Less than 30 years ago on the likes of the NES, game cartridges were the size of small plates and contained relatively small 8-bit games. Fast forward to 2020 and, somehow, 2K has packed three critically acclaimed BioShock games onto one side of an SD card. The mind boggles.

Anyone with a PS4, Xbox or PC that loves the BioShock series will undoubtedly already know just how awesome BioShock: The Collection is – but how does it hold up on Switch?

The technical stuff

Straight off the bat let’s get the technical aspect out of the way. The Collection on Switch maintains the upgraded assets for the remasters of BioShock and BioShock 2, and runs at 1080p – 30 frames per second (fps) when docked – dropping to 720p in portable mode.

‘Only 30fps?’ I hear you cry. Yes, that is half the 60fps on the likes of PS4 and Xbox One. And, yes, that is the frame rate of the previous generation of consoles. But this is the only compromise you will have to make for the Switch version and, actually, because it performs so well and so consistently at that frame rate, A) you barely really notice and B) there are no annoying frame rate drops which can and often do completely ruin a gaming experience.

The release of BioShock on Switch is no afterthought. It comes as part of an assault on Nintendo’s console, with seven different games from three franchises launching all on the same day at the end of last month. XCOM 2 Collection and Borderlands Legacy Collection were the other two.

BioShock: The Collection on Switch comes with all previously released downloadable content. It is worth bearing in mind that, if you’re buying it digitally, you’ll either need an SD card or to free up plenty of space – 25GB to be precise.

A Nintendo Switch console with a pair of Joy-Con controllers, taken on February 22, 2017. (Photo by Joby Sessions/Future via Getty Images)
A Nintendo Switch console with a pair of Joy-Con controllers, taken on February 22, 2017. (Photo by Joby Sessions/Future via Getty Images)

What’s included in the collection?

So what are you getting? Well first up is BioShock Remastered. Explore the undersea city of Rapture, a haven for society’s greatest minds that has devolved into a dystopian nightmare, wrought by one man’s hubris.

Then there’s BioShock 2 Remastered – see Rapture through the eyes of Subject Delta, a fearsome Big Daddy prototype on a life-or-death mission to rescue his missing Little Sister.

 

And finally BioShock Infinite: The Complete Edition. Indebted to the wrong people, private investigator Booker DeWitt must take on an impossible task – travel to a flying city above the clouds, and rescue a woman named Elizabeth.

‘Playing BioShock on the move will never get old’

You may compromise on frame rate on Switch (something that has been inconsequential for me personally when playing) but the pay off is that you get something none of the other consoles can deliver – portable play.

I would go as far as to say for that reason – combined with the quality of this port – the Switch version is a simply a must-have.

Yes, it is better docked, but playing BioShock on the move will never get old. Indeed, this may not fully realise its potential until we emerge from lockdown and begin commuting and travelling again.

A slick, jam-packed and frankly brilliant collection of classic shooters with the option to play on the big screen or wherever the hell you like – what’s not to like?

Rating: 8.5/10

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