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BioShock 2

aka: BioShock 2: Sea of Dreams

[ All ] [ Macintosh ] [ PlayStation 3 ] [ Windows ] [ Xbox 360 ]

Critic Reviews 84% add missing review

Brash Games (10 out of 10)

There is little, in my opinion, to hate about Bioshock 2. As it stands it’s a fabulous game, but it’s when you play the original, then Bioshock 2, that the real love for the game comes through. Thank you 2K Games, Bioshock 2 is an outstanding game that takes you on a emotionally exhausting ride.

Mar 11th, 2011 · Windows · read review

GamesRadar (10 out of 10)

The weapons are better. The plasmids are better. The enemies are better. At some points, even the storytelling is better. What’s most amazing and surprising about BioShock 2, however, is that by diving deeper into Rapture’s tortured history and exploring more of Rapture’s haunted world, it actually manages to make the original BioShock better, too.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Game Shark (A)

What makes BioShock 2 truly special, however, has little to do with the individual elements I’ve praised here. What elevates it above the sum of its parts is the genuinely impactful narrative, something that parents, in particular, will appreciate. Both the first and second title offer scathing indictments of political extremism (capitalism/individualism in the first, communism/collectivism in the second), and the first game ultimately comments on the lack of free will. Here, you are given something more precious to shape – and the free will to do what you would with it. If BioShock 1 is ultimately about what it is to be a slave, the sequel shows – with a sophistication rarely seen in gaming – what it is to be a parent, with the power to love or to harm.

Feb 21st, 2010 · Windows · read review

Hardcore Gamer Magazine (4.75 out of 5)

The burning question you are probably asking right now is BioShock 2 better than the first? As far as single player goes, I think nothing will capture the initial highs you got from taking in Rapture for the first time, and the enormous twist the original delivered. However, the sequel’s story is just as intense and has its own narrative highs and a mean twist of its own, and I think the end payoff is a bit more impactful and sinks in better than the ending of the first BioShock. Throw in a surprisingly deep and addictive multiplayer component, and you have a must buy for fans of the first game and newcomers to the franchise.

Feb 2010 · Windows · read review

Game Over Online (94 out of 100)

Was the return to Rapture worth it? Absolutely. Although the odds seemed stacked against the developers, having to do without both Ryan and Levine, they have delivered a rich, awesome trip through one the most fantastic video game environments ever built. You should be able to find a copy easily in a local Circus Of Values machine... and you can hack it for a discounted price.

Mar 3rd, 2010 · Windows · read review

Impulse Gamer (9.2 out of 10)

Bloody amazing! The original game went beyond those clichéd first person shooters and in creating a sequel, the developers have fleshed out the city of Rapture even more but more importantly, have streamlined the gameplay, making it a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Of course, without the detailed characters and story of BioShock 2, it would not have reached these levels and of course, the luscious graphics. Add in dozens of secrets, multiple endings and of course a very sturdy multiplayer engine and the developers have covered all facets in this extraordinary game.

Feb 2010 · Windows · read review

Game Revolution (A-)

Don't misunderstand me, now. This here adventure might sound like Rapture has become the go-see destination for another money-grubbin’ franchise hawkin' fantastic cruises an' wondrous sights. No worries there, though. Up yonder is a city where the great chain o' progress will always be twisted, an' where hell has put on the ritz. No place for a vacation unless you're fixin' to find the great hereafter. But if you're lookin' for a show and you're stuck here anyways, Rapture is gooder'n grits.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

3D Juegos (9.1 out of 10)

Bioshock 2 supone el regreso de Rapture y su Gran Cadena, y con ésta una nueva inmersión en las profundas aguas que envuelven a Rapture, y por ende, también en lo más oscuro del ser humano. Algo falta del espíritu único del original, aunque para ser honestos aquello era poco menos que irrepetible, pero eso no debe ser óbice para considerar a este videojuego un sobresaliente manifiesto del estado de madurez que el First Person Shooter ha alcanzado en esta generación.

