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Extended map of Arcadia

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TeaGarden

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Revised Level Maps : (Click To Enlarge)



Arcadia 0

Level 0




Arcadia 1

Level 1




Arcadia 2

Level 2




Arcadia 3

Level 3



Map Diagram Color Key :
  • Light Beige - accessible floorspace from in-game
  • Black - Structural walls (reinforced concrete - primary watertight structure) 
  • Dark Grey - bulk foundation concrete (built ontop/into seabed rock)
  • Orange - Additional space within given structural walls (not visible in-game) - including many utility space (ie- sumps at lowest level)
  • Green - Continuations of a floor level (implied by a door or windows or blocked passage/door or similar stacked floors)
  • Blue - Ocean Water areas (water contacting exterior surface)
  • Brown - Seabed  and some interior structures like banister rails/outlines of furniture/machines
  • Red - Atlantic Express tracks, doors and airlocks, some machinery/pipes/cables/conduits
  • Yellow - Stairs/steps/elevators/access shafts (paths of level changes)
  • Light Blue - Window 'glass'
  • Purple - Blocked doors and passages (in-game)


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DLC MultiPlayer level (as original) :




ArcadiaMP map

Upper




ArcadiaMP map lower

Lower


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Orientation of this map is based on the connection to Smugglers Hideout coming from the West (and relative positioning of the city clusters on the Austen Bathysphere map).


Fixes :

Map inaccuracies with changes of floors not being consistant for what a conventional mapping scheme would show - now arranged on correct levels. Some maps have offset levels which have been plotted for maximal continuity where alternate layout plotting was possible.

Curved Ceiling Window above the ticket booths isn't fitted to the room correctly (so far off you see the ocean directly out of the gap... sloppy).

Window looking out on wide open ocean and immediately adjacent in that direction is the original Saturnine caves (the window view SHOULD look at a seabed hillside). Walls thickened and scene adjusted.

Made the Standard process/mutation of making the building's main exterior structure more monolithic (simpler and structurally stronger) and having the walls/support columns match that needed by supporting the typical Rapture outside water pressure.

There were no restrooms for the original Arcadia map, so I've added several sets, including for employees. Added the usual 'behind the walls' utilitiy spaces and extra employee areas. Added various additional stairs and elevators.

Window views making the viewer's position look to be up 20 floors against nearby buildings, while in other sections large rocks (which should be on the seabed) are right outside the window. Most game levels are actually squat and sprawling, and it would be strange/illogical to have 20 floors below them when there is no indications of ANY lower floors for the floorplan ... The MMORPG would have real (accurate) outside views (and terrain contours), as you would be looking at another REAL modeled part of the city/landscape (and anyone swimming by). The Buildings seen through windows generally would not be as tall/have as many-floors/be narrow as those original 'impressive' game views (which are there merely for 'show' -- and only considered a minor detail).

When Just entering the viaduct to Langford's Research Labs, look back at the building you just came from and you see a wall with windows when there are none on the immediate interior walls (where you just came from). Minor detail for a 'shoot-em up' game, but not proper consitancy for a MMORPG).

Window in Upper Rolling Hills (just inside its entrance) is not well placed requiring an open sea behind it that is VERY close to the block of seabed which is supposed to have one of the Saturnine Caves within it (you really don't want THIN rock/seabed walls (mortared together no less) with 280lb per square inch pressure on the other side of them if you want to stay alive). The Usual interior/exterior conflict left by the level developer.

Note that some of the Sliding Doors slide INTO the rock walls - indicating the wall IS fake (the door slot and mechanism are behind a thin simulated cut rock/mortared wall).

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Modifications:

Note - as mentioned elsewhere (for other maps), the foundation concrete (grey) has alot of large chunks of rock filling out its volume to save on the cement/concrete being required. The solid foundation mass is largely there to solidly anchor buildings to the seabed rock (and to fit/secure the prefabricated building sections into seabed holes/excavations dug not too perfectly/precisely).

Likewise lots of utility spaces/accesses and staff areas/facilities (preferably well hidden from the parks customers) have been added. Lots of nooks and crannies for the MMORPG, where the most interesting things are often 'out of sight'.

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The Bathysphere Station has (by me) mutated into a three-holer Station to handle the multiple routes (actually more than three routes - see the Rapture Metro Map) that converged at Arcadia (to facilitate transfers between routes). The seperate 'exclusive' "Deluxe" section of Arcadia was reserved for the more affluent Citizens (who could afford to take the Bathyspheres), and who might rather not rub shoulders with the noisy 'common' people. Since the Bathyspheres are shown to go down (submerge), then there must be tunnels below which lead to exit points in the direction of the destinations (and have to clear the buildings blocking the path and burrow through whatever seabed is in the way). Actually, the three docks (holes) can each allow a Bathysphere to come/go to any of the destinations (even with my Cable-based System - the hub mechanisms are on a level well below), and the number of 'holes' actually reflects the large amount of traffic which goes through this Station.

