Before you read on, or play Burial at Sea Episode 2, we strongly suggest that as a minimum you have completed BioShock Infinite and Burial at Sea Episode 1. To get the most out of this DLC we would also highly recommend that you’ve played the original BioShock.
BioShock Infinite was one of our favourite games of 2013 and we enjoyed it so much we’d probably include it as one of our all-time greats. After completing it we were eager for more and were delighted when Irrational started delivering in the form of DLC.
The first expansion Clash in the Clouds was focused on arena-based combat which was fun but didn’t feature the wonderful story. That was saved for Burial at Sea which was released in two parts. When we reviewed Episode One we enjoyed the story but found ourselves a little disappointed that it wasn’t longer.
Episode One told a different tale of Booker and Elizabeth and returned players to Rapture (the setting of the first game) before its fall. Playing again as Booker we were sent by Elizabeth on a mission to find a girl named Sally. It was a superb story that again took us by surprise at the end but still left us wanting more.
Ken Levine recently announced that Irrational is closing after this DLC so it’s both the last part of BioShock Infinite and the last BioShock game that the team will ever make. We’ve been hoping that they’d go out on a high and thankfully they’ve done just that. There’s a staggering amount of work gone into Episode 2.
Burial at Sea Episode 2 picks up events from right at the end of Episode One. There’s a twist though as this time we’re playing as Elizabeth for the first time. The change of protagonist also brings along a change in gameplay. Elizabeth feels smaller and more vulnerable than Booker. Instead of going all out on the offensive she focuses on stealth.
She can still use guns such as the hand cannon and shotgun but also brings along a crossbow. This is capable of firing three types of darts – tranquiliser, gas and noisemaker. The tranquiliser darts can put an enemy to sleep, the gas darts can knockout a group stood close together and noisemakers set off an alarm to distract enemies while you sneak past.
Elizabeth also gets to use four different vigors. Two that return are Possession and Old Man Winter. The two new ones are Ironsides which is a bullet absorbing shield and Peeping Tom which allows you to see enemies through walls and turn invisible. We found Peeping Tom to be the most useful of the four and relied on it for much of our playthrough.
Episode Two gives you more choices when getting around as there are multiple paths around areas and many doors to choose from. Some doors are locked and require lockpicks to bypass them. There are also vents to crawl through which help you get to places or bypass enemies. Like the rest of BioShock Infinite you can always tap up on the D-Pad to see the suggested route to your destination.
The story is again the strongest part of the game and Irrational have delivered another superb tale. Most impressive is the way they have managed to link the different games in the series to together. If you’re a big fan of the BioShock universe then Episode Two will answer many questions you have and leave you satisfied. We really can’t say a lot more about it without spoiling it.
It’s a better DLC pack than Episode One and also longer. There’s at least five hours of gameplay if you take your time to take it all in. There’s also a 1998 stealth only mode to attempt which is much tougher.
For BioShock fans the Burial at Sea Episode Two DLC is absolutely essential. Well played Irrational you will be missed.