Set in an alternate universe of Rapture in 1958, the private detective, Book Dewitt, is approached by Elizabeth asking for help in the search for a missing little girl. Their investigation leads them into a secluded section of Rapture run by Frank Fontaine. Once a department store, but now a sunken prison as a result of Fontaine’s rebellion, the population’s isolation and plasmid abuse has driven them into madness; further leading the investigative pair into danger.
Burial at Sea: Episode 1 is the first story-based dlc for the critically acclaimed BioShock Infinite. Fans of the original BioShock will be pleased to hear this DLC returns to Rapture to get a deeper look into this fallen utopia. Mixing some of the best elements from Infinite and the original, Burial at Sea is a satisfying blend of nostalgia and wonder.
Continuing the multiple universe theme of Infinite, Burial at Sea is a bit of a retelling of the main game only this time in the Rapture setting. Booker Dewitt is approached by a noire version of Elizabeth to search for a missing little girl named, Sally. The game kicks off by exploring Rapture in the very early stages of its decay. Viewing Rapture before it’s descent into madness and destruction is a welcoming experience. Bustling citizens casually discuss their ideals and gossip amongst each other in a pristine environment makes the world come alive. There was also a glimpse at the more practical, everyday use of plasmids before they were turned into instruments of destruction. It’s made clear that this Booker is accustomed Rapture. Visiting certain NPCs can be met with references to previous encounters not seen by the player. It’s a nice touch to add to the authenticity of the setting.
Burial at Sea perfectly blends some of the best aspects of Infinite and the original BioShock. The Sky-Hook, Sky- Line, shield, vigors (renamed to plasmids), and Elizabeth’s assistance all return to aid you in combat. Combat favors that of BioShock 1 in the sense that stealth plays a bigger role than it did in Infinite, and make sure you put stealth to good use because ammo is found sparingly. I was constantly running out of ammo forcing me to resort to melee combat often. This does add a bit more strategy to combat, but guns could have at least carried more ammo; most only had enough for 1 full reload. Speaking of guns, no longer are you restricted to carrying two weapons at a time. Like BioShock you can carry every weapon found and cycle through them in any combination you like. Burial at Sea also introduces a new weapon called the Ray Range and brings back the classic plasmid, Old Man Winter. The Radar Range is a really cool weapon that acts like a microwave gun. Firing at splicers heats them up causing them to explode, and if other splicers are close by, they too will be caught in the explosion.
The look and feel of BioShock is there in just about every way. Familiar sounds such as the “Circus of Values” jingle and the “El Ammo Bandito” can be heard when passing by. Familiar characters also make an appearance through traditional audio recordings, npc discussions, and direct encounters. Oddly enough, I felt more at home in the few hours of this dlc than I did with the entirety of BioShock 2 (BioShock 2 was a good game, but not on the level of BioShock 1 and Infinite).
Just as beautiful as Columbia in the main game, except in a contrasting environment. The atmosphere Rapture creates makes it one of my favorite video game settings of all-time.
Anyone familiar with BioShock 1 will love all the familiar sounds that made the game extra special. Combined with talented voice actors, it’s as good as it can get.
The many nods to BioShock 1 are a real treat that will make you want to play the first game all over again. I much preferred the combat in this dlc than in the main game because it more closely resembled BioShock 1, allowing for more variation in combat, especially with the addition of the Sky-Hook and Sky-Line featured in Infinite.
- Revisits Rapture
- Feels like BioShock 1 with improvements
- Too short
- Not enough ammo
Style – Single-player, First-person Shooter
Developer – Irrational Games
Publisher – 2K Games
Release – November 2013
4.5 – Gameplay
5.0 – Graphics
4.5 – Sound
4.0 – Entertainment
2.0 – Replay Value
BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea
Unfortunately Burial at Sea runs on the short side. Even though it was short, the re-visit to Rapture in the proper hands was worth it, plus the uncertainty of exactly what’s to come in Episode 2 leaves room for me wanting more. I recommend Burial at Sea: Episode 1 to anyone eager to explore Rapture one last time.