Ask any gamer for a list of their five most anticipated 2012 releases, and I'd bet that 9 out of 10 of those lists include BioShock Infinite. Some will probably list the game more than once, such is the fervor for Irrational Games' gorgeously realized franchise. Today brings the reveal of Infinite's "1999 Mode," a feature that stands apart from the game's difficulty settings but still makes for a more challenging experience.
"In 1999 Mode, gamers face more of the permanent consequences of their gameplay decisions," Irrational's Ken Levine says in a morning press release. "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."
The news release doesn't get too specific, but beyond what Levine describes above, players can also expect to be facing a more demanding focus on "weapon, power and health management" as well as a limitation on respawns that requires the player to possess "the resources to be brought back to life."
Levine adds, "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."
What do you make of all this? Will you be starting off your BioShock Inifinite adventure later this year in 1999 Mode, assuming it's an option that won't require a first game completion to unlock? What sorts of features are you hoping to see?