Bioshock 2: Sea of Dreams

Once again into the depths of Rapture.
Reviewed By: John Fox - Staff Reviewer
Content at a glance:

Violence: Blood and dead bodies, and bloody dead bodies, lots of them!

Language: Big Daddy #1 cusses up a storm.

There was once a Little Sister who was very bad,
this made Dr. Tenenbaum very sad.
She hid Mr. Bubbles’s Drill one day,
than the other Little Sisters would not play.
One day she was sent very far away,
and did not comeback until yesterday…

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Bioshock 2 is the sequel to the hit game of 2007. When young girls are kidnapped in Atlantic costal towns by a mysterious figure. Dr. Tenenbaum heads back to Rapture and discovers that one of her old charges, a Little Sister who escaped from Rapture 10 years ago, has for some reason taken over the underwater city. The Little Sister has assumed the majestic persona of Big Sister and started creating her own Little Sisters to once again harvest Adam, bringing the wheels of the city once again on motion.

The player assumes the role of the first Big Daddy created. After being awaken from deep freeze by Dr. Tenenbaum, she makes you a deal. In return for the restoration of your humanity (or what is left of it) she tasks you with saving the Little Sisters and stopping Big Sister. Drill and Rivet gun in hand, you lumber off once again in the depths of Rapture.

Being the first Big Daddy has its perks. You are stronger and more powerful than Jack ever was. You are also more agile than the other Big Daddies, grunt less and don’t make those annoying stomping noises. Unlike your brethren you can use plasmids, besides “Hypnotize Big Daddy”, that would just be wrong.

When the player happens on a Big Daddy he can commit fratricide and slay his brother to free the Little Sister. The Little Sister will happily join you as one Mr. Bubbles looks the same as all the others. You are given four options, “Harvest” works like the last game in which you harvest the Adam slug. The player can also “Hug” and “Pat on Head”, which, as the Big Daddies are not known for their hand-eye coordination, act as harvesting as well.

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New to the series is “Adopt”, you can adopt Little Sisters having them ride them on your back and allowing you to fling them at enemies Pikmin style, causing them to beat on them with their tiny fists. The player can also have the Little Sisters harvest Adam out of glowing bodies “Angles”. This triggers a Splicer attack in which you have to protect the Little Sister for a set amount of time. The Little Sisters themselves are still invincible however. Even the Splicers know that you have to kill the Big Daddy before you can get the Little Sister.

When you kill enough Big Daddies, Big Sister will attack, assaulting you with massive speed, power and telekinetic abilities. Tossing rocks, foreign objects, and even your own Little Sisters at you. If defeated she will flee for another day, you don’t think that killing the main villain would be that easy, did you?

Throughout the game the player discovers what has happened in Rapture during these 10 years through Audio Diaries scattered throughout the city. Through these insane ramblings if Rapture’s inhabitants, as well as Dr. Tenenbaum radio support, you slowly discover the origins of Big Sister’s past as well as your own.

The game also sports Vita chambers, now dubbed “checkpoints” which can be turned off, as well as multiple endings. The type of ending you are heading towards can be told from Dr. Tenenbaum’s tone of voice. For instance, her voice will remain even toned if you are going for the good ending, but if she is screaming bloody murder at you and calling you all sorts of bad names for the innocent act of harvesting a Little Sisters; than you know that you are heading for the bad ending.

The game also is available in a collector’s edition with soundtrack, making of DVD, artbook, and a Big Sister figure. To prevent the catastrophe of last time and to treat everyone fairly, the Big Sister figure comes with a tube of superglue and all the pointy bits pre-broken off.

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Violence:
Rapture is still a disturbing and violent world it once was. Its insane citizens still love bloodshed as much as Andrew Ryan. Frequently the player will find bodies and blood, reminiscent of the Big Daddies’ last victims (sometimes your own!).

Language:
The player speaks in “Big-Daddyish” which is a dialect of grunts translated in game in subtitles. It is amazing that he has a British accent… anyway Big Daddy is quite foul mouthed, but if you have a Little Sister she will correct you “How naughty Mr. B! You should be ashamed of yourself! and slowly turn you into a loving gentlemanly father figure that you were created to be. Also, when heading towards the bad ending, instead of the regular radio conversations Dr. Tenenbaum will shriek and swear at you every chance she gets. Personally, I don’t blame her.

Bioshock 2 like it’s predecessor, delivers fun gameplay, great atmosphere and intriguing story. When you find out that you were being controlled by Dr. Tenenbaum with her Hypnotize Big Daddy plasmid and that Big Sister is your biological child, these are two of the most shocking plot twists in video game history. That coupled with the bad ending in which Little Sister’s uprising followed by their destructive rampage through Rapture are some of the most memorable scenes in video game history. Highly recommended; your Bathysphere awaits.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this Spotlight review are those of the reviewer (both ratings and recommendations), and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Eden Communications or the Answers Network.

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