The next BioShock game may add a new layer to the game's combat systems by letting users creatively handle or even bypass combat encounters.
A new BioShock game is in development for next-gen consoles at new 2K studio Cloud Chamber. We don't know much about the game just yet, but some job listings give us an idea of what to expect. Right now Cloud Chamber is hiring 41 developers including senior lead-level positions.
Apparently BioShock 4 (or whatever it's called) is being built in Unreal Engine 4 and will have a unique approach to its combat. The way it's described makes me think of Dishonored's incredible freedom-oriented approach to FPS action, whether it be using powers on the world in creative ways to solve problems or take out enemies, or using abilities to circumvent battles altogether. Along with this level of combat, the game aims to have dynamic AI that's tied to a highly-reactive world.
"You'll develop an FPS combat paradigm that is accessible, satisfying, and allows for a high degree of player expression and experimentation within a highly reactive world. Get creative: look beyond direct conflict, accommodate various play-styles and design encounters that can be resolved through player ingenuity," reads a job listing for a Lead Combat and AI Designer.
The last part about player ingenuity is certainly interesting. BioShock games are known for their creative use of powers and abilities to react with the in-game world, and the new game will likely reflect this while possibly taking it to a whole new level.
Another interesting tidbit from the job listings comes from the Senior AI Engineer hiring page, which confirms the project is a narrative-driven, systemic game centered around tribal-based AI factions, possibly hinting at multiple biomes.
"We're looking for someone to spearhead the development of a pillar or two of our AI Systems in a strongly narrative and systemic game. We have high ambitions for tying AI and storytelling together and it will be your responsibility to crystallize that ambition around several AI systems.
"You will be in close collaboration with Design leadership to flush out the designs and finalize the implementations for an urban crowd system and the systemic tribal ecology of a sometimes hostile AI."
These listings clearly indicate BioShock 4 won't be ready for years and years. We may not even see it before 2022 or thereabouts as next-gen consoles mature and start belting out big hits.
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