It seems pretty damn likely that BioShock The Collection is now coming to Nintendo Switch (heard through a rating). This is great news, and not just because it’ll give the games a new lease of life ahead of the announcement of whatever BioShock 4 ends up being. I think that BioShock The Collection could end up being the game that has the best first person shooter experience on the platform. I know that’s a big statement, considering that other shooters on the Switch include games like Wolfenstein: Young Blood, and DOOM, but I stand by it for a couple of reasons.
The BioShock Games Have Unmatched Gameplay In Shooters
Right from the very first moments in BioShock, the franchise has provided an unmatched shooter experience. These games were some fo the first that provided an open world for players to walk around, and though the story required them to go in a certain direction, it felt like you could really go anywhere. Furthermore, the openness of the combat in these games makes them feel even larger, almost broadening the world to encompass many different possibilities through many different playthroughs, which of course it did.
The only games I can draw a comparison from are Half-Life and Half-Life 2. These games gave players the ability to move around, talked them through how to interact with the world in a few different ways, and then left them to their own devices as everything sprang to life around them. The BioShock games do exactly the same thing, slowly handing over control to players before removing the safety net and revealing a massive world that they can either thrive or die in. No other first person shooter does this on Switch.
Plasmids Are Insane And We Need More Of Them
If you’re not familiar with the first two BioShock games, a big part of them is about using mutations called Plasmids. These concoctions fundamentally alter a person’s DNA in order to do literally anything, from lighting their fingers on fire or possessing telekinetic powers, to the ability to send a swarm of bees out of your wrist, freeze people to the spot, or even teleport. In BioShock Infinite they were present, but they were called Tonics instead.
Regardless of the name, these powers opened up the games in a way that felt as though it had never been explored before. Granted, games like Deus Ex have similar systems that revolve around augmenting the body, but where they limited the player’s uses of their abilities, forcing them to make a choice in various moments, the BioShock games let players run wild. The fuel for these mutations is abundant in the game, allowing you to summon all the bees you want, blast as many enemies with fire as you can, or just have fun throwing bits and pieces of the world with your mind. The possibilities are almost endless, and the open the games up for many different types of playthrough, such as a no Plasmids/Tonics run, or a run with a specific set.
The story of each BioShock game is fantastic, gripping, and somehow linked to both of the other games. I won’t spoil it, but there is a world that has been created within these games that is so engrossing that it’s a little bit scary. I wonder sometimes how close to reality they could be. If you haven’t finished the games then you won’t understand, but those of you who have played them will get where I’m coming from, and hopefully agree.
Outside of their core stories, the BioShock games are filled with little stories that are almost as good as the overarching one themselves. There are moments to be had that feel precious, something that you’re glad you played the game for. Other points in the game feel hard, like a struggle that you have to go through in order to grow, and really that’s how I’d describe the trilogy, something that you need to play to become more.
These Games Outpace Most Others
DOOM is a game that prides itself on pace. Players are given arenas that have been built around keeping the action moving, and that does make it an incredibly nippy game to play. However, the BioShock games have a pace that’s built on the player. Plasmids open up the game for fast and slow paced gameplay, and so do the weapons and enemies. In BioShock Infinite in particular, you can have some of the fastest experiences in gaming, throwing yourself around in the sky over and at enemies on the ground, who you can shoot and kill just as quickly.
I love everything about these games, if you couldn’t tell, and I truly believe that they would be the stars of shooter games on Switch if they released there. I hope that the rating is real, and that I get to play these games on this lovely handheld console soon.