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Bioshock Infinite’s trailer analysed


For an announcement trailer, Ken Levine has been remarkably forthcoming with information on Bioshock Infinite. Still, for every question answered about what the “Icarus” project was, an infinite number more have been raised. X360 casts a discerning eye over the two minute Bioshock Infinite trailer to pick out five snapshots of no small significance.

1) The 1893 Chicago World Fair (0:39)

Booker DeWitt is pulled out of a fish tank and thrown out of window seconds after this, but the more observant among you might have noted the title of the ornament that as Bioshock fans, we initially assumed to be a model of Rapture. The 1893 Chicago World World Fair was a massive international event whose design was based on the idealistic views of what several prominent architects at the time thought a city should look like. Significantly, the fair was also known as the World’s Columbian Exposition and undoubtedly the design of Bioshock Infinite’s Colombia was undoubtedly inspired by the same classic European architecture.

2) Big Daddy’s back? (0:49)

What throws Booker DeWitt out of the window and down into the sky city is open to debate. Apart from its relative size and strength, this thing seemed more Big Daddy than human, which immediately raises a host of questions: is it a kind of Big Daddy? What is the big pulsating heart-like organ you can see in its fish-bowl “face”, what’s its beef with Booker and what put Booker in this precarious position in the first place, considering he has fairly impressive supernatural powers at his disposal?

3) Propaganda (1:20)

As Booker slides off the side of an airship, you get a view of the banner ads on the sides of several tower blocks. One advertises the jingoistic ethos of Columbia, “It is our holy duty to protect them from the foreign hordes and the traitorous anarchists”. Similar to Rapture, the sky city was apparently erected to keep out whoever out of sync with whatever its masters consider appropriate. There’s undoubtedly some kind of eugenics involved here, considering the the slogan on the second poster “Burden not Columbia with your Chaff”, but who or what the chaff is however, remains to be seen.

4) The new Fontaine? (1:28)

Who exactly is this man conducting the gramaphone music to an unseen orchestra with his back to Booker as he floats past the window? Could this be Columbia’s own version of the puppet master, Frank Fontaine?

5) The love interest

This is Elizabeth, the girl Booker has been sent to rescue and is now trying to escape the city with. Apart from the question of what the rose flower-power she uses to save Booker from his fall is (some kind of unique ability the two share?), this snapshot puts the whole trailer into perspective: if Booker had no powers to deal with the Big Daddy and Elizabeth is still trapped, then this must be from the start of the game. 2K already describes Booker as a “former Pinkerton agent”, so what has he done to be cast out of the agency and how does he survive his fall to fight back?