What is Mass Effect 3?
An enriching and fleshed out universe set to the tone of a dark space opera
This is Mass Effect 3 review is a little before the game actually arrives on shelves worldwide. Nonetheless, I feel the need to write this review for other reasons. For people looking at possibly buying this game, or just in general people who want to know more about the universe.
I am a huge fan first of all, so I am a little biased in telling you this is going to be a fantastic game for numerous reasons. I have been with the Mass Effect franchise since the start of it all. Mass Effect 1 was super fun, and memorable. One of my favorite scenes in all of video game history happened in that game for me. The scene where I was able to make the main villian commit suicide by revealing the truth of his actions to himself.
Something your average video game would definitely not allow.
The thing about this franchise, and is sure to follow in Mass Effect 3 to even more dramatic extent, is the universe itself. It is rare to find a game in the role-playing genre where there are entire unique cultures, races, and its own set of extensive lore.
For anyone who is into immersion as I am, this game offers it in spades. It reminds me almost of a reinvisioned Star Wars, only much darker. There is also overtones from my favortie 1920s writer, H.P Lovecraft, strewn throughout the game's main storyline.
Which in of itself, makes this game awesome.
The game takes place in the Milky Way Galaxy, not long after humanity has started traveling amongst the stars and have met other sapient advanced civilizations. Humanity is different from most other races, in that their genetic diversity is greatly pronounced and they are often considered rash or even shortsighted in the pursuits of power.
In other words, most of the other races view humans as impatient children. A race that vies for too much too soon.
The Mass Effect trilogy follows humanity's rise in the Milky Way galactic empire, both politically and culturally. You as the player will create a very important role in the destiny and legacy that humanity leaves behind it. As you play, you aere actively deciding the impact that humanity will have on the universe.
You will either succeed in saving it, or you will die trying against a foe that is horrifically fearsome.
By die trying, I really do mean your character will die and the game will be finished. In other games when your character dies you have to reload your last saved point and try, try again. Not so in Mass Effect 3. In this game you can actually complete the entire game and have the hero of the story die as an actual option - all based off the choices you make while you play.
Before I go on about the gameplay and the classes in this new Bioware game, I would like to first give you a brief synopsis of what has happened in the universe prior and leading up to the events in Mass Effect 3.
Events in Mass Effect 1
Told in a comical fashion. A good refresher for people coming back to the Bioware franchise
The Events of and Gameplay of Mass Effect 2 Summed Up
While both games are good, Mass Effect 2 became a rockstar - vastly improving upon its predecessor.
Mass Effect 3 News
The third installment is almost here, what can you expect?
Some of the things you are going to be looking at when buying your new copy of Mass Effect 3 are going to be new and exciting. Other things are going to be features returning for ME3 from ME2 and ME1.
At this point a lot of this is just conjecture, but there has been a few things confirmed for what is in store for us. First of all, expect one of the most personal interactive storytelling games perhaps ever made.
Your save files from Mass Effect 1 and 2 will be automatically imported into the third installment. Choices you made all the way back in ME1 will come back to haunt you or glorify you. Also the choices you made in ME2 will have a direct impact on what ME3's outcome is going to be. Bioware has outdone themselves this time, promising that ME3 will change much more dramatically based off your choices this time around than what was presented in the sequel.
Mass Effect 3 News: Old Features Making a New Appearance
The flowing dialogue wheels and trees are coming back. As are the cinemactic conversation scenes that have set the Bioware franchise so apart from its peers. All the weapons as well will be making a return, along with the grenades return from the original game.
The weapons themselves will be a lot more versatile alas. With weapon upgrades that can not only change the effects of the weapon, but also customize them to various appearances and skins. The workbench portion of the game has been visually improved where you actually get to see the weapon laying there on the table as you work on it.
The mining exploration mini-game will also be making a return - albeit in a different form. As of yet it is unconfirmed what the new exploration mini-game is going to be like. Yet if it is anything like the other features Bioware is bringing back, it will be vastly improved.
The classes from Mass Effect 2 - including the engineer - will also be making a return to the final closing chapter of the series. All of them have been tweaked, with skill trees extended much beyond what they were in sequel. Also powers will evolve more than once this time around.
As of yet, no knowledge has been shared of any new classes. One class that did see some serious updating to was the Vanguard, with an increase power in shotguns.
New Features of Mass Effect 3
The new features are heightened interactive storytelling - told to the brilliant music of Clint Mansell - along with a handful of extremely interesting add-ons/updates to old features.
For instance, the shotguns increase in power and usefulness will make the Vanguard seem like a totally brand new class. Often in Mass Effect 2 players would get frustrated over using the shotgun/rush features of the Vanguard. Both of these have been tweaked to make them better and more enjoyable for the player to use.
Another big thing, something personally I am glad they did, is made biotics much more powerful.
In the previous games, biotics are always shown being badasses in the cinemactic clips but never actually a badass in real game play. This is an update I am looking forward to immesnely. Especially to see what Jack can do - an NPC from the sequel that escaped from a maximum security prison using the psychotic powers of her troubled mind.
One big update is the new usage and focus on melee attacks. Every class will have their own version of a melee ability, many using an omni-tool for their weapon. For example, the soldier will have an omni-blade that he can swipe at his enemies. Including a one-hit-kill move that he can dish out.
The Bioware Mass Effect Franchise Offers the Same Great Story
I am not going to lie that this is one of my favorite games. The reasons why are many, but the main reason why I keep coming back to this space opera franchise is due solely to their story. The characters are deep and moving, each motivated by their own sets of goals, desires and fears.
The interaction is rich and the story arcs very engrossing. The huge jump from quality from Mass Effect 1 to Mass Effect 2 was significant to say the least. The game was moving in so many ways that one may never think is possible coming from a video game.
The epic and brutal conclusion of the third one is a promise I believe Bioware can deliver on after seeing the improvements they made in the sequel.
If you are looking at buying Mass Effect 3, but are unsure if it is for you - ask yourself a simple question.
Do you like a great story? One that you can be totally immersed in and actually feel for the characters on the screen you are playing and interacting with?
If the answer is yes, you will love Mass Effect 3. It is the only RPG of recent history that has really made the cut as far as I am concerned. It is the rich and dark themes laced throughout the setting and story that sets it so far apart from its peers.
The game also appeals heavily towards action-game players. The action is just fun. You can replay it multiple times and still not be bored. It is a good value for your money in terms of replayability. Always an important factor in a game.
If you want to check out where the storyline for Mass Effect 3 is going, watch the official trailer below.