With the year slowly coming to a close, I’m starting to think about what the best game I played this year was, and Mass Effect could very well be it. The strongest point is the polished setting and story as well as the high level of immersiveness. The two games that come close in that regard (from my list of course) are Persona 3 and Call of Duty 4. The former, however, was too long to be considered for the best game, while the story of the latter in the end wasn’t as deep as the one of Mass Effect. We’ll see what else I’ll come around to this year.
Main Character, Choices
Another strong point of the game is how the main character is written. Jane or Jack Shepard always retains a marine’s hard-assed attitude, even when played with the “good” choices. And the moral choices in this game feel less black-and-white than in other games which use this kind of system. I often decided to give some other character what was coming for them. Maybe this has to do with the fresh setting, which is not influenced by things such as Star Wars’ bright side of the force as in Knights of the Old Republic. Yet another strong point are the highly meaningful choices which are possible. If Bioware manages to transport the effects of the choices over into Mass Effect 2, it would be perfect (similar to what Peter Molyneux announced for Fable 3).
The only thing that left a slightly bad taste were the side missions. They always follow the same pattern, are inconsequential for the main story, and re-use the same assets over and over.
Bring down the sky DLC
I finished this DLC on my playthrough, and I would say this would be the format the side missions could have been, with at least a bit of story during each mission. Since the recently released “Pinnacle Station” DLC doesn’t seem to offer much in the way of story, I decided against buying it as well.
The Reapers are coming, and I’ll find some way to stop them.