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on December 29, 2012
The good: ME 1/2/3 all included in one package. All of ME1 DLC is included.

The bad: the following DLC is missing:

Lair of the Shadow Broker (really good)
Overlord Pack (meh)
Arrival (mainly a solo dlc pack)
Kasumi - Stolen Memory (get to add a new character)

From Ashes (pretty good)
Leviathan (pretty good)
(anything else currently out)

The Ugly:
ME3 plays on with all ME2 DlC considered canon and played whether or not you have actually purchased it.

As a player of the entire trilogy, it is hard to recommend this to people new to the series. The only period I would do so is when this is on sale. Also keep a look out if you can buy these separately at a cheaper price, because this collection is no different from buying the games separately.
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on November 26, 2012
As of the moment I'm writing this there are 5 Amazon customer reviews about this game and none of them are "Amazon Purchase Verified" (or whatever Amazon calls it). Heres some info I have learned for those considering purchasing the Mass Effect Trilogy (PC version):

I purchased this game today (Cyber Monday 2012) thru Amazon (for $29.99 instead of the $59.99 price! Amazon is awesome!) and I activated it on the Origin client. I've never used Origin. The only Digital Game sites I have ordered from have been either Steam or Amazon (& the game required Steam) or Good Old Games (which is DRM-less btw).

On the Origin Store I see that in regard to the Mass Effect games a "points " system is used instead of just stating how many dollars a dlc costs. Strike one. All points systems stink of ripoff imo (I think Xbox uses a point system but I've never played an Xbox before so this method of ripping off customers of a handful of dollars I am not used to).

Here's how much Mass Effect 2 & 3 dlc will cost you in dollars. The dlc that adds to the story of Mass Effect (as far as I can tell) are the folowing (there is a digital comic also being sold but I will not list it since I'm not sure it adds anything to the story):

Mass Effect 2 DLC:

Lair of the Shadow Broker: cost 800 "BioWare Points"

Overlord Pack: cost 560 "BioWare Points"

Arrival: cost 560 "BioWare Points"

Kasumi - Stolen Memory: cost 560 "BioWare Points".

Mass Effect 3 DLC:

From Ashes: cost 800 "BioWare Points"

Leviathan: cost 800 "BioWare Points".

So to experience the entire Mass Effect story you would have to buy "BioWare Points" and pay (if you buy through the Origin Store which I don't know if it's mandatory for ME DLC):

BioWare Points cost:
1600 points: $20.00
1200 points: $15.00
800 points: $10.00
400 points: $5.00

$35 for ME2 DLC.
$20 for ME3 DLC.

Total: $55.00.

So I payed 29.99 for the Trilogy. That would mean I would have to spend $84.99 in total if I choose to buy these DLC.

In my opinion I believe the reason all ME2 DLC was not included was in hope that new players would spend extra on ME2. Not including all the ME3 DLC is understandable to me since ME3 is still less than a year old.

I am a new player to the Mass Effect franchise. I have not played the Trilogy yet (it's currently downloading) but if the story is as good as everyone says it is (not including the controversial ME3 ending) than I guess I will pay the extra $55 for the story DLC. But at least I saved $30! Thanks Amazon! :)
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on March 26, 2013
I already owned the first 2 titles and couldn't justify buying ME3 full price knowing full well it costs about $80 to get all the DLC for the game once it is all released.

I was surprised to find that ME2 & ME3 only comes with a small selection of DLC and not all of it like anyone who buys a trilogy/box set expects, EA really stuffed up on this package, It should have been released only with all the content, instead of pulling a bait and switch just to nickel and dime you for all the missing extras.

Do yourself a favour and wait for this package to hit the bargain bin, or wait for a complete trilogy that has all the DLC included.
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on January 19, 2013
This game series has been one of my favorites for a very long time. My only issue is that more DLC should be added directly into the download.
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on December 30, 2013
I played the Mass Effect games on my XBox 360(except 3), and I was curious about how it'd run on my gaming laptop.

I can't go back to the 360 versions.

60FPS, better inventory options, keyboard & mouse interface...the works. No controller support, so there have been some growing pains, but nothing serious if you already play PC games to begin with.