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You (in BS1) emerge from a crypt door that is the secret connection to the Smugglers Hideout, which is a good part of a mile away from Arcadia (according to the Bathysphere System Map). A simple utility-type Tram track (circa 1850s technology) or even some kind of overhead rail would make moving the bulk of the smuggled goods much easier. Such a system would match the complexity/scale of infrastructure we see in Smugglers Hideout in BS1 (it is shown even larger facility on the DLC MP map). The smuggling Tram has been added and includes a further extension on towards Farmers Market (a good place to transfer alot of Contraband with the Trolley station being right there). With all the things added, the map is becoming quite a 'warren' which in real life is what cities are like underground. It is possible that while the 'Caverns' in Arcadia were built, that the excavation for the smuggling Tram was also done, giving cover to the activity. The actual construction for the 'Smuggling Tram' was a rough cut tunnel (plasma cutters), reinforced with prefab wall sections and backfilled with concrete to seal it sufficiently - this standard method was used countless other places in Rapture. Like most other construction, it would seep water slowly and a drainage channel/catchment would be integral to its design.

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Arcadia should be much larger than the caricature we see in the Solo games (even if incorporating the Multi-Player map). It should be more than some temporary shopping mall 'nature' themed presentation. There should be (as advertised) diverse 'vacation' environments, and space for people to FEEL like they are a little bit in nature (instead of in a bottle at the bottom of the ocean). There are seen (in-game) fewer trees than you would actually expect, and the prevalant decoration is vine covered rock. The place is so subdued/dark, that I wonder if during the 'closed' hours large hidden floodlights don't shine on the plants to keep them healthy.

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The Main Entrance to Arcadia is on the Farmers Market side (obvious by the big ticket booths being there), but the Bathysphere Station from Fort Frolic does not have a similar arrangement for the people who usually take those expensive Bathyspheres. They must have prepaid tickets, and a Park Attendant to welcome them from that entrance. An Elevator (and stairs) is nearby which will whisk these upclass nature lovers to the top level where the restful Waterfall and 'Deluxe' Arcadia's Glens begin.

The Trolley Station, being for lower fare transportation, connects near the Main Entrance (for the ordinary customers). The Trolley Station itself is on the Farmers Market map.

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I've Added the original AE Train Station for Arcadia (a Mk1 Track upon the old North-South construction mainline, used to build Phase 1 of Rapture). The Line was built quite early when nearby igneous rock which was used for concrete Aggregate (the same rock the Farm tunnels are built into throughout this whole section of the City.) The Station has an atypical curved track airlock to make the 90 degree turn just before entering the Station. The Mk1 tracks could make tight turns like that because of the shorter cars and single car trains, which enabled that track system's routes to go around obstacles (for originally quicker and cheaper construction).

The AE Stations main floor is below map level 0, but sticks up with a high ceiling into level 0. A viaduct from adjacent buildings crosses over the tracks. So NOT being shown is the Station's lower(main) level (similar to others we saw in BS2), including a connecting passage to the Arcadia entrance (a major destination for passengers) just in front of Professor Langford's Research Laboratories (The Metro entrance is just beyond ...).

The newer Mk2 Atlantic Express Station (which has much larger traincars and allows 2 car 'trains') runs right through the center of the map. Note how looooong the total Station is because of the airlocks at either end. The route also goes straight into the side of the 'hill' directly in the route's direction, instead of going around the hill like the first/earlier AE line does. These MK2 AE Station airlocks were a bit different from the typical ones because they are glass-windowed most of their length (and thus more expensive - their added expense was avoided on most other Stations).

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This (Arcadia) expanded level map shows how extensive the Cavern system in Arcadia actually was. The 'Saturnine' caves we see get to see were just the entrances to the larger network of caves, which (being fairly large) became a popular attraction in themselves. A few existing natural caves/voids (lava tubes) were found when Arcadia was being built, and were added to more-than-a-little by artificial means (many tunnels were too small/rough for easy passage). It was not that the rock was easy to dig, but that it was a fairly solid block of strong rock able to be sealed and support the external sea pressure. Those natural caverns and additional passages made for an unusual/interesting environment (perhaps after leaving its confined space the rest of Rapture looked a bit less claustrophobic). Some cavern formations were added to resemble famous caverns of the Surface World (sprayed concrete (gunnite invented 1907) can be textured/colored to make some convincing rockwork).

The caves had the nickname of "The Colossal Cave" for some reason, even though the twisty little passages aren't that voluminous or confusing.

Fake Dinosaur bones would be placed in the caverns (fake ones placed as an 'attraction'). Animatronic dinosaurs and cavemen were probably planned, but were abandoned because of the Civil War.

