|Died||1960 (choice only)|
|Place of Death||Fort Frolic (choice only) |
Rapture (choice only)
|Combat Type||Houdini Splicer|
|Appears in||BioShock |
Burial at Sea -
|Voice Actor||T. Ryder Smith|
|Health||2500 (Fort Frolic) 1750 (Olympus Heights)|
|Location||Fort Frolic or Olympus Heights (will only attack if provoked)|
- "Cohen's an artist, says some. He's a Section Eight, says I. I've seen all kinds of cutthroats, freaks, and hard cases in my life, but Cohen, he's a real lunatic, a dyed-in-the-wool psychopath..."
Sander Cohen is a poet, composer, sculptor, and playwright ruling over Fort Frolic. Following the descent of Rapture into chaos, he went mad and became sadistically impassive to the deaths and suffering of others. The Splicers within his dominion are subject entirely to his whims, whether in life or death. All around Fort Frolic can be seen examples of his "art"; plaster figures of people who are, in fact, horrifically murdered Splicers and other unfortunates coated in plaster.
Sander Cohen was an artist who lived in New York. Although little is known of his life pre-Rapture, some of the scant information we have tells us that he eventually became colleagues with an Elgar Vankin and Mimi Tabor. It is implied that he converted them to the Ryanist philosophy since they began speaking of a coming utopia with an almost religious fervor. It could also be assumed that Cohen's talent as an artist was looked on as dubious at best, given his frequent run-ins with the "doubters" and Lee Wilson Seward's commentary that he was a "fraud".
Before Rapture descended into chaos, Cohen was an important figure in the artistic community of the city. He ran Fort Frolic and owned several galleries of art throughout the city. He also produced several albums, the latest of which was the very heavily advertised Why Even Ask?, as well as theatrical shows, one of which was named Patrick and Moira. As one of Andrew Ryan's most trusted supporters, Cohen was granted the honor of writing the Rapture anthem, "Rise, Rapture, Rise", and he consulted on the building of Ryan Amusements. Cohen was also interested in the art movement of Abstract Expressionism and participated in Sofia Lamb's celebration of "unconscious art" in Dionysus Park.
As a result of his closeness to Ryan, Cohen became a notable enemy of another singer/actress, Anna Culpepper, who called him "Ryan's songbird". Cohen allegedly used his contacts with Ryan, to "Put the bump" on her, as said by Security Chief Sullivan, who had to do the dirty work. With this competition gone, Cohen experienced a rare era of extravagance before the Rapture Civil War forced him to close Fort Frolic.
Before Jack arrived in 1960, Cohen apparently had five disciples, although only four were encountered and mentioned in the game. These were Silas Cobb, Martin Finnegan, Hector Rodriguez, and Kyle Fitzpatrick. Cohen's fifth known disciple was Elizabeth, who prior to the events of Burial at Sea spent three months undercover as his "Songbird" in order to gain information on his human trafficking schemes.
While it is never explicitly stated, it is hinted that Cohen may have had affairs with one or more of them (with the obvious exclusion of Miss Comstock, given her gender as well as the fact that she despised of him.) Silas refers to Cohen "paying his rent," Martin calls Jack/Cohen an "old fruit" (a pejorative term for homosexual), and Hector utters the ambiguous phrase "the things that man had me do..." All of them either betrayed or displeased Cohen at some point. As with the Medical Pavilion's Dr. J.S. Steinman, Cohen went insane, driven so partly by Plasmids and out of frustration for the lack of appreciation for his work after the Civil War. An audio diary reveals that he even regretted his decision to move to Rapture for this reason.
- Cohen's Scherzo (piano sonata)
- Cohen's Quadtych (mixed media sculpture)
- Bedtime Surprise
- The Black Dream (film)
- The March Hare (film)
- Regarderent et Furent Observes (film)
- Happy Chappy (musical)
- Higher Standards (musical)
- Patrick and Moira (musical)
- Why Even Ask? (record)
- Miasma (painting)
- You Belong To Me (record)
- Last Dance (painting)
- Main article: BioShock
When Jack arrives in Fort Frolic, Cohen cuts off his radio contact with Ryan and Atlas, stranding him on the level by causing the Bathysphere to submerge. Cohen then toys with Jack, inviting him to Fleet Hall to see a performance. This turns out to be the final performance of Kyle Fitzpatrick, who is plastered to a piano rigged with explosives. After the piano explodes, killing Fitzpatrick, Cohen requires Jack to take his photo and place it in his "Quadtych," a masterpiece that he says people will remember him by when he is gone. Cohen then sends Jack to Poseidon Plaza, promising to let Jack take the Bathysphere to Ryan only after Jack has killed and photographed his remaining three disciples, placing each photo in his Quadtych.
