Thursday, February 14, 2019

Horror Video Game Must Play: BioShock

Horror Video Game Must Play is a line of reviews showcasing the very best horror based/related/themed video games out on the market. All games are considered, so it doesn't really matter if the game is brand spanking new or old as shit. As long as it's enjoyable, the game of choice is considered a must play and should be in any horror fan's game collection. The review for each game is meant to elaborate upon all the details of the game (plot, audio, graphics, and game-play) to display why this is the game to invest in.

No one knows what happens behind closed doors. The things that take place unbeknownst can leave many wondering what is taking place behind that wall, the silence just as unnerving if not unsettling, and that could be one of the most horrifying things to realize. So looking at the sea one could consider that body of water to be a veil covering the face of terror. All that water, one gigantic door, muting the terror.To think that there might be a man who would one day build a city in that horror to get away from all the pressures of the world.

!!!SPOILERS!!! We must look at this games plot through the eye's of our protagonist, "Jack", since that's how we see most of the events take place. The hero of our games winds up in the underwater city of Rapture due to the plane he was on being hijacked by his very self unaware that he was given an hypnotic phrase of "Would you kindly..." for you see oir hero, Jack is a product of conditioning but this is all unbeknownst to him for most of the game. His whole presence shakes up the events that are already taking place in Rapture. He arrives in the middle of a civil war. A power struggle between the founder Andrew Ryan, a visionary who fails to see the hypocrisy he has created  and Atlas, who's really a disguised con man known as Frank Fontaine who just wants to steal the driving substance of the civilization known as ADAM, so he can bring it the surface and make millions off  it. ADAM being a chemical substance produced by a seas slug that can genetically alter the human body to do marvelous things by a manufactured byproduct called plasmids that come in many different flavors. A chance discovery of this is what pretty much leads to the many things that exist now in Rapture that Jack comes across. The creation of Little Sisters that are infused with these sea slugs so they can produces more ADAM than what the sea slug could. Big Daddies, genetically enhanced humans made to serve as guardians to the little sisters. Needing to protect them from Splicers. Most citizen in rapture has become a Splicer all obsessed with being perfect due to there dependence on ADAM, giving them the obsession.There's also the occasional ghost that appears that reveal past happenings to further clue you in on what takes place. Now what the plot ultimately boils down to is doing the right or wrong thing in all of this. Atlas is simply not your friend in all this, he guides you to what he would like you to do for him but luck would have it you will encounter your true guardian angel in Dr Brigid Tenenbaum. She helps Jack if he decides to do the right thing when it comes to a key part in the game when you have to either rescue or harvest a little sister. Jack is taught many philosophical standpoints through out his journey in Rapture but really it comes down to how you interact with the little sister that effect how this tells ends.

Now here's a brief love letter to the sound team, they have done an amazing job with everything, from the sound that you can hear from the sea life being made right outside of rapture to the mad ramblings that the denizens. There are many sounds queues that give off that since of unease or comfort to great effect. Great voice work from every single person involved in this game, everyone sounds like there really talking naturally, even though it's all scripted you wouldn't be able to tell, which adds to this game immersion. Automated machines that have things to sell call out to you to get you to buy something from them, Audio tapes that truly sound like something from a dated era. Even the weapons and abilities sound as they should, well, as far as the weapons go but for a made up abilities it's convincing, the sound of fire snapping fingers, something freezing over, and the electric rumble are all well tuned. This world really does sound like it's alive.

The games graphics are done by a heavily modified Unreal Engine 2.5 with some assets used from Unreal Engine 3. There is some cartoon like quality to the enemies you encounter but nothing laughable. They just look that way due to their self mutilation in pursuit of physical perfection, and the Big Daddies in this game really give off that intimidation. The level design makes every isolated area that you visit look different compared to the last. All of them having there own theme from a indoor garden to factory. The whole city of rapture has only a select amount of areas you're allowed to visit leaving you wanting to explore more of the massive city.

This game allows for complete customization of how you handle any given situation, coming with a buffet of abilities to chose from and allowing for any given playthrough to be completely different from the last.. Although you have all this awesome power at the palm of your hand it doesn't leave you feeling overpowered. You have to handle all enemy encounter with some smart decision making. You can go in hidden and using the environment and enemies to your advantage, or you could go in guns blazing with all the weapons you have to your access to combine with your powers. I simply love the fact that you access to every weapon that you acquire like in DOOM. Better yet there a various ammo types per weapon. Bare in mind that you can't use weapons and powers at the same time but rather just switch back and forth between the two. You can take pictures of all the enemy types allowing research on them so you can have a easier time handling them, which really do take it to you in combat. Plus this game sort of plays like a Metroidvania meaning you have locations you can go back to to handle unsettled business.

BioShock captures a thought on what horror lies under all that water. It's horror elements captures ghost, jump scares and, ugly truths. A Horror Game Must Play.

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