Feb 17th, 2010 · Windows · read review

IGN (9.1 out of 10)

It's going to be a familiar experience for anyone that played the original, but BioShock 2's improvements to gameplay and its more focused storyline make for a game that's more playable and easier to digest. Some of the sense of awe and mystery is lost in transition, but the strength of the setting and more interesting implementation of moral choice make for an experience that's more consistent and rewarding. Anyone looking for a first-person shooter that offers more than flat, stereotypical characters and copy-and-paste supersoldier plots, one that attempts to establish a sense of right and wrong and loops you into the decision making process, and one that's set in one of the most vividly realized settings around should pick up BioShock 2. It's a game in which story, setting, and gameplay are expertly blended to create an experience that's as thought-provoking as it is entertaining.

Feb 9th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Cheat Happens (9 out of 10)

Bioshock 2 isn’t the game its predecessor was, but it does a damn good job trying to be. 2K Marin does a great job trying to replicate the feeling of the original with only a few missteps. It’s not going to replace anyone’s love for the original but it will be considered as one of the year’s best. Welcome back Rapture. You’ve been missed.

Feb 16th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Jeuxvideo.com (18 out of 20)

La méfiance vis-à-vis de cette suite qui pour beaucoup, ne s'imposait pas, vole en éclats rapidement au contact d'un gameplay plus riche et plus intense que jamais. Bioshock 2, tout en se tournant plus volontiers vers l'action, parvient à retrouver l'essence de son prédécesseur et sans la trahir, nous offre une aventure grandiose. Beau, dérangé et terriblement cohérent, le bébé de 2K Marin et de ses pairs est un jeu à ne manquer sous aucun prétexte.

Feb 9th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Atomic Gamer (90 out of 100)

But shiny water effects simply don't fix the game's meandering, rambling plot, and while that's not as big a deal in a game that's focused almost solely on the action, you should be trying to understand what's going on to get the most out of BioShock 2 - and the developers didn't make that terribly easy. The "wow" factor of seeing Rapture for the first time is gone as well, killing off some of the novelty and the spectacle of an underwater city dystopia full of drug-addled crazies. Sure, it's all here, but we've seen it before. BioShock 2 manages to pull through with superior action, though, and despite its problems, it still makes for a damn great game.

Feb 11th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Gamer Limit (9 out of 10)

Overall While it doesn't quite have the same penetrating, vivid experience as the original, BioShock 2 spins a thrilling tale of Sofia Lamb, "The Family," and their maniacal ideals of Utopian society. Multiplayer does have its' high points, but pales in comparison to the finely crafted single player.

Feb 18th, 2010 · Windows · read review

videogamer.com (9 out of 10)

Combat is better, thanks to the dual wielding, better enemy variety and larger scale encounters; hacking has been simplified, now making use of a timing-based button pressing mechanic that fits far better than the tubes seen in the previous game; and replay value has been enhanced by the sheer number of ways you can customise your character through use of Adam and upgrade stations. The game's finale appears to have benefited from the criticism levelled at the first game, and there's even a far better than expected multiplayer mode; one that is more likely to keep you away from Modern Warfare 2 than almost every other multiplayer FPS released in the last six months, simply because it's something a bit different. If 2K had managed to tell a story that equalled or bettered that found in the original, we'd have been left with an unquestionably better experience, rather than just a more exciting, smarter shooter.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

GameZone (9 out of 10)

Bioshock 2 is an atmospheric, immersive game that does more than just hold a candle to its beloved predecessor. The campaign is engaging, the multiplayer is great, and the new gameplay elements are excellent. Don’t miss out on this one.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

InsideGamer (9 out of 10)

BioShock 2 biedt dik tien uur aan mooie gamemomenten die een glimlach op je gezicht zullen toveren. Het verkennen van ruimtes is vermakelijk, het verhaal wordt op sublieme wijze aan de speler overgebracht en de door jou gemaakte keuzes hebben aan het eind van het spel een opvallend gevolg. Het déjà vu-gehalte is misschien wat aan de hoge kant, maar op geen enkel moment had ik het gevoel dat ik met de game wilde stoppen. Sterker nog, ik ga de game dit weekend voor een tweede keer uitspelen en eens kijken wat er gebeurt als ik compleet andere keuzes maak!

