If there's one game that manages to stand out from the crowd of early 2013's stellar releases, it has to be BioShock Infinite. In the works for several years and delayed quite often, the game finally came out late last month to a number of outstanding reviews and above-average sales. The game also came quite a bit of storytelling as only Ken Levine and his team at Irrational Games can deliver.
BioShock Infinite also has quite the ending. People are still talking about it, wondering what's so cryptic about it and debating if it even makes sense. It was only inevitable that the game would come to Spoiler Alert, where we would reveal the finale and maybe try to hint at exactly what's happening. Regardless of what side of the fence you are on with it, you have to admit it's a one-of-a-kind conclusion.
So let's get right into it – here's are the spoilers for BioShock Infinite. Of course, if you haven't played the game yet, we highly advise you do that first.
After hopping into a special lighthouse that will take him to Columbia, Booker Dewitt finds himself baptized in a church before roaming into the city itself. In Columbia he sees a flyer warning about the "False Prophet" with the initials AD on his right hand (which Booker has). During a public "lottery" where the winner can throw apples at a white male and black female couple, Booker is discovered thanks to those initials. Police officers threaten him with a Skyhook weapon, but he manages to get the jump on them and uses as a melee tool to defeat them.
Following that, Booker picks up a number of Vigors and weapons that help him fight Columbia's forces as he pushes on to Monument Island. In the statue shaped like an angel he rescues Elizabeth, a girl who was being kept in captivity. Upon freeing her, a giant mechanical creature called the Songbird attempts to capture them and destroys part of the island in the process. The two escape and manage to take over an airship originally bound for Paris. However, Elizabeth discovers that Booker lied to her and intends to take her to New York City to "settle the debt". She knocks him out.
When Booker comes to, he finds the ship has been commandeered by the Vox Populi, an underground group fighting against Comstock, the ruler of Columbia. Daisy Fitzroy, the leader of the group, offers Booker the ship again if he can recover a shipment of weapons for the partisan fighters.
As he reteams with Elizabeth (who reluctantly accepts his company as a means to an end ) they to the factory section of Columbia owned by Jeremiah Fink known as Finkton. It's here that Booker learns more about Elizabeth's "tearing" ability, allowing her to open up alternative universes with ease. They converse briefly over her missing pinky finger, a minor point that is important to her powers. They journey to one universe where he was a martyr and the direct cause of war between the Vox Populi and the Columbia's Founders, somewhat tying in to the cryptic ending. When Fitzroy finds out Booker is alive, she turns to Vox Populi against him for “complicating the narrative” of his sacrifice. Fitzroy executes Fink and Elizabeth ends up killing Fitzroy when she threatens to kill Fink's young son.
They regain the airship and head towards New York, but the Songbird forces the ship to crash. As they search for another means of escape, they learn more about Comstock and why he held Elizabeth captive. He was grooming her to be a leader for the city, and had the enigmatic Lutece twins build the Island to keep her in captivity. He then plotted to murder them and his wife to keep the truth hidden, blaming the Vox Populi for their deaths.
While attempting to reach the Comstock House to find a means to stop the Songbird, they're attacked by the flying mechanical menace and Elizabeth is taken back into captivity with Booker in hot pursuit. Making his way through Comstock House, he discovers an older Elizabeth, who opened up an alternative universe in the future to talk with him. After going through years of torture, she has become Comstock's perfect heir and unleashed war on the world below as a result. She insists Booker stop this future from happening, and gives him the power to control the Songbird before sending him back in time.
Booker then finds and saves Elizabeth, and pursues Comstock to his airship, the Hand of the Prophet. He Elizabeth confront Comstock and Booker angrily drowns the so-called prophet in a baptismal water basin. They call upon the Songbird to hold off the remaining Vox Populi forces, then send it after the Siphon to destroy it. He then proceeds to destroy the Siphon that the Lucete twins built, granting Elizabeth full use of her powers and find out what happened to her finger. The shockwave of the Siphon causes Booker to lose control of Songbird and the beast heads right toward them. Elizabeth stops Songbird by opening a tear to transport the three of them to another location – Rapture from the original BioShock games – where the Songbird succumbs to the water pressure and Elizabeth and Booker transport back to the surface.
Now here's where things get interesting. The two head back to the lighthouse (from the beginning of the game) and find alternative versions of themselves scattered throughout. Several universes have opened up as a result of their actions, including one where Booker learns about the "AD" initials. In an effort to "wipe away the debt," he gave up his infant daughter, Anna DeWitt, a choice he immediately wanted to take back. She is transported through a tear by the Lutece twins and Comstock, losing her finger in the process. It's then realized that Anna has been raised into Elizabeth by Comstock, and her missing finger means she now in two universes at once, which lets her open up the tears.
Despite what Booker did to Comstock, he still exists in various universes, and he feels the only way to really finish him is to kill him as a child and prevent his existence. However, he is instead transported to right after Battle of Wounded Knee, where he rejected the baptism. In another universe, he accepted the baptism... and became the fanatical Comstock in the process. Following that, Comstock arranged for the abduction of Anna so that he would have a blood heir to Columbia, since the use of the tears to perceive the future had rendered him sterile.
Alternative versions of Elizabeth then appear from other dimensions, and Booker, seeing how much chaos has come from his decisions, allows them to drown him in the creek to avoid Comstock from ever existing. As a result, all but one version of Elizabeth disappear, and the screen fades to black.
Following this, Booker reawakens back in his apartment from years ago. He calls out to Anna and opens the door to her room, and the screen again fades to black.
Very cryptic, but an astounding ending to a fantastic tale by Levine and company. One has to wonder what they'll be up to next…
Bioshock Infinite is available now for PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.