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For the multiplayer level, see Arcadia (BioShock 2 Multiplayer).
Arcadia Entrance Sign
"Today Arcadia was closed off to all but paying customers. The man hires me to build a forest at the bottom of the ocean, and then turns a walk in the woods into a luxury."
Julie Langford[src]

Arcadia is the fifth area Jack ventures to in BioShock. Here, the player will do battle with new and disturbing Houdini Splicers, and fight for survival within its simulated natural spaces.


Arcadia is the living, breathing heart of Rapture. Its lush forests and abundant plant life served to generate life-sustaining oxygen the city needed.[1] It was a tranquil haven for those seeking a respite from the daily rigors of city life, to relax in solitude among the many trees and grassy hills. Vacationers seeking something more relaxing than the flashing lights of Fort Frolic could find peace and serenity in the lovely Waterfall Grotto, Tea Garden, and other havens beneath the canopy of trees.

Arcadia was created by botanical scientists on Ryan's payroll, most notably Julie Langford. Langford helped create Arcadia and its agricultural research facility, and later used ADAM to grow plants and trees. For a time, Arcadia was a free park for the citizens of Rapture, but Andrew Ryan closed Arcadia to all but paying customers, as he believed the service it provided warranted payment.[2]

During the Civil War, a cult known as Saturnine appeared in Arcadia. The cult members worshiped nature and indulged in splicing and drinking as part of their "rituals". Ryan vowed to put a stop to the Saturnine, whom he saw as an organised religion, as their activities endangered citizens and disrupted the work of Arcadia's scientists. The park experienced a number of lock downs as the violence in the city became worse, and was eventually closed to the public altogether. However Langford continued to return to her lab in the park to continue work on the Lazarus Vector.


Main article: BioShock

Promotional image of a lone Big Daddy in Arcadia.

Tea GardenEdit

The Tea Garden was one of the calmest places in Rapture. Nothing got the betties in the mood better than a night-time stroll in the Arcadia Tea Garden. Rolling hills, admirable waterfalls, a calm stream, dim light, and a perfect atmosphere were all part of the Garden's allure. After the fall of Rapture, the Tea Garden's customers were kept away by the growing civil strife.

Tree FarmEdit

The Tree Farm was a place where citizens could see trees and farm plants growing under the ocean. Situated next the entrance gates to Arcadia, it was nigh impossible to miss. By the end of the Civil War, the area was in disuse and became overgrown, making it nearly inaccessible with a growth of vines keeping the doors shut.

Arcadia GlensEdit

Arcadia Glens was the main hub of Arcadia. From the Glens, visitors could reach the Waterfall Grotto, the Rolling Hills, the Tea Garden and the Tree Farm. It consists of a long concourse running through Arcadia, connecting with lower paths where water was circulated through the various areas.

Waterfall GrottoEdit

The Waterfall Grotto is one of the more impressive areas in Arcadia. Like the rest of Arcadia, it has fallen into disorder. Its former glory is barely visible beneath the plant growth, rubble, flood-water, and shadows. The Rosa Gallica is one of the rare plants that bloomed there.

Rolling HillsEdit

The Rolling Hills was another place citizens of Rapture could relax and enjoy the serenity of the verdant park. As the name suggests, the Rolling Hills' features a smooth hilly landscape. With its abundance of trees and foliage, it is one of the best places to have a walk in the "woods" of Rapture.

Rapture Metro StationEdit


Arcadia's mass transit connection.

The entrance to Arcadia's metro station is adorned by two decorated fountains on both sides of a small chamber. Like many Bathysphere stations, the walls are decorated with the symbols of The Great Chain, but the station is also home to a large abundance of plants and features vines growing on its walls.

Thanks to the closure of Arcadia to the public during the war Arcadia's Rapture Metro station is in almost near perfect condition. A jukebox provided entertainment while citizens waited for the next available Bathysphere. A present on a bench by the entrance never made it to who it was intended for.

Research LaboratoriesEdit

Central Misting Control

Arcadia's Central Misting Control Panel.

