The BioShock series has been dormant for the past five years. Its publisher 2K Games released a remastered version of the entire franchise titled BioShock: The Collection back in 2016, but a new chapter of the retro-futuristic game could soon be announced.
Alleged leaks for “BioShock 4” posted on the shady online forum 4chan on September 3 claim to blow the lid off the fourth game in the series. 4chan Zhykionn wrote that an anonymous source in 2K’s software development team revealed the announcement date for the title and rough outlines for its story, setting, and gameplay.
The purported leaks bolster a April 2018 Kotaku report that stated former employees of game studio Hanger 13 had joined another company to work on the next game in the BioShock series, codenamed “Parkside.” 2K Games has yet to announce anything about an upcoming BioShock game but the evidence is mounting.
The company’s last installment, BioShock Infinite, was a smash hit, selling more than 11 million copies two years after launch and receiving a myriad of awards and accolades. But what we’ve heard about BioShock 4 suggests it will be completely unlike Infinite and a lot more like 2K’s original two releases.
Here’s everything we know about BiosShock 3:
When Is the BioShock 4 Release Date?
2K Games has yet to confirm that it’s even working on BioShock 4, but the Zhykionn leaks state that the company has the “strong will” to announce the project “between December 2019 and March 2020.”
The leaks also state that production for the game started more than three years ago and that the game is at a “solid and advanced state of development.” This timeline lines up with BioShock Infinite’s creation process.
Ken Levine the founder of Irrational Games, the former developer of the BioShock series, told VG247 in 2010 that Infinite was worked on in secrecy for two-an-a-half years prior it its 2010 announcement. The final product took a total of five years to make and was released in early 2013.
Irrational relinquished the BioShock franchise after the release and left it in the hands of 2K. If the publisher follows Irrational’s development process in anyway a 2021 or 2022 release might be possible.
But keep in mind that video game release dates are always subject to change.
On What Consoles Will BioShock 4 Be Available?
Next-gen console hardware isn’t expected until late in 2020. So it’s possible that 2K will present the PS4 and Xbox One version of BioShock 4 earlier and the PS5 and Scarlett version later on.
There’s no mention of PC, but seeing as every game in the series has been available on Windows, the fourth installment probably will be too.
When Does BioShock 4 Take Place?
BioShock Infinite was not immediately part of the BioShock and BioShock 2 story lines, but the changed when its two-episode expansion Burial at Sea was released. However, BioShock 3 is expected to continue right where the first two installments left off while also nodding to BioShock Infinite.
Zhykionn writes that the game will take place in 1971, roughly ten years after the original Bioshock.
Where Does BioShock 4 Take Place?
Instead of taking place in the fictional underwater dystopian city of Rapture, BioShock 4 is expected to be set in London. But that doesn’t mean the horrors gamers left behind in Rapture won’t follow them to the surface.
ADAM, the same gene-altering tonics and plasmids that led to Rapture’s downfall is also wreaking havoc in London. Zhykionn describes a word that wants to ascend into a golden age with this newfound technology, but is instead faced with “innumerable crises.”
Players will no longer be confined to the dark and damp halls of Rapture and be able to explore London as an open world. The leaked information suggests you’ll have much more freedom to roam, explore, and leave you mark on this digital world.
“The game’s maps will be larger and richer than the previous chapters,” wrote Zhykionn. “Especially enhancing environmental destructibility and further expanding the effects of plasmids on enemies, in game maps and on environmental enigmas.”
Who Is the Main Character in BioShock 4?
The protagonist of BioShock 4 is said to be an American orphan named Lucas. The leaks explain that Lucas has called London home for years and survives as a thief.
That all goes south when a series of unfortunate events unravel and Lucas is accused of being involved in the downfall of Rapture.
It’s unclear who his adversaries are and what his main objective will be during the game, but there might be some familiar faces to help him along the way.
Who Are the Returning Characters in BioShock 4?
Zhykionn stated that Eleanor Lamb, Dr. Brigid Tenenbaum, and the Lutece Twins will make a return in BioShock 4 as pivotal characters.
The leaks didn’t specify where they’ll fit in the story, but fans of the franchise will apparently get to play alongside popular characters from past installments.
What Will the BioShock 4 Gameplay Be Like?
Finally, the leaks revealed that the game will make use of both open-world and linear maps to give players freedom while also driving home the game’s narrative.
BioShock and BioShock 2 made use of many linear, claustrophobic maps inside of Rapture, while Infinite provided more dynamic combat in the the airborne city of Columbia. BioShock 4 seems to be a middle ground between the two while also embracing the open-world trend that’s becoming increasingly popular in the year’s since the franchise’s last entry.
Plus, seeing how ADAM and plasmids are still a big part of the series, it’s likely that players will be able to inject Lucas with plasmids to give him superhuman abilities. Some iconic ones from the pervious games let players shoots fire, electricity, and even crows from their fingertips, and you can be sure that Bioshock 4 will introduce even more plasmid abilities when it finally arrives.
BioShock 4 is expected to make its debut between December 2019 and March 2020 if these leaks are accurate.