Irrational Games’ Bioshock Infinite, the spiritual-but-maybe-not-really sequel to 2007’s Bioshock, won multiple Best of E3 awards last month. However the demo that was shown to attendees was held under embargo, meaning gamers had very little idea just what the fuss was about. Now the entire 15-minute demonstration has been posted to the public, and…well, maybe all those journalists and bloggers were right.
…so. There’s a whole lot going on here. Columbia is populated by various factions, including the Vox Populi, who make things terribly uncomfortable for Booker DeWitt and the super-powered Elizabeth. While characters are seen acting amongst the setting without immediately jumping on the player, when they do things get more crowded and threatening than most encounters in the first two Bioshocks ever did. The “tears” are probably the most intruiging part of the demo, appearing in one instance as a variety of options Elizabeth can help you with during a firefight, and a baffling multi-verse tease in another. Comic book nerds like us are surely speculating the hell out of that moment.
We also get to see how much vertigo we’ll experience while flying along the skylines, and some insight into the relationship between Elizabeth, Booker and the steampunk predator called the Songbird in ways that surprise even at this early stage. If this wasn’t on your radar before, it probably is now.
Bioshock Infinite is scheduled for release in 2012. For some more insight from Irrational head Ken Levine, check out the extended interview with Geoff Keighley on the Gametrailers website, and this interview with Kieron Gillen on RockPaperShotgun.