Mass Effect 2 Impression

Contains minor Mass Effect 2 spoilers.

Though I was not able to actually play Mass Effect 2, I attended the closed showing of the game. Casey Hudson from Bioware headed the presentation, and it completely blew me away. Though some of the information and footage had already been revealed via the E3 preview trailers, there were plenty of new goodies to look at. Hudson noted that you will be able to import your save file from the first Mass Effect, and he said that they intended for you to take your character all the way through the trilogy.

The first thing I noticed was that the visuals are so much better. The first Mass Effect looked pretty good, but the sequel is just stunning.

In Mass Effect 2, humans have been disappearing throughout the galaxy, and Shepard is about to embark on a suicide mission to find them. But before doing so, he must assemble a team. The demo scenario showed Shepard recruiting an alien assassin who was about to strike at his next victim. The demo showed off some of the tweaks they’ve made to the conversation system, such as the ability to interrupt a conversation with an action or reaction by pressing the left trigger. In this instance, Shepard was able to cut off his interrogation and shove the target out a window.

The demo next showed off some of the much-needed and much-welcomed combat changes. The player actually has control over party members. Instead of just telling them to fall back, you can now command them to move to a certain point and use a certain ability. In this case, the player directed a party member to move near an enemy’s cover and yank him out with Lift. Shepard then fired a heavy weapon on the enemy as he sailed overhead. You could do that in Mass Effect, but only when your party members felt like it. Being able to do that at will is very thrilling.

The targeting system looks wonderful. You can mark targets while using cover, then pop up and take them out very quickly. The targeting system also allows you to hit specific parts of an enemy.

In the next scenario, an unknown force attacks the Normandy and rips it apart. Though the destruction of the ship was horrifying to watch, it did confirm that Liara and Joker will be in Mass Effect 2. The end of that scene seemed to show Shepard dying after saving everyone on board. Hudson said that the mission may or may not have been a suicide mission, and he left us questioning whether Shepard was alive or dead. He also said that the choices you make could lead to “more brutal consequences,” even your death in the game.

After the demo concluded, Jordan and I approached Hudson and swapped business cards. I was able to shake his hand, tell him that the game looks awesome, and thank him for all their hard work. And really, I mean it. Mass Effect 2 looks amazing, and it is quite possibly the best RPG demo on the show floor. It was well worth the trip, and I’m looking forward to playing the full game.

Leave a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.