*Warning this will likely contain Spoilers.*
Now that the whole Bioshock Infinite craze has cooled down now, I just thought that I'd state me opinion on the matter. Boy, I'm sure people are not going to enjoy hearing this at all.
Like a rusted gear the Shock series has continued to move forward thanks to 2k Games and the ever-popular Ken Levine. It just continues to get oiled up so that fans will love it and buy more. I will say that in a way this is somewhat saddening as the series is now looking much more rusted then it should be.
Now as you're reading this you may be wondering what I mean by that, well, the current installment of the series isn't so much of a step-forward in series as much as it is a step back.
Now, I want you step back a moment before you decide to leave, and think about what I mean. What exactly was the main point of the game? It was the story correct? That's the answer you may be thinking in your head right now, while the other answer is the gameplay.
I feel as though there wasn't much of a leap forward, it seemed as though it was trying desperately to cling to it's original Bioshock roots instead of trying to stand up on it's own two feet. We have the title of Infinite which could mean Infinite possibilities yet these are never fully utilized throughout the game. At the beginning of the game you have a Lighthouse like in the original Bioshock, you go to a city like in the original game except it's in the sky. You have the whole "Is it someone new?" In which you get baptized by a priest in order to gain entrance into the city of Columbia.
As you make your way through the city you come upon a fair that is being held, there you gain your very first Vigor, which basically allows you to possess machines and humans! Except with the problem that you can't possess humans until you upgrade it, you can only do so with machines. You also get to the test out Bucking Bronco which levitates your enemies in midair in order to make it a shooting gallery just for you! Of course the problem with the second Vigor is that it's just a watered-down Levitation that makes things easier for you.
I guess you could say that's a problem with the new Bioshock is that it makes things easier for you and doesn't allow for you to get too inventive, which was what the previous Bioshock games were about.
You also don't have to worry too much about preparing yourself for the Handymen as you can only carry two guns and they aren't too tough to fight, unless you happen to jump on the rails in which decide to electrocute you.
Now, back to the fair they hold a baseball raffle in which you get to throw a baseball at a married couple who were tied up, mainly because one of them is of a different race.
Now I would say that this generalizes a point of Infinite in that the people who live in the city are racists. Except another problem rises up in they act really campy for racists like "Ohohoh! Better throw that ball at them sonny because it's a fun game!" This undermines the point and doesn't utilize it too well. Then you have the choice of what to do with the ball, throw it at the couple, throw it at the Announcer, or don't throw it at all.
None of these choices happen to change the game or the story, because as long as it makes you feel like a good person what does it matter? Oh but of course, at least you get a new set of clothes that 'improves' your abilities if you toss the thing at the Announcer.
Honestly, I think that's another problem, the whole clothes mechanic of improving your abilities. Why not give the player something similar to a gene tonic instead? That made more sense then a pair of pants that gave you chain-lightning. After all they already have something similar to Plasmids in this game.
A few more problems arise with our main characters of the game, but to make it easier for now I shall focus on Booker DeWitt. A character who is riddled with guilt and who just so happens kills bundles of people around the city. Oh yes Booker, we're supposed to sympathize with a general murderer who couldn't help but gamble away all of his money instead of trying to get a decent job.
He also sold his daughter who just so happens to be Elizabeth in the game, in order to payoff his debts. But at the last moment he decides "GASP, GIVE HER BACK TO ME." Right after he's handed her over. Now folks, this isn't a character we should sympathize with, heck, he's pretty much an asshole who tries to play off the Anti-hero archetype. Elizabeth realizes this some time after the two escape from the tower and runs off for a while, then she starts to become wholly immune to how terrible killing can be, sometime after they have a talk.
It probably doesn't help that during combat situations Elizabeth isn't exactly a helper, so much as she is a tool to be used by the player along with being a item dispenser. The enemies ignore her like she isn't even there and when she does get shot it doesn't even harm her.
There's also the whole thing about when the siphon in Elizabeth's tower gets destroyed and she gains god-like powers. That is when she is no longer a character and is instead an exposition device who no longer cares about Songbird and just insta-kills him with crushing Air-pressure beneath the sea. Oh yes, now is the point that I mention how Elizabeth takes you to rapture and completely undermines it by making it one of the multi-verse. We get to view how Booker sells his child and how he denies baptism after the war of Wounded Knee. You know, it likely wouldn't have been necessary for Elizabeth to kill Songbird, she could've just gotten her and Booker away from him easily, but no. We had to have Songbird die so we could "sympathize" with him as well, even if we barely got him through the game and never even got to fight him since apparently Irrational still aren't able to make Boss Fights even though they could do so with the Big Daddies in the original one, somewhat.
Now, this is where I shall end my thoughts about the game for now. I shall talk about it more later, until then, I will see you all next time.