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BioShock Writer on ‘Class’ Specializing, and Infinite’s Traditional RPG Elements

January 14, 2013 Written by Jesse Meikle

BioShock, and the February 26th-bound spiritual sequel, BioShock: Infinite, are part of the rapidly growing “action RPG” category, along with other critically well received titles, including Mass Effect, Borderlands, Darksiders, Skyrim, and Demon/Dark Souls.

But not all of these titles will necessarily be perceived as RPGs, due to their high-action orientation, and nontraditional (RPG) gameplay perspective.

In an interview with 1UP, BioShock Infinite writer, Drew Holmes, spoke about Infinite‘s idea of trait and stat specialization:

There’s the Infusions that you’ll come across. The Infusions… Whenever you find them, you pick it up, and you have to choose between upgrading your shield, your health, or your salts. If you really want to use your salts, you’re going to want to put the Infusions into salts. That’ll allow you to constantly bombard stuff. But you’re going to have to decide whether it’s worth trading off extra shields or extra health.

Drew then took the time to explain how ‘gear’ works in BioShock Infinite:

To help you kit out your character, you’ve got gear, which is going to… If you’re really like, “I love salts, I love Vigors, I wanna just dump everything into that,” you can buy gear that’s going to multiply your salts. You can just be this magical wizard throwing all these Vigors at everyone. There are hard choices you’ll have to make with the infusions, for sure. But the gear you’ll be able to swap in and out and come up with whatever combination that you want.

It’s always nice to be reminded that the RPG genre is alive and well, even if it’s constantly be discreetly tucked into a trigger-happy gaming taco. What do you think about the westernized reemergence of (partial) RPGs?

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