The central cast of BioShock Infinite.
Booker and Elizabeth have their own pages under Protagonists section.
Warning! Due to the nature of the game, there are many, many spoilers on this page, many of which are unmarked.
"Father" Zachary Hale Comstock
The leader of the Founders, and an embodiment of their ultra-nationalist, racist, elitist, xenophobic, and hyper-religious beliefs. Comstock is known as "The Prophet", and has turned Columbia and its people into a living shrine to himself. He is obsessed with the concept of cleansing the soul to achieve rebirth, and wishes for Elizabeth to follow in his footsteps.
- Abusive Parent: He had his daughter Elizabeth locked up in a tower for her entire life, and later brutally tortured by being stabbed with wires and 'drained' to power one of his doomsday machines. It's shown that this treatment eventually leads her to cross the Despair Event Horizon and become another version of him. She didn't even know he was her father! ... Though technically, he's not.
- Aesop Amnesia: Despite it being guilt over his atrocities at Wounded Knee that initially drove him to the baptism, afterwards, he started treating them as glorious achievements, played up his involvement and referring to himself as the "Hero of Wounded Knee".
- The Alcoholic: In both Comstock's quarters and the adjacent stateroom on the Hand of the Prophet, there is a fairly considerable amount of booze scattered around. Not terribly surprising, as while both he and Booker both spiraled into addiction after Wounded Knee, Booker eventually squared with his past. Comstock, who didn't, became a religious fanatic in order to justify his actions. Booker's reappearance might have reminded him, at least subconsciously, that he's a fraud and a murderer, and pushed him back Off the Wagon.
- Alternate Self:
- He seems to be this universe's version of Andrew Ryan, with an ideology similar to Sofia Lamb's. The big twist is that he's really this for Booker DeWitt.
- In Burial at Sea, it turns out the player character isn't an alternate version of Booker, but rather an alternate version of Comstock, who had the Luteces send him to Rapture to forget the awful things he had done.
- Alternate Universe Reed Richards Is Awesome: He spearheaded the campaign that led to the creation of Columbia, a floating city, which is seven kinds of awesome. The fact he then turned it into a nightmarish, theocratic dictatorship is... somewhat less so. Compared to the alcoholic private eye living out of his office, there's no question who was more accomplished.
- Answers to the Name of God: Comstock's last gasps ("It is finished") are traditionally attributed to Jesus' crucifixion in the Book of John. The phrase is also used in the Book of Revelation after Jesuss second coming at the end of the Tribulation; fitting for a man who sees himself as a Messianic Archetype.
- By the end of the game, he is this to both Booker and Elizabeth, especially Elizabeth, who is willing to cross realities for the sake of ending Comstock for good. For all of Elizabeth's life, Comstock kept her imprisoned in a tower and used the monstrous Songbird as her guard, ultimately intending to groom her into becoming his successor and being fully willing to torture her into filling the role. Elizabeth's hate for Comstock becomes so intense that even a single iteration of him living is unacceptable to her, leading to the events of Burial at Sea.
- As far as Booker is concerned, Comstock hated him before they ever met, with Comstock demonising Booker as the evil "False Shepherd" and setting hordes of enemies upon him when Booker comes to Columbia. By the time Booker kills Comstock, he hates the man so much that he screams with uncharacteristic rage as he drowns Comstock. The revelations at the end of the game prove that Booker had more reasons to hate Comstock than even he knew; Comstock literally ripped Booker's only child from his arms, and the nature of the two men make their mutual self-loathing incredibly literal; they're both their own worst enemy.
- Archnemesis Dad: To Elizabeth, although he isn't really her father.
- Armchair Military: What drove the wedge between Comstock and his top general, Cornelius Slate. In the Prophet's ongoing biography he emerges, somehow, as a warrior god who foiled the Boxer Rebellion and won the day at Wounded Knee. Slate remembered it slightly differently... Comstock wanted to have his cake and eat it, too, insisting on a falsified service record to replace his old one — the one he redacted when Booker "died" and the Prophet was born. Slate was unaware of this.
- As the Good Book Says...: While he does not use many exact quotes, he does pepper his speech very frequently with allusions to The Bible. Most of the Voxophone memos of him the player can listen to sound like sermons, and given his position and the echo in the recording suggesting a very large enclosed space, they may very well be literally recordings of sermons he made. Voxophone recordings you find from one writer, who gets commissioned to write his biography, reveal that he only has enough material to fill about 30 of the 100 pages authorized to be his biography ("One hundred is enough...because I know how it ends."). The writer at one point just decides "screw it" and stuffs it full of scripture.
- Ax-Crazy: Truly, under his wise and forgiving act is a very unstable man.
- Becoming the Mask: Comstock works tirelessly to keep up his image as a religious leader. He boasts about Wounded Knee, even though Slate and his comrades knew him as DeWitt. He really was at Wounded Knee, but he would rather mark them as traitors than reveal his original identity as Booker. A Voxophone found in the Clash in the Clouds DLC has Rosalind say this of him explicitly.Rosalind: But at some point, the man became incapable of distinguishing his performance from his person.
- When he comes to Rapture and becomes Booker once more to escape the guilt of Elizabeth's death in Burial at Sea, he loses all traces of his "Comstock" persona, so that the ending once more comes as a shock.
- Believing Their Own Lies: Besides the above quote about distinguishing his performance from his person, it's telling that even after it's revealed that his prophetic abilities are mostly derived from the Luteces' machine, he refers to his visions as having come from an "Archangel".
- Big Bad: Undoubtedly — he's responsible for Columbia existing, and why it turned out the way it did.
- Beard of Evil: Cleverly, it keeps the player from noticing that his face is very similar to Booker's. It was way easier to tell in his previous incarnation, where he didn't have the beard and only sported slicked back hair.
- Boomerang Bigot: He has Sioux heritage and advocates for a White ethnostate. An voxaphone log reveals that his fellow soldiers at Wounded Knee were aware of this and were bigoted towards him because of it. He overcompensated by burning several Sioux families alive to win their respect. Furthermore, and due to his fundimental misunderstanding of what baptism is, once he assumed the identity of Comstock, he believed that he was incapable of sin. Therefore, all of his previous actions must have been good. This allowed to rationalize his own racist war crimes and the crimes of his allies as acts of God, which and led to him adopting the view that Whites are superior to all other races. Since, if all races were equal then he committed an atrocity, but because he is incapable of sin then they can't be and must be subhuman. Yikes
- Cast as a Mask: Doesn't share Booker's voice actor, despite being the same person as him. Flipped on its head in Burial at Sea - still being (seemingly) younger and unaware of his past, he's voiced by Troy Baker again.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Just ask the Luteces; he had both of them killed because they knew the truth about Elizabeth. And killed his wife when she threatened to go public with that same truth.
- Contrasting Sequel Antagonist: To Andrew Ryan. Ryan created his own hidden Utopia because he lost faith in America and wanted to start something new, had zero market regulation and allowed his people to do whatever they wanted, and was a firm atheist with intense hatred of a central governmental body. Comstock took control of Columbia because he felt he could have better job safeguarding American values than the actual country, tightly controls the market and day-to-day life in his city, and is a Christian with a near-totalitarian hold on Columbia. In keeping with the Franchise's message against Extremism though, they both have telling similarities. They're both Hypocrites who betray their own ideals to pursue their goals, both use their world-views to justify the exploitation and suffering of others, and both ultimately have their Utopias crumble all around them.
- Crusading Widower: Except he killed his wife himself.
- Cult of Personality: The entire city of Columbia is essentially a cult revolving around Comstock and his twisted bastardization of Christianity. It gets even more exaggerated in the Bad Future where dissenters are sealed in masks bearing his likeness and the likeness other Founding Fathers.
- Cutscene Boss: Booker wrenches him away from Elizabeth, strangles him, hits his head against the baptismal font, and then drowns him in the water, all the while in a state of abject and frothing rage.
- Dark Lord on Life Support: It's revealed fairly early on that Comstock has been diagnosed with cancer, and does not expect to live to see Columbia conquer "the Sodom Below" — hence the reason why he needs Elizabeth to take up his mantle. Later entries reveal that he is also sterile and prematurely aged, all three conditions being a side-effect of his overexposure to the Luteces' machine.
- Dark Messiah: By naming his political party the "Founders", Comstock established a clear connection between himself and the founding fathers. His chicanery was convincing enough for Congress to loan him the money for Columbia's construction. His ego spiraling out of control, Comstock decided that the U.S. didn't deserve him and anointed Columbia as the "true" America; hence the grandiose flag sporting a single star.
- Deader Than Dead: To prevent the bad future from occurring, it would require removing the possibility that it could ever occur, and thus require the death of Comstock at the very moment he is born. As Comstock is a new identity created by Booker accepting his baptism, eliminating Comstock requires that Booker must die at that very moment. The Stinger implies, though, that only Comstock was essentially excised from the possible Bookers.
- It is confirmed in Burial at Sea that Rapture's Comstock is the last one; due to Elizabeth's interference in 1893, Comstock changed his name back to DeWitt to pick up where he left off, drowning in alcohol and IOUs. He manages to give Elizabeth the slip, but she eventually traces him back to Rapture and murders him in Fontaine's toy store.
- Death by Irony: Comstock's beginning as a villain was a baptism, and he forced all newcomers to Columbia to be baptized as a sign of loyalty to him. Fittingly, Booker drowns him in a baptismal font.
- Dramatic Wind: Pretty much every statue of him in the game is carved to make his beard be blowing noticeably to his right.
- Dramatically Missing the Point: Baptism. Baptism is supposed to metaphorically make you into a new person, so the sins you have committed don't apply to you anymore. Comstock adopted a new identity after his baptism and came away believing that it had retroactively justified his sins into not sins, and therefore they were actually admirable deeds. He would go on to take his initial sins to horrifying lengths following this line of thinking.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones:
- Played With in regards to Lady Comstock. In his rise to power, Comstock genuinely loved Lady Comstock and she meant a whole bunch to him. But as he become more megalomaniacal and monstrous, Lady Comstock couldn't take it anymore and was about to tell the truth about Elizabeth. Comstock then subsequently murdered Lady Comstock in a fit of panic.
- His relationship with Elizabeth is a subversion. He claims that everything he does to and for her is for love, but it all falls flat. And then there's getting into details to what he does to her in the Bad Future...
- In Burial at Sea he does seem genuinely concerned for Sally, a little orphan he adopted. He tortured Suchong for fifteen hours to find her and objects to a plan to flush her out by potentially burning her. However, when she refuses to come with him, he shows a darker side.
- Evil Old Folks: The one time Booker and Elizabeth meet him face-to-face, he's quite polite and talks to Elizabeth like a kindly old grandfather. Subverted in that Comstock is actually pushing forty. His wizened appearance is the result of abusing dimensional travel.
- Evil Is Sterile: Literally. He kidnapped Anna because overexposure to the Lutece's machines rendering him incapable of producing an heir of his own.
- Evil Overlord: Of Columbia.
- Evil Twin: Of Booker — well, a twin in (almost) the same sense as Rosalind and Robert.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Whenever he addresses you using the city's speakers, his voice has this effect on top of Voice of the Legion.
- Fallen Hero: Booker DeWitt with a baptism who no longer accepted the responsibility of his actions while basically considering himself God's most holy prophet.
- False Prophet: He passes himself as a prophet, using the Lutece twins' research about using tears in the space-time to predict the future and create advanced technology from other universes.
- Faux Affably Evil: He behaves like a calm, loving and caring father-figure. In truth, he's an utterly ruthless megalomaniac with one hell of a god complex. He even says that forgiveness is the Lord's duty, and therefore, he doesn't have to forgive anyone, which means that he's free to kill anyone who has "wronged" him.
- Foreshadowing: Much of it at the start, beginning with pointing out the initials on Booker's hand to mark him as the "False Shepherd", even knowing about Booker's past along with his supposed "deal". It's because he is Booker and he knows everything about him, including that he would be coming to Columbia sooner or later to reclaim his daughter.
- Four Is Death: The Founders are major evangelists of the Big Three: Washington, Franklin, and Jefferson—all rather machofied, idealized versions that look and sound nothing like the originals. Comstock himself, or sometimes the angel Columbia, tops the pantheon.
- The Fundamentalist: Both religiously and nationalistically.Comstock: Go back to the Sodom from whence you came!
- A God Am I: Well, he at least claims himself to just be following the will of God, but he's not very humble in general past that...
- Gone Horribly Right: He considers his true "birth" to have been his Baptism after Wounded Knee. To wit, this is to say he wanted to be granted forgiveness from the things that he did previously. It was supposed to make him understand that he had done wrong and could become better for it, but instead he became even worse and was convinced that he could do no wrong.
- HeelFaith Turn: He claims that his discovery of faith saved his soul. In reality, it only provided him with the belief that he could do no wrong, which leads to a lot of suffering.
- Hitler's Time Travel Exemption Act: Whatever moves Booker makes against Comstock, Comstock will still remain alive in at least one of his "tears" in the universes; the Luteces have already tried to enlist Booker numerous times to end the cycle — 122 times, to be exact, judging by Robert Lutece's coin-flip tally. Oblivious Booker is content to go back in time and strangle Comstock in his crib if necessary. Elizabeth and her alternates gang up on Booker and drown him to prevent him from ever becoming the Prophet.
- In Burial at Sea, Elizabeth exposes "Booker" as yet another Comstock. This version killed the Elizabeth of his universe by mistake, undoing all of his plans and ruining his self-image as a changed man. As penance, he fled to Rapture and retook the name of "Booker DeWitt", which spared him from the erasure.
- Hypocrite: He gives Andrew Ryan and Sofia Lamb serious competition in not practicing what they preach.
- "The Lord forgives everything, but I'm just a prophet... so I don't have to."
- He parades himself around as a prophet chosen by God Himself yet he not only breaks several of the Ten Commandments with his various atrocities but, as Jesus is not so much as mentioned, likely since it would take attention away from him, along with the entire city of Columbia being one huge Cult of Personality around himself (i.e. Idolatry), his religious beliefs would be seen as extremely blasphemous by most Christians.
- Also the fact that he accepts a baptism and changes his name and identity to try to free himself from the guilt of what he did at Wounded Knee, but he takes credit FOR THE VERY SAME DEEDS.
- Like Booker, he is half-Sioux and not fully white. Not that it stops him from condemning interracial couples, demonizing minorities and literally bringing African Americans to Colombia by FORCE to work as servants.
- He has the gall to to use Bookers drinking problem to shame him early in the game yet, as evidenced by all of the liquor in his personal quarters, he has a huge drinking problem as well.
- In that same speech he also calls Booker a killer of women which is quite rich coming from him give how he not only killed countless innocent women and children at Wounded Knee but also murdered his own wife for being a liability.
- I Hate Past Me: Both Comstock and Booker despise each other. Whereas Booker grows to despise Comstock over the course of the game, Comstock has held Booker in hostility long before he arrives in Columbia. They're both the same person, with different reasons to hate their shared past. Besides him thinking "it's Never My Fault", and quickly Becoming the Mask, and any related tropes, it may be his defining trait- The entire game happens because he doesn't want to be Booker. What makes this worse is they're the same age. The Twin's machine only makes him look older as it slowly kills him.
- Improbable Age: Booker was born in 1874 and established Colombia in 1893 when he was 18-19. While it's possible to be a preacher and have a substantial following, the government simply wouldn't build a large autonomous warship and give someone, who couldn't even vote, control over it purely on faith.
- Ignored Epiphany: It's implied he started using his religious faith as a shield against his guilt, rather than being forced to deal with it like our Booker — leading him to conclude the Indian Wars were justified and that America is still being undermined by undesirables.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: How he meets his end at the drill of a Big Daddy in Burial at Sea.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: It's hinted that for all his dismissive comments about Booker, he's deeply envious of Booker's ability to come to terms with their past, as well as have a child that he cannot due to his sterility. Lampshaded by the Luteces in Burial At Sea, who imply that his decision to steal Elizabeth and try the same with Sally is simply transference for his self-loathing and desire to be someone else.
- There is one Voxaphone in which Comstock sounds angry. When he recounts how he was teased before the Massacre at Wounded Knee for having Sioux Ancestry. This led him to buring several Sioux families alive to win the approval of his fellow soldiers.
