Objectively speaking, it may even be better than its predecessor. But - and it's a big but - the freshness and multi-layered ingenuity of the first game's setting was a huge part of that title's appeal, and aside from one notable scene late in the game, Bioshock 2's set-piece locations fail to show us much that's new and essential about this richly-crafted world. What's there is well realised, but it's like returning to the same hotel at the same resort as you visited last year; Rapture in this form no longer has the same impact as it did when we first dipped our toes into the water two years ago. In so many ways, it never could have.
The endings leave plenty of options open for a threequel, and if 2K are prepared to throw the shackles off and craft another world as unique as Rapture, it'll definitely be one to watch. But for now, we've got a game that tackles the imposing task of following a classic like Bioshock head-on, and in the process creates something equally as entertaining, but in subtly different ways. The two games both deserve a place on every Xbox owner's games shelf, side by side, as inseparable as Daddy and Sister.
For another opinion read CVG's BioShock 2 Review.
Conservative in places but still a class act, this won't disappoint Bioshock fans.
- Improved, dynamic gunplay
- Big Sisters are great opponents
- Rapture feels too familiar