Mass Effect - Review @ RPGFan
RPGFan has posted a review of Bioware's recently released space-themed title for the XBox, Mass Effect, giving it an overall score of 90%:
While the story is engaging, it's far from novel. There are no seriously major plot twists, and while there is character development for the important NPCs, it's very predictable. Of course, anyone who has ever played a BioWare game knows that the real meat is in the character interactions and dialogue choices. You see, while the basic missions available to you are the same no matter how you develop your character, your skills and how you talk to people determine how they react to you and how you resolve those situations. For example, you could answer nicely and diffuse the hostage crisis, or you could say 'screw it' and go in guns blazing. Sometimes there's even a third option, which is refreshing when most games that give you such choices opt for the strict "persuade or kill" policy. And while the characters aren't particularly original, I really liked Kaiden's character, as he was the only one who didn't seem like a predictable cliché...
Honestly, I've never found gameplay to be the selling point for me when BioWare games are concerned. Jade Empire's was overall atrocious, and KoTOR had way too much micromanaging for my tastes. Fortunately, Mass Effect avoided the former and managed to tone down the latter. After the initial missions, the game becomes a lot more open ended, allowing you to discover various sidequests and extra goodies that net you experience. In fact, darn near everything you do gets you some experience, which is something I've always appreciated in both Black Isles and BioWare games...
Speaking of Mass Effect's combat, it's done much better than either in Jade Empire or KoTOR....While it tended to feel a bit micromanagey at times, my biggest decision after a certain point was whether to use bullets that work better on synthetic organisms or fleshy ones. Major props to BioWare for avoiding the make-or-break micromanaging system from KoTOR.
Information aboutMass Effect
SP/MP: Single + MP
Platform: Xbox 360