Why Mass Effect 2 was a disappointment, but why ME3 will be great

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Posted by Jayross (2365 posts) -

Why Mass Effect 2 was a disappointment, but why Mass Effect 3 will be amazing:

    

Preface:

I am going to be comparing the games purely on story. There are clear technical improvements, graphical improvements, and dumbing down between the two games, but those are irrelevant to this discussion. The story of Mass Effect 1, Mass Effect 2, and Mass Effect 3 are the only things that matter in this post.
  

Mass Effect 1

 
The first Mass Effect had the advantage of being a totally new world, with new creatures and technology, but it doesn't use those as a crutch; and also has an engaging story full of twists and hard decisions to make. 
 
Let's start with the bullet points of significant plot twists.
 
  • Saren kills Nhilius and gets in a super strange space-ship, Sovereign.
  • "the beacon" is discovered by Shepard, which has some strange effect on him.
  
Then there is some basic character recruitment stuff which will give you your crew members. 
 
  • Shepard becomes a Spectre
 
Shepard also learns about the protheons, and their viscous cycles of domination. 
  After some adventuring and deciding the fate of an entire species,  as well as sacrificing one of your crew members: 
 
  • Shepard learns that Saren is a tool of the Reapers.
 
Suddenly the guy we thought was the "big bad" now is the "medium bad" and there is an even larger, more sinister thing at work. 
 
  • Reapers built the mass relays
  • The citadel is a relay.
  
Shepard learns most of that from a cool conversation with Vigil
 
Then the player has to defend the Citadel: We fight Saren and destroy Sovereign. The player also has to decide the fate of the Council, and also who they want to nominate for the position. 
 
What a ride, right? Let's see what ME2 has for us... 
 

Mass Effect 2

 
Mass Effect 2 has one of the coolest openings I've played. It is pretty epic, and sets up the character creation/recreation really well, but it is downhill from there... 
 
  • The Illusive Man is introduced, but we don't know his motives. Will he turn on Shepard? Who knows!
  • Shepard has to collect some people.
  • Collectors are collecting people for something... who knows what...
  • Shepard has to collect some more people.
  • Shepard has to collect a few other people.
  • Don't forget to upgrade your ship... yeah..
  • We the data chip or whatever to use the Omega 4 Relay.
  • We fight through the collector ship, maybe some of your people die, or maybe they don't. 
  • Giant robot that runs on human blood.
  • Robot dies.
  • Decision: Explode, or irradiate? There's no way to know how either choices will effect the game, and they only change how the Illusive Man reacts to you.
  • Oh noes, a lot of ships be attacking teh universe!
 

Discussion

 
I assume that after reading that, you can understand how the story differs between the two games, and how the first Mass Effect was much more engaging in terms of pure plot and story.  
 
Mass Effect 3 did excel in its large selection of flushed out characters, but when the whole game revolved around those characters, with very little other story stuff happening, it greatly diminishes the story experience.  
 
Good movies, books, T.V. shows, and comics, all have great characters, but also have an engaging story that is enhanced by those characters.  
 

The Mass Effect 2 story just feels weak.

 

But because of Mass Effect 2, Mass Effect 3 will be the best Mass Effect game.

 
Movies and books all have a beginning, middle, and end. If you look at the Mass Effect series, you can see that starting to form. Here, take a look: 
 
In books and movies: (commonly)
 
Beginning: The basic plot and characters are introduced. The plot is clearly established as the momentum for the story. 
Middle: The characters are flushed out, and the plot is further developed. 
End: Now we know the characters, so the plot can take center stage. 
 
Mass Effect 1 and Mass Effect 2 very easily fit into those first two spots. 
 

Now that the characters have been flushed out and established in Mass Effect 2, Mass Effect 3 can now focus on an engaging story line, and less about character recruitment.

 
Thanks for reading!  
 
~Jayross 
Check out my other interesting blogs! 
http://www.giantbomb.com/profile/jayross/blog/
#1 Posted by Jayross (2365 posts) -

Why Mass Effect 2 was a disappointment, but why Mass Effect 3 will be amazing:

    

Preface:

I am going to be comparing the games purely on story. There are clear technical improvements, graphical improvements, and dumbing down between the two games, but those are irrelevant to this discussion. The story of Mass Effect 1, Mass Effect 2, and Mass Effect 3 are the only things that matter in this post.
  

