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Remembering Bioshock’s rapturous opening

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I remember when I first played through Irrational Games’ Bioshock. It was towards the end of 2007, and I’d pre-ordered a steel-book edition of the game, based purely on a video I’d seen, and the fact that it was made by a bunch of the people behind my beloved System Shock 2, even sharing some of the locution.

And I was mesmerised, from beginning to end. In particular, it was the game’s opening moments that drew me in; the introduction to the dystopian undersea world of Rapture; the very best in fluid physics from nearly ten years ago; the first encounter with a splicer. The first time you see a Big Daddy and the first time you change your DNA with a plasmid.

Yes, introspection and retrospection now have me thinking that game wasn’t nearly as good as System Shock, but at the time, it blew my mind. There’s something very to the game. Admittedly, its gunplay isn’t great, though that never mattered much to me. I always favoured setting traps and being devious over just shooting at stuff, which is probably why I didn’t quite enjoy Infinite as much as most seemed to have.

Anyway, what’s the point of this rambling? Well, my reminiscence was brought about by an IGN video where former Irrational staffer Bill Gardner takes a seat with IGN’s Ryan McCaffrey to play through BioShock’s first level, “Welcome to Rapture.” They talk about the game’s design, and discuss how Irrational managed to nail that atmosphere.

Now, would you Kindly watch the video?

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Last Updated: January 12, 2016

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  1. Alien Emperor Trevor

    January 12, 2016 at 14:33

    “Yes, introspection and retrospection now have me thinking that the game wasn’t nearly as good as System Sock, but at the time, it blew my mind.” – did it not blow your socks off?


  2. Original Heretic

    January 12, 2016 at 14:33

    Ah yeah, I remember that feeling as well, when I first played Bioshock. Andrew Ryan’s monologue as you descend in the bathosphere sent chills down my spine.


  3. oVg

    January 12, 2016 at 15:34

    Nothing beats 2007 in the JUMP from one gen to the other. After 5 years of PS2 games I bought a 360 because of the Gears of War advert that I watched on TV. I thought it was all CGI but anyway I went ahead and bought the R1999 XBOX with a 500mb memory card, Bioshock and Gears.

    I placed Bioshock in first. MY MIND WAS BLOWN. The water looked better than CGI, that plane crash, DAM!!!

    So, 2007 KICKED SONYS BUTT. I had Gears, Mass Effect and Bioshock, SUCK IT SONY, I then played Lost Odyssey. THE XBOX OWNED.

    But now the roles have reversed. But that wow factor of jumping from polygon jaggie wheels in GT3 to round wheels in FORZA 2 BLEW MY MIND.

    As for the jump from the 7th gen to the 8th gen? It was all about frame rate and resolution. Nothing as fantastic as 2007.


    • Alien Emperor Trevor

      January 12, 2016 at 16:06

      Hate to break it to you, but we had round wheels before 2007. *run*


      • oVg

        January 12, 2016 at 16:08

        You mean



    • konfab

      January 12, 2016 at 17:12

      GT4 blew my mind.

      Then Mr PS3 came along and introduced Motorstorm, where your cars would break into 1000000000 pieces when you crash.


  4. oVg

    January 12, 2016 at 15:39

    Never mind the screen tearing, that 60fps back in 2007 was SWEEEEEEEEEET


  5. oVg

    January 12, 2016 at 15:40

    The little sisters scared the crap out of me. It was the first time that I had killed a child in a game. Freaky.


    • Alien Emperor Trevor

      January 12, 2016 at 16:07

      I couldn’t kill them. Haven’t killed a single one in any of the Bioshocks. I even get sad when hearing one cry for Mr Bubbles.


  6. eXpZA

    January 12, 2016 at 16:05

    I can’t wait to watch this on the Bog.


  7. konfab

    January 12, 2016 at 17:08

    You are being irrational over this, nothing has blown me away more than the intro section of Infinite with a backdrop of “God only knows” sung in a barbershop quartet.

    I fear nothing in gaming will ever be as perfect as that.


    • Geoffrey Tim

      January 13, 2016 at 08:34

      The first two hours of Infinite were close to perfect; then it just became another damned shooter. I saw the SURPRISE TWIST ending coming from a mile off, so tat had zero impact on me either. When I first played the intro section in preview, I thought the game would be one of the best things *ever*.


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