BioShock 2

Spotlight

VideoMinecraft welcomes you to Rapture

BioShock world meticulously recreated.

VideoBioShock 2: Protector Trials first 15 mins

We take on BioShock 2's new DLC.

BioShock 2: Protector Trials

The splice is right?

VideoBioShock 2 Club pack

No dress code for these clubs, just a strong arm.

Key events

22nd February 2010

First BioShock 2 DLC announced

12th February 2010

Face-Off: BioShock 2

8th February 2010

BioShock 2

4th February 2010

BioShock 2 launch trailer

25th January 2010

BioShock 2 gameplay clips

18th January 2010

BioShock 2 opening gameplay

11th March 2008

BioShock 2 announced

11th September 2007

Zelnick hints at BioShock sequel

Editor's note: Jordan Erica Webber is co-author with Eurogamer contributor Daniel Griliopoulos of the weighty tome Ten Things Video Games Can Teach Us: (about life, philosophy and everything), out this month. We've asked her to write a few thoughts on video games as works of philosophy. Beware: there are spoilers for Soma, the Mass Effect and Fallout series ahead.

Digital FoundryBioShock back-compat on Xbox One: can it hit 60fps?

Original Xbox 360 code shows massive improvement on Microsoft's latest console.

Quite possibly the most impressive technological achievement in the console space last year was Xbox One backward compatibility, a virtual machine that somehow - miraculously - managed to run Xbox 360 titles on Microsoft's latest console. Progress has continued on this brilliant feature, to the point where we reckon it has a good shout in staking a claim as the most impressive console technological achievement of 2016 too. We've demonstrated time and again this year how Xbox One is now running Xbox 360 titles faster and more smoothly than original hardware - but this week's release of the BioShock trilogy highlights just how much faster it can be.

BioShock 2 updated for Steam after Games for Windows Live closure

BioShock 2 updated for Steam after Games for Windows Live closure

Controller compatibility! Steam achievements! Big Picture Mode!

The PC version of BioShock 2 has been updated on Steam now that the Games for Windows Live service has closed.

BioShock 2 on Steam now includes controller compatibility, Steam achievements and supports Big Picture mode. As for multiplayer, you can search for "any game" as opposed to having to select your game mode. DE has also fine-tuned the multiplayer so leveling up is quicker and easier.

If you've already bought BioShock 2 through a different digital platform, you can activate the game activation key within Steam, so you don't need to buy it all over again. Doing this grants you access to BioShock 2, all the multiplayer and Protector Trials DLC and the single-player DLC Minerva's Den.

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BioShock Infinite sells "significantly" more than series predecessors

BioShock Infinite sold "significantly" more copies in its first month than either the original BioShock or BioShock 2.

But that wasn't enough to push publisher Take-Two into profit for the financial year ended 31st March 2012, despite other big successes in Borderlands 2 and NBA 2K13.

More than 3.7 million copies of BioShock Infinite were shipped to retailers, Take-Two's earnings report said, and there was "solid demand" for the game's Season Pass - despite no one yet knowing what those three add-ons will be.

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Editor's note: To mark the announcement of the BioShock Collection - okay, the confirmation of the BioShock Collection after more leaks than even the tattiest corner of Rapture - we're returning to Richard Cobbett's brilliant retrospective on BioShock 2, first published in April 2013.

BioShock: Rapture book release date

The first book to explore the world of BioShock launches next Tuesday, 19th July.

BioShock: Rapture is by science fiction writer John Shirley, published by Titan Books and sold for £7.99.

It covers events from the creation of Rapture to a point before the first game.

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Levine still hopeful for BioShock movie

But the "right pieces" must be in place.

Irrational Games boss Ken Levine hasn't given up on getting the stalled BioShock movie off the ground, but admits that getting it right presents a huge challenge.

Verbinksi explains BioShock movie stall

Studios wanted it to be teen-friendly.

Pre-production on the movie version of 2K's BioShock franchise has ground to a halt after no studio was found who was willing to invest in an R-rated version of the tale, the flick's producer has explained.

2K backtrack on PC BioShock DLC

You will get to play Minerva's Den after all.

BioShock 2 developer 2K Games has gone back on its decision not to release the Protector Trials and Minerva's Den DLC packs for PC, and is currently working to bring all content to the platform.

