Bioshock 2 was definitely a risky move for the developers to make after the brilliant success of its predecessor, since it’s often all too easy to ruin something great by creating a sequel. Obviously, we felt this wasn’t the case with Bioshock 2, because we bloody loved it.
The follow-up to 2008’s masterpiece had me worried before it was released. I thought it showed many signs of being a cash-in sequel – it was developed by a team who had nothing to do with the first, it had a pretty short development cycle and it had the modern tradition of a tacked-on multiplayer component which I really didn’t think it needed. I still haven’t actually tried the multiplayer so cannot comment on that, but the single player game more than surpassed my expectations.
It was a brilliant sequel, improving on every aspect of the gameplay, with refined combat abilities, and new plasmid powers which all felt like natural additions. It was a joy to explore the underwater city of Rapture again, and even though it never produced that same level of awe which came with its predecessor, it was still one of the best-written games of the past few years. Bioshock 2 has a superb script, solid voice actors and a story filled with the kind of philosophical questions rarely seen in video games. Rounded off by a poignant and satisfying conclusion which trumps the originals’, Bioshock 2 proved to be one of the best sequels of 2010.
The first Bioshock made an excellent impression on me, and what amazed me most about it was the huge twist at the end that I never saw coming. This doesn’t happen too often with most storyline plots, since not a lot ever seem to engineer their twists in such an impressive way that you don’t even hazard a guess. On top of the outstanding and original story and setting, the gameplay was fantastic and the element of fear was brilliant. I often found myself struggling to press forward in certain areas of the game, when I could hear people screaming and monstrous enemies prowling the avenues of Rapture for fresh prey. Bioshock went down as one of my favourite and most memorable FPS games ever.
Bioshock 2, to me, was an almost equally brilliant game, with the very cool added concept of playing as one of the original Big Daddies of Rapture, rather than a plain human male. The graphics were a huge improvement, and the addition of numerous new plasmid powers and a whole bunch of new, heavier weapons to get your hands on, it played and looked like a beautiful continuation of the original. True, the main storyline wasn’t quite as surprising or intriguing, which is a slight shame really, but the world of Rapture and the characters and background stories within it have always been so well crafted that I found myself wanting to see and experience everything about it.
With great controls, a fluid feel to the game, and a captivating story progression, Bioshock 2 definitely earned its position in our top ten games of 2010.