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Generally favorable reviews- based on 2541 Ratings

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  1. Dec 4, 2012
    It is a beautiful but strange world. Fascinating environment that is eerie, elegant music that is mysterious, lovely children that is under external control, dramatic plot and touching ending depict a unprecedented world in the game of bioshock. Maybe, this is the most artistic violent game, almost all would be "shocked" after finishing this game. Maybe, this is the game with the deepest content. 9.7/10 from IGN really says it all.(My rating: 10/10 absolutely) Expand
  2. Aug 15, 2010
    What's the big fuss about? I played 3hours without havin' one second of fun.
    Graphics are good, I don't like the cartoonish style ( I loved TF2's style).
    Story is entertaining till you understand that youre never gonna meet any characters on your road.
    Environment is exciting first 30min, then I got bored of it.
    Gameplay wise, the plasmids are fun at the first use, then they become boring.
    Gun have nothing special.
    Aswell, it's not linear enough for me, I don't like repeately coming back on my steps lost in those god forsaken tunnels, I was expecting more of a half life 2 'ish feel.
    Worst part is when you come back on yout steps, more ennemies replace the ones you already killed.
    The games main selling point is the background and the gameplay...the gameplay was for me boring, oh I'm supposed to combine plasmids and guns? well... I tried that and it felt fun onece, then the other 500 times it felt boring, I'd rather play serious sam if it's to run down corridors killing the same npcs over and over again with the same methods.
    5/10 and -2 for those who made a fuss about the game, and made me buy it...
  3. Mar 7, 2013
    I bought this game based on the lofty overall ratings. The setting is nice, but I feel strongly that this game gets too much acclaim for the story while the gameplay is only average. In a market crowded by great first person shooters, Bioshock's gameplay is only good enough to recommend to diehard FPS fans dying for another game to play. If you value immersion and story a lot, I guess you might want to check it out. If you value gameplay, you really should check out any number of rival FPS games before Bioshock. Expand
  4. Nov 9, 2011
    2K's "Bioshock" cannot be handled as a game. Sure, the gameplay's solid and smooth, but that's not what makes "Bioshock" a masterpiece; it's the story. Based on Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged", the game's story is deeply immersive, powerful, and frightning. The broad, beautiful visuals overrides the (kinda) muddy textures. Through the eyes of Jack, a dystopian society of greed and corruption is seen underwater. Is man truly innocent and can their crimes be washed away? Such sophisticated question was never asked before in a game, and "Bioshock" answers the prompt back with such epicness and horror, I HAD to give it a 10. GOTY noobs!! Collapse
  5. Mar 19, 2013
    The only reason I do not give this game a 10/10 is because of the frustrating moments near the end of the game when you lose control of your plasmids and the game begins swapping your weapons on you in mid combat, even when not using a plasmid. The feature was downright annoying and managed to turn a great experience into a temporarily miserable one. They should have kept the mechanic to plasmid and not weapon use.
    Other than that one feature, even being over 5 years old, this game felt like it was given alot of attention and was very well played out. Even the obviously outdated 'duel wield swap mechanic' was at least felt comfortable and fluid. The world is exactly the type of bizarre world I love to explore in games, and the story had enough gripping elements to draw me in.
  6. Nov 9, 2011
    Honestly didn't get the hype about this game. Don't get me wrong I enjoyed the story and the setting but the gameplay and overall experience just didn't cut it for me. I didn't think it was bad, far from it, but it's nowhere near as good as the critics make it out to be.The ending is especially bad.
  7. Jul 6, 2011
    One of the best games of all time. It was touted as the spiritual successor to System Shock 2, and while it never quite achieved that, it did manage to become a fantastic game in its own right. I have to say Irrational Games have become my favourite developer due to the care and attention they put into their games. Every moment in BioShock has been polished to a high sheen, the graphics are awesome, the style is unique, the game-play is extremely well balanced and paced between shooting, narrative and other activities like exploration and growing your character. The A.I is some of the best I have ever seen. But most importantly of all for me, is the way you can play the game however you want to. If you like to get in people faces with the shotgun and melee weapon you can do that, or you can stick with rapid fire weapons and high explosives, set traps, go stealthy, use the myriad of plasmids etc. Its just a fantastic and game and so spooky to boot. Without a doubt it is one of my favourite all time video games. If you like intelligent shooters then this is a must play video game. Expand
  8. Sep 4, 2011
    Fascinating story line, interesting take on skill selection, and in-depth social commentary make this a great game. I play games for the stories, and I was quite entranced by this one. The graphics were also incredible.
  9. May 23, 2011
    Things started fantastic, the atmosphere, graphics, sound were great
    then things started to go wrong
    the shooting mechanics are clunky, when you die you go to a deus ex machina chamber, it's too easy and frustrating at the same time!

