posted by Thylbanus (Saint Clair Shores, MI) Apr 27, 2012
Member since Apr 2012
Having just started playing TPS/FPS games, I was hesitant to buy the Mass Effect series, but this one does not disappoint. Fun through most of the game. Some changeups to deal with, but nothing over the top. Not quite the game that Mass Effect I is, but a fitting sequel. As with most sequels this one does not quite live up to it's predecessor, but at least it's not a disappointment.
Here is a breakdown:
Gameplay 5 - Gameplay has been streamlined, but sometimes a little too much. The crafting is tedious unless you get the 1.02 update. The game AI is a real let down though. I exploited AI blindspots and made easy kills on hard opponents. But it also works against you as your teammates will run off in their own firefights without backup and get killed, lost, or hung up on something. In several areas I would get put on ledges that I could not them drop from and have to reload the game. Some of the differing missions adding terrain difficulties and changing up the flow of missions is nice. This one feels much more like a poor console port than it's predecessor.
Graphics 9 - Very good for the time.
Sound 7 - The music is fitting and I found that I didn't have to turn it off as it adds to the experience. Voice acting is pretty good, but since they are Canadian, many have Canadian accents. There are a few poor examples in some tertiary characters. Seth Green, Jennifer Hale, Martin Sheen, Keith David, Michael Dorn, Carrie Ann Moss, Adam Baldwin, and Claudia Black are stellar, and Michael Bettie as Mordin is the best. Even if you don't buy the game, YouTube Mordin Solis Sings and sit back for a funny mod of a Gilbert and Sullivan classic.
Storyline 6 - A bit of a disappointment, I expected more than reworking some of the same storylines. While the story is good, I felt cheated when I neared the end to find that certain plot devices were just reworked.
Replay 5 - Suffers from the rehash of storyline
Value 8 - (at $5, 6 at $15) Another good $10 bin game
I just pre-ordered ME3, so am re-installing ME2 again while I wait until March 6. I played through ME2 at least half a dozen times. By choosing different team members and loadouts, the replayability factor is high. Both ME1 and 2 were fantastic games, so I am confiddent that ME3 will live up to my expectations... we shall see. One of the best games ever made was Dragon Age 1, but DA2 sucked pretty bad, do there is no guarantee.
Mass effect 2 sets the bar for storytelling in video game, and it's one of the strongest arguments that Video game is a form of art. I, for one, genuinely believe this game is a ground breaking game that beautifully combined shooter gameplay with a role playing storyline and it's also the best game Bioware offered so far after Baldur's Gate series. Die hard RPG fans may find this game a bit lacking, but the genre has to evolve to get better. Mass Effect 2 did it and did it brilliantly. First, the removal of redundant inventory makes mass effect 2 a very well paced game. Shepard can only carry several guns on mission and every weapon you start with is still viable in later game. Those changes are made for better experience. One thing I do miss is the weapon mods. they could do it like deus ex that gives a small and limited space to store some extra stuff. That's one of the reasons I can not give it a perfect 10. Second, character development is still a huge part of gameplay and the skills and abilities are still necessary for combat and social. Some people think that role-playing means running around for meaningless side quests (mass effect 1 comes to mind) and keeping track of stats. I would those are not what defines role playing game. Mass Effect 2 gives the player the true immersion that you can expect from a role playing story line. That means taking a role and feel your role not plodding with meaningless exploration and stats.