Tired of feeling good about yourself? (Bioshock, Xbox 360)

I’ve been playing Bioshock, which is something that people do these days. I was aware of all the hype and the much-publicized question of whether to harvest or rescue the Little Sister characters. Either way you’re rewarded, but you apparently get more goodies if you kill them. In case you don’t know, the Little Sisters are like ten-year old girls with zombie eyes. You can pull out the stuff (Adam) that’s making them all weird, which benefits you. You can do this by stroking them gently or by killing them. If you rescue the Little Sisters, they become normal girls. Not much of a decision there for me.

However, I wasn’t ready for the Big Daddies. These are the iconic diver suit types from the game’s cover, an excellent design overall. We don’t know much about them (well I don’t, at least), except that they protect the Little Sisters when they go about extracting Adam from dead bodies with giant syringes.

Now, in order to get your hands on the Little Sisters, you need to get rid of the Big Daddies protecting them. The thing is, the Big Daddies and Little Sisters are absolutely no threat to you. They let you go about freely – they’re only interested in the dead. I found it very hard to attack a Big Daddy; I was clearly being the predator, the aggressor here. Hell, the Little Sisters give the Big Daddies names (“Mr. Bubbles”, “Rosie”)!

My sympathies were entirely with the Big Daddy, trying to protect the Little Sister, I felt like such an asshole. So in order to avoid this, maybe find an excuse to attack him, I followed a lone Big Daddy around. His Little Sister was nowhere to be seen. The hulking creature went to a vent up high in the wall. Checking his surroundings, he banged on the wall. Out came his Little Sister. The Big Daddy, Rosie, helped him down from the height, being very careful in his movements. It was touching. I couldn’t attack them, so I followed them around for a while. After extracting some Adam, Rosie helped the Little Sister to another vent. I tried going away, moving to the next area in the game, but I was warned that unless I rescued or harvested all the Little Sisters in the level, I would have very little chance of surviving.

So after a while I was looting the cold body of Rosie. I’m actually ashamed to tell about it. It’s very clever, really. I’m still thinking about if I could make do without the Adam; after all, there are resurrection chambers everywhere. Speaking of which, Bioshock isn’t really a “spiritual successor” to System Shock 2, as has been said: it is System Shock 2, identical in all core gameplay elements, but with a tighter plot and drop-dead gorgeus visual design.

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