Mass Effect 1

 
The first Mass Effect had the advantage of being a totally new world, with new creatures and technology, but it doesn't use those as a crutch; and also has an engaging story full of twists and hard decisions to make. 
 
Let's start with the bullet points of significant plot twists.
 
  • Saren kills Nhilius and gets in a super strange space-ship, Sovereign.
  • "the beacon" is discovered by Shepard, which has some strange effect on him.
  
Then there is some basic character recruitment stuff which will give you your crew members. 
 
  • Shepard becomes a Spectre
 
Shepard also learns about the protheons, and their viscous cycles of domination. 
  After some adventuring and deciding the fate of an entire species,  as well as sacrificing one of your crew members: 
 
  • Shepard learns that Saren is a tool of the Reapers.
 
Suddenly the guy we thought was the "big bad" now is the "medium bad" and there is an even larger, more sinister thing at work. 
 
  • Reapers built the mass relays
  • The citadel is a relay.
  
Shepard learns most of that from a cool conversation with Vigil
 
Then the player has to defend the Citadel: We fight Saren and destroy Sovereign. The player also has to decide the fate of the Council, and also who they want to nominate for the position. 
 
What a ride, right? Let's see what ME2 has for us... 
 

Mass Effect 2

 
Mass Effect 2 has one of the coolest openings I've played. It is pretty epic, and sets up the character creation/recreation really well, but it is downhill from there... 
 
  • The Illusive Man is introduced, but we don't know his motives. Will he turn on Shepard? Who knows!
  • Shepard has to collect some people.
  • Collectors are collecting people for something... who knows what...
  • Shepard has to collect some more people.
  • Shepard has to collect a few other people.
  • Don't forget to upgrade your ship... yeah..
  • We the data chip or whatever to use the Omega 4 Relay.
  • We fight through the collector ship, maybe some of your people die, or maybe they don't. 
  • Giant robot that runs on human blood.
  • Robot dies.
  • Decision: Explode, or irradiate? There's no way to know how either choices will effect the game, and they only change how the Illusive Man reacts to you.
  • Oh noes, a lot of ships be attacking teh universe!
 

Discussion

 
I assume that after reading that, you can understand how the story differs between the two games, and how the first Mass Effect was much more engaging in terms of pure plot and story.  
 
Mass Effect 3 did excel in its large selection of flushed out characters, but when the whole game revolved around those characters, with very little other story stuff happening, it greatly diminishes the story experience.  
 
Good movies, books, T.V. shows, and comics, all have great characters, but also have an engaging story that is enhanced by those characters.  
 

The Mass Effect 2 story just feels weak.

 

But because of Mass Effect 2, Mass Effect 3 will be the best Mass Effect game.

 
Movies and books all have a beginning, middle, and end. If you look at the Mass Effect series, you can see that starting to form. Here, take a look: 
 
In books and movies: (commonly)
 
Beginning: The basic plot and characters are introduced. The plot is clearly established as the momentum for the story. 
Middle: The characters are flushed out, and the plot is further developed. 
End: Now we know the characters, so the plot can take center stage. 
 
Mass Effect 1 and Mass Effect 2 very easily fit into those first two spots. 
 

Now that the characters have been flushed out and established in Mass Effect 2, Mass Effect 3 can now focus on an engaging story line, and less about character recruitment.

 
Thanks for reading!  
 
~Jayross 
Check out my other interesting blogs! 
http://www.giantbomb.com/profile/jayross/blog/
#2 Posted by myalt22 (101 posts) -

That was a very interesting read. I loved ME2, but I never realized how dull it was story wise until you compared it with ME1.

#3 Posted by AlisterCat (5537 posts) -

The story couldn't compare to the first though... I mean, it had sovereign.
"There is a realm of existence so far beyond your own you cannot even imagine it. I am beyond your comprehension. I am Sovereign."