Once the third photo is placed in the Quadtych, Cohen has a paranoid moment, calling Jack a "doubter" and sends some Splicers to kill him (with the lights dimmed, a spotlight on Jack with "Waltz of the Flowers" from The Nutcracker by Tchaikovsky playing), but Jack fights them off long enough for Cohen to calm down.
After the player completes the Quadtych, Cohen finally reveals himself, amongst a host of spotlights and confetti, descending the staircase in the Atrium of Fort Frolic to congratulate Jack on his work. Cohen then rewards Jack by opening one of the glass cases near the stage. If the player chooses to attack Cohen the latter fights like a Houdini Splicer, teleporting around the area and throwing fireballs at the player.
If the player chooses not to kill Cohen at Fort Frolic then Jack will encounter him later in his apartment at Mercury Suites. There, Cohen welcomes him into his home saying "Come into the light, little moth, come in." Jack enters and sees two Houdini Splicers dancing to the music of a precariously balanced phonograph. If the player disrupts the dancers and kills them, then Cohen will descend from his room upstairs and attack. However, if the player leaves the dancers alone then it is entirely possible for Cohen to survive the events of BioShock.
The Victims are the same in the PC , PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 version.
- Victim 1: Kyle Fitzpatrick, on the stage of Fleet Hall. Reward: Crossbow. Steel-Tip Bolts can be bought from the Ammo Bandito in the Cocktail Lounge (across from Marquis D'Epoque Tobacco), as well as at 3 vending machines in Poseidon Plaza. Incendiary Bolts can be bought at 5 machines in Fort Frolic.
- Victim 2: Martin Finnegan, in the Frozen Tunnel. Reward: 10 Antipersonnel Auto Rounds, $20, 3 First Aid Kits. Bonus: Frozen Field tonic on Finnegan.
- Victim 3: Silas Cobb, in Rapture Records. Reward: 5 Electric Buck, $20, 20 Electric Gel. After the player posts Cobb's picture, but before they get their reward, Sander orders around 20 Splicers to attack the player. They are comparatively easy to kill, and have a bit more loot than usual (First Aid Kits, Frag Grenades, Buck, etc.).
- Victim 4: Hector Rodriguez, in Eve's Garden. Reward: Cohen opens a locked display case containing Medical Expert 2 tonic. Bonus: Cohen's office is now open and contains Electric Flesh, 2 Antipersonnel Pistol Rounds, 3 Armor-Piercing Pistol Rounds, 1 EVE Hypo, and 10 Film.
The player can kill Cohen in Fort Frolic at this point, but if they do, they won't get access to his Power to the People machine in Olympus Heights.
- Victim 5: Sander Cohen, in the Mercury Suites of Olympus Heights. Loot: $87, 36 Antipersonnel Auto Rounds, Sander Cohen's Muse Key. There is also a Power to the People machine and a fair amount of ammo and two First-Aid Kits up in his room.
- Victim 6: Sander Cohen - again - after burning his Quadtych in Fort Frolic. Loot: 5 Trap Bolts, 8 Film, Sander Cohen's Muse Key. (NOTE: See the Bugs/Glitches section below.)
- Muse Box reward: $100, 8 Incendiary Bolts, and 3 Spider Splicer Organs in Cohen's Muse Box (back in Fort Frolic).
Achievements/Trophies Related to CohenEdit
Both Xbox 360 and PS3 SpecificEdit
- Where the player chooses to kill Cohen affects which achievements/trophies one can obtain. If the player lets Cohen live in Fort Frolic, they will be able to gain access to a secret area in his living quarters in Olympus Heights later in the game. Entering the second floor of his apartment will give the player an achievement/trophy and an otherwise unattainable Power to the People vending machine.
- To gain access, simply disrupt the two dancing Houdini Splicers in his apartment either by attacking them, knocking over their record player, or playing the piano. Cohen will then come down to kill the player. Obtain the second achievement/trophy by taking a photo of his corpse.
