‘Mass Effect Andromeda’ Review

Gaming Videogames

 

This March, EA/Origin/Bioware released the new Mass Effect Andromeda.

The Mass Effect series has been an enormous success for EA/Origin/Bioware and the anticipation for a new title has been at a fever pitch. After the 3rd installment of the series five years ago, some fans were less than enthusiastic about the death of the lead character Sheppard. Considering the number of hours gamers spent playing the character, it would seem justified. Thankfully, Bioware did not decide to bring him back in a ridiculous attempt to retcon the prior story instead, players in Mass Effect Andromeda get a choice of playing either a male or female protagonist, Scott or Sarah Ryder. Their father Alec Ryder was one of the first people ever to go through a Mass Effect relay and has reached the rank of N7. He has decided to join the Andromeda initiative and take his two children along.

What first struck me at the outset of this game was the great sci-fi feel that it has. The feeling of exploration is something we are seeing in several titles now, one of the most recent being the debacle that was No Man’s Sky. At its best, Mass Effect Andromeda reminds players of some of the great sci-fi stories and series of the past, like Deep Space Nine, Babylon 5, and Stargate. Some reviews and players have balked at the graphics and animations in the game, but I have to say that, even though they are not ideal, I did not feel that they took me out of the gameplay or soured me in any way. The gameplay falls in line with the previous titles which are intuitive and easy to use. The size and breadth of Mass Effect Andromeda are quite impressive. What really sticks out is the quality of the combat in Mass Effect Andromeda. Battling alien and opposing forces is fluid and truly enjoyable.

In total Mass Effect Andromeda is a must for sci-fi fans looking for a deep RPG. Hopefully, Bioware will fix animation issues in future patches as that is the only thing keeping this game from being a solid 9 or 10. That being said, I look forward to spending many more hours working on the Andromeda project.

The game is available currently on all Next Gen platforms, PC, Xbox One, and PS4 for $59.99.

A copy of this game was provided by EA/Origin/Bioware.

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3 thoughts on “‘Mass Effect Andromeda’ Review

  1. About time someone gave a positive review for Mass Effect. I’m enjoying this game too and the space combat and exploration are top notch.

  2. I agree completely. Yeah, the animations aren’t perfect, but I don’t even notice them anymore and am totally absorbed in the game.

  3. I’d say the game suffers in exactly the same way Dragon Age: Inquisition suffered: a slightly too slow tutorial intro, and an initial “open-world” zone (Hinterlands for DA:I, Eos for ME:A) that needs to come with a label, “Get in, get out, nobody gets hurt.” Because I was familiar with the Bioware tendency to expect you to come back later to their initial open world zone from DA:I, I moved smartly through Peebee’s intro, Drack’s intro, reactivated all three monoliths, fired up the vault, and founded Prodromos without much in the way of sidequesting. Which is the way to go with this…settle Eos and then come back later…you’ll know when, your crew will tell you.

    After the initially slow start, the game really picks up, with better writing than previous Mass Effects, and even better balance of humor and drama than DA:I. Are there technical glitches? Yes, but no worse than any Obsidian Studio produced game…and I still play Fallout: New Vegas from time to time, so I’m really familiar with “save early, save often”.

    Those slow intro’s are 90% of why (IMO) the last couple Bioware efforts haven’t scored as well. Critics play the first 8 hours, aren’t much of anywhere and are spinning their wheels, so all they can do at that point is sit and stew about technical flaws . And yes, out of the box, I was calling it Mass Effect: Uncanny Valley, but by the time I finished the first post-Eos golden world quests (one of two worlds, dealers choice) I didn’t even notice the animation (aided by the fact that by that time I was well into what is now an epic crush on PeeBee).

    Also, huge amounts of humor and character development occur in the Nomad. Dialogs fire off fairly quickly, about every 5 minutes or so…Bioware learned from DA:I about 15 minute resetting timers…and only in the Nomad, so you need to drive a lot, no matter WHAT PeeBee thinks about your driving.

    The game is definitely playable and replayable, and is clearly meant to be played past the “ending”, probably with DLC, the way ME:2 was. At this point *I’d* give it an 8/10 (10/10 for PeeBee).

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