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Arcadia is located on the edge of a huge chunk/formation of stable igneous rock. which led to alot of farming tunnel-construction to be done nearby -- where Raptures REAL farms are). Rock tunnel construction was done using the efficient Ryan Industries plasma rock cutting technique, which was used to seal the original volcanic rock of Arcadia's caverns, AND to cut most of Rapture's foundation excavations. From this, one entrepreneur later got the idea of building underground Suburb communities outside of Rapture City Limits (yes, an underwater Levittown) when City expansion was needed as the population increased.

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Ive added a 'Deluxe' section to Arcadia which is reserved for the more 'well to do' visitors, and has a much more contiguous/linear downward surface/path with larger waterfalls, higher ceilings and a less cluttered layout. (The DLC Multiplayer map level just did not fit well, and would have been unimpressive/repetative). The original Arcadia map's "nature" areas were a bit too disorganized to be properly aesthetic. The Story would be : They were appended/shoe-horned-in to Arcadia to handle the more common folk's 'nature' needs. This lesser area frees up the 'Deluxe' grounds for garden parties and other social events. It is all still covered by similar fake rock, shallow cut stone, carefully placed plantlife/ivy, shallow babbling brook waterways, thematic building fronts, and such -- all intended to give the impression of a relaxed natural environmnet.

An elevator whisks visitors from the Bathysphere Station directly to the 'Deluxe' entry way - with its enchanting large waterfall and extended tree lined parkway.

Near where you see all the 'Who is Atlas' propaganda posters there is a portal that now leads to the 'Zoo', but there is a second portal immediately next to it that now goes to a stairs leading upto the added Veranda Restaurant.

The Ceiling Windows in Lower Rolling Hills got in the way of the Deluxe Area additions (above that area). I have retained them EXCEPT that they now look into the floor of "The Pond" on the level above.

You might notice that many of the areas Ive added don't have that many windows. Why would someone come to Arcadia to see big windows viewing the Cityscape, when they came to see plants and 'nature' ???

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Added - "The Bayou" is a boat ride thru a simulated mangrove swamp (ever been on Pirates of the Caribbean at Disneyland ?) It is reached via a collapsed passage off to the left of the entrance to Langford's facility (you can see the opening there, and a high ceiling beyond). It has skiffs and poling barges which take visitor/customers along a 1/4 mile length water circuit. No skeletal pirates are to be seen (at least not until the Civil War started, maybe) to inhabit some of the ramshackle false front 'quaint' buildings. The passengers get glimpses of some of the (original Saturnine) Cavern scenes from their boats, as well as ALOT more now. The construction extends into larger cut tunnels through the local bedrock around the 'caverns. area.

Open water requires treatment to keep it from turning into a slimey stinky mess - so added is a filtration/conditioning system/facility, which removes organic matter from the Bayou ride's water (and processes it to be Mulch fertilizer used to maintain Arcadia's plants elsewhere).

The 'Canal' in the original plan was unfortunately at a different level, and thus couldn't connect with the Bayou waterway. It can still offer a shorter experience of drifting (on skiffs) through the midst of Arcadia's vine covered walls and rustic stonework (parts ceiling'd with the wooden walk above) and maybe some fake Venice-like architecture (nothing says "Romantic" like floating through a Medieval sewer...) It has been expanded a little with two paths : One gentle (flat), and the other with a short (small) simulated rapids section (which had been located at that spot where the water level changes (a dammed up drop now). Maybe if the passengers were drinking enough, going through what amounted to a concrete tunnel of vegetation would seem somewhat "natural" (and be allegedly restful -- that's at least what the Advertisements said.)

Added some big fresh water reservoirs (tanks), down in lower level, to store water for the various water attractions. No doubt there would be alot more filtration and cleaning systems needed to keep all of Arcadia's waters from becoming noxious.

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These Maps show various Adjacent Building seen from the level's windows. The 'Zoo' has been added in one of those adjacent 'generic' buildings you see. Often the devs had those stand-in caricatures of buildings as 'mood setters' to indicate that Rapture is a City. With Rapture's 20000+ people, the space needed for them to reside/work/play/transportation/resource production is pretty good sized, even with alot of dense vertical construction (but NOT quite as vertical as shown : ie- some are 60 story buildings if you count the rows of windows). Unfortunately some of those building just look like they are hanging in place (Level Dev didn't add a seabed for them to sit on - a little more detail down their might have been interesting).

"The Zoo" Topiary Garden and Camp Grounds - another one of Ryans's ideas -- as the subject for the Topiary Sculptures is 'Parasites', and children camping with their parents amongst them in the dark would be left with very definite impressions. (Also there's no real menagerie of difficult and expensive animals that would need to be maintained and constantly replaced).