A NOTE THOUGH; THE BUNDLE DOES REQUIRE ORIGIN(which I was not aware of, nor am outright adverse to), SO KEEP THAT IN MIND IF YOU'RE THINKING OF REDEEMING THIS ON STEAM. Mass Effect 3 isn't even available on Steam, so Origin is the only way to play the trilogy on PC, short of splitting them up(1+2 on Steam, 3 on Origin).

Now, for the games themselves; I like the games, Origin isn't the Devil, I recommend this purchase to anyone curious about the games. There's lots of content here(Mass Effect 1 alone could take over 40+ hrs. to 100% complete)to enjoy, and even though the games change drastically between installments in terms of features and depth(and arguably, quality), the whole package is pretty damn satisfying.

You play as a soldier of great renown, created by you; everything from your appearance to your backstory and your skills in combat. Once you're done creating your character, you're positioned within the narrative as a representative of humanity as a whole, fighting as part of an intergalactic group of(essentially)special forces agents known as "Specters". You quickly, through circumstances beyond your control, end up in control of your own vessel, full of crew members, dispatched to space in pursuit of a criminal bent on destroying all life in the galaxy.

The first game sets the stage, explaining the world, it's workings and history; the most RPG-like of the 3, the amount of customization and depth within the game makes it one of the best western RPGs ever, let alone a great start for the series. The second shakes things up with an unconventional twist to start that expands upon the perspectives of some elements of the first game. Many of the skill and customization options are dropped in favor of streamlining the experience for new players. As a result, the second suffers a bit of an identity crisis, but the narrative more than makes up for the shortcomings of the gameplay. The third brings things to a bombastic close, all of your choices and decisions coming full circle in one glorious race to the finish. Many argue that the ending(pre-patch, anyway)leaves a lot to be desired, but it's since been expanded upon via patches and DLC.

Through conversation, or behind the barrel of a gun, you'll gain information, allies, and enemies to aid and hinder you in your search, often times finding yourself derailed by any of dozens of the myriad side-quests or seemingly barren planets to salvage items and discover ancient artifacts.

As a Specter, you can do whatever you must to accomplish your mission, and these decisions affect how people see you, and, to a lesser extent, your appearance. Major choices consist of either "Paragon"(good)or "Renegade"(bad), with the occasional gray area option. There are skills and perks for going all one way or the other, which kinda stinks, since you're less encouraged to react how you'd feel you would and more inclined to go with the option most inclined to one way or the other. Some dialogue options aren't even available unless you've been going all in on Paragon or Renegade. Your party members will sometimes comment on the things you do, but they'll never react strongly to the things you do, like leaving your party or confronting you directly(outside of the occasional scripted example). Combat consists of 3rd-person gunplay with cover use, along with squad commands ranging from simple point-and-command attack and movement options, to advanced support strategies, like having a party member lift an enemy from behind cover so you can shoot them, or overheating an enemy's guns so that they can't fire at you, allowing you to rush them down for a melee attack. The gunplay is a bit rough in the first game, but it gets much better from the second game onward, even though the game seems to limit your options severely in the latter two parts of the series. Interactions with NPCs consists of a dialogue wheel, Paragon choices at the top, Renegade choices on the bottom, usually. Even if an NPC isn't necessary for story progression, it's good to chat with everyone to see if there's a side-quest or some lore to get for the in-game encyclopedia.

As you go through the first game, you make decisions and set in motion plot threads that play out through all three games, and even though many of the complex features that make the first game so great end up being either reduced in complexity or removed entirely, the experience as a whole-which is, to play 3 40+ hour-long RPGs back-to-back as part of a single storyline that has choice and consequence influenced by you, the player-is something rarely seen in gaming. The sheer scope of the experience is something that most-if not all-gamers should at least try.
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on January 2, 2014
I bought the trilogy off of amazon at 10$ for the origin code. Disregard the previous reviews that say Origin is difficult to work with/ the game is difficult to download. If you already are familiar with the process of digital downloads this is a walk in the park. Here are the basic things you will need.

1.) An Origin Account
2.) The program Origin downloaded to your PC (Off of EA's website)
3.) The download code received from the purchase

Simply take the code, then open up Origin by using your account information. Click the "origin" button in the top left corner and click the first option "Redeem a game code." Copy and paste your code into the box provided and you will have access to the trilogy.

