Irrational recently hired a network programmer, a move that has led to speculation that BioShock Infinite might have a multiplayer mode.

As spotted by Twitter user superannuation - who appears to have a knack for spotting things like these - Irrational posted this advert on Gamasutra.

The text reads:

"The BioShock Infinite team bets big on everything we do - we strive to be careful about the problems we tackle, innovative in our approach, solid in our implementation, and we polish the heck out of everything we do. Networking is no exception.

"Right now we're looking for an talented and experience individual to help us with the networking aspects of BioShock Infinite. This position will require a combination of initiative, leadership, design, coding, and daily problem solving on multiple target platforms.

"If you have the skills and passion for world-class network-connected experiences like BioShock then why not come join a team that has the track record, the autonomy, and the time to do it right?"

The job responsibilities section also asks for someone who can deliver "A robust, scalable, and responsive client-side networking support on the PC, PS3, and Xbox 360 platforms."

Yesterday Ken Levine announced that BioShock Infinite will miss its October release date. It's now slated for February 26, 2013.

Does this mean BioShock Infinite has a multiplayer mode? It's hard to see what else this could mean, given that the ad makes specific reference to gameplay needs.

In the past Levine has been fairly dismissive of the notion of multiplayer BioShock; indeed, he's rarely come across as a big fan of multiplayer gaming in general. Has he changed his mind? And if so, why?

(And yes, before anyone jumps in, a big sack of cash was probably involved.)