- “What's happening here?”
- ― Diane McClintock[src]
The Rapture Storyline details the different events evolving around the universe of Rapture, from the city's foundation to its demise and later fate.
1946-1952: The Rapture Colony
Andrew Ryan began the construction of Rapture in 1946. Using his own private steam-liner, the Olympian, he transported building supplies to the coordinates where the city would be built, roughly located at 63° 2' N, 29° 55' W (between Greenland and Iceland) in the North Atlantic ocean. A building platform, nicknamed the Sinker, was lowered from the Olympian to bring the supplies and crew to the site. Rapture was designed to be entirely self-supporting, with all of its electricity, food production, water purification and defense systems powered by undersea volcanic vents. In Rapture, Science, Industry and Art would thrive undisturbed by intervention from governments, religious institutions, or other social agencies. People from around the world emigrated to the hidden city during the years between 1946 and 1952, sparking conspiracy theories on the surface about mass disappearances that came to be known as "The Vanishing". Rapture's population was composed of the people Ryan viewed as the "best examples" of humankind.
The city plans did not include sustainability for the jobs of the construction workers, and they would have to adapt once the building projects ceased. Many workers were left out of work in leaking, crowded, and what was meant to be "temporary" housing in places like Pauper's Drop. Ryan and his Central Council took little notice of the destitute and mostly ignored the issue, assuming they would manage to find work. As per Ryan's philosophy, unfortunates were left to find their own way to prosperity. Ryan did, however, listen to advice that the citizens were becoming anxious from the isolation of the city and the lack of sunlight. Sofia Lamb, a British psychiatrist from the surface, was invited down to Rapture by Andrew Ryan to help citizens cope with life in the undersea city. Lamb's utilitarian beliefs largely clashed with the free market ideals of Rapture. She devoted much of her efforts to indoctrinating poorer citizens, and in this way became a political rival to Ryan. Her conspiring to overthrowing Rapture's government and philosophy eventually earned her exile.
During that same time period, between 1949 and 1951, Dr. Brigid Tenenbaum happened to be passing through the docks in Neptune's Bounty when she noticed an individual, whose hands she knew had been paralyzed in the war, was playing catch. After inquiring as to the reason behind the restoration of his damaged hand, she was told he had been bitten by a sea slug. Tenenbaum asked the man for the sea slug, suspecting that she had discovered something amazing, and began to look for a sponsor who would fund her research.
Scoffed at by all other scientists in Rapture, Tenenbaum approached Frank Fontaine, a ruthless mobster in Neptune's Bounty. He agreed to fund Tenenbaum's research and development, as long as he was given full rights to profit from the findings. He funded her research using the fortune he had acquired from his smuggling ring, which brought contraband items down to Rapture from the surface. Tenenbaum's research quickly began to produce results. She discovered the substance the sea slugs secreted behaved like stem cells, and by using it she could manipulate DNA. She was able to "bend the double-helix", cure diseases, and give organisms changed and amazing powers. The substance was called a "rebirth" for humanity, and it was dubbed "ADAM".
Sometime after the discovery of ADAM, the scientists made another breakthrough: research to increase generation of ADAM had led them to implant slugs into the stomachs of various test subjects. With an appropriate host, the slugs could generate twenty to thirty times their normal production of ADAM. It was discovered young girls were the only host type which successfully worked. If they were going to mass-produce ADAM consumer products as Fontaine wanted, it would require a great number of such hosts. Taking inspiration from Sofia Lamb's earlier charity work, Fontaine set up the "Little Sister's Orphanage", advertising it as a place where financially pressed families could send their little girls for care and schooling. The transformed girls eventually came to be known by the orphanage name "Little Sisters".
1952-1958: Rapture's Golden Age and Beginning of the Civil War
When Ryan initially noticed Sofia Lamb's political influence, he agreed to a series of publicized debates with her, hoping to ruin her popularity by exposing the weaknesses in her philosophy. This was a miscalculation on his part, as it only gave her a public forum to increase her base of supporters. When he finally began to fear her effect upon Rapture, Ryan commissioned Augustus Sinclair's company "Sinclair Solutions" to monitor Lamb and her followers, hoping to find a legal excuse to take her into custody. Reporter Stanley Poole of the Rapture Tribune acted as an undercover spy for Sinclair, becoming a member of the "Rapture Family"—Lamb's followers. Ryan, supplied with proof, eventually had Lamb arrested and imprisoned indefinitely at Persephone, a prison complex run by Sinclair.
Once Fontaine Futuristics was able to produce ADAM on a massive scale, the marketing of Gene Tonics and Plasmids (developed by Dr. Yi Suchong) went mainstream, being sold to any individual that could afford them. These Tonics and Plasmids bestowed individuals with superhuman abilities, such as creating fire at their fingertips (Incinerate!), releasing a swarm of killer bees from their arms (Insect Swarm), or increasing muscle tissue and movement speed (SportBoost). Andrew Ryan initially admired the success of Frank Fontaine, citing him as a prime example of the type of individual that Rapture was built to propagate.
As years passed, however, Ryan began to suspect Fontaine of various crimes, ranging from smuggling to murder. Fontaine's criminal influence and monopoly of ADAM threatened the current social structure and order within the city. Andrew Ryan attempted to arrest Fontaine for smuggling, but Fontaine decided that he wanted to go down "guns blazing" and arranged to fake his death during the resulting shootout in late 1958. After this, Ryan assumed control of Fontaine Futuristics and began to produce Plasmids and Tonics within his own company, Ryan Industries.
Rapture became filled with civil unrest in those following months, as Fontaine stepped into the persona of his alter ego, Atlas, rallying people who had flocked to Fontaine's poor houses, starting a subtle guerrilla war against Rapture's police force. The serious violence began on the New Year's Eve of 1958, when Atlas supporters attacked various key locations in the city, including the upper-class Kashmir Restaurant. This event was the first large-scale battle of Rapture's Civil War. Tightening control within the city, Ryan began instituting harsher punishments against "problem citizens" who worked against Rapture's ideals and survival, arresting many of Atlas' and Lamb's followers.
Mass addiction to ADAM had already become a problem. Now large numbers of citizens started using Plasmids and Tonics to defend themselves. To handle this increased demand, Ryan adjusted the Little Sister program to send the girls out into the streets to gather ADAM from corpses. Ryan had commissioned Dr. Suchong to develop protectors for the girls, using many prison inmates, including Lamb's imprisoned followers in Persephone, and modifying them into prototype Big Daddies. To supply even more ADAM for the growing conflict, kidnappings of young girls began, to turn them into Little Sisters. Like Suchong's work, the Protector Project was also pushed forward under the control of Dr. Gilbert Alexander, another brilliant scientist from Fontaine Futuristics. He continued Suchong's work by bonding Eleanor Lamb, daughter of Sofia Lamb who had been abducted and turned into a Little Sister, to Subject Delta.
Just prior to the New Year riots, Sofia Lamb had escaped from Persephone and was searching for her daughter. On New Year's Eve, she and some loyal Splicers finally took Eleanor from her protector. Delta was incapacitated by a Hypnotize Plasmid, with which Lamb forced him to remove his helmet and shoot himself in the head in front of a shocked Eleanor. Lamb then retreated back to Persephone with her daughter, avoiding the conflict of the war.
During the Civil War, Splicers learned how to take down Big Daddies, to retrieve the ADAM from the Little Sisters, harvesting the slugs embedded within them, resulting in the girls' deaths. Brigid Tenenbaum, having recognized her crime when confronting a Little Sister in Farmer's Market, developed a Plasmid which would kill the slug inside the Sisters, restoring their humanity. Tenenbaum then began to collect girls she rescued, hiding in an underground safe room in the sewers of Olympus Heights, keeping herself and the girls safe from harm.
1958-1959: Burial at Sea
On December 31, 1958, Booker DeWitt, a private investigator in Rapture, is hired by a mysterious woman by the name of Elizabeth to find a lost girl, Sally. The detective believes Sally is dead, but his new client claims otherwise. Elizabeth already knows the connection between him and Sally, and to motivate him says that this is the kind of job he could do for free.
