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Bioshock Illogic

Bioshock - Its over-contrived story could have been far better :

One thing you have to understand about Bioshock 1 and 2 - was that they are blast-fest FPSs, set in a purposely CREATED dystopia / Fail-topia (the plot says so, cuz you gotta kill lotsa people without it being immoral).

Ryan rants against "altruism"; ( ex- [url] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f18NWnxRmjI [/url] ) , yet his very building of Rapture as a city for others is altruism is it not? He is a billionaire who could have built an Eden for himself alone (apart from the servants and friends) if he wished.

The developers make him a patsy for their desired failures of Objectivism and Capitalism. They have Ryan do extremely illogical things -- for someone who was a successful industrialist (ie- someone who WOULD know how to handle 'workers' and create successful projects/solutions). But Rapture MUST FAIL or there would be no game (of the typical FPS slaughter type anyway...). So they sloppily put together the plot situation, systematically setting up Objectivism/Libertarianism and Capitalism as 'a failure'. What they contrived/fabricated though wasnt quite logical.

Construction workers supposedly are out of work and fuel rebellion, but why would Ryan let them in to stay with that very predictable outcome? Workers would have been told construction would eventually end and they would HAVE to move on to new occupations in Rapture (and it was made VERY clear up front to everyone who went to Rapture that NOONE could leave). Such things would be planned for and Ryan would NOT be ignorant of handling the eventualities. But simple enough to intentionally pre-create it broken - it is all supposed to FAIL - the plot says so, so it was MADE to fail. Period.

ADAM is discovered and soon is shown to have terrifying long term effects. Yet, if you follow what the game designers lay out, most people in Rapture started using it wholesale (common sense of people seems discounted by the designers, also). And THEN Ryan takes over the ADAM industry and continues its sales, when it is ALREADY known sideeffects make people deformed and murderously insane, and who will threaten the whole economy/survival.  Yes, sure, he would encourage even more dangerous ADAM Splicers to be running about in the streets.

The designers give Ryan no better alternatives to the problems ADAM has caused. They load the deck against him - have him declare "There is no law" (except Smuggling, illegal as Treason, because of the secrecy the city needs to survive).  How can you have a modern city without any kind of commercial contract enforcement (laws)?  How can you maintain any order in the streets if anyone can do whatever they want?  Simultaneously, the story has 'Constables' in Rapture -- what exactly are the things these Constables are to enforce when they maintain order?  When there are 'no' laws??   A sloppy contradiction -- the City could hardly get built under such a system, let alone sustain itself for over a decade.

Very convenient that Ryan never could invoked public health measures -- if not after Fontaine starts foisting the addictive substance on the population (oh, there must be self-responsibility...), BUT at least to do it after ADAM is finally understood by all to create murderous insanity (Fontaine/ADAM poisoning the population). Instead the criminal who is pushing the stuff  "is just an entrepreneur, so let the Buyer Beware".

Somehow, for years, Ryan is unable to pin a huge Smuggling operation on Fontaine - unlikely in a place as small as Rapture.  Fontaine's gangsterism is somehow completely missed (his murdering business rivals and strongarming those in his way would be rather hard to ignore).  Doing something about that earlier would have stopped the criminal's rise, his Splicer gang/army never would have happened -- quite convenient, quite contrived.

Later, there is a civil war in-progress, with an enemy (Atlas) seeking to destroy/steal everything Ryan has built, making the chaos/disruptions his Splicers have caused, somehow Ryan's fault.  The economy is being wrecked, people WILL starve or be murdered in the streets.  Ryan finally puts War Measures into place and all you hear in-game are voices griping about how Ryan has compromised his principles.  This population largely arrived in Rapture just after WW2, so would have had better understanding than the game designers, who make the character mouth THEIR contemporary point of view.   Ryan had done little at first, allowing people to work out the problems themselves.  After the threat grows worse, he finally takes direct action to end the destruction, and HE is now labeled a 'tyrant'.(little support for what Ryan is doing is heard)  Ryan is "damned if he does, and damned if he doesnt".

Many of Ryan's "loyal" supporters abandon/betray him, or even seek to kill him (and side with Atlas who stands for things most of the people in Rapture left the Surface to get away from).  How convenient. Such loyalty. Such contrived stupidity.  McDonagh's --- "lets hand the weapon of Splicer Mayhem to 'Fontains boys' " is one of the stupidest of all.     Why not  "Lets shut that whole F'ing poison industry down" ???

The most absurd thing of all was : Ryan effectively committing suicide by ordering you (the Player) to kill him while under the mind control he has discovered.   At that point, Ryan has already pretty much won the civil war, and is closing in on the bad guy (Fontaine/Atlas) whose Splicer army has all but been neutralized/turned against Atlas).  But Ryan suddenly is a QUITTER -- AFTER he has mostly restored order, and NOW has a chance to rebuild HIS City.  HE now can control the ADAM and Splicers, and then procede to find a cure for its negative effects or even eliminate it eventually.  Faking his death, like Fontaine had, would have been an Epic Twist the designers completely missed.

All so absurd.   Bioshock's logic holes can be explained simply by a "good enuf" mentality on the part of the designers, who could have made a much more cohesive/logical story -- if they cared to (actually with little extra effort).   Great games achieve such things.   Instead, Bioshock pulls the 'stupid' player around by the nose, via a hackneyed story and induces the players to see 'enemies' (need targets to shoot, of course), and to yank them through some crude plot  'Twists'  and the largely meaningless 'Moral Choices'.    All in all, it resulted in a fancy shooting gallery with all the ducks tied in place.   Game of the Year ...  grading on a curve (just evidence how game makers these days have hit a plateau)?


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