I’m now 83 hours and counting into Mass Effect Andromeda, and yes, there is a lot that still needs to be fixed…but, as far as the story goes, if you give it a chance it’s really a pretty epic storyline.
Andromeda is the fourth installment in the Mass: Effect series and was created by the same team behind Dragon Age: Inquisition. The sci-fi RPG debuted with generally favorable reviews, but much lower than what fans were hoping for.
Yes, there have been some pretty harsh criticisms about the game, including weak facial animation to unexpectedly poor dialogue. I agree with most of that, but not to a point where I thought the game wasn’t worth playing. But, have hope because in a statement published on Twitter, BioWare has thanked fans and indicated that it is listening to critiques. “We’ve had quite a bit of feedback,” it said. “Some of it positive, and some of it critical.
“Our team is listening, working around the clock to gather information and plan out solutions to improve and build on Mass Effect: Andromeda.”
Mass Effect is probably the most influential RPG series from developer Bioware. The original trilogy concluded with the story of Shephard and his battle with the Reapers. This time around Bioware went with an entirely new galaxy and story, resulting in Mass Effect: Andromeda.
So, we all know the shortcomings with the game, but let’s talk about the story. Mass Effect: Andromeda starts with the arrival to a new galaxy called Andromeda. This is a part of the Andromeda initiative by the four prominent Citadel Council races who send each of their 20,000 citizens on a giant vessel to look for new planets to populate. You are the main character and have been awakened from hypersleep, and it doesn’t take long when the Andromeda initiative tries to land on the first Earth-like planet and finds out that it’s inhabitable due to some ‘unforeseen events.’ The game is immensely satisfying to explore and the featured planets are huge and have plenty of side quests to keep you busy and playing with almost no end in site.
There are key ‘tone choices’ during the game’s scenarios that can alter the dialogue or story moments. I’m one of those who plays as the ‘good guy’ and hero, and sometimes, there is no ‘easy choice.’ When I was a Paramedic and just starting out I got some of the best advice from a TV show called, M*A*S*H…
“Rule #1 is: People die…and Rule #2 is: You can’t change rule #1.“
There are sometimes no easy choices when you are playing games like this, and I cringe every time I’m forced into making one of those decisions. How you play and talk to others will have a huge impact as the series goes on, and that’s part of the reason why I love it.
Now, let’s talk about the combat in Mass Effect: Andromeda. This part of the game is smooth and makes it really fun. It’s the standard third-person shooter at its core and a dynamic cover based system, but also tries to implement some RPG elements by giving us the ability to spend our skill points to either focus on improving certain aspects of the character and improve the ability of the squad mates.
Mass Effect: Andromeda is a solid game at its core, and I have enjoyed my time with the game. It’s unclear what the developer will adjust moving forward, but Andromeda’s story leaves itself wide open for future DLC.
Now, if you will excuse me I have another planet to explore and conquer…I mean liberate, I totally meant liberate.