Thursday, September 22

The Bias Corner: Mass Effect

Welcome to the first of two super editions of the Bias Corner.

I would like to start by introducing myself to the uninitiated: I am Dutch’s brother, Victor. I have generally similar opinions to Dutch, but on some key titles we differ greatly. For example Mass Effect 2. When Dutch first mentioned Mass Effect 2 on this blog, it was listed as one of the biggest disappointments of 2010 along with Dead Rising 2. Now I’m not saying Dead Rising 2 was the best game of 2010, but it was enjoyable. I am however saying that Mass Effect 2 is the first game that I'd call "Game of the Year," for two years in a row (remember that the PS3 version was released this year).

I have completed Mass Effect and its sequel (now to be referred as ME & ME2) 36 times in total. I own this game on all possible systems – yes, even though I do not own a rig capable of playing PC games - I do own them on PC. The sheer amount of times I have completed these two titles is a testament to their greatness. ME captured audiences with a new space opera to rival already established IP’s like Star Wars and Star Trek. The game did not only create a character that you could mould with good, bad or neutral decisions, but gave you a cast of NPCs to care about. Paramount to this, it gave us a universe to learn about and shape with your decisions.

I’ve invested (this is an estimate) 900 hours in the ME universe. That’s 37 and a half days, 54,000 minutes, 3,240,000 seconds I've thrown into this game; hell, it nearly cost me my marriage. That doesn’t even include ME: Galaxy (the underrated iOS game), three novels and two comic book series that I have also played and read. And how could I forget my Bioware limited edition N7 commander Shepard hoodie? Do we see where I’m heading here?........Obsession!

I don’t want to write a review that rivals the script for both games in terms of length; I just want everyone to go out there and buy this game so that they can experience the rich lore and solid gameplay for themselves. You can pick up both titles for a combined price of $28 at EB (on the 360). I've decided to jump into this space because I believe that reviewers - including Dutch - won’t enjoy games how you enjoy games. As an example, Viking: Battle for Asgard: the game has a metarating of 68, but it is super enjoyable. Dutch gave Mass Effect 2 8.5/10. That figure does no justice to Bioware's masterpiece! No matter what is said about this franchise, I will continue to invest my time and money (here’s looking at you, Mass Effect 3 N7 Collector’s Edition for $129 each on both console platforms) into it; and I think as a service to yourselves, you should too.

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