My Impressions and Speculations (SPOILERS)
So I just finished Bioshock 2 two nights ago, and managed to proceed to Silver ranking in multi-player last night. So I figured I would let 2K and my fellow Bioshock fans know what I think about the game thus far.
+ At first, I wasn't too impressed with this aspect of the game. The drill seemed a bit underpowered, and the rivet gun seemed just a little boring, but as soon as I picked up the machine gun out of the broken glass display window in the security office in Ryan Amusements, I couldn't help but giggle a little bit. I love how Delta get's an all new array of weapons than Jack did in the first game, and the Power To The People upgrades seemed much better to me. And dual wielding plasmids and guns was probably the best thing they did with the game. In the first game, I mainly just stuck with my guns, because I didn't like switching to and fro. But in this game I feel as if I was awarded a much better rounded system. And the hacking definitely kept gameplay feeling fresh and intuitive, though I must admit I miss the old hacking system a little bit. I wish they would have left the old system for at least some hackable devices, such as safes where no one is usually on your back anyway.
I was VERY surprised at how much harder this game was to me than the first game. I figured it would be a cakewalk playing as a Big Daddy, but I often felt myself screaming for my life and regretting disabling those Vita-Chambers. Luckily, I never needed them. Though I came close. Especially while protecting the Little Sister while she gathered. I found myself dreading those moments, but going through the motions nonetheless, because I desperately needed the ADAM. Don't get me wrong, it was fun as hell. Just intimidating.
The Big Sister was amazing! I dreaded her approach every time and actually felt terrified when I heard her screaming after me. Great addition to the game-play and story
And the new plasmids were great as well. I especially loved the way they evolved. I found myself enjoying using them and relying on them, unlike the first game. Too bad the teleport plasmid wasn't usable.
So I think the game-play DEFINITELY improved from the first game. I can't think of anything I would really recommend changing, but improvement is always welcome and expected.
+ While I enjoyed the story in this game quite a bit, it didn't meet my expectations. And this is coming from someone who wanted a sequel, and supported the concept of the story from the first glimpse. The concept was great, I just don't think it was executed quite as well as the first one. In the first game, I was hungry for answers. I wanted to know everything. Where did this city come from? Why was it built? What happened? Who are these people? WHO IN THE HELL AM I?!?! And all of those questions were pretty much answered. I completed the game satisfied, though desperately wanting more. And that's where Bioshock 2 came in, and fell just a wee bit short. I didn't find out nearly as much about Delta as I wanted too. There just wasn't enough depth. I was expecting a creature just as lost and clamoring for answers as Frankenstein. There just wasn't enough. Yes, he was a man who found Rapture and was forced into the project, which was cool. But that's about the only revelatory thing we learn about him. It's not nearly as jaw-dropping as the story behind Jack. And ultimately, I think Delta's story just had so much more potential than Jack's did. I also didn't feel the bond with Eleanor I was expecting to feel. I felt like Delta wanted to be reunited with her, more than she wanted to be reunited with him. I felt more like a tool. I was very pleased with the increased amount of character interaction in this game, but at the same time, the characters just weren't as interesting. And though Sofia Lamb's extremist philosophy in Altruism was the perfect path to take in this game in counteraction to Andrew Ryan's 'every man for himself' attitude, I felt like it was totally over-saturated. I just got sick of it. Mark Meltzer was probably my favorite little twist in the game. I found myself more interested in what was happening with him, than what was happening with me at times. When I found his dead body in the form of a Big Daddy on the ground, my jaw dropped and I actually felt my heart stop. Too bad there wasn't more to that story.
The part where you play as the Little Sister was also totally unexpected, and I loved it! Truly terrifying and enchanting.
I also loved the nods to the first game. I almost crapped myself when I heard Fontaine's audio diaries.
Anyway, the concept of this game was great, I just don't think it was executed as well as the first. And despite what many people may say, the storyline had the potential to be just as good. While the increased character interaction was great, the characters just weren't as interesting. And the ending drew out for too long. Also disappointed that the final showdown was just more splicers.
+ I love multi-player! It could use improvements, but I really hope it is included in the next game as well! The most disappointing thing to me about multi-player is the lack of customization. I would rather have my own totally custom made splicer, than to play as a character everyone else can use.
+ I feel Rapture cannot be kept secret from the surface for much longer. I'm expecting the next game to be based around destroying Rapture once and for all and keeping it and it's secrets safe, so history doesn't repeat itself on the surface. I don't want to see it taken under control by another philosophically mad extremist. I think that concept has been played out by now. Someone will probably finish where Sinclair left off, and try to cash in on the advancements discovered in Rapture. Who knows?
Though I may seem a little critical at points, I really did enjoy the game very much, and I think it was an accomplishment.