The Rapture "Zoo" of Parasites (a topiary garden) is combined with an overnight camping area. A few topiary subjects featured there are :

  • Lawyer "the middlemen who only obstructs, consumes and adds nothing"
  • Religious Patriarch swimming in Wealth (the pretty gold flowers were a nice touch)
  • Fat Politician selling Welfare and Pork
  • Union Thug, 'sitting on a shovel', degenerating labor to its least common denominator.
  • Communist Commissar dispatching a Victim (a scene from Ryan's own life)
  • IRS Agent (with very pronounced sharp bloodsucking teeth)
  • Beatnick Wastrel, the unoriginal poseur / 'do-nothing'
  • Petty Bureaucrat with his hand out for a bribe
  • King (drooling idiot) with bowing/scraping subjects
  • Leftist Academic haughtily ridiculing a common man
  • Welfare Hound (the opposite of the 'dog faced boy').
  • The Big Tick attacking the Great Chain (The Big Tick was a cartoon villian seen in some Rapture-made childrens cartoons)

The 'Zoo' structure itself with its 60 foot vault ceiling (with no interior pillars to clutter the space), allowing equally tall trees, was uncommon in Rapture with only a few other clear uninterrupted volumes which could match it (the Stadium dwarfed it though).

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Added - a School of Forestry and Agriculture in Langford's building (upstairs), an important component of Rapture's basic resources. Tours of the Forestry and Agricultural College are regularly given, and visitors (and school children) are shown the various advancements that allow Rapture to eat and breath.

Added - Rapture Horticultural Manufacturing Ltd. - a provider of scientifically engineered hydroponic farm machines and products. A side business of Langfords's in partnership with Ryan, which built many of the farm units throughout Rapture. It manufactured hydroponic systems equipment, seeds and growth medium.

Added Langfords "Sea Farm", agriculture research area growing Kelp (with signs visible from AE...)

Added 'Farm of the Future' exhibit of a hydroponic tunnel farm (attached to the agricultural college above the hidden Tram level). Rapture's farms were largely automated hydroponic systems which took advantage of the cheap power from Hephaestus to continuously grow foodstuffs at a high density using artificial light. Oxygen produced by the plants was a byproduct that eventually was 'sold'. A 20+ foot wide&high tunnel would be driven thru solid rock (using Ryan-technology plasma cutters/rock-melters) and lined with reinforced concrete, and the pre-fab 2 floor levels containing rack upon rack of hydroponic growing trays. Growing conditions could be carefully controlled to maximize production at efficiencies magnitudes more than Surface cropland. Miles of these 'farms' were eventually built in Rapture to feed the initial and growing population.

This 'Farm of the Future' exhibit was part of the Tours given by the Forestry and Agricultural college, and was sponsored by Rapture Horticultural Manufacturing Ltd.

My Persephone maps (for example) have their own network of Farm modules (to make the inmates more 'self-sufficient' ("Pay their own Fare" as Sinclair put it) and to cut costs - the Penal complex included Rapture's Jails, so many people there were not ADAM-insane and capable of labor).

Added - A Heat Pump Station (Hot water from Hephaestus) - multi floors down below level 0 (into Basement level not shown on this map set). Level 0 has many pilings supporting the level above amongst the cavern tunnels.

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In-Game Secret area (near the first U-Invent machine) under a low portal in the water - split level of map makes it hard to indicate. Mechanism are now there for 'water flow' of Arcadia's 'Canal' attaction.

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As with all the other maps, you will notice there is usually a layer of the filler cement (dark grey) between the reinforced structural walls (black) and the seabed/bedrock (brown). This is because the rock cutting is not overly precise, particularly with the irregularities of the natural rock. The volume required for imbedding the construction is cut oversized and allows some working room.

Piers and pilings are driven deeper into the rock as needed to increase the acnhorings for the buildings to be located above (very tall building need substantially morre of this anchoring to counter the force of water currents against the building sides. Additional horizontal anchors, tunnels cut sideways (later filled with reinforced concrete), are added to expand the volume of rock the building foundation is attached to.

The prefabricated wall section(s) (made of reinforced concrete) are positioned and linked-up with their adjacent sections and solidly tied together. Filler concrete then fills in the excess area between the structure and the seabed rock , filling all irregularities and strongly joining/anchoring the structure into the seabed/rock. Some filler cement is also used to fill in lower foundation floors as further reinforcement of the building to the deeper piers/pilings. That material can have ALOT of filler - large solid rocks imbedded to make up the volume, as strength isnt the key factior for it.

The Basements usually have tunnels running through them where drainage systems are, which remove the inevitable water leakage that slowly seaps through/around all the walls and collects at the lowest points. Rapture might have to have been 'built like a bathtub' (as McDonagh says somewhere), but it is an inverted 'bathtub' that HAS small unpreventable leaks/seepings which had to be compensated for.

