Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Bioshock Infinite and its perfect representation of America

The game: Bioshock Infinite, is by far my favorite game of all time, slowly beating out Myst. (Yes, I still love that game!)  The world that is created in the fictional floating city of Columbia, seems so familiar and so interesting while being a frightening world in reality.  The thing is, I have seen some places in America that have parts of what is being represented in that game, but no where comes as close to the similarity than Silver Dollar City.  Silver Dollar City is an amusement park set up within the outskirts of Branson, Missouri.  It has most of the city representing a fictional time they call the "World Exposition of 1882".  History buffs will quickly remember that there was no 1882 Exposition in America, so the concept is already flawed, but they go along with it.  Silver Dollar City, as I mentioned earlier, has a very large portion of its park, designed to look like it is from the year 1882, complete with an enormously large amount of modern American flags, along with their original mid 1800's counterparts.  There are many buildings set up to resemble those from the 1800's, complete with craftsmen inside such as a glass maker, blacksmith or taffy puller.  All of these buildings, still have the crafts people doing the crafts.  So, the person working at the blacksmith shop, really is a blacksmith and those swords, knives and other gifts were really made by him and his metals.  The glass factory had two guys working the glass on an elevated stage so people could watch and the items they made were for sale in the glass store opposite them.  The whole area was a mixture of these craftsmen and craftswomen, food venders and rides.

While Bioshock Infinite's world of Columbia takes place in 1912 and Silver Dollar City is in 1882, there was many things that were very similar:

Silver Dollar City is stuck in this 1882 world of American nationalism or zealot patriotism.  Like the above picture from the Bioshock Infinite world, you can see the use of the "red, white and blue" on everything from umbrellas to signs while selling items of America like flags or toys.  There were so many American decorations on the buildings, flags hung from the light posts, American flag pins worn by the workers and everyone who worked there was in period clothing.  Everyone, from the person selling frozen lemonade to the teen girl running the roller coaster, were in a recreation of an 1880 clothing piece.  The men were in hats and vests and long sleeves and then women were in bustle dresses.

Now, while the above pictures are from a fictional world within a game, some the elements below from Silver Dollar City appear to fit easily within that fictional world.
The world of Silver Dollar City is stuck in the 1880's, which is funny because so much of that style is what is in the actual Bioshock Infinite Video game. Even the trash cans are decorated in such a way:
There were rollercoasters outside of this sign:
An one outside of this one:
With American flags hanging from every post, sign, tree or light:

Let me say this, as weird as Silver Dollar City was, if you were dressed up in Edwardian clothing, you would have fit in exactly and everyone would have thought you had worked there and was just in costume.  Also, I was surprised that no one was dressed up as the main characters from Bioshock Infinite.  As the location would make for an awesome cosplay event. 

1 comment:

  1. My son said today while we were in Silver Dollar City that it looked exactly like Bioshock Infinite. I wonder if they modeled the game setting after Silver Dollar City.