Mass Effect 3


You know you’re an adult when you realise that Return of the Jedi is the worst of the trilogy. It’s rip-roaring fun, saturated with kooky creatures and clever Force manipulation, but nobody (except poor, innocent old Darth Vader) dies. Mass Effect 2 was strongly influenced by Empire Strikes Back, which was an emotionally punchy film because of the sacrifice (albeit temporarily) both of Han Solo and of Luke’s hand.

Judging by certain trailers for the third game, the combat has been tightened up and tricked-out with a plasma-wrench. In earlier games, the combat was plagued by enemies that fell into either the “sort-of take cover and shoot you from a distance” camp or the “run and punch you in the face-bone” camp. It’s heartening to see enemies that look to be punishingly mobile, hold shields and attack in large groups.

Though of course that’s not really important, is it?
Weapons and armour can be customised more than ever before. At least a dozen different colours, as well a branching tree full of upgrades, can be applied to all sorts of different panels on armour suits and all the little metal twisty bits and bobs on the space-age weaponry.

Mass Effect 2 was interesting because the members of your party – the friends Commander Shepard made during the game – could die at the end. Mass Effect 3 is sure to have a whole lot of death. Planet Earth is under attack, being torn to shreds by the foes of the first two games. What remains uncertain is whether sad things will happen to the individual characters, because that’s where the real tears will come from.

Of course, what really matters in the end is the number of organisms you can have intercourse with. Because that’s what gaming is really all about.
This article first appeared in Issue 2, 2012.
Posted 4:53pm Sunday 4th March 2012 by Toby Hills.