The Research Center, supervised by Julie Langford, was an important place for botanical research in Rapture. Despite lockdown of the bathyspheres and growing dangers in Rapture, Langford continued to conduct her research here under contract with Ryan Industries. She had high security systems installed to keep Splicers out, and to ward off the members of the Saturnine cult. The Central Misting Control for all areas of the district, including the Farmer's Market, was situated in Langford's Office, which overlooks the Rolling Hills.



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Bot Shutdown
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Physical Tonic
Combat Tonic

New DiscoveriesEdit

Little Sisters in this Level

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Single Use EventsEdit

New WeaponryEdit

New Plasmids and Tonics (Found)Edit

New Plasmids and Tonics (Available at a Gatherer's Garden)Edit

New EnemiesEdit

Coded Doors/SafesEdit

  • Langford's Office, 9457

Audio DiariesEdit

For Radio Messages in Arcadia, see Radio Messages: Arcadia - Farmer's Market.
  1. Bill McDonagh - Seeing Ghosts
  2. Dieter Sonnekalb - Big Night Out
  3. Brigid Tenenbaum - Mass Producing ADAM
  4. Julie Langford - Arcadia Closed
  5. Julie Langford - The Saturnine
  6. Mariska Lutz - Shouldn't Have Come
  7. Andrew Ryan - The Market is Patient
  8. Julie Langford - Early Tests Promising
  9. Andrew Ryan - Offer a Better Product
  10. Diane McClintock - Heroes and Criminals
  11. Julie Langford - What Won't They Steal
  12. Julie Langford - Teaching an Old Hound
  13. Julie Langford - Lazarus Vector Formula
  14. Julie Langford - The Lazarus Vector
  15. Julie Langford - Arcadia and Oxygen
  16. Brigid Tenenbaum - Maternal Instinct
  17. Andrew Ryan - The Great Chain


Minerva's DenEdit

Main article: Minerva's Den

Among other locations in Rapture, posters can be found, advertising Arcadia in certain locations through out Minerva's Den. Such as "The BEAUTY of ARCADIA" poster lying on the floor in the Executive Wing.

Burial at SeaEdit

Main article: Burial at Sea
DLCB WhiteOats poster

A poster for white oats.

Arcadia is referenced in both of BioShock Infinite's story-driven downloadable contents, Burial at Sea - Episode 1 and Episode 2. It is mentioned in a reused public address announcement heard throughout the levels and can be seen on several consumables, showing products from cereals to vegetables were grown there. Booker DeWitt implies in Episode 1, that Arcadia had secluded cabins.[3] Recreational lodgings such as these would further Arcadia's reputation as a scenic vacation destination.


Signs and AdvertisementsEdit

In-Game ImagesEdit

Concept ArtEdit

Behind the ScenesEdit

  • The level name "Arcadia" was inspired by the Latin phrase "Et in Arcadia ego", which translates to "Even in Arcadia I exist" spoken by Death personified.[4] The Utopian vision, Arcadia, is associated with bountiful natural splendor and harmony,[5] so the phrase is a reminder that even in paradise things die, which ironically could be a reference to Rapture itself. Early in development for the level Andrew Ryan was intended to say this phrase just before releasing the poison into the level. The line was later cut, but the name of the level remained.[6]
  • When the level Arcadia was made, the artists developing it utilized code from a previously removed feature of the game. This feature was originally intended to change lighting, fog, etc. in relation to the pressure of the area the player was in. The artists used the remaining code for the events such as the dying and revival of the trees.[7]


  1. Julie Langford's Audio Diary: Arcadia and Oxygen
  2. Julie Langford's Audio Diary: Arcadia Closed
  3. Based on the following exchange on Market Street in Burial at Sea - Episode 1:
    Elizabeth: "What happened to these children? What are they?"
    Booker: "Where've you been, a cabin in Arcadia? Little Sisters. ADAM factories."
    Elizabeth: "It's grotesque."
  4. Et in Arcadia ego on Wikipedia
  5. Arcadia on Wikipedia
  6. Arcadia Demade, designer commentary by BioShock developer Jean-Paul LeBreton on his blog,
  7. Five Cut Features article on

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