Your 9600GT is about 8 “levels” better than a 6800GT, per tomshardware You’re fine.
I hope the predisposition isn’t as restricting as it sounds.
So I never played the original Mass Effect, but I’m starting to think that was maybe a mistake. Can somebody offer a quick-and-dirty overview of what the game is about and how it plays (I don’t care about being spoiled or anything like that)?
The gameplay is, mostly run and gun style combat with some enjoyable combat mechanics and some really enjoyable ‘magic’ and ‘technomagic’ powers to use against all enemies and robotic type enemies, respectively. Guns do not have ammo only heat, which means you just have to let them cool off a bit after long bursts, and they’ll jam up for a little while if they fire for too long. Conversations are pretty fast flowing and don’t have dialog menus and cut-scenes are all with the in-game engine so that they don’t drag you out of the game each time and make you smash immersion.
The plot deals with you becoming the first human in an ultra-elite kinda top secret group of operatives and uncovering a rogue agents who is operating under the control of a race of evil ancient sentient machines who aim at coming back to our galaxy and purging absolutely all life. Along the way you need to unravel that mystery, prove to the galactic council that the rogue agent is a bad guy, and then stop him before the universe gets made dead. It works in traditional Bioware format, in that there are several ‘hubs’, generally pretty small, that you go to and run missions. It doesn’t feel anywhere near as constricting as Dragon Age or as obvious as KoTOR, and I don’t know why. There is also a kind of side-quest where you have to scan planets/search them for random metal deposits and such, and a few quests where you find crime syndicates and such on various planets and, well, make them dead too.
I’m probably not doing it justice, but it’s an awesome game with a great story and easily as much fun as, say, Fallout 3. For my money, it is the clear, clear superior to Dragon Age.
First thing I would recommend is taking a gander at the wiki page for a game over view. Mass Effect
Mass Effect is a third person shooter/action RPG, with an extremely heavy story component, that takes place in a space opera universe. You play “Commander Shepard”, the first human member of a group called SPECTRE, which is kind of a specially deputized enforcer of “The Council”, the ruling intergalactic government. (SPECTRE’s are basically “Space Cops”.)
The vast majority of the game involves you hunting down a fellow SPECTRE agent by the name of Saren who’s gone rogue and allied himself with “The Geth”, a race of machines who are only interested in wiping out all organic life in the galaxy. The Geth were originally droids who were designed by one of the alien races in the game and who eventually developed artificial intelligence, at which point they rebelled against their masters and attempted to kill every one.
Needless to say as you play through the game you discover exactly why Saren has done this and you begin to uncover a much broader conspiracy and bring it to light. (Hint: The Geth aren’t the greatest danger to the universe.)
I can’t really do the games story justice in just a few paragraphs. It’s uncommonly well told and the universe is much deeper and more complex than it seems at first glance. The characters, (including your own party members of course), are well drawn with conflicting motivations and it has some some of the best dialogue I’ve ever seen in a game.
Gameplay wise however, it needs to be pointed out that it can be a very frenetic shooter, though you can augment your abilities depending how you outfit your party class wise.
I’d also recommend checking out the Mass Effect Wiki. It’s pretty extensive and it can give you a good idea of what the game and universe is like with a little bit of looking around.
Agreed completely though. It’s difficult to do Mass Effect justice in just a few paragraphs. The universe has a very real verisimilitude to it, and a subtlety that I can’t kind quite put my finger on. I loved Dragon Age, but Mass Effect is hands down on e of my favorite games of all time. I was blown away by how the story was told the first time I played it, and it holds up remarkably well on subsequent playthroughs.
The universe that Bioware has designed is just so interesting, and I when I play the game I just want to know more about it, the same way any well designed science fiction or fantasy world pulls in the reader/viewer. This franchise is ripe with storytelling possibilities.
I do have to say that it’s got the most enjoyable combat out of any Bioware game I’ve ever played, and one of the better stories.
As story-driven games go I’m not quite sure how I’d list them. Probably something like:
And what would you put in between BS and ME?
Torment has the best story of any game I’ve ever played, no argument there. It set a standard ten years ago that has yet to be matched. (I still remember some of my conversations with Dak’kon, and Annah to this day, which is no small feat.)
Bioshock… ehh. I feel like I’m going to be tarred and feathered for this, and I liked it, but I never got the excitement over the story in that game. It’s impact all hinges on the “twist” which didn’t impress me that much to be honest. The integration of objectivism was interesting, and the implications about “free will” in a game wasn’t lost, but I still feel it was a FPS with an above average story. No great shakes.
This isn’t a Bioshock thread though so, different strokes…
You far under rank Mass Effect though.
Hrmmm… not to hijack this thread much further, but I’d put a few games like Grim Fandango and Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers, Silent Hill 2 and maybe even Baldur’s Gate II , dunno bout that though.
I loved Dragon Age because of the tactical combat, I loved Mass Effect because of the story, characters, and cutscenes. No real preference on which was better, I am just ridiculously glad that I got the former only a few months ago, and the sequel to the latter is already pre-loaded on Steam.
One other uncommonly awesome thing about Mass Effect was the voice acting, particularly if you were playing the female Shepard. To this day it’s the only game that I’ve watched and listened to all of the voiceovers for, rather than just reading the subtitles and clicking through.
Apparently the voice talent for ME2 is just as good, if not better, than ME1, they’ve got a few big names to do the voices.
What I do wonder about is the role of Cerberus in the sequel. If you dug a bit deeper in ME1 you found out that Cerberus
transformed a colony into husks, lured Admiral Kahoku’s marines into a thresher maw nest, killed them all then killed him, and if you have the sole survivor background (like my main fella does) it was responsible for murdering your unit on Akuze after pulling the same stunt. I’ll be a bit annoying if there’s no answering for this stuff in the sequel, especially after you’ve given them a good pasting in the Hades Gamma cluster.
Awesome. I’m tight on cash and I still think I’ll wait a bit and buy the game (and hint guide, I am such a noob) on Ebay or something, but this at least gives me back some of the excitement I’d lost for the sequel.
That is impressive.
I won’t be able to pick the game up until this weekend, but it’s definitely at the top of the list now.
That’s a helluva lot of 100s. These critics genuinely believe there’s nothing that could have been done better? Really? I bet Bioware’s having a gigantic grand slam release party.
Well, some of those will be scaled up from 5 star reviews, which arguably encompass everything from 80-100%. And of course, seeing as high scores appear first in popular aggregator services like metacritic, there’s actually a fairly strong motive for review sites to give 100% scores. It’s like really easy SEO.
We’re already on page 2 of pre-release talk. Will this also be the thread for currently-playing chatter? One page isn’t much, but Dragon Age went to several pages pretty quickly.
You can always start another thread, but I’d wager that this one will start to expand as more people play the game.
Installing to hard drive now. Sweet!
I was planning on this being the post-release talk thread too, but whatever happens.
Edit: Big shock, the Cerberus Network is unable to be connected to for about half the people who bought it, and there’s a bug with the PC collectors edition where the Cerberus code redeems the armor instead of the network you need to install it.