No Minerva's Den for PC BioShock 2

Protector Trials scrapped too.

PC BioShock 2 users will not get to play the recent Minerva's Den DLC expansion, or the Protector Trials pack, 2K Marin has announced.

BioShock 2: Minerva's Den next week

Single-player add-on for PS3 and 360.

2K has announced that the single-player story-driven Minerva's Den add-on for BioShock 2 will be released next Tuesday, 31st August.

Story-driven BioShock 2 DLC announced

2K Games has announced Minerva's Den, a single-player story-driven downloadable add-on for shooter BioShock 2.

BioShock 2's final instalment of DLC introduces new characters, locations and enemies to the underwater city Rapture, and will be released "later this fall" for the PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. That's this autumn, to you and me.

"Minerva's Den is a self-contained narrative experience that puts players in the role of an all-new character who has teamed up with Brigid Tenenbaum to unravel a dictator's stranglehold on a key district in the distinctive city under the sea," says the official blurb.

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BioShock 2: Protector Trials

BioShock 2: Protector Trials

The splice is right?

BioShock, eh? Moody, thought-provoking stuff. Troubling stuff. Deep stuff, allegedly. How about adding a challenge mode?

Actually, why stop at that? Why not throw in a rhythm action section too? We can get the Puppini Sisters to record a bebop version of Manilow's classic Bermuda Triangle - sample lyric: Bermuda Triangle, it makes people disappear / Bermuda Triangle, don't go too near - and I'll cave a Little Sister's head in every time we get to a drum break.

So 2K isn't being particularly creative in the way it extends the BioShock 2 universe yet - apparently the new gadgets and story content are up next - but that hardly matters. The Protector Trials may not be the most exciting attraction in Rapture (that's the cheap real estate coupled with the fact that plagues, insanity and spreading leaks have really tackled inflation) but it's good for a few hours of frantic action all the same.

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BioShock 2 single-player DLC announced

BioShock 2 single-player DLC announced

First batch: swarm-based Protector Trials.

BioShock 2 will welcome new single-player add-on the Protector Trials on 3rd August, 2K Games has announced.

This has been developed by 2K Marin's core team and will be the first in a series of single-player BioShock 2 elongations.

In the Protector Trials you, as a Big Daddy, must repel swarms of splicers from laying their murderous mitts on your ADAM-gathering Little Sister.

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BioShock film bill "extraordinarily high"

Verbinski cutting costs but not "integrity".

BioShock film producer Gore Verbinski has insisted the project hasn't drowned but is treading water while the team tries to reduce an "extraordinarily high" budget.

Red Dead "sucked oxygen", says Feder

But BioShock 2 not a huge success.

Take-Two chief executive Ben Feder has been crowing about the success of Red Dead Redemption - but admitting that BioShock 2 wasn't quite as big a success as the company might have hoped.

Zelnick: BioShock has "long life indeed"

But 2K Marin may not develop forever.

Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick has said that the publisher plans to "support" the BioShock series and that another developer might be involved next time.

Delayed BioShock 2 DLC out today

Metro and Character packs.

The delayed BioShock 2 add-on, the Rapture Metro Pack, will be released today on Xbox 360 and PS3 (in the US - Wednesday on the European PSN, presumably).

BioShock 2 multiplayer patch soon

BioShock 2 multiplayer patch soon

Freezing stopped, connectivity smoothed.

A multiplayer patch to fix various BioShock 2 multiplayer niggles is "in the final stages of testing".

That's according to a post made by 2K community manager "2K Elizabeth" (caught by VG247)

Bizarrely, that post has since disappeared. 2K Games is investigating.

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2K explains BioShock 2 on-disc DLC

Didn't want to "split the player base".

2K Games has seemingly confirmed that the Sinclair Solutions Tester Pack premium downloadable content is stored on the BioShock 2 disc, arguing that it had to be this way to avoid splitting the player base.

BioShock 2 widescreen patch imminent

BioShock 2 widescreen patch imminent

PC fix within hours, apparently.

2K has said that a PC patch to fix BioShock 2's widescreen issue should be available at 2am PST today, which is 10am GMT.

According to the Cult of Rapture site, this fix was prioritised due to the number of requests for it, and will be followed by a more extensive patch in due course.

