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BioShock Postmortem

BioShock 'was a sequence of failures and errors' on Develop has 2K Boston's Chris Kline's interesting comments on missteps made during the development of the submerged shooter:

"Bioshock was basically a sequence of failures and errors," he said. "But every one of them was a good thing - it forced us to look at the game and reassess what we had, which worked in our favour."

Charting the development of the product back to 2002, Kline pinpointed almost a dozen points at which wrong decisions or wrong paths were taken, ranging from bad middleware decisions right at the start of the project to the team's original misguided decision to simply remake System Shock 2, a game that had failed commercially despite universal critical acclaim.

One of the original differential points for Bioshock was to be its self-sustained AI ecology, which Kline called "life around you, but also without you". While impressive results came from months of intensive focus on these interactions, it soon became apparent to the team that it was incredibly boring without any player involvement in this ecology. This forced the team to rethink not only the entire system but also the designs of the AI agents themselves to make them more interesting and empathic.

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6. Re: Mistake..? Jun 24, 2008, 01:43 Shadowcat
$20 says no one would have bought it again.
I'm convinced that if SS2 (a) had slightly better graphics (the infamous polygon budget discrepancy was a real shame regarding the character models), but more importantly (b) had a truly monumental marketing campaign (such as Bioshock enjoyed) then it would have sold like hot cakes.

SS2 did not having anything like that level of marketing and media coverage behind it.

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