- Knight Templar: He sincerely believes in what he does as the will of a perfect and all-forgiving God, even knowing how harsh his actions often are.Comstock: Is it not cruel to banish one's children from a perfect garden? Is it not cruel to drown your flock under an ocean of water? Cruelty can be instructive, and what is Columbia but a schoolhouse of the Lord?
- Lack of Empathy: Comstock seems to be completely lost to human compassion.
- Large Ham: Though not always, he does occasionally chew the scenery, particularly in some of his Voxophone recordings and in the later half of the game.
- Laser-Guided Karma: In the Burial at Sea DLC, an alternate version of Comstock accidentally beheaded Anna during the jump between worlds. His overwhelming guilt led him to sentence himself to Rapture, where Anna did not exist and where he could again live as "Booker", with no memory of what he did. Unfortunately, this led him to end up losing his (adopted) daughter the exact same way as Booker Prime.
- Literal Metaphor: As the Big Bad to Booker's Player Character, Comstock is literally His Own Worst Enemy.
- Meaningful Name:
- Zachary is a shortened and Americanized pronunciation of the Hebrew name Zechariah, meaning "The Lord has remembered" in English. It is the name of two biblical figures: the priest Zechariah ben Jehoiada, and the prophet Zechariah.
- He shares his surname Comstock with a number of 19th century U.S. politicians and judges. One of the more noteworthy associations is with moral crusader Anthony Comstock, who, in his position as postal inspector and secretary of the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice, introduced stringent obscenity laws and prosecuted violators with such zeal (personally crediting himself with driving 15 artists/authors to suicide) that his name is synonymous with heavy-handed censorship laws.
- Hale is a name which is believed to have originated from either the Old English word halh, which refers to a nook or hollow where people may find shelter, or the Saxon term haelaeh, which refers to qualities of heroism such as courage or strength. In Modern English "hale" can also be a descriptor for someone who is strong and healthy in spite of their age (as in "hale and hearty") - this makes it a thoroughly Ironic Name: Comstock is a lot younger than his appearance suggests and extremely unhealthy due to terminal cancer, both caused by overexposure to the Lutece's machine.
- Messianic Archetype: Comstock wields this trope like a bludgeon in Columbia; half the population are convinced that he's a prophet, and that Elizabeth is his divinely ordained successor.
- Mirror Character: Of Daisy Fitzroy or Booker DeWitt. All brutally dedicated to achieving their goals, whatever lies they have to tell or means they have to resort to. There is a reason for that. This is extremely emphasized in the first Burial at Sea episode: When he's left without his city and his resources, he's so similar to Booker that it's hard to tell the difference but for a few key differences in perspective.
- Misery Builds Character:
- Mistaken for Cheating: Lady Comstock thought he was having an affair with Rosalind Lutece. He wasn't, of course, but in her defense that sounds far more plausible than "Lutece helped me buy this baby from an alternate universe version of myself."
- Moral Myopia: The way his religion works. It's all a giant coping mechanism to keep himself from feeling guilt for his past. Forgiveness in Christian traditions typically means "Go and Sin No More" — baptism means your sins have been washed away, the slate is clean, and you can start over as a way to be better than the person you used to be. Comstock's religion tells him "You cannot sin, no matter what you do, so do whatever you want".
- Narcissist: Columbia is less of a city and more of one huge cult of personality around him. In fact its implied that the games Jesus Taboo is the result of him not wanting another figure to distract from his spotlight.
- Never My Fault: Comstock has severe trouble facing his own guilt, to the point that this is his most defining trait. He only exists because he's a version of Booker that accepted baptism and created a new identity to bury his guilt over Wounded Knee. Driving the point home further, Burial at Sea features an alternate Comstock who accidentally killed Elizabeth when he tried to take her from her own world, and then had the Luteces move him to another world so that he could escape his guilt over that, too.Rosalind Lutece: Comstock was never one to own up to his errors, was he, brother?
Robert Lutece: Never comfortable with the choices he made...
Rosalind: Always seeking someone else's life to claim as his own...
- Ironically, this condemnation is given the one time he does owns up to his past and mistakes before Elizabeth teaches him This Is a Drill.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Twofold. First, by killing his wife and framing Fitzroy for it, Comstock ends up setting in motion the chain of events that led to the creation of the Vox Populi. Second, he had Jeremiah Fink killed the Lutece Twins in a lab accident to keep Elizabeth's origin a secret only to spread them across time and space, allowing them to rectify their mistake by bringing Booker to Columbia.
- Non-Action Big Bad: Despite his vast propaganda toward militarism, the most violent thing he does himself personally is grab Elizabeth's right arm and demand Booker tell her why she's missing digits from her pinky. After that, Booker smashes his head, strangles, and drowns him with ease. Of course, he's prematurely aged and terminally ill, so that's about all he could be expected to do.
- Omnicidal Maniac: He plans for Elizabeth to destroy human civilization on the surface world as his version of the final judgment.
- Orcus on His Throne: Comstock used the Lutece machine to become near omniscient, and initally used it to quell any threat to Colombia and more importantly his rule. However, he has barely done anything against the Vox Populi who have been waging an insurgancy since 1895.
- Pet the Dog: In Burial at Sea he is quite protective of Sally, a simple orphan he adopted. He fights through a small army of splicers to reach her and objects to Elizabeth's plan to try to force her into the open with extreme heat. How valid that is, and how much this redeems him, are subject to debate. He doesn't take it so well when Sally refuses to come with him, however.
- Permanent Elected Official: Maybe the best description of his position; Columbia is born in the image of the United States, but Comstock has absolute, unyielding authority within the city. He is king-like, although never referred to as such, and his devotees not only give him their allegiance but their worship.
- Phony Psychic: His directives supposedly all come from the Archangel Columbia, including his plans for a dynasty to take over before the cancer claims him. This is actually the standard playbook of a tyrant, but he rationalizes it through scripture. He's actually been using the Luteces' machine to peer into other realities, claiming credit for any wondrous discoveries he finds. This means that while his predictions are 100% correct, he's both lying about their source and filtering them through his pseudo-religious philosophy.
- Phony Veteran: Slate accuses him of being one. Subverted as he's ultimately an alternate version of Booker, who actually is a veteran.
- Politically Correct Villain: For a man of his time, he's extremely progressive about gender issues, employing women in his armed forces, grooming his daughter to take over after him, and listing "misogyny" as one of the sins of "the Sodow Below" that his followers should hate and fear. When it comes to other issues such as race... well, there he goes in the opposite direction.
- Politically Incorrect Villain: Via Deliberate Values Dissonance, which makes some of his positions seem monstrous to a modern audience, though merely "extreme" by the standards of his contemporaries.
- Also it's debatable how genuine his racism is. His identity as Comstock certainly is racist, but Booker doesn't appear to be, at least from his interactions with people of different races. Booker may have deliberately chosen this character trait for his new identity to feed Columbia's sense of isolation, superiority, and victimization, to better present himself as a savior and protector. When he started believing in what he was saying, however, his pretend racism may have shaded into the real thing.
- Psychological Projection: Most of the things he uses to shame Booker into going back to the Sodom below are things that he himself is guilty of. The fact that hes an alternate version of Booker is probably why.
- Redemption Rejection: In Burial at Sea Episode One, the playable Comstock after inadvertently killing Anna while trying to take her gave up his plans of building Columbia and burning the Sodom below and fled to Rapture where he could go back to being Booker and forget it all happened. In time, he adopted a young orphan named Sally and became violently protective of her, being willing to torture Suchong and fight through an army of splicers to rescue her after she was taken. Most notably, he objects strenuously to a plan that would hurt Sally for her own good, which was the main Comstock's entire philosophy for 'educating' Elizabeth. Nevertheless, Elizabeth and the Luteces view the entire sequence of events as him just trying to run away from his problems and arrange to have him brutally murdered even as he apologizes to Elizabeth. Fans are divided on how genuine his attempted redemption actually is, with opinions ranging from it was,note it wasn't and he deserved what happened to him, and it was but by that point he was already irredeemable.
- Retired Badass: He is known to be a successful military man back in the day, having participated in the battle of Wounded Knee and the Boxer rebellion. He is also a prematurely-aged version of Booker DeWitt, meaning that he could do anything that Booker can do if he had a younger body. Burial At Sea shows us just how well he can handle himself even in his withered condition.
- The Reveal: Comstock was at Wounded Knee and the Boxer Rebellion because he is Booker, a version who accepted baptism and a new name with it. He still didn't lead at Wounded Knee, mind you (he was just a corporal), making Slate's protests still somewhat valid. But that single choice—to baptize or not—is the heart of the game, as Comstock goes on to found Columbia, become sterile from peeking into Lutece Fields, and arrange for the purchasing of some other timeline's Booker's daughter because of Heir Club for Men reasons.
- Right-Wing Militia Fanatic: An early 20th century version of this and it may even be taken Up to Eleven since he believes America isn't American enough.
- Sanity Slippage: A constant among the various identities - his newfound nationalist zealotry apparently consumed his original self in the wake of his baptism, and the advanced age and cancerous side effects from his exposure to the Luteces' Tears pushed him further into senility. Even his Burial at Sea counterpart, still younger at the time of Elizabeth's death, went into an outright fugue state upon creating a new identity in Rapture, and only learned who he really was by the time of his death.
- Scam Religion: Comstock was originally quite aware that he wasn't a prophet and that his visions were the result of science, not faith. However, he nevertheless cultivated a religon which worships him and his ideals in an attempt to create his vision of a perfect world. However, probably due to his declining mental state and after he killed anyone who could expose him, he came to genuinely believe he was a prophet of god. Rosalind Lutece even remarks on it in an audio log. Oh and he takes advantage of his divine status to charge a 50% tithe on the people of Columbua.
- Seven Deadly Sins: Quite ironically for a man who wants to destroy the entire surface for their (perceived) sin, he fits all of the seven deadly sins.
- Lust: He desires absolute power over everyone in Columbia
- Envy: Hes implied to be jealous of Bookers ability to accept that hes done monstrous things unlike him.
- Sloth: Rather than take any actual steps towards becoming a better person and atoning for his sins, he took a single baptism and saw himself as a changed man who was incapable of wrongdoing.
- Wrath: Wants to destroy the entire Sodom Below and has no qualms with killing anyone who gets in his way, even his own wife..
- Greed: He charges a 50% tithe on every citizen in Columbia.
- Gluttony: He rules his own city and is worshipped as a holy prophet yet still wishes to destroy and have control over the surface.
- Pride: He sees himself as a man chosen by God Himself and Columbia is more or less an alter for people to worship him at.
- Shadow Archetype: For Booker. Justified because they're the same person, though post-Wounded Knee they diverge in how they cope with the crushing guilt of what they've done. If there's any trait that Comstock and Booker share, it's that they both have incredibly poor ability to handle their own guilt. Booker is crushed under the weight of his own sins, and too full of self-hatred to believe he could be worth any redemption. Comstock, however, constantly runs away from his own guilt, and is completely unable to confront his guilt and deal with the fact that he's a horrible person. As a result, Comstock is always seeking someone else's life as a form of escapism, taking any excuse to not be the murderous, guilt-stricken Booker DeWitt. However, where Comstock chose to dissociate himself from his own guilt, Booker is entirely too aware of what kind of person he is, and is broken by it. Still, at least he displays actual regret and responsibility for his actions, making his method slightly healthier. Slightly.
- Shut Up, Kirk!: Elizabeth tries talking sense to "Final Comstock", but when diplomacy doesn't work out, she and the Luteces wind up chasing him to Rapture and executing him. Subverted in that Comstock begs for forgiveness by the end — a day late and a dollar short.
- The Sociopath: Manipulated a city of people to die for him, imprisoned and tortured his daughter, and planned to have her destroy major cities on the earth just to avoid any responsibility for his actions at Wounded Knee.
- Sinister Minister: He's a kind old prophet... who has brainwashed a city and wants to declare war on the world to make it holy, and has a tendency to believe his own lies.
- Start of Darkness: Ironically, it was an act meant to cleanse his sins that created Comstock; in accepting baptism to try and redeem his sins at Wounded Knee, Comstock, in a case of Dramatically Missing the Point for the ages, took "go forth and sin no more" to mean that his actions were justified and that nothing he did was a sin. This moment is so pivotal to Comstock's story that averting it prevents his entire existence.
- Sympathy for the Devil: A Downplayed In-Universe example can be seen in Burial at Sea: Episode One — a conversation that Final Comstock and Elizabeth share after reaching Fontaine's department store makes it evident that he does have some sympathy for the splicers, and can even understand the addictive needs that drove them into embracing ADAM, but not so much as to blind him to how dangerous they are. He also implies he's seen splicers tearing Little Sisters apart in order to get their ADAM, which understandably undercuts his ability to sympathize with them.
- That Man Is Dead: His whole life before his baptism, when he was Booker DeWitt was supposed to be this. Eventually he loses his marbles and starts taking credit for the very deeds that drove him to seek absolution in the first place.
- Time Master: He's Nostradamus with heavy artillery; a formidable foe, indeed.
- Utopia Justifies the Means: He goes farther than either Andrew Ryan or Sofia Lamb in trying to make his vision of Eden a reality, ultimately plotting to have his utopia destroy "the Sodom Below."
- Villainous Breakdown: In the last third of the game, his repeated failures at capturing Elizabeth/killing Booker slowly make him more unstable. When confronted in person on the Hand of the Prophet, the previously Faux Affably Evil Comstock ends up flipping out at both in rage.
- Villain Protagonist: Of the first Burial At Sea DLC, though how much of a villain he is is unclear. Though how he acts before his death doesn't help him look any better...
- Villain with Good Publicity: He's regarded as the "Hero of Wounded Knee" for his role in the Battle of Wounded Knee, which in history is better known as the Wounded Knee Massacre. In it, he performed the associated atrocities for the sake of gaining the acceptance of the other soldiers in spite of his Native American ancestry.
- Visionary Villain: And an extremely charismatic one, too, able to secure funding to build a flying city on the basis of a few visions.Comstock: "And then, the archangel showed a vision: a city, lighter than air. I asked her, "Why do you show this to me, archangel? I'm not a strong man. I'm not a righteous man. I am not a holy man." And she told me the most remarkable thing: "You're right, Prophet. But if grace is within the grasp of one such as you, how can anyone else not see it in themselves?"
- Voice of the Legion: Often addresses Booker through speakers that cause a deeper-pitched delayed echo of his voice. On the other hand, this could just be Booker's perception; his brain's way of telling him that Booker and Comstock are one and the same.
- White Man's Burden: He is a big believer in this, taken straight into rationalization of slavery, detesting Abraham Lincoln as emancipating blacks from their "rightful place". He sees the duty of the white people to rule over and shepherd all the others.
- He also says the trope name word for word in an audio log.
- You Killed My Father: Daisy Fitzroy was accused of killing his wife. It is later revealed that Comstock had her killed because she wouldn't be willing to keep Elizabeth's secret. Fitzroy was a scullery maid in the wrong place at the wrong time he could use to deflect blame away from himself.
- Younger Than They Look: Comstock is the same age as Booker, but appears older due to the Luteces' experiments taking a toll on his health. It become more apparent in Burial at Sea when he shaves; he looks like a white-haired Booker.
Lady Annabelle Comstock (née Watson)
- Voiced by: Laura Bailey
The late wife of Comstock who supposedly gave birth to Elizabeth a mere seven days after conception. She is worshipped as a martyr after her (supposed) assassination at the hands of Daisy Fitzroy.
- All-Loving Hero: Much loved by her servant staff for this reason, and why she stuck around Comstock despite his supervillainy. This did not end well. It's also deconstructed, implying that the reason she was like this is because she was codependent.
- Alternate Self: Ken Levine confirms she and Booker's wife are the same person.
- The Atoner: In contrast to the saintly persona Comstock built around her, her personal Voxophone recordings reveal she was some sort of dangerous Femme Fatale before she joined up with Comstock. However, Comstock convinced her to seek redemption and she genuinely devoted herself to being a better person, which is why she remained so loyal to Comstock even after she began to realize just how much of a monster he was.
- Ax-Crazy: After being raised from the dead, infused with Elizabeth's hatred.