Unlike the construction scene shown in Ryan Amusemenst, steel/metal girders and beams make up only a tiny fraction of the City's construction, and even that has to be handled specially, as steel corrodes easily in salt water. Much of the reinforcement materials used for the concrete is special (including materials like basalt fiber). Temporary pinnings/anchors to hold/guide construction could be steel.

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I Added some Catacombs on a lower floor adjacent to Saturnine Caverns. You get there via a stairway down from the mausoleum/crypt in the center of the Graveyard (that graveyard was a bit small for even just the eccentrics in a city of 20000+ people).

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Not sure why there are so many skylights in this level (except a level developer thought it all was too plain), as looking up (outside) sees mostly blackness of the sufficiently deep ocean water (it would actually SUCK light out of the interior spaces) - you would think people would be more interested in seeing the Trees and Vegetation (eand employment of light colored walls and mirrors to reflect back the light and make the place look larger -- THAT might've been better). Side looking windows can at least see the City's lit skyline (though much of Rapture does NOT have 40 story buildings looming nearby). There would instead be MANY light sources substituted inside (Arcadia's plants required a sunlight's equivalent of brightness for many of the plants to grow properly).

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Problem : That Weird rock/stone block construction of ceiling and horizontal ceiling support 'beams' (with no arches apparent). A Structurally bad/useless method of construction (reinforced concrete it should be, and with as much arching as possible). No reason for a veneer of ceiling blocks there, as noone should look up there (its too artificial looking - should be plain/flat/painted). Similarly the odd wooden beams for many such rooms/corridors doesn't make that much sense either - those can't support much structurally, and cosmetically much of it is a pointless distraction (walls of simulated rock helpfully obscured with lots of foliage is what Ive tried to turn it more into.)

If I had done Arcadia, I would have had much of that fake rock (it CANNOT be structural for the walls/ceiling) being done smooth (Rapture IS basicly mostly constructed of reinforced cast concrete after all). Walls would have been painted with horizon colors low, and sky blue above - and light-colored to reflect as much light as possible down onto the plants, so that you don't have to have obvious floodlight for the plants to get enough light to grow. I would have added ALOT of Forced Perspective horizon/backdrop scenery upon many walls. The cut rock and wood beams might've been used here and there to simulate rustic walls where the structure was too narrow/tight for even a compressed perspective.

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You do see more than a few high ceilings in Arcadia, and I have continued that in the new added areas so that there could be reasonably tall trees (and perhaps in a few sections some more easily viewed/better done detailed painted sky ceiling).

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Observations :

As usual the (otside) 'Sky' water is far too bright (water light absorbtion), when the height of tall buildings nearby show too much depth (as tall as they might be, then there has to be further/additional clearance above them towards the Ocean's surface). Murky/pitch-dark exterior spaces wouldnt have looked as impressive, so the games unreality is understandable (But the MMORPG wont have that).

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When Ryan 'kills' Langford, it could have actually been him doing two things at once - testing the Vita-Chamber resurrection system's ability (probably she "wasn't quite dead" either), and giving Langford a powerful warning about what happens to people who defy him when he is fighting Rapture's enemy Atlas. Remember that Ryan was already figuring out who (Fontaine) he was really fighting against in dealing with Jack.

Having a 'bug-bomb' ready to gas Langford in her own lab is a bit contrived (but remember - "The Plot called for IT" to make Ryan look 'the bad guy', the crazy evil dictator/capitalist - they actually shoveled it on pretty thick, mostly against logic and consistency). Killing off key people (like Langford) who are needed to keep Rapture going is a bit wasteful/counterproductive. Theres no reason for Ryan to actually do that (thge whole Ill starve him of oxygen thing was dimwitted stopry telling anyway - the 'oxygen' would take months to 'run out' -- why not just GAS Jack IN Langfords office if Ryan really wanted to dispose of him ??????????????????? ). BTW, Did you actually check if Langford was really dead ?? We've seen 'corpses' come back to life elsewhere in the game after all ... Proof : You enter the room moments/a second after she is (poison) gassed, and YOU are still alive. Makes you (maybe) think that Ryan was upto something (playacting) ... more than things seem to appear (or the lame plot/story allowed).

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It was kind of funny INSIDE of Arcadia (particularly just past the Ticket Entrance) to have the HUGE ARCADIA advertisement signs/posters all over FOR Arcadia. Some Park SCENERY might've been better (too much work for the level designer, I guess). No real point of advertising when you already paid to be there.

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An unsuprising (this is Rapture after all) aspect of Arcadia was the commecial elements. Tours were given of the Agricultural School, the nearby Agri-business establishments, the Tree Farm displays, the Cavern highlights, the Hydroponic 'Farm of the Future', along with the many 'nature' accomodations/attractions.

