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BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea - Episode 2

By acharris7707-04-2014
Grawne (editor)

The Defence

Irrational Games
2K Games
Action, Shooter
Release Date:

The Prosecution

Intel Quad Core
AMD equivalent
Nvidia GeForce GTX 560
AMD Radeon HD 6950
4 GB
30 GB
10, 11

The Case

Bioshock Infinite was a great game. It had stunning visuals, a good storyline, and very memorable characters. The designers created a realistic atmosphere that immersed you in the game world. After Infinite, the first episode of the Burial at Sea DLC was released. In it, the player revisits Rapture, but this time from the perspective of Booker DeWitt. With Episode 2 of Burial at Sea, the final instalment in the story, Irrational looks to bow out in style.

The Trial

Burial at Sea – Episode 2 adheres to the same recipe as the first two instalments, and it is nice to see developers actually sticking to the “If it is not broke, don’t fix it” philosophy. This final chapter picks up where the previous left off. Episode 2 sees Elizabeth returning to Rapture a changed woman on a mission to save a young girl named Sally.

Oh hello there. Will you be my friend?

Oh hello there. Will you be my friend?

Episode 2 takes a different approach that to Episode 1 and feels much more complete overall. Whereas the first was short on gameplay (around an hour or so) this one offers 3-4 hours of enjoyment. In place of the action-driven approach of the previous episode there’s a new stealth-style system with survival horror elements. Being quiet turns out to be quite both fun, and something of a challenge, as Elizabeth is wearing heels, and can be heard from a mile away. To reduce your chances of being detected, you either crouch or find a carpet to walk on when sneaking up on an unsuspecting enemy to perform a melee attack.

Ammo for the original guns, like the hand cannon and shotgun, is in very limited supply throughout Rapture. Thankfully, a new weapon makes a grand entrance. Elizabeth finds a crossbow capable of shoot tranquiliser, gas or noisemaker arrows. You also have new Plasmids available which give you the ability to become invisible or see through walls. The new stealth tactics make it so that you can no longer destroy Big Daddies – you can however distract them or trick them into going on a killing spree for you. In addition to the Big Daddies, some of the new areas house turrets constantly on the lookout for unfamiliar targets, namely you. Splicers, one of the series’ oldest enemies make another appearance in the DLC - but instead of being based on those from the original game, they’re same opponents you faced in Infinite. It’s a shame, because the Splicers of Bioshock were much more unpredictable. Thankfully, they’re still fun to kill.

Lock-picking plays a major role in Episode 2, and there’s a sort-of mini-game involved in getting through locked doors. When you pick a lock, an expanded model of the mechanism appears. To open the door, you need only hit a tumbler. Red tumblers open the door but trigger an alarm, sending enemies your way, while “neutral” uncolored tumblers open the door without issue. Blue tumblers open the door without sounding an alarm, and also rewards you with a noisemaker bolt.

One hell of a party...

One hell of a party...

While the visuals, audio and gameplay remains largely the same, Rapture features the same stunning artwork as it did in Episode 1. It is just a shame that we never really get to see Rapture in all its pre-fall glory. You do get to revisit Columbia, but only briefly. Episode 2’s final addition is a new mode, “1998”, in which gamers must complete the entire chapter using non-lethal force. This adds a bit of challenge to the game, especially with the gun turrets that can only be destroyed by shotgun blast.

The Verdict

Bioshock Infinite: Burial at Sea – Episode 2 is a great way for Irrational Games to say farewell. While it might not be perfect, it plays better than Episode 1. The stealth system might not be to everyone taste considering Infinite’s gun battles, but it does really make the game more interesting. The final chapter does the series justice and fans of it won’t be disappointed.

Case Review

  • We Can Play with Her: Finally, Elizabeth is a playable character.
  • Be Sneaky: The stealthy gameplay makes it fun to hide.
  • Straight as an Arrow: Crossbow and melee attacks are more useful than guns.
  • Once Upon a Time: Good storyline that explains Elizabeth’s role.
  • Enchantment under the Sea: Would have been nice to see Rapture Pre-fall.
  • Needs the Original: Splicers AI like in the original BioShock would have been more fun.
Score: 4.5/5
We finally get to play as Elizabeth.


After playing as Mr. DeWitt in the first episode of Burial at Sea, it’s time for a change of character. You now play as the much lighter and more fragile Elizabeth. She cannot just tank her way through the enemies and must use stealth to survive. There are new game mechanics such as enemies spotting you or hearing the sounds you make. Carpets on the floor make you silent, while walking on shards of broken glass will attract enemies very quickly. A new “Peeping Tom” plasmid is a very helpful addition for the stealth component of the game – this is made by combining “wallhack” and invisibility in a single syringe. The weapon selection is more limited as well, but there is a lot of versatility in the new crossbow. There are different arrows for purposes such as distraction, stun, and wide area sleeping gas.

Episode 2 has added some unexpected variety into the environments while revisiting familiar locations. It is especially interesting to see the event recorded in one of the original BioShock diaries to unfold before your own eyes. It is worth it to explore the environments around you both to get more snippets of the backstory, as well as to find useful updates for your plasmids. The music and sounds fit very well and contribute to a memorable atmosphere of Episode 2. In terms of the story, this final DLC continues the trend from the first episode and the ending of Infinite. The story is quite convoluted and many points are hard to understand in the light of two previous endings. Still it is a final epilogue of the whole BioShock franchise and manages to close the story in its own way.

Overall, the main reason to play Burial at Sea – Episode 2 is getting the last ending of BioShock. Its stealth-focused gameplay noticeably deviates from all previous games and it does not excel at it. However, the atmosphere of Bioshock is still there and acts as the most important attraction. While getting only one of Burial at Sea episodes is technically an option, it is not one worth taking. Each has their own imperfections, so it is either an all or nothing deal.

Score: 3.5/5
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