The toughest question to answer is “How do you write for a BioShock game?” Wait, let me back up.
I started at Irrational almost a year ago. At that point, there wasn’t a “writing team”, it was just Ken Levine. Luckily, Ken is a smart guy and knew that this upcoming game was going to be big. Bigger than any game he’d worked on before. So I tricked him into hiring me, and a couple months later we realized it was still a really big game, so Joe Fielder tricked us into hiring him as well. And the three of us, along with Jordan Thomas, tried to wrangle the beast that is BioShock Infinite.
The writing team at Irrational is structured a lot like a television writing staff. (At least I assume. I’ve never worked in TV, so maybe they don’t have a special room for footrubs and/or quiet sobbing.)
In a clever touch, BioShock Infinite subtly parallels the first moments of the original BioShock. In both games you find yourself adrift, slowly making your way towards a lighthouse that juts proudly from the angry sea. The key difference this time is that you don’t plunge into the frigid depths of the Atlantic, but soar far into the heavens above in search of Columbia, a rogue city-state that seceded from the U.S. in an alternate-history version of 1912.
In both games, things are not as they first seem. BioShock’s undersea city of Rapture ran on ambiguous agendas cloaked in philosophy and punditry, but the world was clearly in its death throes from the moment you entered its haunted hallways. Columbia’s sickness is also terminal but lies deeper, eluding immediate detection. In fact, your first 30 minutes in Columbia are almost idyllic. The glow of candles lights your way into the city and angelic choirs drone pleasantly in the background. It pays to move slowly in order to better soak in the game’s dazzling eye for detail, whether it’s the colorful citizens crowding a carnival, hummingbirds buzzing busily from rosebush to rosebush, or children splashing in the spray of an opened fire hydrant. Columbia is alive.
It’s been some time since we’ve caught a new glimpse of Irrational Games’ long-awaited follow up to BioShock, but it’s clear Ken Levine and company haven’t let time go to waste. This flashy new BioShock Infinite trailer sheds a bit more light on the backstory for protagonist Booker DeWitt, a former Pinkerton detective working to track down a missing woman on the floating city of Columbia. You’ll catch a glimpse of some new Tonic powers (including one that bears a passing resemblance to BioShock’s Electro Bolt Plasmid) and some intense new action sequences, interspersed with the polish and panache Irrational is known for.
So, you wanna buy a nice collector’s edition? I can get it for you retail.
Thanks, I’m here all week. The veal is on special.
Imagine you get to work with Robb Waters, the concept artist who visualized the cover of System Shock. The Trickster in Thief. Man-Bot in Freedom Force. BioShock’s Little Sisters. Sander Cohen. And BioShock Infinite’s Songbird.
Now imagine you can get him to personally conceive and oversee the production of the coolest statue in the world.
Then imagine we put that huge sucker in a period-style box, with custom artwork by Robb and Irrational concept artist Jorge Lacera. And that box went in the collector’s edition box, so you could leave that guy unpunched in his original packaging while you tear happily into the rest of the goodies.
Ubisoft raised more than a few eyebrows when it revealed its bold plans for Assassin’s Creed III earlier this month. In a sharp break from the Renaissance theme that has dominated the last three games, ACIII will shift its focus to the desperate, bloody days of the American Revolution in a story that spans 30 years. The change is scenery is matched by a change in character, with protagonist Connor Kenway taking center stage as an assassin caught between the escalating atrocities of the Patriots and the Redcoats. It’s a juicy premise positively bursting with potential.
With Assassin’s Creed III set to land on PS3 this October 30th, we sat down with Creative Director Alex Hutchinson to discuss the game’s ambitious premise and many, many gameplay enhancements. Read on for the choice highlights, or tune in to the entire 15-minute interview on episode 018 of PlayStation Blogcast. As always, let us know what you think in the comments!
Now that you’ve met the Motorized Patriot, Handyman, and the Boys of Silence, it’s now time to reveal the fourth and final installment of our Heavy Hitter series – and we’re taking the creepy factor up a notch. Imagine taking down a bunch of bad guys, only to realize that you’ve just created fuel for something far more terrifying. Backed into a corner, who gets the next bullet? You’ll be facing this decision in Columbia if you’re unfortunate enough to get discovered by the Siren. Check out the clip below as Ken Levine, Nate Wells, and Shawn Robertson gives you a sneak peek…
So what do you think? Are you ready to face the Heavy Hitters? Either way, you’ll find out when BioShock Infinite launches October 16th, 2012
If you’ve been watching IrrationalGames.com, you may have seen a series of videos debuting the uniqueBioShock Infinite antagonists you’ll face in the city of Columbia — we’ve dubbed them Heavy Hitters. We wanted to make sure PlayStation.Blog readers were looped in on the fun as well, so today we’re stopping by to debut the third installment of Heavy Hitters. It’s time to cover your ears: Here come the Boys of Silence!
But the third installment of Heavy Hitters may surprise you. Instead of using brute force and heavy artillery, these guys only use sound — it’s all they’ll need to get your adrenaline flowing as you check your ammo and run for cover. When encountering the Boys of Silence, Booker and Elizabeth can choose to sneak past these sentries or engage them directly to silence them forever. Just don’t give them a chance to summon reinforcements…