BioShock Multiplayer: Capture The Sister

By John Walker on October 29th, 2009 at 8:00 am.

Boy, she's creepy.

There’s new BioShock 2 details – a new multiplayer mode called Capture The Sister. The latest trailer reveals this mode to be a peculiar version of capture the flag, where the flag is a struggling demonic-eyed little girl, fought over by the crazed mutants and giant robots of Rapture. Which is… something tabloid newspapers wouldn’t understand. Get her to one of the escape holes and you score a point for your team.

It’s hard to ignore the uncomfortable feeling watching a player grab the screaming child and run off with her. The role of the Sisters has always been contentious in BioShock, and it’s in keeping with the narrative of the world for it to work this way. It’s impressive to see multiplayer capturing something of the creepy horror of the main game, but cor – it’s not the most endearing of images. It’s a team-based mode, with one team attempting to get the Sisters to the vent, the other stopping them. Have a watch:

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25 Comments »

  1. Idle Threats and Bad Poetry says:

    “Uncomfortable”? Soft hearted Mr. Walker, are you always very good with children? This reminds me less of abduction and more of a case when the little brat girl doesn’t want to go with you–the father, brother, uncle, etc.–she wants to go with mommy instead.

    I did my share of screaming as a child, and it seems like Little Sister calms down quickly enough. I find the screaming hilarious.

    Err, does this make me a bad person?

    • Idle Threats and Bad Poetry says:

      PS– Is it just me, or does the cute educational clip seem tired and unfunny? I never thought they were funny, and now they seem old, but in the wrong sort of way.

  2. Jazmeister says:

    Bioshock 2 Multiplayer

    “…something tabloid newspapers wouldn’t understand.” -John Walker, RockPaperShotgun.com

  3. DJ Phantoon says:

    Neat.

    I keep forgetting Bioshock 2 will have multiplayer.

  4. Tull. says:

    Getting uncomfortable over this nonsense doesn’t make you “soft-hearted”. It makes you flat-out squeamish. Ugh. I hate squeamishness. :/

    And, yeah. The educational clips are getting a little clichéd at this point. But, oh well. The multiplayer looks fun.

  5. Springy says:

    That line of 2K logos at the end for all the different development studios is just eyeing up Digital Extremes for assimilation.

  6. Scalene says:

    I’m going to name my daughter Flag.

  7. Muzman says:

    I fucking called it! (and so did probably everyone else, but hey). Hilarious.

    There shouldn’t be any “light side” gameplay in this mode though. It should be two teams of splicers trying to get hold of her/them and upgrade themselves. (if it’s not already)

  8. hahaha, oktoberfest! says:

    http://i29.tinypic.com/x2182p.gif
    Like that? :D

  9. Ed says:

    “… something tabloid newspapers wouldn’t understand. ”
    I’m not sure I would either. But then I didn’t like Bioshock.

  10. Bhazor says:

    If the child didn’t just sit there and actually tried to stay alive/return to her Big Daddy this might be interesting, But it doesn’t so it isn’t.

    • Wisq says:

      I tend to agree.

      I do think the whole concept of BioShock multiplayer could indeed be interesting, but only to the degree that a typical Source mod is interesting, say. To actually stand out in my eyes, they need to harness the BioShock universe concepts to create some fun and unique gameplay mechanics — not just rely on the inherent marketing of “Look! It’s BioShock! But with multiple players!”.

      Sadly, it seems they’re doing the latter. Case in point: When I think “CTF using Little Sisters”, I imagine all the fun game mechanics that could stem from that. When 2K thinks “CTF using Little Sisters”, they (apparently) imagine a flag that screams at you as you lead it to an excessively long capture animation. Yeah, that sounds like fun.

  11. Dave Gates says:

    I’m really struggling with this. I understand that a little sister is now just a flag but that really doesn’t sit well with me. The reason that Bioshock didn’t offend me was beacause of the fact it was within a framing narative, terrible things happen in terrible situations. The thought that a GM child is being hoiked around in a sporting event just worries me slightly. I don’t know….

    • Wisq says:

      If the gameplay mode really is as shallow as the video suggests, then I feel like they’ve traded away substance for shock value. Which puts the whole thing somewhere around the level of that old Dragon Age trailer (pre-Hawaii-ification), i.e. “you may have a good game but you’re sure not selling it to me very well”.

      That said, I have no personal issues with the content itself. I think excessive gaming has made me immune to this sort of thing. :)

  12. Dave Gates says:

    I don’t know, this upsets me slightly. I’m not a knee jerk DailyMail type at all but this just seems odd. I’m aware that the little sister just basicaly a flag but the orginal had a framing narrative, terrible things happen in terrible places. The thought of a child being used for points in a sporting event just doesn’t sit with me well… hmmmm.

  13. Dave Gates says:

    Jesus, told me I had a 404 and brought it up anyway. You get my gist though. Apologies for repitition.

    • Wisq says:

      Yeah, there’s been a certain tendency for the site to give an “invalid response” (according to my local web proxy) and post the post anyway.

      In Firefox, I hit the back button, then the refresh button. Refreshing maintains the contents of the form, so my comment is still there if I have to resubmit. But it also typically shows me my posted comment, all good and not invalid-ified at all.

    • Dave Gates says:

      I’m going to get Firefox right now… if only because Bing is pissing me off. ;-)

  14. Tom says:

    Looks like fun to me.

  15. Samattack says:

    I was actually sort of hoping you had to dunk the little sister in the porthole.

  16. ZomBuster says:

    I think it looks really fun and it captures the feeling of the singleplayer game pretty good

    (enemies shouting at you, big daddies being big daddies etc)

  17. Lars Westergren says:

    As Wisq said – “you may have a good game but you’re sure not selling it to me very well”.

    However, I had a neat idea. Image that Bioshock 2, instead of a sequel (to a story that was pretty finished, in a place that was about to collapse and be filled with water anytime), was a prequel.

    An adventure game prequel to be precise (not as in “Rub items A and B together to solve illogical puzzle”, but a game where you primarily explored and talked to people). You would see Rapture in its full glory, filled with people and life. The beauty and optimism would be tainted because the player knows what will eventually happen. You would play, say, Anna Gustavsdottir or whatever her name was, the woman whose corpse you find, who tried to assassinate Ryan. You would meet some of the strong bit characters whose personality you only saw through audio recordings in the first game – the voice actor who worked for Cohen, the jewish couple with their daughter (pre-Little Sister).

    Starting as an idealist trying to help build a city based on Objectivist ideals – freedom, capitalism, human creativity, you would slowly find unsettling hints that not all is well. Some seem to take the übermench ideal more from Nietzsche and fascist territory, and as paranoia rises things start to unravel quickly.

    This game could also continue to explore the philosophical topics from the first game. Did Rapture fail because Ryan and others didn’t live up to their own high ideals, or from attack by outside infiltrators? Or is the ideology like communism good in paper but incompatible with human nature and always tragic if attempted in the real world?

  18. phil says:

    Eurogamer now have a new hands on for the single player up; http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/bioshock-2-hands-on

    The themepark, Lamb as antagonist, flooding, Big Sisters and lunging around like a 3 ton wolverine all sound simply super.

  19. Max says:

    Sure looks original. They made CTF except the flag yells at you. Sweet.

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