Market Street and High Street
Elizabeth first leads Booker through Market Street on their way to meet one of her contacts, who she believes will deliver the information in his possession with the help of the detective's persuasiveness. They interrogate each other on the way, Booker wondering what more Elizabeth knows about the case and what the lost girl means to her, and Elizabeth asking him of the circumstances behind Sally's disappearance. While Booker answers all of her questions, Elizabeth remains abruptly evasive. However the detective can't help but notice she is oblivious to the recent changes in the underwater utopia, notably the existence of Little Sisters.
As they reach the elevator to the upper concourse, she reveals that they will be able to meet her contact at the Garden of the Muses, a private club also known as Cohen's. As the club is hosting a private party, preventing them from entering and meeting the contact, Sander Cohen himself, they navigate through High Street to get an invitation mask from one of the three businesses sponsoring the event: The Gallery of the Artist's Struggle, The Golden Rule and Rapture Records. They search through the backroom of each store and are finally able to find a mask, granting them access to the club where Booker meets Cohen. The artist is unsuccessfully trying to paint the beauty of pain while observing a couple of dancers, but agrees to reveal to them the location of Sally in exchange for them dancing. Booker and Elizabeth then slowly begin to waltz, but Cohen, in despair of not finding his inspiration, orders them to be electrocuted. He then honors his end of the bargain, and has them put into a bathysphere heading to Fontaine's sunken store, where Sally has been sent.
Fontaine's Department Store
Booker and Elizabeth enter the closed off store through the bathysphere station located in the main building. They cross over to the entrance's improvised gate using a pair of Air Grabbers found on the premises. In order to get to the Housewares department building where Sally is trapped, they have to find a way to cross the gap between the Pavilion and the Tram station. They decide to seek a bottle of Old Man Winter Plasmid in the department store to freeze the water running out of burst pipes to improvise a bridge, like a Frosty Splicer had just demonstrated at the store's entrance. With the elevators being out of order, the couple reach the second floor through the Menswear department, and go up to the third riding the Pneumo Lines atop the Pavilion with their Air Grabbers. They enter Jack Frost's Village where the Plasmid they need was once promoted and the Frosty Splicer they previously saw took refuge. Elizabeth opens the Plasmid safe to find that not a single Old Man Winter Plasmid is left. She opens a Tear in front of Booker for the first time, calling it a "new Plasmid", and through it is able to retrieve a bottle of Old Man Winter. With the Plasmid acquired, they are able to bridge the gap and reach the station to take the tram to Housewares.
Booker and Elizabeth witness Sally hiding herself from the Splicers in the building's ventilation system right after their arrival at Housewares. Elizabeth analyzes the blueprints of their floor and deduces that to get the girl out, they will have to shut all vents in the vicinity except one, and turn the thermostat up, to drive the girl out where they can retrieve her.
They travel through different areas of that floor to find and close all vents, in the Electronics department, the Bistro at Fontaine's, the Customer Service booth, outside the Bookstore, and the Appliances showroom. Once done, they proceed to the boiler room in the Toys department. Booker reluctantly allows turning up the temperature inside the vents, which burns and hurts Sally, forcing her to go to the Toy Store and out the only vent left opened.
Booker tries to grab Sally and she is revealed to have been turned into a Little Sister, much to Booker's despair. His shock is cut short by the appearance of an angry Bouncer Big Daddy protecting the girl. A terrible battle ensues and ends with Booker seemingly killing the Daddy. He then reaches for Sally, still being hurt by the heated vent, and tries to pull her out by force. This awakens his memories of his previous life as Zachary Hale Comstock, and his responsibility in the death of Anna, an alternate version of Elizabeth, which led him to revert to his old identity and to come over to Rapture in order to escape from his guilt. Comstock lets Sally go and gives his sincere apologies to Elizabeth, but she rejects them and watches as he is impaled by the drill of the recuperated Bouncer.
After Comstock's death, Elizabeth was killed only seconds later by the very same Big Daddy. She is later brought back to Rapture from the Sea of Doors by Rosalind and Robert Lutece, and wakes up in the now rampaged department, in front of the vent where Sally was hiding and next to Comstock's lifeless body.
As she regains consciousness, she witnesses a man pulling Sally out of the vent while another man, called Lonnie, is holding a gun against her head. Atlas appears and orders Lonnie to finish her off. A vision of Booker DeWitt suddenly appears, and instructs her with the right words to make a deal with Atlas, saving her life and helping Elizabeth to get Sally back from the revolutionary. Following Booker's instructions, she poses as Suchong's lab assistant and promises Atlas and his men to get them back to Rapture. Atlas accepts, and leaves her with a radio to stay in touch.
Looking for Suchong
Elizabeth is guided by the sound of Booker's voice speaking to her through the radio, who reveals himself to be a mental projection of her own subconscious rather than the man she once knew. As she navigates through the department's wreckage, they both review the situation which led her to execute her own revenge on Comstock, her guilt for using and hurting Sally and her deal with Atlas to get the girl back, which means finding Suchong somewhere in the department store. Elizabeth then comes across her own corpse, impaled through the heart on a piece of rebar behind the wall she was thrown through by the Bouncer. She also realizes that coming back to Rapture this time was at the cost of losing her Tear-opening powers and her memories from the moment of her death to her "return", though she slowly starts to recollect them.
Elizabeth takes a service elevator and makes her way through Ryan the Lion Preparatory Academy. Once out, she discovers her first clue on the doctor's whereabouts: an advertisement for the Silver Fin Restaurant located on the upper floors of Fontaine's, closed by order of Suchong himself, but also where Elizabeth first entered Rapture through a Tear a few months before.
Repairing Suchong's Device
While riding an elevator to the upper levels, Atlas contacts Elizabeth by radio and reminds her of their deal, putting pressure on her by threatening Sally's life. She enters Bathyspheres DeLuxe where the Silver Fin is located in, and enters the locked restaurant through a hidden vent.
Inside the Silver Fin, she learns that Suchong was using the Tear she once went through to spy on Columbia and its inhabitants, making new discoveries useful for his own research and eventually building his own Lutece Device. Elizabeth hopes to use the machine to reach the flying city and recover a Lutece Particle to make the department store float back up to Rapture, but the device has been vandalized and Suchong left the place without repairing it. However, Elizabeth discovers his ciphered notes and comes to the conclusion that she will need a cathode tube, a CO2 Scrubber and a heat sink. She determines that she can salvage a cathode tube from any vending machines, and that the CO2 scrubber can be found on the bathyspheres at the Service Bay. Booker suggests her that she can replace the needed heat sink using the Old Man Winter Plasmid to cool down the device, and Atlas confirms to her that she will find one at the Test-Drive area. As Elizabeth is about to leave the restaurant, the local security is engaged and she gets trapped at the entrance. Suchong then contacts her, ready to have the woman he believes to be another vandal shot to death. Elizabeth assures him that his machine is broken and that she will repair it on the condition that he lets her use it. The scientist agrees with the deal, calls the security off and reveals to her the code to the restaurant's front door.
Elizabeth is then set on finding the three required components, navigating through the Splicer-filled department. Once she gets hold of each of those parts, she is able to repair the device and uses it to travel to Columbia one last time. Unknowingly to her, Andrew Ryan sets his Private Security forces on the store to kill Atlas and his minions while she is still at Columbia.
Back to Rapture
Elizabeth is only able to return through the machine's Tear after completing another task for Suchong, who is keeping her from coming back. She finally gets back with a sample of her own hair found in the locked down parts of the Fink Manufacturing Research Labs, which Suchong needs to further study the bond between the flying creature Songbird and the only person who bonded to him, and so complete his own bond between Big Daddies and Little Sisters. Suchong holds his end of the bargain and she sends him the hair sample via Pneumo Tube, however Andrew Ryan gets hold of the situation and addresses Elizabeth via security monitors to offer her a deal: to work for him, guaranteeing her safety but not Sally's, or to die with Atlas and his rebels. Elizabeth rejects Ryan's offer and is contacted by Atlas. She determines that the best place to release the Lutece Particle and make the department float back to Rapture would be in Frank Fontaine's former office, right where the building's internal structure junction is located. Atlas then unlocks the elevator to the office situated on the highest floor, which he happened to have taken over for his own use.
Elizabeth makes her way to the elevator, and both Booker and Ryan warn her that Atlas will betray her. Once in the office, she releases the Quantum Particle right under the structure junction, and the building starts floating upwards. However, Atlas' goons appear and chloroform her.
