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September 13, 2007


Darius K.

According to these numbers, BioShock sold 490k copies on Xbox in August alone. So 560k to date seems at least a little low, as I'd be surprised if they didn't push at least 100k units on the PC.


Re: your last observation - I had a similar experience with Oblivion. If you want to really max out your character in Oblivion (and at first I did) you really have to use every skill in the game at least a little bit. I would never have touched Alchemy if I hadn't had to use it to get my Intelligence up - and then I discovered how useful it was and started picking every flower I found and keeping an eye out for better alchemy equipment...

On the other hand, I hate being forced to do things a certain way in a game, especially if I have already picked a strategy I like. Now that part in Bioshock was short enough that it didn't bug me too much, but I did have that initial moment where I went "Ah, cripes, this is annoying." I think it's dangerous for a game to do that because it can be a step away from a shelf-level event. I think Oblivion's method of tempting you into using stuff you otherwise wouldn't have works better.


I was going to buy the game for the PC. But I got really annoyed with their reported installation restrictions, and decided I will not be supporting them on either platform. I really don't like the idea of having my ownership of the game encumbered with so many license restrictions (especially since I'm one of those weirdos who actually likes to install and play really old PC games... like ones I have to use a DOS emulator for).

I'll buy the PC version if / when they drop those restrictions. It looks like a really cool game, and I loved the demo.


I saw a presentation recently by a programmer who worked on Bioshock. About the resurrection tube, he explained the reason they work the way they do in this way:

They really didn't want to have to reload every time you die because that breaks immersion, so those tubes were a solution for this. Initially, you had to pay to activate the tube for every time it would bring you back up. Problem was, it sometimes put players in a never-ending loop of trouble: the player would start getting short on ammo, so he'd die, so he'd have to pay to activate the tube again, so he wouldn't have any money for ammo, and so on. Making the tubes free solved that problem.

Brett Douville

That last observation was what I wanted to talk to you about! :)


Shock2 did have res stations, in fact that's probably where you got the term from (in BioShock they're called "Vita-Chambers").

They were in BioShock from the earliest days of the design, not something added late to appease the hated casuals. Even imperfectly balanced as they are, it's way better than resetting the simulation, breaking the player's immersion and reminding them in no small way of the game's meta layer.

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Jamie's Bragging Rights

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