Feb 9th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Cynamite (9 out of 10)

BioShock 2 fesselt weniger als der Vorgänger, dafür gibt’s einige Szenen, bei denen einem der Mund offen stehen bleibt! Neben umfangreichen Tests findet ihr auch interessante Specials in der neuen Games Aktuell.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

PC Games (Germany) (89 out of 100)

Bioshock 2 muss sich nur an einem messen lassen: seinem Vorgänger. Große Fußstapfen, aber Bioshock 2 schlägt sich wacker – sehr wacker sogar, wenn auch nicht „Hey, das ist ja noch besser als Teil 1!“-wacker. Dafür überzeugt mich die Story zu wenig – sie ist einfach zu weit von Teil 1 entfernt, zu sehr dazugedichtet und zu unausgewogen im Erzähltempo. Dafür hat sich die Serie aus Sicht eines Ego-Shooter-Fans ordentlich weiterentwickelt, auch wenn die Gegner-KI noch immer zu wünschen übrig lässt. Nach dem ausgiebigen Konsum vieler Vorschau- und Testversionen auf unterschiedlichsten Plattformen kristallisiert sich für mich außerdem eine Eigenheit der PC-Variante heraus: Sie ist besser. Das mag merkwürdig klingen, wo doch alle Fassungen eigentlich identisch sind, jedoch lebt eine Serie wie Bioshock von Atmosphäre, Stimmung und Grafik.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Hooked Gamers (8.8 out of 10)

The single player story is left at a point where there is room left for a third installment, possibly in the role as a Big Sister – who knows. Either way, I for one, will be looking forward to it. In the meantime, I will just have to play through BioShock 2 a few more times.

Feb 22nd, 2010 · Windows · read review

ComputerGames.ro (87 out of 100)

Although I understand why BioShock 2 was made, I appreciate some ideas the designers had and acknowledge that it improves certain areas, I can’t help but feel that some of the magic was lost along the way. The single-player hiccups brutally pull you out of what otherwise is a captivating world you can explore to discover its secrets, and on the long run, the multiplayer won’t be anything more than a cute break between two Bad Company / Modern Warfare 2 matches, despite the rewards given for your loyalty.

Mar 7th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Vandal Online (8.6 out of 10)

BioShock 2 esconde algunas sorpresas en su desarrollo, sorpresas jugables muy interesantes, que, sin embargo, no resultan tan impactantes como en la primera parte, ni tampoco tan sustanciales. Pero ahí están, y parece que puede convertirse en la marca de la casa en cuanto a esta saga. El juego nos propone una buena historia, y un modo para un jugador cohesionado, bueno, pero continuista en exceso, pese a depurar múltiples aspectos. Resulta demasiado familiar al llevarnos de vuelta a Rapture, de vuelta al pellejo de un Big Daddy, de vuelta a decisiones morales -con un trasfondo simplista a no poder más- y de vuelta a muchas más cosas; los cambios y novedades muestran que se ha hecho un buen trabajo para mejorar la experiencia de juego en la escafandra, algo que ocupaba relativamente poco espacio de su primera parte, y que -por supuesto- necesitaba muchísima depuración para funcionar como el elemento jugable principal de esta entrega.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

4Players.de (86 out of 100)

Die spürbar erweiterte Charakterentwicklung lässt viele unterschiedliche Spielweisen zu - BioShock macht damit erneut vor, wie nahtlos Rollenspiel und Ego-Shooter ineinander greifen können. Doch was wurde aus der kreativen Vision, auf deren Fundament einst ein Kunstwerk stand? Es gibt sie noch. War Andrew Ryans wahr gewordenes Utopia allerdings einst der Hauptdarsteller, dient es jetzt nur als Kulisse eines mit herkömmlichen Mitteln inszenierten Schauspiels. Und immerhin: Das Bühnenstück gelingt den Autoren ganz hervorragend. Zwar fehlen den Dramaturgen die technischen Mittel, um ihr Werk glaubwürdig zum Leben zu erwecken. Wenn man sich darauf einlässt, was die Akteure tun und was sie sagen, erfährt man aber viele kleine Geschichten in einem reifen emotionalen Abenteuer.

Feb 9th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Worth Playing (8.5 out of 10)

BioShock 2 is still worth the price of admission to Rapture. Although it feels far more action-packed and is more of a linear submarine ride into the deep blue than the original title, what it does exceptionally well is bringing even more of Rapture's storied existence to the surface for some closure. The familiar gameplay doesn't veer too far from the original, which is both good and bad. It's good because it's familiar, but it's also worrisome considering that it occasionally felt more like an expansion pack. BioShock 2 is a unique story that pleasantly adds to the existing mythos instead of upending what came before "just because." By the time I came up for air at the end, I still wanted to keep diving back for more.

