BioShock 2: Minerva's Den (Video Game 2010) Poster

(2010 Video Game)

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Cavern of Smarts
TBJCSKCNRRQTreviews25 February 2017
Machines need love too. And so, CM Porter(Lumbly, charismatic) tried to give just that to The Thinker, the central computer that runs all of Rapture. Yes, we're still there. Last time, thankfully. But now, it's in the hands of its worshiper and co-developer(read the fine print), Reed(Szarabajka, mad. Easily the dullest antagonist of the franchise). And he doesn't wanna let go. Ideally, you bring it to the surface. It can do a lot of good. That's what Charles Milton(that's what those stand for. Now sit down) tells you. And Tenenbaum(Bobby, caring) agrees. Of course, she's assisting you. Kind of a hobby of hers. "Underwater city in need of saving? I'm there." You're a Big Daddy. Again. Subject Sigma, instead of Delta. This keeps most of the things that BioShock 2 did, you know, better than the original. Nothing meant to be dramatic is unintentionally hilarious. It doesn't have a lot of new content. The returns are handed to you since it doesn't have time to build up. Upgraded firearms don't have to be bought! An Ion Cannon that feels a little obvious, attention-grabby, desperate, y'know. Come back, please! Uh... laser! Everybody likes those! And it introduces the Gravity Well. The reason you get it is contrived: to get through some doors, you need something to throw over a divider that can pull out the magnetic thingiemajig. So you'll need something that sucks. Hard. And it does that. It's fine, it feels showy, an over-baked concept. This took me 5 hours, I doubt I'll play it again, and I could have done it faster. It got pretty bland and boring. The ending(only one, regardless of the moral choices you make. They made the right decision. Of course, given the length, they could have removed it) does pack a real emotional punch. Heck, the whole thing does, even more-so than its core game. And the twists do really get to you, in addition to surprising you. There are further explorations of the characters, and of the new ones. The insulation and loneliness of leaving behind the rest of the world. Coping. The late Pearl(Ricks, sweet) is mourned over.

You move from point A to B, fighting Splicers, who have gone insane from the messing with their genetic code that they do. There are new types of them. The Fiery Brute, who's OK, and the Wintry Houdini. He teleports around. Now, he can temporarily take out of commission anything that, well, moves. They'll leave behind goodies, and you can loot closets, boxes and the like. You, too, can find and use Plasmids, which are powers that your mind can let you send out from your body. Set on fire, electrify, freeze, etc. Tactics come from which you carry and how you use them with the weapons. Shotgun, pistol, and more. You have a Drill instead of a Wrench. I do hope they give you a hammer next. Or let you screw. Let's go through all the tools. There are not many Little Sisters to Rescue/Harvest. They immediately take a liking to you after you killed the only defense they had from this volatile world. And you keep them safe as they get stab-by with the syringe on Angels. You also find that someone tried to do mechanical versions of them, and that didn't work. I imagine we're supposed to be creep-ed out by that. We even get a silly jump-scare attached to it. It does not land.

You also fight the robotic security systems, including cameras that will sound the alarm if they spot you. And Bots. Those attack as you can. This has some improved ones, such as using rockets, and using them feels like cheating. You do so by Hacking them, which you can do to a lot of automated things. Also vending machines. This can be done from a distance, or up close. When you engage it, there will be a readout, with a needle that moves swiftly from one side to the other. You click at the right time, it works out. What you want is green, or even better, blue. If you miss, it may alert if you hit red, or just zap you if it's blank. Comparatively, this is a lot more exciting, less over-involved, and it doesn't pause, so you have to keep on your toes. Unlike simply connecting pipes that water will flow through. Eh, maybe someone at Irrational loved that program when it originally came out. And I get it. Plumbing. And we're in the deep ocean. With metal keeping dry the... yeah.

Dying simply means you re-spawn at a nearby Vita Chamber. It's not difficult to have consequences to that! Most VG's get that right. System Shock 2, which these badly wanna be, did. You don't come back with full health. You may have to spend a while getting back to where you were geographically. And every time you reach a new section, you actually have to find, and activate, the resurrection station, or you'll just plain die. Not return to the previous area. No. You'll just be gone. Why these can't go there, I do not know.

Huh, prior to sitting down to type this review up, I never really looked at the voice cast for these. I guess it couldn't hurt to... Armin Shimerman? Quark? *He's* Andrew Ryan? I mean, the "cruel capitalist with low empathy" comparison is clear, I just didn't believe he could sound that classy. Is that what they mean when they say no one admits that's how they sound when recorded? Yuri Lowenthal, not surprised. Too bad he doesn't have a pouty Persian Prince to play here. Jodelle Ferland? As a creepy girl who has a connection to a parental figure? I coulda told you she'd fit that. At least she doesn't scream the title in this one. Matt Letscher? Good Morning, Miami's Gavin Stone? Man.

There is a lot of violent, disturbing content in this. I recommend this only to completionists. 7/10
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