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On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking

A BioShock 2 article on Kotaku hears from BioShock 2 creative director Jordan Thomas about a couple of ways the gameplay in the underwater shooter sequel departs from the original game. One of the areas being changed is vita-chambers, which can be turned off in the sequel, and as Jordan explains, the vita-chamber exploits from the first BioShock are mitigated by the little sisters healing some of their big daddies' health while you are being reanimated. They also discuss how it will be impossible to backtrack to areas after they are completed, which Jordon confesses is more due to technical limitations than a design decision: "We came down to having to choose between supporting backtracking and much more interesting, readable features ...and decided to invest in things we thought people would actually notice. We also got some knock-on benefits like shorter loading times because of the way the memory was structured once backtracking was no longer an issue." He also explains how any unresolved little sister/big daddy conflicts will not be lost due to lack of backtracking, as they will be added to subsequent levels. Thanks nin.

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56. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 20, 2010, 21:57 Zadig
 
I really don't understand the problem here. Everything of consequence was 'borrowed' from SS2; even bad ideas like respawning enemies. Most of Bioshock was substandard or derivative. That doesn't seem very controversial to me.

I alluded to the economic/political garbage in most of my posts. People being murdered for buying and selling things (smugglers) without getting permission from comrade Andrei. Industries being stolen (nationalized) because the head parasite wants it. Expensive circus freaks sent to recycle adam in the street instead of just paying someone to collect the corpses and doing it in private. None of it has anything to do with "free markets", "capitalism", or whatever the developers thought they were writing about. This was the only element they added to SS2 and it's completely ludicrous.

Bioshock turned out like Deus Ex 2, Thief 3, and the countless X-Com remakes - flawed games that don't compare favorably with their predecessors.
 
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55. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 20, 2010, 14:11 dryden555
 
Verno you might have skimmed my comment -- I didnt say what you are implying I said if you look again. Anyway, no worries if we disagree.  
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54. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 19, 2010, 15:19 Verno
 
You can drill down almost every FPS ever made with that classification then. Enemy variety and random respawns do not make a game a "generic FPS" alone. If you choose to play Bioshock like the latest Call of Duty title then I'm sure that's how your experience will turn out but the point is that the game offers a lot of choice in terms of combat alone just to name one thing.

This comment was edited on Jan 19, 2010, 16:11.
 
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53. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 19, 2010, 14:13 dryden555
 
Bioshock's respawning and undifferentiated enemies were a generic FPS element. Have to agree with Z on that one. Respawning is a leftover from older console shooters and it doesnt belong in a 21st Century shooter.

Not sure if I'd descibe the game as generic over all though.
 
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52. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 19, 2010, 09:31 Verno
 
Not to belabor the point since you seem inclined to be stubborn but there is nothing generic in the gameplay. Your own words "generic FPS play" work against your opinion given that most generic FPS games are 10 shades more boring and feature far less variety and mechanics than Bioshock.

Now you're going on about the plot out of nowhere. Bioshock had many flaws but you are obviously inclined to dislike it for the sake of doing so rather than any informed knowledge about those flaws.

No one can make you like it but your complaints are far off the mark. I'd expected some rage about the plot twist, the highly unnecessary fourth act and the fact that Bioshock wasn't a franchise begging for a sequel. Instead we get this drivel. Oh well.
 
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51. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 18, 2010, 16:07 Zadig
 
Bioshock = Deus Ex 2. Everything interesting was taken from the predecessor while everything new was generic FPS features or utter drivel (the nonsense politics/economics). I'm sorry this upsets you so much.  
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50. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 18, 2010, 06:49 The PC Warrior
 
multiple posters have proven u wrong at this point and you still keep goin. what you lack in brains you sure do make up for in sheer willful ignorance.  
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49. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 17, 2010, 09:28 Zadig
 
It's a completely linear FPS with repetitive enemies & tile-sets. That's a fine definition for generic. Oh, and there's a dollop of gibberish politics splattered on top. The city could've been very interesting (backtracking!), which was the reason I posted, but the developers clearly find a generic console FPS to be a safer bet. It's also much easier for the creatively challenged.  
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48. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 16, 2010, 11:07 The PC Warrior
 
thanks for clearing up what everyone established 20 posts ago.  
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47. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 16, 2010, 05:30 Jerykk
 
Except for the underwater city, everything interesting about Bioshock was borrowed from System Shock. There's nothing else new in there. Hence, "generic FPS". I did not say "heinous FPS".

I don't think sharing similarities with one other game qualifies as generic. Derivative? Sure. A SS2 clone? Why not. Generic? Not quite. A pseudorealistic modern military shooter where you fight terrorists? That's generic. A third-person, cover-based sci-fi shooter where you play as a space marine in huge armor? Generic. Bioshock? Not generic.
 
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46. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 16, 2010, 00:37 The PC Warrior
 
borrowing ideas from system shock isnt generic, youre really stretching for reasons.  
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45. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 15, 2010, 21:12 Zadig
 
Except for the underwater city, everything interesting about Bioshock was borrowed from System Shock. There's nothing else new in there. Hence, "generic FPS". I did not say "heinous FPS". The game provided about 15 mostly enjoyable hours but I doubt I'll play through it again and everything I've read about the sequel has been dire.

Expanding on the city to make the game world open ended would be nice, but it would also require creativity from the developers. It's much easier to churn out another linear, console friendly, FPS.
 
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44. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 15, 2010, 14:08 Prez
 
While it may have lacked some of the complexity and depth of System Shock 2, Bioshock did not seem generic in the least. The immersive atmosphere was brilliant and affecting to me.  
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43. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 15, 2010, 08:57 Verno
 
I don't think you know what a generic FPS is if you think Bioshock is one. Go play Rogue Warrior for awhile.  
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42. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 14, 2010, 23:46 Zadig
 
I walked down corridors and killed the same half dozen enemies again and again and again. That's a generic FPS.

The only things that were out of the ordinary were the city and the incoherent politics; yet the developers don't appear interested in expanding on that.
 
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41. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 14, 2010, 19:22 Roachmojo
 
Aganazer wrote on Jan 13, 2010, 13:51:
Maybe some day we can have a true sequel to SS2 instead of these dumbed down consolized mass market dog turds.

^this
 
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40. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 14, 2010, 14:18 Verno
 
Yes, it was not either of those things. I don't know how much clearer to say it. The gameplay allowed for a good variety of strategies and it was nothing close to "generic". I have no clue what Bioshock you played, the one I played was no System Shock but it also wasn't a Fear or late-Quake title.

It's hard to blame the game if you just sit there and pew pew with guns when you have other options available to you. Use your imagination sometime, the game allowed you a fairly deep amount of options for combat and customization. Generic is Halo.

This comment was edited on Jan 14, 2010, 14:20.
 
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39. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 14, 2010, 12:02 Wowbagger_TIP
 
Except that Bioshock wasn't either of those things.
Neither of what things? Not a rail shooter? Not a generic console based FPS? Those seem pretty accurate to me. Maybe you were referring to some other description?
 
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38. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 14, 2010, 10:28 Verno
 
Except that Bioshock wasn't either of those things.  
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37. Re: On BioShock 2 Vita-Chambers and Backtracking Jan 14, 2010, 10:15 Zadig
 
"Backtracking" (i.e. creating a fascinating world that you'd actually want to explore) is clearly a plus, but it would require the developers to aspire to something better than "generic console based FPS".

It's especially sad since the city itself is one of the only interesting things about the game, but they crippled it by making a silly rail shooter sprinkled with lowbrow marxist/randroid dogma.
 
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