The addition of the Hack Tool in BioShock 2 was a huge improvement on the first game, and made hacking better-paced and more interesting. However, one thing was missing from this otherwise perfect tool: upgrades. The problem with a weapon like this is that, once you've hacked everything in sight, it has little further use. To increase its usefulness, one must increase its abilities.
- Clip Size: One round.
- Ammo Carry Capacity: 9/4/4
Appearance-wise the Hack Tool looks like the Automatic Hack Tool from the first BioShock, except with a barrel instead of twin prongs. Otherwise, its mechanics remain the same. One thing, though: if you land the hacking needle on a blue area, instead of pausing the game to notify you of the bonus it gets indicated on a corner of the screen, similarly to a research bonus.
- Remote Hack Darts: Base ammo for the Hack Tool. No changes.
- Automatic Hack Darts: Rare ammo for the Hack Tool. Automatically give the hacked machine a blue-area bonus.
- Miniature Turret: Inventable ammo for the Hack Tool. As these would be obviously smaller than Subject Delta's, their size and general shape would change to reflect that. In addition, instead of being flung they're shot from the Hack Tool (they latch onto it with their legs). Also, hacking one of these and landing the needle on a blue area will increase their lifespan.
- Upgrade 1: Radio Transmitter. Hacking a machine with a Hack Dart, both Remote or Automatic, will also hack every other machine around them and grant them a blue-area bonus if one was attained on the first machine.
- Upgrade 2: Increased Frequency. Doubles the blue-area bonus when hacking machines. In addition, your Mini-Turrets have an increased lifespan as if under the effects of their hacking bonus.
- Upgrade 3: Battery Surge. Machines hacked by your Automatic Hack Darts and deployed Miniature Turrets have their speed and fire rate temporarily increased.
- Upgrade A: Emergency Protocol. Your Remote Hack Darts grant every machine around them a temporary damage bonus (even if they don't land on an unhacked machine). Gaining a blue-area bonus on a machine will grant one on every nearby hacked machine that doesn't have one yet.
- Upgrade B: Advanced Programming. Firing an Automatic Hack Dart at a machine (except a Security Bot or a Miniature Turret), even a hacked one, will permanently upgrade it, as noted by a golden glow emitted by its lights. The upgrades are as follows:
- Security Cameras turn into Sentries. Camera initiates an alarm immediately upon spotting an enemy, and will always call in fully-upgraded Security Bots.
- Machine Gun Turrets turn into Crowd Control Turrets. In addition to an increased rate of fire, each bullet pushes the enemy back slightly.
- RPG Turrets turn into Cannon Turrets. RPGs fired by the Turret move much faster, and home in much more precisely on enemies.
- Flamethrower Turrets turn into Napalm Turrets. Turret fires napalm which sticks to the scenery for several seconds, and will strategically form walls of the stuff when attacked.
- Crossbow Turrets turn into Shock Turrets. Turret's precision is increased and each shot electrifies the target, along with any other enemy close to them.
- Quake Turrets turn into Seismic Turrets. Turret heals continuously over time and doubles the force of its shockwaves.
- Hive Turrets turn into Swarm Turrets. Turret can deploy up to four mini-Bots, up from two, and a couple of them will always stand guard by the Turret even when not attacked.
- Upgrade C: Custom Turrets. Deployed Miniature Turrets can now target two enemies at once. In addition, they have more health and they deal more damage per shot. Their cosmetic appearance changes to reflect this.
And that's it for the Hack Tool, the penultimate weapon in my singleplayer arsenal. What are your thoughts?