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Review: Bioshock 2 - PC

by Steven Williamson on 25 March 2010, 09:17 4.45

Tags: Bioshock 2, Take-Two Interactive (NASDAQ:TTWO), PC, Xbox 360, Action/Adventure

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qawr2

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Big Daddy is back, without the spandex

Reviewer - John Layland

As the sequel to BioShock, arguably the best single player first person shooter experience since Gordon Freeman hung up his HEV suit at the end of Half Life 2 and called it a day, Bioshock 2 has an awfully big pair of shoes to fill. Set ten years after the original it takes you back into the depths of Rapture. One mans vision of an underwater utopia that began slipping into chaos and disarray after the scientists there discovered a substance know as ADAM. ADAM allows its users to alter their genetic makeup giving them new, almost superhuman powers via the use of Plasmids but leaves them with a crippling addiction and has a tendency to drive even the greatest of minds to the brink of insanity and beyond.

For those among you that never played the first game, picture the most deranged drug addict you can now dress them in a zoot suit and give them the ability to fire swarms of flesh eating wasps from their fingertips. They're called Splicers and it's no wonder it all went downhill rather quickly with a few thousand of them living together. You return as a plasmid wielding prototype Big Daddy mysteriously woken your Little Sister Eleanor to rescue her from the clutches of Sophia Lamb who has assumed control over Rapture since its founder Andrew Ryan's demise at the end of the first game, brainwashed it's ghoulish inhabitants into joining a pseudo communist cult know as "The Family" and will do whatever it takes to ensure the two of you remain apart. Just another day in utopia then...

Right from the beginning of the single player campaign Bioshock 2 looks and feels very familiar if you've played the first game, even the early mission structure is pretty much a carbon copy with the odd tweak here and there and despite taking on the role of a Big Daddy very little has changed about the way you interact with the world around you. You can now properly dual wield Plasmids and more conventional weaponry at the same time which is a welcome addition and a technique you'll have to perfect in order to progress through the games later levels and your suit does allow for occasional excursions into the ocean outside Raptures crumbling architecture but you never feel like the hulking behemoth you'd expect and most of the time you could be forgiven for forgetting you're anything but another gun toting everyman character similar to the first games hero.

Continued overleaf...