Bioshock Infinite: Burial At Sea Episode 1 Xbox 360 Review
Here we are back again with Bioshock Infinite’s latest DLC: Burial at Sea. We finally get to revisit one of the most breath-taking environments in gaming again. Rapture. But was the short trip back to the underwater paradise worth the $15 price tag? Let’s take a look.
The main concept this time around is that players visit rapture again but in a different way than they’ve experienced before. The city is bustling with life and the various sights and sounds make the DLC a showcase of the city before things went bad. This approach makes the city much more memorable as I found myself exploring every shop and every nook and cranny just to see what the city had to offer. However as nice as exploring rapture is; after a nice introduction I felt my exploration options were limited afterwards because I wanted to explore more. For what it’s worth it was a nice taste that left me wanting more.
Gameplay wise the combat from the main game is retained in raptures environment. It’s also kind of comical how they introduce some weapons and mechanics from the main game into rapture via bookers and Elizabeth’s banter between each other when you pick up certain weapons. Speaking of the weapons the DLC feels barebones because early on ammo and eve are scarce to a degree which means you have to play carefully and utilize stealth and plasmid combos to your advantage. It’s a nice touch but feels out-of-place and awkward sometimes. It just doesn’t feel “right” if that makes sense. A new plasmid is introduced to players to dispense splicers in a different way. It’s called old man winter which feels like the ice plasmid from the original Bioshock game. The plasmid can be useful for dispatching splicers quickly and traversing certain points in the game, but overall I gravitated to shock jockey and devils kiss. Also a new weapon is introduced which has become one of my favorite weapons in the game. The radar range. This gun may look like a satellite dish but packs an explosive punch when used in combat. Players just point at an enemy shoot a beam that emits onto a splicer and after a couple of seconds they turn into a bomb and explode! Sounds nice right? I mean who doesn’t like exploding splicers in an underwater city with a satellite dish for a gun? Either way the new weapons made the game a little more refreshing from its stale combat but not enough to fully immerse me to experiment new ways to defeat splicers. It’s also worth mentioning that the infamous big daddy returns as well in a short but sweet battle. Overall the gameplay was solid with some new toys to play with but not enough to keep me amused for the entirety of the DLC.
The graphics are absolutely satisfying. I found myself walking around rapture just to grasp its sights. Now that this is a more detailed version of the city it’s even more beautiful to look at compared to what players saw back in the original game released back in 2008. Weapons also saw an upgrade in aesthetic and have a nice gold accent to them. I experienced some frame stutter but not enough to annoy me at all. In short the graphics are decent. But if you have a gaming PC I’d recommend playing DLC there as the graphics will look a lot better and you don’t have to deal with texture pop in’s and some frame drops.
The story this time around involves Booker and Elizabeth crossing paths again to find a missing girl. Sounds like a typical story right? Keep in mind if you played through the main game and the original Bioshock; the story will be much easier to understand and follow as the characters make subtle references to the original game and the main story of Infinite. Not much else can be said about the story without giving anything away but let’s just say it makes you think a bit. As for my personal thoughts on the narrative; I think it was a well written story for the hour and a half runtime of the DLC. Pretty much like a movie but very stripped down and to the point. It was nice to see characters from the original game make an appearance in sections of the story but not enough time was available to fully flesh them out in their true selves. I can understand that this DLC was meant to be short but after the last cut scene I was left with more questions than answers which sets up part two very nicely leaving me excited to see what happens in part 2 as it ends on a very heavy cliff hanger.
Overall Burial at Sea was a nice homage to Rapture. The revisit to the amazing city, the new fun weapons, and new story make it a perfect reason to pick this DLC up. If you have $15 lying around pick this up but I’d strongly recommend getting the season pass which is another $5 so you can save yourself some money. That way $20 will allow you to play all 3 DLC add-ons for this amazing game. It’s short enough to provide a nice fix for fans of the first game but not enough to quench their thirst. Hopefully in part 2 we get more of Burial at Sea, but with a longer runtime. Now if you’ll excuse me I have to reassemble my brain again after it was blown for a second time.