BioShock 2 launches on Mac in Janaury 2012 as a boxed game and a download - nearly two years after it launched on PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

The Mac edition, courtesy of Mac specialist publisher Feral Interactive, includes a separate multiplayer game, The Fall of Rapture, set prior to BioShock. You play a mutated test subject for plasmid manufacturer Sinclair Solutions. Yummy.

BioShock 2 on Mac costs £24.95 in the UK, €29.95 in Europe and $34.95 in the US. Expect it to be sold online from the usual subjects, the Mac App Store and

The minimum system requirements are: 2.0 GHz Intel Mac with at least 4GB RAM; Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later, and 256MB of graphics memory.

The following graphics cards are not supported: ATI X1xxx series, ATI 2400, NVIDIA 9400, NVIDIA 7xxx series and Intel GMA series.

The following cards require require 4GB of system RAM: NVIDIA 320M and Intel HD 3000.

Shacknews - Steve Watts

Better late than never, as the saying goes. BioShock 2 will be coming to the Mac platform in January of next year. The port is being handled by Feral Interactive, the studio behind the Mac versions of Mafia 2, Batman: Arkham Asylum, and the original BioShock.

The game will retail for $34.95, and will be offered as a digital download from partners and the Mac App Store. The announcement mentions that it includes the "Fall of Rapture" multiplayer mode, but doesn't give any indication that the excellent Minerva's Den downloadable content will come to the platform.

The minimum system requirements are a 2.0 GHz Intel Mac with at least 4GB RAM, Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later, and 256MB of graphics memory. The game doesn't support ATI X1xxx series, ATI 2400, NVIDIA 9400, NVIDIA 7xxx series, or Intel GMA series graphics cards.

"BioShock 2 shows Rapture in a completely new light," said Feral managing director David Stephen, in the announcement. "By allowing players to be a Big Daddy, it explores the emotional consequences of the Rapture project."


Ever since Epic's Gears of War plucked heartstrings with a cover of Tears for Fears' "Mad World" game creators have been attempting to recreate that magic, forging an emotional bond between gamers and game through evocative music. Let's see how good a job Transformers: Fall of Cybertron and BioShock Infinite did of it with their respective Spike VGA Awards debut trailers.

First we'll look at Transformers: Fall of Cybertron, the trailer that takes a much more Gears of War approach to matching song with action.

The music chosen by Activision and developer High Moon Studios to punctuate the clash of giant intelligent robots on a planet far, far away is a decidedly down-to-earth track from Puscifer, a side project of Tool's Maynard James Keenan with backing vocals, interestingly enough, by Mila Jovovich of Resident Evil movie fame.

While quite open to interpretation, to me "The Humbling River" is a song about crossing over to a new level of enlightenment, something that can't be done through guns or money or power.

Pay no mind to the battles you've won
It'll take a lot more than rage and muscle
Open your heart and hands my son
Or you'll never make it over the river

Again, widely open to interpretation. Still I think it's a rather appropriate tune for the setting of the final war for Cybertron, considering the final lines of the song.

It'll take a lot more that words and guns
A whole lot more than riches and muscle
The hands of the many must join as one
And together we'll cross the river

Til all are one, Transformers fans. Til all are one.

The second entry in the touching music trailer competition this year was BioShock Infinite. 2K and Irrational took a slightly more original approach to the music for this trailer, creating their own cover of the religious classic "Will the Circle Be Unbroken" sung by Courtnee Draper, the voice actress for the game's female lead, Elizabeth.

It's actually rather catchy for a religious tune, so much so that it's been covered dozens of times by dozens of bands over the years, though as Ars Technica points out, the song being covered has been slightly altered from the 1907 original. Since BioShock Infinite takes place in an alternate version of 1912, the original lyrics (before the song got all Lord-ified) were the right ones to pick.

As you can see in this video of a couple of folks covering the song in its original form, the chorus remains intact, and that's the bit I'm sure the BioShock Infinite folks chose the song for.

Will the circle be unbroken
By and by, by and by?
In a better home awaiting
In the sky, in the sky?

See? There's a city in the sky! It all makes sense now. Well it made sense this weekend as well; now it's just sensier. Yes, that's a word.

So there we have it, two trailers' worth of touching tunes, one perhaps chosen for its similarity to the message of peace from a 1980s cartoon, the other because of indirect ties to the game's plot. Did either make you want the games more?


The upcoming BioShock: Infinite has a new trailer. It's for the VGA Awards. This is it.

The trailer looks great and features a fantasy cover of the hymn "Will the Circle Be Unbroken?" It is, however, a tad on the short side.

BioShock: Infinite will be out in 2012.


The upcoming BioShock: Infinite has a new trailer. It's for the VGA Awards. This is it.