- Alternate Universe Reed Richards Is Awesome: In one universe, she was married to a self-proclaimed Prophet and was easily the most powerful woman in the city where everyone loved her. In another, she was married to a deadbeat former Pinkerton agent with a serious case of PTSD.
- Came Back Wrong: All those with Tear Sickness did, but the Siren is the only one to actually go Ax-Crazy. Partly because the Siren isn't just her, but also Elizabeth's feelings of who she would be. Once Elizabeth talks to her, she calms down.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: She sees Elizabeth as the product between the affair of Comstock and Rosalind Lutece and refuses to listen to the latter's explanation of how Elizabeth's existence.
- Comic-Book Fantasy Casting: Her appearance in the painting of her in-game, seen above, is clearly based on this painting◊ of Alice Roosevelt, the daughter of Theodore Roosevelt.
- Damage-Sponge Boss: She's the strongest humanoid enemy in the game, bar none.
- Dead Alternate Counterpart: In the reality in which Booker rejected baptism, she died giving birth to her daughter. Because Comstock was sterile, her death was simply postponed by two years.
- Death by Childbirth: She died giving birth to Anna/Elizabeth in the reality Booker rejected baptism.
- Demoted to Extra: In a sense. During development, the Siren is supposed to be a recurring opponent and Lady Comstock will not be the only one. In the final version, only a single Siren appear as a recurring boss.
- Dramatic Irony: Lady Comstock believes that Elizabeth is not her daughter. This is only half true as she IS her daughter from an alternate timeline.
- Flunky Boss: Despite her high health, Lady Comstock herself is objectively a pushover. She only possesses a single, medium-range AOE attack, and she telegraphs it well in advance. What makes her dangerous is her small army of zombie soldiers which she can resurrect if they are killed (unless you vaporize them).
- Fluorescent Footprints: She leaves behind glowing footprints whilst traversing Emporia.
- Foreshadowing: She asks if it's possible to redeem Comstock. It was, by killing the man who would become him and leaving the alternate DeWitt who would never become him.
- HeelFaith Turn: Before she met Comstock, Annabelle Watson used to take advantage of many suitors.
- He Knows Too Much: Comstock kills her (and the Luteces) once she catches on that Elizabeth is not their daughter in order to keep that information from reaching the public.
- Large Ham: As The Siren.Lady Comstock: BASTARD CHILD BASTARD!
- Last-Name Basis: Only referred to as Lady Comstock; her first and maiden names are never revealed except by Word of God, though her first initial can be seen on a Hall of Heroes advertisement.
- Leitmotif: A section of Mozart's Requiem is associated with her. As the Siren, she sings a heavily distorted version of the song.
- The Lost Lenore:
- So, so much. And so, so played with, given that the person she was the Lenore to was the one that murdered her.
- Her alternate self's death was also mourned by the same person till this very day and coped her death by drinking and gambling. To remember her, her husband name their daughter after her.
- Make Me Wanna Shout: Sings loudly enough to reach the other-world.
- Necromancer: Raises enemies from the dead as the Siren.
- Nice to the Waiter: According to Daisy, Lady Comstock treated her servant staff a lot better than most, especially considering who she was married to.
- Our Ghosts Are Different: The Siren is not so much as a ghost but Lady Comstock being suspended between life and death as well as being influenced by Elizabeth's resentment towards her.
- Posthumous Character: Died nineteen years before Booker reaches Columbia. Until Comstock uses Elizabeth's powers to resurrect her as the Siren. But even that isn't really her.
- Red Herring: Believed to be Elizabeth's mother, but it's revealed that Comstock was infertile and thus couldn't have had a child with her. She didn't take kindly to that, thinking Comstock and Rosalind were having an affair behind her back. When that was debunked by Rosalind, she confronted Comstock, who murdered her and framed Daisy Fitzroy. There are hints, however, that she is an Alternate Universe version of Elizabeth/Anna's mother: her closest friends growing up called her Anna, which may mean that protagonist!Booker did the religious thing, and named his child after a dead relative.
- Removing the Head or Destroying the Brain: She's an example of where this trope doesn't work. Destroying the heads of her undead minions will kill them, but she can put the heads back. Complete vaporization, however, will do them in for good (most of the time).
- Simple, yet Opulent: Her blue dress has very few trimmings, but is still fittingly fancy for someone of her status. Most of the fanciest stuff — the pearls, lace, bodice, Nice Hat — aren't even worn when Elizabeth puts on the dress.
- Strong Family Resemblance: She looks quite similar to Elizabeth, especially when their clothing matches. She is implied to be an alternate universe version of Elizabeth's mother. The gate even mistakes Elizabeth for Lady Comstock when she has on the same dress.
- Tragic Monster: Gets turned into the Siren, born out of Comstock's mad science, grief, and Elizabeth's negative feelings for her.
- Voiced by: Bill Lobley
The major leader of industry within Columbia. Though affable, his business practices are wildly unethical, to the point where he demands sixteen-hour work days and ruthlessly exploits the underclass of Columbia in the name of profit.
- Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Not that it helps him stop Daisy Fitzroy from shooting him in the face.
- The Alcoholic: Within the private church of his home Elizabeth finds over a dozen bottles of Absinthe.
- Animal Motifs: Jeremiah loves to employ them in his propoganda to keep workers in line. Workers are cattle, those in charge are lions, and those who don't work are hyenas. He also tells his employs to be like the bee, a constant worker.
- Asshole Victim: Downplayed. While Fink is a horrible human being and had certain karma coming his way, his last moments of defending a child and feebly begging for his own life evoke a measure of pity and uncertainty for the situation as Fitzroy seemingly loses her mind from her bloodlust.
- Bad Boss: Constantly makes excuses why he won't better pay his employees, give them any time off or make their workloads easier. Usually comes down to "The Vox are planting ideas in your head!" or "I don't want anyone taking advantage of you!" (Except him, obviously.)
- Bad People Abuse Animals: In his research on the Songbird, Fink used countless animals in inhumane genetic experiments. Elizabeth is enraged at the discovery.
- Bad Guys Do the Dirty Work: His role in Columbia. Comstock certainly isn't a "good guy," but he's convinced himself otherwise. Fink comes to realize that Comstock needs him to oversee the less-than-heavenly aspects of life in Columbia to help keep his conscience clear.Fink: The truth is, I dont have a lot of time for all that prophecy nonsense. I tell you, belief is... is just a commodity. And old Comstock, well, he does produce. But, like any tradesman, he's obliged to barter his product for the earthly ores. You see, one does not raise a barn on song alone. No, sir! Why, that's Fink timber, a Fink hammer, and Fink's hand to swing it! He needs me... lest he soil his own.
- Beneath the Mask: It can be inferred that, behind his hammy public persona, Fink is genuinely depressed with his place as Comstock's mule judging from his private quarters strewn with alcohol and vandalized shrine of Comstock.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: With a fellow Mad Scientist Dr Suchong. Together they perfected the vigors/plasmids and finalized the Big Daddies (and the Songbird). While Suchong was the inventor of both, Fink contributed a lot, which is explained in Burial at Sea.
- Blatant Lies: Pretty much of his Canned Orders over Loudspeaker claiming that his unscrupulous treatment of his workers is for their own good.
- Boom, Headshot!: How Daisy Fitzroy takes him out during the Vox Populi rebellion in the third universe that Elizabeth and Booker visit.
- Composite Character: He's more-or-less Dr. Suchong, working within the law rather than outside it to attain profits. He also mimics the theatricality and cowardice of Sander Cohen.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Of the "Robber Baron" sub-variety — he's a money-grubbing industrialist who enjoys trampling on his workers' welfare and maximize profits in any way he sees fit. He's practically everything wrong with unregulated 19th-century business tycoons, turned Up to Eleven.
- Dastardly Whiplash: Significantly more serious than most examples, but has the top hat, handlebar mustache, and utter lack of anything resembling human decency.
- Dirty Coward: Both used and averted. While he clearly is afraid of the Vox and runs from their forces, he does die trying to protect a child that may have been his.
- Egopolis: Finkton. The only part of town controlled by him. It is a Shantytown, though...
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Possibly, seeing as in his last moments before Daisy Fitzroy shot him, he was standing almost defensively in front of a child who may have been his son. Judging from Voxophones, he also seems to have at least some affection for his brother, Albert.
- Eviler Than Thou: Played with. In a few Voxophone recordings, it's shown than Fink has no scruples at all, whereas Comstock at least feels somewhat guilty about some of the horrible things he does to keep Columbia operational (or at least, Fink seems to believe that he does). However, Fink ends up dying unceremoniously without actually doing much of anything about halfway through the game, while the last act of the game goes to great lengths to show that Comstock is much more evil and ruthless than he initially appears.
- Evil Genius: Like any industrialist, he no doubt outsources a lot of his work, but he's nonetheless shown to have a technical background, and is responsible for the production of much of Columbia's high technology, including Songbird and the Handymen. This is why Comstock hired him to assassinate the Luteces, as only he had the skill to sabotage their machine in such a way that their deaths would look like an accident.
- Family-Values Villain: As part of his "upstanding follower of The Founders" public image, he insists he can't allow his workers any sort of leisure time, lest their idle hands turn to whiskey, women, and dice. As shown in Burial at Sea, his private altar is actually shrouded in dust, littered with bottles of booze, and mocking comments from Fink himself are scrawled on the floor and statues. There's even a knife jammed into The Word of the Prophet book on the pew.
- Faux Affably Evil: His jovial mannerisms do nothing to mask his arrogance.
- Hypocrite: Fink outright admits in private that he doesn't buy an ounce of Comstock's rhetoric, and certainly doesn't see him as a divine or holy figure (one Voxophone hints he's actually an atheist). Certainly nothing wrong with that viewpoint, especially given what a monster Comstock is, but Fink takes complete advantage of Columbia's theocratic governmental structure. He actually persuaded Comstock to find an excuse to treat non-whites as lesser citizens in Columbia purely so he'd have a basis for how to exploit and mistreat his workforce. He also has no trouble exploiting peoples' loyalty and divine viewpoint of Comstock to get the best deal for himself
- Hidden Depths: In Burial at Sea, Elizabeth explores Finks tower and finds a giant clock with a huge segment labeled WORK, much smaller ones PRAYER and TRAINING, and the smallest being LEISURE and SLEEP. Your first thought is that this is for Finks workers with a 16-hour workday and deprivation of any meaningful rest and recreation. Then you realize its Finks own timetable. His bed is small, facing a myriad of security screens and surrounded by telephones. The leisure room is filled with diagrams and other work-related stuff, and the only item related to leisure is a confiscated film projector with Fitzroys propaganda. The guy may be despicable, but it's evident he puts himself through the same torturous labor he enforces on his own workers.
- In Love with Your Carnage: Upon observing Booker in combat at the fairground, Fink starts sending him compliments by way of gifts. It turns out that he's actually hoping to employ Booker as his new security chief after the old one, uh, got the sack.
- Insane Troll Logic: His justifications for treating his workers like slaves make no sense to anyone but himself. Here's just one example:Not happy with your pay? Well, be of good cheer. History tells us the painter Seurat would take no money for his art! Why, that George Washington would only accept the presidency if he were paid a single dollar a year! So, don't let money come between you and your craft!
- Lack of Empathy: It is clear from the get-go that Fink doesn't seem to give a damn about anyone but himself. However, his last actions in defending a child and a Voxophone lamenting about his brother indicate he is capable of some empathy.
- Large Ham: He is a ridiculously theatrical and bombastic villain. Interestingly, this may be an act, as he is much more subdued and rational in his Voxophone recordings.
- Mad Scientist: In addition to being a mechanical genius, he is responsible for the Vigors and manages an extensive network of biological labs.
- Make It Look Like an Accident: Fink was selected to assassinate the Lutece twins because he knew how to make the incident seem accidental. It didn't stick, or at least in the way Comstock wanted to.
- Meaningful Name: The name "Fink" is actually pretty old and derived from finch — the bird — but these days, it holds general connotations of scumminess and dishonesty.
- Narcissist: Brought into sharp relief by the hundred-foot-tall golden statue of himself outside his factory.note And of course, the town being named "Finkton".Booker: [upon seeing the statue] *whistles*Elizabeth: Well, the man's got an ego.
- Zig-zagged in Burial at Sea. While all public areas of Finks building are excessively pompous, his private quarters are surprisingly modest.
- Necessarily Evil: In a strange way, his position in Columbia. While Comstock is the beacon of hope and virtue to the people, he allowed Fink to oversee the unpleasant parts of life in the city and the day-to-day dirtiness that comes with keeping the city afloat (One Voxophone implied Fink first started taking aboard a servant-class to address civil unrest at Columbia not being as heavenly as promised). Having Fink handle these things means Comstock can believe himself to be uninvolved in the suffering it causes. Fink even comes to realize this in a Voxophone, pointing out that he's indispensable because he lets Comstock hold onto a clean conscience.
- Nice Hat: Sports a spectacular top hat. He's shot through it once Daisy Fitzroy catches up to him.
- No Historical Figures Were Harmed: He seems to be inspired by various 19th century industrialists, notably George Pullman (who also built a town for his employees and paid them in tokens worthless outside company stores, exactly like Fink) and Henry Clay Frick who had similar attitudes toward strikes, at one point hiring 300 Pinkertons and siccing them on striking workers, the similarities being such that Frick was probably the direct inspiration for Booker's "I've worked for men like Fink" line.
- No Honor Among Thieves: According to Burial at Sea, he was working with Suchong for a mutual goal... until he succeeded by himself and then broke the alliance with the doctor, causing the two to go back to spying on each other.
- Obviously Evil: Even before you learn the true nature of Columbia, it's still easy to guess that Fink is a villain due to his smarmy attitude, giant top-hat, and curly mustache. Not to mention that once he appears, he immediately prompts Booker to throw a baseball at an interracial couple (in what appears to be a public execution through a version of stoning), complete with a racist joke. The fact that the game allows the player to toss the ball in Fink's face instead is immensely satisfying (sadly, Booker is interrupted by the police before he can actually do it).
- Odd Friendship: His correspondence with Dr. Suchong, a Korean, through the tears to learn how to derive the ADAM into salts can seem rather unusual as it goes against the racist doctrine of Columbia. However, this is subverted in that Fink is a man driven by profit and doesn't even buy into Columbia's doctrine despite being a racist.
- Only in It for the Money: In the Voxophone recordings, he explicitly says this is the sole reason he works for Comstock.
- Plagiarism in Fiction: Most of his tech is copied from things he saw through the tears, and a Voxophone in the Clash in the Clouds DLC by Rosalind accuses him of patent theft even before he found the Tears. Given Rosalind has no reason to lie, she's probably not wrong. This is taken further in Burial at Sea: Vigors are plagiarized from Dr. Yi Suchong's work with Plasmids.
- Politically Incorrect Villain:
- In his very first appearance, he presides over the stoning of a mixed-race couple and when Booker hesitates, he teasingly accuses him of "taking your coffee black."
- A Voxophone recording found not long afterwards reveals that he was once involved in the transport of "Negro convicts" from Georgia to use as cheap slave labor in Columbia, and tells Comstock to pass them off as "seeking forgiveness" for "rising above their station" if it helps ease his conscience. Fink himself obviously doesn't care so long as he gets workers.
- Pragmatic Villainy: Compared to Comstock's stance as a Visionary Villain. While hardly anyone's idea of a saint, Fink is ultimately just a selfish, unscrupulous man whose political connections with Comstock gave him the means to run certain areas of Columbia like his own private fiefdom. His only goals are to further his own wealth at the expense of others. Even he likely would've been horrified by Comstock's plans for Columbia, and what it would mean for the people living below them.
- Sadist: He loves the "work" he puts his "employees" through.
- Smug Snake: Fink certainly has enough influence and cunning on his side to make him a formidable enemy, but his over-inflated ego and profound greed keep him from being truly impressive.
- Straw Hypocrite: Claims to be a devoted follower of the Prophet, but his private altar and Voxophone recordings reveal him not only to be a pretty flagrant atheist, but also showing contempt to Comstock's claims to prophethood. Comstock apparently knows this, but lets it slide because Fink's industrial output gets results. Fink mainly uses religious rhetoric to keep his workers in line and justify his mistreatment of them, but they don't buy it.