Feb 17th, 2010 · Windows · read review

RealGamer (8.5 out of 10)

Whilst Bioshock 2 may feel very similar to the original game, it does expand on the characters and story that were introduced in the original game and once again allows you to create a very customisable playing experience through the use of Plasmids and Tonics. The constant references to the original game may make it slightly inaccessible to new players, but fans of the first game will once again be hooked until the end.

Feb 22nd, 2010 · Windows · read review

GameStar (Germany) (85 out of 100)

Ja, Bioshock 2 ist wie der der erste Teil. Und dann auch wieder nicht. Denn der philosophische Unterbau, der uns im Vorgänger noch faszinierte (oder wahlweise nervte), fehlt. Ebenso fehlen die wirklichen Schockmomente, das Grauen, das Bioshock über weite Strecken ausgemacht hat. Mich stört’s nicht, im Gegenteil. Denn mir war von vornherein klar, dass Bioshock 2 nicht noch mal das gleiche Maß an Verzauberung bewerkstelligen konnte, dafür hätte man ein anderes, ein ganz neues Spiel mit neuen Eindrücken machen müssen. Weil’s die nicht gibt, genieße ich das, was das Spiel mir bietet: nämlich launige und dank der Waffenvielfalt abwechslungsreiche Kämpfe in nach wie vor toller Umgebung - diesmal sogar, ohne dass ich mir dabei die Finger verknote. Ein Hoch auf den gleichzeitigen Einsatz von Waffen und Plasmiden!

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Everyeye.it (8.5 out of 10)

Bioshock 2 si configura come seguito naturale di uno dei giochi più singolari e stupefacenti, appartenente ad un genere ancora non standardizzato, ma bellissimo nella sua ibridata realtà. Sfortunatamente le poche novità non bastano a distogliere la memoria del videogiocatore dalla storia affascinante del capitolo precedente, lasciando tutti troppo consapevoli di come affrontare i nemici e come procedere nei livelli. In definitiva se Rapture era riuscita, nel 2007, a catturare la nostra attenzione sarà divertente intraprendere le gesta di un enorme Big Daddy, se invece è la prima volta che sentiamo il nome di Andrew Ryan sarebbe meglio procedere per gradi e acquistare, risparmiando anche qualche euro, il primo strabiliante capitolo della saga.

Feb 15th, 2010 · Windows · read review

GamersGlobal (8.5 out of 10)

Bioshock 2 kann die durch den Vorgänger sehr hoch gesteckten Erwartungen nicht ganz erfüllen. Zu zahlreich sind die Standardkämpfe, zu oft gleicht sich der Spielablauf. Dennoch ist die Geschichte spannend erzählt und bietet viele Einblicke in die Geschichte von Rapture und der Big Daddies. Dazu kommen spannende Bosskämpfe in einzigartigen Umgebungen und eine Vielzahl an Plasmiden und Toniken, die zum Experimentieren einladen. Actionspieler und Fans des ersten Teils gleichermaßen sollten mehr als nur einen Blick riskieren.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

GamingExcellence (8.5 out of 10)

BioShock was so ahead of its time when it first came out, that its sequel can be forgiven for simply following in the same path and hitting the same notes. Is it a revelation that will change the face of gaming forever? No. Is it game of the year material? Sadly, it’s not that either. BioShock 2 is however, is a great gaming experience that still feels fresh and unique enough to make you glad you purchased and played it all the way through. Rapture lives on, and it’s easy to recommend that you dive right into this underwater dystopia once again.

Feb 22nd, 2010 · Windows · read review

Gamernode (8.5 out of 10)

When it comes down to it, BioShock 2 really can't compare to the excellence that was the original BioShock. But that isn't so much a detriment to BioShock 2 as it is a compliment to BioShock. The game tells its own new story in Rapture that adds to the lore and history of the game universe, and is very entertaining. Rapture has lost its scare factor, but still keeps its creepiness. A good multiplayer is hurt due to technical faults, but good graphics, another quality soundtrack, and upgraded gameplay all make this a solid entry in what will hopefully be a continued BioShock series. Fans of the original would be wise to pick the game up. Anyone else looking for a quality title to enjoy should definitely consider taking a plunge into Rapture.

