I have just completed Mass Effect for the first time, 5 years after the initial launch. It was better than I expected, better than I read in the reviews, and better than I had hoped for. I am writing this while downloading and installing Mass Effect 2 and its related DLC. I intend to pick up the story as soon as I can.
I had tried to play Mass Effect once before, much closer its original launch date. For whatever reason, I got sidetracked and never completed what I had started. In fact, it was the memory of some old save files from my first play sessions that originally led me to pick this game back up. Sadly, those save files were not found, so I ended up playing through the game with a fresh character. It should go without saying that I want to do it all over again because I'm not satisfied with some of my choices, however I will continue my story without going for a perfect save game status. I want my character to play out just like he should. My current time investment of 19 hours will have to do, as I am just too eager to get into Mass Effect 2.
There are things about this game series that are very compelling to me. The relationships you form with your shipmates being number one. The sense of pacing the developers have put in the game is stellar. Interestingly, I was actually a little disappointed in some of the game mechanics. The actual shooting itself was competent enough, but the Mako driving sections were just tedious and time consuming. One area that I feel Bioware is to be applauded as the Journal and Codex. These two additions were handled well and really added to my experience. Alas, let me not turn this into a review. I've heard the action gets better in ME2, so I am looking forward to that. Beyond the action however, is the continuation of the story. It is the cinematics and storytelling that are so compelling for this franchise. I am genuinely excited to see what happens to Shepard and the crew. So it appears my installation of Mass Effect 2 is complete. Here we go!