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If both Bioshock games were somehow combined, the protagonist would be caught between two very extreme ideologies. The use of light in both realms helps drive home each one’s message.

Rapture is the first world we are introduced to. It is a society built for the reign of man, a place where nothing can inhibit his grasp. All light sources are man made, and the evil hides in the darkness. All is done in the name of science, progress and economic “freedom.” Everything is fabricated. We learn later that even the protagonist’s desires and needs are the invention of men. Rapture is a world designed to be absent of God, cloaked in darkness, manufacturing it’s own dismal light.

Columbia on the other hand, is a much different place. It is a society fueled by the “divine” interpretations of a prophet. Columbia is an ultra-conservative society, searching for purity through faith. In this elevated city, almost all light sources come from the sun. A blinding, overbearing light replaces the darkness of Rapture. The evil doesn’t hide in the shadows, but behind the “divine” will of God. The Character’s arc involves a spiritual, cosmic journey and the forces of nature/divine providence play a huge role. God also plays a huge role in the world and narrative of Columbia and His greatest light source, the sun, does as well.

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