Massively Effective

I have just finished playing through Mass Effect. I picked it up on Thursday evening after work and have been running through the campaign. Granted, my first run through has been on casual difficulty, so some of the more difficult bosses have been made a bit easier, but there have been a few challenges. All in all, it took over 27 hours of played time to get through the game.

I was under the impression that it was a much longer story,  and perhaps it was. I simply followed all the main quest lines and a few sub-quests, while not doing all the sub-quests. I think it was intended for the player to do a lot more free form exploring. There are heaps of stars and planets to explore, which was part of the reason I thought the main story would be longer. I didn’t even find out the romance sub-plot.

Could this be one of the flaws of the game?

Possibly. It would probably have been good to have some more guidance quest-wise. No game is perfect and Mass Effect is no exception. There were a few other things that annoyed me. Driving the vehicle wasn’t something I really enjoyed, but had to do. There were a couple of times I had trouble finding my direction too. The map system probably could have been a bit better.

All the voice acting was top notch, and there were some fairly well known actors doing the voices. Keith David, Seth Green (Scott Evil, Oz from Buffy), Marina Sirtis (Troi from Next Generation) and Lance Henrickson (Aliens, Millenium.)  Lance Henrickson has a very distinctive voice which I recognized straight away, he’s one of my favorite actors. It took me a while to figure out the voice that sounded so familiar was Marina Sirtis, I didn’t check the credits at all. At one point I thought it might have been Claudia Black.

I think the fact that I was disappointed when the game finished, gives a pretty good idea of how much I enjoyed it. I got the same feeling of wanting more that I get when I finish a book that has really sucked me into its world.

It’ll probably be a few more years before that happens. As I understand it, Mass Effect is the first part in a trilogy of games that will unfold the fate of the galaxy in each game. Bioware has been Massively Effective with this first game. It’s a highly polished example of the work that they do. I can’t wait until the next game.