The Room and Dr. Suchong's Free Clinic
Elizabeth awakens tied to a chair in a dark room somewhere in Rapture, right after the Kashmir Restaurant was bombed by Atlas and the 1958 New Year's Eve Riots started. Atlas leaves her to his henchmen Lonnie to interrogate her about the location of the "Ace in the Hole", but Elizabeth ignores the answer. Lonnie then injects her with sodium thiopental, a truth serum, but the dosage is too high and she is knocked unconscious again. She awakens two weeks later in the same room, and Atlas is now losing the war with Ryan. An impatient Atlas brutally threatens Elizabeth with performing a transorbital lobotomy on her, asking her again about the location of the "Ace in the Hole". However, Elizabeth gets cynical and invites him to do so. Atlas, furious, threatens to lobotomize Sally instead, strapped to a gurney, despite Elizabeth's panicked claims that she doesn't know anything. She blacks out and Booker appears to her in a vision. He reveals that before losing her memories by returning to Rapture after her death, Elizabeth was able to foresee all the events which followed from this initial point to much further. He also tells her that she will need to take a leap of faith if she wants to accomplish what she came back for: saving Sally.
Elizabeth snaps back to reality and reveals to Atlas that his "Ace in the Hole" is at Suchong's clinic. She promises to sneak in and get the Ace in exchange for Sally's freedom. Atlas bags Elizabeth and brings her to his bathysphere to reach a station at Artemis Suites, where he disembarks her before leaving with his thugs. She is able to access Suchong's hidden Laboratory at the back of his clinic through a secret maintenance passage. As she gets further in, she encounters a Bouncer near death with two terrified Little Sisters by his side. With the Big Daddy blocking the access to the front of the clinic, Elizabeth finds Suchong's ciphered notes on the Protector Bond and learns that he was unsuccessful to make it work for the past two weeks, even after obtaining Elizabeth's hair sample. She discovers that the only way to save the Big Daddy and make him move out of the way is to have one of the Little Sisters offer some of the ADAM they produce to him. The girls inject some of their ADAM into the hulking creature's arm, which brings him back to health and incidentally completes the bond between Protectors and Gatherers.
Elizabeth continues to explore the place, eventually reaching a laboratory room where Suchong is working. She observes the scientist recording an audio diary where he expresses his frustration at being unable to complete the Protection Bond. The two Little Sisters then enter the room and begin to pester him, causing the doctor to smack one of them in anger, unknowingly triggering the Bouncer's defensive behavior. The Big Daddy violently kills Suchong with his drill, and Elizabeth recovers an envelope from his corpse where the "Ace in the Hole" is written in cipher, next to a photo of a man.
Elizabeth leaves the clinic and reunites with Atlas and his goons. She gives him the letter and, knowing what will unfold, asks him to finish quickly what he always intended to do. He strikes her violently on the forehead with a wrench, but the blow awakens her lost memories and she recalls seeing the same man from the letter's photograph aboard a plane and hijacking it with a revolver concealed in a present. Atlas demands from Elizabeth the meaning of the letter's code. She finally reveals the single phrase written on the letter, "Would You Kindly". Atlas, satisfied, strikes Elizabeth again and leaves. A dying Elizabeth foresees that the man's plane will crash next to Rapture's Lighthouse and all the events which will unfold as he will explore the city, rescuing the Little Sisters in the process and returning to the surface with them, including Sally. Elizabeth calmly passes on next to Sally, knowing that the girl will be saved by the outcomes of her final act.
1959-1960: The Fall of Rapture (BioShock 2 Multiplayer)
- Main article: BioShock 2 Multiplayer
Throughout 1959, a full-scale decline of Rapture took place, with many large battles occurring between the armies of Andrew Ryan and Atlas. Ryan had many of Ryan Industries' new Plasmids and Gene Tonics tested by citizens in the streets through Sinclair Solutions. Early 1959 also saw great advances in the technology of Big Daddies under Gilbert Alexander's influence.
Ryan used the press to gain the citizens' support for action against Atlas and his terrorists, declaring Atlas a "parasite" and an enemy of Rapture. After final tests of the Alpha Series of Big Daddies were completed for the Protector Program, Ryan Industries began to release the first functional Big Daddies (Bouncer and Rosie models) into the streets to keep the Splicers away from the Little Sisters during their work gathering ADAM. Many accidents involving citizens and Big Daddies happened, and were reported by the press. Their aggressive nature was already known by Ryan's people and the scientific community, as Dr. Suchong himself had been one of their first victims. Unfortunately, the Daddies weren't enough to keep Atlas' forces from attacking the Sisters for their ADAM. These incidents earned Atlas the label of "child killer" in the newspapers. Ryan continued to use the press to encourage the citizens with reports of his progress against the rebellion.
As the conflict escalated, the harmful side effects of ADAM became more recognized among the population. Dr. J.S. Steinman, a well-known surgeon in Rapture, became addled by ADAM's degenerative effects, and began to mutilate and murder his own patients and staff. Atlas used these incidents to fuel the hysteria of the population about ADAM shortages, leading to riots. During the same period, Brigid Tenenbaum, who had vanished after renouncing the Little Sister Program, began to abduct Little Sisters to save them. Her acts were reported to Ryan, who immediately began a campaign to discredit her, using the newspapers to reveal the truth of her past in the German concentration camps.
More and more districts of Rapture began to be affected by the war. Apollo Square was used by Ryan's authorities as a detention camp to isolate Atlas supporters, while Persephone Penal Colony had fallen under Sofia Lamb's control and was cut off from the rest of the city. Arcadia was forced to close business because of the activities of a Splicer pagan cult called the Saturnine. Rapture's famous artist, Sander Cohen, he too driven mad by excessive ADAM use, was also forced to close Fort Frolic. The Memorial Museum of Point Prometheus was closed to the public and converted into the Proving Grounds area to train the new Big Daddies. Dionysus Park, Lamb's private art retreat, was flooded by Rapture Tribune reporter Stanley Poole in an attempt to hide his treacherous actions from Lamb's followers. Siren Alley, whose residents had suffered from disruptions in the economy, had become the city's red-light district.
The violence escalated and the conditions in the city continued to deteriorate, and even members of the press began to turn against Ryan. With Splicer attacks growing more organized and becoming more effective, Ryan Industries' response was to create "Elite" versions of the Big Daddies, and to ask McClendon Robotics for new deadlier models of Security Bots. Rapture Central Computing was also commissioned to design components for a new model of Protector called the Lancer. These new Bots and Protectors were ultimately never involved in the war, as Minerva's Den, the center for advanced technology in Rapture, was isolated from the rest of the city by Reed Wahl.
Andrew Ryan had attempted to maintain control by instituting wartime measures: enacting harsher laws, limiting the movement of the population, imprisoning Atlas supporters, shutting down the Bathysphere network, and enforcing the death penalty for anyone who broke the anti-smuggling law. Eventually, even the newspapers were forced to cease publication as Ryan issued Security Order 217. The Splicer attacks, destruction, and public disorder continued to escalate. In the end, Andrew Ryan was "seeking solutions in seclusion" within Hephaestus (earning him the name "Hephaestus Hermit" by the press). In an act of desperation, he created a pheromone control, which gave him sufficient control over all of the ADAM addicted citizens. Though initially reluctant to effectively strip his citizens of the human quality he most valued, free will, Ryan believed the alternative was the end of Rapture. Once Ryan had neutralized Atlas' troops and stabilized the city, the rebel leader went into hiding. Normality still had not returned for the few remaining sane citizens, as many Splicers still roamed the streets, and the war's destruction was widespread.
- Main article: BioShock
Jack, a passenger on a commercial aircraft flying over the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, reads a letter attached to a gift from home that begins with "Dear Jack, Would You Kindly not open until..." (with the rest of the letter obstructed; the whole content of the letter is later revealed when confronting Andrew Ryan at his office. It says: "To Jack, with love from Mom & Dad. Would you kindly not open until 63° 2° N, 29° 55° W"). The plane mysteriously crashes, and Jack awakens from an apparent blackout to find himself underwater. He is surrounded by sinking debris and luggage from the crash. As Jack, evidently the plane crash's lone survivor, surfaces, he swims for the only structure in sight: a lighthouse shining brightly among the dark night sky and ocean. It serves as the above-surface entry point into Rapture, a grand underwater metropolis.
