BioShock Infinite’s New Difficulty Mode, 1999 Mode, Revealed

January 19, 2012Written by Nick Michetti

Irrational Games knows that there are gamers out there who love a good challenge and they’re intending to offer them one, courtesy of BioShock Infinite‘s newly revealed “1999 Mode.”

1999 mode offers players a difficult gameplay experience that tasks players with making permanent decisions. The mode includes tweaks and features that players won’t experience when playing the game through on other difficulties. Players will be faced with demanding weapon, power, and health management. They’ll also need to carefully monitor their combat specializations, as any weapon will be useless to the player unless they have the necessary specialization. In combat, every shot will count. Health will be set to a completely different baseline.

As for respawning, if players don’t have the resources to be revived, they’ll be sent to a “Game Over” screen.

Ken Levine, Creative Director at Irrational Games, said:

We want to give our oldest and most committed fans an option to go back to our roots. In 1999 Mode, gamers face more of the permanent consequences of their gameplay decisions. In BioShock Infinite, gamers will have to sweat out the results of their actions. In addition, 1999 Mode will demand that players pick specializations, and focus on them.

I’m an old school gamer. We wanted to make sure we were taking into account the play styles of gamers like me. So we went straight to the horse’s mouth by asking them, on our website, a series of questions about how they play our games. 94.6 percent of respondents indicated that upgrade choices enhanced their BioShock gameplay experience; however, 56.8 percent indicated that being required to make permanent decisions about their character would have made the game even better.

BioShock Infinite is in development for PS3, Xbox 360, and PC and is scheduled to release in 2012.