    Thank god steam does refunds.
  10. Jul 13, 2011
    This is my favourite game, ever. Its story line is so enticing and the eerie surroundings cease to creep me out. for those who think its not scary, play it in the dark on full volume on a huge tv, then in some places, you'll be **** yourself. The game is constantly intense and its very clever. it needs strategy, and skill to traverse the ruined depths. The plasmids are very creative and aid your combat very efficiently especially in harder difficulties. The gun aren't anything special, but they're much more fun once you've upgraded them. My personal favourite weapon is the fully upgraded shotgun; just going round blasting splicers heads off. One bad thing about the game is how its main mascot, (the bouncer big daddy) is only your enemy twice, in the medical pavilion, and in the big daddy training grounds. all the other times it comes as the less scary, "elite" version. A final bad hing about the game is how it is fairly short, it takes about 5-7 hours to complete.. Overall, the game is amazing, it never gets boring, I've completed it 5 times. once on survivor, thrice on medium, and once in easy. you won't regret buying it, i didn't. Expand
  11. Sep 4, 2011
    This is amazing game. Very good Shooter + Nice RPG + Very Very amazing and addictive story = My favorite game :) All in this game is perfect. Sounds, models, weapons, locations..... Really all. I love this and advice You.
  12. Oct 12, 2011
    Just amazing! Quite possibly the best game i have ever played. Everything from the sounds and environment to the combat and story was stunningly well done. If you are in doubt, buy it.
  13. mez
    Dec 1, 2011
    I seem to be way outside mainstream opinion on this one. I was a huge, huge fan of System Shock 2 and I was so looking forward to playing its 'spiritual successor'. Maybe I was expecting too much, but BioShock did very little for me. I feel a bit bad criticising it because it's obvious that a lot of love and care went into making it, and while it isn't a bad game, for me it never got above mediocre.

    It's just a formulaic run and gun shooter. The missions often feel contrived and arbitrary, and are almost entirely based around finding random widgets in some far corner of the level (and there's an escort mission in there as well, ugh). While you're doing that you blast your way through waves of interchangeable enemies - almost all of whom run straight at you - using the usual array of FPS weapons. That's it. For all the game's highfalutin' concept, there's no depth whatsoever to the gameplay - just strafe and fire, strafe and fire. The much-heralded plasmids add very little. They're just guns with different animations. Shoot someone or set them on fire, it makes no difference.

    The setting and story are above average, although the levels all look very similar and the Objectivism stuff is a bit undercooked - it's really just a standard trouble in paradise thing with some Ayn Rand inspired sound bites over the top. The diary tapes add some colour, but for some reason I couldn't make myself care about any of it. I found the twists predictable, and the single moral choice you have to make in the game (whether to harvest the little sisters or rescue them) has no bearing at all on the gameplay, only on which ending you get. It feels utterly meaningless.