The Welcome Center
After Jack enters the lighthouse, he descends into the ocean city using a bathysphere, as the history of Rapture is told through a pre-recorded film narrative by Andrew Ryan, the city's founder. During his descent, Jack overhears a radio conversation in which Atlas orders one of his men, Johnny, to meet the arriving bathysphere. After the bathysphere docks in the city's Welcome Center, Johnny is killed by one of Rapture's insane, deformed, and violent citizens called Splicers. Atlas comes in over a shortwave radio which Jack picks up and informs him that he wants to keep him alive. As Jack moves to safety, Atlas reveals that he has been cut off from his family by Splicers. Atlas believes that Jack is his only hope in reuniting himself with his wife and son, and tells Jack to find his way into Neptune's Bounty, where his family is secretly waiting in a submarine.
Jack explores Rapture with the guidance of Atlas, until he discovers a Gatherer's Garden vending machine containing hypodermic needles. Jack injects himself with one, rewriting his genetic code. He continues on through the city, learning about the various traps, enemies, and resources, until he is discovered and contacted by Andrew Ryan. Ryan believes that Jack is either a KGB or CIA agent, and sends his pheromone-controlled Splicers after him. The entrance to Neptune's Bounty is sealed off by a security alert, and Atlas urges Jack to take an alternative route through the Medical Pavilion.
The Medical Pavilion
Jack escapes to the Medical Pavilion, and continues to learn more about Rapture and its inhabitants. Throughout his journey, Jack picks up audio diaries that reveal small pieces of the plot and the city's backstory by themselves, but clear up significant mysteries when considered in full context. Jack also experiences brief moments of psychic hallucinations, in which he can see ghostly figures walking about, talking, and interacting with each other; a side effect of gene splicing oneself.
Jack learns of Dr. J.S. Steinman, a plastic surgeon who unlocked ADAM's cosmetic potential, and has lost his sense of reality due to over-splicing, becoming murderously insane in his pursuit of enforcing cosmetic perfection at any cost. In order for Jack to proceed, Steinman must be killed, as he has the key to override the security lock down, which will enable Jack access to the bathysphere to Neptune's Bounty where Atlas' family awaits.
After Steinman is killed and his key is taken, Jack encounters a Bouncer Big Daddy being killed and a Splicer cornering his now unguarded Little Sister. Before Jack can intervene, Dr. Brigid Tenenbaum bursts upon the scene, and dispatches the Splicer with her pistol.
Seeing that Jack is not a crazed Splicer, Tenenbaum begs Jack to have mercy on the Little Sisters, but Atlas objects, telling Jack that he needs ADAM in order to survive in Rapture. Atlas says that the Sisters are no longer human girls, but monsters; the clear choice is to kill them to obtain all of their ADAM. Tenenbaum once again advises, saying that if Jack must have ADAM, there is an alternative choice to killing the girls: using a Plasmid of her own making that will safely remove the Sea Slug in their bellies. This will spare the girl's life, but only yield half the amount of ADAM she has. As further incentive, Tenenbaum offers future gifts that will compensate Jack for the ADAM he loses in saving the girls. Caught between the opposing counsel of Atlas and Tenenbaum, Jack is faced with the choice of rescuing or harvesting the Little Sisters. He then proceeds to Neptune's Bounty.
Neptune's Bounty and the Smuggler's Hideout
Jack arrives at Neptune's Bounty, Rapture's main dock and fishery. Atlas tells Jack to make his way down to Fontaine Fisheries, where he meets Peach Wilkins. Even with the word of Atlas, the paranoid Wilkins refuses Jack passage to the Fisheries, believing him to be an agent of Frank Fontaine sent to kill him for his disloyalty. Wilkins eventually agrees to allow Jack passage based on one condition: Jack must bring him photos of Spider Splicers taken with a special biological Research Camera.
As Jack explores Neptune's Bounty and takes the required photos, he learns through audio recordings about the discovery of ADAM, how Frank Fontaine founded a smuggling ring which funded Tenenbaum and ADAM research later on, how Fontaine's dominance over the ADAM market changed Rapture's social structure, how Andrew Ryan tried to bust the smuggling ring, and how Peach Wilkins began his involvement in smuggling for Fontaine. Jack returns with the photos, and Wilkins allows him access to the Fisheries. Once Jack enters, Wilkins betrays and attacks him.
After killing Wilkins, Jack discovers the hidden pathway to the Smuggler's Hideout, where Atlas' family remains locked in a submarine. Jack arrives at the control room overlooking the dock with the submarine, and activates a switch that allows Atlas to enter the hideout. As Atlas approaches the submarine, Ryan's Splicers begin swarming the dock area. Atlas fights off the Splicers long enough to escape, but Ryan triggers explosives that destroy the submarine with Atlas' family inside. A grieving, vengeful Atlas tells Jack that Ryan must now die.
Arcadia, the Farmer's Market and Fort Frolic
Jack makes his way through a secret smuggling passage to Arcadia, Rapture's arboretum and the supplier of the city's oxygen. As Jack heads toward the district's bathysphere to exit the area, Ryan releases a toxic chemical into the air. All vegetation in the area is extinguished, and an automatic security lockdown is initiated; all of Arcadia's doors are closed and sealed to conserve the remaining oxygen.
Jack enters Arcadia's research laboratories where he meets Professor Julie Langford, the scientist who helped Ryan create the vegetation in Arcadia. Atlas and Langford are both equally dismayed at this stunning turn of events; without Arcadia's plants and trees, Rapture will only have a limited supply of oxygen. Langford tells Jack that there is only one option available to reverse the damage done, but she is killed by Ryan who releases a poisonous gas into her office. From her audio recordings, Jack learns the required information for the creation of the Lazarus Vector, which is a chemical designed to revive dead plant life. Throughout Arcadia and the Farmer's Market, Jack locates the remaining necessary components to invent the Lazarus Vector and releases it into the air. With the source of oxygen restored and the sealed doors now open, Jack has access to the bathysphere.
Jack then arrives in Fort Frolic, Rapture's central entertainment complex. Jack travels to the next bathysphere, where he is suddenly denied access. Atlas' voice on the shortwave radio fades out, and is replaced by the voice of "Rapture's most beloved artist", the mad Sander Cohen. Cohen remarks that he has blocked all radio transmissions from Atlas and Ryan, and invites Jack into Fort Frolic's Atrium area. Cohen then charges Jack with the task of helping him create his Quadtych/masterpiece, which involves Jack killing and taking photos of four of Cohen's former disciples. Jack returns with the required photos, and completes Cohen's Quadtych. Cohen then appears in person to appreciate his masterpiece firsthand, and congratulates Jack by telling him that the way to Ryan is clear. Atlas comes in over the radio and implores Jack to leave using the bathysphere, so he can finally deal with Ryan.
Hephaestus and Rapture Central Control
At Hephaestus, Rapture's power production facility, Atlas informs Jack that Ryan has the genetic key of Rapture. If Jack can get his hands on that, they can finally leave the city. Jack makes his way to the entrance to Ryan's office, only to find that it is sealed shut by an electromagnetic defense mechanism. He enters the workshops, where he learns, through audio recordings, of a plot to dismantle Ryan's defense and assassinate him. Jack also learns of the electromagnetic pulse bomb that was being assembled to destroy Ryan's defenses. Unfortunately, the construction of the EMP bomb was stopped mid-process, as the maker was killed before it could be completed. Jack obtains the remaining components, builds the EMP bomb, and detonates it, allowing him to enter Ryan's office.
Upon entering Rapture Central Control, Ryan makes one final announcement to Jack.
Ryan then activates Rapture's self-destruct mechanism, sending Atlas into a panic. With the urging of Atlas, Jack quickly moves to the room just outside of Ryan's office. There, he finds a number of newspaper clippings, notes, and photos attached to a wall and table, with the words "Would You Kindly" written in large red over them. Jack also finds audio recordings and pictures of familiar people, including various photographs of himself. Upon examination, it is revealed that Jack is the illegitimate son of Andrew Ryan and Jasmine Jolene, an exotic dancer. Jolene sold him as an embryo to Fontaine Futuristics, where he was genetically engineered and enhanced by Brigid Tenenbaum and Yi Suchong, and conditioned to respond to the activation phrase "Would You Kindly", which Atlas has repeatedly used throughout the game whenever tasking Jack with something.
