Here's a rather splendid new trailer for Bioshock Infinite; one that packs together grand vistas of the soaring city of Columbia, insight into its fire-and-brimstone ruler Zachary Comstock, and plenty of explosive combat against men and monstrosities. It's also likely to be the only trailer you'll see today that features a minigun-toting mechanical George Washington.
He only makes a brief appearance, but Comstock seems set to be a great character. His zealous, patriotic fervour seems like a nice counterpoint to the grand idealism of Bioshock's Andrew Ryan.
Also: a game trailer made entirely from footage of said game! What a novel idea. We approve.
If you went to school in the 1980s, well, you'll probably find this to be one of the best video game trailers you'll ever see.
Jan 27, 2013
This week has seen the release of several pre-rendered cinematic trailers. Exciting though they were, brows were raised, then furrowed, then frowned in the PCG office as we noted how precious little these dramatic scenes reflected the actual action of the game.
It need not be so. Even fully pre-rendered trailers can do a better job of encapsulating the games they promote - and probably do a better job of selling them too. We cast our minds back to our favourite trailers of yore, and picked out the five that we felt best captured the games within, while offering visuals that are every bit as thrilling, powerful and cool.
Save for a snippet of pre-rendered CGI at the beginning, this is pretty much just an expertly-edited grab from the game itself. Not only does this, succinctly explain the action and features of the game, but it creates an epic four-minute trajectory of awesome escalation. Then the camera pans back from what seemed surely to be its climax, to reveal yet another immense level of robotic carnage. Even now, six years after Supreme Commander’s release, the trailer still makes it look like the ultimate future of the RTS.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution
A cinematic trailer done right, Human Revolution’s pre-rendered preamble introduces us to the world with expert scene-setting. It quickly sketches out the themes and setting, establishing Jensen as an embittered cyborg with super powerful robo-arms, a vengeful purpose and uncertain allegiance. And then its action sequences, while slightly more fluid and dramatic than possible in game, do describe powers at the player’s disposal: invisibility, x-ray vision, and retractable elbow chisels. It may have flash camera angles, bespoke mo-cap, and sumptuous subsurface scattering - but it’s an honest evocation of the glories of the game itself.
Team Fortress 2
The jaunty crime-caper music and freeze-frame introductions make it clear: TF2 doesn’t have classes so much as characters. The game’s team-shooter action takes a backseat here to showcasing the vibrant art-style and humour, as well as articulating the distinct roles and capabilities of each of TF2’s nine classes. A multiplayer shooter might normally offer scant cinematic thrills, or struggle to communicate what it’s about without a dry breakdown of its mechanics - TF2 elegantly dances round these problems without being disingenuous about the game’s contents.
There’s no in-game footage here, but BioShock’s trailer nonetheless captures a tremendous amount of the game within its short three-minute running time. Its opening panning shot establishes Rapture - its majesty, its dereliction and the ideals that created it. Then the trailer quickly and unexpectedly segues into a thrilling action scene, witnessed in firstperson. The ferocious combat seen here is more dynamic than that of the game, certainly, but the battle establishes the core relationship of the game: that between the little sisters and the big daddies. And, by putting you in the head of an child-stealing aggressor, also demonstrates the game’s ambiguous moralities.
There’s little in the way of explicit action in this trailer, even though it’s shot within the game engine itself. Action isn’t what the trailer is selling, however - it’s selling the city itself. As Niko struts through its succession of quick cuts, the sheer variety of Liberty City is elegantly illustrated, and Niko’s many guises suggests at the freedom the player will have to self-define within that space. Meanwhile, the exquisitely cool LCD Soundsystem track reaffirms Rockstar as gaming’s foremost tastemakers. It’s a brilliantly simple and boldly idiosyncratic trailer, intriguing and evocative in equal measure.
Jan 23, 2013
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - firstname.lastname@example.org (Alec Meer)
“This is like your nightmare interview here, huh?”>
Nah. This might not be going too well, but I’ve had worse. Much worse. (The most terrible was probably with an executive at one of the industry’s biggest PC game developers a couple of years back, where I had the distinct impression I was interviewing a robot who’d much rather murder me than talk to me).
This half hour with the lead designer of BioShock: Infinite would definitely win a place in my Top 40 Botched Interviews, but it’s not up there in shotgun-to-the-head territory yet. The mutual acknowledgement that it’s been a misfire does wonders too. Eventually. (more…)
Jan 18, 2013
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - email@example.com (Alec Meer)
Some interviews with prominent figures, as in Polygon’s widely-circulated one with BioShock: Infinite lead designer Ken Levine, are held on top of skyscraping Californian hotels. While it’s not something I’ve experienced myself, I can entirely appreciate why this often leads their eventual write-ups to be somewhat defined by awe, be it overt or subtle: a famous figure is encountered in a dramatic setting, the trappings of aspirational luxury around them. Thus, they are inevitably presupposed to be superhumans of a sort, with achievements and a lifestyle far beyond those of mere mortals such as the humble interviewer. This is the tale. Notoriously, this week also saw the outermost extreme of this, in Esquire’s absurd interview with/clearly lovelorn ode to the attractive but otherwise apparently unexceptional actor Megan Fox.
I can’t ever imagine going as far as Esquire, and I’d hope someone would throw me into the nearest sea if I did, but I do understand why it can happen. The scene is set in such a way that the interviewer is encountering, if not a god, then at least royalty. Even on a more moderate level, I have never conducted an interview in a Californian luxury hotel’s roofgarden, and my own interview with Ken Levine last month was no different, but I am nonetheless left thinking about the narrative created in that half hour. What tale could I now tell from just a talk with a guy in a room? Initially, I thought it impossible, or at least redundant, to spin a story out of a short, slightly awkward conversation in a dark little room somewhere in London: this is why Q&As are the standard interview format here. Let’s try, though. I want to tell you about what happened in that interview, and how it felt to me, as well as sharing Ken Levine’s comments about BioShock: Infinite’s characters, pacing and mysteries with you. (more…)
Here are the minimum and recommended specs for running BioShock Infinite PC. We can't say for sure whether you should run the game on PC, as opposed to Xbox 360 or PS3. But, judging by how good the first 4 1/2 hours of the game are, we recommend your run it on something.
