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2K gives us a BioShock figurine replacement update

If you signed up for 2K Games' Big Daddy figurine replacement program, then listen up, because (unlike our mini-update) we have super concrete details straight from 2K regarding your replacement figure.

In an email sent out to those who registered to get their broken Big Daddy fixed, 2K says that production of the figures took longer than expected and was the cause of the months and months of delays in the replacement program. But, good news is that "in order to speed things up, 2K Games is eliminating the step in which you are required to return the broken figurine". You read correctly, you'll be able to keep your already broken figurine AND get another not-so-broken one shipped to you. Nice move 2K, nice move. The email also confirms that, in the next two weeks, they'll be shipping out the replacement figurines and promised art book to those who signed up for the program before November 12th. 2K's update email can be read in its entirety after the break.

[Thanks, dubbalubagis]

Continue reading 2K gives us a BioShock figurine replacement update

Levine talks BioShock DLC and what's to come

In the latest issue of Games for Windows Magazine, 2K Boston head honcho Ken Levine talks about what's in store for BioShock as far as downloadable content goes and what they're already working on. Levine confirms that their studio is working on new content, but will not be adding new narrative storyline saying that "I'm not a really big fan of expanding things just by linearly adding to the experience, adding a new campaign, as much as I am of enhancing the original experience and adding replayability to that experience". Levine then goes on to say that he feels that BioShock's overall combat can be expanded upon and that numerous plasmids were cut during development, so they could be brought back in the form of DLC.

Nobody knows when the expanded BioShock content will land on the Marketplace or what specifically 2K Boston has planned, but what we do know is that we won't be getting our hopes up for an expanded BioShock storyline or additional campaign missions. Though, we're simple people and would be happy with a few new plasmids.

[Thanks, xenocidic]

By golly, it's a Etch A Sketched Big Daddy

Only rarely does one stumble upon great artwork that touches them to their core and pulls out emotions that are so deeply embedded. The kind of art that truly inspires greatness and makes one want to scream out loud "I love etched BioShock artwork!" And the picture you see above, made us say just that.

The mysterious and ever so talented Etch A Sketchist created the masterpiece above using his Etch A Sketch, sketching what looks to be the cover art of BioShock, but re-mastered and completed with two white knobs. We must say that his work on the Gears of War scene that we saw a while back was pretty spot on, but this BioShock masterpiece takes the cake. We've never felt the urge to hug an Etch A Sketch as much as we do right now ... we love our BioShock, oh yes we do.

[Via The Cult of Rapture]

Slam dunk! NBA 2K8 demo on the XBLM

For those of you who are suffering from acute need-to-play-a-sports-game disorder then you'll be relieved to know that you can find the cure on the Xbox Live Marketplace. New this morning and ready to download in all Xbox Live regions is a NBA 2K8 demo weighing in at 325MBs and features an orange basketball and a few hoops. Actually, we can't even sure the demo features a basketball at all, because we have yet to download it and Major Nelson's demo description is sort of blank. But we're sure sports gamers will download it no matter, who needs a demo description anyway? So ... yeah. NBA 2K8 demo on the XBLM, download away!

BioShock is Cliffy's GOTY

Cliffy B has been busy busily working up a storm in North Carolina as of late, probably working on a super secret project (ahem, Gears of War 2). But all that busyness doesn't stop him from giving his thoughts on the industry's blockbuster games and giving out his official Cliffy B game of the year honors to none other than BioShock.

Over on, Mr. Cliff gives his brutally honest yet professional take on BioShock discussing the good (art design, story narration and evil dudes who make you feel bad about yourself) along with the bad (somewhat sloppy telekinesis and annoying bees who don't make honey). Overall though, Cliffy thinks that this Unreal Engine 3 based game deserves game of the year honors for perfecting the blend of gameplay and immersive story that all next gen game should strive for. But then again it's only September and Cliffy has yet to play Halo 3, so we'll see if he retracts his GOTY honors next week. We kid, we kid Cliffy, BioShock is good times and we all know it (ahem, Halo 3).

