I have been anxiously anticipating Bioshock Infinite since it was first announced a couple of years back, and I was elated when the day it hit stores finally came! With its immense beauty, compelling narrative, deep story, stunning art, and sound direction that will keep you on your toes, Bioshock Infinite aimed to please, and went above and beyond what I expected.
In Infinite, you play as Booker Dewitt, a man with a curiously unknown guilt and a debt that can be relieved solely by capturing a girl named Elizabeth. The reasons behind this quest get unraveled as you play the game further. The journey takes you to Columbia, a gorgeous city in the sky ruled by a religious fanatic called “the prophet.” This city has some pretty deep themes, such as racial segregation, religion, and an abundant amount of internal conflict. Take time to look around at your surroundings as you play, and you will notice many of these themes in posters, paintings, statues, and little details that you might not notice if you try to rush through the game.
The beauty of Infinite is a force to be reckoned with. From its stunning city skylines that float impossibly in the clouds, to its colorful posters spread throughout the city, the art direction in Infinite never ceases to impress. The variation between the different areas is splendid, and will not once leave you bored or feel cut-and-paste. There is marvelous newness around every turn. Every character you see in this game is uniquely clothed in gorgeous early 1900s attire; even the detail in the immigrant workers’ clothes is exquisite! The skylines are also worthy of much admiration. Flying through the sky is everything you would hope it would be, and beckons to our very own dreams of such things.
The fact that you play through Infinite as Dewitt, as opposed to a player-made character, gives you more of an emotional attachment to the character. Dewitt’s background is a mystery, and that really helps drive the story. You WANT to know why he carries such guilt, and you care for him.
Elizabeth is the heart and soul of the game, though. She is a masterful combination of “sweet and innocent” and “I can take care of myself.” She helps you throughout the game by tossing you money, salts, and pointing out loot that you may have missed. The designers did a great job on her – they drew inspiration from the old Disney princesses I grew up with, and gave her expression that delights, intrigues, and makes you want to never let go. The relationship between the two characters is something to be marveled at.
There is a perfect combination of fighting and story in Infinite. The fighting system is a mix of guns and powers (similar to the original Bioshock), otherwise called “vigors.” Release an angry murder of crows on the guys to your left as you gun down the guys on your right, or come in for a melee execution and watch as Dewitt grinds his “sky-hook” into some guy’s neck and throws him across the room. There is also gear scattered throughout the game that gives you buffs for different things like gun accuracy or an increase in your critical hit chance. The aerial combat in the game is something that brings the dreams of many into fruition. Shoot at your adversaries while zipping through the sky and, for some added fun, perform an “aerial execution” by jumping off the sky-line right into your foe whilst executing him in the process. With all the different things you can unleash on your foes, and the mix of things they throw at you, fighting definitely never gets tedious in Infinite.
Bioshock Infinite will have you sympathizing with the characters, hanging on the edge of your seat, developing attachments you don’t ever want to break; it will leave you begging for more. It is a game that is thus far unparalleled and unrivaled. Bioshock Infinite will echo throughout time as a game that raised the bar. All I can say now is go play this breathtaking game.