Before there was Bioshock, Bioshock 2, and Bioshock Infinite there was System Shock. Released 20 years ago, the original Shock had a huge influence on the games industry and the Bioshock games in particular, of course. If you're curious about System Shock, this video of the developers playing and talking about it is a must watch.
System Shock 2 comes from a golden age of PC gaming: after true 3D engines had arrived, but before the all-action shooter had shown the world the commercially safe thing to do with them. No one really knew what they were doing, so games were risky and experimental, but they also looked good. Not realistic, but believable. Once the games industry started making everything out of polygons, it started making games that would last forever.
Shock 2 is a sci-fi survival first-person action RPG, which is just a list of my favourite words. We can’t claim they don’t make them like that anymore, because they’ve made two like that in the last three years and they’re working on a third (BioShocks 1, 2 and Infinite). But they don’t make them quite like this anymore.
Every month, Irrational hand us a free news post by putting up some interesting tidbit from the inception of one of their various classic titles. This month, it's System Shock 2's concept art. System Shock 2 was Bioshock's cool uncle who got him into most of the music he likes. Well. Maybe it was a bit more than that. Check it out here.
Looking Glass were amazing. They were the creative minds behind Thief, Flight Unlimited, Ultima Underworld and System Shock, and pioneers of the first-person simulation style game that led to Deus Ex and Bioshock. Then they died, and we were sad. Now you can take voyeuristic look at their final hours - as uploaded to YouTube. Warning: videos contain extreme haircuts, and scenes of distressing t-shirts.