One of these ladies is a Smurf. Did you notice?*
22 hours and 10 minutes and 146 game saves later I completed the original Mass Effect.
Wow. What a game. Easily the best Xbox game I have played since Halo 2 (or 3). Even better than Gears of War 2, which some may recall I thought was pretty awesome. My intial thoughts on Mass Effect were pretty much on the mark. As I played on and figured out how to use the weaponry known as Biotics better I got more fluent with the game play however that play overall was less that stellar. It was only enjoyable when one had mastered the various power ups - and even then it was clunky. The Mako jeep which with one explores strange planets on makes Halo's Warthog look like a...pig.
It is the story of Mass Effect where the majority of the appeal lies. It's a huge space opera that doesn't quit until the fat alien sings. It's your usual 'the universe is doomed and only one man (or women!) can save the universe from the race of aliens who've destroyed organic life as we know it for eons' type of saga. It's kind of like the Matrix in that regard - the robots just wipe out humanity when they are about at the cusp of taking back the world again (or universe!). Rinse and repeat, only this time as Commander Shepard, you are Neo. Especially if you go the biotic route with your character and can like, make robots stop dead with your hands.
The music, when it needed to be was, superb. In the quiet times it was classic 1980's arcade Synthesizer which made it amusing.
Graphics, ok - it came out like 2 years ago so no dramas.
The twists and turns are fun as you get to choose the plot at certain points - do I care about this person's race in terms of my goal? I'm I an alien racist? Really? Should I obey Star Trek III's message that some times the needs of the many out weigh the needs of the one, or is my choice to be the needs of the one out weighed the needs of the many? The ending gives you 3 options on how to finish - the trick is in knowing if you've played the game like Plato or a Punk.
Mass Effect 2 has just been released. The game has an option where you can load your character from the original. This means all the plot actions you have taken will account for plot points in the sequel. Mass Effect's producers have warned players to be careful who you let live and who you let die.....or kill.
All up, I rate Mass Effect as O for Awesome story wise, C for combat play. A+ for general allround good vibeness from a game.
*Blue Smurf's in space. Take a note Avatar freaks, this came out before that film.
Check out reviews of Mass Effect: Andromeda