#4 Edited by Adexus (39 posts) -

Completely agree with this, ME2 was a huge let down for me, by the time I got about 15 hours into it I just wanted it to end as it dragged on so badly, unfortunately I had to go through another 17 hours to finish it. ME1 is superior in every way in my opinion.

#5 Edited by adam_grif (1144 posts) -

ME2 was not a disappointment overall, but it had disappointing elements.
 
The human-slushee machine bit was awful, I laughed out loud when that was "revealed". The other awful things are the extreme character derailment for your crewmembers ("Oh yeah, I know that Cerberus is a mass murdering psychopathic organization I would rather die than join, but dude, LEATHER SEATS!") and the rampant idiocy of every character involved in taking the collectors down.
 
Basically, prior to the O4 relay jump, the characters were under the following impression:
 
- There is an entire civilization of people called the collectors.
- They probably have a home planet, or if not, lots of ships and space stations shielded.
- We have to wipe out the collectors in order to stop them.
 
Their plan was:
 
- Jump through.
- Figure it out when we get there.
 
DAMN. I mean seriously, that makes MacGuyver look like a chess grandmaster. THEY DIDN'T EVEN BRING ANY BIG BOMBS WITH THEM, and had to rely on the station overload in the end to wipe them out! So not only did they expect to be facing down a WHOLE CIVILIZATION, they DIDN'T EVEN BRING ANY BIG GUNS WITH THEM. Nobody brings this up at any of the little staff meetings you hold. Not even once. Nobody asks Shepard wtf they're going to do when they get there, but everybody is confident they can stop the collectors, they just think that they'll probably die when they do it. 
 
WHAT THE HELL BIOWARE?

#6 Posted by Borodin (416 posts) -

Man you people just seem crazy to me! It took me (no joke) a year to finish the first game because I found the story/gameplay so dull and boring that I just stopped playing about half way through, I only actually finished it because I wanted to have a save to import into 2. As for your comparison, I don't think it's really deep enough - reading both lists of points leaves me completely cold except for the fact you've obviously been over reductive on 2's list for effect.  
 
Personally, once I finished 1 I could say that I'd enjoyed it overall but it had some crazy bad pacing problems in my opinion, but yeah, overall a good/great game. But playing through 2 I never stopped feeling that everything I was doing, recruiting guys, upgrading the ship, whatever it was, was aimed towards the overall mission. Why am I helping Jack take a trip down memory lane? Because I want her A-game when we go through the relay, why am I scanning planets for ore? Because I want to make sure my ship is as tough as possible when we go through the relay. The story might be simpler when you reduce it to bullet points but its also suffused throughout the entire game and that makes it for me, waaaay more engaging than the story in the first game.

#7 Posted by Jayross (2365 posts) -

Thanks for the feedback guys :) 
 
@adam_grif: excellent post! I have no idea what they were thinking. Well, I guess it was supposed to be a suicide mission, right?
 
@borodin: Your impression of the game probably has something to do with your feeling of the gameplay being dull, because I didn't feel that way. And sure in ME2 you knew why you were doing everything, because the whole story was so clearly laid out in front of you. In ME1 you knew some bad stuff was up, but you didn't know the entirety of it, and so there were a lot of opportunities for twists in the story. 
 
I just hope the third game will go beyond "oh noes they be attacking teh galaxy, stop them!".

#8 Posted by Jasta (2217 posts) -

I disagree, but that is the way of the world. =)

#9 Edited by MetalGearSunny (6988 posts) -

I liked ME2, but I agree that ME3 would probably be a better game.

#10 Edited by Napalm (9020 posts) -

This was a stupid thread. I don't understand what's so difficult about understanding that Mass Effect 2 is essentially the "story bridge" between Mass Effect and Mass Effect 3, therefore there's a lot less story happening. You're more or less setting up everything that is going to play out in Mass Effect 3.
 
EDIT: I also realize you said this, but c'mon, you pointed out that what you expect to happen in 2 is why you disliked it.

#11 Posted by Sumbog (483 posts) -

Your opinions have weight, I dont agree with them, but they are valid

#12 Posted by ReyGitano (2467 posts) -

I suppose the story does look a bit dull in bulletin points, but the backstories and missions for the people you collect were interesting enough. Other than the Human Reaper I enjoyed the story in Mass Effect 2. The first Mass Effect has that advantage of being the origin story, so everything is fresh and mysterious.

