Review by pfcstuck
"The most dissapointing sequal I have ever played."
I will start this review by saying that ME1 is one of my favorite games, and if this review seems harsh, it's just because I was so dissapointed with ME2.
First of all, the graphics are outstanding. Bioware outdid themselves with the character animations, detailed scenery, and exotic locations. Secondly, the sounds are to die for. The sound FX are perfect for every little detail of the game. Nothing is to loud or to soft, and everything sounds as you would it imagine it to sound in real life. The music score is origional and always fits into and enhances the plot of the storyline without overryding it. You can even enjoy your favorite tune in the captain's cabin. The autosave feature is alos improved because it saves after almost every major conflict, so you don't have to start mission from scratch after you've been playing for 2 hours.
Unfortunately, better graphics does not make a better game. The first game was memorable because it drew you into a whole new universe with an epic story and interesting side quests. The main story of this game might as well have been building your team. There is an overall goal of stoping the colectors which may or may not be in league with the reapers from the first game, but Bioware fails to capitalize on and develop the story line in any sort of interesting way. The sidequests feel mundane with thing like picking up groceries. (I'm serious, one of the side quests is to find groceries for the ship's mess) In fairness, some of the side quests are more interesting with activities like exploring crashed ships, investigating distress beacons, and killing monkies with a giant missile launcher (my favorite), but they lacked the excitement of the first game.
Bioware went in the wrong direction in ME2 with sevral of the most basic aspects of the game.
1. One Giant Hole in the Plot! - I'm speaking of course about needing to have ammunition and magazines for weapons. They tried to explain it away with some sort of heat controll BS, but we all know that the explanation makes no sense whatsoever. BRING BACK UNLIMITED AMMO IN ME3!!!!
2. Game Controlls - The controlls in ME1 had a unique feeling to them that did not mimic othe third person shooters. This helped contribute to the success of the game by making it diferent and stand out from other similar games. If I wanted to play Gears of War (a great game by the way), I would. The ploblem I'm having is Bioware trying to mimic the feeling og Gears in Mass Effect. It just doesn't belong here.
3. Player Downgrade - In ME1, your character steadilly became more and more powerful. In fact, you became almost too powerful for the enemy AI. Bioware attempted to correct this by making the enemy AI stronger. This would not have been a problem if they didn't make your character and your weapons weaker. Maybe they made the levels smaller in order to make up for a weaker character. Wait, I'm getting ahead of myself. See 8
4. Dictating Weappons - It is unavoidable, you will run out of ammo and have to switch weapons. This is Bioware's way of forcing you to diversify your tactics in order to play the game. The problem I have is that it feels like a cheap gimmic and the way they do it is in complete contradiction to the first game!!!
5. Lact of Storyline - This is THE unforgivible sin for this franchise!! Bioware was pretty crafty when they included most of the minor sidequest characters from ME1. It feels good to get some closure on events from the first game....or just to get an update. Unfortuntately ME2 lacks inspirational stories of it's own. The main quests are mostly to do with building your team and then gaining the loyalty of your team members. In fact, there are only 4 or 5 main story line missions that have to do with things other than your team. By the way, you now have an 11 member team. Most of them are boring and really don't do much for the story line. Once you gain their loyalty expect a couple more conversations and that's about it. They might as well tell you to go F yourself for the rest of the game (unless you are persuing romantic relations with them). Speeking of romance, they completely cut out the kissing and fondling part out of the sex scenes!!! You go to the cut-scene as the suicide mission starts, say some romantic or ackward things (based on the character) and then the scene ends and you're standing in front of the mysterious man. (or whatever he calls himself I didn't care enough to pay attention)
6. Probe Away - Planet scanning is probably one of the dumbest mini-games in the history of gaming!! Enough said.
7. Ok, maybe I need to say more....... Alot of people didn't like the Mako. It was mainly because you kept getting stuck trying to climb hills. You wasted HOURS trying to just get from one part of the map to the other. If they would just keep it on flat surfaces and let you blast enemies with your guns, it would have been all right. That is why I feel that they traded a lesser evil for the devil himself. There is no way to make meticulously scanning a planet fun at all. Shame on you Bioware for making us endure this travesty!
8. Lack of Epic Missions Battles - Do you remember fighting Saren in his final form on the burning citadel? How about exploring your way through an abandoned research compound infested with Rachni warriors? Don't expect anything that epic in ME2. The levels can be cleared in about 30 minutes. That's right just half an hour OR LESS for almost every level. The exception was the suicide mission. It took my 39 minutes. (I timed it) You just don't get enough time to engross yourself in the mission and therefore the game before it is all over and you're off to.......scan your next planet!
9. Lack of Character Customization - I'm not talking about appearance. You actually have more variables than ME1 because you can customize your armor color. I'm talking about inventory and powers. You don't even have hand grenades. I guess you had to trade them out for your heave weapons. You don't buy new armor. You buy or find pieces of your armor and can interchange them. There are only a few pieces you can find throught the game though. There also are verry few weapons around. You also only have a few powers to upgrade.
Overall this game did not live up to the hype. If it was an original I would not have been so hard on it, but as a sequal it dissapoints at almost every corner. So stand alone game I give it an 8 of 10, but as a sequal, 6 of 10.
Thank you for reading my review.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 03/10/10
Game Release: Mass Effect 2 (US, 01/26/10)
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