2K announced today that Irrational Games, developers of Bioshock Infinite, will feature a old (but new) play style “1999 Mode”.
1999 mode is inspired by the days when games were referred to as more challenging, and will include changes that will not be experienced during the normal campaign, regardless of difficulty level.
“We want to give our oldest and most committed fans an option to go back to our roots,” quoted Ken Levine, the Creative Director of Irrational Games. “In 1999 Mode, gamers face more of the permanent consequences of their gameplay decisions. In Bioshock Infinite, gamers will have to sweat out the results of their actions. In addition, 1999 Mode will demand that players pick specializations, and focus on them.”
“I’m an old school gamer. We wanted to make sure we were taking into account the play styles of gamers like me. So we went straight to the horse’s mouth by asking them, on our website, a series of questions about how they play our games. 94.6 percent of respondents indicated that upgrade choices enhanced their Bioshock gameplay experience; however, 56.8 percent indicated that being required to make permanent decisions about their character would have made the game even better.”
1999 mode’s features will require more attention to micro-management of health, ammo and power. It will also take a more old school approach to players dying, with players getting sent to the “Game Over” screen, something not seen in a Bioshock title thus far.
So it’s “made by gamers, for gamers” that want a challenge. It’s definitely not for those who are looking to breeze through the story.