Well I noticed all the hate on the FFXIII-2 trailer which bothered me because of everyone's love and respect for ME:2. I'm going to say first of all I mostly play game's for the story and often find myself bored or annoyed with the actual game part of a game as it is blocking me from progressing the story. That being said I am rather shocked that people generally dislike FFXIII and love ME2. Here's how I see it.
ME:2 Your story is somewhat unique as you can 'decide' things which affect your story. The details of your story are affected but at the end of the day we all arrive at the same place. This is fun and good for me. However, learning about the characters in the game I found extremely boring and hard to force myself to do. For example you walk up to Miranda. "Lawson, how are you?"...pause.."good to see you commander" pause....'How are things going?' pause....'well my father is a really rich man who made me in a lab..' 10 minutes later and 2 choices of response you now know Miranda's life story, how she feels about everything she just told you, are BFFs. Now all that's left is to do her mission, have sex, and call it a game. Lawson was a good character no doubt and she is the best example ME:2 has to offer as far as development goes. The others have decent stories though I found myself extremely bored listening to most of the characters share the life stories and emotions simply because I asked them 'how are you doing?'
FFXIII: This game is Lightning's story which by itself means the story will be presented differently. You don't decide if Lightning is going to be a dick or a nice person Lightning already is Lightning. You really see the whole thing from Lightning's perspective even as you leave her to go move other characters thru the game, well atleast I did. Starting out I was annoyed with most of the cast, thought Vanille was annoying, wanted to punch Snow in the face for being such an idiot, wondered why the hell Sazh insisted on following me around. The game starts off with a bang and sets you up for what you are going to spend the next 60 hours doing, which is finding Lightning's sister while the 1984ish police state attempts to maintain control. The whole game's story however is really grounded what happened a few weeks prior to the game's start in the 13 days leading up to a festival that all of the cast happened to attend before they knew each other. The story is told as you progress thru very linear (grr) levels and rewards with cut scenes and cinematics. As the characters interact with each other the begin to realize how connected they actually are. Soon I began to find myself attached to these guys and surprise Lightning does too. The voice acting was fantastic in FFXIII as well which really helps bring out the complexity of scenes. In particular the akwardness of Lightning finally opening up to Snow and trying to tell him she's ok with him marrying her sister in the magnificent cut scene close to the finish of the game. To finish it off FF brilliantly has the storyline in general tell you about Lightning herself. The theme of the game is about being closing your emotions off to people around you and having courage to put it all out there. I could spend a long time analyzing the game's story but that's off topic.
The characters in ME:2 just aren't as interesting in my opinion because all of the interact with you the same. You want to know their life story? Ask them and they will tell you right away? Want to get in bed with them? Complete their bonus mission. Both games do a pretty good job at telling you what's going on as you are progressing thru the game it's just when you want to find out more about the people you're progressing with that ME:2 falls short. I'd love to hear people who played thru both games opinions on both. I realize FF has melodrama but it's not bad when you are playing thru the game and the lines are put into context. Here's a few video's to illustrate my point. If anyone can find a great moment in Mass Effect 2's story to share that would be great but I don't really remember a stand out point.