- There Are Two Kinds of People in the World: He believes there are three:Fink: You see, a company is like Noah's Ark. You have the lions, whose purpose is to keep order amongst the lesser creatures. Then you have the cow. The beasts of burden. Now, they provide meat, milk, and labor. And then, well, there are the hyenas. The troublemakers. Who only serve to rile up the cattle. The hyena is a trickster. They live to stir up trouble. So, you beware the hyena. They will leave you with naught but the sound of their laughter!
- Wearing a Flag on Your Head: The band of his hat is striped red, white, and blue.
- Workaholic: The only thing he shares with his employees is the length of the working hours. And then he does muse on his inventions a bit more during the leisure times.
- Bit Character: The one time anyone gets to see him is when he's dead in his Magical Melodies studio.
- Plagiarism in Fiction: All of "his" music is stolen from bands he observed through his Tear — which is the reason why songs like "Tainted Love", "Fortunate Son", "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun", and "Shiny Happy People", among others, can be heard throughout Columbia.
- Posthumous Character: His only appearance is in the "Vox have guns" universe, where he's found lying dead on the floor of his studio after being killed, with his brother's Voxophone recording nearby.
The relentless mechanical guardian of Elizabeth. He resembles a cross between a dragon and a giant bird, and seems hell-bent on preventing Elizabeth from escaping Columbia.
- Achilles' Heel: For all his impressive strength and resilience, Songbird's body was not designed to cope with constant water pressure; after diving into Battleship Bay in an attempt to pursue and kill Booker, the pressure at less than thirty feet is enough to actually fracture one of its eyes and force it to retreat. In the finale, Elizabeth takes advantage of this weakness by teleporting the Songbird, Booker and herself to Rapture — ensuring that Songbird arrives at the bottom of the ocean.
- Advertised Extra: The creature appears in many of the game trailers and early game concepts had it as a recurring boss of the game, similar to Nemesis in Resident Evil 3, and the player would decide on whether or not to attack Songbird or hide from it, which would affect Booker's relationship with Elizabeth and the overall ending. However, none of this is in the final game — it only appears in a few scripted events, is never actually battled in game, and in the end is easily killed by Elizabeth without a fight.
- Alas, Poor Villain: Songbird's final moments are an unexpectedly peaceful and somber affair, with Elizabeth comforting him and Songbird reaching out to her before he calms and finally breaks down.
- Ambiguous Robots: He's obviously not human anymore, but it's unclear if he ever was, and it's unimportant as far as Elizabeth is concerned. Early designs Fink was working on included tests on gorillas and dogs. Diagrams at Finks laboratory show a human body inside the suit, though it may be for scale purposes only (and the actual Songbird is bigger than on the drawings).
- Androcles' Lion: Episode Two of Burial at Sea reveals that all attempts to imprint Songbird to Elizabeth using pheromones, hypnosis, mental conditioning, etc, were colossal failures. Ironically, the solution came about from a simple act of kindness from the young Elizabeth, who took pity on an injured Songbird and reattached his loose breathing tube, leading Songbird to develop Undying Loyalty to her.
- Ax-Crazy: The Songbird is capable of interacting with its environment in only one way to keep custody of Elizabeththrough violence. (Of course, due to gameplay constraints, the same is largely true of Booker DeWitt.)
- Crazy Jealous Guy: He immediately grows suspicious when Booker enters Elizabeth's tower, and quickly degenerates into tearing the place apart, along with trying to kill Booker every time the two meet.
- Creepy Crows: Sort of, has a raven motif going on along with the Songbird one.
- Creepy High-Pitched Voice: Songbird's eerie cries are very high-pitched, like his namesake.
- Disco Tech: He is activated by a series of notes that he can hear across Columbia. Playing the notes on a special set of pipes will summon him to the location.
- The Dragon: Elizabeth even refers to him as Comstock's pet.
- The Dreaded: You'll probably come to fear him anytime he shows up, due to how absurdly large he is, the way he tends to tear apart whatever structure you're in, and the fact that you can't harm him in any way.
- Expy: In-universe, he was created based on Fink's observations of the Big Daddies of Rapture, which explains his need to protect Elizabeth, an alternate Little Sister. His eye color change is even identical. In terms of obsession and because of his mysterious past and transformation, he is similar to Subject Delta.
- Face Death with Dignity: Implied, when his eyes turn green.
- Feathered Fiend: Of the Steampunk variety. Subverted as he doesnt have actual feathers, nor are his attacks resembling a birds - he prefers punching his victims with fists rather than raking with talons of his feet, and his beak cannot be used as a weapon.
- Fluffy the Terrible: Such a lovely name for such a terrifying beast.
- Gas Mask Mooks: More of a boss than a mook, but his headgear is basically a huge gas mask with a hose connected to the beak.
- Giant Flyer: Essentially a Big Daddy with wings and a bird-themed helmet rather than a diving bell. It's remarkably agile for its size and the fact it was apparently built in the late 1890s. Episode Two of Burial at Sea reveals that this is because Songbird is actually a fusion of technology from 1890s Columbia and 1950s Rapture, created in conjunction with the Big Daddies.
- HeelFace Turn: He becomes your ally once you've acquired a MacGuffin from an alternate future Elizabeth to allow present day Elizabeth the ability to control him. He is incredibly useful in taking down those Vox airships that descend on you at that point.
- Hero Killer: The crux of Bad Future Elizabeth's message to Booker is that every iteration of him that confronts the Songbird in pursuit of Elizabeth dies in the process. In order to avoid this fate, she hands him a note for the younger Elizabeth to decode, which tells her how to control the Songbird.
- Hopeless Boss Fight: You can't actually defeat Songbird at any point in the game by yourself, often being forced to run away from him and it's outright stated that it's impossible for Booker to defeat him; Elizabeth says that there was no timeline where Booker ever fought Songbird and won. The only reason Songbird is defeated is because Elizabeth's full Reality Warper potential isn't being held back.
- Implacable Man: You don't fight him so much as inconvenience him so you can run away some more... and given that he can destroy battleship-sized zeppelins and entire floating islands in seconds, you really can't inconvenience him much.
- Invincible Villain: Is immune to everything short of water pressure, and according to Elizabeth there is no timeline where Booker defeated the Songbird. Only by transporting him to Rapture does he finally die.
- Ironic Nursery Rhyme: Inspired one about him.Songbird, Songbird, see him fly
Drop the children from the sky
When the young ones misbehave
Escorts children to their grave
Never back-talk, never lie
Or he'll drop you from the sky
- The Juggernaut: With the exception of water pressure, nothing can stop Songbird. Shooting at him is a waste of ammunition, and he tears through zeppelins with no effort at all.
- Leitmotif: Both this song and a short whistling tune which signals his arrival. It's actually the notes C-A-G-E played in sequence, and someone who plays it can control him.
- Logical Weakness: Songbird is built to work in the skies, not in the water, so water pressure is his worst enemy. He finally dies upon being transported to Rapture, where the ocean depths crush him to death.
- Murder the Hypotenuse: Has been programmed to kill anyone who tries to help Elizabeth escape from him. Even if he reclaims her, he'll continue attacking in rage unless she claims responsibility herself and apologizes.
- Overprotective Dad: How he comes off in the final product due to his role in raising young Elizabeth, fittingly for a Big Daddy Expy. Lampshaded by Rosalind Lutece in the DLC:Fink's bird is a repulsive creature. But I suppose a prison needs a guard. What surprised me is not how the girl has imprinted upon the monster. After all, one might observe a baby chimpanzee to accept a wire replica for its mother. But I did not expect the brute to be capable of forming an attachment in return. Perhaps it could prove to be a better father than the two she has known.
- Person of Mass Destruction: His very first appearance involves him ripping the Monument Island statue almost in half in his attempts to retrieve Elizabeth and destroy the intruder Booker; further appearances show that he's more than capable of knocking airships out of the sky and tearing the roofs off of buildings with his bare hands. During the finale, he not only destroys Vox Populi airships and zeppelins with ease, but obliterates what little remains of Monument Island, taking the Siphon along with it.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Like the Big Daddies of Rapture, his eyes change color to indicate his mood: green means he's friendly, orange means he's neutral, and red means he's aggressive.
- Stalker with a Crush: To Elizabeth, explicitly meant to have undertones of an abusive relationship.
- Summon Bigger Fish: Booker gains control of the Songbird for air strikes in the end of the game using a whistle, until the whistle is damaged by the power surge from the Siphon being destroyed.
- Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: Dies when Elizabeth transports herself, Booker, and him to Rapture. Unlike the Big Daddies, he isn't built for high pressure, so the undersea pressure crushes him.
- The Unfought: Despite all of the foreshadowing and build-up, you never end up in a boss battle against Songbird. Instead, he joins your side for a battle against an army of enemy Zeppelins. In fact, it's stated that Booker will always fall to Songbird, and only succeeds when an Elizabeth from the future has him pass Songbird's control song over to her past self.
- Unstoppable Rage: When he finds out that Elizabeth has been taken, the resulting rampages destroys much of the city. And you're on the receiving end of much of it.
- The Unreveal: We vaguely learn how he was made, and that he was probably once human, but we never learn exactly who — or what — he was. He is by far the most mysterious entity in the game.
- Was Once a Man: One of Fink's Voxophone recordings reveals he is a cyborg. Given his sheer size, it must have taken a lot of augmentation.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Water, specifically water pressure. When he dives into Battleship Bay after Booker, what little water pressure there is causes his glass eye to crack. So you can imagine what happens when Elizabeth opens a Tear leading to Rapture...
- Yandere: What, the obsession and tendency for murderous rages didn't tip you off?
- All There in the Manual: His first name is only used in the board game BioShock Infinite: The Siege of Columbia.
- Ax-Crazy: Only in the gameplay preview, however. When Saltonstall spots Booker carrying one of the sniper rifles that he was giving away for free, he ends his speech to an audience of empty chairs, screams that Booker is an assassin, sics his Vigor-using goon on him, hops a Sky-Line, climbs into an artillery turret, and begins launching explosive rounds - not just from several miles away, but from a distance of no more than 20 feet, aiming directly at a populated building.
- Bald of Evil: Well, in the trailer, he's still got some hair on the back of his head. Enough for the Vox to scalp, anyway.
- The Ghost: Was removed from the game despite being a major character in the trailers. The citizens still talk about him though, and his flayed scalp makes an appearance in the final game, so most likely he is just behind the scenes.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Because he's firing so closely to his target, Booker telekinetically catches the shell in mid-air and ejects it back at him, blowing both him and his cannon to pieces.
- Large Ham: In the 2010 demo.Saltonstall: CHARLES! ATTEND!!
The First Zealot
The founder of the Fraternal Order of the Raven, affiliated with the Founders Party.
- Politically Incorrect Villain: As expected from a KKK Expy, he and his Order are heavily racist.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: As well as The Unfought. He appears only on a single Voxophone recording. He may be either the priest at the Order sermon or the Zealot mini-boss shortly after (both of whom Booker dispatches quickly), but this is not confirmed.
A citizen of Columbia and a high-ranking member of the city's police.
Dr. Harrison Powell
- Voiced by: Kimberly D. Brooks
The face of the Vox Populi, working to free Columbia from the iron fist of the Founders so it can be seized by the iron fist of Daisy Fitzroy instead. Originally a hapless servant girl, she went on the run for the murder of Lady Comstock, which radicalized her. Daisy is highly intelligent and resourceful, with once-noble intentions that have been worn down over several years of fruitless fighting into an all-consuming thirst for violence. She returns in Burial At Sea where we get brief glimpses into her deeper motivations.
- Anti-Villain: She turns on Booker immediately after he completes her quest and leads a revolution against Columbia, which generally involves mass murder and setting buildings to blaze. Additionally, she proves more than willing to kill children in order to achieve her goals. However, she's got REALLY good reasons to hate Comstock's group and she's at least well-meaning and she only went through with the attempt on the child in question's life because the Luteces A: put her up to it and B: they assured her that she would be killed by Elizabeth before she could actually hurt the kid.
- Ax-Crazy: While the Daisy we meet is bossy and ruthless, she pales in comparison to an alternate Daisy, who's more than willing to kill children if it means putting a stop to people like Fink. However, in Burial at Sea: Episode Two, we learn she was faking being that insane in a Strike Me Down with All of Your Hatred! maneuver.
- Big Bad Ensemble: It initially appears, from early press releases as well as the first few hours of the game, that Comstock and Fitzroy are equally positioned in terms of being the main antagonists of the story... however, Fitzroy is killed rather unceremoniously halfway through before the plot even really takes off, and the finale clearly shows that Comstock was always the main event, and that Fitzroy is entirely incidental to the multiversal destiny of the main plot.
- Black Boss Lady: Very competently runs the Vox Populi, making her a dangerous foe.
- Broken Pedestal: Elizabeth admires her for attempting to bring about a better lot for Columbia's underclass until she gets a glimpse of how Fitzroy's people operate.
- Cutscene Boss: You never get to fight her. DeWitt simply distracts her long enough for Elizabeth to kill her.
- Dark Action Girl: A radical who doesn't hesitate to take matters into her own hands.
- Dark Messiah: She is the violent messiah that will save Columbia from the Founders, whether it wants to be saved or not.
- Dirty Business: Hates that she has to fake her insanity and attempt to kill Jeremiah Fink's son, but the Luteces tell her that she needs to do so to make Elizabeth desperate enough to kill.
- Disc-One Final Boss: Although her death doesn't slow down the Vox at all; up to the near-end of the game, they're still very much a threat.
- Driven to Villainy: After Lady Comstock's death, every Founder in Columbia wanted her head, but she evaded them for more than 15 years. Then she started going after them.
- Everyone Has Standards: She is not happy when she thinks the Luteces want her to kill a kid.
- The Extremist Was Right: Daisy justifies her actions, most prominently attempting to execute a child implied to be Fink's young son, by stating that simply cutting down the Founders isn't enough, you need to "pull them up by the roots" before they can sprout again. In the ending, Elizabeth and Booker end up using the exact same logic to put an end to the entire cycle by killing Booker before he can become Comstock. Of course, the difference lies in that Booker chooses to kill himself to eliminate his proven inner darkness, rather than slaughter an innocent child under the assumption he might turn evil like his father was. Burial at Sea reveals that the Luteces had her pretend to try to kill Fink's son so that Elizabeth would be able to kill Booker.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Went from a fugitive scullery maid to a violent revolutionary.
- Good All Along: We discover in Burial at Sea that she sacrificed her life to motivate Elizabeth to kill Comstock by deliberately invoking A Real Man Is a Killer.
- Good Counterpart: Burial at Sea gives a pretty good comparison between Fitzroy and Atlas. Fitzroy comes out looking much better than she did in the main game when put up directly next to Atlas, who's shown to be pretty much pure evil, regardless of the persona he's putting up.
- The Greatest Story Never Told: Well we do eventually get to learn it, but Booker and most of the Vox and Columbia regard Daisy as an Ax-Crazy psycho when she was actually a Stealth Mentor for Elizabeth to destroy Comstock and Columbia.
- Hero of Another Story: In Burial At Sea, she is shown to interact with the Luteces and seems familiar with Elizabeth.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Burial at Sea: Episode Two reveals that Daisy intentionally martyred herself for her revolution and that the attempted murder of the child was an act put on to force Elizabeth to kill her. According to the Luteces, this was the only way Elizabeth would have the necessary strength and resolve to ensure Comstock's downfall.
- Improbably High I.Q.: She scored extraordinarily high on an IQ test that she took, though this is because the psychologist that was testing her was using a highly-racist and sexist version that made the internal assumption that she would naturally score far lower than a white male. She, being a smarter-than-average intellectual, really threw it off.
- In the Back: Stabbed by Elizabeth from behind in order to save the kid she was holding hostage.
- Ironic Echo: While rallying the Vox Populi, she notes that Fink and Comstock see them as nothing but livestock. When she is about to murder a child, she compares him to a weed. Though this was all part of the plan.
- Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Declaring Booker an enemy for "confusing the narrative." Definitely when she tries to kill Fink's son simply for being the child of a Founder, however, Burial at Sea: Episode Two reveals that not only was it an act, she initially refused to go through with it, refusing to hold Fink's son accountable for his father's actions. She only agreed after the Luteces tell her that she'd be killed before she could go through with it and that her sacrifice would strengthen Elizabeth's resolve to take down Comstock once and for all.
