obstacles. One of the standout weapons in the game is the Spear Gun. The good thing about this weapon is that when you shoot this at your enemy, it will die on the spot and will cling on the wall and you can get the spear back just by pressing the corresponding button. It’s a good option since you don’t want to spend too much cash on the ammo. Other guns which are included in the game are the Launcher, Shotgun and the Rivet Gun. All of these weapons can be upgraded for more ammo clips and damage. Hacking also makes a return in the sequel but only in a different way to do to the same thing. This time you will be shown a meter and you have to press the button in the right area. If you miss it, you will lose some part of your health. Plasmids make a return too. However there is nothing new as almost all of the plasmids are derived from the original.
However thzy are a ton of fun to use. Plasmids like Insect Swarm and Incinerate were amazing and never got old on me. One new mechanics that I really liked is that you can use both the plasmids and your guns together. Just like the weapons, plasmids are also upgradable in the game. Gene Tonic are an added feature in the game which will give the Big Daddy special features like the player can run pretty fast, less physical damage taken from enemies and the making the needle in the meter go slow while hacking. All these small new features go a long way in to making combat fun. Let’s talk about the enemies now. Splicers make a return and as always will attack you from anywhere. Then there are the brutes, who are occasionally much more tougher than the Big Daddies that you will find in the game. They are very quick and will throw any object on you and will take away a good chunk of your health. You will be facing a ton of Big Daddies across the game, but the toughest of all enemies are the Big Sisters. Their specialty lies in using missiles, quick reflexes and they move quickly, making them hard to spot. The concept of harvesting and adopting the Little sister also makes a comeback. It’s nothing revolutionary, depending on the action you take, you will be awarded with less or more upgrades.
Bioshock 2 is a great looking game. The world of Rapture again has been beautifully represented. Much of the beauty of Rapture is actually visible through the various swimming sections you will find in the game. I had always thought that the original Bioshock had the best color combination for its environments, but the sequels ups the ante by a big margin. Obviously the game is much better looking with realistic environments and believable characters. Sound in the game is amazing. The thunders and the winds hustling when Big Sister is around you and the unique sound that accompanies each of the area makes Bioshock 2 a treat to hear! As I mentioned before, much of the story telling is done through radio, but the voice acting in the same is pretty good.
If you are expecting that BioShock 2 is a revolution compared to its predecessor, then the answer is No. Much of the game play is derived from the original which is actually not a bad thing. The fact that it implements the mechanics of the original so well, makes it an instant buy for any gamer who loves first person shooter games.
Bioshock 2 is available in India for Rs. 699 (PC) & Rs. 2499 (Xbox 360 & PS3)
This game was reviewed on the PlayStation 3.
Once again the underwater world of Rapture is breathtaking, Using Plasmids is a ton of fun, Strong plot
Much of the gameplay is recycled from the original, Not a lot of Plasmid variety
Bioshock 2 does not do anything new, but the tried and tested game play elements of the first game which are employed in to the sequel make it a must buy.