Thursday, March 29, 2012

Shatterblog!: Mass Effect 2 Review

Obviously, I reviewed the original Mass Effect, and now I've finished the second. Rather than review it and basically reiterate the things I already said in the first review, I'm just going to highlight the differences I found most noticable.
First, combat is largely improved. The controls got shimmied around, to a much more comfortable configuration, in my opionion. Q and E allowed to you select positions for your companions to take, R got changed to reload, grenade was removed, and shift got switched to menu, with space as sprint. Good stuff. The sprint is somewhat slower and longer, which can be super convenient. Weapons have shared ammo pickups, but each has unique ammo, no overheat system. It's much better.
The whole equipmesnt system is hugely better. The loot system in Mass Effect feels a little forced-RPG compared to 2. I like all the different guns, with actual different styles. I hated the M4 Machine Pistol SMG. The second one was my very favorite gun. It's name was Veera.

Only romance option for me. Miranda is obnoxious, Jack is out of her mind, and Morinth... just no.
I actually got pretty close to my companions this time around. I talked to everyone, and romanced Tali. I did every companion loyalty mission (they're fantastic by the way, I don't know if I missed them in ME or if they didn't exist) although I did fail stupid Thane's mission.

The removal of the stupid Mako sections was spectacular. I did no resource gathering in ME1, and every time I got in that tank I sighed a little. I did the Cerberus Network DLC, which included Project Firewalker. THAT is what the Mako sections should have been in ME1.
The resource gathering in ME2 was pretty cool, although I hate how necessary it was. My brother told me (fortunately), that if I didn't gather resources and upgrade the Normandy, my companions would die. What should be a fun optional minigame to upgrade powers and weapons becomes the difference between having your buddies back in ME3 and being sad and lonely.

The story might've been a tad better than the first. My brother and I disagree on this. Each story I think was compelling and well written etc. Each had one moment where my jaw literally dropped. I think that moment was bigger and better in ME2.
Overall, I think it improved on ME1 very well. All areas felt a little improved. 9.75/10.

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