BioShock the new king of first-person shooters

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A perfect score scarcely begins to explain the compelling genius of BioShock. Every few years, there comes a game so incredible it makes everyone talk and sets a new standard for all that follow. BioShock goes beyond.

A perfect score scarcely begins to explain the compelling genius of BioShock. Every few years, there comes a game so incredible it makes everyone talk and sets a new standard for all that follow. BioShock goes beyond. It is a crowning achievement for 2K games and makes Halo, widely considered the most influential first-person shooter of all time, look preschool. BioShock takes every aspect - narrative, gameplay, sound, graphics - polishes them to a blinding gleam, giving them the most elaborate cinematic qualities ever experienced in a game. Then it slathers everything in terror. BioShock is about a future world set in 1960. The story begins with a plane crash into a dark ocean and as the main character surfaces from the swirling murk, the wreckage is burning and exploding around him. He swims to a concrete structure protruding from the ocean with stairs descending inside to a bathysphere. Once inside you are transported to Rapture, an art deco underwater city serenaded by whale cries and populated by the weirdest mutated freaks. Honestly, the characters and narrative are so psychotic and disturbing, Stephen Kings horror novels seem like childrens books in comparison. Once in Rapture, the decisions you make will affect the way the game plays. It is a unique first-person shooter that will alter your DNA and blow your mind. To survive, you need a deep-sea parasite that enables your body to ingest gene tonics and plasmids that enhance your natural abilities. You will learn to heal quickly, create decoy versions of yourself, and turn others mad. You will also learn to control and direct blasts of electricity or fire, to use telekinesis to move and throw objects, and to freeze objects and people then shatter them. Many of the citizens of Rapture have been transformed into violent splicers, crazed from overuse of plasmids and gene tonics, and ready to kill. Theyre so grotesque and quick, you get caught off-guard by their deformities then get wounded from their clawed hands. Adam can be retrieved from infected little girls found roaming the corridors and preying on the corpses littering the city. But each girl is escorted by a large, metal-clad protector with big guns and grenades. You have to defeat the Big Daddy before you can get the Little Sister. Then you will be forced to make a moral dilemma: save the innocent girl still inside the mutated form, or kill her for the Adam. Along the way you will meet variants of the normal citizens and be guided through radio communication as well as voice-recording diaries found lying about. The stories therein will explain what happened in Rapture and why there is so much blood, so many pieces of intestine scattered around, and so many tortured bodies. Four of five stars

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