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"BioShock Infinite" Tips: Possession Vigor

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This author is very into video games—specifically the "BioShock" series.

This article will cover everything about the Possession Vigor in BioShock Infinite. Read on to find basic information such as upgrades and vigor combos, along with advanced ways to use them. All opinions that are expressed are my own and have come from my experiences playing and beating the game multiple times (more times than I can count) on Hard and 1999 Mode. Also, it might (or might not) matter to note that I play on a computer, just in case you begin to wonder.




Possession is the first vigor that you acquire.

Before upgrading, Possession allows you to temporarily turn an enemy Automaton into an ally and costs half of your starting salts. Once it wears off, the machines will become hostile towards you. Possessing vending machines will cause it to pour out money.



Possession Aid

The cheapest ($50) and first vigor upgrade of the game. In addition to possessing the Automatons, the upgrade allows you to temporarily possess humans who will fight for you and will suicide when the effect wears off. From this point, you can start using Possession Traps. The traps aren't worth using during the early part of the game because they cost double the salts (all of your salts) than the regular Possession.

Possession for Less

This upgrade costs $1653, but it is worth it. It allows you to use Possession twice as much, which is useful when using the expensive Possession trap.


  • Possession does not work on Handymen or the Siren (Lady Comstock's Ghost)
  • Firemen and Crows will not suicide when Possession wears off.
  • When Possessing Patriots, Firemen, or Crows, the duration of the effect is greatly shortened.
  • Possession Traps, when activated, will possess one enemy and force other enemies caught within its radius to suicide.
  • Possession only works on one enemy at a time. Possessing a second target will end the duration on the first target causing it to suicide if it's a light human unit, otherwise, it will become hostile.

Combo With Other Vigors

Possession can be combined with either Devil's Kiss or Shock Jockey.

Devil's Kiss

When you possess an enemy and hit him with Devil's Kiss, he will ignite and run toward your enemies, causing fire damage to whoever is close enough.

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Shock Jockey

When you hit your possessed victim with Shock Jockey, he will run toward your enemies like a running Tesla coil. It will do damage and stun enemies who are close enough.

Combining Possession with Devil's Kiss does more damage than with Shock Jockey, but being able to keep multiple enemies stunned and out of the fight is more useful, in my opinion. Especially in big fights where you are getting outflanked.

Note: I would never use these combos in 1999 mode. They are very Salt inefficient and in 1999 mode being inefficient will get you killed. The only reason I would ever risk doing these combos in 1999 mode is to watch the animations because they are pretty cool.


Playing Style

Possession fits into every playing style. Like I said earlier, I've used it in every playthrough. It works well in every weapon build. If you're not familiar, here are some styles:

  • Close Range Combat: Melee, Shotgun, Heater, Machine Gun, Undertow Vigor, Murder of Crows Vigor.
  • Medium Range Combat: Machine Gun, Repeater, Pistol, Hand Cannon, Carbine, All Vigors.
  • Sniper Combat (Long Range): Sniper Rifle, Carbine, Repeater. It's difficult to use Vigors in Long Range fights when the enemies have cover and can get out of your Line of Sight.

Best Way to Use the Possession Vigor

When fully upgraded, this becomes one of the most useful vigors in the game. During a fight with numerous enemies, using Possession serves as good crowd control, allowing you to pick off other enemies or get into a better position.

When choosing enemies to possess, I prefer to choose targets that are harder to kill, such as the Firemen, Flak Cannons, or Rockets because these units will kill themselves if their allies don't take them down first.

As I've stated earlier, the Firemen won't stay possessed as long as the weaker enemies, but they are a powerful ally for the short time you have them. A Fireman will usually come into the fray with a lot of back-ups. If you possess him while he is near his allies he will do an area-of-effect attack which will kill most of them off leaving him an easy target.

When there's a Patriot in the fray, choosing who to possess depends on the positioning of the enemies. If the Patriot is the Line of Sight and near its allies, I recommend possessing it. If the Patriot's allies are spread out, I'd possess something else. The Possession duration on Patriots is extremely short. When you possess one, the Patriot takes time to aim at an enemy and start cranking its gun. By the time it begins shooting a few rounds the effect of Possession will have worn off. Sometimes this can result in no kills and a waste of salt.

When you are able to get the drop on a group of enemies (at least three enemies) who are in close proximity to each other, it is very Salt efficient to charge up a Possession Trap and hitting as many targets as you can. As stated earlier, it will possess one target while causing others caught in the trap to commit suicide. Remember, the trap requires double the Salts, so hitting at least three enemies makes it efficient, but if you hit two, at least you will break even.

Final Thoughts

Possession is my most used Vigor. I have always fully upgraded this Vigor and used it in every major fight. It's a good way to distract and thin out the enemy numbers. Maybe I'll do a run-through without using Possession, except on vending machines.

I hope this article has been enjoyable and informative. If there's any way I can improve it, let me know, and thanks for taking the time to read it!

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