- Malcolm Xerox: A rare female example. Burial at Sea reveals she's been overplaying her militant attitude to make it easier for the Luteces to have her killed.
- "Not So Different" Remark:
- Both Booker and Elizabeth note she's Comstock by another name. Of course, she would die rather than admit it.
- In Burial At Sea, Elizabeth realizes that she and Daisy aren't all that different either.
- Rebel Leader: For the Vox. It's decidedly not a very sympathetic portrayal. Until Burial at Sea makes her more sympathetic, that is.
- Rebuilt Pedestal: When Elizabeth finds out her Hidden Depths in Burial at Sea.
- The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: She's pretty even-keeled up until the revolution occurs, during which time she becomes belligerent and bloodthirsty. Word of God says that the Vox were based on the Red Army Faction, a left-wing terrorist group active in West Germany that lashed out aimlessly over what they saw as the excessive influence of former Nazis in the government. Subverted in the end, as Burial at Sea reveals through audio diaries that she had reservations about a starting a violent revolution (even though she felt her hand had been somewhat forced) because she knew innocents may be harmed and that her "soldiers" would go too far. In the end she was more like Emma Goldman than Pol Pot, but the loose coordination of her organization and later her death would keep her from keeping a handle on the Vox armies' more disgusting actions."Yeah, there's a war comin'. You can smell it in the air. Fear. Hatred. People dyin' every day. But how many more will suffer if we rise up? Violence begets violence, I know this. I've seen this. The rational mind argues for a peaceful solution, to find a common ground, but... what common ground is there to find for a father who watches his child bleed out in the street? How do you deny him his vengeance? I know that fire that burns deep inside. I know it all too well. And when the time comes... will I be able to stay the hand?"
- Sadistic Choice: From the Luteces: Your part in the play (have Elizabeth kill her to give her the resolve to kill Comstock) or the play itself (the revolution will fail).
- The Scapegoat: She was framed for Lady Comstock's murder, in part because she was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
- She Who Fights Monsters: In her quest to take down Comstock and everything he stands for, she becomes exactly what he always claimed her to be. Played with in Burial at Sea, where it's revealed that while she didn't really want the revolution to be civil she didn't want it be too violent either. Though she did try to kill Booker because his being alive didn't fit her narrative. Subverted in the case of trying to kill Fink's son; she never actually believed in murdering the Founders' children and was faking the attempt in the first place.
- Stealth Mentor: It is revealed that she served as this for Elizabeth in the main game, in Burial at Sea.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: She is charismatic and idealistic, as well as tough and clever — all admirable qualities — but bent solely upon destruction. However, as shown in Burial At Sea: Episode Two, most of the destruction is a subversion and Training from Hell.
- With Us or Against Us: Asks Booker this right out, even if his presence in the city has nothing to do with it.Fitzroy: There's already a fight, DeWitt. Only question is, which side you on?
- In an alternate universe, it's implied he joined forces with her, but was martyred, which gave the resistance the spark they needed to rise up against the Founders.
- Wouldn't Hurt a Child: Seemingly attempts to shoot Fink's son in the head, stating that she has to start "pulling weeds from the roots". This is her Moral Event Horizon as far as Elizabeth is concerned. Also, a Voxophone from Downs reveals that Daisy uses kids as messengers, preferably non-English speakers who can't divulge anything if caught (something that Preston Downs considers an act of "low cunning"). But Burial at Sea: Episode Two reveals that Fitzroy was actually told to put on an act for Elizabeth by the Luteces, who told her that she needed to force Elizabeth to kill her in an attempt to harden her (and in exchange set forth the actions that lead to Comstock's downfall) and that she's actually disgusted with the idea of killing Fink's son.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: One of the reasons that the Daisy in the universe where Booker joined and died for the Vox wants Booker dead is that aside from thinking that he's an impostor or a ghost, she considers Booker more useful to her as a martyr than alive as a possible complication.
- Voiced by: Keith Szarabajka
A former high-ranking military leader who rebelled against Comstock after the latter re-wrote the history books of Columbia to take credit for many of Slate's own achievements.
- Alas, Poor Villain: Both if you do or do not accept to Mercy Kill him upon catching up to Slate in the Hall of Heroes. At the end of the day, all he really wanted was some simple recognition for the deeds that he did.
- Anti-Villain: Zig-zagged. He only wished for some recognition for his regiment for what they did, instead of Comstock stealing all of the credit, and was willing to give his men a warrior's death for their trouble; however, despite his emphasizing the notions of combat and valor, he doesn't shy away from the fact that his greatest battles were unprovoked massacres that killed hundreds of men, women and children.
- Benevolent Boss: Was willing to die to get his men the credit they deserve.
- Berserk Button: He absolutely hates it when people talk about Comstock's "achievements", especially when Slate is around to hear it. Comstock being heralded as the "Hero of Wounded Knee", when he wasn't even there, particularly makes Slate fly into a rage. At least, he didn't fight at Wounded Knee as Comstock, but as Booker DeWitt. It's implied that Slate knows they are the same person, but considers Booker to be the real one."COMSTOCK WASN'T THERE! The Boxers took my eye and thirty of my friends! Is there even a stone to mark their sacrifice?!"
"It was SLATE who killed for his country at Wounded Knee! It was SLATE who stormed the gates of Peking! SLATE!!!"
- Blood Knight: As evidenced in his quote above, it's not fighting against a heathen foe that he cherishes, but merely victory in glorious combat.
- The Cassandra: Shades of this, as he spends the entire museum segment complaining about things we only understand later. Including his insistence that if Comstock plans to turn people into "tin soldiers"... which, based on the inmates in Patriot masks in the asylum, may not be that far off the mark.
- Catchphrase Insult: "Tin soldier." Slate says this rather frequently, using it to describe anybody he doesn't particularly like, especially Comstock for the way that Comstock rewrote history to make Slate an Unperson. Should you refuse the Mercy Kill, Slate will also call Booker a tin soldier.
- Cutscene Boss: He powers himself up with Shock Jockey and it looks like he's going to be an actual boss fight, but he just ends up tossing down a few pre-scripted lightning traps before summoning more men to fight you and then running away. By the time you catch up to him, he's too exhausted to fight and wants Booker to Mercy Kill him.
- Death Seeker: Slate wants to die like a soldier, and when finally confronted, demands you kill him. His men are little different, throwing themselves at Booker and Elizabeth in suicidal charges. Even when Booker makes it clear that he doesn't want to fight because he has "no quarrel with these men", Slate insists on it.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: Comstock glorified Wounded Knee and the battles of the Columbian military as his own accomplishments, without so much as mentioning Slate's involvement or the sacrifices made by the men under his command. When Slate called Comstock out on this, he was removed from command and publicly disgraced.
- Enemy Mine: With Daisy Fitzroy. In a voxophone recording, Slate admits that he and his men will be seen as assassins for helping Fitzroy and her Vox Populi kill off Lady Comstock. Slate doesn't particularly care, deciding "so be it" as long as it means he can hurt Comstock in some manner.
- Entertainingly Wrong: Slate's driving grudge against Comstock is how he claims credit for the massacre at Wounded Knee and the quelling of the Boxer Rebellion, specifically for things that Booker did. The fact that Booker is right in front of him confirms his anger against Comstock. However, Comstock genuinely can take credit for those things, as he's an unnaturally aged Booker. And Booker himself is from a different reality. Both of these are things Slate couldn't possibly know.
- Eyepatch of Power: Lost an eye during the Boxer Rebellion, and now wears a patch over his eye as a result. Even with only one eye, he can still throw around Shock Jockey and command a ton of respect from his soldiers.
- Fallen Hero: He eventually stops caring about anything but a soldier's death for himself and his men, killing anyone (soldier or otherwise) who crosses his path in hopes of provoking a lethal enough response."Tin soldiers don't fight wars... MEN DO!"
- Fate Worse than Death: If he's spared in the Hall of Heroes, he's captured by Comstock's men and later found in one of Fink's interrogation cells, evidently mentally broken by torture or lobotomized.
- A Father to His Men: His men love him, and part of the reason he rebelled is because Comstock took the credit for his men's actions, not even acknowledging the loss of his men in Peking.
- A Good Way to Die: Wishes to die "like a soldier". His men also qualify for this, as they deliberately and recklessly throw themselves directly at Booker to force him to kill them.
- Honor Before Reason: He prefers dying with his honor as a soldier, rather than being Comstock's puppet. By the time Booker and Elizabeth catch up to Slate, he's already lost what few marbles he had left, becoming a full-on Death Seeker. Even though Booker and Elizabeth clearly don't want to fight him, Slate gives them little choice.
- I Die Free: Knowing what would become of him if he were to fall into Comstock's hands, he'd rather die by Booker's.
- In Love with Your Carnage: He goads Booker by expressing admiration for his actions at Wounded Knee, as part of his gambit to have Booker kill him.
- Large Ham"YOU'RE A TIN MAN, BOOKER! A TIN MAAAAN!""IT WAS SLATE WHO KILLED FOR HIS COUNTRY AT WOUNDED KNEE! IT WAS SLATE WHO STORMED THE GATES AT PEKING! SLAAAAAAAAATE!"
- Mercy Kill: When you kill him after taking the Shock Jockey vigor, Elizabeth is initially horrified but she concedes that this was probably the best for him. If you don't kill him, you can find him in Fink Manufacturing, quiet and broken by the Founders. If you kill him right away, Elizabeth notes it's what he wanted.
- Metaphorically True: Slate's actually wrong about Comstock faking his service at Wounded Knee and the Boxer Rebellion. In the former case, it's just that Comstock was going by a different name back then: Booker DeWitt.
- Not in This for Your Revolution: Slate is only affiliated with the Vox Populi simply because he despises Comstock and otherwise has no real interest in their ideals.Slate: The Fitzroy woman and I are comrades of necessity. I doubt all the men who reddened Caesar's toga would still be seen breaking bread together in peacetime.
- Patriotic Fervor: He and his men consider themselves true patriots, having fought bravely for America and later Columbia. That said, they would rather die with honor at Booker's hands rather than put up with Comstock's betrayal, since this would allow them to die fighting as soldiers.
- Pet the Dog: A Voxophone from a female soldier under his command talks of how he also commanded her father. Slate recognizes her, informs her that her dad always wanted a son, and tells her that he hopes her father isn't stupid enough to value her any less for being a daughter.
- Sanity Slippage: Slate seems to be slightly crazier at the end of his level in comparison to the start.
- Shock and Awe: He possesses the Shock Jockey Vigor, which is the main reason why Booker pursues him. During the fight with Slate's men, Slate throws around electric crystal traps to cover the field.
- Suicide by Cop: He wants Booker to kill him and his followers because he considers Booker to be the real hero, and suspects that being caught by Comstock is a far worse fate. Should you refuse to kill him, you'll find out that this wasn't wrong. Slate can eventually be found as a broken shell of a man thanks to the Founders if he's left alive.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: He wants Booker to kill him and his followers, just to spite Comstock. It's subtly implied that he knows that they are the same person, but considers Booker to be the real one instead of Comstock."They haven't changed you, Booker... Not... one... bit..."
- Unperson: Although he was at one point featured in the displays (a statue of his likeness crediting him with heroism in Peking can be seen in storage), his angry rebuke of Comstock's "service" led him to be branded a heretic; summarily, his rank was stripped, and The Prophet's biographers erased all of Slate's military achievements and appropriated them as his own.
- Voiced by: Vic Chao
A Chinese gun manufacturer who has secretly agreed to supply guns to the Vox Populi.
- Alternate Universe: After discovering that the original version of Chen Lin has died in Founder custody, Booker and Elizabeth attempt to get around this by "borrowing" another version of him from a different universe, assuming this trope is in play. It doesn't end well.
- Butt-Monkey: No matter what version of him Booker and Elizabeth encounter, he is never afforded much of a happy ending.
- The first is arrested by the Founders and is revealed to have been tortured to death.
- The second was driven insane by "reconciliation sickness": contradictory memories about two different versions of his life. Worse still, his gunmaking tools, the only things that might have kept him stable, have been seized by the Founders.
- The third version of Lin and his wife are killed during the Vox Populi uprising. It's not even clear who did it.
- Came Back Wrong: "Reconciliation" or "Tear sickness" drives him insane and delusional after a living and a dead version of him are merged.
- Happily Married: One of the few constants throughout his alternate versions is that Chen Lin is married, and his wife whichever one he marries genuinely cares for him.
- Living Macguffin: He is a gunsmith whom Daisy sends Booker after to secure weapons for the Vox in exchange for his airship back. The plot is very unkind to him. He (well, his death at least) also prompts Elizabeth to push the limits of her Reality Warper powers beyond what she grew comfortable with during her imprisonment.
- Resurrection Sickness: When Booker and Elizabeth jump into a universe where he's still alive via a Tear, the merging of the two versions of Lin's minds leaves him bleeding and delusional.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: One version of Chen is married to a white woman who is the sister of Sansmark, Fink's head of security, which prevents him from being convicted for helping the Vox. However, others do seem to have a problem with this.
A preacher recruited off the streets of Finkton who uses his fire-and-brimstone sermons to proselytize over Columbia's radios for the cause of the Vox Populi.
- Bit Character: Seen in person only once near the elevator entrance to Finkton, where he's railing about the class system to a small audience. Afterwards, he is only heard over gunship loudspeakers.
- Dragon Ascendant: His announcements serve as the 'face' of the Vox after Daisy's death.
- Large Ham: He sounds a little hammy if you stop to listen to him preaching in the Shantytown in Finkton. He sounds really hammy when he preaches over the loudspeakers of a gunship."They said they knew what was best for us... They said they knew what was coming... Did you see this coming, old man? DID YOU SEE THIS COMING, PROPHET?! You ain't gonna place your daughter on the throne! WE'RE GONNA PLACE HER IN HER GRAVE!"
- Turbulent Priest: Leads the spiritual arm of the Vox against the Founders' established rule.
Rosalind & Robert Lutece ("A Lady", "A Gentleman")
- Voiced by: Jennifer Hale and Oliver Vaquer
Rosalind: But one does not undertake an experiment knowing one has failed.
Robert: Can we get back to the rowing?
Rosalind: I suggest you do.
Two mysterious twins who keep appearing before Booker in the most improbable of places.
- Alternate Self: They are confirmed to be alternate universe versions of each other.
- Ambiguous Disorder: A lot of their character traits, such as trouble with empathy, their monotone voices, fixation on a small range of subjects (quantum physics) and occasionally rigid behaviors can come off as autistic. Robert is also seen stimming in one of Columbia's kinetoscope films.
- The Atoner: Having given Comstock the technology to build his utopia and directly aided in the kidnapping of Anna DeWitt, the Luteces assist Booker and Elizabeth in undoing it. Robert in particular feels the most remorse about the whole ordeal; Rosalind was indifferent to the status quo, but Robert threatened to leave her if she didn't help. Though they remain emotionally detached throughout the game, they do mention that Booker's presence serves as a "hairshirt" to them.
- Be as Unhelpful as Possible: Though they provide support at some key points, their answers to Booker's questions tend to be utterly useless. Justified by the fact that they're unstuck in time and by their beliefs about free will — from their perspective, there's no point in telling him anything, since they already know what will happen.
- Beware the Silly Ones: For the most part, the twins seem fairly lighthearted and comedic, despite the air of mystery about them. Then it turns out that they're complicit in Comstock's rise to power and a very nasty incidence of kidnapping; true, they're doing their best to make amends, but it's still quite jarring. For good measure, it's strongly implied that they are in the habit of murdering the less noticeable of Comstock's assassins before they can reach Booker — the first and most obvious instance being the lighthouse keeper found shot in the head.
- Big Good: A very, very bizarre version for the entire narrative. Thanks to their actions, Comstock is destroyed for good, ensuring their revenge, Jack manages to save the Little Sisters in Rapture in 1960, and, ultimately, both the hyper-nationalist Columbia and the hyper-capitalist Rapture are destroyed.
- Birds of a Feather: Taken to its most absurd conclusion.
- Born Lucky: Rosalind frequently bets against her brother, and loses nearly all of the time.
- By this point, Robert is starting to get annoyed at winning each coin toss.
