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Bioshock: Opening Sequence (Video Available Here)

Scripted by Jennisary, with help from Twitch chat contributors.


Narrator: Text fades in from a black screen: 1960 Mid-Atlantic. A white man sits in a dim plane cabin smoking a cigarette. His slightly weathered hands protrude from plain gray sleeves. He examines a leather wallet with a black and white portrait photo of two men and a woman, followed by a wrapped gift with a note: “To Jack, with love from Mom and Dad. Would you kindly not open...” The remainder of the note is obscured by a bow.

Jack: They told me… Son, you’re special. You’re born to do great things. You know what? They were right.

Narrator: Darkness.

Narrator: A gray plaque emerges, portraying a simplified relief of a city skyline and text which casts deep shadows: Bioshock. The plaque degrades and rusts as water cascades down it. Jack’s vision wavers as bubbles stream past in opaque darkness.

A large purse sinks past, with a pearl necklace drifting from it. A spinning turbine blade zips through the water, followed by a massive plane fuselage. Jack watches them plummeting to the depths below, then looks toward the surface.

All along the oily black water, floating wreckage burns, sending embers into the night sky. As Jack swims, flames erupt along the surface, funneling him towards a pristine obelisk which towers above the sea. Its dark stone obscures the full moon behind it, casting long shadows over the haze. The plane’s tail sinks nearby. Electric lamps illuminate a partially submerged staircase leading towards a grand entryway in the obelisk. Gold-colored doors are partially open into complete darkness. Jack enters, and the door closes behind him.

Lights flick on in a gray stone lobby trimmed with bronze. A bust of a man with a thin mustache looms behind a red banner which reads “No Gods or kings. Only man.” Jack descends a staircase toward a small spherical vessel. Its door is open to a warmly lit interior, with a bronze lever labeled “Bathysphere lever”.

Jack pulls it, and the glass door closes as the bathysphere descends through dark water. Bubbles obscure decorative walls, a silver statue, and depth markers during the dive. A projector screen zips up to cover the window, showing a grayscale slide advertising “Incinerate”; “Fire at your fingertips! Plasmids by Ryan Industries”. Subsequent slides are scratched and worn: a photo of the man with the mustache smoking a pipe, and political cartoons.

Andrew Ryan: I am Andrew Ryan and I’m here to ask you a question: is a man not entitled to the sweat of his brow? No, says the man in Washington. It belongs to the poor. No, says the man in the Vatican. It belongs to God. No, says the man in Moscow. It belongs to everyone. I rejected those answers. Instead, I choose something different. I choose the impossible. I chose… Rapture.

Narrator: A grand, brightly lit metropolis on the sea floor.

Andrew Ryan: A city where the artist would not fear the censor. Where the scientist would not be bound by petty morality. There the great would not be constrained by the small. And with the sweat of your brow, Rapture can become your city as well.

Narrator: The bathysphere passes opulent skyscrapers, fish, a blue whale, and glass walkways. A lone figure in one walkway welds a strut, while flickering neon signs advertise fashion, tobacco, and fine art.

Radio: lighting up like hellfire. Looks like some kind of plane crash. We are in the middle of the Atlantic ocean. How could...?

Narrator: Four metal archways guide the bathysphere toward a circular entrance. Each lights up with neon lettering: All good things / of this earth / flow / into the city.

Radio: That means we've got company.

The bathysphere docks in a small chamber accented with advertisements and brass-trimmed lightbulbs.

Fade to black.

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