BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea - Episode Two Reviews
Rambling plot aside, Burial at Sea, Episode 2 is an entertaining stealth-lite shooter with a likeable lead.
While its narrative achievements are significant and Burial at Sea: Episode Two is enjoyable to watch and listen to, it's also fun to play. As with Episode One, its mission objectives boil down to basic fetch-quests, but the stealth mechanics suit the mood, feel well integrated and are enjoyable. It's also a poignant release, for it's not only the concluding part of Irrational's BioShock story but the final chapter of the studio itself. Impressively crafted and polished, it's a fitting end to Irrational's body of work. The story of BioShock might belong to Ken Levine and Irrational Games rather than to its players - but it's a story that's been well worth telling.
BioShock Infinite's final DLC brings brilliant closure to both Rapture and Columbia.
Elizabeth has a stealthier and more tactical playstyle, which is an interesting change of pace
Burial at Sea too often feels like well-made fan fiction
The excellent Burial at Sea - Episode 2 marks a welcome return to form for BioShock Infinite.
Turns out, a good main character and a focus on careful stealth over noisy violence can go a long way toward making a game more interesting.
Irrational also went above and beyond with the implementation of 1998 Mode -- a new difficulty level that challenges you to complete the entire DLC without killing a soul. I never thought the core game's 1999 setting really added anything significant as it was basically the exact same experience, but with even more emphasis on stealth, playing 1998 felt like a whole new game. It was so fun in fact that I was compelled to go back for a second playthrough of Episode Two immediately -- a feeling I didn't experience with the first DLC.BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea Episode Two blows Episode One out of the water. It improves upon nearly every shortcoming of the first outing, and with all of the lore additions it's a must-play for fans of the series. It's worth picking up the Season Pass just to see this story through to the end.
It's hard not recommending episode two for anyone that remotely cares about Bioshock. While we won't spoil the surprises here, the sheer scope of the episode and what it accomplishes with the story makes it feel essential. Even more importantly, episode two is the best kind of DLC by being both distinct and deeply connected with its associated game. If you're willing to invest in the struggling first episode, episode two considerably strengthens this interesting extension of Bioshock's world.
Part Two of Burial at Sea delivers on the promise set out in Part One, and is a fitting close to BioShock Infinite in general. It's become cool to hate on Infinite in recent times, but bandwagons be damned, this is a fantastic piece of content, if a little pricey. You already know you're going to play this if you grabbed Part One, but I'm here to tell you that you won't be disappointed with Part Two.
Sky-high ambition. Incredible visual design and attention to detail. Promise it couldn't possibly live up to. Shortcuts. Pride. A fall.
Burial at Sea: Episode 2 is a perfect send-off for a franchise that defined a generation of console shooters. It isn't without its faults, but the new stealth gameplay is a welcome re-purposing of the tried and true BioShock mechanics. More importantly, Episode 2 is a marvel of storytelling: a careful navigation of the existing BioShock universe that provides new insights into a narrative that was already rich with detail. Finally, against all odds, Irrational stuck the landing, bringing everything full circle as only they could. Needless to say, this is a must-play for fans of BioShock.
BioShock Infinite adapts to stealth with surprising ease, and the art design is as spectacular as ever. Irrational's final release may somewhat lose the plot, but if you've been on board this long you can likely tolerate the incredible leaps of faith it demands.
In the end, Burial at Sea finishes on a much stronger, series-apt note than the one it began on, and it's impressive how Irrational Games drops curtains on its universe with something truly unexpected but wholly fitting. With so many extravagant worlds existing behind an infinite number of doors, you might feel sad that you only experienced two of them. It's credit to Irrational Games, then, that by the end the two is all we needed.
BioShock Infinite Burial at Sea Episode 2, for the most part, is a fitting end to the entire series. It brings everything full circle and connects the first game with the third game. Playing as Elizabeth, you're forced to be more patient in going through the game as well as using some different techniques than if you were playing as Booker. The game crashes were certainly far more than what I've experienced in the past. Sometimes frustrating, sometimes confusing, Episode 2, while not the crowing achievement for Irrational Games' last effort, was a good end and a better DLC than Episode 1.
While Episode 1 doesn't manage to live up the heights of the previous Bioshock games, Episode 2 closes the book on the series that not only extends the world of Bioshock, but also creates the sweetest farewell to a beloved franchise.
While not everyone will be satisfied with the ending, most of our questions end up being answered in one way or another. Of course, this leads to some other questions, but the BioShock saga, at least the one that involves the cities of Rapture and Columbia, is laid to rest at the bottom of the sea. But who knows? With all of this talk about constants and variables, we may yet see another lighthouse, another man and another city.
Boasting a new focus on stealthy gameplay and a fascinating (if convoluted) conclusion, Burial At Sea - Episode 2 ties the BioShock series together in ways both surprising and confusing.
Burial at Sea was a little over excited to return to Rapture, donning a film noir trilby that soon fell off to reveal clunky set piece combover, but Part Two is far more comfortable in its own skin. It integrates the fighty and the talky enough to make Rapture feel a more dangerous and believable place, discards the impenetrable conceits with which the first DLC began, and brings an almost seven year old series full circle and to a satisfying end. What a wonderful trick, and a fitting note for one of PC gaming's best loved studios (as we know them, at least) to bow out on.
The lengths to which Burial at Sea: Episode 2 goes to distance its gameplay from BioShock Infinite's blueprint is outmatched by the indulgent spectacle of its writhing narrative - a risk not fully conscious of its consequences. Through success, failure, and to simply admire the sunset of a generation, the conclusion of Burial at Sea remains a worthwhile experience.