- An easy way to kill Cohen is to place a number of Proximity Mines at the doorway to the upstairs level of Cohen's apartment. Then, kill the dancers from a distance and wait for Cohen to come down. If done correctly, he will walk right into the Mines and kill himself instantly.
- If the player wants to kill Cohen right away, one may attack him in Fort Frolic. He is relatively strong and uses a similar attack pattern to a Houdini Splicer except with more health, and a much larger teleportation range. When he is dead, search his body to find some EVE Hypos and a key, which will grant one access to the second glass case containing the muse box, for some money and items.
- To receive both achievements/trophies quickly, simply save in Fort Frolic after Cohen has revealed himself, but before one attacks him. The player may then initiate a fight. Once he is dead, take his photo to unlock the achievement/trophy and then reload one's save to before having attacked him. Then allow him to live, and leave the level without attacking him. Or, simply wait till you get to him at Olympus Heights, kill him there, take the picture of him dead, and then go to the Power to the People Machine.
Killing Cohen in Fort Frolic is pointless, because there are no special achievements in the PC version and the treasure inside the muse box is nothing noteworthy. However, if the player does not attack Cohen in Fort Frolic, they will be able to gain access to a secret area in his living quarters later on in the game in Olympus Heights which in turn will give them access to an otherwise unattainable Power to the People vending machine. To gain entry to the second floor of Cohen's apartment, simply disrupt the two dancing Houdini Splicers in his apartment, Cohen will then come down to kill the player.
If one waits to kill Sander in his apartment in Olympus Heights, the player may still salvage the key to his Muse Box at Fort Frolic. Simply return to Fort Frolic via bathysphere to claim the treasure.
The following are phrases that Sander Cohen says in BioShock. The name of the source audio file is listed when known.
When the Quadtych Is DamagedEdit
- "Watch yourself you clumsy sow! That's my work!"
- "This isn't right!"
Attacking in GeneralEdit
- "Don't look at me!"
- "I'm Sander Fucking Cohen!"
- "No, no, no!"
- "Look at me, boy!"
- "Smile! Smile!"
If the Player RunsEdit
- "Come back! Please come back!"
- "Fly little moth! Fly!"
- "It turns its tail! Turns its tail!"
- Main article: BioShock 2
Although Cohen is never seen in BioShock 2, he is still a well known person in Rapture and is mentioned by many Splicers, especially the Brutes. Signs of him are present in Dionysus Park where his exhibit of art, "Cohen's Collection", is still present. If the player chooses to gather ADAM from corpses in his art gallery Cohen's Scherzo will play throughout. At two locations the player may hear echoing laughter at the beginning or end of this song. His portrait is seen in various places around the city, and he is mentioned in an audio diary that was removed from the game.
BioShock 2 MultiplayerEdit
- Main article: BioShock 2 Multiplayer
Cohen is mentioned in several loading screen quotes in BioShock 2 Multiplayer, mostly relating to his having to close Fort Frolic.
While in Rapture Elizabeth spent two months as Cohen's disciple so she could learn more about his trafficking ring and his connection to Sally. While with him he called her his 'New Songbird' and together they released a record called You Belong To Me.
- Main article: Burial at Sea - Episode 1
Sander Cohen makes a full appearance as an important figure in Rapture's still active artist scene. He also reveals through audio diaries that he was responsible for trafficking young girls to be turned into Little Sisters and even sold them to those who could pay a high price, which helped to fund his lavish lifestyle. Booker DeWitt and Elizabeth infiltrate his private club in order to find out information regarding Sally.
He is not encountered in Episode 2, but a short film by him is found in the Manta Ray Lounge, called Regarderent et Furent Observes. When played, a distorted voice asks the viewer, "Why do you stand there? When someone is right...BEHIND YOU." Upon turning around, Elizabeth is startled by a plaster statue of a Splicer that has appeared out of nowhere.
Concept Art and Promotional ImagesEdit
- Sometimes, when killing Cohen in his apartment, he may randomly fall through the small stairs by the entrance to his apartment, making him impossible to reach.
- If one chooses to wait to kill Sander Cohen in Olympus Heights, the player may return to Fort Frolic after killing him, attack the Quadtych (the photos), and he will reappear in a rage.
- If the player uses Telekinesis to take Cohen's mask off while he is walking down the stairs, he will take another one off when he reaches the second set of steps.
Behind the ScenesEdit
- Sander Cohen's art style is heavily based on the Contemporary art movement which started in the 1910s but did not grow into notoriety until the late 1940s to the 1970s.
