Irrational Games

BioShock Infinite's first DLC might feature a companion other than Elizabeth

T.J. Hafer at

We created a wishlist of things we'd like to see in BioShock Infinite's three, planned story DLCs. Among them was the opportunity to play as someone other than Booker. While we have no confirmation of whether or not that will be the case, a LinkedIn posting spotted by CvgWorld suggests that we'll be meeting an alternate partner in crime, at the least.


Greetings from Columbia: BioShock Infinite concept art

Omri Petitte at

You know, if it wasn't teeming with magical racists, Columbia would be a seriously idyllic vacation spot. Irrational's masterful hand at worldbuilding is seen at every turn in BioShock Infinite, making us stop again and again to let our eyeballs drink in everything. Artist Ben Lo was part of the concept team piecing together Columbia's works, and he's shared a number of his postcard-like sketches of the floating city's beauty on his official website.


BioShock Infinite secrets guide: red tears, code books, and ciphers

T.J. Hafer at

BioShock Infinite has a fair bit of hidden content which can be missed on your first playthrough, so we put together a video on how to quickly access a few of the more interesting secrets, including the hugely valuable caches of goodies unlocked by solving the three Vox ciphers throughout Columbia. There are minor spoilers, so we recommend this guide for those of you going for completion, achievements, or a second playthrough just for the heck of it.


What we want from BioShock Infinite's DLC

PC Gamer at

Have you finished it yet? Once you’re through puzzling over the game’s conclusion, you may well be thinking about where the promised story DLC will take you next. We’ve put together a short list of tweaks and twists we’d like to see - but we’re sure you have more and better ideas. Let us know in the comments. Of course, spoilers lie within.


BioShock Infinite's ending explained, and what we think about it

PC Gamer at

Spoiler Alert!Don’t read this post or its comments unless you’ve finished BioShock Infinite. Experience it for yourself so you can come back and analyze it with us when you’re done. Don't even scroll down a little. There are screenshots.

Those of you still reading can appreciate why we say that—the ending needs to be experienced fresh, but not talking about it is excruciating, even when your friends are cupping their ears. We’ve been going back and forth about Infinite for a few days, and that conversation comes in two flavors: the technical exercise of untangling all the interdimensional spaghetti, and our critical response to it.

Violence is "a part of the storyteller's toolkit," says Ken Levine

Omri Petitte at

BioShock Infinite lead Ken Levine addressed the ongoing debate about violence in games in an NPR interview (via GameSpot) yesterday. During the talk, Levine defended games by stating that using violence as a narrative device is as old as storytelling itself.


Bioshock Infinite tweaks let you skip intro videos, increase FOV and adjust sensitivity

Phil Savage at

38 seconds! That's how long it takes for Bioshock Infinite to play its plethora of unskippable [Edit: At least, unskippable on its first launch] introductory splash videos and let you into the game. I know it's 38 seconds because I measured the level of bruising incurred by repeatedly hammering the escape key in a desperate, but ultimately futile, attempt to get to the bit where I shoot a man with some crows. Then I remembered my phone had a stopwatch. Now I feel a bit stupid and my finger hurts.

Luckily, you can avoid my mistakes thanks to the clever folks at PCGamingWiki, who offer up a selection of .ini file tweaks that can not only skip that long intro wait, but also increase the FOV range and mouse sensitivity options.


Why you should play BioShock Infinite on Hard difficulty

Evan Lahti at

Your virginal play-through of a story-driven game like BioShock Infinite is precious. And after finishing Infinite, I think Hard difficulty brings out its best aspects as an acrobatic, frantic shooter—especially if you play plenty of FPSes. Jump inside for a spoiler-free, quick video explanation of why I think you'll have more fun on Hard.


Unlock BioShock Infinite's 1999 mode with the Konami code

Omri Petitte at

Only hours remain until BioShock Infinite emerges from cloud cover on leathery steampunk wings, and we're eager for you to play one of the most artistically powerful games we've seen. Once you beat the campaign, you'll enable access to 1999 mode, a throwback to the challenges of old-school shooters with toughened enemies and a leaner health bar. But if you want, you can hop on the pain sky-train right from the start with a very familiar code.


Bioshock Infinite review

Tom Francis at

When I finished BioShock Infinite – don’t worry, I won’t spoil anything – I was dumbfounded. I wanted to tell someone what I thought, but for a moment I had absolutely no idea. I’d experienced a kind of excited panic, then total delight, then momentary confusion, and then a rush of extraordinary sights, powerful scenes and sudden twists that left me struggling to keep up.

It’s a spectacular ending. It’s just a shame it doesn’t make a lick of sense.


Notes on the PC version of Bioshock Infinite: graphics settings, loot glint and 1999 mode

Tom Francis at

Our Bioshock Infinite review is live. That covers everything from the story, the setting, what it's like to play and whether it's any good (spoiler alert: it is). But perhaps you have more questions about the PC version. Questions about graphics settings, field of view options, mouse acceleration, V-Sync and 1999 mode. Questions that might be answered by an assemblage of notes illustrated with screenshots of Bioshock Infinite's options menus. We've done exactly that.