Feb 13th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Cheat Code Central (4.2 out of 5)

BioShock 2 is a great game that I thoroughly enjoyed playing. Unfortunately, the experience wasn't as fresh as I'd have liked. It seems like the dev teams didn't take enough chances for fear of alienating the rabid fan base. Still, despite the overwhelming familiarity of the title, there's a load of quality gaming to be found here. It's definitely worth suiting up and heading back into Rapture.

Feb 2010 · Windows · read review

GamingTrend (82 out of 100)

Overall, Bioshock 2 is a good game. Not stupendous like the first one, but then again, it doesn't have a lackluster ending like the first one did. Luckily, this seems to close the book of Rapture as I cannot see another return trip to the city under the sea. I can wholeheartedly recommend the game if you enjoyed the first one, though. There is one small issue that did crop up after the release of the game that dealt with the DLC. Looks like the DLC was already contained within the release candidate and 2K games only sold unlock codes. I will not take points off for this, but I do believe a person purchasing the game should know this. Other than that, enjoy the game and welcome to Rapture…again!

Feb 2010 · Windows · read review

AceGamez (80 out of 100)

Bioshock 2 is a fun game. Maybe I should have mentioned that at the very beginning but I feel it’s an honest and accurate way to wrap it up. There’s nothing here that’s groundbreaking, and if you’ve played the original you’ll fit back into the sequel like a comfy pair of slippers. Even though there will be many disappointed with the lack of innovation, 2K have ensured genuine entertainment mixed with a few nice touches to draw the player in emotionally a little more than in the original. Fanboys can breathe a sigh of relief and newcomers can enjoy a solid gaming experience—a universal appeal that not many games are able to achieve.

Feb 27th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Gameplay (Benelux) (80 out of 100)

Bioshock 2 laat iets te veel steken vallen om een waardige opvolger van het klassieke origineel te zijn.

Feb 27th, 2010 · Windows

GameSpy ( )

I had my doubts as to how a different studio would handle a sequel to one of the best games of this generation, but 2K Marin (which took the baton from original BioShock developer Irrational Games) has proven that Rapture's still ripe for storytelling. Sure, the wonder of experiencing Rapture for the first time is gone, and yes, the engine is really starting to show its age, but the most important element -- BioShock 2's narrative -- lives up to its heritage. That said, I can't emphasize enough how badly I want the next BioShock to leave the sea behind for good. The first time was rapture, the second time's been solid, but a third visit to the depths would make me wonder if creativity's been lost to the abyss.

Feb 10th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Adrenaline Vault, The (AVault) ( )

Bioshock 2 is a very good addition to anyone’s game collection. The single-player campaign is substantial in length, and the multiplayer mode extends the value even further. Plus, the developers are planning some DLC, mostly for the multiplayer modes.

Mar 11th, 2010 · Windows · read review

CPU Gamer (7.5 out of 10)

BioShock 2’s final hours proved there’s some life left in Rapture, but whether or not the developers can channel that kind of energy for BioShock 3 is up in the air. The series is already at a point of diminishing returns and its getting dangerously close to becoming creatively stagnant.

Feb 22nd, 2010 · Windows · read review

Games Finder (7.5 out of 10)

The swap to a Big Daddy in BioShock 2 definitely took plenty of people by surprise but the change has worked perfectly, offering an entirely new BioShock experience.

Aug 23rd, 2014 · Windows · read review

2404.org PC Gaming (7.5 out of 10)

Once you reach the final hours of this 10-12 hour game, the developers really find their own unique voice for BioShock 2. Instead of feeling like it’s aping everything its predecessor did, it steps in, and presents its own ideas and its own ambitions. It’s just, by that point, all the previous hours were filled with tedium and with such an overwhelming sense of familiarity, that it started to become I game I simply played because it was a sequel to BioShock. BioShock 2’s final hours proved there’s some life left in Rapture, but whether or not the developers can channel that kind of energy for BioShock 3 is up in the air. The series is already at a point of diminishing returns and its getting dangerously close to becoming creatively stagnant.

