[Review] Bioshock: The Collection – Nintendo Switch

Written by Kieran Fifield

Introducing: Bioshock: The Collection review

The Nintendo Switch is a phenomenal platform for developers and publishers alike to bring their works to, not just an incredibly active marketplace, but also to gamer’s who may not have necessarily experienced their titles.

This is certainly the case with the Bioshock Collection. Included in this package is the entire trilogy of games, along with all of their respective DLC. That’s a lot of bang for your buck. As the game’s are available individually digitally, from the Nintendo eshop, they have been reviewed on their own merits. Should you wish to just check out a single offering, scroll down for the link.

Little Sister’s legacy

The physical copy of Bioshock: The Collection contains the amuse-bouche for each game on the cart. Beyond that, some rather sizeable downloads are required to experience the content in its entirety. I’m aware that this has irked some of the online community, the fervent members of the Switch Corps feeling somewhat discombobulated by this, but having experienced every modicum of media present on the Collection, I honestly didn’t mind. There is a STAGGERING amount of gameplay available throughout the collection and in terms of minutes per MB, it’s a great value package. On top of that, you get three game icons off of a single cart on your Nintendo Switch dashboard, which was nice!

Big Daddy’s burden

The porting of this Collection onto the Nintendo Switch has been handled by Virtuoso, and their work must be commended. Every thing from load times to performance is top-notch. The games run at a consistent 30FPS, which is certainly amicable and they looks as good in handheld as they do docked. Discovering Rapture while the wife chilled to Netflix, solo (double entendre?) has been a personal highlight of what has otherwise been a pretty miserable 2020. So far.

As mentioned earlier, the downloads required are large, but what this translates to in-game is a very presentable package. As well as the aforementioned visual performance, the sound design in each and every Bioshock offering is marvellous and whether you play in handheld or docked, I can’t stress enough how important a good set of headphones or home entertainment system are. If the sound files would have had to have been compressed, resulting in a loss of fidelity, to get Bioshock: The Collection Complete on Cart, having played through it and experienced the euphoric audio firsthand, I wouldn’t be happy with that compromise.

Nihilistic narrative

Aside from its standing as a competent collection of FPS games, the Bioshock titles also provide some of the most wonderful story-telling in gaming and weave disconcerting narrative and lore together in the most mesmerising manner. To experience every facet of this most opulent series on Nintendo’s humble hybrid is a sheer delight and despite pacing issues in Bioshock 2 Remastered (likely caused by jumping straight in after finishing the inaugural offering), the combined 50 hours of time that I spent discovering and then re-discovering Rapture are amongst my fondest gaming memories. That’s not to mention Bioshock Infinite and Columbia, a title that flips the series in its head and refreshes and refines in equal measure. The cast of crazed, charismatic characters introduced in the Bioshock universe are as iconic and inimitable as (Big-N heavy hitters aside) any in recent memory and with a fourth entry in the works, likely as a next-gen offering, the thought of more Bioshock has me both figuratively and literally salivating.

Columbia’s Conclusion

Bioshock: The Collection is, simply put, exemplary. All three games in the collection shine on their own merits, and with all the DLC included, provide dozens of hours of inimitable story telling. While quite linear in nature, the Bioshock titles have been designed to allow the player the choice to play how they want.

We all make choices, but in the end, our choices make us.

Andrew Ryan

Pros

  • A fittingly obscene amount of content
  • A quality port
  • A chance for many Nintendo gamer’s to experience an iconic game series
  • Uncompressed sound files allow utter immersion

Cons

  • Not Complete on cart (if you’re that way inclined)
  • Inside of physical edition is just white – a missed opportunity given the franchise’s stunning aesthetics
  • Playing the sequel title, directly after the original takes away from the intrigue

Verdict

Bioschock: The complete collection is compulsory gaming. Now, would you kindly stop reading this and go and pick up a copy?

4.5/5

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