The 20 best PlayStation games of 2013 – the top reader voted PS4, PS4 & Vita titles of the year

3. Bioshock Infinite

Ken Levine’s Big Daddy-shunning sequel had two massive problems to overcome. Its predecessor – the proper one, as opposed to Bioshock 2 – featured not only the best setting in a game ever, but also the greatest twist. Yet instead of a pointless arm-wrestle against the original, Infinite wisely took a different, far more pleasing path.

Bioshock Infinite new screensThere was no need to challenge the horrific, claustrophobic failure of Rapture. Instead Columbia feels like a real place visited in some half-remembered dream. Every alleyway tells a story, every boastful achievement reflects a society’s ingenuity and arrogance. It’s an irresistible place to explore: you find yourself straying from the breadcrumb trail, just so you can wander the nonessential path and rummage through trash cans for fruit and trousers. On its own that would be great, but you’re also accompanied by one of gaming’s greatest ‘sidekicks’ – to use a word that in no way does Elizabeth justice.

Yeah, Ellie’s up there in top spot, but in many ways Elizabeth is a more real, vulnerable character. The truly amazing thing is her range: effortlessly flowing from fear to anger to disappointment without a word. It’s all about the eyebrows. And, as she grows from caged bird to conqueror, the range of feelings you have for her is unparalleled.

A humbling, intelligent, unforgettable
tale about choice, consequence and
the perils of eating pears from bins

When the twist comes, it doesn’t hit you with the bloodied golf club of ‘would you kindly’, but instead succeeds where so few other games do: by actually making you think. While contemporaries struggle to tell a tale in half as literate a manner as any film, Infinite could not exist in any other medium. You feel like a small part in a narrative that existed long before you got involved, and which will persist long after you’ve gone. It’s a humbling, intelligent, unforgettable tale about choice, consequence and the perils of eating pears from bins.

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