Set in the steampunk Objectivist underwater dystopia of Rapture in the 1960's, Bioshock is a first-person shooter wherein the player arms and genetically modifies themselves in order to survive against the city's resident great minds-turned-maddened anomalies and aid a revolutionary leader named Atlas in overthrowing the city's ruling despot, Andrew Ryan.
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the video game equivalent of Chris Hemsworth in the 2016 Fembuters reboot wearing reading glasses with no lenses. a himbo reading a book upside down.
BUT, even if it's not as intelligent and put together as it thinks it is, even if there is a gaping chasm where gameplay and narrative should connect, it's still a very pretty game and an entertaining experience in its pure vacuousness.
BioShock as an aesthetic is the tops, imo. the fucking sea green tinted lighting. the art deco architecture. the really fun 40s/50s voice acting. the "environmental storytelling" gimmick here seems more genuine because this feels like one of the first to go this far with it and just paint graffiti over everything and pose corpses everywhere. it's a game world/setting that feels really unique to me still 14 years later.
i wish the writing wasn't so hamfisted and the narrative was maybe more straight up a pulp noir detective story and maybe all the Ayn Rand/objectivism stuff was left a little more unsaid and just used as decoration.
i always put off playing this because I played Infinite at release as my first BioShock and then gradually learned to hate it over the years, and i always presumed 1 would be like homework. I forgot that BioShock is basically call of duty for art kids (the way Nolan is Michael Bay for art kids). love this game's shotgun. the shooting is actually pretty crap all things considered (the way Nolan's action choreography is crap too) but the atmosphere really makes up for it and i always felt like pushing forward to see what new lovingly decorated arena i'd be mindlessly lowing fools away in - which is often all i am looking for at a baseline in a game.