#13 Posted by Hailinel (24426 posts) -
@Napalm said:
" This was a stupid thread. I don't understand what's so difficult about understanding that Mass Effect 2 is essentially the "story bridge" between Mass Effect and Mass Effect 3, therefore there's a lot less story happening. You're more or less setting up everything that is going to play out in Mass Effect 3.  EDIT: I also realize you said this, but c'mon, you pointed out that what you expect to happen in 2 is why you disliked it. "
Even if it's a story bridge, the bridge needs good support.
#14 Posted by davidwitten22 (1708 posts) -
@Napalm said:
" This was a stupid thread. I don't understand what's so difficult about understanding that Mass Effect 2 is essentially the "story bridge" between Mass Effect and Mass Effect 3, therefore there's a lot less story happening.
That's what he's saying is bad. And that is bad. It's by far the worst part of Mass Effect 2, which is otherwise a pretty awesome game.
#15 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@adam_grif said:
 THEY DIDN'T EVEN BRING ANY BIG BOMBS WITH THEM, and had to rely on the station overload in the end to wipe them out! So not only did they expect to be facing down a WHOLE CIVILIZATION, they DIDN'T EVEN BRING ANY BIG GUNS WITH THEM. Nobody brings this up at any of the little staff meetings you hold.
Isn't it pretty clear that the Normandy is not a bombing frigate or something of that nature? The whole point of the story was that it was a suicide mission. If they had a giant ship where they had planned on just going and bombing the crap out of the collector home world with time to get home for lunch then you wouldn't have had to spend all that time before hand gathering the best killers the galaxy had to offer. Fuck, they wouldn't have had to even wake up Shepard.
 
The whole premise of the story is that the Illusive Man knows that the collectors are up to something. He doesn't know what, but he knows that if nothing is done humanity will die. He also knows that since they are so in-the-dark about the exact nature of the Collector's operation, so it will be very difficult to stop them, probably a suicide mission. And this is the whole reason they resurrected Shepard. Shepard, and every other crew member, knew that it was probably going to be a suicide mission since, like you said, they were under-armed and unprepared but the cost of not doing anything was too great.
 
I actually liked the story of ME2 just as much as I did ME1. I think in the OP's list of plot points he intentionally uses language to play them down as boring and mundane. I was still enthralled with the story through the entirety of my 3 play-throughs.
#16 Posted by Soapy86 (2620 posts) -

Mass Effect 2 is superior to the first game in every conceivable way except one: The story. Which isn't to say the story in ME2 is bad, far from it, but the story in the first game was just epic. 
 
Also....Sovereign. "You exist because we allow it, and you will end because we demand it."

#17 Posted by dprabon (314 posts) -
@Jayross: Yes, this is spot on. ME1 had a much more dynamic story, but it was necessary in ME2 to have character development.  Can't wait for ME3 ( :
#18 Posted by Glak (613 posts) -

ME was more about the story, the setting, getting everything in place
ME2 developed the characters more, and it showed the seeds of your decisions in ME and built it up, but I agree it had a weaker story than ME
I hope ME3 incorporates both, the story of the original ME, the characters of ME2, and then the results of your decisions having a full impact on everything

#19 Posted by SpiralStairs (1020 posts) -

I think that with such a cool setting, Mass Effect could have been so much more. I'd enjoy playing it if the game were more about exploration and adventure, but instead it's all this political nonsense, and interacting with characters I don't even like.
 
I can understand why other people like it, but it's just not my cup of tea.

#20 Posted by Meteora (5787 posts) -

I agree, ME2 was not a better game. It was better in every department but character development and story. I loved the story in ME1; the universe was so fascinating to me at the time. There's so much lore that isn't present in ME2. And it had interesting and kickass characters like Wrex, Vigil and Sovereign. It was so damn epic.

#21 Posted by FutureNewb (12 posts) -

Good post.  Even though the story in ME2 had a little generic feeling in some aspects, overall the game was amazing.  It's my game of the year so far.  I can't comment on ME1 though because I'm lame and haven't played it yet.  I kept hearing about how bad the controls were, but I'm going to pick it up and play it since ME2 was so awesome and BIOWARE is pretty ace.

