DLC Review: Bioshock 2 Protector Trials - Destructoid

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Bioshock 2: Protector Trials

Save the little sister with only the tools on hand

"A" ranked all trials including bonus trials. Default Difficulty

After the dissapointment that was Bioshock 2's multiplayer DLC, here we have the protector trials. The first single player DLC to come from our frineds 2K. Sandwhiched between terrible multiplayer DLC and the incredible Minerva's Den, does the protector trials DLC hold up?

The first thing your greeted with when starting up this DLC is a nice instruction sheet informing you on what the Protector trials are all about. Here's the quick explanation: Protect a little sister from hordes of splicers using restricted weapon and plasmid loadouts. The restrictions can vary pretty wildly from straight firefight loadout of the Machine Gun and Shotgun with Incinerate, to trap focused loadouts the limit you to trap rivets, trap spears, proximity mines, and cyclone trap.My favorite being an all Plasmid loudout that epuips you with several high level plasmids and the ability to heal by standing in water.

I came into this DLC expecting the worst. My first thought was "Great, a DLC that takes one of the worst parts of Bioshock 2 and makes it even more annoying." After completing all the trials one after another, I realized I was wrong. The restrictions in place on every trial will force you to change tactics constantly, something that Bioshock 2 itself failed to do. Where as the main game basically let you pick a tactic and stick to it nearly the whole game, here you will be forced to use strategies you might not have thought of without these set restrictions. This DLC itself highlights the best of bioshock. It shows you just how diverse and frantic the action can be. The gameplay contained here far surpasses anything in the main game.

Bee's and Drills, typical night in Rapture

Included in this DLC are 18 basic trials and 6 bonus trials accoss 6 enviorments. Every level has 3 unique trials tied to it and one bonus trial that allows you to go wild with all the plasmids and weapons availible to you.Those looking for some brand new enviorments to fight through, look elsewhere. All the enviorment are taken straight from the main game with only slight changes and the introduction of health stations and vending machines in every area.

Each trial essentially starts the same way. Tenenbaum calls you over the radio telling you to preotect the little sister while she harvest some adam to use against Lamb. Once you gain control you will most likely survey the enviorment and hack the vending machines to gain a slight advantage over the enemy. Once you put down the little sister to harvest, the fight begins. Soon splicers will pour out from all corners of the enviorment in an effort to stop the little sister from harvesting. Every kill automatically grants you money to use to buy ammo and healthpacks throughout the trial. Every 10 seconds of so your little sister will harvest a little adam and her multiplier will increase. In order to keep that multiplier you must ensure that she is never attacked directly. Here the core gameplay of Bioshock 2 comes into play and you will find yourself frantically killing enemies in the hope of a few seconds reprieve to run to the vending machine for much needed ammo and health packs. At the end of every trial you will be awarded a grade based on how much adam your little sister was able to harvest. It isn't to hard to get an A rank though, so the rating system is somewhat lost in the shuffle.

Bioshock 2: Protector Trials is a suprisingly solid piece of DLC. It takes the core gameplay and uses the arena setting to enhance it, to make it more frantic and fun. You will get about 2 hours of gameplay total with each trial lasting approximately 5 minutes. For 400 MS points, I'd say you can't go wrong.

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