Jack at last moves into the foyer of Ryan's office, only to find him casually playing golf behind a glass window. Ryan proceeds to explain Jack of his true origins and real purpose as an assassin, that his family and home never existed in the first place, and that he was the one who hijacked and crash-landed the plane near the lighthouse.
Ryan moves toward the door of his office and Jack follows. As the doors open, Jack meets Andrew Ryan face to face, and moves toward him.
With Ryan finally dead, Atlas' voice comes back over the radio. He orders Jack once again with the phrase "Would you kindly" to take Ryan's genetic key from his body and put it into the central control terminal. Jack obeys, and the self-destruct is averted. Atlas then reveals he is actually Frank Fontaine, having faked his demise and constructed the persona of the revolutionary years ago. Now in control of the city, Fontaine sends Security Machines to kill Jack, but he escapes them with the assistance of Tenenbaum's Little Sisters. They lead Jack through a crawlspace, but it gives way under him, causing him to fall through and rendering him unconscious.
Olympus Heights and Apollo Square
Jack awakens in Tenenbaum's Safe House under Olympus Heights, Rapture's luxury living and retail establishment. It is where the rescued Little Sisters stay in safety, and where Brigid Tenenbaum resides. Tenenbaum informs Jack that she has removed some of the mental conditioning that allowed Frank Fontaine to control him. However, she says that Fontaine still has some control over him, and that Jack should explore Suchong's apartment in the Mercury Suites complex, since it was the doctor who designed his mind.
After leaving Tenenbaum's hideout, Jack is contacted by Fontaine. Seeing that he no longer responds to the "Would You Kindly" command phrase, Fontaine uses another phrase to which Jack is conditioned to respond to. After he utters Code Yellow, Fontaine sends Jack's heart on a slow and painful course of eventually stopping. Jack finds his way to Suchong's apartment, where he discovers that there is an antidote to his genetic conditioning, but there is no trace of the antidote itself. Jack, with Tenenbaum's help, finds the first part of Lot 192 when he raids Fontaine's apartment, and the second part of Lot 192 in Suchong's clinic in Artemis Suites at Apollo Square. Jack is now free from Fontaine's control, and heads to Point Prometheus to confront the crime boss.
Point Prometheus and the Proving Grounds
Upon Jack surfacing in Point Prometheus, the location where Big Daddies and Little Sisters are made, he sights Fontaine just outside his bathysphere. Fontaine taunts Jack and tries to impede his progress as he follows, all the while showing off his remarkable strength from splicing. Fontaine retreats to his lair atop Rapture's highest building while sealing the access door and destroying the switch. Tenenbaum tells Jack that the only way he can get access to Proving Grounds and reach Fontaine is to have a Little Sister go through the small passage at the bottom of all the doors, and open them from the other side. Tenenbaum then explains that the only way for the Little Sisters to trust and follow Jack is if they think he is a Big Daddy. With Tenenbaum's guidance, Jack finds and equips himself with a Big Daddy suit, has his voice surgically altered, and has himself doused in pheromones to fool the Little Sisters into thinking that he is a Big Daddy.
Jack makes his way to the Proving Grounds, and now has to escort a Little Sister while she goes through the training course for ADAM gathering. Jack arrives at the elevator to the room where Fontaine resides, and takes the Little Sister's ADAM extraction needle, which according to Tenenbaum using it is the only way to defeat Fontaine.
As the elevator carries Jack toward his final destination, Frank Fontaine recounts their short history. When Jack emerges from the elevator, he finds Fontaine strapped to a metal device with several large tubes of ADAM pulsing straight into his body, no longer recognizably human. He is now roughly twice the height of a normal human being and possesses fiery, icy, and electric skin, as well as many deadly Plasmid attacks. Jack battles Fontaine, attacking and damaging him constantly, forcing Fontaine to repeatedly teleport back to his ADAM-injection device for stronger splicing. As Fontaine splices, Jack repeatedly drains his ADAM by injecting him with the extraction needle. Fontaine beats Jack to the ground and prepares to finish him off. Fortunately, he is weakened from the loss of so much ADAM, allowing Little Sisters emerging from their vents to swarm him. The girls pounce upon Fontaine, repeatedly stabbing him with their needles, eventually killing him.
Depending on the player's actions toward the Little Sisters, there are three possible endings to BioShock, defining Jack's actions regarding the Little Sisters and the fate of Rapture.
If during the game the player killed multiple Little Sisters, Tenenbaum states that Jack has succumbed to his lust for ADAM and snatches the nearest Little Sister when Fontaine is dead. Tenenbaum begins a monologue in which she discusses how disgusted she is with Jack for his cruelty, implying that he killed the Little Sisters. At the same time, a cutscene begins in which a naval submarine surveying the downed plane's crash site is surrounded by bathysphere pods from below. The sailors on the submarine's deck gawk as the dozens of bathyspheres pop open and Splicers jump out. The Splicers slaughter the submarine crew, and the camera shows what appears to be a nuclear warhead on board before the game ends.
If the player chose to both save and harvest several Little Sisters, this ending will be the same as the Evil Ending, but Tenenbaum's narration is in a sad, disappointed tone as opposed to an angry one.
If during the game the player rescued all of the Little Sisters, a cutscene plays in which Jack is offered control of Rapture by use of Fontaine's genetic key, but declines. Instead, he takes five Little Sisters to the surface and raises them, allowing them to have full, normal lives. When Jack eventually dies of old age, the now fully-grown girls comfort him at his bedside, becoming the family Jack never had.
1960-1967: Rapture's Metamorphosis
Jack's influence became less direct in Rapture, and Tenenbaum soon left with most of the remaining Little Sisters. The removal of the Gatherers would, however, have a chaotic effect on the city's denizens. Without them to collect and recycle ADAM from corpses littering Rapture, this genetic material became even harder to find, and the Splicers became more violent, unbalanced, and monstrous due to severe ADAM withdrawal.
In this period of great turmoil, an old political adversary of Andrew Ryan, Dr. Sofia Lamb, took control of the city. She started recruiting more and more Splicers through her "Rapture Family", a cult she created along with architect-turned-preacher Simon Wales, with bold promises of security, deliverance, and eternal life. She also revived the Protector and Gatherer Programs with scientist Dr. Gilbert Alexander. In response to tougher Splicers, he created a new type of Big Daddy, the Rumbler. His research also led him to create the Big Sisters, adolescent Little Sisters too old to carry out their function, but still under the effects of their mental conditioning. Lamb used that opportunity to create an army of Big Sisters to enforce her rule and to establish fear in the minds of Splicers not already devoted to her.
In order to create the first "Utopian", Lamb and Alexander conducted new experiments based on Jack's mental conditioning. Alexander agreed to be the subject of the operation, and would be imbued with the entire collective genius of Rapture via ADAM infusion (collected during the last seven years). He would then lose his own personal identity, allowing him to serve the common good without bias or self-interest. The plan failed, and Alexander was heavily mutated by the enormous amounts of ADAM he was imbued with. Deserted by Lamb, he was left abandoned in Fontaine Futuristics' laboratories, but could still control the entire facility through electronics. Before ADAM drove him completely mad, he recorded a series of instructions to kill the insane monstrosity that he would become.
1967-1968: Sea of Dreams (There's Something in the Sea)
- Main article: There's Something in the Sea
As ADAM was running short in Rapture, Lamb used the new Big Sisters to kidnap girls from the surface to create new Little Sisters, in order to bring the genetic substance back to Rapture, but also to conduct new experiments on her own daughter, Eleanor Lamb, and create the first real Utopian. This resulted in the phenomenon of red lights appearing all over the Atlantic coast and little girls being abducted by what some investigators thought was a single beast coming from the sea's depths.
Mark Meltzer, a father living with his family on the American east coast, was the first to notice the similarities in these abductions. He began following the cases, but then his own daughter, Cindy, was kidnapped as well. Meltzer began a long investigation to find his daughter and the rest of the missing girls. Helped by various contacts, he uncovered common points between the abductions and "the Vanishing", and thus began to search for Rapture. He eventually found evidence of its existence in clues left by Orrin Oscar Lutwidge, and in coded messages from his daughter left by Big Sisters.
