While Irrational Games and gamers in general are still far away from seeing a PS Vita version of BioShock come to life, Joystiq was able to sit down with Ken Levine and chat about the portable iteration of their adored IP. Levine is the Creative Director and Co-Founder of Irrational Games, and he is one of the most respected voices in the industry.
When asked about the PS Vita edition of BioShock, Levine admitted that Irrational was still very much in the paper design phase of the product. That almost goes without saying as their team is likely entirely dedicated to their work on BioShock Infinite. While he wouldn’t talk specifics about the PS Vita project, Levine did say that it would be independent of the adventure in Rapture and in the upcoming Columbia. More than that, Levine expressed his studio’s desire to create an expressive PS Vita entry:
“I think for us, the idea we have is a really good expression on a platform like that [Vita]. It’s a different goal. And it has to sort of have its own voice in the franchise. If it just feels like a quieter voice in the franchise, I don’t think that works. For us.”
Oftentimes, when portable versions of much larger brands are made, third party companies will take the reigns on game development with the blessing of the console or PC studios. For instance, while God of War is developed by Sony Santa Monica, the PSP versions of the franchise were handled by Ready at Dawn. It takes a great small studio to pull off a good portable version of a well known console standard.
With that in mind, Levine did say that Irrational might give some consideration to letting an outside company handle the portable development of BioShock for the PS Vita. However, he did indicate that they wouldn’t do it unless they were absolutely sure the game would fit their current standard of quality.
BioShock Infinite, the next console and PC entry from Irrational, is currently planned to release sometime in 2012.