    There's nothing terribly wrong with the game and I so desperately wanted to love it, but its lineage can't hide the fact that it's just another bland FPS. I cannot understand what these huge scores and breathlessly uncritical reviews are based on. I almost feel like I haven't been playing the same game.
  14. Mar 17, 2012
    One of the best story lines that I have ever seen.
    However I don't like RPG's.... Anyway, I loved the environment, So diferent, a real diferent game and no a copy. You should play it if you still without know.
    Awesome game
  15. Oct 8, 2013
    Bioshock is a boring, clunky, overly streamlined, and an overall overrated game. It has a great story and would've been great if it was a movie or a book, however it's a horrible game. The game play is dull and un-fun, it's not scary, and it feels like it's stepping on the far superior System-Shock. Once again, Good for a book or movie, bad for a game.
  16. Feb 2, 2013
    The developers at 2K have created something great! Bioshock is an incredible shooter. In the game, the story of the underwater city Rapture, the Adam and the main character is told. You are sent on a journey that you will not soon forget. By the Steampunk style, the crazy creatures and the soundscape, the game has a great atmosphere. Too bad that fewer shooter attach great importance to the individual players and their atmosphere. By Bioshock gets a completely new gaming experience. Recommended! Expand
  17. Mar 28, 2013
    Insanely overrated FPS. The gun-play is poor at best, the shotgun feels somewhat good but the rest of the weapons are disappointing. I suppose this is to force you to use the plasmids as well but they are mostly a disappointment with a few core ones you can use. The environment is interesting but the enemies quickly wear on you, a bunch of psychopaths running around that have somehow managed to survive and just wait for you to show up. The game feels pretentious, and throws a bunch of crap at you to try and seem deep and dark but the story is crap, especially the ending which was a bit of a joke. The final boss fight was decent but way too easy; even with minimal preparation I beat it in one go. Expand
  18. Sep 11, 2012
    Bioshock shamelessly rips off System Shock 2 and does a poor job of it. Insulting, shallow, extremely linear gameplay, backed up by a very poor story, dimly realized characters, a shoddy console interface, and incredibly repetitive scripted events. The final boss fight has to be one of the low points of modern PC gaming. The occasional "wow factor" scripted scene can't cover up a console slog that was dated when it was released. I beat the game when it came out and immediately regretted purchasing it. Judging from the Metacritic froth, a lot of people out there will give high marks to an interactive B-horror simply because it has skyscrapers under the sea. And viral marketers writing fake reviews. Can't forget you lot. Viral marketing rim snoodlers are the bane of the modern internet.

    If you aren't a marketer and genuinely think Bioshock is an awesome game then you simply don't know computer games, because even for this exact sub-genre (Action-Adventure-RPG) Bioshock is poor. Star Control 2 is an awesome AAR. Thief 2 is an awesome AAR. System Shock 2 is an awesome AAR. Deus Ex is an awesome AAR. Bioshock is merely an average game that never comes remotely near the heritage it aspires to match, even as it shamelessly desecrates its corpse.
  19. Sep 14, 2010
    From the greatly positive reception i expected a great game, however i found it nonsensical by the trailers. Well in short: easy, boring, repetitive combat, exploration and mini-game(one kind but you can do it way too many times). There are good ideas in it too, like the photographing and the different effects of some plasmids on the environment but these does not save the game from being confusing and boring at the same time. Expand
  20. Dec 23, 2010
    "A beautiful smooth veneer finish over a flawed, ultimately hollow core" would sum this title up for me perfectly. The setting and overall theme were done quite well, and the conveyance of exploring a now-ruined underwater dystopia is executed very well. To my eyes, that was where the excellence stopped, and the mediocrity begins.

    The story holds up about as well as a cardboard cutout in
    a windstorm, as most of it is told not via in-game events but by picking up random tape recordings scattered throughout the ruins. There was one major plot twist, but by the time it occurs most people would have seen it coming anyway. The weapons, though reasonably balanced, were all pretty standard fare - nothing we haven't seen before. The plasmids, which should have really set the game apart, were only marginally useful save for the one or two strong ones; the rest were relegated to use only for the few virtual stop-gates that required their use for you to pass.