Feb 22nd, 2010 · Windows · read review

Absolute Games (AG.ru) (71 out of 100)

Мультиплеер вызывает другое чувство — злость. Гражданская война в Rapture — идеальный период для сетевых баталий, а сверхспособности и «перки», открываемые с ростом опыта, неплохо дополняют классическое оружие. Увы, программные ошибки, чудовищные «лаги», куцый предматчевый интерфейс и контуженная система подбора игроков ставят крест на будущем многопользовательской части. Хотя светлым его при всем желании не назвать: уж больно стандартны режимы и непритязателен облик.

Feb 16th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Factornews (7 out of 10)

C'est quand même con d'écrire une page pour résumer ce qui tient en quelques mots. Oui, Bioshock 2 n'est pas aussi réussi que le premier. Néanmoins ce serait encore plus con de passer à côté si vous avez adoré le premier. Rapture est toujours aussi magnifique, on s'amuse toujours autant et l'ambiance fonctionne toujours aussi bien. Les jeux avec un univers aussi original sont tellement rares qu'il serait dommage de passer à côté. Pour ceux qui s'ennuient, il y a même un mode multi mais je n'ai pas eu le temps de creuser la question.

Mar 9th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Gaming since 198x (2 out of 5)

Malheur ! Rapture a vieilli, et les belles balades inondées sont moins sexy quand on ne court pas après Andrew Ryan, ce jeu console est mal porté et cher sur PC, dépassé par son premier épisode à tous les niveaux, et malgré quelques détails qui auraient pû le sauver, il n'en est pas moins un bide qui fait mal au coeur, snif.

Feb 13th, 2010 · Windows · read review

PC Action (Germany) (81 out of 100)

(Multiplayer review)
Die technischen und konzeptionellen Schwächen sind unübersehbar- wer sich aber von einem konsoligen Interface und ein paar Lags nicht gleich abschrecken lässt, wird mit einem ganz besonderen Mehrspieler-Shooter belohnt: Das Setting ist einzigartig, Plasmide und Waffen sorgen für Abwechslung und das (zugegeben abgeguckte) Erfahrungssystem schafft es tatsächlich, mich längerfristig an das Teil zu fesseln ... und das will bei meinem ausschweifenden Spielekonsum echt was heißen! Das Allerbeste aber: Weil die ganzen Mehrspieler-Battlefield-Counter-Strike-1337-Freak-24/7-Zocker dieses Teil nicht auf dem Radar haben, bin ich in den Partien regelmäßig unter den besten Spielern. Das ist gut für mein Ego ... IHR NOOBS!

Feb 2010 · Windows

Rock, Paper, Shotgun N/A

You’ve been a PC gamer for years. The lights of Ultima Underworld, System Shock and Deus Ex still shine as brightly as ever in your mind. You’ll probably hate Bioshock 2 on principle. That’s a shame. It’s a much better shooting game than the first one.

Feb 8th, 2010 · Windows · read review

Gameluster N/A

The improvements to the gameplay along with the expansion of the story and world are big reasons why I really liked Bioshock 2 more than the original, this game is simply beautiful and one that it hard for me to forget.

Apr 22nd, 2016 · Windows · read review

Player Reviews

If you love the original game, you will definitely love this one
by Katakis | カタキス (43228)

The Good
So, here I am, having just finished BioShock 2 when people are still playing the third game in the series. I could have played this game as well, but I had other games that I wanted to play first. One of them was the original BioShock just to get its bad ending. After it was a success, it was inevitable that 2K produced a sequel that has a lot more involved.

You control a Big Daddy known as Subject Delta, at the time when Splicers still roam the underwater city of Rapture. This time, Dr. Sophia Lamb has filled the void left by Andrew Ryan after he was attacked with a golf club, and she plans to make the Splicers her worshippers. Her daughter, Eleanor, shares a special bond with Delta since she was a child, and Lamb is holding her against her will. In BioShock 2, Delta must make his way to Eleanor, while overcoming the traps that her mother has put in place for him.