EA is currently selling the games for 23.99 off of Origin itself, so take advantage of this deal. It is a fantastic value for hundreds of hours of one of the best sci-fi game series to date.

Also, be aware that game controllers DO NOT WORK on this series on PC, it is a bioware developed game primarily, similar to Star Wars knights of the old republic, so it is expected that there would not be a gamepad option. It is still worth purchasing the game and adjusting the controls. You may have a little trouble driving the Mako (Rover vehicle in the game) but other than that you will have no issues.
-Eric Whinnery
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on May 29, 2015
I was super excited to start playing Mass Effect back in 2012. I was getting ready to buy 1-2 when the online reaction hit about the ending. I read the spoilers and decided I would rather not spend $100+ on a franchise with such a terrible last installment. I kept an ear out for the game, waiting for the price to drop to something I felt like paying.

With the $10 sale, I felt it was time to finally try this franchise.

The Good:

The world, characters, and storyline are all lots of fun. I really enjoyed the fact you could customize your Shepard and, in general, the games are fun. Some of the choices you make are really hard, and if you marathon the games, it really does feel like you're going on this big, epic adventure. Bioware definitely pulled out the stops in creating an immersive, emotional experience.

Gameplay is ok. I think I personally enjoyed 2 the most as far as leveling, combat, and using skills.

Overall I would say I'm a fan and loved the first two games. I'll probably give 4 a look and, depending on the reviews, might buy it.

The Bad:
For the first two weeks, Mass Effect 1 was missing a bunch of files which led to crashes when trying to access certain places. Luckily, origin patched the game so it should work now, but was still very annoying.

The game is just the base games, no dlcs. But for the price that is reasonable. I only bought the From Ashes dlc for 3 because it had a semi-important character in it.

Overall, 1-2 are worth playing. This price is great for them and I would say now that the price is back to normal, it's still worth it.

The Ugly:
Three is a bit of a glitchy, unfinished mess with some backgrounds not even fully rendered. The ending is still terrible, but if you play the game up to the last 15 minutes, it's pretty solid. I took off an entire star for three. It really did kill my enthusiasm that came from playing the first two. You can tell the game was rushed. While there are some good scenes, and the game might be improved with mods, it's just...I feel the criticism is justified. Hopefully Bioware, and more importantly EA, has learned from this and they'll give the devs all the time they need for four. And also not keep changing the creative staff.

Final Verdict: worth paying for, despite EA's greedy business practices and storyline.
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on May 27, 2014
Some people with certain operating systems are having problems getting all three games to run and are, incorrectly, blaming EA's Origin client. This can occur when trying to run the game from within Origin and without. The fix is very simple, and I did have to do this for my own system (Windows 7):

1. Create a desktop shortcut for each of the three games.
2. Right-click on the desktop icon for the game (this will have to be done for all 3).
3. Click PROPERTIES, select the COMPATIBILITY tab.
4. Check the box next to RUN THIS PROGRAM AS AN ADMINISTRATOR (you have to have Admin access to enable this)
5. Click APPLY.

That's it. You're ready to play the game and won't have to do this step ever again.

For all it's great gameplay, there are graphics issues with Mass Effect 1 that require you to open the command console in the game and change one setting. Mass Effect 2 and 3 have no problems with buggy graphics, just ME1, and only with certain video cards.

During the missions on Noveria: Peak 15 and Ilos, the squad, enemies, and anything you can interact with will turn into black pixelated blobs.
1. Open the command console (the Mass Effect wiki has instructions on enabling the command console in- game). You may have to repeat the console setup occasionally as the bioini file gets "fixed" periodically.
2. Type in: VIEWMODE UNLIT, close the command console.
3. Once you leave Peak 15 and Ilos, open the console and type VIEWMODE LIT to change back to normal graphics.

Hope this helps. Happy gaming!
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on November 28, 2012
It's a little hard to effectively describe these games as a whole, because a lot of gameplay elements change between them. In a nutshell, though, Mass Effect is a trilogy of run-and-gun squad combat action games tied to exceptionally strong storytelling and a vibrant setting.

