Bioshock 1 & 2 Research Camera

The research camera looks just like one you’d see topside. According to this magazine article I scrounged up, it can also ‘analyze genetic information, parse biological structures,’ and lots of other five-dollar words.


Bioshock and Bioshock 2 have a Research Camera in their gameplay. The game camera is an item obtainable by the player along the game, that allows one to take pictures of enemies in order to “research them” and gain research rewards. Photographs and the camera itself appear to be a mix of large format photography and Polaroid instant printing with the ability to gather also genetic and biological information, in line with the dystopian setting of the game. The pictures are evaluated and given a grade from A to C. In Bioshock 2 the Research camera also has video capabilities.


The Research Camera is a usable item that appears in BioShock, BioShock 2, and BioShock 2 Multiplayer. Unlike the weapons in the games, it does no direct damage to enemies, but it allows the player to gain research rewards.

source: Bioshock wiki,


The Research Camera in Bioshock


The Research Camera in Bioshock 2







Screen Shot 2015-12-22 at 5.20.51 PM

More information regarding the properties of the Reasearch Camera in Bioshock:


  • Taking a photograph will automatically pause the game when the photo is taken. […]
  • Film is cheap and easy to purchase, so unless the player is strapped for cash and low on Film (under 20 is considered low), it is always recommended to take as many photos as possible, especially on the harder difficulty settings.
  • The greater the quality of the photo, the higher the score. The quality is determined by a number of factors: How centered the camera is on the enemy, how close the enemy is to the player, whether said enemy is in combat or not (if they are in combat, the player gets an “Action Shot” bonus), whether the enemy is dead, and whether there are multiple enemies in the frame or not (“Multiple Subjects” bonus). If the subject has already been photographed, the score gets halved. If the subject is friendly (such as hacked machinery or hypnotized Big Daddies), fully researched, too far out of frame, or if the score is too low, the photo is not taken.
  • Photographer’s Eye and Photographer’s Eye 2 can be stacked, giving a total 25% bonus to photography scores, which means that the photographs taken will have higher scores and a greater number of photographs can be taken of the same subject (since photos that previously had too low a score to be taken now have been boosted to an acceptable score.)
  • If the player kills an enemy before photographing them, don’t forget to take a picture of their dead body. This will get a C-grade photo, but as the body count increases as it’s sure to do, taking photos of dead enemies can get one to the next level of research, without the associated danger that taking photos of live enemies carries.
  • […]

source: Bioshock wiki,