New hires suggest BioShock 4 could be an open-world game

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BioShock 4 developer studio Cloud Chamber is hiring new employees and a new job description for a new screenwriter may give us some clues about the future of the franchise.

The new job listing, as reported by PCGamesN, is specifically targeted at applicants “that can weave impactful, character-based stories in an open world environment“The senior screenwriter will also help create.”contents of main and secondary missions“, which suggests that this new BioShock will allow players to deviate from the main path throughout the game. The manager will take care of assisting in the”creation and execution of the central story, including writing dialogue and other narrative elements as directed“.

Secondary content is not necessarily a groundbreaking concept for the BioShock franchise. Even BioShock Infinite (the simplest of the series) has several side quests that can be performed to encourage exploration, such as the hidden button that opens the back room of a bar known as Salty Oyster.

That said, some terms like “open world” and “side quest content” can mean many different things depending on the game, and the scope and style of a game can easily evolve over the years. BioShock 4, which was announced by 2K in December 2019, appears to be still in the early stages of development. Kelley Gilmore, a 20-year game development veteran on titles like XCOM and Sid Meier’s Civilization, is leading the new project. Gilmore previously told IGN that BioShock’s original creator Ken Levine is not associated with the project in any way.

Are we talking immersive sim open-world, or Assassin's Creed open-world?

However, Several veterans of the BioShock saga are part of the team that is bringing the sequel to life. Hoagy de la Plante (BioShock 1 and 2) is serving as Creative Director, while Art Director is Scott Sinclair reprising his role and Jonathan Pelling is serving as Design Director. The new BioShock may not take place in the underwater Rapture or the celestial Columbia, but if they are hiring writers for a new “open world” themselves, perhaps we can expect changes in BioShock 4.

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