Following a brief presentation on the single player game, we got our first look at the highly-anticipated multiplayer mode in Bioshock 2. The online side of the game is being developed by Digital Extremes (responsible for the PS3 version of the first game) and Allen Goode talked us through the free-for-all mode.Unlike the single player game, the multiplayer side of Bioshock 2 is set one year before the events of the first game as you take part in the “civil war” which brought about the fall of Rapture. Each player is assigned an “apartment” in Rapture which acts as a hub where you can customise your weapon load-out and plasmids. You are working for a company named Sinclair Solutions and are tasked with testing their various experiments with weapons and plasmids. You choose a game-type and enter a 2 “warzone” via your own personal bathysphere. As your employer rewards your efforts with a kind of XP system, the game employs a matchmaking system which assings you to a game based on your own level and the strength of the online connection, although Goode explained that the final release will support a party system to make sure you can play with your friends.We saw an area called Kashmir, based on an environment from the first game which feels instantly familiar, although the map layout is different. Each player has both weapons and plasmids at their disposal and thankfully there’s no equip delay, in order to “preserve the flow” of the multiplayer game. The plasmids we saw included the electrical bolt (which stuns enemies), Incinerate (which does exactly what it says on the tin, gradually depleting an opponent’s health over time once they’re set on fire) and the Winter plasmid which can freeze enemies to the spot.The multiplayer levels also feature Circus of Values machines which allow you to recharge your weapons and plasmids and you can also hack turrets (both gun and rocket types) which will target enemies for a set period of time. You’ll also be glad to know that the game’s iconic Big Daddies also feature in the online modes. A power-up will appear randomly on the map turning you into the diving-suited badass should you be lucky enough to pick it up, providing a significant advantage over your online foes. We only saw the free-for-all mode, although Goode confirmed the final release will feature two other modes: team deathmatch and another undisclosed mode.
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