BIOSHOCK: PROJECT PARKSIDE (Top Secret Studio/2K Games – ??? – ???) – One of the biggest rumors circulating around the upcoming E3 is the possible announcement of the newest installment to the Bioshock franchise — one of the most beloved shooter franchises of the last decade. There’s no question that an announcement of a follow-up to Infinite would set the video game community into a frenzy.
Little is known about a “Bioshock IV” right now, and with Borderlands 3 having recently been revealed– the odds seem even further unlikely. But, it has been over six years since Bioshock: Infinite was released so anything’s possible. So much of the gaming landscape has changed since then. As a mark for the series, my biggest hope for this “Project Parkside” will be for Obsidian (or whoever winds up at the healm) to avoid modern trends that too many developers seem to be aiming for (Open World over linearity) and putting everything behind paywalls.
But based on decade-long trends I have some predictions: it will be a sandbox title with.. paywalls. Of course this can only hurt the great lineage of Bioshock, since more development hours can only equate to fitting more hours into the game than care for the story. As a series best known for its deep and philosophical narratives, I’d hate to see Bioshock 4 get bogged down because the developers — rumored to be either Microsoft’s newly purchased Obsidian or former employees of Mafia 3‘s Hangar 13 — are trying to squeeze in another fetch-quest on the map. For the franchise’s sake, let’s hope the rich storytelling wins out.