Bioshock

App review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
Bioshock App Poster Image
Flawed adaptation of a popular, violent game.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 14+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of Play

Like many app shooters, the game's interface is not especially responsive, which is problematic, given the game's fast pace. Battles can quickly be lost as you struggle to find and aim at your enemy. 

Violence

Plenty of shooting, gore, and blood, including the option to kill mutated little girls. You can use regular weapons including shotguns, machine guns, grenades, and crossbows, as well as special powers, thanks to Plasmids, including incineration, insect swarm, ice blast, lightning strike, and more. Some of the puzzle solving is about how to kill your enemy, such as giving enemies a fatal electric shock by using your lightning-strike power on water on which they're standing.

Sex

The game contains a strip club that's advertised throughout various levels. There is no sexual activity, but at one point you will see the ghost of a brutally murdered stripper lying on a bed.

Language

Examples include "f--k," "s--t," "goddammit," "hell," "bastard," "son of a bitch," and "piss."

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

You can drink alcohol in the game, which affects your vision and performance, as well as shoot up with a needle to obtain special powers. There also are advertisements for smoking.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Bioshock is the app adaptation of the extremely popular console game. It's loaded with graphic violence and gore, foul language, and the controversial option to harvest "Little Sisters," mutated 10-year-old girls who extract a coveted fluid called "Adam" from dead people. The moral dilemmas of the original game are intact. In fact, this is a complete port of the original, with no material left out, though the graphics are of a much lower quality. It is absolutely a game designed for adults, not children.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Teen, 14 years old Written byClandestine May 4, 2015

Okay for Mature teens

The smoking has bad effects on the player
Teen, 16 years old Written bySalsander April 3, 2015

Visual Downgrades = Less Dark Game

I found off-screen violence to be more concerning than actual combat. Dead bodies can be found covered in absurd amounts of blood. This is especially evident in... Continue reading

What's it about?

Players walk using a virtual thumbstick on the right side of the screen and look around their environments with one on the left. In fire fights, they must quickly alternate between using special powers and traditional weapons by pressing the appropriate button on the right side of the screen -- and reload or crouch using additional buttons on the left. It makes for a very crowded screen and an often confusing experience. 

Is it any good?

There's really no question as to whether BIOSHOCK is a great game. It is. The 2007 original set a new standard for action games. The question is: Can the game survive the transition to mobile? The answer, unfortunately, is not especially well. 

Although the game still poses wonderful moral tests and tells an absolutely captivating story, it does so with a significantly reduced graphical fidelity and an absolutely terrible control scheme. Navigating Rapture, the fictional world you explore, is a chore -- and fighting battles (which you do regularly) is difficult, thanks to fast-moving enemies and clumsy virtual thumbpads and an array of on-screen buttons. In addition, the game's load times are overly long, making you wait a long time for levels that ultimately disappoint anyone who has seen the game on another platform. Newcomers to the game might find something to like here (if they can overlook the control issues), but fans of the original who are hoping to recreate the excitement they felt the first time around will only find frustration. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about ways people are manipulated, sometimes without knowing it. 

  • Families also can talk about when to stand and fight and when to walk away. 

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Price: $14.99
  • Pricing structure: Paid
  • Release date: August 28, 2014
  • Category: Action Games
  • Size: 1650.00 MB
  • Publisher: 2K Games
  • Version: 1.0.5
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 7.1 or later

For kids who love action and adventure

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