previews\ Nov 1, 2009 at 7:00 pm

Bioshock 2 - 360 - Preview 3

The first Bioshock was definitely an experience that no gamer should’ve missed out on. However, there was one element missing that seems to be more ubiquitous than not in the FPS genre, multiplayer. Luckily for you online fanatics, what the predecessor lacked, the sequel delivers in spades. Bioshock 2’s multiplayer gameplay not only delivers all of the great gameplay elements of the single-player campaign, including plasmids and weaponry, but also provides a completely unique setting, taking place during the fateful civil war that tore the city up.

Bioshock’s multiplayer modes take place smack dab in the middle of the civil war that led to the city being sent into disarray prior to the events of the first game. You’ll be able to choose from a group of characters, each with their own specific and detailed backstory, explaining their role in the uprising. These characters are pretty varied, and include a football player, a housewife, a welder involved in the city’s construction, and so on.

Bioshock 2 Xbox 360 screenshots

Once you’ve chosen your character, the game allows you to customize them a bit, changing their masks (should you want them to wear one) and selecting their melee weapon. After this, you’ll be able to edit their loadout, selecting their starting weapons and plasmids. Additionally, you’ll be able to select their tonics, which work like perks. As you play through the game’s multiplayer, you can earn levels and unlock more tonics, giving you better advantages in matches.

The game’s multiplayer modes fit the same mold as other existing multiplayer shooter games, but are pretty varied and fun within the Bioshock universe. Of the modes on display at the recent event, there was a Free-for-all mode, a Team Deathmatch mode, and a newly revealed mode known as Capture the Sister. In Capture the Sister, which is a variation on the good old Capture the Flag standby, you are either charged with capturing the Little Sister from the opposing team and depositing her in a specific area, or protecting her from invaders. The kicker in this mode is that the defending team is given a Big Daddy, with one player being randomly placed in the suit at a time. Big Daddies move slowly, but pack a lot of punch and can take a lot of damage.

Bioshock 2 Xbox 360 screenshots

The gameplay in multiplayer fast and furious, taking the strengths of the single-player mode and using them to great effect in the multiplayer. The addition of combinable plasmids is a great fit for multiplayer, and the frenetic nature of the gameplay never gets slow or boring. There are even some cool new elements, like the ability hack healing stations and gun turrets, and the ability to photograph your opponents after you’ve taken them down, giving you a limited time damage boost against that particular player.

Purists might balk at the idea of the game’s inclusion of multiplayer, Bioshock 2 does a fine job of making the experience fresh and addicting.

Check out the Single-Player Preview

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