There are quite a lot of very successful first person shooters out there such as Half-life, Crysis, Battlefield 3, and so on. Last March 26, 2013, Irrational Games and 2K Games launched BioShock Infinite for the Sony Playstation 3, XBOX 360 and the PC. Will it be just another run-of-the-mill first person shooter? Or will it give players something to look forward to? Let’s get into the world of BioShock Infinite for the PC. I will be very careful about spoilers.
Let’s start with the system requirements for the PC. The minimum requirements for the game are: for the processor, an Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz processor or an AMD Athlon X2 at 2.7GHz; 2 Gigabytes of RAM; Windows Vista 32-bit; 20 GB of hard drive space; and an AMD Radeon 3870, NVIDIA GeForce 8800GT or Intel HD 3000 graphics card with 512 MB of graphics memory.
The recommended specs are the following: A quad-core processor; 4 Gigabytes of RAM; Windows 7 64-bit; a whopping 30GB of hard drive space; and at least an AMD Radeon 6950 or an NVIDIA GTX 560 video card with 1 GB of graphics memory. My system is just a notch below the recommended specification.
One of the reasons for the fairly high requirements is the lush 3D environments. I am awed by the vivid colors and effects. The detail on the environment is quite impressive such as the people, the parks, the trees, the buildings and the special effects. It will push your PC to its limit if you choose the highest graphics detail. But then, even at low details, everything still looks good.
Now, let’s move on to one of the most important parts of a video game, its story line. I will just give very broad information so as not to spoil the story. BioShock Infinite has a very complex and deep storyline. It is also independent from the previous BioShock games. You play as Booker DeWitt, an agent who is tasked to find a girl named Elizabeth in Columbia. You then enter a world where religion meets politics. The plot twists are quite exciting especially when you and Elizabeth open and go through those dimensional tears. The ending is one that you probably won’t forget for a while.
When it comes to controls, for me at least, nothing beats the PC when playing first person shooters. You’ll just have to get used to the right mouse button which is configured for vigors. I have played numerous first person shooters and I am used to using the right mouse button for zoom or scope. Sometimes, you may accidentally use a vigor and use up salts. You could just either reconfigure it or get used to it.
The gameplay is quite superb. The difficulty of the game is quite impressive. Even at the easiest level, it will still be very challenging but it’s not that difficult. You’ll die a couple of times, that’s for sure. The good thing is that it does have an autosave feature that allows you to start from the nearest save point when you come back. This is really a good feature for first person shooters. Saving your game from time to time by going to the menus disrupts gameplay.
The game gives you a well-balanced mix of action and story. The story is seamlessly incorporated to the action so you won’t get bored easily. It’s not just the usual gun-slinging first person shooting game. You have quite a lot of things to do like use your vigor. Vigors are special abilities, what I sometimes refer to as magic, that will allow you to electrocute your enemy, burn them, push them around, possess machines, and so on.
You can do melee attacks as well. If you’re about to deliver the final blow, Booker will perform a fatal melee attack. It is always good to have a choice on how to attack your enemies. But near the end, it may not be as useful since enemies are much tougher and take longer to kill.
You’ll also be gliding on the sky line from time to time. It’s quite exiting and you have the ability to jump to another sky line, land on the ground or do a landing attack on an enemy.
One thing that I really like about BioShock Infinite’s gameplay is Elizabeth. Most of the time, you’ll be with Elizabeth even when in combat. Don’t worry. She can take care of herself. You can ask her to open dimensional tears which give you ammo, a cover, automatic gun turrets and even hooks to sling shot to. Using these dimensional tears can help you a lot especially when you’re being overrun by enemies.
That’s not all. Elizabeth will throw ammo, health and salt at you if you need them. Just don’t depend too much on Elizabeth. There will be times when she won’t be able to throw you anything. But most of the time, she will.
Games aren’t perfect, and so is BioShock Infinite. The game doesn’t have a multiplayer option at this time. I’m sure you’re thinking of using vigors and tears on other players in a multiplayer game. But for now, it’s not possible.
The game is quite short though and tends to lack replay value. You can try another difficulty setting if you’d like. Another thing to point out is mouse sensitivity. You have to put the slider all the way to the left, or near the left depending on your mouse, or else you’ll get dizzy with the sudden and quick screen movements which results from even a slight tap of the mouse. It’s hard to move around, focus on a target when firing your weapons or using vigors.
Overall, it was really a fun game to play. With its excellent gameplay, deep storyline and great looking environments and effects, it will most likely be worth your time and money.
Wikipedia: BioShock Infinite
PC Gamer: BioShock Infinite System Requirements