    By the time I was done playing - which, by the way doesn't take all that long - and had followed the cookie-cutter "good" or "evil" path, I left with the feeling that I could have had much more. I think the initial reviews were made by journalists who played through the first hour or so of the game and were really just absorbing the theme and environment. Had they dug a bit deeper, they would have seen the shiny surface give way to the flaws that lurk underneath.
  21. Dec 9, 2012
    The story and setting are alright and when I first reviewed it here (said review since disappeared) I gave it an 8.

    With time I've realised how dull and repetitive this game is (and also how much it depends on fetch quests) so I'm dropping it to a 4.
  22. Mar 10, 2012
    one of the worst fps i have ever played, everything is scripted, the ai sucks, the story sucks, the art is avrage/corny everything takes along time to load and gui is terrible. I want my $ back
  23. Sep 25, 2011
    I do enjoy this game a little bit, and its better than a majority of first person shooters today(which isnt saying much) but it is an insult to people old enough to have played system shock 2(in 1999) I know its from the same creators, i know its getting the amazing story to a wider audience, but the story had been cannibalized, and dumbed down. The rpg elements are dumbed down, meaning that instead of having to think a while before you upgrade, you can just upgrade anything and still be fine. The enemies are similar to those in system shock 2's, the story is the same, even the gameplay is the same, and guess what the first weapon in BOTH games is? A WRENCH! Bioshock has pretty graphics, but graphics dont matter, the gameplay isnt amazing, it's impossible to die, and the allusion they tried to use was not sure what it exactly meant at times. Bioshock is pretty, but a little dumb in the head, system shock 2 is ugly, but its an older game, and there are graphic mods, and it is smart. i give system shock 2 a gold trophy filled with gummy bears, chocolate, and other yummy stuff. i give bioshock the same trophy, but made out of plastic, filled with brown water, and nothing else. Expand
  24. Jul 28, 2012
    I can understand why this game is thought of so highly by others. The world you descend into is fantastically engrossing, with perfectly executed period music and decorations. The story is a good, the graphics are decent, and the gameplay is fun enough.

    But everything is ruined for me by one thing - those darn vita tubes. Basically there are tubes dotted about all over the levels and if
    you die you are respawned at the last tube you went past. The problem with this is that whatever damage you've dealt out to the enemies stays with them, so you don't lose anything from just dying over and over again until you finally defeat your foes. This makes a mockery of the whole game; you might as well attack the hardest enemies with your wrench and save your ammo because you'll just respawn with no negative effects.

    This takes away all the suspense and fear from the game. Add to this enemies that respawn at random, a lack of weapons that are hideously balanced (a powered up wrench better than a shotgun?!), and a system of augmentations that don't really help all that much, and this is a game with so much potential and so much right that falls short of where it could have been.
  25. Jan 11, 2013
    After Doom and Quake followed some decent first person shooters over the years. Some managed to bring something innovative to the genre. Not Bioshock.

    Clearly, Bioshock is an over-hyped title artificially pumped by a generation of console gamers with nothing better to play at the time. The PC version was like a bowl of oatmeal: Entirely unmemorable, borderline unpleasant.

    I forced
    myself to play through a few levels and the mediocrity of it all quickly forced me to uninstall before the critical 1 hour mark. When a game makes windows tools like defrag feel fun and exciting, it's not a very good game. I'm sorry I wasted 20$ on this. It taught me never to listen to hype ever again!

    In short: One of the worst "me-too" FPS games ever. Avoid.
  26. Apr 25, 2013
    I played for 4 hours and stopped playing. I'm not a big fan of FPS but I loved Bioshock Infinite so I wanted to try this one. Big disappointment.

    There is no atmosphere or charm whatsoever, it starts out like a survival horror, and I liked that, but that feeling goes away very quickly. Then it feels like a grey post apocalyptic world that I've seen many times in other games. The city of
    Rapture is boring. The lack of music also brings down the atmosphere.

    The plot is intriguing, and I wanted to know more about what the hell happened, but the characters are just so dull, I never felt any emotional connection to anyone. The character you play doesn't speak, it's like I'm controlling a robot or something, so I just don't care about him, I don't even know his name.

