Bioshock: The Collection speaks for itself, really. It's a 1080p remastering of BioShock 1 and BioShock 2, with BioShock Infinite coming along for the barbershop-quartet ride without needing an update. The Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions of BioShock Infinite, though, will benefit from having PC-level graphics, which I was privy to experience (on the PS4, at least) at a private meeting in 2K's studio in Novato.
The best part is that those who already own Bioshock and Bioshock 2 on PC will receive free upgrades for those games to match their improved counterparts in Bioshock: The Collection. While the procedure on how this will happen is not yet final, I hope that they will not simply overwrite the existing games and to have some option for players to experience the games with their original textures. There won't be a button like The Master Chief Collection where you can switch between the original and the remaster.
And that's not to underscore the 60fps graphical overhaul of Bioshock: The Collection. Having experienced about an hour each of Bioshock and Bioshock 2 in multiple areas of the game, I noted the remaster's brilliant attention to detail—the rippling water effects, the engraving of the lighthouse's golden metal door, the clarity of the neon lights that shine throughout Rapture. Blind Squirrel Games has done admirable work so far in re-texturing the city while leaving BioShock's groundbreaking gameplay and story alone.
The only awkward moments came from a few sofas and cabinets that didn't seem as polished as the rest of the objects around them, but that's a nitpick. If anything, the overall improvements enhance the opulence and decadence of the art-deco architecture and styling, making it more convincing as to why anyone would want to emigrate to Andrew Ryan's objectivist underwater fantasy.
And if you need another reason to replay BioShock—do you really need one?—the remastered BioShock will come with director's commentary in the form of a ten-episode interview with Ken Levine and Shawn Robertson as hosted by Geoff Keighley. These won't be unlocked automatically, though, and you will need to find golden reels placed throughout the game in not-so-hidden places. Luckily, just like the indicators in the pause menu that show how many Little Sisters are in the level, you will see how many golden reels there are as well so that you don't pass one by.
To round out the package, BioShock: The Collection will come with all of the single-player DLC in the series, omitting that multiplayer content of BioShock 2 as they will not be reinstating the online servers for the game. This includes BioShock 2's Minerva Den, BioShock Infinite's Burial at Sea, and BioShock 1's Museum of Orphaned Concepts, an exhibit displaying the art that Irrational Games discarded during the development process.
BioShock: The Collection releases on September 13 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.