Everything We Learned From Our BioShock Infinite PC Hands-On


  • If you think of BioShock 2′s two-handed combat system, you have an idea of what’s happening in Infinite. You’ll find juices called Vigors that give you special powers in one hand, and carry a gun in the other.

  • We saw three Vigors in action: Bucking Bronco, Possession and Devil’s Kiss. The first sends a shockwave that kicks enemies into the air and levitates them (a lot like some biotic attacks from Mass Effect); the second allows players to turn machines or enemies into allies, who then commit suicide when possession wears off; and the third allows you to throw explosive grenades that set people on fire.

  • All your Vigor powers can be set as traps for additional damage by holding down the Vigor button (in my case, right mouse). Say goodbye to trap-only plasmids that we saw in BioShock.

  • Vigors run on salts — the equivalent of EVE in BioShock — and you’ll find yourself hunting this stuff a lot more. Health items and salts don’t seem to be held in inventory anymore, so looting is all the more important.

  • Booker can also equip various pieces of clothing called “Gear,” and each conveys a special ability or attribute. You can wear four pieces of gear at a time, but only one of each type: legs, torso, arms and head. I saw gear that gave me better melee attacks, better skyhook usage, and defensive boosts.

  • Within the first half-hour into the game, you’ll get a recharging shield. So yes, you’ll be taking cover and waiting for your shield to recharge during battle.

  • Your ever-present skyhook item is your standard melee tool. It’s also capable of executing enemies by hamming it into their chests, faces, and more. You can break necks with it; it’s disgusting. The gore level has definitely been heightened.

  • Shooting, on the other hand, is pretty much the same as you’d expect. The combat often handles a lot like it would in any other FPS, with down-the-sights aiming a standard.

  • You can only carry two weapons at a time, and equip two Vigors at a time. You can swap out with things you find in the world, like additional Vigor vials and weapons you scavenge from dead enemies.

  • The skyhook scenes we’ve seen in trailers aren’t scripted, they’re real-time. You can leap to any rail with your skyhook with one button, snag the rail, and use it like a rollercoaster. You can jump to other rails, jump down on enemies, and shoot the whole time you’re riding.

  • You’ll find vending machines everywhere, and they’ll allow you to spend money to upgrade stuff. Vigors and weapons can be upgraded in a number of cool ways, for a price. Other vending machines sell essentials like ammo and health.

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3 Comments on Everything We Learned From Our BioShock Infinite PC Hands-On


On December 7, 2012 at 8:05 pm

Did you forget the rest of the article? Your PC Considerations ends with “After spending a while with..”

Phil Hornshaw

On December 7, 2012 at 8:10 pm

@Craig Whoops, something’s screwy. Fixing.


On December 8, 2012 at 12:00 am

What is it with games these days? They have to throw everything at you – gunplay, magic, genetic engineering, time travel, zombies, whatever. Please, developers, pick a sub-genre and stick with it, OK? No matter how well crafted you think it is, too many concepts just makes for an unfocused and cheapened experience.