Mass Effect 3 (and 2, I guess) should I buy it?

Mass Effect 3 is available right now from Amazon for $29.99.

I have heard some talk about the ending being a disappointment. Aside from that, what did everyone think of the game?

As a lover of Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, Knights of the Old Republic, and Dragon Age: Origins how would I like this game? I haven’t played part 2 yet, so if everyone says they are worth getting I would probably buy both at once and look forward to not buying any other games until the fall. That’s a lot of pressure on you guys, so give me good advice.

Also, I figure this thread serves as notice to people interested in the game that it’s on sale as a gold box deal today 4/24/2012 and you can pick it up at a good price.


Doesn’t look like you played 1.

I would suggest you do. I don’t know what platform you’re on, but only the Xbox and the PC have all three games available. PS3 only has 2 and 3.

The whole thing about the Mass Effect series is the fact that major and minor decisions in 1 carry over to 2, which influence 3. So playing through all 3 is the best way to experience that trilogy, IMHO.

The first 1 suffers from some clunky game machanics, but the story and characters are great, and more importantly, it does an incredible job of setting up the universe and introducing you to various factions/people/places.

The second game is by far the best of the three. It excells at giving you a sense of exploration, improves upon game mechanics and character development, and is probably the longer of the three games. Truly satisfying experience.

The third chapter suffers from some pacing issues, has an ending that can be charitably called nonsensical, but offers the best game mechanics yet, and although the ending to the game itself, IMHO, sucks, the endings to the relationships you’ve built through out the trilogy are, for the most part, satisfying and memorable.

Really, given your game preferences, this game should be right up your alley. It’s very much an action RPG with choices that tend to mean a lot for your character, and the story you help create.

The shooting mechanics might turn you off, I don’t know, but you cna always play it on easy, right?

EDIT: I re-read your post, looks like you played through 1. You didn’t happen to keep the save handy, did you? If you’re on PC you can always hit and download a save with the choices you remember making. But yes, Mass Effect 2 is a MUST. The best game of the trilogy, and once you played that, you kind of have to play 3 and see how it all turns out, no?

Oops. Sorry. I should have mentioned this.

No. I never played through 1. Since I currently use the PS3 I don’t have the option to play it. But, apparently, part 2 includes a comic that you walk through the plot and that lets you make (some?) game 1 decisions that affect part 2’s gameplay.

Thanks for all of your thoughts!

Despite people’s complaints (including my own) I don’t regret playing them for a second. Go get them!

Basically, what Quimby said.

I loved ME1, I thought ME2 was meh, and I thought ME3 was (overall) really great.

I had some problems with the way ME3 ended – which I won’t go into, other than to say I had problems with what I thought were plot holes – but everything leading up to that ending was great, and I still enjoyed the ending. It’s certainly one of the leading candidates for my game of the year. I’ve heard very few complaints about the game other than the last 15 minutes. Most people seem to agree that the 50 or so hours you’ll sink into the game before arriving at the finale are pretty great.

Plus, it’s become kind of a cultural phenomenon. At some point, when something becomes big enough, you want to try it out for yourself just to see what all the hubbub is about.

I would consider getting 1 on PC and playing it. Even if on low settings.

The comic book intro to 2 is ludicrous.

There is literally a scene where it essentially says:

This is the Krogan Wrex, he disagrees with you. Will you kill him?!

I mean what?

Wrex has a huge back story, the reasons why he might turn against you are nuanced, and there are more options than kill/don’t kill him in the actual game.

There’s just so much missed, it’s literally like walking into The Lord Of The rings movies at part 2. Who the heck is this Frodo guy and why should I care?

If you absolutely decide not to run through 1 (shame on you!), then 2 would indeed be the second best starting point.

I think that if you liked KotOR and DA: Origins, you have a very good chance of liking Mass Effect. I agree that you should play them in order. The first game really does familiarize you with the characters and the universe, and introduces major story elements that persist throughout the entire trilogy.

ME1 and 2 are on Amazon and Steam, and occasionally go on sale. If you have a remotely decent PC (built or purchased in the last 5-7 years), you should be able to play Mass Effect. I built my PC back in 2007 and I was able to play through all three with (virtually) no upgrades. (My video card burned out a few months ago and I was forced to get the nearest approximate replacement; I think it’s actually a little worse than my original card).

If you’re not in a hurry, you could buy ME3 now, and then wait for ME1 and 2 to go on sale on PC or something. Alternatively, since these sales recur every now and then, you could simply wait for ME1 to go on sale, and then go from there.