The trailer looks great and features a fantasy cover of the hymn "Will the Circle Be Unbroken?" It is, however, a tad on the short side.

BioShock: Infinite will be out in 2012.


Here's...One New BioShock Infinite ScreenshotIt's a tease for the game's new trailer, to be shown at the VGAs next week.

Way to be stingy, guys! In lieu of actual facts, then, we're going to substitute them for non-facts.

Folks, this is Eusebius Fink, owner of the Sky City Knickerbockers. He's made entirely of bronze, stands eleven feet tall, and is terrified of pigeons.

He's also a keen hunter, and a part-time hustler, so has a lot of MotherFuckin' Guns. Which is why his house is so big, and has that written right on the top of it.


The latest "Co-Op Life" video from Machinima focuses on Bioshock, and it's pretty funny stuff. A couple of guys are playing the game on the couch, and the whole experience has… well, it's come out into the real world with them. It's basically a much more high-budget approach to the same kind of satire we've seen of other videos, but in this case, the bigger production values pay off.

Bonus points for a quality Die Hard reference, and special recognition to the funny little girl who plays the Little Sister. If you had someone in the room with you when you made that first save/harvest decision, you may well have had a similar conversation.

"Why are you… what are you doing!?!?"

"It's… just a game?"

"I'm breaking up with you."

PC Gamer
Bioshock Infinite - Elizabeth
Without giving too much away, a key twist in the original BioShock story is to do with your character being completely mute throughout the game. It was an interesting twist on Gordon Freeman-like character design, and a comment on the game’s key themes of determinism versus free will.

In BioShock Infinite, the protagonist - Booker DeWitt - will be able to speak. In an interview with IGN, its creator Ken Levine explained the decision. “How do you go back and say okay, well you're that kind of character again after you already had that discussion with the gamer?” asked Levine. “Our response to it was, let's really place you firmly in the world this time. Let's give you a story, let's give you a character to develop a personal story...You're very active, your story is very active, Elizabeth's story is very active.”

Although the protagonist may have found his vocal chords, Levine still values the use of silence in the game. Core to the game is damsel-in-distress Elizabeth’s relationship with Songbird, a strange mechanical bird that’s served as her friend and warden, and is now pursuing Elizabeth and DeWitt through the airborne city of Columbia. But, as Levine says, Songbird will never utter a word.

“The nice thing about silence is it forces you to make very clear decisions about that character,” said Levine. “It forces you to make that character have very clear motivations because you can't caught up in a ton of subtlety...It doesn't necessarily require words.”

Levine goes on to point out that visuals are more important than sounds in-game, because you generally tend to only hear a line of dialogue once, whereas images stay on screen for a lot longer. And the BioShock games have always been great at this visual storytelling - watch the original’s intro without sound and you still get a fairly good idea of what’s going on.

It’s an interesting change to the franchise. Adding vocals to Isaac Clarke in Dead Space 2 was a vast improvement, and his character suddenly felt a lot more fleshed-out - so to speak. But the critical question is how the story’s going to work in its inevitable twists without having a protagonist who gasps “OH MY GOD I REALLY WASN’T EXPECTING THAT DID YOU JUST SEE WHAT HAPPENED” all the time.

The BioShock movie isn't happening. Blame the special effects, blame the water, blame Hollywood. Whatever. It's Dead.

That doesn't mean there aren't bands of eager filmmakers roaming the internet, making fan films and trailers, like the one right up there. Because there are.

And what they lack in special effects and money, they make up in gumption.

You can contact Brian Ashcraft, the author of this post, at You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.


Like Rich Wine and Sharp Cheese, Some Games Just Go Well TogetherI've noticed over the years that I enjoy playing games in pairs, coupling them like a fine wine and a dry, aged cheese. (Or a hoppy beer and a slice of spicy pizza, if you prefer.) I've got professional obligations now that I didn't have in the past, but all the same, I find that I tend to experience my gaming two games at a time.

It's vital, then, to choose a good pairing—a yin and a yang, a chocolate and a vanilla, a Cagney and a Lacey. Sometimes a great pairing happens by coincidence—two complimentary games are released right around the same time. Sometimes they are the result of careful planning. I thought it would be fun to look back at some memorable gaming pairings that I've enjoyed over the past few years, and to see what kinds of pairs you all are enjoying during this jam-packed holiday season.

Bioshock and Oblivion

In the mid-2000s, I took a few years off from gaming. It was during the period of time that the new generation of consoles was released, but I mostly missed it as it was happening. I didn't get an Xbox 360 when it was new. I never tried to play Kameo and try to tell myself that yes, this was what the next generation of gaming was going to look like.

