There's a new breed of baddie coming to BioShock Infinite. Dubbed the "Heavy Hitters," these menacing foes are another in a long line of defense against Booker DeWitt, protagonist and trespasser in the floating city of Columbia.
The 'Motorized Patriot' is a machine that wields a mini-gun and dons a horrifying wax mask, modeled after George Washington. Unlike the residents of Columbia, Heavy Hitters are relentless in their attack, and don't hesitate.
"We perceived a lack of variety in the enemies in BioShock," Irrational Games boss Ken Levine tells me over the phone. "There tend to be a lot of Splicers with weapons -- that was the primary thing you dealt with -- or there were a couple of them with plasmids. And then you had the Big Daddies. We really wanted to broaden out the pool [for BioShock Infinite]."
A total of four 'Heavy Hitters' are featured in BioShock Infinite. The hunkering, horse-throwing beast from the original gameplay trailer -- dubbed 'The Handyman' -- is another. Each has unique characteristics, and each ask for different tactics if you hope to defeat them.
Irrational's intent isn't for Heavy Hitters be the 'Infinite versions' of BioShock's iconic Big Daddy, Levine says. It was a matter of expanding the variety of enemies for players.
"We're not trying to recreate anything 'note-for-note.' If I have a C-Sharp in BioShock, I'm not really looking to necessarily have a C-Sharp in BioShock Infinite," Levine explains before apologizing for being "a music nerd."
"I want the kind of vibe to feel the same and the piece to feel like they're connected." There are "a ton of things" that connect the two games, he says, but only because the team feels their inclusion "organically worked" in BioShock Infinite. Irrational doesn't want to fall into the trap of feeling forced to add something to its next game, simply because it was prevalent in the first one in the series.
BioShock Infinite launches for the PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 on October 16.