Late in the autumn of 1968, he embarked on a journey across the Atlantic Ocean on a boat, the SS. Nelly Bly, to find the hidden city. However, as he approached his final destination, the boat was attacked by Splicers. The crew was slaughtered and the boat was left adrift. Mark escaped and entered the Lighthouse, finally reaching Rapture using a bathysphere.
Meanwhile in Rapture, Eleanor was kept in a sedated estate by her mother, so that her genetic experiments could finally succeed. Dreaming of the surface and of her lost Big Daddy, Eleanor still maintained some mental links with the new Little Sisters. Using the girls as intermediaries, Eleanor contacted Tenenbaum, who had returned to Rapture after spending the last eight years on the surface. Tenenbaum had returned to rescue the girls kidnapped by Lamb, but also to create a cure for the effects of ADAM with the help of The Thinker, the most developed computer in the fallen city. With the help of Tenenbaum and the Little Sisters, Eleanor reconfigured the disused Vita-Chamber in Adonis Luxury Resort in order to resurrect her bonded Big Daddy, the prototype Subject Delta.
1968: Rapture's Nightmare (BioShock 2)
- Main article: BioShock 2
In the middle of this chaos, Subject Delta (Δ), the first Big Daddy to have been successfully Pair Bonded, is resurrected at a Vita-Chamber under mysterious circumstances, and struggles to adapt to the current state of affairs. Searching for Eleanor Lamb, the Little Sister he was bonded with before his death, Delta confronts Sofia Lamb, to whom Eleanor is also of great interest. In his journey, he encounters Brigid Tenenbaum, who has returned to Rapture to rescue the new generation of Little Sisters. He also meets Augustus Sinclair, the shady owner of Sinclair Solutions, who guides him throughout his quest to find Eleanor.
The Adonis Luxury Resort
Subject Delta awakens ten years after his death at the very same location Sofia Lamb forced him to commit suicide. He receives a radio call from a woman, but the signal is very weak. Delta discovers that Rapture has decayed, and that his Little Sister is missing. Delta then encounters a Gatherer's Garden and has a moment of confusion when a young woman mentally communicates with him. This woman is Eleanor, his bonded Little Sister now ten years older. Eleanor has left a gift for him, the Electro Bolt Plasmid, which he injects himself with. As Delta recovers from the Plasmid's initial effects, he sees a Little Sister telling him to find Eleanor, before she is suddenly taken away by a Big Sister.
Delta restores power to the resort by charging the generator with electricity. He is then contacted again by the same woman when he first awoke, Brigid Tenenbaum, and she wishes to meet him at the Atlantic Express Train Station. While Delta tries to find her, he soon realizes what is happening. The people in Rapture have changed and little girls kidnapped from the surface have been made into new Little Sisters, while the woman responsible for his death, Sofia Lamb, has become the new leader of the city by establishing a cult following. When Delta finds another Little Sister in the lobby of the resort, he is attacked by a Big Sister. Delta battles her, but she escapes and floods the resort. Delta survives the ordeal thanks to his diving suit and leaves the resort going outside underwater and into the airlock system that leads to the Train Station.
The Atlantic Express Depot
After Delta enters the Atlantic Express, Tenenbaum guides him to the ticket booth where they will meet. On his way there, Tenenbaum tells him what has happened in the past ten years. The fall of Rapture was due to ADAM, which caused people to turn into vicious, mutated drug-addicts known as Splicers. The founder of Rapture, Andrew Ryan, has been murdered. Ryan's political rival, Sofia Lamb, now rules the city with an iron fist. After Delta goes through part of the station, he is trapped and contacted by Lamb. She sends Splicers to kill Delta, but before dying he falls through the weak floor and proceeds through the station. Delta is then contacted again by Eleanor Lamb, who begs him to find her, and has arranged for him to receive the Telekinesis Plasmid.
When he is near the ticket booth, Delta is informed by Tenenbaum that he is dying because of the Pair Bond Mechanism and that his bonded Sister, Eleanor Lamb, is waiting for him at Fontaine Futuristics. Delta finally meets Tenenbaum in the ticket booth of the railway station where she has already saved some Little Sisters. Before Tenenbaum can even state her plan to Delta, Sofia Lamb sends her Splicers to attack the station. Delta protects Tenenbaum and the girls while they escape to a new safe location. Tenenbaum leaves Delta, but introduces him to a rather suspicious new ally known as Augustus Sinclair. Sinclair tells Delta to go into the train and meet him at Ryan Amusements.
While driving the train, Delta has to make a sudden stop because the railway station exit is iced over. Sinclair states that in order to melt the ice, Delta will need a Plasmid known as Incinerate!, which enables the user to throw fire from their hand. The Plasmid can be found in the amusement park but Delta needs a ticket to enter. While Delta searches for said ticket, Sinclair explains to him that he is an old Protector model known as an Alpha Series. Sinclair also reveals his own agenda, which is to sell Rapture's wonderment to the surface world. Sinclair additionally explains to Delta that in order to buy the Plasmid, he will need ADAM from a Little Sister. Delta enters the park and is directed to the El Dorado Lounge, where he fights and kills a Big Daddy and adopts its Little Sister to search for and harvest ADAM-filled corpses around the area.
The amusement park has displays that show the city's achievements and Andrew Ryan's reasoning for building Rapture. The museum tells the story of Rapture's history-in-the-making. The main part of the park is Journey to the Surface, a ride where children travel in Bathysphere-like tram cars and go through a city-like setting that shows how the people's work, art, lives, money, and freedom are taken away on the surface world by God and Government, all designed to scare children to never go to the surface.
After the Little Sister has finished gathering from the corpses in the park, Sinclair informs Delta that to get the remainder of the ADAM, he has to either rescue the Little Sister using a special Plasmid created by Dr. Tenenbaum, which will restore her humanity, but will give Delta minimal ADAM, or he can get more ADAM by harvesting the slug inside her, killing her in the process. Either way, Delta obtains enough ADAM to buy the Incinerate! Plasmid and heads to the Hall of the Future where a Gatherer's Garden is situated. After Delta purchases the Incinerate! Plasmid, he is attacked again by a Big Sister but he manages to kill her. Delta then returns to the train station and melts the ice. It is here that Delta meets Sinclair face-to-face.
Sinclair enters the train before they are ambushed by Lamb's Splicers. Delta fights them off, and with Sinclair on board, the two depart to Pauper's Drop.
Delta arrives at a poor-housing district known as Pauper's Drop, when suddenly Rapture is put on a citywide lockdown by Lamb. Knowing that they can't proceed, Sinclair states the only way they can continue on to Fontaine Futuristics is to acquire the override key from the Drop's governor, Grace Holloway, who resides in Sinclair's own hotel The Sinclair Deluxe. As Delta proceeds through the Drop, he learns that Grace was a patient of Lamb as well as a former jazz singer, and that she took custody of Eleanor when Lamb was imprisoned. When Eleanor was abducted, Grace felt she had failed Lamb. However, one day Grace saw Eleanor, now transformed into a Little Sister, being accompanied by Subject Delta. The Big Daddy broke Grace's jaw when she approached Eleanor, thus ending her career as a singer. Grace has wanted revenge upon Delta ever since.
As Delta approaches the hotel, a Brute Splicer throws debris in his way, blocking the entrance, and the only way he can brush away the rubble is to get the Drill Dash weapon upgrade. To obtain this, Delta needs to research Brute Splicers with his Research Camera. After doing so, Delta returns to the hotel and clears the debris. Delta reaches Grace on the top floor, where she is waiting for him in a safe room. She allows Delta to take the override key from her, but it is left to the player the choice to kill Grace or spare her life. Sparing Grace changes her view on Big Daddies and she sends Delta some Security Bots to aid him. After using the key to lift the lockdown, Delta and Sinclair leave Pauper's Drop behind.
