Review by farbod21

"Almost Perfect. Still Absolutely Amazing!"

Story - 10/10
As far as FPS go, this is by far the best story I have ever come across. Taken from Orwell and Ayn Rand (Andrew Ryan, get it?) the idealistic utopia setting underwater is an amazing backdrop for a story that will fly over the head of most people who play Bioshock. For the ones that pay attention, read the diaries, and have read a book or two the story will be amazingly philosophical. Science without morality? Self interest dominating action? These are just the questions tackled in this deep and twisted game.

Visuals - 10/10
While the games overall graphics were not above and beyond other next gen games, the art decoration and sheer imagination of the game are a breath of fresh air from the normally empty jungles and forts seen in every other FPS. The 1950's style art deco and the detail of every room and scene were beautifully done allowing the player to really feel the magnitude and aura of Rapture. From the beginning to the very end you are lead through a maze of terror and wonder unmatched by any game in this genre.

Sound - 9/10
The screams can barely be heard above the music being played on a distant jukebox. As far as sound affects and ambiance the game is flawless. The player really feels like he is in Rapture and can hear the horrific agony of a dying "utopia." The voice acting is top notch as all the main characters do an amazing job of portraying a real and twisted character from a disturbed world. The conflict between Ryan and Atlas can be measured by the voice acting alone. The only flaw in this area of Bioshock is by the limited soundtrack that only has about 3 tracks.

Gameplay - 9/10
Every FPS has weapons you tend not to use or items which are overlooked and even aspects of the game that are gleamed through. Bioshock keeps these to a minimum. With an assortment of weapons and tactics in your arsenal, a player has numerous way of dispatching enemies and villains alike. Light one on fire and electrocute him as he puts himself out in the nearest puddle of water... Or freeze an enemy and shoot him in the head with your crossbow. You can even take pictures to familiarize yourself with an enemy. The hack mini-game is intriguing at first but gets tedious and annoying as the game wears on. The controls and fluidity of the game are perfect and the overall feel of the game is so flawless that you can play for hours without getting annoyed or anxious. The vita-chamber system and the instant save feature takes some of the challenge away, but these things can be used sparingly by the player if they want to up the challenge while allowing weaker players to advance in the game accordingly without feeling helpless and abandoning the game altogether.

Replay Value - 7/10
While you can get every achievement on one play through and see both endings by replaying the last level from a save the games beauty and fun factor will be hard to resist for players that have beaten the game. A new game+ feature allowing you to replay the game with all your weapons and items would have been a welcome addition. Also the fact that there is no two player mode or online play might leave this game on the shelves once the final battle has been won.

Overall - 9/10
While this game does have a few minor flaws including the pacing of ammo and supplies (end heavy) and the challenge eliminating vita chamber system, the beauty and depth of Rapture along with the physics and gameplay of well used unreal 3.0 engine create one of the more memorable FPS to have ever come out.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 08/24/07

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