Customer Review

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Game, Buy It On Steam., July 21, 2010
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mass Effect - PC (DVD-ROM)
Before I begin, I want to make sure everyone knows I am NOT rating the product. I am rating the game itself. My opinion on the PRODUCT is to avoid purchase via media, and buy it on Steam. The DRM on Steam is through your account.

That said, "Mass Effect" is easily the best game I've played, comparable only to its sequel, Mass Effect 2. It's the first RPG I've sat down and launched and been sucked in from the opening menu all the way through the end. Weighing in at 30 hours(single run, casual)to over 200 hours(for complete play mastery, all levels, all classes), it's a welcome change from most recent games. Even now, after several play throughs, I find myself wanting to escape back into Bioware's equisitly created world.

The year is 2183. Humans have discovered Mass Relays built by a race known as Protheans who disappeared mysteriosly 50,000 years ago. With the Mass Relays, humans achieved galatic space travel and discovered there are many other races in the galaxy. They are soon granted an embassy in the Citidel, also built by the Protheans. Your character, Commander Shepard, is the XO on a prototype frigate of Aliance and alien design, the SR1 Normandy. This is her shakedown run. Or, so they say. Shepard will learn a piece of Prothean technology has been found and the Normandy has been tasked with retrieving it and delivering it to the Citidel. It doesn't quite work out that way. Things quickly change as the fate of the entire galaxy rests on the shoulders of Commander Shepard and the newly formed Normandy crew.

Parental Stuff-
It's a third person shooter. Your character is in constant peril, and has to make difficult choices, frequently resulting in the death of another character. There is mild language and some adult content. There is brief nudity if your Shepard has a romance. The side of a breast and curve of a female butt are visable. A Victoria Secret commercial shows more skin.

Basic stuff-
The game comes with so much background and history, you get lost in it. To say it's richly developed is an understatement. The story is so well thought out and written, it becomes like a movie you don't want to end or a book you can't put down. You will fall in love with your crew, your ship, your Shepard. Well, done, Bioware. Well, done.

Character development-
Commander Shepard is completely customizable. You can choose from either a default male or female Shepard. Or, you can create your own, selecting skintone, facial structure, eye color, hair color, hair style, makeup (female), and scarring. You select Shepard's upbringing, career history, and soldier type. The result is a character so personalized, you become truly attached.

Growth -
Like most RPG's, there are good (paragon) and bad (renegade) choices to be made. Unlike most, the points are static. Making a Paragon choice will not remove Renegade points, and vice versa. You choices and how you handle things will also effect your crew. One member in particular sees Shepard as something of a role-model. How you handle his dialogues changes him in the game. Points are awarded for every level Shepard achieves through various actions and missions. Depending on the character class, the points can be assigned to specific talents in addition to common traits. For example, if your Shepard is a Soldier, you can assign points to Assault rifles. A biotic Shepard, such as a Vanguard, is limited to Pistols. However, a Vanguard has the ability to levitate and throw enemies. Building these skills is desirable.

Game play-
Shepard automatically goes into cover when near a wall. Sometimes, Shepard doesn't come out of cover easily. Most planet missions require use of the MAKO. It's clumsy at first. It can also be frustrating, but at the same time, I miss it in Mass Effect 2. Dimurge did a great job changing the tutorial script. If you remap a key, the game picks up on it and tells you to use the newly mapped key. Elevator rides are a love\hate thing. They get old, but at the same time, the elevators provide updates on how the Traverse is reacting to your deeds. The dialogue wheel is unique in that what is says is actually what Shepard is thinking and tells you the tone of response. If you select, "Oh, crap, a popup!" Shepard will say, "How do I get rid of this thing?"

The maps are beautifully done. Each world has its own texture and sky. I enjoyed looking at the world as much as I enjoyed completing the side mission. Most structures use 1 of three different maps with the exception of the Citidel, Liara's World, Feros, Novaria, and Virmire. The score for this game is amazing. I highly recommend buying it. The song "From the Wreckage" is one of my favorites and captures the moment in the game quite well. With a Male Shepard, the dialogue is a bit flakey in some scenes. I don't know if that's a problem with the dub or what. With FemShep, the issue isn't as pronounced. It could also be that male shepards tend to take the female Alliance soldiers on missions, and female shepards take the male Alliance Adept.

Wrap up-
Go to Steam and buy the game. I'm glad this didn't end up being underated or overblown. So often highly rated games are a let down, and truly good ones, like Mass Effect, don't get the recognition they deserve. Play and tell me about your Shepard. I love to hear how others fared and developed. And, remember, What would Commander Shepard Do?
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 21, 2010 8:48:53 AM PST
Why should I buy it on steam? that sounds like a blatant advertisement for a proprietary game delivery platform, essentially making the review untrustworthy. Its well known that most people prefer games that are not dependent on a proprietary web based DRM scheme to continue to work.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 12, 2011 10:19:04 AM PDT
Rockhardly says:
Why does it make the review untrustworthy?

Steam is a great platform - I've had significantly less problems AND less "red tape" in playing games on Steam than the traditional "find the key/find the disk/etc." methods - and I don't have to worry about patching.

I have numerous examples of games I own physically (Morrowind, Oblivion, Civ 4, Chaos Theory, etc.) that I have re-bought on Steam. This was done in most cases for the higher "ease of use" and auto-patching on Steam. In one very annoying case (Spinter Cell: Chaos Theory) it was because my physical copy had been abandoned by the developer and not able to work on my Win7 - but the Steam version works perfectly.

Where do you get the idea that "Its well known that most people prefer games that are not dependent on a proprietary web based DRM scheme to continue to work"? If anything, I've seen that the opposite is true - Steam has, along with Blizzard, been a key component in keeping PC gaming alive in recent years.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 13, 2012 6:07:10 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 13, 2012 6:09:02 AM PDT
Girl Geek says:
In truth, I prefer physical media to digital. However, at the time this was written, SecuROM caused a LOT of problems. To avoid SecuROM, I recommend going with Steam. Since that has changes somewhat, I'm back to Physical Media for the most part. I still buy off Steam and I still buy off EADM (Origin). I'm in IT, but I fix computers for a living, I don't work for Valve or EA.
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