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About the product
- Experience a rich and engrossing story where your choices decide the fate of galaxy
- Engage in emotionally charged interactions with the most realistic digital actors ever seen in a video game, using an innovative new dialog system
- Immerse yourself in an incredible new adventure from world-famous masters of the RPG; BioWare
- Stunning high resolution graphics, optimized GUI and controls for PC gamers
- Dominate the battlefield with new individual squad member command system
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You take the role of Commander Shepard starship Normandy, the last hope for all life in the Galaxy. Saren, a rogue member of the elite and untouchable Spectre agents, has discovered the secret to unleashing an apocalyptic force upon the galaxy, and only you stand in his way. To save the lives of billions, you must do whatever it takes to stop Saren and prevent the return of an ancient force bent on the destruction of all organic life.
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Some of the controls could have been designed better, but that's cleared up in the second game and they're pretty easy to get used to anyway, so no real problem there.
Overall I highly recommend this game as a precursor to the rest of the trilogy, but you should probably make sure your video card has at least 1G of RAM rather than the minimum 256mb. It'll run, but you'll probably have to turn off a few settings.
The companions are unique, interesting and fun to interact with. Shepard is a block of wood with crazy eyes, so don't look too hard in his/her direction when people are talking. Shepard does not know how to dance, so don't visit the club dancefloors. Ever.
The sound and music are crisp, clear and don't get in the way of combat. I just wish videogames would remove the clunky noise footsteps make; they don't improve immersion unless you are in a situation where there is no other noise but your heartbeat and breathing.
I thoroughly enjoyed this game from start to finish.
Review Update - I dont know what I was thinking when I wrote this first impression review a year ago. After completing Mass Effect I am convinced this is one of the best RPG's I have ever played! Man that Shepard really grew on me and so did my crew. I was intrigued with the plot, branching storylines, and the romance. I was all the way Liara from the beginning. I definitely wanted the alien chic! I loved the worlds, exploring, finding hidden items and artifacts and making in game choices that truly affected the final outcome of the story. I think I am at 98% completion I seriously tried to explore every niche of the galaxy. Mass Effect is my favorite RPG since Final Fantasy 7 but I must admit Dragon Age Origins which I am currently playing is giving it a run for its money! If you haven't played Mass Effect do it now! Dont overlook this game like I originally did, big mistake!!
First the technical stuff:
The game downloaded with no problem. I even had my computer go to sleep in the middle of the download and had to stop it and restart it a day later and still, all the bits came through without a problem.
The game did not work on my Win 7 machine at first, it would crash at the configuration utility when trying to start up. I had to go to the website and find the patch, after that it ran flawlessly. That said, I don't understand why a 4+ year old game doesn't immediately go out an look for the latest patch(es) after installing. Or at least provide you a button to do so, much less include it in the game itself so you don't have to waste time searching on your own. Clearly the EA/Bioware/whomever just threw the necessary files over the wall to Amazon's servers sans modification/updating.
Next, try as I might, I couldn't find a manual for the game. Maybe I'm too old school but the in-game tutorial wasn't exactly a beacon of information so I wanted to read the manual - no such animal was included in the download or Bioware's support website. So again, I had to search the web for a manual and download it myself.
Granted, all this wasn't a huge deal and only took a little while to overcome and is how it used to be by default, and yes, the game is well-priced, but still...when I drive a car off the lot, used or not, I don't expect it have to put oil in it and fill up the tires. Also, why in the world the developers decided to make that g-awful video haze by default, I can't imagine but I turned that off immediately.
If DAO could be called a fighting game with some talking, ME1 is a talking game with some fighting. There seems to be an endless amount of dialogue options available and one could spend days exploring all of them. And 8 hours into it, I HATE ELEVATORS. I dread getting on any elevator because of the length of time it takes to get from one level to another on some worlds. Apparently, the far future hasn't figured out how to make express elevators. Gameplay is a little confusing too - I haven't completely figured out how to do certain things or what certain things are for (Hey, maybe I could read the manual!). Also, some of the dialogue options you're presented with don't match what comes out of Shepard's mouth but that's a quibble.I also didn't like the fact that you have to hold down the space bar to do the tactical stuff during battles.
The game is fun, despite the prolonged dialogue that kills the momentum every now and then. One feature I really liked over DAO was the fact that Shepard actually spoke which I thought was a big improvement over the DAO's monoexpressioned nonspeaking main character. I really felt like I was guiding the story to some degree. Like DAO, ME1 appears to be a huge game with a good plot, great voicing, and visually excellent. It's a good game with an engrossing storyline and definitely worth picking up at its current pricing.
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