In its initial state, BioShock 2 would display letterboxed versions of the 4:3 ratio image when put in 16:9 or 16:10 resolution.

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First BioShock 2 DLC announced

First BioShock 2 DLC announced

Multiplayer additions coming in March.

2K Games has announced new single-player and multiplayer content for BioShock 2.

The first batch of DLC, the Sinclair Solutions Test Pack, will be out in March and cost 400 Microsoft Points on Xbox Live/Games for Windows - Live or $4.99 from the PlayStation Store.

This add-on focuses on multiplayer and boosts ranks to level 50, and also introduces playable characters Louie McGraff and Oscar Calraca. There are 20 new trials to conquer, a third upgrade for each weapon and five new masks.

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No pad support for BioShock 2 PC

2K would need to redesign UI, apparently.

2K has delivered the rather unfortunate news that BioShock 2 PC will never support the Xbox 360 controller as a means of play.

BioShock 2 MP freezing, patch imminent

BioShock 2 MP freezing, patch imminent

Plus: still life in Rapture, says Thomas.

2K Games has acknowledged that BioShock 2 multiplayer is freezing up for a few people and promised to look into it.

"We are aware that some users are experiencing an issue that could cause the game to freeze during the multiplayer component," a spokesperson told Joystiq.

Eurogamer actually experienced this while working on our 8/10 review, losing a good bit of unrecorded XP, but as it only happened once we dismissed it as a blip. Doh.

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Face-Off: BioShock 2

Released a year after the Xbox 360 version, shorn of some of its visual magnificence, afflicted with an ugly blur and featuring exclusive DLC you actually had to pay for despite the long wait, it's fair to say that PlayStation 3 owners didn't fare too well at the hands of 2K Games when it came to the belated release of the original BioShock.

All the game content was there, and enough of the raw BioShock DNA was there to make it a worthwhile experience in its own right, but compared to the original Xbox 360 version of the game it was a disappointment. This time 2K has made efforts to get it right. There's no year-long delay between versions, and on first impressions it seems the development team has done well in replicating the look of the game across both platforms.

So let's kick off by pointing you gently towards a triple-format screenshot gallery, before continuing on to the console comparison vid:

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BioShock 2 PC widescreen and pad issues

Patch on way for WS, latter a design choice.

2K Games has revealed that BioShock 2 PC's widescreen mode is a clipped version of 4:3 and that the game deliberately doesn't support gamepads.

BioShock 2

BioShock 2

Water of discontent.

How do you make a sequel to the illusion of choice? However the developers of BioShock 2 chose to approach the production of their watery follow-up, they were destined to begin just as trapped within the framework of its narrative inheritance as the former citizens of Rapture are within their rusting cage at the bottom of the Atlantic. Such was the power and significance of that defining encounter with Andrew Ryan two thirds of the way through the original BioShock.

BioShock was very much about Ryan - a philosophical idealist who built a city at the bottom of the ocean to house people "for whom work is our wage", where no god or government could find or tax or spite them. BioShock 2 shifts from one extreme to another, exploring the circumstances that drew psychiatrist Sofia Lamb to the city and the role she then played in Ryan's downfall. The two ideologues don't have much in common, but they do both act as catalysts for the events that befall the rest of the cast, of whom you are one, while another is a little girl named Eleanor.

Once upon a time, as Ryan's Rapture fell apart in the hands of mere men and women, opportunists like the first game's Frank Fontaine rose to prominence in search of power. Through their endeavours the population became addicted to genetic modifiers called plasmids, developed with help from a substance called ADAM. As the people needed more ADAM to keep on splicing, so the city gave birth to Little Sisters, fever-dreaming girls escorted by lobotomised bodyguards called Big Daddies, who stalked the corridors of the city collecting the drug from those who perished under its influence.

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2K "scaling back" BioShock 2 DRM

SecuROM less restrictive on Steam.

Having stirred up the usual hornet's nest by posting about BioShock 2's DRM on PC last week, 2K community manager Elizabeth Tobey has claimed on Cult of Rapture that the publisher is "scaling back" DRM on the game.

BioShock 2 PC DRM explained

Infinite installs, limited activations.

2K community manager Elizabeth Tobey has been busy on the label's forums (via VG247), clearing up exactly what form the digital rights protection on the PC version of BioShock 2 is going to take.

