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About the product
- Chart your own course in a dangerous new galaxy. Unravel the mysteries of the Andromeda galaxy as you discover rich, alien worlds in the search for humanity's new home
- Battle like never before. New additions like destructible environments, boosted jumps for added verticality, and all-new weapons and Biotics make combat more thrilling than ever
- With amazing weapons, powers and tech, and much more flexible skill and weapon progression tree-you can replicate your play style to make you unstoppable against new, powerful alien enemies
- iscDownload only, No disc included
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Mass Effect: Andromeda takes players to the Andromeda galaxy, far beyond the Milky Way. There, players will lead our fight for a new home in hostile territory as the Pathfinder-a leader of military-trained explorers. This is the story of humanity's next chapter, and player choices throughout the game will ultimately determine our survival.
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All in all, I don't hate this game. I've had fun, I've played, it's been good.
Without giving any spoilers I'd say the characterization is not as strong, which is kind of the heart of the ME experience. I'm not all the way through the game so can't say much about the overall story arc - it seems OK so far. But the small stories and characters just aren't as compelling here, many feel like feeble retreads of ME2 missions. And some conversations that happen in the engine (rather than cutscenes) move the camera to a bad place where often you cannot see who's talking, and then the positional audio moves their voice way off to the side and lowers the volume so it's hard to hear as well.
Combat is not as enjoyable for me, you cannot pause and micromanage your teams combat, you can only tell them where to stand, and you do not manage their equipment (which I don't miss that much, but feels like a loss when you can't hand-me-down a good weapon or armor). You really can't tell much about how effective your teammates are, because you usually can't see them or track who they're shooting, so overall they just become kind of non-factors during combat. Definitely skewed away from older BioWare RPGs and towards a 3rd person action game. It's a disappointment because not being able to utilize the team fully means the enemy has to be nerfed or the main character has to be OP, neither of which is much fun.
The character creator is really disappointing, I struggled to make a face I liked and did not really succeed but didn't want to keep restarting. I don't really understand why these RPG games force you to make the face at the beginning and then lock you out of changing it. I know it adds continuity, but it's hard to spend a lot of time on it when you just want to get started on the game, and then the face inevitably looks different in-game than in the creator.
The galaxy map and space exploration are more streamlined here too. The planet mining is done via driving rather than planet scanning, but there is still an awkward use of the scanner in space. When the game pops up an icon showing you which mouse button to press it usually means that it was confusing, but they stuck with the icon rather than dump the scanner and do something more elegant. The graphics in space are really nice though.
Overall I'm disappointed in this offering from the company that gave us KOTOR, ME 1&2, and DAO. I know the writing can vary from game to game, and gameplay choices evolve. But it's not up to the level of these previous games, and in some cases I couldn't really believe some one played this game and said "let's ship it!". Seems unfinished and unpolished in many ways. But I've gotten used to some of the quirks, and my Ryder's face, and am still playing my way through.
And that's the problem.... This game was anything other than a Bioware game I would have called it a good inaugural start of a franchise and it would be something I would love to see the studio perfect and add onto for their future releases. But this is a Bioware game, and in addition to this, this is a Mass Effect game. It's also a Mass Effect game that has so much potential that it's infuriating in it's short comings. Are the gaps in animation game breaking? No... but they do happen in the middle of cut scenes when animation is at it's most important... Are the side missions bugged to the point where you can't even see what's going on in the cut scenes? Yes it's happened once or twice in my 40+ hour playthrough. Will conversations and audio cues cut out mid sentence or come in delayed? Absolutely.
In short... this game is buggy as hell and given the title of the franchise and the development cycle that makes it even painful to witness.
Final verdict: wait for them to fix the bugs then get started... If you're an avid fan of the franchise like me you'll want to do yourself a favor and come into this with a lower expectation the presentation is very rough. The good news is after 3 or 4 hours into the game the universe opens up as does the rewards. 3 out 5 stars