[Via Joystiq]

BioShock sets download and sales records, sequels to follow?

BioShock has been the hotness ever since it released last month and we're packing the digits and numbers to prove it. During a 2K Games investor call, 2K chairman Strauss Zelnick confirmed that BioShock has already sold 1.5 million copies worldwide, is on track to become one of the best selling games ever and that the XBLM BioShock demo has set new download records for a nine day period. Impressive, no? Zelnick then went on to plant a seed of hope stating that the BioShock franchise might adopt the Grand Theft Auto business model of having a new game release every two years. Yup, it just might be possible that we'll be harvesting (or saving) little sisters every few years for the rest of our lives ... oh joy!

It's more than obvious 2K is pleased with what Irrational 2K Boston has done with BioShock and if sequels get churned out every few years we just hope the the quality and the storylines are equally amazing as the original. Congrats 2K Boston!

[Via Joystiq]

BioShock title update isn't all that exciting

The next time you plop in BioShock be prepared to experience the phenomena known as an automatic title update. That's right, 2K Games just released a title update for good old BioShock and, to be honest, it's a rather yawn inducing update at that. The title update is more or less a general maintenance fix the helps improve the stability of game saves, audio fixes, some AI behaviors and all that jazz. So, no new plasmids, no new features, and no big bug squash. It's simply a vanilla flavored update.

Oblivion's Shivering Isles coming to retail

Bethesda has announced that Shivering Isles, the expansion to the life-owning RPG Oblivion, will soon be making its retail debut. Previously available only as a download on Xbox Live Marketplace, the retail disc will offer up both the Shivering Isles expansion as well as another piece of downloadable content, Knights of the Nine. As we've reported before, Shivering Isles offers dozens of hours of additional gameplay with new areas, items, spells, enemies, and ingredients. The disc is set to hit retailers next month. No price has been set at this time, but we imagine the pricing will be on par with the downloadable version.

If you've yet to step into the world of Oblivion, you might want to wait until the Game of the Year Edition ships this month. The GOTY Edition includes all the downloadable content for Oblivion including Shivering Isles and Knights of the Nine. For the rest of us (especially those without Knights of the Nine) the Shivering Isles retail disc might be a pretty good deal.

[Via Gamertag Radio]

Update: The Game of the Year Edition does not include all downloadable content. It includes only Shivering Isles and Knights of the Nine.

Rumor: New BioShock plasmids already exist

Those sneaky file searchers over at the 2K Games forums have uncovered a few text strings embedded in the PC version of BioShock's game code which hint at a new set of plasmids coming our way. After looking through the game's install files for a reference to a PC game editor, forum member Zemlor stumbled across a reference to a piece of content called "PlasmidPack1". The description for the content reads; "Having concluded clinical trials on four new Genetic Improvements, Ryan Industries is proud to announce the general release of their newest products:" and lists four new plasmids including Machine Buster, Vending Expert, Sonic Boom and Eve Savor. Not only that, but the game code also lists various unused plasmid types and descriptions. Exciting, no?

But don't get overly pumped just yet, because it seems that the new plasmid content needs to be activated via some sort of online key. Also, this code was found on the PC version and could simply be "junk code". Though, we're the gambling types and are willing to bet that new plasmids will be hitting the XBLM in the near future and (fingers crossed) for free. Because if we have to pay for them and they are already on the BioShock game disc awaiting an online "activation code" to unlock, then we'll be a few bitter fanboys. Not allowing us to use certain content that's already on the disc for the sole reason of charging us down the road makes us furious. Don't do it 2K ... don't do it.

[Thanks, Matt]

Rein uses BioShock to praise Unreal Engine

X3F readers may recall that Silicon Knights recently started a legal tiff with Epic Games concerning the Unreal Engine 3, which runs Silicon Knights' latest project Too Human. Not long after Silicon Knights made their issues known, other developers spoke publicly about their relationships with Epic (both good and bad). Yes, things looked sour for the Unreal Engine 3, and along comes BioShock as a shining beacon of Unreal success. Epic's Mark Rein, speaking to Develop, has praised the game as an excellent example of the work that can be done with the Unreal Engine 3. Rein noted that Epic is always open to developer feedback and happy to help them "take the most advantage of our technology."

