Get me out of here!
Trying to get out of Rapture is the goal but as you play the game you will get contacted by Ryan, Atlas, Tannenbaum and others. For the most part these characters are all off-camera which gives BioShock more of a creepy factor than it would have if they were all front and center all the time. The game also gives out back story by letting you listen in on tapes that you collect throughout the game. It's rare that a game has solid voice casting but BioShock is the exception with excellent work from all of the actors who portray the various citizens of Rapture. Mention must also be made of the game's use of genuine 40's and 50's music which is played throughout the levels.
BioShock uses Epic's Unreal Engine 3 but as we have seen using an advanced graphics engine is no good if you don't have the artists to really use it to its full potential. The team at 2K Boston/Australia are no slouches in the art department; BioShock looks like no other game ever made. The art-deco and 1940's style of illustration are used to great effect in the game and you never get the feeling that you are going through the same corridor over and over again like most first person shooters do with their art and level design. The richness of the artwork will make you look around a lot to catch details that you might miss on first glance, but there is a fair bit to see including the trademark satirical humor.
There are some flaws in BioShock. The game's hacking portion (where you switch around tubes to "hack" into things like vending machines, safes and other devices) got a little tiresome to use after a bit and we discovered that the benefits were mostly minimal. A couple of the game's various missions got a little tedious as we had to collect items to create devices or achieve goals. The game also has a camera that lets you take pictures of enemies that supposedly improve your attacks once they are shot. However we found that taking pictures in the midst of a firefight was too much hassle. We think you will quickly forget about taking pictures as much as we did.
These small flaws are just that: small. BioShock grabbed us immediately upon playing it and we didn't want to stop until we were finished...and then we wanted to start playing again to find out if a different set of moral choices created different results. There's isn't any multiplayer in BioShock but there is still some replay value to be had in the game.