In a land far away, there lived a young woman named Elizabeth who needed saving. A man with a gun, eager to wipe away his debt of a troubled past is sent on a mission to rescue her. Little did he know, his destiny was more than a single job.

Bioshock Infinite perfect example of writing composition allows players to delve into the world of Columbia and experience the true nature of America’s broken past. Just like Rapture, Columbia is a mystery to be solved. Upon arriving at Columbia’s door steps, you’ll praise the sights and beauty of the city – a perfect world. As you discover the hidden truths, America’s darkest past such as racism, war and corruption start to unravel.

Focused on your mission, you play as Booker DeWitt – the man here to save Elizabeth from her imprisonment from the so-called evil ‘Comstock’ ruler and prophet of the city of Columbia. This simple task is bound with many questions the player face and just like myself, you will be guessing your motives every step of the way. Saving a girl is one thing but who is she, why are they imprisoning her and who are you giving her to? These questions may be a straightforward goal towards the end but nothing is that simple and players will experience a story that will both wow and mentally shock you.

Elizabeth is the innocent girl whom you must save but little is known to as why you must. Avoiding the escort style missions that plague dodgy NPC’s and AI in other games, Elizabeth is a key asset in your battles across Columbia. Low on ammo? Well Elizabeth will scrounge around looking for the right one to replenish your barrels. She even gets out of your line of fire.

The amount of detail and emotion Irrational has embedded into Elizabeth is astounding and if you’ve seen the making of videos for this game, you can truly see how they brought this character to life. In non-combat scenarios, Elizabeth will explore within your vicinity looking at objects and occasionally return with something useful like more money or vigors.

During combat, Elizabeth will assist you in any way possible. She’ll shout out warnings of incoming types of enemies, provide you with more ammo and even giving you health or resurrecting you. She’s your lifesaver every step of the way. Players will feel a connection with her from the get go providing assistance like no other AI has done in a video game. I came to even cherish her presence in all the situations I’ve encountered. The game would be lost without her help.

Avoiding the usual run of the mill shooter element in Bioshock Infinite, Irrational has taken the combat to a whole new level. Unlike previous Bioshocks, Infinite shows the power of choice in combat enticing players to option their method of attacking.

Earlier in the game, you learn the basic mechanics of the world you’re in. From shooting targets to the introduction of Vigors – a new name for the plasmids you’ll find in Bioshock that gives you the ability to wield powers at your foes. All of this was done during a fair situated when you enter Columbia. Vigors come in all shapes and form, the usual electricity, fire and possession types return but chucks in a few new ones like Buck which pushes enemies into the air or another one with summons flesh eating crows at people – there’s a Vigor for every occasion.

The introduction of the Skyhook felt somewhat invigorating at first touch. It was an iconic tool featured on the game prior to launch. For a while, I’ve been curious to see how they would implement a tool such as the Skyhook into Infinite. It didn’t disappoint at all. The skyhook takes combat in Infinite to a whole new platform, literally. Jumping on the rails, you begin to become more risky in your effort of travels traversing the city but you also tend to experiment with it as a weapon or combination within your arsenal.

Mixing in with the basic elements of Bioshock we’ve already became accustomed to, the Skyhook adds that extra momentum into the combat allowing players to play with their enemies. With the newer open aired environment in comparison to Rapture, Infinite gives you that breathing space to experiment your tactics in combat. For instance, I’ll jump onto a rail using my Skyhook, survey the area maybe pick some stranglers off before jumping into the heat of the fight. At times, the rail could also be used as your quick retreat tactic where if you’re underwhelmed in the situation, a quick jump onto the Skyhook rail will get you out of a mess quickly.

Columbia boasts so much detail and the effort Irrational has put into the world and characters themselves is quite an amazing feat. The world is so immersive, I was literally looking at every nook and cranny there is cause everything had a story to tell. The soundtrack itself boasts more emotion than any other game could push out.

Irrational has hit all the points in making a perfect and believable experience in a video game. A video game hasn’t engrossed me into it’s world and characters like Bioshock Infinite did in a long time. It was so emotionally engaging, my hands trembled at every turning point during the game and in the end it didn’t fail to disappoint. Bioshock Infinite is not only the best game I’ve played this year. It might be one of the best ever.

Developer: Irrational Games, 2K Marin & Human Head Studios
Publisher: 2K Games
Release: 26th March 2013 (PC – Reviewed, Xbox 360, PS3 and OSX – Coming Soon) – TheGamersPad is powered by AMD.