Mass Effect: Andromeda Review

So everyone knows I played this game on my own Xbox one, using a bought copy, no preview copies here. I need a thumb up icon right there. I clocked in at around 48 hours of gameplay up to this point, and I still have a few missions left over, but not many.

So Andromeda, well you’re a headache would be a simple way to put it. It has its ups and downs, and I am not on about the story in that context. Given the fact most of the issues have been about the glitches and the issues surrounding this game, a topic I could devote an entire blog to, I will attempt to limit that issue down to a paragraph, but let us see how it goes first:

mass effect andromeda launch trailer

GOOD

Ambitious would be a word to describe this game, taking us out of the Milky Way galaxy to Andromeda is precisely that. The new galaxy map is a major ambition with the way your viewpoint streams from planet to planet or object to planet and whatever you encounter in each respective cluster. The view given is lush, gorgeous and eye-catching from the first time it happens when you visit each different world, moon, object, comet etc. It really captures the vast places you are seeing and exploring. The actual worlds themselves are beautiful and different from one another. The dry and heat of Elaaden to the jungle-like world of Havarl then to the snowy mountains of icy rivers and lakes of Voeld and the stuff in between.

If you do enjoy a good shooter the action is enjoyable and offers a challenge. You are required to think about what you’re against. A nullifier remnant will put its shields and only has its face free to shoot at unless you use a member of your squad to get its attention so you can rip its backside apart with a shotgun. To disabling and wiping out a destined as quick as possible before it disappears in its mist and hides their friends too. It makes you stop and make a decision rather than just going in full throttle and wiping the enemy clear from the area.

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BAD

Now we get to the bad stuff, so let us start with the bugs and glitches, and given the fact this game has been development for a considerable amount of time I find it unforgivable that these types of bugs and glitches are present. So a game that was in development for 5 years, was pushed back by a few months to be “polished” and yet these exist. Did the game testers at Bioware actually do anything, or did the developers not bother listening to their feedback and thought we can patch it later. Unacceptable is the word. No sound when you first enter areas, loading screens so long I could make my Sunday roast during it, conversation interaction with 2 Dracks, Black screen during conversations. Those are just scratching the surface, I had a lot more, the most annoying been locating some Kett tracks and the tracks were the same colour as the ground they were on. What was Bioware doing during the final 3 months of development, while they were polishing it? Were they polishing a turd because it appears that way?

The game almost feels like an attempt to do a greatest hits of the Mass Effect trilogy. Several missions and I include main quest missions in that, that felt like they were ripped straight from the trilogy. Going to the Archon’s ship was like been in the Collector base of ME2. The final fight felt like they trying to redo the major battle of Earth in ME3. Been on the old Remnant city felt like I was doing a redo of Ilos from ME1. There was a lack of originality, and given how the Mass Effect trilogy was mainly done under Drew Karpyshyns story, until the ending, which they botched to hell, it shows that they truly lack a creative figure head to lead them in the right direction story-wise, as the main story feels tapped together and lacks any sort of flow to it.

Finally, I come back to the animation when you go to each planet and object. Now yes, it is a wonder to see. But given that you can at the time go back and forth to planets, and not just once or twice but almost a dozen times maybe more. Peebee’s loyalty missions have you planet hopping like crazy, that animation then becomes tiresome. It looks great for a first second and third time, but if your getting in the flow of the story, or a side mission, of which some are very enjoyable, it breaks up that flow because you have to hear your Pilot tell you that you are heading for the LZ or landing zone in  sight. I frankly did not care once I got to seeing 5 or more so times and was unable to skip it. So for those who can only play the game in short bursts, or are restricted because of college, work or parents and you have to go somewhere, or been called down for your dinner and you gotta finish off now, it is incredibly annoying.

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Overall, as I said the top of this review, it is a headache. A whole new galaxy to visit and they put in 2 new intelligent species, no hints at others. Even if you are a lover of those Easter eggs and was hoping to spot some from the original trilogy then you will be grasping at straws. Despite me playing 48 hours of gameplay up to the point I began typing this review I hardly saw any.

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I loved the original Mass Effect trilogy, barring the ending. It was fun, engaging, gripping, it made you want to play more, the story grabbed you by the throat and told you to keep playing to find out more then loosened to do side quests.

However this game is not that, except enjoyable, in places. If you can play it on the PC, I bet its looks even more amazing on it, but unless you are an avid fan of Mass Effect like myself, only those will enjoy it the most, otherwise I would wait for further patching, and subsequently a drop in price.

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