On route to Dionysus Park, Father Simon Wales blows Delta out of the train with a torpedo. After Delta awakens underwater on the seabed, he figures that he is between Dionysus Park and a place called Siren Alley, originally Rapture's mason's quarter, now turned into a pleasure district. Sinclair tells him that he is trapped and running out of air in the flooded Dionysus, and advises Delta to go into Siren Alley and drain out the Park from Pumping Station 5. Upon entering Siren Alley, Delta meets Simon Wales, the preacher of Lamb's religion. Wales preaches in the Pumping Station which is locked by a code, and his brother, Daniel Wales, knows the code. Daniel resides in a brothel called The Pink Pearl.
Delta enters the Pink Pearl and fights Daniel, killing him. He obtains the door's code and heads deeper into Siren Alley, where he discovers the Little Sister's Orphanage where Eleanor was taken to before being transformed into a Little Sister and bonded to Delta.
Delta then enters the Pumping Station and encounters Simon. Delta kills him and collects his override key, which he uses to drain Dionysus Park and save Sinclair. Sofia Lamb, however, overloads the district's pumps and floods Siren Alley, killing everyone inside except Delta, who makes his way to Dionysus Park.
Delta enters Dionysus Park, and Sinclair reveals to him that the place was Lamb's property used by her to gather and entertain her followers, but one day it was flooded, killing everyone. Delta is then contacted by a man named Stanley Poole, a former reporter of the Rapture Tribune who wishes to meet him at the ticket booth. Delta arrives at the meeting place, only to find that Stanley has locked the train car and holed himself up in the ticket booth. Stanley states that Little Sisters have come into the park and have started to gather ADAM from corpses. He is paranoid about the recycled ADAM containing the memories of its users, which could reveal his dirty secrets to Lamb. Stanley orders Delta to find and deal with the Sisters spread around the Park, and will then let him proceed on his way. While Delta goes after the Little Sisters, Stanley reveals to Delta that he was originally a diver who found Rapture while on an underwater expedition, and was nicknamed "Johnny Topside" by the city's populace. But Ryan, believing Johnny to be a CIA spook, had him arrested and imprisoned.
As Delta rescues or harvests each Little Sister, Eleanor shares with him her own memories of past events. Apparently, Sofia was arrested by Ryan because of her conflicting ideals. She left Stanley in charge of Dionysus Park, and thus her money, but he used Lamb's wealth to splice-up and throw mad parties. One day, young Eleanor confronted Stanley and threatened to tell her mother about what he had been doing while in her absence. Poole panicked and sold Eleanor to the Little Sister's Orphanage, revealing he was the reason the girl was turned into a Little Sister. Poole got the news that Lamb would be returning, and in an act of paranoia sabotaged the Park's drainage pipe line, flooding Dionysus and drowning all potential witnesses. Stanley wanted Delta to get rid of the Little Sisters as they had knowledge of his past deeds. Delta is contacted by Lamb, who says that she knew all along that Poole had flooded the park and that he was a spy for Ryan, planted as a mole in The Rapture Family by Sinclair. Lamb also reveals that Poole sold "Johnny Topside" out to Ryan, making Poole also guilty for his transformation into Subject Delta. Lamb overrides and opens the locked door to the ticket booth, and it is left to the player to decide Stanley's fate. Delta and Sinclair then proceed to Fontaine Futuristics.
Delta is now close to where Eleanor is being held captive. Sinclair informs him that Sofia is injecting large amounts of ADAM containing the memories of the citizens of Rapture into Eleanor, so that she will become The People's Daughter, the first true Utopian. As Delta approaches Fontaine Futuristics' main building, a man named Gilbert Alexander contacts him using a pre-recorded transmission. Alexander states that he worked on the Big Daddy development program in the past and that his now spliced, inhumane self resides in the Laboratories. He is currently under the W.Y.K. effect by Lamb, and the former, sane Alexander wishes to be killed by whomever is listening, which happens to be Delta.
Delta encounters a unique Security Bot being controlled by the spliced, demented Gilbert Alexander, now calling himself 'Alex the Great'. Throughout Fontaine Futuristics, Alexander's past self tries to help Delta by way of old messages, as 'Alex the Great' tries to impede his progress.
The former Alexander reveals the password that will allow Delta to enter the security room, and unlock the doors to the Laboratories where 'Alex the Great' resides, however, the bot controlled by 'Alex the Great' short-circuits the voice activated lock that will allow Delta to enter. Sinclair informs Delta that the only way he can now enter is to destroy the control panels on the Security Shut-down switches scattered around the facility. While doing this, Delta discovers that before he was turned into a Big Daddy, he was a show-room Plasmid Product Tester for investors and many other citizens who wished to see how the Plasmids work. After Delta destroys all of the Control Panels, the 'Alex the Great' bot shuts down, allowing Delta to use the voice activated lock to the security room. He enters and uses the main switch, opening the way to the Laboratories.
Delta proceeds to the Laboratories by going outside underwater. He comes across a Fuel Station and a wall covered in boulders, a facade to hide the secret entrance to Persephone where Eleanor is kept. Sinclair explains that to enter Persephone, Delta needs to get a genetic key from 'Alex the Great'. Delta enters the Laboratories, and finds the mutated 'Alex the Great' residing in a large tank of liquid, who then hides away. Alexander says that the only way to lure 'Alex the Great' out is to obtain four special plants infused with ADAM. After retrieving the plants and luring 'Alex' out, Delta takes a gene sample from him and makes the genetic key needed to access Persephone and find Eleanor. Gil Alexander has a last message explaining that the button on the lab's control panel will electrify the tank containing 'Alex the Great', killing him, and asks for this to be done as a final wish, while the current Alex begs for mercy instead. Once again, this choice is left to the player. After dealing with Gil one way or the other, Delta takes the key and goes outside to put it in the Fuel Station, revealing the secret entrance to Persephone hidden by boulders. Delta enters it and takes the elevator down to find Eleanor.
The Persephone Penal Colony
As Delta rides the elevator down and makes his way to where Eleanor is being held captive, Sofia Lamb attempts to stop him one last time by sending two Big Sisters to kill him. After Delta kills the Big Sisters, he uses the quarantine switch to the glass door of Eleanor's chamber. The door does not open and Delta loses contact with Sinclair on the radio. Sofia appears before Delta inside the chamber with Eleanor, who is in a deep sleep. Sofia reveals that Eleanor brought Delta back using the Little Sisters to take his genetic code and inject it into a hacked Vita-Chamber. Sofia also says that Eleanor has been watching every move Delta made on his quest to find her and that she has been influenced by his decisions on how to survive. Sofia is distraught by her daughter's actions and explains the only way to end the bond between her and Delta is to put The Pair Bond Mechanism failsafe into effect. This failsafe was installed into all Alpha Series Big Daddies, including Delta, forcing a Big Daddy into a coma leading to eventual death if his assigned Little Sister is separated from him. Sofia takes Eleanor's pillow and smothers her with it, making Delta collapse as Eleanor's heart stops beating
Eleanor survives her mother's attempt on her life, but is left very weak. Delta awakens and is contacted by Eleanor, who informs him that their bond is now broken and he will die within hours. Delta is restrained on a gurney and sealed in a secure room guarded by Lamb's goons. Eleanor, however, has an escape plan, and sends a Little Sister to give Delta an injection that will enable him to take control of the girl's mind. Delta can now see through the Little Sister's eyes and sees Rapture as a heavenly place instead of the nightmarish reality that it is. Eleanor explains that she needs a Big Sister suit to fight by Delta's side. Delta then controls the Little Sister to gather all of the various parts of the suit and take them to Eleanor. This is where the player's choices affect the storyline: if Delta rescued the Little Sisters, then Eleanor will follow in his footsteps, becoming a forgiving and loving person. If Delta harvested the Little Sisters instead, then Eleanor will become selfish and cruel, caring only about her own survival. Either way, Eleanor, now wearing the Big Sister armor, breaks Delta free and they proceed to Inner Persephone to find Sinclair.
Lamb is devastated by Eleanor's rebellion, and is willing to bomb Persephone, bringing it down to the bottom of the trench below, killing everyone inside. Delta and Eleanor find Augustus Sinclair's lifeboat which they intend to escape in, but Sinclair is missing. Lamb puts the penal colony on lockdown, trapping Delta and Eleanor. They try to find the security override key to lift the lockdown, and find an Alpha Series Big Daddy with it.