#22 Posted by pcmachnik (47 posts) -

I found the story of Mass Effect 2 pretty engaging because it was not centered around the one plot line leading towards the end. I went in expecting to finish the game with a much bigger picture off in the distance. The impressive part of the story to me was that you learned so much about so many characters and also because attached to some of them based on how you played the game. The over-arching story itself did not come to a satisfying conclusion, but you were introduced to a great deal of narrative that all kept my interest the whole time. Those elements mixed with the already established setting from the fist game provided me with an interesting story that kept me interested from beginning to end. There was the right amount of cliffhanger incorporated as well. The first game provided such an amazing ending that I am fine with a game that leaves me wanting more to the story in this case. It did not feel at all cheap and overused to me in this instance. I also agree that the elements that you speak of will make the next game the best in the series. Then again, this is why I play games. Sequels tend to get better, in my opinion, where as television shows and movies tend to get worse as they are iterated upon. Thanks for the post. You make me want to go back and play through both games again.

#23 Posted by ajamafalous (11964 posts) -

I don't think I can think of anything in ME2 that I liked more than a comparable part in ME1.
 
 
ME2 was a huge letdown for me, and I'm super glad I only paid $20 for it.

#24 Posted by Juvarial (305 posts) -

Well I think Im going to go get ME2 For PC and play through ME1 on PC right the fuck now. Because I really could go for more mass effect after reading this and remembering all the awesome shit : D
So done with the 360.

#25 Posted by adam_grif (1144 posts) -

 

Isn't it pretty clear that the Normandy is not a bombing frigate or something of that nature?

 Yes, but they also clearly have access to big nukes, as seen in Jack's loyalty mission. They didn't even bring any with them. Yawn. 
 
 

The whole point of the story was that it was a suicide mission. If they had a giant ship where they had planned on just going and bombing the crap out of the collector home world with time to get home for lunch then you wouldn't have had to spend all that time before hand gathering the best killers the galaxy had to offer. Fuck, they wouldn't have had to even wake up Shepard. 


Why would you bother gathering the greatest foot-soldiers in the galaxy if you're just going to send them against an entire alien civilization complete with a fleet of advanced warships? Because that's what we thought the Collectors were, until right at the end, after we jumped O4 and they turned out to have ONE ship and ONE space station. 
 
The mission isn't just suicidal; it had no chance of succeeding, going off the information they had. If they had any number of ships other than 1, the SR2 would have been paste. If they had more than 1 starbase, the crew couldn't have succeeded. Don't even get me started on what would have happened if they had a planet, or a system of planets like other races in the galaxy. 
 
This isn't like The Dirty Dozen, where they get a dozen elite fighters to do an infiltration mission that might actually work, it's like if they had trained them up, but the plan was to wipe out the entire Nazi military, in a direct confrontation in the middle of an open field, in broad daylight. And then it turned out that the Nazis were actually just one small village of people, and only had a few thousand soldiers, and there was a magical "make the village explode" button that they just have to reach to kill them all. But it can be reprogrammed to kill everyone instead of blow it all up, so that the Allies can have access to the V2 missiles hidden under the base to prepare for the coming cold war with Russia! 
 
You could maybe pass this off as The Illusive Man knowing more than he let on, except that none of the other characters ever bring it up as a little problem in their plan. Nobody ever asks him how they're supposed to actually achieve their objective. In fact, there isn't really an objective at all, aside from "STOP THE COLLECTORS RARRR".
#26 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@ajamafalous said:
" I don't think I can think of anything in ME2 that I liked more than a comparable part in ME1.   ME2 was a huge letdown for me, and I'm super glad I only paid $20 for it. "
Really? You enjoyed the shooting in ME1 more than ME2? I loved ME1, but I do not love broken shooter mechanics.
#27 Posted by Yummylee (21547 posts) -

While the drive of ME2 may not be seen as strong, I still found the story to be thrilling with all the loyalty missions and..comon now, the suicide mission is a little more engaging than ''  We fight through the collector ship, maybe some of your people die, or maybe they don't''

#28 Posted by achoyq (116 posts) -

Nice post. I totally agree about ME1 having a lot more significant plot than ME2. But in my opinion, I still think ME2 was a better game overall and was not a disappointment mainly because I treated it as a game. It was technically superior, had better shooting mechanics and better pacing.  
 