- Bystander Syndrome: Of a sort. It's revealed that Rosalind originally agreed to work with Comstock for funds and his support for her theories. She couldn't care less for his plans for Columbia and "drowning in flames" the Sodom below; in fact, she privately considers his stint as a prophet an elaborate show. The only bright spot in her life was realizing she had an opposite-gender Alternate Self who was just as smart as she was, and also wanted to explore the possibilities of the Lutece Field. Once they are united in the same universe, Robert arrives with baby Anna, who is raised by Comstock as Elizabeth. Since they are among the very few who know Elizabeth's true origins, Comstock arranges to have them killed, which instead leaves them unstuck in time and space. Robert then decides to undo the entire chain of events leading to him kidnapping Anna for Comstock, forcing Rosalind to go along with him by threatening her with him leaving her reality if she refused.
- Catchphrase: "X? Or Y?" Also, "[Blanks], [blank]ed, will [blank]."
- More specifically:Robert: Lives, lived, will live.
Rosalind: Dies, died, will die.
- Specifically for Robert:
- More specifically:
- Chekhov's Gunman: Their research and exploration into alternate dimensions set the events of the game into motion.
- Chessmasters: They're more or less intangible in their current state. To accomplish Robert's goal of eliminating Comstock (and, later, helping Elizabeth to free the Little Sisters), the pair relies on intermediaries to carry out tasks for them. Sometimes this involves less carrot and a lot more stick.
- Cloudcuckoolanders: They're very... out there.
- Coordinated Clothes: They wear nearly identical outfits.
- Creepy Good: They have no qualms about sacrificing the lives of others in pursuit of a bigger return.
- Creepy Twins: Especially when they're being unhelpful.
- Dead All Along: In a fashion. A Voxophone recording reveals that despite surviving their accident, albeit scattered in time and space, their original bodies did die and leave behind corpses for their funeral photographs to be taken.
- Deadpan Snarkers: Booker even calls them on it at a point late in the game.Booker: Well. They're sarcastic.
- The Dividual: Of the Twindividual sub-type, and taken to the most extreme conclusion possible.
- They remind one of the G-Man's transdimensional shenanigans... though they're not as creepy. They're also a considerably more human version of Dr. Manhattan given their relationship to quantum physics.
- Their role in the story is similar to Tenenbaum's from the first BioShock.
- Two very similar characters that have incomprehensible discussions about improbably-repetitive coin flips and similar shenanigans and are stuck in time? I wonder where I've seen something like that before.
- Everyone Has Standards: In Burial at Sea: Episode Two it is shown that Rosalind in particular absolutely loathes Suchong after finding out his history and experiments and wants nothing to do with him. Robert playfully notes this might be because they're no different in their callous scientific view of the world, much to Rosalind's annoyance.Rosalind: A disagreeable fellow, this Suchong.Robert: That's surprising, I'd imagine he'd be right up your street.Rosalind: Hmph. I feel dirty sharing a universe with the man.Robert: How poorly we see our own traits in others.Rosalind: What do you mean?Robert: You both see the world through a lens of science.Rosalind: And what's wrong with that?Robert: Ask young Ms. Comstock.
- Fashion Dissonance: It's not so obvious but their outfits in 1912 are nigh identical with the flashbacks in 1893, which would make their attire late-Victorian at best. This isn't helped by the fact that both Luteces were presumably killed years before the game takes place.
- The Fatalist: Rosalind, in contrast to Robert's eternal optimist.
- The Ferryman: DeWitt's story is bookended by the Luteces shepherding him to a lighthouse by boat: first to Columbia, and later to his execution at the hands of Elizabeth. This is how Booker perceives the trip between "doors" in the multiverse. Once Elizabeth lost her ability to open Tears, she was forced to charter the Luteces' "boat", as well.
- Finishing Each Other's Sentences: Lampshaded. They concede that while it is indeed weird that they finish each other's sentences, it would be weirder if they didn't.
- For Science!: Their primary reason for randomly popping up to bug Booker when not helping him.
- Friendly Fire Proof: Parodied and Justified. As they are scattered in time and space, you can't hurt them, but if you try they will casually comment. "Missed"
- In fact, they have many hilarious responses after that when trying to shoot them again and again. "you missed", "missed..." (exasperated tone), "missed again", "four out of five?" "another miss..." "... aaaand a miss" "We can afford to do this all day. The only question is, can you?".
- Freak Lab Accident: Technically, it was sabotage intended to kill them and made to look like an accident, but the other particulars of the trope remain the same.
- Gender Bender: They're genderflipped Alternate Self versions of each other.
- Good Is Not Nice: They're the lead suspects in the torture and murder of the lighthouse keeper. He was probably killed to remove an obstacle from Booker's ascent to Columbia, while the implements could have extracted the passcode for the entrance bells.
- Greater-Scope Paragon / Greater-Scope Villain: Columbia only exists because Rosalind was willing to let Comstock exploit her work if it meant she could finally bring Robert into her universe. However, they are ultimately the ones who spend who-knows-how-long bringing several dozen alternate reality Bookers to Columbia in order to save his daughter and fix the mess they started (even if it's more Robert's inclination with Rosalind just going along with it).
- Great Gazoos: Before long, Booker just stops questioning how they keep tailing him, or the source of their reality-bending powers. Though they do have his interests at heart, they treat Booker rather like a toddler who needs constant supervision and scolding.
- Half-Identical Twins: There's a justified reason for that.
- He Knows Too Much: Comstock has Jeremiah Fink sabotage their machines once they, like Lady Comstock, become a liability to him.
- Hot Scientist: Purposely done - their character designer based them on the ideals of commercial beauty at the time — Robert is an Arrow Collar man and Rosalind a Gibson Girl.
- Immune to Bullets: It's impossible to hit them at all. They just repeatedly tell you that you missed, even at point-blank range, or if you just try to hit them with your fists, and subtly make fun of you if you keep trying.
- Incest Subtext: Played with. See Screw Yourself below. It's not explicitly stated, but the tone of some of Rosalind's voxophone recordings can be somewhat... suggestive.Rosalind: Brother, what Comstock failed to understand is that our contraption is a window not into prophecy, but probability. But, his money means the Lutece Field could become the Lutece Tear — a window between worlds. [earnestly] A window through which you and I... might finally be together.
Rosalind: You have been transfused, brother, into a new reality, but your body rejects the cognitive dissonance through confusion and hemorrhage. But we are together, and I will mend you. For what separates us now, but a single chromosome?
- You can explore the Luteces' house later in the game. There is only one bed... and it's a double-sized bed.
- In Burial at Sea: Episode Two one of the audio logs reveals that Robert wants to have children. Rosalind has apparently put a lot of thought into returning to a version of Columbia where they can go back to being ordinary humans and potentially start a family together, but she's hesitant to give up all the knowledge and power they've obtained after becoming Physical Gods. It's implied that this is the reason that Robert decided to attempt to save Elizabeth and Booker, even threatening to leave Rosalind if she didn't participate in the plan.
- At one point, you see the Luteces dancing together.
- Insufferable Genius: Both Luteces, but Rosalind especially. She didn't adjust her manners in the presence of Comstock or his wife, which probably shortened her lifespan.
- It's Up to You: They're having a devil of a time (no pun intended) trying to rub out Comstock in spite of their omniscience. The best they can do is nudge Booker along, forking over vigors and keys when the plot demands it.
- Karma Houdini: So, after essentially causing the entire mess by allowing Comstock to found Columbia and creating Elizabeth, what do they get? Why, all eternity to study The Multiverse in the company of each other, whom they are quite blatantly implied to be in love with. However, see Big Good for why this is somewhat justifiable.
- Leitmotif: The song Lutece always leads to them. Like them, it's quirky, upbeat, surreal, somewhat at odds with everything else, and has an undercurrent of menace and the uncanny.
- Like an Old Married Couple: 90% of their dialogue is idle bickering with each other. Which really doesn't help with the implied Screw Yourself angle, such as having only one bed in their house.
- Living Forever Is Awesome: There are no fatal explosions in Rosalind's world, only happy accidents. In Burial at Sea she drolly comments on Elizabeth's choice to give up immortality and return to Rapture. "You're trading omniscience and croissants for death and mildew?"
- Mad Scientists: It's soon revealed they designed both the technology that keeps Columbia afloat and the first interdimension travel machine. They are also a bit nuts. Rosalind is implied to be the nuttier of the two due to her interest in studying phenomenon over its negative effect on the lives of people.
- Meaningful Name:
- Their last name comes from the French word for the Roman city that became Paris. In a way, Booker did take Elizabeth to Paris as a baby.
- "Rosalind" is the name of the heroine from As You Like It who, like her namesake in BioShock, has a male alter ego. It's actually a very obscure hint as to the true nature of the "twins", as a more initially obvious Shakespeare reference would surely have been to name her "Viola".
- Morality Chain: Apparently, even after Comstock's attempted murder, Rosalind was just fine with letting things stand, having gotten what she wanted, i.e. an eternity to study science with her brother-self. Robert, having seen the natural end of all the Comstock futures (and possibly feeling guilty over the initial abduction of Anna), isn't as copacetic, and actually threatens to leave Rosalind forever unless she helps him fix things. So she plays ball, even if she thinks the whole thing's stupid.Robert: So you expect me to shoulder the burden?
Rosalind: No. But I do expect you to do all the rowing.
- Mother Nature, Father Science: Downplayed and inverted. Rosalind is the cold, intellectual one while Robert is the more emotional and the more morally concerned one, as he's the one that suggested they should fix what they caused.
- Mouth of Sauron: Robert willingly went along with Comstock's kidnapping plot and even acted as his emissary, greeting Booker in the traditional Columbian manner and promising that Father Comstock "has absolved" him of his sins. At the time, Comstock still resembled Booker in appearance and couldn't pitch the sale of Anna in-person.
- Mysterious Backer: The ones that hired Booker and put the whole game into motion.
- Narcissist: Given that they're technically alternate versions of each other, they take this to an uncomfortable level.
- Never My Fault: Zig-zagged. Rosalind cares absolutely nothing for the fact that she is to blame for the rise of Comstock and Columbia, but Robert recognizes his guilt in the matter and is determined to make amends for it.
- Non-Linear Character: Due to being scattered across space and time, the Luteces can see the past, present, and future all at once. A good many of their personality quirks and supernatural abilities are derived from the fact that they can see all possibly realities.
- Offscreen Teleportation: The two tend to pop in and out all over Columbia offering random choices to Booker and Elizabeth — none of which change the eventual outcome.
- The Omnipresent: They were scattered across space-time by their accident, gaining the ability to appear wherever they wished. The metaphysics can be studied for ages, which is a good thing, because they aren't going anywhere soon... Although the whole experience makes poor Robert's head spin ("Had to have had been?" "I don't think the syntax has been invented yet.")
- Opposites Attract: Despire being Birds of a Feather, there are subtle differences in their personalities; Rosalind is more serious, while Robert is more of a goofball. Not to mention that, as Rosalind puts it, where she sees King Lear, Robert sees only a blank page — she is a fatalist, while Robert is more optimistic. Rosalind is far more intellectual and dispassionate, while Robert is more moral and idealistic.
- Other Me Annoys Me: Ultimately Averted: their frequent squabbles amount to nothing more than some friendly Sibling Rivalry to pass the time, and it's clear that they're actually very fond of each other.
- Physical God: A freak accident with Rosalind's dimension-bending machine made them able to bend the world to their liking, which explains how they repeatedly show up in random places doing strange things and how they can't be shot, even at point-blank range.
- The Power of Rock: Rosalind was able to cure Robert's reconciliation sickness with the help of music to calm his nerves.
- Quantum Mechanics Can Do Anything: Their combined research has allowed them to not only traverse alternate dimensions but also bend the laws of physics to their will, hence why Columbia manages to float at all. This also extends to surviving their own deaths, allowing them to exist across all time and space. Which would also explain why it's impossible to shoot them. The latter case is probably an instance of the quantum immortality thought experiment come true.
- A Real Man Is a Killer: Burial At Sea: Episode Two reveals that they manipulated the entire situation that lead to Elizabeth killing Daisy, believing this was the only way she'd have enough strength to bring down Comstock.
- Red Herring Shirt: These people turn out to have a lot more involvement in the plot than they initially let on.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Robert is the playful, optimistic, conscientious Red to Rosalind's stoical, fatalistic, and sometimes quite ruthless Blue.
- Though, notably, Rosalind has the general contentedness with their lot in life usually associated with the Red, while Robert's desire to see changes in their situation is more in line with the Blue way of thinking.
- Science Foils: The Lutece twins are both brilliant quantum physicists, but Rosalind is driven and creative in her research, while Robert is more cautious and mindful of the implications of their work.
- Screw Yourself: As noted in Incest Subtext above their relationship is vaguely romantic. However, as they aren't actually siblings, rather, alternate versions of eachother, they are this trope rather than Incest Subtext.
- A Shared Suffering: Implied at the end to be partially why Robert is more sympathetic to Booker's plight than Rosalind, as he experienced firsthand the painful physical and psychological trauma that comes with jumping between realities.
- Sibling Rivalry: The source of their many minor squabbles.
- Spock Speak: Rosalind in particular; just listen to her Voxophone recordings.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Sometimes they don't even bother waiting for you to turn your back before they just vanish into thin air. Especially after it's revealed that actually they're omnipresent across the multiverse.
- The Stoic: Rosalind's Voxophone recordings and the conversation between her and Lady Comstock overheard through a Tear are invariably spoken in calm and indifferent tone, even when she's discussing something as presumably emotive as her ongoing attempts to cure Robert as he's dying of reconciliation sickness or, later, when he's seriously threatening to leave her; or Lady Comstock screamingly accusing her of being a "whore" and Comstock's mistress.
- This is one of the few traits that the Lutece twins do not remotely share: Robert definitely loses his composure a couple of times, notably when he's so afraid to cross through the first Tear to join Rosalind that he seems about to back out of the whole thing.
- Though even Rosalind is noticeably panicked in Burial at Sea: Episode 1 when she realises that the Tear is about to cut off Baby Anna's head.
- Teen Genius: They appear to be in their mid-thirties at the oldest at their technical time of death in 1909, meaning that they must have been in their late teens when they wrote Barriers to Trans-Dimensional Travel and created the Lutece Tear in 1893.
- Though Older Than They Look might be in effect, since they're Physical Gods. Comstock's premature ageing after too much messing with the Tear certainly seems to imply that physical signs of ageing, or lack thereof, might not mean much with people who've spent a lot of time hopping universes. Certainly, the Lutece twins don't appear to have aged in all that time, and the versions Booker meets in the 1893 flashback don't look or act like teenagers, but appear exactly as they do in 1912.
- Those Two Guys: As with many of their associated tropes, it's played to the extreme: the revelation that they were scattered across time and space by their accident means that they quite possibly literally can't operate independently even if they want to (though they clearly don't anyway).
- Time-Travel Tense Trouble: They complain that the English language doesn't have a tense to describe what they've seen. Robert, in particular, becomes obsessed with trying out weird tenses to explain his point of view in the second half of the game.
- Troll: Most of their interaction with Booker that's not helpful, consists of them showing up to irritate him. A Voxophone recording similarly reveals that several days after their supposed death, they took the opportunity to show up and criticize the (terrified) photographer Rupert Cunningham of their funeral photographs for making them look "too lifeless".
- Understatement:"Frankly, she doesn't seem all that cooperative."
- Unexpected Character: At the end of Episode One of Burial at Sea, with zero foreshadowing.
- The Unfought: Their distinctly unhelpful advice and the way they treat Booker are vaguely reminiscent of Fontaine/Atlas's manipulation, so one can be forgiven for thinking they would betray Booker.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Despite appearing at the tail end of Burial at Sea: Episode One, they are shockingly missing during Episode Two (save for a cameo midway through). What makes this even more baffling is the fact that had they just given Elizabeth a heads up that the Big Daddy was about to turn on her, she could've potentially avoided everything negative that happened to her throughout the course of the second half of the DLC.
- Women Are Wiser: While they're equally brilliant, Rosalind seems to be the more mature. Exemplified by one scene early in the game, where the two of them can clearly be seen through the binoculars across from Monument Island: Robert is juggling while Rosalind looks on disapprovingly.