The Ticket Booths at the Main Entrance - there is a park-like section outside ticket entrance where people could lounge in a park environment similar to much of the Arcadia Park itself. Why pay if you can get it for free ? But then there were many more attractions inside...

We did not get to see the large area additions (like the Deluxe Parklands) when we played BS1. They were (MMORPG STORYLINE) contaminated by an attack carried out by Fontaine/Atlas's minions, and sealed off until the civil war was over. Attacks in other spots had been keeping Professor Langford busy repairing systems more critical to the City's Oxygen supply (again no sufficient reason shown for Ryan to Kill her).

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I noticed in some places (like the entranceway to the 'Grotto') they paint the ceiling blue and with what look like clouds. That one is a rather low ceiling, compared to other places where it might've been more effective. Pipes and machinery immediately nearby also ruined any intended affect (there was plenty of volume to hide such things away).

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The crude Saturnine clothing texture (and the mask) could be put on most of the other Splicer models to mix them up a little, which was a good idea (reuse) with the limited graphics/render memory allowed for the game's target hardware. (The MMORPG would have MUCH more interesting stuff for all the antics those Saturnine had gotten upto --- ever hear of the 'Wicker Man' ?)

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Saturnine Symbols (glowing) :

The Story might be some academic and his students went crazy with ADAM (kind of a f%^&ked up Dead Poets Society thing) and created the Saturnine. With their mystic symbols they decided to 'write' their history of Rapture, much of it being self serving (to them) rubbish - leading them to scrawl them about in Arcadia (no doubt there were far more of this 'history' to be seen in the extensive tunnels and caverns seen in the extended 'caves', along with the obscenities/attrocities they committed in their ADAM-crazed antics).

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Atlas sure seems to be able to watch you closely everywhere, so that he can immediately make his comments. Kinda makes you (me anyway) wonder why YOU are doing the dangerous stuff that he doesn't seem to want to do himself. But he is VERY helpful, in a non-risktaking way. Ye I know that coordinating an NPC to be 'helpful' in live action (in a convincing way) was beyond most game companies abilities, but just one scene with "Atlas" fighting along side you might've been nice (consider that Elizabeth, in the later game, did not much more).

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One end of Tree Farm has a window with pipes behind it. Not so likely in RL, but for filler in a Slaughter-fest game its not an issue. I might have a wall of removable metal plates instead (to allow access, but hide them from sightseers). Probably you could have a pastoral mural there to help to extend the places illusion of space. Perhaps what was seen could serve as a demonstration of irrigartion machinery/apparatus, but its half obscured by foliage (too excessive for the limited overgrowth in the rest of Arcadia), and why behind a window when potential buyers want to touch what they are going to spend their money on ?? Filler...

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You would think that they (Rapture people/a level designer understanding Rapture people) would find better ways to hide pipes, machinery and such from the customers view in the 'scenic' parts of Arcadia (it is kindof a distraction/a-detraction from the whole point of the place). Coulda had them only exposed in blasted out walls/false-walls down for repairs (besides ones out-in-the-open in the behind-the-scenes areas). Put more remains of vegetation they were hidden behind -- might've been good. You have all the other fake environment (wood beams, stonework and such) already. Even the Bathysphere Station with odd pipes at the ceiling (like others have) has no good reason (except dress up by a level dev who thought it too plain).

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Arcadia_Closed


Dr Langford : "Today Arcadia was closed off to all but paying customers. The man hires me to build a forest at the bottom of the ocean, and then turns a walk in the woods into a luxury. Ryan asked, "Should a farmer not be able to sell his food?" "Is a potter not entitled to a profit from his pots?" I started to argue with the man and then I remembered who signed my checks. Only thing worse than a hypocrite is an unemployed one."

Hard to believe Ryan didn't explain to Langford the main idea behind Rapture (philosophy, etc...).

Arcadia could (when the Audio Diary was recorded ...) have had no entry fee IF there was an introductory/promotional period for the Arcadia Park (when first being opened), and then admission started after that (as intended). DO you really think Ryan would run it at a loss ? Technically the wording "started charging" can be there even if admission was charged after there was only one 'free' day/week at Arcadia. (But lets not get too stuck on strange 'canon' in a "game").

Actually 'charging' could also technically include any nominal fee - something employed to prevent people from abusing something that is 'Free' (imagine any 'nature' experience in Arcadia, if it was wall-to-wall people (like Coney Island beach on a Summer weekend), tossing garbage everywhere, children screaming, etc...

Maybe the strangest part is Langford being somehow suprised when she already KNEW how Rapture and Ryan operated (even up in the Surface world NOTHING is actually 'Free'). And a forest at the bottom of the sea IS a 'luxury' -- these were WW2/Depression era people, and American freebie 'parks' were still largely something in the future when Rapture was founded (the game writers wre often at a loss when they were supposed to reflect how people thought AT THAT TIME). Langford would have known all about having to get funding in the Real World, it is here a case of just putting words into her mouth by the writers to condemn something they dont understand -- as so often happened in these games.

