Video game adaptations in movies and TV are becoming more common. While older movies based on games were somewhat hit-or-miss, it seems to be on the upswing. That’s amazing for gamers around the world. One of the ones we’re most excited about at GOG is the upcoming BioShock movie from Netflix.
Announced recently, a BioShock movie has been over 10-years in the making, after the first attempt was eventually scrapped around 2011. Now, Netflix is ready to take on the huge project of bringing the amazing world of BioShock alive on the little screen.
Netflix has a pretty solid track record when it comes to original shows and movies, and our hopes are high that they can knock this one out of the park. But it won’t be easy, the BioShock series is infamous for its beautiful scenery and deep messaging. The producers and directors will really need to pay attention to the series’ themes if they hope to impress gamers.
Because we are so excited, we wanted to spend a little time talking about games in the series and the themes that are presented throughout. So join us as we plunge into the cold waters of Rapture and explore the murky depths below.
Looking back at the BioShock video games
“They told me, son, you’re special, you were born to do great things.”
These are the first words you hear when you fire up BioShock for the first time. While the character is referring to himself, we think the quote works for the amazing game series, as well.
The first BioShock game was released way back in 2007, developed by 2K Boston and published by 2K Games. From the first moments of the opening cutscene, players witnessed an iconic starting scene. The latter instantly lets you know you are going to be for a wild ride.
If that wasn’t enough, the game quickly shows that it is more than just a shooter. Scenery, themes, and memorable characters all play an important role in the overall feel of the series.
If you’ve never played a theme before, all three games (BioShock, BioShock 2, and BioShock Infinite) are played through the first-person perspective. You’ll use a combination of guns and kinetic powers earned through things called Plasmids to blast away bad guys and solve puzzles.
A mix of genres
“Love Is Just A Chemical, We Give It Meaning By Choice.”
For those that like choice, you’ll also be happy to hear it includes RPG elements that allow you to play the game how you like. That choice also allows you to figure out enemies’ weak points to better manage some of the more difficult fighting segments.
The games definitely lean on the side of horror, especially the first two. Yet don’t let that turn you away, the story is worth sticking through some of the more scary parts of the experience.
Throughout the first two games, you’ll explore the world of Rapture, a sprawling, underwater city. It has been built by a billionaire, Andrew Ryan, looking to get away from the laws and regulations of the surface.
In the third game, which actually takes place years before the events of BioShock, you leave the murky waters. Bioshock Infinite takes to the skies in the floating city of Columbia.
The series is a monumental triumph of story and gameplay, so do yourself a favor and check these games out if you never have before. And if you’re a sucker for a good quote, the BioShock is literally chock-full of them.
The main themes of BioShock
“We All Make Choices, But In The End Our Choices Make Us.”
While the fun gameplay of BioShock is obviously one of the best things about it, the series is also renowned for its deep subject matters. The game challenges the player’s own preconceived notions. One thing that makes the trilogy of games interesting is how each one is based on a different concept or set of beliefs.
The original BioShock borrows heavily from the works of Ayn Rand (author of Atlas Shrugged) and the philosophy of Objectivism. Essentially, objectivism is the belief that you should focus on yourself and your goals, before worrying about other people. It is one of the main conflicts between the two antagonists in the game, Andrew Ryan and Frank Fontaine. It’s also one of the core gameplay elements in the original game. That’s because certain choices you make can greatly benefit you if you are selfish…or will they?
“When I need you, you’ll be there; whispering over my shoulder.”
BioShock 2 flips the script, however, with new characters that drive themes of collectivism. This means that instead of the individual, the focus should be on the group, and what is best for everyone. But things are never that simple, are they? BioShock 2 tries to tackle those tough issues through its story and gameplay.
Finally, BioShock Infinite tackles an interesting concept and one that might be especially intriguing to players in the US – American exceptionalism. It does this through both the location the player explores and through themes present in the game.
While that is a big subject to tackle, basically, American exceptionalism explores how (and if) America is “unique” from all other countries. The game also explores issues like racism, by presenting it as part of in-game Columbia’s history.
So, as you can see, the game is not short on BIG themes. Gamers will have their minds challenged as much as their trigger fingers exercised. If that is something you are looking for, you have hours of thought-provoking fun ahead of you.
What will the BioShock movie be about?
“There’s Always A Lighthouse, Always A Man, Always A City…”
This quote from BioShock refers to the inevitable. While things were shaky about a Bioshock film for nearly a decade, the world presented across the series has been waiting patiently for its time to shine.
And it seems that time is finally coming. Sadly, very little is known about the upcoming Netflix movie at this point. The BioShock universe is expansive that the possibilities are nearly limitless. In addition, there is currently a fourth game in the making. This offers even more options for the direction of the movie.
In the tweet announcing the news, there is a picture of the iconic Big Daddy robot (but no sign of a Little Sister!). This could mean it is more focused on either the original BioShock or BioShock 2.
It’s also possible that we could see a prequel to the original game. This would mean we’ll get a better look at how events around the world led to the creation of Rapture. Regardless of what the movie will be focused on, we’re quite sure it’s going to feature some amazing visuals. A gripping story, filled with themes reflected throughout the trilogy of games, would also be nice.
How to play BioShock in 2022
If you are looking to get your hands on BioShock, either to play it for the first time or just to hype yourself up for the movie, you have plenty of options.
If console gaming is more your style, don’t worry. The BioShock Collection is available for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch, as well. It features all three games.