Ok So long story short I thankfully was completely free the day fallowing my receiving of Bioshock Infinite. As a result I played through the entire game over the course of a day. The fallowing is going to be rather off the cuff kind of reaction. Some people are saying it'll be the 'Ocarina of Time' of this console generation. I say it's the Bioshock Infinite of this generation.
1. The ending
I'm actually not entirely sure what to think of the ending. I do feel that unlike lets say Mass Effect 3 that the game has an ending that is thematicly relevant and hinted to near the beginning. That said as with all time travel stories given the parraell universes nature of the story how can you ever actually keep any of the events of the game from happening if as it was said they have already. Likewise given my basic understanding of multiverse theorem (If you think you understand quantum mechanics you don't understand Quantum Mechanics) Isn't there going to be a version of Booker/Comstock that didn't drown. The ending possibly hints at this after you finish with the credits. Still there's a slight notion of a 'it was all a dream' ending which is probably my least favorite cop out I see bad writers do. I suppose that with the other Booker we see at the very end that something was accomplished IE that Booker never gave up his daughter because Comstock never existed. At least if the child is actually there.
2. Despite Kevin Levines insistence on disliking cut-scenes he still in essence uses them.
There's been a lot of talk and debate about cut-scenes in games. The basic argument goes something like if you take over control of what a character is doing for the player that you are making the player more of a passive participated. The game does do this at curtain points any time you go up to a person press the use key and a event then proceeds to happen. And you know what I do consider that a cut-scene even though you aren't moving the camera out of the first person. It serves a basic function also to me that proves that doing some things for a player is not some kind of failure state. This is not a knock against the game just something I observed in playing it.
3. Elizabeth is an advancement not a revolution (still is impressive)
The first Bioshock had the little sisters and Big Daddies they walked around the world and did their own things despite what the player did. Elizabeth is an advancement of that. In essence Elizabeth is a little sister and your the Big daddy. She's an AI that can wonder off and observ things but has a priority to fallow after you the player if you just decide Screw the plot and run forwards. Cudos for the team for advancing an AI companion absolutely but I feel it would be just about as asinine to not acknowledge that Bioshock and other games have slowly advanced AI to the point where we can have companions that react to more then just the player. For all the flack I think about assassins creed the game series it has given me a sense of being in a crowded street. I'm looking forwards to whatever people can do with the combination of various AI elements in the future with games.
4. RPG elements mixed with Halo
I did find the upgrade system for health, shield, and mana, is kind of interesting to add. It does fell like a stripped down version of what I saw in System Shock 2. The choice to let you have all you Tonics at any one time but two weapons was also a very interesting one in essence you had enough room for experimentation but not enough to do everything at all times.
I didn't quite get as much of a connection to Columbia as I did rapture. Perhaps that has to do with Bioshock 1 being about Andrew Ryan in essence while Infinite is more about the relationship with Elizabeth and Booker. I never quite got the same sense of just who Comstock was (ironic I know, but to me and the plot he is a completely different person from Booker) as I did Andrew Ryan. Once again I think this just has to do with the games focus There was a lot more to focus on then just what happened to Columbia. Last I don't think it helps with the multiple universes Its hard enough to learn about the history of 1 Columbia now imagine 4 or 5 different histories of Columbia. It does kind of screw up the narrative focus at least as far as Columbia is concerned.