Irrational revealing new game this year

Sometime after March, says Levine.

Ken Levine has promised that Irrational's new game will be announced this year, sometime after the Game Developers Conference 2010. That takes place in March, which leaves this June's E3 as a prime time and place for the reveal.

2K confirms BioShock 2 DLC plans

2K confirms BioShock 2 DLC plans

"Pretty aggressive plans" at that.

2K Marin is already hard at work on downloadable content for BioShock 2, according to senior systems designer Kent Hudson.

"Absolutely!" Hudson said when asked if there were DLC plans by Australian Gamer (thanks Joystiq).

"We are working on pretty aggressive plans for DLC and that's actually something that is already under way.

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BioShock 2

Put a shock in it.

Andrew Ryan, the Citizen Kane of the seabed, forever railing against conformity, against predictability, against the things that hold men back from greatness: what would he think about sequels?

Jordan Thomas is a games journalist's dream. He talks a mile a minute, hitting a dozen tangents in the process, but is consistently fascinating and entertaining - even when, as was the case with this interview, he's soundtracked by the alarming sound of a dozen dogs barking from the house next door.

BioShock 2 Special Edition unveiled

LP, CD, artbook, posters, all sorts.

2K has unveiled the official BioShock 2 Special Edition, which is due out "in most countries worldwide" along with the regular edition on 9th February 2010.

2K Marin's Jordan Thomas

BioShock's new Big Daddy suits up.

It can't be easy to follow in the footsteps of Ken Levine. That sharp, manly beard, for example. I would.

BioShock 2

Going deeper.

Sisters are not doing it for themselves. But then, it shouldn't come as a surprise to discover the Big Sister is not the main baddy in BioShock 2 despite what we've been encouraged to think. After all, this is the series that had you take a golf club to its own illusions last time out. If even 2K Marin's press events are a festival of misdirection, surely that's another tick in the "worthy" column for the arch-nerds in the audience.

Take-Two confirms early 2010 line-up

Take-Two confirms early 2010 line-up

BioShock, Payne, Red Dead, Mafia by July.

Take-Two has confirmed that it plans to release four major titles in the first half of 2010. BioShock 2, Max Payne 3, Red Dead Redemption and Mafia II will all see release between the start of February and end of June 2010, chief executive Ben Feder told investors.

"We are continuing to evaluate the optimal release window for these titles and still plan to release all four titles in the first half of calendar 2010," Feder said, according to GameSpot. "At this point, we don't expect any of these titles to launch within our first fiscal quarter ending January 31, 2010."

Most of these games were originally planned to see the light of day in 2009 - notably, BioShock 2 was originally slated for a late October or early November release. Announcing the delays earlier this year, Take-Two said the games needed longer in development and that it was seeking an "improved retail environment" - suggesting that it was one of many publishers running scared from the release of Modern Warfare 2 this Christmas.

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Ed blog: BioShock 2 MP three-way!

The full interview transcript.

Are you ready to go behind the curtain again? Having previewed and interviewed the BioShock 2 team about the single-player earlier this year, this week I got to speak to them again about the new online multiplayer component developed by Digital Extremes.

BioShock 2 Multiplayer

Sister experience.

"When you think about multiplayer, the narrative a lot of times comes from the experience that you create yourself in the match," says BioShock 2 producer Melissa Miller. And while the game's not out until 30th October, Miller's already got a few stories of her own. "I was playing one match and I had a little area I was holding down, I had very distinct entries that I was guarding, and I would see people go by and I'd tag them with incinerate! If they were low on health I'd get the kill."

BioShock to get novelisation

Levine listed as author?

Science-fiction and fantasy imprint Tor, which publishes the Halo books, is to publish a BioShock novel this autumn.

BioShock 2 multiplayer unveiled

Set before the fall of Rapture.

2K has revealed that Digital Extremes is developing the multiplayer component of BioShock 2, and it's set before the fall of Rapture.

BioShock 2

Would you very kindly?

You're a Big Daddy, and you're right, that doesn't sound very ambitious. As Take Two admits during our tour of 2K Marin, a lot of people bought the first BioShock because they thought you were a Big Daddy anyway. He's the guy on the box. He's got eight glowing eyes, JCB hips and a drillbit the size of a fridge stuck to his arm. And the fact is, by the time you got to the end of BioShock, you were so powered up that you practically and to some extent literally were a Big Daddy as well.