It will be interesting to see if the success of an Unreal-powered game like BioShock will have an effect on the battle between Silicon Knights and Epic.

[Via Joystiq]

Work at Valve? No BioShock for you!

We can hear the classic conversation now. "Can I have some BioShock? Pleeeease!" "Not until you've finished your Orange Box." "Aw, nuts!"

In an interview with CVG, Valve's Gabe Newell made it known that BioShock has been officially banned from the Valve offices. Is it part of some company policy that employees must not touch a competitors product? Nope, BioShock was banned in order to assure that the team properly finishes up work on The Orange Box. In Newell's words: "We had to ban BioShock from our offices," adding, "Nobody gets to play it until Orange Box is done - that's our reward to ourselves as a company; everyone gets a copy of BioShock." Wow. We can tell you right now, BioShock is definitely a danger to anyone's productivity, so we understand the decision. Hang in there Valve! We know you can do it, and trust us, BioShock is worth it.

[Via Joystiq]

Sign up to have your broken Big Daddy replaced

For those of you who've purchased the BioShock limited edition, opened it up and found your Big Daddy figurine in a broken state ... listen up.

2K Games has just launched a website allowing broken Big Daddy owners to request a new replacement figurine. To register for a new Big Daddy, head on over to the BioShock Support page, fill in the information and soon you'll be shipped a box. One you receive the pre-paid box, place your broken figure inside, send it out and once they receive it they'll speedily ship you a copy of the BioShock art book "Breaking the Mold". When new figurines are available (it'll be a bit, because they had to manufacture new ones) they'll ship you a brand new Big Daddy for you to hold and love. It's easy as pie!

True, you'll have to be separated from your Big Daddy figurine for a while, but you're gaining a new art book and a pristine figurine with all the shipping and handling paid for. Nice job 2K, we knew you cared about us.

Rapture's musical melodies await your download

When playing through BioShock you can't help but notice the intense, emotional and ever so fitting orchestral score that chimes in throughout the game. These subtle musical tracks help set the mood and make your visit to Rapture all the more immersive. And today 2K Games is making it so you can carry these lovely orchestral scores wherever you. Over on the Cult of Rapture, the 2K Games crew is thanking the BioShock community by offering up all twelve BioShock orchestral tracks as a free download. Simply click the read link below to download 23MBs of pure BioShock musical bliss. Now we just have to figure out why exactly 2K didn't offer these tracks on the limited edition soundtrack CD.

Like BioShock? Thank Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand isn't a name you typically associate with videogames. At least, we never thought it would come to pass before someone finally green-lit the long awaited The Fountainhead: The Video Game. And yet, Wired has taken up the headline that "BioShock owes more to Ayn Rand than DOOM." Given that the pursuit of personal happiness is the ultimate goal of Rand's philosophy, we'd be hard-pressed to disagree. After all, we can't imagine anything making you happier than escaping Rapture alive, right? Just remember, from a Big Daddy's point of view, nothing would make him happier than seeing you dead.

In all seriousness, the point of the article is that there is more to BioShock than shooting everything that moves. In fact, if you've been keeping up with the game, you'll know that it is actually heavily influenced by Rand. Still, if you find yourself with an unexplainable desire to become an Objectivist after playing BioShock, now you know why.

Borderlands on the 360 will require a HDD

Concluding a Games Convention demo of the 2008 release Borderlands (that Diablo meets Mad Max shooter), the president of Gearbox Randy Pitchford confirmed with 1UP that when the game releases, it will require a HDD if played on the Xbox 360. Pitchford is fully aware of Microsoft's opinion on HDD required games, but still sticks to his studios' development guns stating that Borderlands needs a caching HDD due to the unique nature of the game and all its randomly generated missions of randomness. Honestly, we're just curious to see how Microsoft will handle games and developers when talk of HDD required games begins to bubble up. Cue death stare!

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