Irrational Games' Ken Levine has said he's "experimenting" with multiplayer in BioShock Infinite at the moment. However, he's not sure it yet holds a candle to the single-player experience.
"We got a lot of questions with the original BioShock saying, 'You're not having multiplayer? It's a first-person shooter - are you out of your mind?'" Levine told The Big O and Duke Show.
"We stuck very firmly to our guns on that, that unless we had something - a multiplayer component that was as compelling as everything else we were doing in the game - we were not going to put the investment into it, because that wouldn't be a service to the product, it wouldn't be a service to the fans and it wouldn't be a service to us - it wouldn't be any good to anybody.
"It's not like people won't buy the game if it doesn't have a world-changing multiplayer element. Unless you're Call of Duty, unless you're Halo, unless you've got something new to say like Left 4 Dead, people are not going to care, so why do it?
"From where we're sitting on BioShock Infinite, we are experimenting with lots of things in single-player and with things in multiplayer all the time. And the question is - and we're incredibly confident now that we've got a single-player experience that is absolutely going to be incredibly impactful on people... We're not convinced of that on a multiplayer side at this point.
"And we're still thinking about it," he added, "but unless we're absolutely convinced, it's not something we would do, because I don't see who it serves."
BioShock Infinite takes place before the events of BioShock, in Columbia, a floating city in the sky. Like Rapture, Columbia was created as an alternate society - in this case a propaganda experiment to show the world how mighty the USA was. But despite the political undertones, Levine's adamant he's not commenting on current affairs.
"What we're interested in here is not a critique of the United States in any way, shape or form," he declared. "What we're interested in is how two different people can look at those founding documents, the same documents - the Bill of Rights, the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence - and come away with entirely different perceptions of what they mean. Different enough that they will actually take up arms against one another.
"That was what was so interesting to us about this," Levine said. "Certainly not about making any statement about current politics or current situation. This is not in any way a representation of what is currently going on [or] a direct mirror of that. It's about a larger theme: what is the purpose of a country? What is the purpose of its documents? How do you have a country of millions and millions of people - are they on the same page about what that country is?"
Eurogamer explored the world of BioShock Infinite last month. The game's in development for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360, and carries a release date of 2012.