@Irishdoom: Thanks for that. I'm probably in the minority but I still love ME1 the most of the three games. It has some huge issues for sure, but I think it succeeded the most in creating that feeling of amazement that suits a space opera and offers the most coherent narrative vision, I think. It's sense of atmosphere is, in my opinion, just a notch above the other games not in small part because of the amazing soundtrack (ME2 and ME3 have decent soundtracks but they sound a bit more generic with most of the tracks having an orchestral arrangement). Also, it is the only game of the three that paints these incredible vistas when you get to visit all the different planets.
About the elevators, I loved them. I remember right before ME2 came out some dev said something about having listened to user feedback and since users supposedly hated the elevators, they took them out. Then, when ME2 came out, we discovered that what he actually meant was that they replaced the elevator sequences with a schematic representation of an elevator moving through an elevator shaft. Good times were had on the BioWare forums that day.