Bioshock Infinite Guide Part 1: 1999 Mode


The first thing you need to realize is that this game was rumored to originally be a new IP separate of Bioshock, so if you’re ever wondering why it’s a Bioshock game then that question may or may not ever be answered…

I bought the PS3 version which included a copy of the first Bioshock on the disc, not as a download. I did this because I have fond memories of the world of Rapture and will play that game again, especially after this wonderful game. I never finished Bioshock 2 because it just felt like a cash-in, but I
might finish that off now too.

Bioshock Infinite takes place in the clouds, but the parallels between Columbia and Rapture are more than coincidence. You have the same powers, similar weapons, similar damsel in distress, and similar god/king main villain taunting you throughout. I don’t need to say much about the story other than as you might know, the ending is one that really ups the ante for video game stories. If the game were bad and still had this ending it might still score highly enough to warrant owning.


The gameplay is kind of the weakest part of the game. The gear you get is often useless, most of your vigors will be abandoned, and unless you’re up against extreme odds you’ll probably find most fights are easy. They say normal mode is too easy, and I just played on hard anyway and the game seemed about right. I’m curious to play on normal just to see how easy it is. The hardest mode isn’t too brutal, which is fine because any more challenging and it would be pure frustration.

Really there is no debate. If you like a good story, beautiful environment, love Boardwalk Empire or anything from another time period, and dig sleek
combat mechanics, then there’s no excuse to not own this game. It’s a must-play for sure, and after finding out about it I almost wish I had bought the
mega-edition with the Songbird figure…

This is a TIER 1 game, must own, instant classic. It just falls short of surpassing the original game.

Everything is solid, and the only criticisms come against the lack of total imagination in the combat and maybe the ending isn’t flawless to match how
beautifully-crafted it is.

Starter Tips

  • Possession is the key to the game. You hardly need any other vigors.
  • Explore to find money and items. Money isn’t as plentiful as you would think.
  • Here is my initial list of the weapons in terms of best to worst:  RPG, Sniper Rifle, Burstgun, Crank Gun, Hand Cannon, Hail Fire, Volley Gun, Repeater, Machine Gun, Shotgun,Carbine, Pistol,Heater
  • You might think swapping out empty weapons is great, but often you’ll findammo for it not long after.
  • You keep the reserve ammo for guns, so it’s not like when you discard a weapon you lose all the ammo you had; I guess only the clip.
  • Upgrading weapons is risky because, again, you won’t be using them at all times.
  • So it’s likely best to not upgrade so many vigors as they are very expensive and you’ll ikely use vigors less anyway.
  • The Winter Shield gear is nifty. I didn’t really need it on hard, but it’s something to think about in 1999 mode.
  • Murder of Crows stuns Handymen.
  • Traps have their uses, but it’s very limited.
  • Food and drink with negative effects are likely small.
  • You can possess all vending machines to drop some money. This is only really useful if there is some extra salt nearby, so it’s essentially free money.
  • On your Infusions, the shield is the best thing to upgrade first. You don’t need to max out salts, and health is pretty valuable. But you can’t go all-in on one, you have to spread them out. There are a total of 24, plus 5 more for those with the DLC.
  • Elizabeth will point out items you may miss. It appears as a blue glow.


Here are some abbreviations I will use in this guide:

abbr weapon abbr plasmid
SR Sniper Rifle RtS Return to Sender
CG Crank Gun Fire Devil’s Kiss
VG Volley Gun Raven A crow man
BG Burst Gun POSS Possession
HC Hand Cannon BB Bucking Bronco
MG Machine Gun Crows Murder of Crows

1999 Mode

The below walkthrough was made on 1999 mode. The first draft done on Hard mode is just digital dust. That’s right, I wrote two walkthroughs of this game…

This is the hardest mode in the game. It unlocks naturally by beating the game, or by entering the infamous Konami Code at the main menu. I would highly recommend against just jumping into this mode first because it’s better to approach it after you know what to expect. But it’s up to you.

You could also unlock this using the Konami Code from the main menu. It goes like this:


I assume the PC commands are whatever the Cancel and Confirm commands are.


Differences from Hard mode:

  • Enemies hit harder and have more health
  • You die faster (melee hits are brutal)
  • Harder to find ammo (not really)
  • Fewer respawn points, respawns cost $100 and if you can’t afford it you return to the main menu.
  • Can’t change difficulty
  • Can’t use the objective finder
  • You don’t want to use Dollar Bill vendors because that would ruin the top achievement/trophy in the game during this mode.

If you can’t afford the $100 revive fee then you return to the main menu. I don’t think that means you fully restart, you just can’t continue from where
you got stuck at and with the spawn points more spread out this may mean you fall back a long way. So if you’re on this mode you want to keep like $500 on you at all times. $300 if you already beat the game on Hard mode and know what you’re doing.

My advice:

  • Get Possession upgraded ASAP.
  • Only get a few vigor upgrades.
  • Comb every area as everything is more valuable since you need all the money you can get and you don’t want to visit a Dollar Bill.
  • Upgrade the lesser weapons too; at least their damage. The Hail Fire, Heater, and Volley Gun were the only guns I never used in my 1999 mode run.
  • Winter Shield chestpiece will ensure you pass the final act of the game.


The Grand Achievement

Scavenger Hunt – Beat 1999 Mode without using a Dollar Bill vending machine.

The aspect of this mode that provides less ammo is over-estimated. Whenever I was low on ammo the game gave me more when I went looting. You should cap out lockpicks by the time you reach the bank, and enough lockpicks are provided to open everything and I believe I point all of them out along the way – and Elizabeth helps point them out too.

Season Pass?

So there isn’t a whole lot of info out on this, but I suppose it’s going to be 3 DLC for just $20 and you get the the early bird pack. This pack includes
4 upgraded pieces of gear, MG and pistol skins, and 5 Infusions. The gear is pretty good actually, upgraded pieces of ones you can get in the game, but
don’t overvalue the 5 extra Infusion – they aren’t that much more in the long run, but you can cap everything.

If you know me you know I hate any and all DLC, but this game was so fun and the story so interesting that this might be one of the few times that the DLC is required. Now I’m not saying it is because after all 3 come out we might regret it, but since they will later cost $10 each without the bonus now, then I would say this is actually a decent bargain. As for our purposes here on this 1999 run, the gear that gives you a little

more ammo and the extra Infusions might come in handy. I’m not saying buy it, but if you’re in a good place right now and love this game a lot, I think I’ll finally come around and get this DLC – because I just did.