These specs are from Infinite studio Irrational Games' official site:
OS: Windows Vista Service Pack 2 32-bit
Processor: Intel Core 2 DUO 2.4 GHz / AMD Athlon X2 2.7 GHz
Memory: 2 GB
Hard Drive: 20 GB free
Video Card: DirectX10 Compatible ATI Radeon HD 3870 / NVIDIA 8800 GT / Intel HD 3000 Integrated Graphics
Video Card Memory: 512 MB
Sound Card: DirectX Compatible
OS: Windows 7 Service Pack 1 64-bit
Processor: Quad Core Processor
Memory: 4 GB
Hard Drive: 30 GB free
Video Card: DirectX11 Compatible, AMD Radeon HD 6950 / NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560
Video Card Memory: 1024 MB
Sound Card: DirectX Compatible
If you want to know about control options and other PC options, read the full post.
PC Specifications for BioShock Infinite Announced! [Irrational Games]
Blocky recreations of BioShock's city beneath the sea are a popular construction choice for Minecraft's watery areas. Builders Kevin, Jake, and Stewie of the HungerCraft community chose the impossible, sinking their Rapture remake entirely underwater with meticulous detail. The scale and sheer complexity of their project would impress even the industrious Andrew Ryan, I suspect.
This version of Rapture also happens to be the next arena for HungerCraft's upcoming multiplayer match on January 19 themed around—you guessed it—author Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games series. A playthrough video of an early build (via FPS General) synchronizes the opening moments of BioShock quite seamlessly with the map, including the swim to the rain-drenched lighthouse and the bathysphere descent to the briny depths.
HungerCraft is holding a random drawing for participating in the match, which you can sign up for after registering on the forums.
Kevin, Jake and Stewie of website Hungercraft are to thank for this incredible recreation of BioShock's Rapture in Minecraft, captured perfectly not just in block form, but in a fantastic trailer as well.
If you're over Minecraft recreations, imagine it's LEGO BioShock. That'll get you there.
The map recreating the underwater metropolis will be released on January 19.
Jan 4, 2013
Sad that this March's BioShock Infinite won't be set in Rapture? You'll get a chance to re-visit the beautiful underwater city of the first two BioShock games with the newly announced Ultimate Rapture edition, which will boast an all-new Museum of Orphaned Concepts filled with concept art and character designs that weren't used for Irrational's hit franchise. The new bundle comes out on Jan. 14 for the PS3 and Xbox 360, at a cost of $30. Here's a full rundown of what's inside:
• Museum of Orphaned Concepts: Take a tour of a never-before-seen BioShock museum and view early concept art, character models and more set within the halls of Rapture.
• Plasmids Pack: Includes four additional Plasmids and Gene Tonics—Sonic Boom, EVE Saver, Vending Expert and Machine Buster—for use in BioShock.
• Challenge Rooms Pack: Previously exclusive to PS3™ and now available for Xbox 360 for the first time, the pack tests the player's mettle by requiring them to utilize the skills learned while traversing the halls of Rapture to survive three separate puzzle rooms in BioShock.
• Sinclair Solutions Tester: Contains a number of customization features that allow players to further their character's development in BioShock 2 multiplayer modes and provides a deeper multiplayer experience.
• Rapture Metro: Includes six additional multiplayer maps, an additional multiplayer gameplay mode and a rank increase to level 50 for BioShock 2 multiplayer.
• The Protector Trials: Features frantic combat and fast-paced action designed to push players' mastery of weapons and Plasmids in a BioShock 2 single-player experience spread across six maps.
• Minerva's Den: A substantial narrative experience that puts players in the role Subject Sigma and introduces new characters, locations and mystery to the world of Rapture in BioShock 2. Set in a new environment, Rapture Central Computing, Minerva's Den adds a gripping new storyline to extend the BioShock 2 experience.
• Also included, is an exclusive collectable sticker pack from BioShock Infinite's world of Columbia to get gamers ready for the next chapter in the BioShock universe.
Shacknews - Alice O'Connor
If you have skipped the BioShock series for some reason, perhaps due to a lengthy coma or immense silliness, you'll soon be able to make amends with one handy bundle. Publisher 2K today announced the BioShock: Ultimate Rapture Edition collection, which bundles the first two games together with all their DLC. Super keen BioShock fans may be interested too, as it introduces a new virtual museum level filled with BioShock history.
The merry bundle is coming to Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on January 14 in North America for $29.99. Sorry, PC pals, though you've probably snapped them up cheap in sales already anyway.
It includes the original BioShock and its two DLC releases, the power-adding Plasmids Pack and previously PS3-exclusive Challenge Rooms, not to mention that intriguing museum level. What 2K has to say about that is, "Take a tour of a never-before-seen BioShock museum and view early concept art, character models and more set within the halls of Rapture." Interesting!
Then, along with BioShock 2, you'll get the thoroughly splendid single-player mini-campaign Minerva's Den, Protector Trials challenge mode, and the frivolous multiplayer add-ons.
With BioShock Infinite arriving on March 26, keenly anticipated by our Jeff, 2K's looking to introduce the series to people who skipped it or are new to these here video games. And you poor coma folks, of course. Gosh, it's been five years since BioShock and three since the sequel.