And so it ends. Again. I guess. After two trips through this game I think we’re finally going to let this dead horse have some peace. Here is what Josh had to say about this episode when it originally went live:
But that’s all water under the bridge now. In retrospect, this season did provide (in my mind, at least) a fairly compelling counterpoint to Bioshock’s overwhelming praise in the larger gaming community. Was it a good game? Sure, I think I can at least give it that. At least it had some fairly surprising twists – there are a lot of games with gameplay that’s just as bad (or worse) that have no redeeming factors whatsoever. But was it a great game? It seemed like the whole momentum of the game’s story relied on those few twists – or really just the one – and after that truly great moment, not only does the whole game spiral sharply downwards in an irrevocable stall, but I never felt any desire to play it again until we decided to do it for this season.
And yet to play devil’s advocate to my own devil’s advocacy, it is worth noting that the unanimous praise was largely aimed at the console version. I’m not sure if the gameplay was significantly better on the 360 or not – I probably wouldn’t be able to tell, playing shooters with thumbsticks is a skill which endlessly baffles me. But I think I can conclusively say that the PC version of Bioshock, at the very least, fails to live up to its hype. By far
I think BioShock is a pretty smart game… for a shooter. Which is like being the sexiest Ferengi, or the world’s tallest midget.
I do wonder what would have happened if they simply ended the game quickly after the confrontation with Ryan. No big boss fight. No long slog. Maybe a rapid tying up of plot threads and a quick set-piece escape to the surface. I’d love to jump into that alternate reality and see how the audience responded. Would people fault the game because you didn’t get to fight the metaphorical mecha-Hitler at the end? Would it have sold worse? Would it have shaken up the genre by challenging the notion that shooters need to end in huge gun battles?
I honestly don’t know. I would have liked the game a lot better, but given our complaints versus the adoration of the masses, it’s really doesn’t matter all that much if the game didn’t work for us.
Thanks for watching. Again.
And yes, I do plan to update the archives. It’s on my to-do list.