You are all in for a treat! This is a game that at first I had decided never to review because I never saw what was so special about it. The other reason was that it was on the 360. Now, it’s 2011, and it was released a few months back in January for the PS3. This is also a surprise to me since it is now one of my top 25 favorite games of all time. I won’t delay the tension any longer, here is my special review of Mass Effect 2! I was seriously surprised at how deep and great this game is. I kind of blew it off ignorantly due to the fact that it was a space shooter. However, it is from the critically acclaimed studio, Bioware, and winner of multiple Game of the Year Awards from many publications. It is definitely a game that is worth the money and time if you’re old enough. Let’s dive into this wonderful game simply known as Mass Effect 2.
The game takes place weeks after the ending of the first game as the ship “Normandy” is on the look for a remaining Geth ship. When they actually find one, they are then attacked by a Collector’s ship and, as a result, get heavily damaged. As Commander Shepard is getting everyone out of the ship, he then is forced to help the pilot of the ship, Joker, escape. After he gets Joker into an escape pod, Shepard is sadly blasted into space by the Collector’s ship. Two years later, Shepard wakes up in a bed in a medical ward on a Cerberus ship. Shepard is now working for Cerberus and is assigned to get a team of soldiers to take care of the Collectors who are planning something mysterious. This game has a really great story with deep and complex themes of politics and the different alien races, as well as the characters’ philosophies on life. This is a sign that this sci-fi shooter would be good, since it actually has a really good story that isn’t bland or something we have seen before. It just shows how good Bioware is at their job.
There is a lot to cover in this section of the review so let’s get to the gameplay. The gameplay is in the form of a third person sci-fi shooter with a mix of RPG, team-based shooters, and free-roaming elements. You take control of Commander Shepard and have a good array of weapons to use, like the normal machine gun, pistol, and shotgun. The weapon variety is basically the same, but you can always find better versions of those guns, or upgrade the default weapons you get. Each character can carry about two guns, with the exception being you, of course. You can get preset armor from preorders and DLC, but you can also find customized armor to give you more speed, defense, headshot percentage, and melee attack power. When you begin the game you can actually upload the data from the last game if you have the Xbox360 version. In the PS3 version, you just start from scratch. You can also choose what class of soldier you want to be in, like Warrior, which gives you better strength in fighting. Each class gives you specific abilities that are pretty fun to use in the game. When you go to different planets, you get sent down with two other teammates. This is where the squad-based shooter mechanics come into play. You can move your two comrades to different areas on the field and can use their specific abilities in battle. Each character has an array of moves, like a strong power shot, using their cybernetic enhancements to toss enemies around, using those enhancements to blow people away, doing a stealth kill, summoning an AI assistant, and many others. You also get multiple abilities, like I said, depending on what your class is. Of course, this wouldn’t be a Bioware game without having multiple endings and multiple paths that you can take throughout the game, by what your actions are. When you talk to ANYONE, you can choose different options on what to say, kind of like that bad game, Alpha Protocol. However, in this game, it’s done a lot better. Even coming down to the final level, where you need to decide who does what, will alter the ending of the game. There are also personal missions you can take on with your teammates that will make them even closer teammates and will show more character development. It’s nice since in a lot of games I see, they have a bunch of characters, but you only really care about a few of them. In this game however, I listened and cared for every teammate I had, and did all of their personal missions just so I could hear them talk and develop as characters. You can even fall in love and have a romance with one of the many female teammates. Just be careful what you say.