Mass Effect review
September 29, 2008

I forgot to mention how much of a wanker Joker is.

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Suskie Suskie - September 29, 2008 (07:28 AM)
This is much better than my terrible Mass Effect review; I wish I could change it but it's a staff review and I can no longer touch it :(
Lewis Lewis - September 29, 2008 (10:42 AM)
I really liked both yours and Gary's reviews of the 360 version.
Suskie Suskie - September 29, 2008 (11:08 AM)
Weird, because I disliked both. And I especially hate how my Mass Effect is the second highest-hitting of my reviews (after Sins, which is only highest because it was quoted on the official website).
Lewis Lewis - September 29, 2008 (12:46 PM)
Gary's reminded me a bit of Kieron Gillen's Deus Ex review that won him that award, whatever it was. Have a read, if you haven't seen it before. The 'rewind...' bits were brought to mind with Gary's 'before that...' ponderings.

Honestly? I'm not too sure what to think of my own review. I was going to opt for a cheesy concept-type piece, based around "you are Captain Shepard..." to emphasise the immersion factor that ramps Mass Effect up to the head of the pack. Instead, I decided it's good enough not to spoil everything by writing something so sycophantic, so I went more for a 'this is what you do, this is why it works' sort of approach. In retrospect, I'm not sure whether or not it was the right decision.

I also think I'd have done well to wait another day before writing the review (completed it at around 2am, slept for 6 hours, got up and wrote the article), because just a few hours later I'm no longer sure it does eclipse Bloodlines in the action-RPG stakes (ha! Stakes, vampires, get it?). It's infinitely fancier and more polished, but there's something totally enchanting about Troika's last breath. It sucks (god, I'm full of them) you into its world in a really seductive way that I've never experienced outside of film noir before. I might write a whole other piece about that, though.

In other words: cheers for reading.
Suskie Suskie - September 29, 2008 (01:08 PM)
I have a number of problems with my own review, partly with the assembly line story details pouring out of the first few paragraphs, then the awkward transition to gameplay elements. It's just not a review that flows, and while I think I make my point, I don't do so very passionately. The one thing I should have done before quitting staff was rewrite this thing, because in its current state, I'd say it's far below my standards.

As for EmP's... well, I feel like an asshole anytime I attack one of his reviews because he's usually so good, but in my eyes his Mass Effect is the most pretentious thing he's ever written. I could elaborate but I don't think anyone's asking for further insight.

Anyway. First things first, you should play Mass Effect again, as I can safely say it's the only game I've ever played that I enjoyed MORE on the second run. Not only can you approach the Sheperd character from an entirely different moral standpoint, but it'll give you a chance to better appreciate the intricacies of how the game plays. Jack the difficulty up, you'll see what I mean.

Also, I want to point out this blog entry that I believe I wrote before you were a regular here, and certainly before you showed any interest in Mass Effect. It's about the prequel book that was published to coincide with the game's release; basically, while it's no literary masterpiece, it's absolutely worth reading if you want a deeper understanding of the Mass Effect universe. I learned a lot reading it.
Lewis Lewis - September 29, 2008 (01:33 PM)
I don't feel ready to approach it again just yet. I like to take my time between plays of this type of game, to forget the character I've forged so I can start completely afresh with ease.

I think I may go through Bloodlines again first, trying to do as many of the sub-quests as I can find. Maybe Fallout 3 and Far Cry 2 will be ready for playing then. I absolutely can't wait for either. Seriously, in all honesty, I fully expect them to emerge as two of the leading games of all time.

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