    The graphics are nice, with plenty of detail, but everything is so grey that it doesn't matter.

    Also this game doesn't like Windows 7 64 bits, I had plenty of problems before I could play this game decently.

    Gameplay is ok, you have many weapons and plasmids, and you shoot people. But the enemies repeat a lot, and they aren't that much fun to fight. The hacking minigames are pointless and annoying, the upgrades and rpg elements are not very interesting.

    So I guess I was entertained for 2 hours, and the other two hours I was expecting it would get better... it didn't
  27. May 11, 2013
    Maybe it's because I over-hyped this game in my mind, or maybe it's because I waited to long to pick this up, but I did not have fun with this game. The levels look exactly the same, and it's incredibly cramped. There's not much strategy when it comes to combat, and the enemies look identical to one another. The hacking system is repetitive, and the harder hacking levels are literally impossible (as they allow no path) unless you have an item. The storytelling and it's method appreciated, and the details in the music/fx are stellar, but that's all the compliments I can honestly give this game. Expand
  28. Nov 7, 2010
    I'm glad I bought this for only $5 on Steam. Any more than that and I would have felt ripped off. Great graphics, theme, setting and all but the game was just too repetitive and boring. It reminded me of an old arcade game but with a bit more depth added to it. Lame puzzles, the same enemies over and over, linear etc...

  29. Apr 4, 2012
    Simply put an amazing game. This is the first FPS game where I actually enjoyed the story and wanted to see it through. Most FPS out in the market are focused on multi-player or some gimmicky mechanic but they don't really care about story. Bioshock is utterly different. From its throwback 1920 look and feel, to its eerie music, to its amazing story-telling system of sound recordings, this game was revolutionary. Speaking of story, the one in this game is a VERY interesting look at the idea of government/collectivism vs individualism taken to the extreme.

    I never knew a 1-player FPS could be so fun!
  30. Jan 24, 2012
    One of the best shooters I have played.

    I don't play many shooters, they just don't interest me, but Bioshock, with its disturbing world, nice story, told through audiologs, and a radio, and great use of conventional weapons and the plasmids, made a deep experience that offers much more than your standard shooter.
  31. Nov 9, 2011
    2K's "Bioshock" cannot be handled as a game. Sure, the gameplay's solid and smooth, but that's not what makes "Bioshock" a masterpiece; it's the story. Based on Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged", the game's story is deeply immersive, powerful, and frightning. The broad, beautiful visuals overrides the (kinda) muddy textures. Through the eyes of Jack, a dystopian society of greed and corruption is seen underwater. Is man truly innocent and can their crimes be washed away? Such sophisticated question was never asked before in a game, and "Bioshock" answers the prompt back with such epicness and horror, I HAD to give it a 10. GOTY noobs!! Collapse

Universal acclaim - based on 44 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 44 out of 44
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 44
  3. Negative: 0 out of 44
  1. A dark and astonishing masterpiece...I spend my career, and my gaming life, waiting for a moment when a game just astonishes me, when I can't believe what I'm seeing, what I'm doing. BioShock has five. [Sept 2007, p.66]
  2. 100
    The hours spent playing this masterpiece were the perfect encapsulation of why videogaming is such a favourite waste of time for so many of us. Thrilling, terrifying, moving, confusing, amusing, compelling, and very very dark. BioShock isn't simply the sign of gaming realising its true cinematic potential, but one where a game straddles so many entertainment art forms so expertly that it's the best demonstration yet how flexible this medium can be. It's no longer just another shooter wrapped up in a pretty game engine, but a story that exists and unfolds inside the most convincing and elaborate and artistic game world ever conceived.
  3. 97
    There is art here, despite what many would say isn't possible with games, from Roger Ebert to game designers like Hideo Kojima... BioShock stands as a monolithic example of the convergence of entertaining gameplay and an irresistibly sinister, engrossing storyline that encompasses a host of multifaceted characters. This is an essential gaming experience.