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"Tree Farm" with a few handfuls of trees keeping Rapture supplied with Oxygen ?? It would take thousands of trees, as well as the many operating Farms to supply Oxygen for ~20000-40000 people, and the needs of Rapture's manufacturing and industry. What we see in Arcadia is OBVIOUSLY merely a bunch of exhibits/displays. The actual vast underground tree farms are elsewhere.

The trees you see outside in the Ocean (from Langford's Lab) are just another advertising scheme. ((Those miserable scraggly trees ? A patch of grass would have added upto more foliage than that...)) The expense to put one tree inside a tube reinforced strong enough to hold out the deep water pressure of the ocean (and with expensive Ryanium windows, when there is NO light to let in ...) is a cost too great and unneeded otherwise. External pipes/wires to light and heat those enclosures and to pipe CO2 in and O2 out is likewise impractical/expensive. Instead, for a proper designed 'farm', you would have multitudes of trees located in long tunnels melted into the ocean bedrock, and using electric lamps (fluorescent probably) for 'sunlight', and heat piped in from Hephaestus ... and making up whole extensive forests. THAT is a more reasonable/practical operation to supply a City with oxygen and biomass.

Actually, as plants go, trees are inefficient Oxygen producers, but the wood byproducts produced likely made up more than the difference in air recycling utility (and there could/would also be other more efficient O2 production operations using grass or algae).

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Even in BS1, you can employ 'traps' (which you had much more ability to do in BS2). Arcadia in the sequence where you activate the Lazarus Vector and the Zerg Waves of Splicers come at you. You could have gathered up (Telekinesis to carry/position) the various Explodies (tanks of gas, fuel barrels), and set Proximity Mines as triggers in various chokepoint to 'thin them out' significantly. Hard mode wasn't too hard when I did this. The body count of Splicers was pretty high after that battle ...

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Waterfall Grotto - very weird, all those water wheels (look up near the ceiling and theres a bunch more). The level dev must've thought all the moving wheels would look different/interesting. Perhaps there was (could have been) more up there (balcony/whatever) to let customers actually see whats going on there (lets let the MMORPG redesigners 'have at it' ...).

Scaled up and modified a bit - those (Grotto) Waterwheels would make a nice 'Kidee Ferris Wheel' for Ryan Amusements or the fairgrounds at 'Carnival' (right next to "The Skyline").

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Logic - Metro Exit is SEALED because of the 'gas'/whatever/defoliant ("Oxygen levels are Critical" !!!) but the airlock to Farmers Market is not sealed/locked ??? The Plot says so... Thus it was written, thus it was done. Unfortunately theres NOT even a "Hacking" plot thing for Players to do to override those doors to Farmers Market.

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Rapture Metro, Rapture Metro, Rapture Metro, Rapture Metro, ... Seriously, coulda had alot less of these signs (let the fricken Players explore to find their way, instead of leading them by the nose like dumb animals, Please...)

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Oddities :

Weird huge rocks up on/imbedded-in the ceiling (like near the entrance to Arcadia Glens) are obvious just needless filler (no real reason they would be there). It is wasting rendering budget when there could have been more good details down on the ground where we can see it.

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Not sure why there should be a Vita-Chamber located in the 'secret' smuggling tunnel (if they were only for Ryan's use). Elsewhere I've mentioned that they were commonly used by citizens for a 'pick-me-up' to counter the common ADAM negative side-effects (likely using a completely different technology). This justifies the Vita-Chamber being general use, and popular/successful enough for them to be all over Rapture.

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Not sure why there should be so many Splicers dressed in surgical gear around Arcadia (except just general lack of Splicer variations in the whole game - Asset data/cost limits). The MMORPG won't have limitations like that, 10+ hardware years later. (And if you want to dress up like one of those guys , then nothing is stopping you -- except the derisive laughter from Splicers).

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"Faith" gravestones in the immediate area exiting the Smuggling Tunnel : Gravestone says died 1942 (years before Rapture was even started). A bit odd to bury someone there who was already years dead, but then half a dozen of those gravestones are all the same (game asset limitation). If this is some takeoff on some even where Ryans 'Faith' died or somesuch, Im not sure what event that might represent (FDRs socialism had long previous crippled the country in Ryan's eyes).

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Not sure why there should be all those ugly pipes up near the ceiling in the original Tea Garden area (besides the small sprinkler system). They are not reachable and a false ceiling with a deck might've been better design. It is needless 'filler' machinery in the level, when that kind of thing should have been hidden as much as possible (it is supposed to be a 'park' after all) and more interesting details added. Any machinery sound they make would also disturb the 'natural' setting (the customers are supposed to be paying to get away from that kind of thing, after all).

