Ken Levine on BioShock Infinite’s Burial at Sea Episode 1 DLC Length: “It’s not the Longest Thing in the World”

November 12, 2013Written by Jason Dunning


With Burial at Sea Episode 1 for BioShock Infinite now live in the North American PlayStation Store (Europe gets it tomorrow), you’ll be able to head back into Rapture, but early reports are that you’ll be able to clear the DLC in under two hours.

To explain why Burial at Sea Episode 1 is that length, Creative Director Ken Levine spoke to Eurogamer:

If you zip through it then it’s not a hugely long experience but if you dig deep it’s probably three hours plus, if you really dig deep. But it’s not the longest thing in the world.

I think there are definitely people who are like ‘Well, I want hours and hours of gamplay’. I think if that is your primary metric, this probably isn’t the thing for you. If you want to feel like ‘Wow, I just got a whole new experience’ – that’s what you get out of this.

A comparison between Burial at Sea Episode 1’s length and the length of BioShock 2’s Minerva’s Den DLC was brought up, with Levine explaining a key difference between the two:

We had a choice. Minerva’s Den is terrific – I love it and it is effectively what we call a ‘kitbash’ of BioShock 2. They take existing assets and modify them to make a new story. They did an amazing job with that. But we wanted to do something completely different. If you look at it, [Burial at Sea] is really the first level and a half of a new game – or maybe not a new game, but of a sequel. And we knew that meant it wouldn’t be the longest gameplay experience.

Once they had settled on the idea of putting Booker and Elizabeth into Rapture, Levine said, “Foolishly we thought we’d go back in and ‘kitbash’ a load of BioShock 1 assets. Then we thought no, god, that’s a terrible idea, that’s not fair and it’s not going to look good.”

Are you going to be playing through Burial at Sea Episode 1 this week? Let us know in the comments below.