All three games do have similar strengths and weaknesses, though. Environments and scripted events are kinetic and interesting, and although the first installment may look a little dated, the design work is excellent. Combat has a tendency to get a little repetitive - the game's built in a way that encourages you to form a strategy and stick with it - but everything moves along briskly, so you rarely feel like any main part of the game turns into a slog. Your squadmates, selected from a pool of potential party members, all have engaging personalities and interesting stories of their own to explore.

The real strength of all three games is definitely the writing. All three Mass Effect games have scripts that easily set standards for the medium, and the setting is vast and well-realized, with convoluted side narratives and history making for a complicated political situation that feels real and whole. The voice acting across the board stands out as the very apex of the medium, with special recognition going to Jennifer Hale's absolutely superb performance as the female voice of Shepard (the PC). They're also absolute marvels when it comes to player empowerment; you have the ability to determine your choices throughout the game at every juncture, and although some of these choices initially feel a bit gimmicky (there aren't a lot of actual consequences), by the end of the series nearly every choice you make in the entire run has some significant impact on the plot, characters or world. It's a feat that I've never seen matched in any medium, and the third game in particular does a phenomenal job of bringing all the possible twists of your personal ME decisions to coherent and consistent ends. In some ways it's also one of the most diversity-minded game settings available, too; the human cast is refreshingly multiethnic and gender-balanced (but more on this in a minute). The third game also deserves special recognition for being essentially a series of epic climaxes to series-long subplots with mind-blowingly awesome set pieces. Nearly every mission would qualify as the ending sequence of a lesser game.

ME does have a handful of weak spots. Some of the minigames have been polarizing - the first one has you cavorting around in a goofy lander, which took a lot of flak for its clunky controls and shift in the game's tone, but I personally found driving it quite a bit of fun. The second and third both have variations on mining, which honestly are pretty tedious but also don't take long to complete. The games also feature a consistently iffy cover system that makes some changes over the series but never really gets comfortable. Don't expect much from combat customization - in terms of fighting, these are action games, not really RPGs. The series ending also got a lot of (deserved) complaints, but they did release a (free) DLC to expand it - and speaking as someone who never played the original ending, I found the resolution immensely satisfying and a perfect end to the series. Looking up the original ending on Youtube, though, I STRONGLY recommend making sure the expansion is installed before finishing the series (mostly it's just REALLY ABRUPT and full of plot holes the expanded cut fills in).

My personal biggest complaint about the series is that the design work of the series overwhelmingly caters to the male gaze, sometimes past the point of being insulting. Women (especially in the second game) constantly dress like strippers even when there's no justification for it, and the camera loves to linger on certain parts of their anatomy at even the most thematically inappropriate moments, especially in the second game where it gets so exaggerated that it often overshadows anything else happening in the scene. There's even an entire monogendered species whose core concept is that they're the paragons of beauty for all races, and of course they look like large-breasted space babes. What kills me about this is that these problems are exclusively design-related and don't reflect the writing at all - these same characters are also some of the series' strongest, and certainly not tokens there to be gawked at in any in-universe sense. The early series also suffers from some unfortunate implications in regards to homosexuality (it essentially doesn't exist, unless you're hot ladies, who are fair game for everyone). The third game does deserve recognition, though, for addressing that and including the best gay character I've ever seen in a video game. But obviously these issues aren't going to bother everyone (although really, guys, they probably should).

Overall the series is one of the best ever made just for the story and characters alone, and the games are also beautiful and fun to play. I highly recommend them to pretty much everyone - whether you play games for the story, the challenge, the combat, the visuals or the feeling of a world reacting to your actions, the Mass Effect series is among the best ever made.
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on January 16, 2013
Im unsure what the reason is, but ive spent over 5 hours with tech support from ea origin, which is required for the trilogy, trying to get just the first game to launch. Perhaps there is some external force preventing me from playing the game, but these are the facts that make up my experience as a customer:

I bought the trilogy as a windows user

I installed origin completely

I launched mass effect one to no avail

I spent more than 2 weeks in contact with the very unhelpful ea origin staff

I attempted to fix the problem with my own knowledge and that of the internet and my friends, to no avail

Im sure theres a solution somewhere, but until it is found, i am a consumer with 30 wasted dollars and a very unsatisfied experience
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