- Ultimately subverted when it's revealed that while Rosalind might be the wiser of the two, Robert apparently holds himself to a higher moral standard, expressing both compassion and regret for Booker and Elizabeth's situation and the role that they had played in it. Robert was also the one who decided that Comstock had to be stopped, even threatening to leave Rosalind if she refused to help.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: The Luteces were this for the Founders. Once Comstock had all he needed from them and was taking steps to conceal Elizabeth's true origins, he had Fink arrange for the pair to be offed in an unfortunate experimental "accident." It didn't exactly work as planned.
Preston E. Downs
A bounty hunter who is employed by the Founders to track down Daisy Fitzroy. He never actually appears in the game, but multiple audio diaries by him can be found, which show his gradual shift from being a bounty hunter for Comstock to a member of the Vox. A model of him is also quite obviously used for Fink's head of security.
- The Atoner: Becomes this while hunting Fitzroy.
- Boom, Headshot!: Apparently happens to him after he joins the Vox Populi in the second world Booker and Elizabeth go to, according to the wall of targets in the police station in Shantytown.
- Bounty Hunter: His trade and craft. At least, in most realities...
- Even Evil Has Standards:
- He set bear traps for Daisy Fitzroy's messengers, with the intention of catching them and interrogating them for information regarding her whereabouts. It worked, as he then discovered that Daisy was using children as messengers, which resulted in a young Native American orphan being mangled by his trap. After being forced to amputate the boy's leg, he takes on the responsibility of taking care of the child. Later on, he's sent to hunt down (alternate universe) Booker DeWitt, who turns out to be fluent in Sioux, the same native tongue as his ward. He then makes a HeelFace Turn after learning why the boy is an orphan and why he is working for the Vox Populi.
- Great White Hunter: He even makes a habit of scalping his targets. In the case of Comstock, he states that he'll give the boy the honors.
- HeelFace Turn: Depends on one's viewpoint. It matters little, though.
- Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: He explicitly compares hunting people to hunting animals.
- Morality Pet: A Native American boy whose leg gets caught in one of his bear traps.
- My God, What Have I Done?: When he accidentally cripples a child with one of his efforts to hunt down Daisy.
- Psycho for Hire: At first.
- The Unfought: Not any sign of him in the flesh is ever encountered in the game, though an alternate Booker does meet him at some point.
- Voiced by: Richard Herd
A blind old preacher in charge of baptism for those entering Columbia.
- Forgotten First Meeting: As it turns out, Booker and Witting previously met 20 years ago when the latter offered to baptize Booker and wash away his sins. Neither of them recognize the other when they meet again though Witting at least has the excuse of being blind.
- For Want of a Nail: If he hadn't baptized Booker DeWitt, Comstock and thus pretty much the entire game would have never happened.
- Ironic Name: He pretty much unwittingly kickstarted the entire plot of the game.
- Large Ham: His sermons are very enthusiastic.
- Preacher Man: His role in Columbia. In a slight twist, he seems to be more devoted to Comstock than to God.
- Prophet Eyes: His blindness isn't clear from his movements, but his eyes have thick cataracts. It is unknown if he was born blind or if he lost his vision later in life. This also explains why he doesn't recognize Booker as the man he baptized in the past.
- Small Role, Big Impact: This minor preacher Booker met when he first enters Columbia is later revealed to play a role in the rise of Zachary Comstock by baptizing a shell-shocked Wounded Knee soldier and rechristened him into a self proclaimed prophet.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Despite his name, he assuredly had no idea that giving a troubled young soldier a baptism would lead to Comstock's rise to power.
Dimwit & Duke
Two mascots for "proper" Columbian children behavior; Duke represents the good and proper way to do things, Dimwit represents how not to do things. Their images appear all over Soldier's Field, with a toy line, voxophone players, and live stage performances.
- The Ace: Duke.
- Big Eater: In the ice-cream parlor, Duke is advertising the 5-cent "Patriotic Duty" special—one scoop each of strawberry, vanilla, and what looks like blueberry.
- By contrast, Picky Eater Dimwit's special is a single scoop of "Lazy Lemon."
- Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: The narrations shown in the game go over Stranger Danger, standing for the national anthem... and gun maintenance.
- Butt-Monkey: Dimwit.
- Catchphrase: Their voxophones all begin with "Are you a Duke? ...or a Dimwit?" and end with "Remember, boys and girls: Dont. Be. A Dimwit!"
- Cowardly Lion: Dimwit.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: Implied to be the case with Dimwit. One store clerk offhandedly mentions they have trouble keeping Dimwit merch in stock. Which means people love Dimwit not despite, but because of his flaws... or parents have very low opinions of their children.
- Hollywood Homely: Invoked, In-Universe. Dimwit with his mussed hair, big nose, big teeth, and unkempt uniform is meant to be seen as this by the Columbian kids.
- Homage: To Goofus and Gallant from Highlights children's magazine.
- Ryan the Lion and Peter the Parasite in Burial At Sea are ones of them.
- Inside Joke: The "Fearless Flintlock" voxophone was delayed three times. Just like Infinite.
- Leitmotif: In the voxophone recordings, Duke has a light piano flourish, while Dimwit has a sour, mash-the-keys-with-your-hand sounding note.
- The Merch: In-Universe. And it's all over the place.
- Patriotic Fervor: Meant to instill this in Columbian children.
- Professional Butt-Kisser: Duke is depicted as being the typical goody-two-shoes with a borderline sycophantic devotion to Columbia's authority figures (behavior those same authority figures clearly want to instill in the children watching.)
- Right Way/Wrong Way Pair: They provide the page image, but are a very warped example; the two serve as an effective means of propaganda for Columbia's children, instilling in them the strict conformity, obsessive patriotism, and blind deference to authority that has become standard practice among the city's residents. Just listen to the narrations to their shows:Narrator: "When Duke sees a suspicious-looking character, he reports him to his authorities straight away. When Dimwit sees a suspicious-looking character, he ignores him, and focuses on his new scooter."Narrator: "When Duke hears the Columbian Anthem, he stands at attention and sings along, proud and clear. When Dimwit hears the Columbian Anthem, he just says... 'That song again? I'm too tired to sing!'"Narrator: "Duke cleans his father's rifle every Sunday without being asked. Dimwit shoots mice every afternoon and puts the old man's rifle back dirty."
- Too Incompetent to Operate a Blanket: Statues of Dimwit show him doused in ice-cream and holding his rifle backwards (it's a pop gun, but still)
- Too Smart for Strangers: One public announcement encourages children to report suspicious strangers. Given that the authorities are militarized police armed with advanced lethal weapons...
- Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: Dimwit is said to have a fondness for shooting mice, which is a telltale sign of mental issues in children. Notice that the narrator doesn't have an issue with this, but does take offense to Dimwit refusing to clean the rifle afterward as per his father's orders.
- Voiced by: Courtnee Draper
Sally is an orphan living in Rapture. Following the closure of Fontaine Futuristics, she is adopted by the Booker DeWitt of that universe. Booker lost her at one point and spent a long time trying to find her until Elizabeth approaches him with a lead on her possible location.
- And Then John Was a Zombie: After her disappearance, Sally has been turned into a Little Sister by Suchong.
- Creepy Child: Once it is revealed that she had been turned into a Little Sister.
- Creepy Doll: Her doll, Sarah, is missing its head, a reference to how Anna DeWitt was killed in Comstock's original timeline. By the time she is rescued by Jack, it has been repaired. Interestingly, Sarah greatly resembles Elizabeth when Booker first met her at Columbia.
- Died in Your Arms Tonight: As Elizabeth is dying, Sally holds her hand while singing "La Vie En Rose."
- Earn Your Happy Ending: Elizabeth foresees that Sally will be eventually saved by Jack and cured of her conditioning in the Good Ending of the original BioShock.
- Happily Adopted: She was initially adopted by Booker before he loses her. Some time later, she is rescued by Jack and becomes one of the Little Sisters adopted by him.
- Improbable Infant Survival: Booker almost burns her alive in order to get her out of the vents. Later, Atlas attempts to extract the ADAM inside her only for Elizabeth to convince her to spare him. Atlas also attempted to perform a transorbital lobotomy in order to get Elizabeth to tell him the location of the "Ace in the Hole".
- Missing Child: Booker lost her while he was at the casino and spent days searching for her only to be told by Sullivan that she was dead. Upon finding out she's at Fontaine's Department Store, Booker continues to look for her only for her to be turned into a Little Sister. In the second chapter of the DLC, it's Elizabeth's turn to look out for her after she is kidnapped by Atlas.
- Replacement Goldfish: It becomes clear that Booker sees her as a replacement for Anna, after accidentally killing the infant in his original timeline when he was still Comstock.
- She Is All Grown Up: A woman implying to be Sally appears in Fact From Myth is interviewed by the show regarding the existence of Rapture. When she is shown pictures of items from the city, she becomes horrified when she sees a painting of Elizabeth and Booker dancing and quickly locked herself in her house.
- Small Role, Big Impact: It's her kidnapping that sets the gears in motion for Jack of the first Bioshock to come to Rapture and finally put an end to Ryan and Fontaine's tyranny since Elizabeth has a crisis of conscience for using Sally in her scheme to kill the alternate Comstock and returns to that timeline to save her, in turn giving Fontaine what he needs to summon and control Jack and the entirety of the events of the first Bioshock. If Elizabeth's dying words are any indication, Jack ultimately saves Sally and the Little Sisters there as well.
Johnny Law is the first of the hostiles you'll encounter. They carry truncheons, pistols, or even Sky-Hooks. Interestingly for Columbia's gender dynamics, many of them are female and many of the female officers are highly ranked and obeyed without question.—-
- The Goomba: Theyre the first enemies you fight and are the easiest to take down.
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: The primary means of extracting information from suspects or witnesses is inflicting a lot of pain. In the game, you encounter at least one man they tortured to death and another effectively comatose from trauma in their cells.
- Killer Cop: They show absolutely zero hesitation in executing suspects.
- Old-Fashioned Copper: It's nineteen-twelve. They aren't enlightened.
- Police Brutality: Self-evident. These guys enforce Columbia's law with all the fervor of the most zealous patriots and religious fanatics combined, and with just as much violence.
- Rabid Cop: They certainly do a whole lot of yelling.
- Starter Villain: As a group; They are only fought in the Raffle Square before vanishing and being replaced by soldiers. That is, unless you decide to steal stuff in Soldier's Field or the Finkton Docks.
The most common foe you'll face. Many of them are from the Founders' army, but others are disenfranchised troops led by Cornelius Slate, and still others are militant rebels of the Vox Populi.
- Cheap Costume: The Vox melee units go into battle in their working clothes and sometimes wear makeshift face masks.
- Cold Sniper: The Founder-loyal ones only. Vox Populi ones love to scream and yell at you.
- Color-Coded Armies: In contrast to the Founders' blue, the primary color of the Vox Populi is red.
- Cool Mask: Unlike the Splicers in Rapture, who wear masks to hide their deformities, the soldiers sometimes wear masks to intimidate opponents.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: Many of the militants' outfits are asymmetrical, with ammo packs and belts on different parts of their uniforms.
- Goggles Do Nothing: The male soldiers wear stylish goggles just as part of their headgear.
- Heavily Armored Mook: Toward the end of the game, the soldiers start wearing bulky leather armor, allowing them to take much more damage.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: Averted. Snipers usually fight from only a reasonable distance away. Logical given Columbia is mostly winding streets and courtyards, so there's not much room for mile-away marksmanship.
- In the Hood: Certain Vox militants wear hoods with "devil horns".
- Intentional Engrish for Funny: Vox snipers have thick accents and tend to mangle their sentences a bit.Vox Sniper: I kill you now!
- No Indoor Voice: Will loudly shout random Bible quotes during battle.
- Old Soldier: Slate's disenfranchised troops. They still remain loyal to him after forty years.
- Pipe Pain: The melee units affiliated with the Vox carry what look like rusted metal pipe fragments.
- Skewed Priorities: It is shown that will stop fighting Booker and pray when ordered to by Comstock; even if Booker starts killing them they will not stop praying.
- Sniper Duel: Pretty much every area occupied by them will have a sniper rifle stashed somewhere nearby so Booker can duel them.
- Unique Enemy: The very first Sniper encountered in the game is one of Slate's troops.
- Wearing a Flag on Your Head: Uniforms in white and blue, of course, and the higher-level female cops actually go into firefights dressed as Lady Liberty, spiked metallic mask and all.
- Airborne Mook: The Mosquitoes, which are essentially gatling guns hoisted on balloons. You run into these late in the game.
- Bottomless Magazines: They never seem to run out of ammo.
- Mecha-Mooks: They're generally a bit more durable than human enemies, but for the most part are stationary aside from the Mosquitoes, so you can usually hide from them and fire from cover.
- More Dakka: The Machine Gun Automatons will just keep on firing upon you. So will those pesky Mosquitoes.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: The spotlight turns from yellow to red when they spot you. Their lights turn green when you possess them.
- Steampunk: You can see it clearly. Very clearly. The Machine Gun Automatons have World War I era helmets, while the Rocket Automatons sport Civil War kepis.
- Those Magnificent Flying Machines: The Mosquitoes are flying turrets suspended by balloons.
- Armor Is Useless: Sure, they wear bulky blast armor. But it can so easily be shot off.
- Cloudcuckoolanders: They, like the soldiers, will shout random Bible quotes during battle.
- Cool Guns: They carry a Pig Flak, Hail Fire, or Barnstormer.
- Cool Helmet: Some of the Founder Beasts have golden lion helmets, while Vox Beasts wear helmets in the shape of bull heads.
- Heavily Armored Mook: Their armor allows them to take much more damage than regular soldiers.
- Mighty Glacier: It takes some effort to bring them down... unless you use Possession on them.
- Super Soldier: They are tougher and have more hit points than normal soldiers.
- Unique Enemy: The very first Beast you see wears the same uniform as Slate's troops.
- "BURN IN THE NAME OF OUR PROPHET!"
Heavily-armored members of Columbia's military. Equipped with the Devil's Kiss Vigor, they are often sent into situations that ordinary police officers or soldiers cannot handle alone.
- The Atoner: According to the player's guide, Firemen are actually former Columbian criminals who've been captured by the Founders and sealed into iron maiden-like suits that constantly burn them, before being equipped with Devil's Kiss and put to work as shock troopers. Their dialogue suggests that they honestly believe they're repenting for their "sins", and that their fiery attacks are infernal judgment meted out against the enemies of the Prophet.
- Ax-Crazy: YOUR FLESH WILL BLACKEN AND CHAAARRRR! They have a tendency to spout many fire related threats, and sometimes even shout nonsense that has nothing to to do with the situation at hand.
- Clingy Costume: They have been sealed into those suits. Their exact appearance underneath is unknown, but it's implied that the suit helps keep them alive.
- Degraded Boss: Initially, the Fireman is encountered as a boss — or at the very least, a miniboss. As the game goes on, however, Firemen are frequently encountered as high-class mooks.
- Elite Mooks: After being degraded.
- Large Ham: Firemen are very shouty. Just listen.
- No-Sell: Predictably, they are immune to Devil's Kiss.
- One-Way Visor: Presumably they can see out, but from the outside it looks mirrored. This is Truth in Television with welding masks. The mask is very reflective so the sparks from welding don't blind the welder with light alone.
- Playing with Fire: Hurling fireballs, using an AOE fireburst attack, and then potentially exploding when they die.
- Pyromaniac: Implied, given that they're very enthusiastic about seeing Booker "BURN IN HELL!"
- Reformed Criminal: In a twisted way — they're only "reformed" in the sense that they're now serving Comstock instead of defying him. Once the Vox uprising is in full swing, they appear to be more commonly aligned with the rebel forces than with the Columbian military and police.
- Superpowered Mooks: Amped up by the Devil's Kiss Vigor.
- Taking You with Me: A critically-damaged Fireman will activate a self-destruct and charge in your general direction. Pretty painful if it connects, but they only have a few seconds to reach you and tend to be easily outwitted by using environmental cover or Vigors to stall them. They also detonate prematurely if you damage them enough.
- Tragic Monster: Some of their non-combat lines include "Let me out, it burns, it burns!" and "There's no forgiveness without sacrifice!" Sometimes they sound pained and exhausted even if uninjured. So... what kind of effect has constantly being steeped in Vigors had upon them?
Zealots of the Lady
- "No rest! No rest until the Lady's killer is in chains!"
