Exclusivity deals these days are complicated things. When BioShock was originally announced everyone expected it would be released on all suitable platforms, but it ended up being an Xbox 360 exclusive. Throughout the months leading up to its release rumours about a PS3 version were cropping up on an almost daily basis, and we tracked down Markus Wilding, International PR director, 2K, to find out what exactly the deal was with BioShock on Xbox 360 and the game now coming to PS3.
"Originally we announced BioShock as a next-gen game and didn't specify platforms," stated Wilding. "Then we were approached by Microsoft and at that time that deal made perfect sense for everybody, so we did it. As far as exclusivity deals go these days, they expire after a certain time, and then it was up to us to decide if it would make sense to release a PS3 version such a long time after the 360 version. BioShock has such a huge fan base and we literally got emails almost every day from people requesting, asking for a PS3 version or asking if it would be possible.
"Basically we chose the right time and we had the opportunity after a while, and we said all right, we'll go for it. Obviously we couldn't announce it for a while. Had we announced it at the time we launched the 360 version, basically we'd nullify that deal, so we had to work it so both parties would be pleased. That's the basic story. There's no big surprise in there. As long as you have an exclusivity, you cannot talk about other platforms."
What about the rumours of a PS3 version being in development before the Xbox 360 game shipped to stores? We asked Markus when development on the PS3 version of BioShock started.
"The development basically started, let's see, I can't put a finger on it, but certainly not right after we shipped the 360 version, because at that time we didn't know if it'd make sense to release a PS3 version," he stated. "BioShock was a big team, but it wasn't like 200 people working, so it wasn't like we could say "hey, let's work on a version that might not even come to light". So I can't give you an exact date, but after the 360 version was done. When the right time came we could announce it and we did."