Irrational's Ken Levine squashes BioShock Infinite budget rumors and talks about Oreos

Omri Petitte at

Just how much did Columbia cost? The studio is predictably keeping quiet on the shooter's overall budget, but a New York Times article mentions some analyst estimates put it around $200 million. Creative Director Ken Levine responds to the figure on Twitter with a denial and a healthy swig of a sarcasm power potion.


BioShock Infinite's animation director discusses Elizabeth's visual evolution

Omri Petitte at

The saga of BioShock Infinite's journey from the studio to our hard drives could fill a fair-sized codex, but one of the most visible transformations from the game's initial concepts took place with co-protagonist Elizabeth. Irrational has talked previously about her complicated scripting and her personal motivations that were shaped by Ken Levine's personal experiences—and even that she was nearly nearly cut from the game altogether—and now Eurogamer, after a chat with Irrational Animation Director Shawn Robertson, has revealed the rationale behind Elizabeth's stylized, "hyper-realistic" appearance in the finished game.


Ken Levine's fascinating, lengthy BAFTA Q&A is now available to watch online

Tom Sykes at

If you have an hour-and-a-bit of time spare today, you could do a lot worse than to spend it watching this recently uploaded BAFTA Q&A with Irrational Games' Ken Levine, in which he chats about System Shock 2, BioShock and BioShock Infinite - well, the clue was in the name of the presentation: 'From Shodan, to Big Daddy, to Elizabeth: The Evolution of AI Companions'. It's a fascinating talk, particularly if you're interested in the history of the series and the company, or game stories in general - and something of a tasty main course after the recent bombardment of BioShock Infinite trailers.


Bioshock Infinite trailer has Skyhook violence and juice that sets your hands on fire

Tom Senior at

Lessons Booker DeWitt learns in the latest Bioshock Infinite trailer.

1. Don't drink unlabeled bottles you find lying around.

2. Switch your skyhook off before scratching your nose.

3. Seriously, man, don't drink that it could be shampoo or bleach, or a tonic that sears the flesh from your hands - put it down, Booker. No! BAD action hero. What are you THREE YEARS OLD?


Irrational's Ken Levine personally "killed" BioShock film adaptation

Omri Petitte at

The BAFTA awards were given out earlier this month, and apart from being known as the ceremony where winners get a golden face, it's where a few PC games took a bow for their achievements. Irrational boss Ken Levine was on hand to promote the incoming release of BioShock Infinite, and as Eurogamer reports, he also discusses what happened to the BioShock film and its on-again, off-again director Gore Verbinski.


Ken Levine: BioShock Infinite team repeatedly wanted to cut Elizabeth

Omri Petitte at

The saga of BioShock Infinite's development is almost as nuanced as the history of the floating city of Columbia itself, and that facet certainly extends to the impending FPS' cast of characters. Booker DeWitt's constant companion is Elizabeth, a wide-eyed Columbian with her own story to tell and mysteries to unravel, but she almost never existed at all. Speaking to Polygon, Creative Director Ken Levine goes over the challenges Irrational faced when working with Elizabeth's increasingly complex character, revealing the team requested more than once to eliminate her entirely.


Irrational: ultra-photorealism in BioShock Infinite "isn't our goal"

Omri Petitte at

One of the best ways to flex the graphical muscle of our machines is seeing how close we can bring virtual visuals to the real thing. It's not the absolute definition of fidelity, though, and some games—the BioShock family, for instance—dip into a heavily stylized look for a more fantastical approach to beauty. Speaking to CVG in an interview, Irrational Design Director Bill Gardner states clinging to realism isn't one of the studio's aims and shares his thoughts on the "misconception" of gamers solely desiring photo-like graphics.


BioShock Infinite artist almost resigned over game's depiction of religion

Omri Petitte at

Two of the many -isms supercharging BioShock Infinite's narrative is the religious extremism and racism of Zachary Comstock, the zealous ultra-nationalist founder of Columbia and a figure of worship for many of its citizens. In an interview with GameSpot, Creative Director Ken Levine stresses the difficulty in creating Comstock as a designer from a non-religious background, and he recalls how a certain end-game scene with the character nearly caused an Irrational artist to quit in protest.


BioShock Infinite's "Pre-Purchase Rewards" revealed - but there's a catch

Tom Sykes at

Worried that the download copies of BioShock Infinite will sell out, when it lands on the 26th of March? You might want to sit and think about that for a moment, or alternatively you could pre-order the game from Steam - you know, before you know whether it's any good or not. Your wallet may or may not thank you in the long run, but at least you'll get a bunch of free stuff, including the spin-off Industrial Revolution puzzle game, some in-game tat, and a copy of the original BioShock. If an unspecified number of other people put their money down as well, you'll also get a copy of XCOM and several TF2 items, but I don't see how anyone would be interested in those.