I’ve played all 3, finished 3 recently.

1 I played a very long time ago, when it first came out, so I don’t have much memory of it. It’s not to say it’s a bad game, just that my memory isn’t great. 2 doesn’t include the comic you’re talking about by default, that’s a DLC called “Origins”. I had to use that for my playthrough for 2, because I’d played 1 on the 360 and then switched to the PC for 2, so couldn’t carry my Shep over and I didn’t want to pay for and play 1 again before I could even get to 2.

2 I played more recently. That I found to be quite a good game. I found almost all of the quests, even the side-quests, to be quite compelling and the storyline to be quite good. The scanning of planets wasn’t bad, though after a while it did get a bit tedious.

3 I found to be a grind. The story was okay, though there were some VERY poorly scripted moments. But there was also some awesome and very well-written moments (I love the interactions between Garrus and Femshep, or Garrus and anyone really). I found the side quests to be an absolute grinding bore. You’ve got to save the earth OMG the entire galaxy is on the verge of destruction quick hurry save everyone oh wait can you please go on these five dozen fetch quests that if you don’t perform, your galactic readiness will go down.

I felt a bit disappointed at some of the railroading that carried over from choices you made in the second game. I like the idea that the choices in 2 affected your outcome in 3, but there were some points that were really annoying because no matter what you couldn’t affect them in the slightest. So to change my game 3 playthrough, I’m going to have to play through 2 again. That’s an investment of time I just don’t have, unless I download a savefile.

I like multiplayer. In fact, I keep playing that even though I’ve got no desire to replay the core game. It’s a fun co-op shooter, and they’ve just released a free update for it to add new characters, weapons and maps. Geth Engineer FTW! I honestly think it’s worth it just for the multiplayer.

I didn’t have the rage at the ending that a lot of the internet did, but I found it rather unsatisfying. And a couple of parts of it really confusing. Can’t say much more about it than you’ll have to make up your own mind.

I’ve only played the first one, and only plan to play the first one. The second and third games have a lot of story issues that would hurt my appreciation of the game as a roleplaying game.

If you liked Knights of the Old Republic then you should definitely try Mass Effect. You really should start at ME1 if at all possible. If not, then it’s okay to start with ME2 and do the Origins DLC, but really you should start with ME1.

Your actions in each game carry forward to the other games in a way that’s completely unmatched in any other series. One poster said they didn’t like being “railroaded” by their past actions in the previous games. I think of it having to live with the consequences (or benefits) of what you did. After all, if you can change it, did your decisions really matter? The storyline/consequences integration is so good from game to game that it’s like playing one giant superlong game.

There was one part in ME3 that hit me like a ton of bricks, it was the most emotionally impacting event that I’ve ever had in a video game. And it traces back to a mistake I made in ME2. If I’d handled it differently, I could have avoided the situation in ME3 almost entirely.

The ending is quite weird. My no-spoilers take on it is I think they were going for a Stanley Kubrick type ending, where it makes no sense if you take it literally but there is lots of evidence that something completely different and kind of awesome is happening behind the scenes. If the Kubrickian Ending theory is right, then the ending is 60% hyper-awesome and 40% letdown. They’re releasing “extended” endings as free DLC some time this summer, which they say will help clear up the confusion.

Yes, definitely play through from the beginning. The whole thing is full of threads about even minor characters and incidents that go way back to the beginning. You find yourself looking on the memorial wall in ME3 for the name of a guy who got gunned down in a cutscene in the first game.

I didn’t find ME3 tedious, certainly not as tedious as the hunt for resources in ME2. The general admixture of hope and doom was well balanced even as doom seemed to be winning. Then of course the veil fell away that separated the world we knew from the Deep Stupid. But that’s really only at the very end, so even if it burns you deeply as it did many of us, you’ll be glad for the whole journey.

Oh, I thought I should give my opinion on the multiplayer: It’s fun. It’s repetitive, but the ways you can grief other players are limited to just booting them from a game if the other three players agree. Otherwise, it’s set up so that everybody pretty much wins and the goal is to keep earning money that you spend on random packs of gear. You also get to try out various character classes and powers you would otherwise have to play the single player game all the way through to get a feel for.

The building of your gear is addictive. Sometimes you don’t get gear, but you unlock other class/race combos. You get one of each type to add to the general fight in the galaxy. The struggle up to Gold level looks pretty steep, but Bronze level is pretty fun anyway.