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BioShock Infinite's first review has gone live. IGN's exclusive review of the first-person shooter calls it a "brilliant shooter that nudges the entire genre forward." As it turns out, they preferred the PC version over its console counterparts.
There isn't a big difference in quality between platforms, mind you. IGN gave the Xbox 360 and PS3 editions a 9.4, while the PC is 9.5. The game earned stellar marks for the diverse tonics and weapons at players' disposal in battle. The reviewer also praised the visual style, particularly the sky-city of Columbia and its "twisted, jingoistic take on America."
In BioShock Infinite, former Pinkerton agent Booker DeWitt travels to Columbia in order to rescue Elizabeth from imprisonment. Elizabeth, controlled by A.I., accompanies Booker throughout much of the game. IGN's review says that she's an integral part of both the story and gameplay. Her presence adds to the experience instead of detracting from it.
So, what'd IGN hate? Well, they had some issues with the pacing. The middle of the game apparently lacks the energy of the beginning and end.
"The story’s delivery slows to a drip-feed, and the gameplay suffers from an exhausting stretch where the goalposts you’re barreling towards are suddenly and repeatedly moved back, ratcheting down the momentum," wrote IGN's Ryan McCaffrey.
The PC version managed to elevate itself above the PS3 and 360 editions in two ways. The consoles seem to struggle a bit with the game's visuals, with low-quality textures and minor framerate drops throughout the campaign. Furthermore, the 360/PS3 versions' combat suffers from a shortage of hotkeys - a problem that a PC gamer with a keyboard won't encounter.
World-exclusive reviews tend to be more positive than average. The first-ever review for Uncharted 2, after all, gave it a 21/20. Still, even exclusive reviews tend to have a shred of truth in them so I'm hopeful about Infinite.