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 BioShock 2 's Finley: Sequel Shifts From Outsider's To Insider's Story

BioShock 2's Finley: Sequel Shifts From Outsider's To Insider's Story

May 25, 2009 | By Staff

May 25, 2009 | By Staff
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More: Console/PC

Creating a sequel within any well-known game property means a developer needs to stay true to the established universe to please current fans, as well as add something new to keep the experience fresh and entertaining.

2K Marin, developers of the upcoming BioShock 2, are in the midst of that balancing act, creating the follow-up to one of the most acclaimed games of all time, 2007’s BioShock. Taking place in the dilapidated underwater city of Rapture, BioShock’s Art Deco universe is one of the most distinctive in all of games.

The most obvious change between BioShock and BioShock 2 is that this time around, instead of playing as an anonymous person who happens upon the mysterious city of Rapture, players step into the boots of one of Rapture’s residents, a Big Daddy.

Alyssa Finley, executive producer on BioShock 2 and part of a detailed new Gamasutra interview on it, said that this perspective change causes a massive shift in the gamers’ perception of the universe, as well as the way that 2K Marin has approached this new entry.

“The first thing we did, and I think one of the key changes in perspective from BioShock to BioShock 2 is that BioShock was an outsider's story. It was about somebody who doesn't know anything about what's going on locked into a place and discovering it for the first time. And you, the player, are discovering it with them.”

“The perspective change for BioShock 2 is that it's an insider's story. It's somebody who exists in this world and lives in this world.”

BioShock 2 lead designer Zak McClendon, also interviewed in the same piece, said that the 2K Marin team intends to create a fresh game with new experiences, but within the boundaries of the BioShock universe.

“Early on, we did have a lot of discussions where people would say, ‘We can't do that. That's not BioShock,’ or, ‘We can't move away from that. That's the core of BioShock,’ trying to come to a team-wide consensus on what the franchise means and what makes a BioShock a BioShock, and what we absolutely couldn't live without.”

“Very carefully, we're departing or adding something new, and striking out in a new direction in a way that the whole team believes in and feels is complementary to the design that already exists there. It's a slow process of trying to get consensus and excitement of what we're going to keep and what we're going to add.”

You can now read the full interview on Gamasutra, in which Finley and McClendon go into detail about following up on BioShock, the formation of 2K Marin, challenges of open-ended gameplay ... and whether or not bees will make a return (no registration required, please feel free to link to this feature from other websites).

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