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BioShock Infinite Review

Infinite is not as cohesive as its predecessors, but it presents a complex narrative and proficient combat

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Elizabeth helps during combat, yet she never feels part of the action. She avoids combat by hiding behind objects or just crouching out in the open. You might know enemies are around because you see her in a cautious state. She’s impervious to bullets, explosions and Vigor powers. Her only interaction during combat is through the player. She throws you health and ammo when the game decides you need them. This transforms her from a tangible character into an invincible game aid whenever there is action. Detaching her from the combat creates an irreparable separation between Elizabeth and the world of Columbia.

BioShock Infinite
Elizabeth provides aid during combat, unfortunately you can't use her as cover

Elizabeth’s ability to open space-time rifts changes the player’s focus during combat. You can bring in hooks which allow faster movement or surveillance. You can materialize a turret that gently chews through enemies. Rifts are exclusive to areas and although you can only use one at a time, you may open different ones at the press of a button. Using rifts aggressively tends to merely elongate the action over more traditional methods. Sometimes it’s more fun to ignore the rifts altogether. Rifts rarely improve the combat and only serve to keep the player busy when they could be focusing.

Sky-lines increase the speed of combat in a handful of areas. These are circular, suspended tracks that the player can traverse with the help of a Sky-hook. You can gracefully attach to these lines and use them for respite or attacks from above. Moving on Sky-lines is highly refined. Soaring around combat zones and detaching or reversing can feel athletic. You can crash down on enemies and quickly recover only to pull the same move further down the line. Jumping aboard gunships or shooting enemies off Sky-lines is fun while it lasts. Still, Sky-lines aren’t used as much as they could have been, but they may have become tiresome if used in every combat scenario.

The mystifying tale in Infinite survives all the way to the end and beyond. The lengthy finale doesn’t neatly explain all that has come before. Interesting themes, like slavery and religion, have faded by the conclusion. It’s certainly not as succinct as the clever ending in the original BioShock. Thankfully the story’s main objective, to make you ponder, is achieved with divine force. If you assemble the pieces to Infinite’s peculiar story, you should appreciate the effort required to create it. A smart story will always make you think and Infinite does not disappoint in this regard.

BioShock Infinite
Elizabeth ponders how she will tolerate babysitting the player for 10 more hours

Bioshock Infinite contains a stunning world and a fitting introduction. While the world isn’t as interwoven or engrossing as Rapture, it has appealing aspects from an artistic perspective. The puzzling story requires contemplation long after you put down your Sky-hook. The pacing is not as balanced as its predecessors because of a sloppy middle act. Although Elizabeth is a smart AI partner, she still needs some work before she doesn’t act like a set of routines with amazing eyes. Columbia is a city built on strong foundations, but BioShock Infinite does not reach the lofty heights of its predecessors.

Our ratings for BioShock Infinite on PC out of 100 (Ratings FAQ)
Consistent and fascinating art design push Columbia into an elevated tier. Sound chords clash with the combat to help make the action feel alive. Identical mannequins and a less engrossing world prevent greatness.
Vigors are like its predecessors Plasmids, but they lack the punch of those games. Weapons feel alright and are used often in the linear, open levels against uninteresting enemies. Sky-lines boost action speed and Rifts dilute existing mechanics. Many objectives are flaky and the bad pacing drags the game down.
Single Player
Infiniteís story finishes very differently from how it starts. During the middle section the tale becomes perplexing and abandons themes or characters. From this point itís hard to care about events. The entire confusing framework is there, if you can wrap your head around it.
(Show PC Specs)
CPU: Intel i5 3570k
GPU: Gigabyte 7950 OC 3GB
OS: Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
PC Specs

Infinite runs great aside from some noticeable, brief stutters when new areas are streamed in. Mouse sensitivity is high by default. Player can get stuck in the world briefly but there are no serious bugs. The checkpoint save system is extremely disappointing.
Infinite is a decent shooter that derives its action from the foundations of the series. The gameplay doesnít always make great use of new mechanics. Elizabeth is not believable enough and the city of Columbia is wasted potential outside the brilliant introduction.
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BioShock Infinite
BioShock Infinite box art Platform:
Our Review of BioShock Infinite
The Verdict:
Game Ranking
BioShock Infinite is ranked #5107 out of 1646 total reviewed games. It is ranked #159 out of 158 games reviewed in 2013.
5106. Batman: Arkham City
PlayStation 3
5107. BioShock Infinite
5108. BioShock Infinite
PlayStation 3
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