Feeds
60%

Bioshock 2

Successful sequel shock?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Environmental degradation

In this, Bioshock 2 is at least excused by its particular brand of combat. Fast and furious, and with a superabundance of weapons and plasmids at your disposal, it is essential to revert to the game-pausing radial menu to change strategy effectively mid-combat. While regular pauses in combat reinforce its RPG credentials and, as in Fallout 3, never detract, they dilute any intended improvement in the introduction of dual-wielding.

Fast and furious combat

Fast and furious

Environments also compare poorly with the first game. Bioshock's developer 2K Marin has done little to improve upon the original’s use of the Unreal Engine, especially noticeable given the recent bar raising seen in Mass Effect 2 and Batman: Arkham Asylum. It’s disappointing, then, that Rapture, perhaps again constrained by its very nature, spreads out before the player in uninspired, homogeneous corridors and hallways.

Always intended to evoke claustrophobia, Rapture now feels too close, too stifling. On the odd occasion the environments do differ, it’s for the worse, such as the dingy, insipid and confusing architecture of Dionysus Park. Worse still are the (fortunately) infrequent underwater sections set in the exterior of Rapture’s environs. Short and without peril, these point-to-point walks are at best perfunctory, and at worst just plain pointless.

What ultimately redeems Bioshock 2 is the combat. Here the developers are to be applauded. 2K Marin has chosen to enhance the single best aspect of Bioshock’s combat principles: planning. As in the original, you are able to plan your strategy before instigating a fight with a Big Daddy. Using the environment to your advantage is essential. Turrets, cameras, traps, even pools of water and oil slicks - all can be used to turn the tide of battle in your favour.

Big Daddy

Who's the Big Daddy?

But 2K hasn’t just repeated the successes of the first game here. Taking its cue from Left 4 Dead and Gears of War 2's Horde mode, this mechanic has been expanded with great aplomb. The basic fight-a-big-Daddy is now joined by two other scenarios. The first sees you fending off wave after wave of Splicers as your Little Sister harvests Adam from dead corpses.

Little Sister

"Mr. Bubbles, Mr. Bubbles, are you there? Are you there? Come and give me lolly, come and bring me toffees. Teddy bears... teddy bears."

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nice computers don’t need to go to the toilet, says Barclays
Bad computers might ask if you are Sarah Connor
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS
Old hardware doesn't get any faster with new software
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Microsoft stands on shore as tablet-laden boat sails away
Brit buyers still not falling for Windows' charms
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.