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Salt water kills most plants really well, so anywhere there is a 'leak' (likely of ocean water) there ought to be dead plants of the types all over the place in Arcadia. (texture difference on same 3D mesh .. easy for an experienvced Dev). Yet more Detail for the MMORPG to add.

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Crap floating outside the ceiling window (in Water) on first path to Arcadia Glens. Part of Railing, a corpse, some plant materials -- Junk the Level Dev didn't bother to clear up ???

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In Ryan's Rapture I would expect it (Arcadia) would have a paid admission from the start (and Farmers Market was a whole seperate commercial establishment). The real growing areas (to be big enough to generate anything worthwhile ) are elsewhere. What we saw (farmwise) in Arcadia would be advertising/promotional. The whole "Rapture's Vacationland" advertisement signs also imply we aren't seeing alot of what had to be there.

Rereading the audio diary Arcadia_and_Oxygen : "we're paying for oxygen when we got photosynthesizing trees" -

If they had enough oxygen from the plants, I don't get why they (Langford saying that) would be paying for oxygen originally (unless it wasn't getting piped-in from the real farms -- which really aren't part of the 'Park' - maybe those areas are (would need to be) more like hydroponics factories, and quite large and unpretty). Consider also that you need air with sufficient C02 for the plants to grow, and would have to tie-in ALOT of airflow from Rapture's air circulation systems to BRING IN Carbon Dioxide for the plants to survive/grow.

If needed to balance the conversion cycle, a system using bacteria/molds/yeasts (non-photosynthesizing plants which absorb O2 and respirate out CO2) could regulate Carbon Dioxide generation when required.

SO the whole "we didnt figure this stuff out before" by Langford and the Farm operators really IS bizarre/illogical (technical ignorance the player is supposed to swallow). It would ALL have to be planned and built-in with that gas circulation system working from Rapture's start, AND be figured/planned/designed into the costs of making the whole Rapture ecosystem work (which would lead directly to "Hey we could/will make money off this oxygen !!", if it wasn't ALREADY completely pre-planned-out as a component of Ryan Industry's 'Air' utility business). Rapture is pretty much a closed system, and Air IS the first thing you had better think of recycling/restoring when you are underwater (its NOT Rocket Science - just basic High School stuff).

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Having 'Pay' (coin-op) Sightseeing Viewers looking straight into the sides of trees on the overlook of Lower Rolling Hills is kinda dumb (short distances viewed is not too bright either) . Perhaps Arcadia had been planned to be a little more extensive, but game-making reality caught up and killed it.

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Heroes and Criminals (Audio Diary)

Diane McClintock : "I couldn't believe how much things had changed since I left Dr. Steinman's office. It's like I don't even recognize Rapture no more. I hear they've been rounding up people in 'Pollo Square... I asked Ryan how could he do such things to innocents. He said, "Innocents? If they haven't chosen to defend Rapture, they've chosen to side with Atlas and his bandits". So there are no innocents. There are heroes, and there are criminals."

Diane Kinda has been out of the loop of the happenings - the slaughters of Citizens by Altas's terrorists -- but "Out of sight, out of mind"... "Rounding up 'people'" ... "innocents"(???) -- supporters of the terrorists (note- and not just shooting them all - we NEVER saw any huge piles of bodies any different than the ambient corpse count in the rest of Rapture there in Apollo Square). Not exactly a supportable position here being portrayed as some kind of evidence of Ryan being 'The Tyrant'. Sorry game writers, anarchy and murder are NOT a formula for sustaining civilization. People recently out of WW2 would understand things far better than the writers, apparently.

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Bags of 'fertilizer' - nothing so satifactorily says 'Victory' quite like beating someone to death with a sack of manure. Actually the bags of 'fertilizer' (you see about Arcadia) would become quite valuable in Rapture, when the remaining people had to start growing some of their own food (just Fish&Kelp every day gets rather tedius).

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I've Seen some blue skypaint and clouds in many areas (including painted on pipes). I previously didn't notice this because of the dark up there (easier to see it with the brightness turned up alot, and after removal of the obscuring misting of the plant killing miasma).

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There are quite a few large 'workrooms' in Arcadia. But like modern museums/parks, showing the 'behind the scenes' operations would have become part of the 'exhibits' (think of Rapture school children having 'Tours' exposing them to 'agricultural' knowledge, showing how an important component of the Cities infrastructure operates (and a chance to advertise to them by the various businesses involved and funding Arcadia).

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An important thing about the Arcadia 'Caverns' construction is that fake-rock concrete can be 'hosed out' -- a detail that was learned at Disneyland about the same time, needed to keep under control the smell of urine in the caves on Tom Sawyer Island.

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