Yet another video interview with Bioshock: Infinite creative director Ken Levine has been released, this one focusing on companion character Elizabeth’s ability to open “tears” in space time. While previous trailers for the game have shown tiny glimpses of the ‘tears’ and how Elizabeth can manipulate them, this is gamers’ first opportunity to hear Levine speak on the topic in detail.
Essentially, due to scientific experimentation, Elizabeth has the ability to manipulate soft spots in time known as “tears” in order to either bring objects or even main character Booker DeWitt forward or backward in time. Items like gun caches or sky-line cars can be brought into the immediate game world to assist the player in dispatching members of the Vox Populi.
Of course, like any clever game mechanic, Elizabeth’s ability does have its limits. While at certain points in the game opening a “tear” will help push the narrative of Bioshock: Infinite forward, other moments will be purely gameplay focused. As such, it will be up to player to decide which “tears” Elizabeth should open before her ability “runs out.”
One specific moment seen in the Bioshock: Infinite E3 demo saw Booker and Elizabeth presented with several advantageous items that would only become available if Elizabeth were to bring them into the tangible world. Each of the items – from an ammo cache to a large carriage – provide significant gameplay advantages, but not all of them could be utilized at once. It’s up to the player how they wish to approach each confrontation, and thereby create their own unique game experience.
Check out the trailer below to learn even more about Bioshock: Infinite‘s new gameplay mechanic:
Of course Elizabeth’s ability to manipulate time is not only a gameplay mechanic, but it is a storyline accelerator as well. It is because Elizabeth has this “gift” that Booker is brought to the world of Columbia to protect her from the two warring factions that want control over her.
We imagine that Elizabeth’s interactions with “tears” will play a huge part in the game, both in terms of spicing up the gameplay and furthering the story. It might be a ways off from releasing, but we can’t wait to see all that Levine and his team at Irrational have in store for gamers.
What do you think of the game’s use of “tears” as a storyline and gameplay device? What other ways would you like to see this time manipulation be used?
Bioshock: Infinite is scheduled to release in the first half of 2012 on the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC.