By ERIC KLUMP
As March 6 approached, many gamers wondered if Mass Effect 3 would be a fitting end to this series and if it could innovate and improve on an already near-perfect game.
The Mass Effect series is arguably the defining series of this console generation. It gave gamers a deep and enthralling story that, through player-made decisions, creates unique game experiences for every player.
Game play in the series has always been fluid. The game balances RPG elements with third-person action beautifully. The graphics have always shown what a game can do in this console generation, nearing photorealism.
With all of this to consider, how can Mass Effect live up to its predecessors? More, how can it improve on the previous two games?
I’m glad to say that this game doesn’t disappoint, meeting and exceeding high expectations. While playing the game, one doesn’t feel like they are playing something revolutionary or new. Mass Effect 3 is like a stone that’s been polished into a gem.
The story opens with a grounded Captain Shepard being brought back into service to save the galaxy. The series’ antagonists, the Reapers, have mounted a full-scale invasion of Earth.
Shepard has to combat the whole band of Reapers with a much weaker crew. He gathers teammates and old allies as the game progresses, with the larger goal of uniting races from around the galaxy, using his greatest weapon: his voice.
Between cutscenes, players explore, investigate and battle to save the universe from the Reapers and the human-first group Cerberus.
As always in the series, battles rely not only on your shooting and/or biotic abilities but how you direct your team. Both are fluid and easy to use but hard to master, making each fight a rewarding challenge for players.
New to the series is the addition of multiplayer mode, allowing players across the world to play co-op. The mode and its unlockable classes are fun but a slight letdown. It seems like an afterthought that should have been either developed more or left out altogether.
Overall, Mass Effect 3 is an amazing game no player should ignore this year. I recommend playing the whole series.