BioShock 2: the cutting room floor

Devs talk character design, quest arrows, puzzles and Would You Kindly.

One of the horrible things about going off to see a big game like BioShock 2 is having to cut a lot of the interesting things that the developers say in interviews so your preview is only ridiculously long.

BioShock 2 doesn't drop subtitle

2K submerges chatter.

2K Games has told Eurogamer that BioShock 2 will still be subtitled Sea of Dreams, despite contrary reports late last week. Someone has been telling porky-pies.

BioShock 2 details confirmed

BioShock 2 details confirmed

You're a Big Daddy. They showed us.

2K Marin give you control of a Big Daddy roaming Rapture in the upcoming BioShock 2: Sea of Dreams for PS3, Xbox 360 and PC.

You're not just any Big Daddy though - you're the very first one, and you've somehow acquired the ability to inject plasmids, like Jack in the first game.

Unlike the first game though, you will choose between harvesting a Little Sister for ADAM and adopting her, after which you will have to protect her while she harvests ADAM from corpses strewn around Andrew Ryan's failed utopia.

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BioShock 2 Big Sister confirmed

BioShock 2 Big Sister confirmed

On the cover of a magazine.

BioShock 2: Sea of Dreams will feature the rumoured Big Sister character according to US magazine Game Informer.

Following reports earlier this week, Game Informer scanned in its April issue cover, which features the lithe, rather graceful-looking Big Sister, with a familiar friend perched on her shoulder.

There's no clarification of her role yet, however, and we still don't know who you play as in BioShock 2, nor whether the game is set in Rapture and how it links in to the first game's celebrated narrative.

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BioShock 2 set seven years later?

Teaser site: Big Daddy kidnaps kid.

A new teaser site for BioShock 2 hints that the game is set seven years after the events of the original and involves a Big Daddy snatching girls from coastal towns.

Coming Attractions: Shooters & Racing

What's gunning down the straight in 2009.

After indie and esoterica, sports and music, MMOs and RPGs, fighting and strategy and action and adventure, we conclude our look at what's coming this year with two fields which tend to put refinement ahead of innovation. Can shooters and racing shake themselves up in 2009?

Very first BioShock 2 trailer shown

Very first BioShock 2 trailer shown

Game subtitled Sea of Dreams.

The very first teaser trailer for BioShock 2 has been shown.

The footage is unlocked after completing BioShock on PS3, and shows a 9 or 10 year-old girl (presumably a Little Sister) standing on the Atlantic Coast peering out into the ocean.

A cuddly Big Daddy toy dangles from her hand as the camera zooms out to show a cityscape bursting from the sand behind her.

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Take-Two hints at BioShock 3

Likely to coincide with the film.

Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick has hinted at a third BioShock game, even though the second one isn't even out until the end of next year.

Levine picks his top five games

Admits to WOW "secret shame".

BioShock creator Ken Levine has revealed his top five games of all time, admitting he spends rather too much time playing one of them: World of Warcraft.

BioShock 2 announced

BioShock 2 announced

Due out late 2009.

Take Two has announced that BioShock 2 will be released in fiscal Q4 2009. The publisher's financial year is two months ahead of the calendar year, so that means we'll see the game somewhere in the August-October 2009 period.

Interestingly, Take Two hasn't set Ken Levine's 2K Boston (formerly Irrational Games) to work on this one, preferring recently-formed studio 2K Marin, based in Novato, California, for what's inevitably going to be among the most highly anticipated sequels of 2009.

(Update: However, the company said during a subsequent conference call that Levine would be involved in the game's production: "He will be working on Bioshock 2 and he will be working on a new IP.")

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Zelnick hints at BioShock sequel

Zelnick hints at BioShock sequel

Demo breaks Live record.

2K Games bigwig Strauss Zelnick has said that the two-year release cycle employed for the Grand Theft Auto series could be used for future BioShock titles, GamesIndustry.biz reports.

His comments were made in a recent chit-chat with investors, where he boasted about the 1.5 million sales of the title so far, before suggesting it could become "one of the fastest-selling games in history".

Kriss Akabusi and Cheryl Baker were also on hand to award the game with a record for producing the most sought-after demo on Xbox Live so far - over one million

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