It’s been seven years since we last saw Bioshock. The Burial at Sea DLC was Irrational Games’ final release, after which lead developer Ken Levine closed the studio and fired most of his employees. Since then things have been quiet and time has not been kind to BioShock Infinite. Now there are signs of life and a new leak indicates we may be on the verge of a BioShock 4 announcement.
In 2019, 2K Games formally announced that a new entry was in development from internal studio Cloud Chamber, which boasts many staff members who worked on the previous games. Information has been scarce, but a new data leak via Nvidia’s GeForce Now service (H/T, ComicBook) mentions “BioShock 2022” and “BioShock RTX Remaster”.
This is a good indication we’ll see the franchise return next year, though as there’s not yet been an official unveiling we’re likely looking at Q4 2022. It appears 2K is planning to build hype with a second remaster of the first game, with the “RTX” indicating the addition of ray-traced lighting.
Speculation is mounting about what a new BioShock might look like, with analysis of Cloud Chambers job ads hinting that the game will be open-world. I just want a new setting: the underwater city of Rapture is over-familiar after multiple visits and Infinite‘s Columbia was interesting, but I’m glad it’s over.
One person who won’t be involved is series creator and director Ken Levine. His reputation has taken some whacks since Infinite‘s release, with criticisms of both his storytelling and management style. He subsequently formed new studio Ghost Story Games, which was founded in 2017 with a mission to build smaller games but is yet to release (or even reveal) a single title.
There’s still a number of industry events coming up in 2021, so keep an eye out for BioShock 4 there. Let’s hope it captures the magic of the first two titles.