- Sander Cohen and Andrew Ryan are the only characters in BioShock with their own unique and specific character models rather than a reused and slightly tweaked Splicer model.
- Cohen is the only Splicer to sport a gold/bronze rabbit mask rather than the common white/gray ones. (prior to Burial at Sea - Episode 1)
- Sander Cohen's character was inspired by "the man who owned Broadway" George M. Cohan, an American entertainer, playwright, composer, lyricist, actor, singer, dancer and producer in the 1900-1920s.
- Although Cohen's multiple talent inspiration was that of George M. Cohan, the character was hybrid with notable attributes of flamboyant artist Salvador Dalí, who although had his most well-known work in 1931 through the 50's, would obsessively continue to create and experiment into other mediums until his death. Like the character, Dalí was also as eccentric about his own work, especially his distaste against his critics and other popular artists. Despite the latter of his pride, Dalí did collaborate with other artists that praised him. Most notably in comparison, Dalí even styled an elaborately waxed mustache.
- As seen in the Development Walkthrough video of BioShock, Hunting The Big Daddy, Sander Cohen's appearance in the Why Even Ask poster was drawn with more darker shading and detail, making him appear much older and more like Salvador Dalí. This was altered later to a yellow-tinted version of his Audio Diary portrait.
- In Eve's Garden, as Jack walks to the bedroom, the door is closed and Jasmine Jolene's ghost can be heard inside. Through the crack at the bottom of the door, an eerie shadow is cast in the red light. That shadow is made by two Sander Cohen's using the ghost pole dancer animation. The animation plays twice, followed by the disappearance of the Cohen's. This can be seen by using console commands to disable clipping (on the PC or Mac).
- Oddly enough, if the player somehow manages to get a Splicer to attack Cohen's "masterpiece" (such as using the Target Dummy Plasmid), Cohen will attack the player, rather than the Splicer that disturbed his work.
- If the player puts a Target Dummy on or near Sander Cohen, and manages to get a Splicer to attack him, Cohen will ignore all damage and continue to admire his art.
- Cohen is the only enemy that will attack the player if hit with Security Bullseye.
- It has been officially confirmed by the developers that Sander Cohen is homosexual. This has been hinted at on numerous occasions in BioShock and even BioShock 2, where the closeted Brute Splicers revere him as a role model (although, ironically, they are unaware of his orientation). The Audio Diaries left by his disciples also suggest that he was romantically linked with each one before they turned against him.
- If one looks up at the theater seats shortly after Sander Cohen kills Kyle Fitzpatrick, the player will see the Gene Tonic Alarm Expert. If the player goes to the seats and jumps over, Sander will comment "What an outstanding display of athleticism." This action will also spawn a few Houdini Splicers. Cohen will comment under any occasion, even if the player has already killed him.
- If the player shoots Kyle Fitzpatrick before Cohen has the chance, the piano will explode as usual, but Cohen will say "Oh, that was quicker than I hoped..."
- Sander Cohen was planned at one point to return in BioShock 2 as a "20-foot-tall Freudian monster bunny".
- According to Ken Levine, Bill Gardner composed the Kinetoscope videos for The Black Dream and The March Hare for Burial at Sea - Episode 1 .
- If the player attacks Sander Cohen in Fort Frolic, and then is killed, they will re-spawn in the Vita-Chamber, and if they then return to the masterpiece, Cohen will be standing there admiring it, unaware of the player unless they get too close.
- It can be noticed that in Bioshock, Sander Cohen's eyes are a bright green, whereas in Burial At Sea - Episode 1, his eyes are a dark hazel colour. This may be to do with the side effects of using ADAM recycled from corpses, which would have altered his DNA and therefore changed his physical traits. Or it could simply be due to his character's redesign for the DLC.
- ↑ Audio Diary: Ryan Amusements
- ↑ BioShock 2 Multiplayer Loading Screen Quotes, "CURTAINS FOR COHEN?... Fort Frolic Closed to Citizens—Forlorn Visionary Promises Final Frolic..."
- ↑ The Nutcracker, by Tchaikovsky, on Wikipedia
- ↑ BioShock Developer Walkthrough, GameTrailers.com
- ↑ interview with Ken Levine
- ↑ TidBits, Game Informer, #204, April 2010, p. 29
- ↑ Ken Levine on Twitter