28 March 2011 | dfle3
Unnecessary sequel but still as addictive as the original. 82.5/100
First person shooter.
Retro future Utopia...i.e. the game is set in the 1960s, but it's an alternative world scenario...a place where humanity has advanced significantly in their development...more advanced than our current society. The sequel explores new parts of the city of Rapture.
If you liked finally playing as a Big Daddy in the original, you should get a kick out of playing as a Big Daddy for the entire length of the sequel...except for one part where you play a...
The story concerns your Big Daddy becoming separated from your Little Sister. This separation is harmful to both parties health, so you must locate your charge. Of course, powerful forces are working against this outcome and your life is in danger.
As far as character representation goes, this is a step up from the original...they're more realistic, less stylised than the cartoonish looking splicers of the original. It's actually a pity that this level of character representation wasn't in the original...then maybe we could have expected an Uncharted 2 like step up in visual quality for the sequel.
Probably less obvious repetition in character utterances than the original. Some noises seem to be constant...like there is a faulty elevator or some other mechanical/electrical device. Not a huge issue but sometimes I wished that that noise would just go away.
Good about the game:
The weapons/plasmids/tonics have been tweaked. The plasmids especially are fun. On acquiring a certain plasmid I'd think to myself "Wouldn't it be cool if you could..." and then I'd try doing just that. And it would work! It's good how the makers have thought out the logical consequences of some plasmids, so you actually can do what you think that plasmid should allow you to do. Best example of that is the "Scout" plasmid. Personally, I missed the crossbow of the original (for it's precision shooting) but the speargun did become my default weapon (for being able to regather fired ammo).
If you enjoyed the "upgrade" paths of the original, the sequel has the exact same quality, but is a bit more polished in execution.
Misjudgements in the game:
I'll start by way of introduction saying that since you play the top of the food chain in the original game, the sequel knocks you down a peg. This was a bit naff for mind, but it brings up the first misjudgement...where strategy is crucial in taking down these ultimate warriors, it's disappointing that the first time you fight one of them you are not in control of the circumstances in which you engage them. They're tough to beat, so to not have the ability to fight them on your terms sucks. There was a similar problem in the original, and like the original, this misjudgement goes away in subsequent battles.
As with the original, the splicers are a constant annoyance...more so than in the original. Another naff splicer is introduced too. At least in the original you could find ample opportunities to use plasmids like the Cyclone Trap...set pieces in the game. In the sequel you probably don't even have to use them. Related to this, with the research you do on splicers, it turns out you won't be able to fully research them anywhere in Rapture...some of them are limited to certain parts of the city...which is annoying...some classes of splicers I didn't get to fully research as a result and for some of those I could have really used my Cyclone Trap plasmids to good effect in set pieces...which never arrived (e.g. in defending yourself from attack after performing an action).
My third misjudgement is the lack of a final boss battle as in the original. The Frank Fontaine fight there was too hard, but in the sequel there's a feeling of anti-climax as the final fights aren't really different in kind to the normal hurly-burly of defending your Little Sister when she is gathering ADAM. And if you have certain tonics and plasmids, your task is made easier and you can simply discover how to do things better next time if you die.
How the game basically rewrites the history of Bioshock. I really didn't see any scope for a sequel to that game and the scenario seems manufactured out of nothing. However, the ending does have a pay off, even though I didn't buy into the story's new characters.
It would have been nice to have your moral choices highlighted more explicitly. And in the case of Gil Alexander, the game makers seem to have had a different take than me on the moral thing to do with him...relating to in game trophies.
Some characters from the original story make cameo appearances but are soon forgotten. That was a pity. And even some new characters of interest eventually disappear, never to be heard of again.
I was prepared to give this game the same score I gave for the original (85/100), but have knocked it down a smidge due to the anti-climax of the ending. Even though I wasn't sold on the premise of the sequel and found some new character classes naff, the game held the same addictiveness as the original.
Personally I'd recommend the original over the sequel for my view of the 'real' story of Rapture. But if you don't feel like returning to the original but want something similar, play the sequel...it has polished some of the exciting weapons of the original. But the lack of use for certain weapons in game and the inability to gain research points on certain character classes anywhere in Rapture is a disappointment.