My friends, ask me why I love Mass Effect so much? The ending isn’t any great, it doesn’t do the franchise any justice. I tell them, did you really play this game? Did you really play this game that just the last 5 minutes of this amazing franchise affected your views on this game?
I love this franchise and there’s nothing you say that will change my views about it. For me this game is much bigger than just mere 5 minutes, the 5 minutes are not the fault of the game, but the developers are at fault there.
For those of you who don’t know what Mass Effect is, it is an AAA Gaming title, the first part was released in the year 2007 and consists of three parts.
The story of the game is as follows, you are Commander Shepard, a soldier in the Alliance Military, commanding one of the flagships, The Normandy, set in a futuristic world where the humans have ventured into the far reaches of space and has encountered different species across the universe. The game starts off with you landing on a planet and finding an ancient alien technology (To not ruin the game, I’ll not delve deeper into the story) that sets off a whole set of events that eventually brings you to the third game, the battle for our home planet, the place where humanity started off from, the main objective of the third game, Take. Earth. Back.
This game does an amazing job at character development. I suggest playing it from the first installment to experience it to the fullest and just feel the massiveness of the playable universe. Considering you play from the first part, you’ll be asked to design your own character as you would in any RPG game, select some characteristics that define the background of ‘your Shepard’ and these decisions now have impact later in the game.
During the course of the story and the game, you will be faced with making extreme and tense decisions, life and death situations, decisions that can decide the fate of an entire civilization, an entire race, the entire universe. All of these decisions too, have an impact in the game, later into the story.
Along with you, is an elite crew, with many different abilities that you must use to your advantage. But the story plays out so well on its character development, this crew becomes more than just AI on the battlefield, they become your friends, you get to know them, they get to know you. You’ll find out their darkest secrets and they’ll get to know yours and when the inevitable comes, you’ll find yourself mourning them, you’ll find yourself thinking, “if I hadn’t done this, they would still be there.” It is a game that actually teaches you what it feels like to lose someone close to you, it makes you go through with the pain and it will make you reminisce on the good old memories.
The game also brings out the personality in you, what kind of a person are you? Will you save an entire civilization at the cost of the security of the universe? or will you sacrifice that civilization for the greater good? This is an example of the kind of decisions that you make and it brings out the worst or best in everyone.
Mass Effect has one of the most engrossing stories in the gaming industry, it will make you want to laugh, it will make you want to cry. Even years after finishing this game, I look at the icon in my Steam library and remember the hours I spent with my crew, decisions that I am proud of and decisions that I regret, people I could save and the people I lost.
This is why I love this game, this franchise, so much and quoting famous words from another amazing franchise, whenever someone asks me,”After all this time?” my reply, no matter how far ahead in the future will definitely be,”Always.”