Just finished it. It's a good game, but I'm not sure I'd classify it as a great game. There's a lot of shiny and veneer, but not sure there was a lot of substance. The story is entirely told through the Voxophones for the most part, and it's very weighted toward the end of the game making the rest feel like filler. The epilogue also seems to point to the fact that they realized that their ending really doesn't make sense, or rather can't. The AI was terrible and a step back, the gun's/vigors felt... off, and I really hate that both hacking and a more nuanced approach to combat was removed. The game also forgoes the "hallway shooter" of the original for "arena clearing", which is my least favorite FPS setup.
1999 mode is basically Nighmare! skill level in DOOM. Or it's supposed to be, it's actually quite a bit easier. There's a trophy for beating 1999 without using a dollar bill machine at all, which really shows off the problems with AI, weapons, vigors, and item placement. Basically "Have fun, because we didn't balance it for that" and it shows where the game design breaks down.
That said, I did love everything else and Elizabeth is probably the best AI companion in a game, even outclassing Alex Vance. The setting is fantastic, the use of music and animation is mind blowing, and attention to detail is immaculate. They brought Columbia to life just as well as they pushed Rapture to death.Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Considering the content, they really, really missed a chance to make this something special. Especially with an internet connection. I'm thinking dark souls / demon souls here. Infinite possibilities, tears and the like and the game doesn't bother pinging others gameplay concurrently? Terrible waste IMO.
You can assume every time you die you're actually transferred to a different reality which is cool, but hollow. They needed to do more.
Some people had a problem with the violence and gore, but I guess that's the least of my problems.