Elite members of the Fraternal Order of the Raven, the Zealots of the Lady and their underlings are a religious movement that demonize Abraham Lincoln for his role in ending slavery in America and venerate his assassin, John Wilkes Booth, as a saint. While she was alive, they also worshipped Lady Comstock, hence their name; they blame themselves for failing to prevent her untimely death, and have sworn to vanquish the enemies of Columbia in their Lady's name. Furthermore, their devotion to blackbirds has led them to adopt the Murder of Crows Vigor as their weapon of choice, making the cultists challenging foes. Up close, they wield deadly swords to supplement their Vigor powers.
- The Atoner: How they view themselves. They've taken the death of the Lady Comstock personally, lashing large coffins to their backs and vowing not to rest until "the Lady's killer is in chains". Enemy chatter indicates that this vow is wearing on their already tenuous sanity."Pardon me Lady, please? [sobbing] Take this weight off my back, because I cannot bear it."
"Come back! Don't let me fail Her again!"
- Ax-Crazy: They're quite clearly mad, carrying around coffins and occasionally talking to the late Lady Comstock.
- Close-Range Combatant: They have no ranged attacks, but can easily approach you using Murder of Crows.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Apparently, the Order keeps around prisoners for exactly this reason.
- Creepy Crows: Quite so. They utilize the Murder of Crows Vigor, dress in black, and are perpetually surrounded by flocks of crows. Even their meeting hall is infested with birds; nests in their statues, straw all over the place, and a lavish feast laid out and left to rot presumably to attract them. They don't even seem to bother cleaning up the mess the crows leave everywhere.
- Death of a Thousand Cuts: They're first introduced by one of their number using his Vigor to execute a Chinese captive in this way.
- Degraded Boss: At first, the only one encountered is the head of the Lodge, and is officially a boss; then, as Booker continues across Columbia and the other dimensions that contain it, he starts meeting them as mooks.
- Elite Mooks: After becoming a Degraded Boss. By the end of the game they show up with no fanfare.
- Expy: Imagine a Houdini Splicer with Insect Swarm instead of Incinerate!; dressed in a Black Cloak and spouting Religious Horror instead of a more personal brand of crazy nonsense.
- Heel Realization: Vox-aligned Zealots seem to have discovered they had been deceived by Comstock and are eager to make him and the Founders pay for it.
- The Klan: Strongly reminiscent of them, particularly with their hooded uniforms.
- Malevolent Masked Men: Yep, they unquestionably are.
- Mark of Shame: The Zealots have a clothing-based version of this in the form of the large wooden coffins they have chained to their backs, as a reminder of their failure to protect Lady Comstock."We wear our shame as a weight on our back. Lady, forgive those who deserve not your forgiveness."
- No-Sell: They are immune to Murder of Crows, since they make use of it themselves.
- Politically Incorrect Villain: The Fraternal Order of the Raven takes this to an extreme — they're a turbo-charged, super-powered, government-sanctioned Ku Klux Klan.
- Religion of Evil: More of a cult; as a crazier version of the KKK, it fits. They do seem to portray John Wilkes Booth as a saint, after all.
- Secret Circle of Secrets: Fittingly, since they are the Klan Columbia-style.
- Superpowered Mooks: They can dissolve into a flock of crows to flit from place to place in a manner reminiscent of Houdini Splicers.
- Teleport Spam: Can teleport in and out of combat in the form of a Murder.
- Unique Enemy: There is only one Zealot in the whole game (wearing a unique red outfit) who fights for the Vox Populi, and a couple (wearing soldiers' uniforms) who fight for Slate's soldiers; the others all work for the Founders.
- Voice of the Legion: Zealots speak in strange, echoing voices. It's unclear whether it's caused by their masks or if it's some sort of side effect of their Vigor use.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting/The Worm That Walks: Each of them possess the ability to transform themselves into a flock of crows, which they often use in order to escape being injured in combat.
- You Can Run, but You Can't Hide: Much like the Wader Splicers in the first game, they have several quotes to this effect."You won't hide long from her! She knows no blindness!"
"I don't see you, but she does! She does!"
"I can't hide, and neither can you!"
- "The Lord judges. I act."
A "Heavy Hitter" enemy that resembles a clockwork president. Originally designed as tour guides, they were given ridiculously unnecessary amounts of armor and firepower to help combat foreign spies, and now serve as mobile tanks.
- American Robot: Animatronic versions of famous U.S. presidents who blare anthems, spout slogans, mount stars and stripes flags, and wield Peppermills.
- Attack Its Weak Point: The gears on their backs are their primary vulnerability, though head shots will do in a pinch until you've completely blown it off. They won't be dead, but pretty close.
- Though it's resistant to stunning, like all Heavy Hitters, damage from the Shock Jockey Vigor will ignore its armor and so can bring it down swiftly, especially if combined with burst weapons like the Shotgun and Machine Gun. If nothing else, the Shock Jockey will stun them just like every other enemy you use it on, giving you time to circle behind them to shoot them in the back.
- Clockwork Creature: They are composed of basic clockwork mechanisms — wires, gears, and a basic frame.
- Cloudcuckoolanders: They are constantly spouting non-sequiturs.
- Degraded Boss: The first time you encounter it, it's a lone boss match. It's extremely tough, it has a dynamic entry... and ten minutes later, you're fighting another one with a horde of soldiers. By the end of the game you're fighting two at once every few minutes.
- Evil Is Hammy: Their dialogue in general seems to be this way.
- Gatling Good: Wield deadly Peppermill Crank Guns.
- Giant Mook: They're almost twice as tall as a normal man and behave the most like a "standard" FPS Giant Mook out of any enemy in the series; they can take a lot of bullets, are equipped with a minigun-like weapon, and slowly walk relentlessly towards you while firing.
- Hazy Feel Turn: Regardless of whether a Patriot represents Founders or Vox, they have the same voice blaring from their speakers. Presumably, the man who recorded those messages switched sides.
- Horned Humanoid: The Vox version is based off the Order of the Raven's portrayal of Lincoln, which includes Devil horns.
- Implacable Man: Ken Levine has said that what makes these such dangerous enemies is that they have no sense of self-preservation and simply march forward through any damage and danger to focus relentlessly on attacking the player.
- Job-Stealing Robot: Slate doesn't think very highly of his replacements. The Patriots are called in as strike-breakers (of sorts) when the veterans go rogue.
- Large Ham/No Indoor Voice: They spout loud, bombastic propaganda in the middle of combat, whether dealing or taking damage.
- Lightning Bruiser: Patriots march forward at a steady pace, pumping bullets into their foes with deadly precision... until you manage to keep out of their line of sight long enough. Then watch those things double in speed and smack you with their guns before you know what's hit you.
- Losing Your Head: Their heads pop off if you shoot it enough times. However, unless their health is completely depleted, it doesn't stop them from continuing to attack you, though their accuracy does seem to suffer a little from it.
- Malevolent Masked Men: Masked robots, anyway, all wearing porcelain faces of old presidents; except for the ones on the Hand of the Prophet, who wear Comstock masks.
- Mecha-Mooks: They are entirely robotic and never waver from their pursuit.
- Patriotic Fervor: Built for it and noisy about it.
- Propaganda Machine: A literal one, embodying all of Columbia's values: cacophonic jingoism, raw militarism, and historical white-washing (pun intended).
- Robot Me: In the "Vox have guns already" Columbia, Comstock uses versions modeled after himself. Other versions are modelled after George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.
- Super-Powered Robot Meter Maids: They were originally used as tour guides: why would they need to be strong enough to carry a BFG? Since Columbia is paranoid about foreigners, they might be used to summarily execute any spies who've come under the guise of tourists.
- Uncanny Valley: Intentionally so on the part of the game's artists. The rigid painted George Washington mask on the mechanical frame really sells it.
- "I miss my old body! It was so... so warm! "
Handymen are primitive cyborgs employed in Columbia as brute labor. They are created from the merging of a crude exoskeleton (with the proportions of an ape) and human bodies, most of them unwilling. Due to the imperfect nature of the process, most "Handymen" have lost their sanity and are in constant pain.
- Advertised Extra: They appeared prominently in almost every preview and trailer, and were billed as this game's equivalent to the Big Daddies. Booker fights four in total, and they have as much relevance to the overall plot as any of the other re-occurring enemies.
- And I Must Scream: Unable to sleep, suffering from constant pain and barely sane — all things considered, these guys were probably better off sickly and crippled...
- Apologetic Attacker: If you listen carefully, you'll realize that quite a few of their combat "taunts" aren't actually taunts at all. They're shouting at you to run away so they won't be forced to hurt you in the incoming berserk rage. And when they electrify the Sky-Lines, they'll preface it with "GET DOWN!" or "GET OFF THAT THING!", as a warning that if you don't let go, things will very shortly suck. Further emphasized by the fact that, in the Bad Future version of Columbia, a photograph of a Handyman has been added to a bulletin board of known sinners — the "sin" in question being pacifism.
- Attack Its Weak Point: A glaringly obvious one in the form of their still beating hearts on display in the front of their bodies. Justified by the fact that they were designed for labor, not combat — they might even have been intended to be easy to shut down in case they ever get out of control.
- Bald of Evil: Since no Handyman is shown with hair, presumably it's part of the transformation process. It doesn't help that it's stated most Handymen are to be made out of the physically infirm or terminally ill.
- Body Horror: A majority of their dialogue is them cursing Comstock for what he did to them, screaming about how their transformation has them in constant pain and demanding their original bodies back.
- Cheap Costume: Handymen loyal to Vox Populi go into battle wearing only strips of red cloth wrapped around their torso and face.
- Clothing Damage: Non-fanservice example; the Founder Handymen apparently were once dressed in formal-looking jackets and trousers, but thanks to the exertions of their work, their uniforms have been worn down to rags.
- Covered with Scars: What parts of them remain flesh are, at any rate.
- Cyborg: Steampunk ones.
- Early-Bird Cameo: The very first trailer for Infinite featured the viewpoint character being attacked by a Handyman.
- Elite Mooks: Without a doubt, they are among the toughest enemies you'll face.
- Foe-Tossing Charge: One of their primary attacks. They can leap very far as well.
- Giant Mook: They don't start out small, but they get progressively bigger until they challenge Songbird for position of Largest Enemy in the Game.
- Grievous Harm with a Body: Capable of picking up and throwing both friends and foes.
- Human Resources: The basic principle behind the Handyman? Take a sick, possibly dying person and cram them into a crude augmentic exoskeleton to keep them working. Worse, there's a rare quote from Vox Handymen that makes it clear that Comstock and Fink are willing to make Handymen out of perfectly healthy people if they think there's a need for them.:Comstock took my body away... wasn't even sick!
- Incurable Cough of Death: Sometimes after exerting themselves, they will stop and cough violently, pausing from their otherwise rapid rate of movement. Given many of them are implied to have been sick patients before being made into Handymen, this may be related to that, or difficulty getting enough oxygenation in their artificial bodies. This is the point at which they are most vulnerable to careful shots from the player.
- Kill It with Water: Though they're resistant to Shock Jockey, perhaps due to being powered by it, this means that the basic water blast attack of Undertow will temporarily paralyze them, giving you a better chance to land a heart-shot.
- Lightning Bruiser: The Handymen are terrifyingly fast and agile for their size. Their suits also give them Shock and Awe. And even if you attack their weakpoint, they can still take considerably more damage than most other enemies.
- No-Sell: They are immune to the effects of Possession.
- The Quiet One: Handymen can talk, it's just that not many of them are in the mood to do so outside of combat.
- Shock and Awe: Can use their suits to manipulate electricity, throwing balls of it at Booker and electrifying Sky-Lines.
- Shrinking Violet: The first Handyman encountered in the game is clearly an example; exhibited at the fairgrounds before a sizable audience and at least one photojournalist, he is seen hiding his face with his hands and flinching at the camera flashes.
- Superpowered Mooks: Powered by Shock Jockey, capable of using it, and partially resistant to it as well.
- Uncanny Valley: Their massive hands are deliberately modeled after porcelain dolls of the era. And their feet are fashioned like hob-nailed boots (with some bent nails hanging out).
- Unique Enemy: Only one Vox Handyman is encountered in the game, in the Factory.
- Unstoppable Rage: Thanks to their current condition, the Handymen are often overcome with fits of berserk rage — combat being a very easy way to ensure a rampage.
- Was Once a Man: Ken Levine hints that there is something very sad as to why they are in mechanical bodies. The posters of their transformation at the 1912 Columbia Fair showing a bedridden and ill man in the "before" image hints at what this might be.
- When you reach Columbia's shipping district, you can find a Voxophone with a recording by a working-class woman that says her husband was dying of stomach cancer, and she permitted him to be turned into a Handyman because that's still better than him being dead. A Voxophone located in Fink's Handyman construction area in Burial at Sea: Episode Two (in a room filled with sickbeds) confirms that every Handyman you see in the game is what's left of a terminally ill workman in Fink's employ.
- We Can Rebuild Him: Most of the Handymen-to-be were disabled or in a critical condition around the time they were modified, and the adverts still emphasize the "rebuilding" aspect of the process. Of course, none of them mention the obvious problems in it.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: The poor guys are in constant pain from the sensory overload they are subject to, clearly want to be left alone, and unlike the Big Daddies of Rapture, who have Little Sisters to love, they have no one. Late in the game you can find a group of Vox soldiers standing around a just-killed Handyman taking their picture with it like big-game hunters. That anecdote under Was Once a Man about the woman whose husband was terminally ill? The dead Handyman is clutching another Voxophone to his chest, this one of that same woman saying how proud she was to be his wife.
Boys of Silence
The mysterious (and creepy) guards of Comstock House. If they detect an intruder, they raise the alarm and cause all nearby enemies to attack you.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Not quite to the same extent as the inmates of Comstock house, however.
- Child Soldier: Implied. Given that their school uniform-like outfits appear to be a few sizes too small for them, the Boys were likely recruited, trained and conditioned when they were children.
- Demoted to Extra: The featured Heavy Hitters trailer implied they'd be scattered throughout the game on the streets of Columbia. Instead, they only appear in one level towards the end of the game; you only encounter about five. It was also implied you could kill them if you were stealthy enough, but in the final version, hitting them just alerts them to your presence before they vanish.
- Enemy Summoner: When he detects you he calls in enemies to fight you.
- Eyeless Face: The helmets have giant ear horns and no visible eyes. Yet, the Boys of Silence use a light to spot any intruders.
- The Faceless: Via wearing a large, all-enclosing helmet which never comes off. The helmet is attached to a leather shoulder strap with metal clamps and padlocked shut. Word of God is that the mystery of what was underneath was what helped sell the idea as being really creepy.
- Future Shadowing: Their headgear can be found in Fink's Handyman construction area in Burial at Sea: Episode Two.
- Ironic Nursery Rhyme: Inspired one about them:"Watch where you step! Don't say a word!
You'll be in trouble if the Boys have heard!"
- Jump Scare: Right after you open the gate to Elizabeth's room in the security hall, you turn around to find one standing right behind you. He is immediately set off.
- Make Me Wanna Shout: To summon other enemies. When they detect you, they emit a piercing shriek that alerts anyone around to your presence.
- Patrolling Mook: This disturbing enemy scans the surrounding area for any intruders. If a Boy of Silence detects you, he will call in other opponents to attack you.
- Reality Warper: Able to pull in minions from other dimensions via Tears.
- Villain Teleportation: The Boys of Silence have a limited ability to open Tears of their own, allowing them to escape if threatened.
- An Ice Person: The result of over consuming the Old Man Winter Plasmid.
- Body Horror: As a result of overconsumption of the Old Man Winter Plasmid, these splicers have icicle-like tumors growing on their bodies, in addition of having blue skin and glowing eyes.
- Degraded Boss: Like with the first Fireman, the first Frosty Splicer fought is considered a boss but when encountered again, they are fairly weaker.
- Elemental RockPaperScissors: These ice-based enemies can be handily defeated by fire-based attacks.
- Logical Weakness: Using Devil Kiss or Radar Range will make short work of them.
- No-Sell: In Episode Two, they are resistant to tranquilizer darts. At best, the darts can only slow them down.
- Reused Character Design: They are based on the Shock Jockey Junkie enemies during the development stage of the game.