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FEATURED VOXPOP oblivion437 Update: I was unfortunately not aware of Shamus Young's severe criticism of Fallout 3 available here to link in the original piece and I regret that.  It dovetails rather nicely with what I've written and it's much better executed than my piece.  I strongly recommend anyone...

Mass Effect Member Review for the Xbox360

By:
Cloudcity
01/16/08
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE RPG 
PLAYERS
PUBLISHER Microsoft 
DEVELOPER Bioware 
RELEASE DATE  
M Contains Blood, Language, Partial Nudity, Sexual Themes, Violence

What do these ratings mean?

Everyone else can write reviews on whether this is a good game and why or why not. There are many reviews written.

I'm merely going to comment on what is wrong with this game, and should be improved.

Consequences. These games never have true consequences. Yes, you can get Paragon or Renegade points but the only consequence I found for my actions, was that if you don't do enough good or bad actions, You won't unlock the 2 achievements rather than any real dire effects to your gameplay. In addition, there is a lack of proportion to these points. You can get 25 Renegade points for Blackmailing a Turian into testifying against a criminal, and only 2 points for executing an innocent person... I guess my scales of morality are out of balance, because I thought executing a bakers dozen of civillians was somehow far worse than blackmail...

Difficulty. It is not more difficult, merely more tedious on higher difficulty settings. You can look forward to mere frustration as the only cause of death is random headshots from Snipers. I never found any other reason for ending up dead. If you are playing as one of the Caste types which cannot use Heavy armour, than you can look forward to reloading many times from sniper headshots. The programmers concept of difficulty seemed to be 'How many times can you get shot in the head and killed instantly before you snap'...

Weapons Selection: You have your choice of 4 weapons. You will of course only use the Pistol to begin the game, and then probably at some point get a good shotgun or assault rifle and never require the change of weaponry ever again, except to buy a bigger better shotgun or assault rifle. The only possible reason I found for switching is if you feel like setting one weapon up for anti-organics and the other for anti-synthetics.

Linear ? or not Linear ? Yes. You can wander about and go to planets and missions in any order. However, there is the right way that you are supposed to go in, and the wrong way, which merely makes everything far more difficult for you... ie. You have 3 main locations in the main earlier storyline for the game. You could basically assign them a difficulty rating of easy, normal and hard... which do not change really regardless of when you do them. You clearly would be better off doing the highest difficulty rating of hard, when you have done the other two already and have a much higher level. You don't have to... but common sense says you should... especially if you happen to be playing on the insane difficulty setting.

Why oh why, can I not merely play Insane to begin ? I can see some games, where you are earning the right to play that difficulty level; some sort of rite of passage I guess to prove you are a real gamer. Not in a roleplaying game though... You have to play on normal to unlock hardcore, than you have to beat it on hardcore to unlock insane. Yes, you heard me right. You have to play this game and finish it twice, to even be able to play it on insane difficulty. I suppose for those who want to unlock the achievements, that's not a problem since the minimum requirement to unlock them all, would be to finish this game 3 times... as different character classes (no one class can unlock them all, you need a soldier, a biotic and a tech character)...

Planet exploration. It would seem that every other planet in the Universe other than Earth is composed of giant mountains that you must slowly go up and down over and over to get to your destination, which is the most tedious part of the game but rather necessary as it is the main source of weapons, gear and money... not to mention experience, for the game. (You manage to drop your ship at one point in the game, within a 20m long gap however the rest of the game, you cannot drop your ship closer than a few kilometres). By the time you are done this game, you are going to hate mountains with every muscle and bone in your body...

That's about it, with the exception of some Graphic problems (occasional glitches, barrier tends to look bad)... With all that said... This is a great game, and a must buy for those who were fans of KOTOR.


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B+ Revolution report card
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