Cloud Chamber is leading development on the next game in the BioShock series (colloquially, but unofficially referred to as BioShock 4). A series of job listings for positions at Cloud Chamber have started to paint a picture for what the next game in the BioShock universe will entail. One of the biggest of those reveals is that BioShock 4 is set to be an open-world game in some regard, more so than the twisted underwater passageways of Rapture or the airy streets of Columbia.
We’ve known for some time (again, thanks to job listings) that BioShock 4 would shrug off both Rapture and Columbia in favor of a “new and fantastical world,” but additional details have been sparse. This latest job listing for a Senior Writer specifically says “We’re hoping to find someone who can weave impactful, character-driven stories in an open world setting.”
In addition, the other job listings provide some tantalizing details about BioShock 4.
Story will still be told entirely from a first-person perspective with “fully interactive set-pieces.” They are looking for a cinematic designer, which says “We are looking for an artist who can masterfully create the narrative first-person moments that exist along a continuum of fully interactive set-pieces in our game.”
The listing for a Game Designer for Weapons says the role will “take ownership of the design process for player weapons and signature powers,” revealing that BioShock 4 will once again be a combination of weapons and powers.
The open-world will be “living,” according to the listing for a Senior World Designer. “Combine hand-crafted set-pieces with emerging AI behavior to create a ‘living’ world that offers players variety at every step of the game.”
And the listing for an AI Programmer talks about pushing the limits of AI interactions in games. “We have high ambitions for tying AI and storytelling together and it will be your responsibility to crystalize that ambition around several AI systems. You will be in close collaboration with Design leadership to flesh out the designs and finalize the implementations for an urban crowd system and the systemic tribal ecology of a sometimes hostile AI. You will lead the engineering side of those objectives. You will also be expected to help push our conception of what is possible in this arena doing as much to advance the ambition as you will attempt to build it.”
In addition, this listing talks about “a meaningful AI urban crowd system,” and “systemic tribal ecology of a sometimes hostile AI,” and that the role will “help to push the envelope of what is possible with interactive crowd systems.”
It’s important to note that development scope can change, and the listings don’t necessarily refer to final features that will make it into the game. For now these are simply hints at the direction Cloud Chamber is aiming to take the next BioShock game, but we won’t know more for certain until it’s revealed.