Skip to main content

An Underwater Adventure... of sorts

Narrative is an undeniably important part of any modern game.  While it is ultimately not crucial to the game's success *cough Team Fortress 2 cough*, it IS important regardless. Personally, I rarely play a game unless it has a story that seems like it's worth delving into. When I first heard about BioShock, I was admittedly skeptic about it.  But after awhile, I decided to give it a try, and I enjoyed the experience.


Keep in mind - There are no "cut-scenes," per se. Instead, the entire game is seen through Jack's -the main character/the player's character- eyes.  This helps draw the player into the story being presented to them.

BioShock starts off with a plane crash in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, and your character is the only survivor.  However, there is a lighthouse less than 100 meters away from the crash, and after you make your way over to it, there is a bathysphere (this -->) inside.  The player enters it, and it begins its descent into the abyss.

On the way down, an old film reel kicks up. A few moments later, a picture of a man appears, and introduces himself as Andrew Ryan. After speaking for a minute, the player sees a vast underwater city: Rapture, Ryan's escape from society. Ryan disagreed with capitalism, communism, and most other forms of government, so he recruited the top scientists, artists and industrialists from around the world and built an hidden utopia.  But moments after the ride ends, it is quite apparent that all is not well within the city.  The player has a front row seat to a man getting brutally murdered.  After the gruesome scene concludes, the nearby radio goes off, and tells the player to leave the area and get to higher ground.  Jack makes his way to a vending machine of sorts, and injects himself with a vial of goo, which "re-writes his genetic code." This process knock the player out for a good period of time.

This constitutes the first ten minutes or so of the game, and it already tells a good chunk of the story.  The player has to survive in an unknown environment with apparently hostile natives, who have all probably injected themselves with the magic-do-anything-juice, or plasmids, whichever you prefer.  As the player progresses through Rapture, they discover what transpired to bring the city to its current state (SPOILERS: ADAM, the fuel source for plasmids, is largely to blame). The game also leave little tape recorders along the way for the player to pick up and listen to.  These are completely optional, and do not impact gameplay at all, but for those of you who are curious about somethings story, they give hints and unique perspectives about the city and its residents.

BioShock shows that narrative in games does not have to be cut-and-dry, go here, shoot this, investigate that, here is your ultimate objective, go complete it.  In fact, BioShock is a game that forces the player to work off of little-to-no information, which at times may seem frustrating, but in reality is the green light to go out and explore the technological masterpiece that is Rapture.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

League of Legends and Gaming Theory... Unite!

Every time I start to make a post on this blog I think  "What game should I discuss? What is something I want to write about?" and I give myself the same answer every time, League of Legends. Yet I always decide that I should avoid it because Half-Real doesn't apply to League (<---Very wrong), but after essentially looking for any excuse to geek over League and flipping through the book again I realized it could have actually been the ideal example to so many parts of the book, and a near perfect example in many cases. It was as if Teemo had Q'd me with his Blinding Shot and I could not see how this book had anything to do with a no narrative unconventional game like League of Legends

    League of Legends is a part of a insanely fast growing sub-genre of Real-Time Strategy (RTS) games called Multiplayer Online Battle Arena or MOBA's and is currently the most played video game in the world. The basics of League can be summarized by using Juul's three r…

Posthumanist Ethics in Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, Delivered to the Far West Popular Culture Association Conference on 25 February 2018

As is so often the case with conference presentations, these 15 minutes comprise a snapshot of what should be a broader project; there are several papers to be written about the posthumanist ethic that infuses this game. I’m going to focus on The New Colossus’s use of non-human animals as ethical conduits, but first I want to make a brief case for taking this game’s political engagement seriously. Many of you probably remember that when the trailer for The New Colossus was released in early October of 2017, there was some backlash on social media from people who felt personally implicated by the tagline “Make America Nazi Free Again.” 
Tension in the aftermath of the Charlottesville white nationalist rally in August remained high, and to avoid further antagonizing the grumblers, Bethesda could have distanced itself with the old standby “it’s just a game” or even “it’s just a game that has always been about killing Nazis.” 
Instead, though, Pete Hines, the studio's vice president of …

Xenoblade Chronicles: Gamer’s Inside Analysis

The Xenosaga series gave the imagination of a story, with epic action and adventure with a feel of Japanese anime, into a different game that is equally large, if not larger, to the Xenosaga series on the PS2. Gamers that play Xenoblade Chronicles will think back to them playing Xenosaga, if they played any of them, and compare to Xenoblade Chronicles by amount of gameplay, the story, and the entire layout of the game itself.
The story starts on the creation of the world the characters live in, which are two giants, locked in battle, over a vast ocean and under an endless sky. The common denominator is the sea and the sky, because they exist in reality, but it’s clear 2 giants are fictional. One is called the Bionis, and the other is called the Mechonis. Then, all of a sudden, they are mysteriously frozen in time. So, “Eons” later, life and machines rise from these giant titans. It’s clear that the name Bionis has the prefix bio- which means life, and the prefix of Mechonis is Mech- me…