Bioshock Infinite ReviewGuest_Jim_* -
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Story (99.9% spoiler free, but a spoiler substitute can be added, upon request):
I used the same joke for the Borderlands 2 review, and sadly it will be much harder to live up to with this game. Bioshock Infinite is so story driven that almost any discussion of the story requires divulging something one may consider a spoiler. I will do my best to avoid anything critical, but that 0.1% may still exist.
As already mentioned in the review, revealed prior to release, and expected based on the previous two titles, the story is set in an attempt at science-derived Utopia. Here the city still stands and is not overrun by the equivalent of Splicers, Big Daddies, Little Sisters, etc. The leader of the city, Father Comstock, controls the city in part through propaganda and indoctrination, using tools such as the 'Dimwit & Duke' show, which is an obvious reference to 'Punch & Judy,' but with less bludgeoning. Also Comstock and Columbia are shown at many times to be racist.
You play as Booker Dewitt, a private investigator with an unhappy past, seeking salvation. Towards that end, you are sent to find Elizabeth, the woman shown in the trailers. As the game progresses, you learn more about these three's pasts through campaign exposition and collectibles.
You will also meet and learn about the past of multiple secondary characters. Some of these are only present for an hour or so, but one pair, the twins Robert and Rosalind Lutece, are found throughout the game. (I prefer to call them Alice and Bob.) While most of these secondary characters exist only to reveal the past and drive the present (the point of secondary characters), Alice and Bob also provide some assistance. Think Merlin from Arthurian legends and you'll get the idea.
With that being said, all of the secondary characters have a definite purpose within the story, and the experience would be vastly different without them. The plot points they serve are critical to the story, so as you play, you would do well to pay attention to them and remember them.
Overall the story is exceptional. I could name a book which could have influenced the development of Infinite, but that could spoil some of it. Let's just say that if you start playing Infinite, failing to finish it is a disservice to yourself. Though I have not had time to confirm this theory myself, I have read that this game has only one ending. While I believe this shortcoming is a little unfortunate, I would not consider it a strike against the game. Even without multiple endings to unlock, I would still suggest playing this game at least twice to best appreciate the intricacies of the story.
One final note about the story: it does answer why the game is called Bioshock Infinite, in case you were curious.