Is BioShock DX10 all that it’s cracked up to be?
When it was released in 1994, System Shock sent waves throughout the industry. System Shock was a graphical tour de force. The game was the first first-person shooter (FPS) to feature true 3D environments and with proper audio hardware, the game even offered speech playback. In terms of gameplay, System Shock was more than just an FPS, it was actually more of a hybrid FPS/adventure game with role-playing elements mixed in as well. System Shock wasn’t just another run-and-gun find the key to unlock the next room FPS, it actually featured an engaging storyline.
System Shock earned widespread awards and accolades from press and end user’s alike, including a spot as one of Computer Gaming World’s Best Games of All Time, but the game featured very steep system requirements to get good frame rates: the game was a buggy, unstable mess if your PC wasn’t up to snuff. This fact, along with the popularity of other shooters at the time such as Doom II ultimately hurt the game’s sales. A sequel was developed by Irrational Games a few years later that also earned positive reviews but despite this the game wasn’t a real sales success. Over time the game faded, and while there are rumors EA may be working on a sequel, the franchise has slowly been forgotten.
Up to now that is.
With BioShock, fans of the System Shock series have something to look forward to, as the game has been described as the spiritual successor to System Shock, with Irrational Games back as the lead developer. BioShock takes place in an underwater city named Rapture in 1960. In the words of Andrew Ryan, the city’s creator, Rapture is a city “where artists would not be incensed, where scientists would not be bound by morality, where the great would not be constrained by the small”. Somewhere along the way however, his vision of a perfect society of mankind’s greatest minds went terribly wrong. Your character arrives in an underwater city filled with chaos, trash and filth are everywhere and genetically modified humans called splicers kill anything in their path. It’s your task to sort through all this mess, and depending on your actions throughout the game the result can be positive or negative for the citizens (if you can call them that) of Rapture.
In addition to the standard weapons you’d find in your typical FPS, your character can also wield special powers known as plasmids. Plasmids range from electricity, which can be used to electrocute your enemy, and speed boost, to the enrage plasmid, which can be used to have them fight each other. In addition to plasmids, your character can also use tonics which allow you to do things such as camouflage to hide from splicers.
You can interact with practically everything in the environment, from taking money out of cash registers (that money can be used to buy ammo, health packs, etc), to eating candy bars to increase your health. Overall the game is very well done with an engaging plot with several twists and turns along the way, and already the game has earned widespread universal praise from the gaming press, including our own Editors Choice Award in our BioShock review
published earlier this week. But how does the game play with today’s latest hardware? That’s what we’re here today to find out!