BioShock 2 has the same underwater setting that the first game had; and the health, vending machines, and other things are the same. The gameplay has been slightly tweaked. There are new splicers to deal with, such as the Brute Splicer (who I likened to the Tank from Left 4 Dead 2) and several Big Daddy variations. Besides the Splicers, there are a couple of NPCs you have to deal with. The number of health kits that you can carry is halved, and hacking has become much easier. With the latter, you don't have to worry about with connecting pipes to the exit. You just need to stop a needle in a certain area. Miss this area, and those flying security things try to take you down.

With the Little Sisters, you still have to kill the Big Daddy in order to get to them, but there is a lot more involved. Unless you want to harvest her straight away, you can adopt them, and this means leading her to what she calls an “angel” and setting her down. You then have to protect her from Splicers while she gathers ADAM. After she gathers two lots of ADAM, you can then direct her to her vent and rescue or harvest her. The animations that plays when either action is performed remains the same as the first game. It is also nice that the Little Sisters in the game sob like a real human being, not let out those ghoulish cries. Also introduced in are the Big Sister who take quite a pounding to kill, just like the other, bigger enemies that you will face. They also look like cyborgs with their glowing red eyes and let out a mechanized yell.

At one stage I fought a Big Daddy while I still carried a Little Sister on my back, and managed to kill him. I couldn't pick up another Little Sister, so I left her standing there sobbing for ages. When I came back to get her, she still sobbed when she was on my back. Surely, this is a bug, but it must be a hilarious one. With the characters, we got to meet Little Sisters, Big Daddies, and Big Sisters. Will we see Little Daddies as well? I highly doubt it.

New plasmids have arrived, any those that were found in the original have also been tweaked. One such plasmid is called Hypnotize (formerly Enrage), which causes enemies to turn against each other, not just splicer. It's always entertaining to watch a Brute Spider trying to bring down a Big Daddy. One of the new ones is Scout which lets you search an area unnoticed and attack any splicers nearby while still being invisible.

Not only do you have a huge arsenal of weapons that look and function the same (unless you upgrade them), but you are also equipped with a drill at the start of the game, and have the ability to carry a weapon in one hand and a plasmid in the other. You are shown how to electrocute Splicers (with the Electro Bolt plasmid) while killing them with the drill. And that's the combination that I used throughout the majority of the game. I made sure that the electrocution lasts by going to a Gatherers' Garden and upgrading the plasmid there.

The graphics are great, having been up to the same standard as BioShock. I liked walking around underwater and ignoring the yellow arrow that directs me to my goal. The loading screen is brilliantly designed, and its main focus is the old-fashioned radio with pictures showing you the areas you can expect. There are tips on how to succeed in the game rather than quotes. Who knew that old-fashioned radios had more than one speaker?

The game still uses licensed songs from the Thirties right through to about the Sixties, and you'll hear them as you make your way through the game. Even the aforementioned loading screens allow you to listen to a piece. Each new area took me five minutes to load, I could have almost heard the entire song. But that's okay, as I could [Alt]-[Tab] out of the game and do something else, then come back into the game when the new areas were loaded. Having said that, I didn't want the screen to disappear. The sound effects are exactly the same as the first game pretty much.

There are a lot more endings than BioShock, and whatever ending you get to watch depends on the treatment of the Little Sisters and how you deal with the NPCs. For example, if you intend to save all the Little Sisters and spare the life of the NPCs, expect to get the best ending. This is the same one that I had. The closing scene has spectacular graphics that are reminiscent to BioShock Infinite. Because of these multiple endings, BioShock 2 deserves to be played more than once.

The Bad
Apart from the long loading screens, I found nothing else to complain about.

The Bottom Line
So, is BioShock 2 an improvement over the original? Yes, it definitely is. Most of the gameplay has been slightly tweaked, but a majority of the Splicers remain the same. Your actions throughout the game also determine which of the several endings that you get to watch. Because of this, this sequel is replayable, because the player can change their ways. There are some multiplayer components and downloadable content that I neglected to mention here, but I will be discussing the latter in another review or two. Is it worth getting? Well, if you are a fan of the original, I just cannot see why you should not like this. It has “superb” written over it.

Sep 28th, 2014 · Windows

Plus 58 player ratings without reviews

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Paul Ryan, Jeanne, Cavalary, jaXen, Caliner, Patrick Bregger, Sicarius, Cantillon, Samuel Smith, Alsy, Tim Janssen.