By 2007, there were several games on the console that felt truly "Next Gen". The first two games I got, in the late summer of 2007, were The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion and Bioshock. In fact, it was Oblivion that finally convinced me to take the plunge and buy a 360. I spent the next month or so playing those two games nonstop.

What a dynamite pairing those two were! Oblivion gave me heady exploration with a hint of.. well, infinity. It was a game that was as exciting or as relaxing as I wanted it to be. Bioshock gave me a more tightly controlled experience, but one that was just open enough not to feel weirdly restrictive compared to Oblivion.

It was a special time, and a special pair of games. That same fall, there were other combinations, as well, including...

Half Life 2 and Mass Effect

Good gravy, will we ever see another Fall like the Fall of 2007? Actually, I'd argue that this current fall is its equal, at least in terms of quality. But 2007 had so many special things going for it—and among them, the release of Valve's Half-Life collection The Orange Box and the very first Mass Effect.

I binged on Mass Effect when it finally came out, but all of my downtime was spent playing Half-Life 2, a game which I had been wanting to play since the day it was first teased, but which I hadn't had a PC capable of running it since it had been released.

The combination of Mass Effect's cinematic story and Half-Life 2's breathless pacing and puzzles was damn near perfect. Soon I was tearing into my second playthrough of Mass Effect, just as I was finally finishing Half-Life 2 and moving on to its episodic content. Hopefully BioWare's next magnum opus will release alongside Half-Life 3. A guy can dream, right?

The Witcher 2 and L.A. Noire

This was an odd pairing from earlier this year, a combination that didn't quite sit right, though I thought it would. Here we have two semi-open games, two defined, interesting protagonists, two mysteries that need solving. But while Geralt's adventure in The Witcher 2 grabbed me from the start, I found that L.A. Noire made for a strange counterpoint.

Part of this is that when it came down to it, I didn't like L.A. Noire that much. But I didn't hate it or anything… I think that the bigger problem was the two games' incompatible pacing. The Witcher 2 is a long game, but not too long—it benefits from a strong sense of momentum and a story that doesn't encourage wandering. L.A. Noire, on the other hand, has some truly strange pacing—most of the game is spent watching, waiting, walking around… the odd new gameplay types combined with the large but empty city to create something blank and empty. Its cool, stark tone mixed about as well with the randy, colorful scatter of The Witcher 2 as tomato juice mixes with sushi. An interesting combination, but not one I'd necessarily recommend.

Skyrim and Saints Row: The Third

This has been the most recent pairing, obviously, and it's worked out pretty well. I was playing Saints Row for review, so I was focused mainly on the story missions. Skyrim on the other hand, as I mentioned earlier tonight, has been a game that I play simply to wander around.

The two games fit together surprisingly well—they're a real Yin and Yang. Saints Row is a adrenaline shot of goofy craziness, but it can be overwhelming. When I need a break, it's time to switch to Skyrim and walk up some mountain or other. Put it this way:

Sword and Sworcery and World of Goo

When I first got an iPad, I found myself inundated with games I wanted to play. These two were right at the top of the list, and quickly supplanted any other games (Sorry Gravity Hook! Apologies Monkey Island 2!). I'd play through one of Sword and Sworcery's chapters, listening to the soothing music while I guided my avatar through puzzle after strange puzzle. But at some point, I'd get stuck (most notably during the bit with the moon), and would kick over to 2D Boy's goo-based puzzler to play a quick couple of levels.

Once more, the games proved to be brilliantly complimentary, and I still find myself putting them together to this day. But as great as those two are, of all the recent gaming pairings I've enjoyed, I think that my favorite has been…

Arkham Asylum and Shadow Complex

I think this might be my favorite one. In August of 2009, I found myself in the possession of two games that would eventually become two of my favorite games of all time. Both were action/exploration games that featured Metroidvania-style backtracking and upgrading. Both used the Unreal engine. I played both on the Xbox 360.

But as similar as the two games are on paper, they're just different enough in practice to make for a phenomenal combination. Shadow Complex allows for more bite-sized exploration, and is presented in a 2-dimensional format that is less visually intense than Arkham Asylum's 3D adventure. Shadow Complex also has a much simpler story than Arkham Asylum, and none of the crazy twists and turns that made Rocksteady's first Batman game so much fun.

At times, it felt like I would take breaks from Arkham Asylum and use Shadow Complex to keep my mental Metroidvanina-muscles limber for when I returned. But when it comes down to it, those two games were simply great games—either one probably could have gone well with anything.

Of course, these are just a few recent pairings that I can remember. There are plenty more, and lots of classics from decades past that I haven't taken the time to detail. For now, I turn it over to you—what are some of your favorite games pairings from the past? What are some of the worst? Are you combining any games this holiday season?

You can contact Kirk Hamilton, the author of this post, at You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.

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