Lamb reveals that this Big Daddy is Sinclair, now named Subject Omega(Ω), having been captured and transformed by the Rapture Family. An agonizing Sinclair explains that he still has some self-will remaining, and pleads with Delta to kill him, preferring to die than live under Lamb's control. His last wish is for Delta and Eleanor to take the lifeboat and escape. After Delta fights and kills Sinclair, he takes the key from his body and ends the lockdown.
Lamb is determined to sink the facility and turns her attention to the lifeboat, bombing its ballast tanks, causing it to flood and become too heavy to launch. Eleanor thinks the only way to get rid of the water is to boil it away, but this will require a large amount of ADAM, which will have to be obtained from the few Little Sisters kept in the Pediatric Wards. The player's past choices will affect the storyline at this point, as what the player has done to the Little Sisters determines what Eleanor will do to the girls to get the ADAM. If the player rescued the Little Sisters, then Eleanor will also rescue the girls and transport them to the lifeboat. All of their ADAM combined can boil the water away. If the player harvested the Little Sisters, then Eleanor will harvest all of the girls, to get the ADAM and boil off the water by herself.
When the water has boiled away, Eleanor informs Delta that the elevator shaft is flooded and that flooding the facility will equalize the pressure. Delta destroys the water conduits, flooding Persephone. As the final series of bombs in the facility detonate, Eleanor races with Delta to reach the lifeboat's elevator. A set of charges go off directly in their path, forcing Eleanor to teleport to the rising lifeboat. Delta is stunned by the explosion and stranded on the outside of the lifeboat, but manages to cling to the ascending vessel as his heart weakens more and more. Eleanor makes it safely inside and finds her mother there, drowning inside the flooded lifeboat. The player's choices that were made earlier in the game will now determine the outcome of the storyline and the final ending. The player's decision to spare or kill three previously encountered non-playable characters (Grace Holloway, Stanley Poole, and Gilbert Alexander), and how the player dealt with the Little Sisters, will affect whether Eleanor takes pity on her mother and gives her oxygen to save her life, or whether she pulls her down to suffocate her. It will also influence Eleanor's behavior in the final moments of a dying Subject Delta on the lifeboat's outside platform, after it emerges near the Lighthouse.
Eleanor drowns her mother as she tries to reach a pocket of air in the flooded escape pod. If Delta has rescued all of the Little Sisters and killed every NPC then Eleanor will drown her mother. Sofia also drowns if Delta has harvested at least one Little Sister and killed at least one NPC. Depending on how the Little Sisters have been treated Eleanor says different things during this sequence.
As Sofia Lamb struggles to reach a pocket of air, Eleanor will hand her a small air tank to breathe from, allowing her to live. If Delta has rescued all of the Little Sisters and been merciful towards at least one of the NPCs, then Sofia Lamb will be saved from drowning by her daughter. If Delta has harvested at least one Little Sister but spared all the NPCs Eleanor will also let her mother live. Depending on how the Little Sisters have been treated Eleanor says different things during this sequence.
Eleanor brutally harvests Delta's ADAM against his will, preserving his experience and survival instincts for herself. She then watches as the dead bodies of Splicers rise to the surface. The corpse-filled ocean, which is crashing violently as a powerful thunderstorm rages overhead, foreshadows the bloody future the world will face, as it will now confront the full might of Rapture's godlike genetic technologies wielded by the ruthless genius and unimaginable cruelty of Eleanor.
If Delta rescues at least one Little Sister and harvests at least one Little Sister he gets a choice ending, in which he can choose to either live or die.
Delta allows Eleanor to preserve his mind and essence within herself rather than let him die. Eleanor then calmly watches as the dead bodies of Splicers rise to the surface. The corpse-filled ocean, which is crashing violently as a powerful thunderstorm rages overhead, foreshadows the bloody future the world might face, as it may now have to confront the full might of Rapture's godlike genetic technologies wielded by the genius and cruelty of Eleanor.
Delta refuses to let Eleanor preserve him, possibly feeling that she shouldn't be tainted with the essence of a murderer. Having used up the lives of the Little Sisters to secure their escape, Eleanor laments being all alone in the world, and she drags her dying guardian to the edge of the submersible. As she cries in misery and pain, she thanks Delta for giving her freedom. Delta looks at his reflection in the calm sea, while a gloomy sky blocks out the sun. Feeling his life fading away, he uses the last of his strength to look at Eleanor one last time before collapsing, his view shifting to the dim lighthouse in the distance, noticeable as it desperately struggles to shine in the darkness.
If Delta rescued every Little Sister, then on the surface he will draw his last breath in Eleanor's arms and she will lovingly extract his ADAM, allowing him to become a part of her. Eleanor and the rescued Little Sisters gather together under bright warm weather as she contemplates her future potential in the world.
The following events are occurring some time during the course of BioShock 2.
After leaving Subject Delta in the hands of Sinclair at the Atlantic Express Depot, Brigid Tenenbaum turns her attention to the true reason of her return to Rapture. She makes contact with Charles Milton Porter, the original founder of Rapture Central Computing and creator of The Thinker, "Rapture Operational Data Interpreter Network" (RODIN for short), a supercomputer powered by an ADAM based artificial intelligence which, among other things, controls Rapture's automated devices and security systems. She learned that this supercomputer may help her to create a cure for ADAM sickness, but it is kept in Minerva's Den by Reed Wahl, Porter's former colleague gone mad by splicing. To infiltrate the high-technology district, she reactivated another Big Daddy of the Alpha Series, Subject Sigma (Σ). The path to The Thinker is difficult as Wahl takes immediate note of Sigma's arrival at the Den and sends his forces after him. Led by Porter via radio, Sigma reaches first the Operations sector where he creates a jamming device in order to pass through Sofia Lamb's torpedo defense grid, which prevent bathyspheres from leaving Rapture. Then after overcoming Wahl's defenses, Sigma finally reaches The Thinker's Core where Wahl awaits, trying to solve the equation that he believes will help him solve the mystery around Porter's return and Sigma's reactivation.
After Sigma kills Wahl, Dr. Tenenbaum tells him to print The Thinker's hard-code out. As the computer scans Sigma, it is revealed that he is actually Charles Milton Porter himself, and the Porter that had been guiding him throughout the Den was The Thinker impersonating him. Tenenbaum directs Porter to his office with the promise that they will meet soon. There among the several possessions of Porter, an audio diary can be found recording the first use of the personality duplication program on The Thinker, which successfully managed to simulate Pearl Porter, Charles' deceased wife for whom he never stopped mourning. Once Porter leaves the office, he arrives at his private bathysphere dock. Inside the bathysphere is Tenenbaum waiting for him. It is revealed that the two reached the surface and she managed to undo Porter's Big Daddy conditioning, restoring his humanity with the help of the recovered processing capabilities of The Thinker. As a final goodbye to his wife Pearl, Charles stands by her grave and leaves a bouquet of flowers and an apology letter, finally resigned to let her go.
1980s and Onward: Rapture's Later Fate
Nothing is known of the ultimate fate of Rapture and its remaining survivors since the events of 1968. By the 1980s, the American television channel PHE broadcasted a two-part episode of Fact From Myth, titled Rapture: A Modern-Day Atlantis?, centered around the few pieces of evidence and stories of the city's existence to the surface. Rapture remained undiscovered to the rest of the world, for at least at the time of the release of this documentary.
- Andrew Ryan's Audio Diary: The Great Chain Rattles
- Brigid Tenenbaum's Audio Diary: Finding the Sea Slug
- Brigid Tenenbaum's Audio Diary: Fontaine's Smugglers
- Sullivan's Audio Diary: Smuggling Ring
- Brigid Tenenbaum's Audio Diary: Adam Discovery
- Brigid Tenenbaum's Audio Diary: ADAM Explained
- Brigid Tenenbaum's Audio Diary: Why Just Girls?
- Frank Fontaine's Audio Diary: An Empty Niche
- Andrew Ryan's Audio Diary: Lamb the Problem, Sinclair the Solution
- Stanley Poole's Audio Diary: Mole
- Brigid Tenenbaum's Audio Diary: Mass Producing ADAM
- Bill McDonagh's Audio Diary: Fontaine's Army
- Bill McDonagh's Audio Diary: Ryan Takes F Futuristics