Everybody knows I'm a sucker for that special genre of video game known as the First Person Shooter. The most imaginative and satisfying experience to be found in all the myriad of gamerealms is the FPS. HalfLife 2 is the standard by which all other FPS are to be judged, and Painkiller comes pretty darn close to achieving that standard. Now there is a new FPS that looks very promising: Bioshock.
My housemate owns an Xbox360 and was thoughtful enough the other day to show me the Bioshock demo. I was immediately blown away by the Art Deco aesthetic that pervades the game. The story involves an Ayn Randian utopia built at the bottom of the sea where something has gone terribly wrong. It looks like your standard inmates-take-over-the-asylum scenario, one into which you have to navigate your way with a nice array of weapons and talents.
But the scenery-! The city is absolutely dazzling for anyone with even a passing interest in the Art Deco style. It harkens to a mythical fifties, in which all the B-movie SciFi tropes are true: scientists have succeeded in improving humanity through genetic experiments, and the resulting "better world" is awash in tuxedoes and martinis and Gotham-style architecture. Think Dark City-meets-Atlantis.
This could be the next greatest FPS of all time, and hopefully will inspire a sequel, in which events go back to an even earlier era, the Belle Epoque.