Oh and it's "fleshed" out, not "flushed" out.

#29 Posted by beavisofcod2 (2 posts) -

you can only spend so much time hanging your hat on one plot point for a whole trilogy 
 
imo ME2 being sort-of an "Aliens" type sequel that focuses less on the threat and more on character development was a good thing, especially since the first game was too sterile to be likable if it was the same thing in 2 more games

#30 Posted by Azteck (7449 posts) -
@Meteora said:
" I agree, ME2 was not a better game. It was better in every department but character development and story. I loved the story in ME1; the universe was so fascinating to me at the time. There's so much lore that isn't present in ME2. And it had interesting and kickass characters like Wrex, Vigil and Sovereign. It was so damn epic. "
Thank you for saying what I was thinking all along
 
I played through the first mass effect over 5 times, all the way through and I could not get enough of it. The characters, the world, the story behind it was so epic (and I use that in the original sense, not the newfangled way)   I only played through ME2 two times though, one normal and one for insanity and achievements. Maybe I was a little exhausted because of the insanity thing, but I just can't get back to it. The story just doesn't pull me in, and it feels way more tedious than the first game in so many aspects. But I could go for another run through the original Mass Effect right about now...
 
One thing that really, really frustrated me about the second Mass Effect was the shooting. In the first game, they explain why you don't need ammunition. They give a solid fucking explanation for it and then ditch it in the second game! What the hell BioWare! Personally, I hated the shooting in the second game all-together. Except for the sniper, that was a definite improvement.
#31 Posted by JerichoBlyth (1044 posts) -

Sounds like you never watched The Empire Strikes Back with that philosophy. 
 
I believe however that Mass 3 should merely be just another ark in the series...it shouldn't be concluded as a cliched trilogy. The Mass games have the potential to follow a serial format, quite like television seasons.

#32 Posted by OneManX (1687 posts) -

ME1 was all plot, so I'm guessing that is why it was so story heavy it was laying the ground work
 
But I did like the "Holy Shit" vibe of ME2, and in the end... did I full on fist pump for the amount of badassery occurred in that final fight.

#33 Edited by beavisofcod2 (2 posts) -
@adam_grif said:

"  

Isn't it pretty clear that the Normandy is not a bombing frigate or something of that nature?

 Yes, but they also clearly have access to big nukes, as seen in Jack's loyalty mission. They didn't even bring any with them. Yawn. 
 
 

The whole point of the story was that it was a suicide mission. If they had a giant ship where they had planned on just going and bombing the crap out of the collector home world with time to get home for lunch then you wouldn't have had to spend all that time before hand gathering the best killers the galaxy had to offer. Fuck, they wouldn't have had to even wake up Shepard. 


Why would you bother gathering the greatest foot-soldiers in the galaxy if you're just going to send them against an entire alien civilization complete with a fleet of advanced warships? Because that's what we thought the Collectors were, until right at the end, after we jumped O4 and they turned out to have ONE ship and ONE space station.   The mission isn't just suicidal; it had no chance of succeeding, going off the information they had. If they had any number of ships other than 1, the SR2 would have been paste. If they had more than 1 starbase, the crew couldn't have succeeded. Don't even get me started on what would have happened if they had a planet, or a system of planets like other races in the galaxy.   This isn't like The Dirty Dozen, where they get a dozen elite fighters to do an infiltration mission that might actually work, it's like if they had trained them up, but the plan was to wipe out the entire Nazi military, in a direct confrontation in the middle of an open field, in broad daylight. And then it turned out that the Nazis were actually just one small village of people, and only had a few thousand soldiers, and there was a magical "make the village explode" button that they just have to reach to kill them all. But it can be reprogrammed to kill everyone instead of blow it all up, so that the Allies can have access to the V2 missiles hidden under the base to prepare for the coming cold war with Russia!    You could maybe pass this off as The Illusive Man knowing more than he let on, except that none of the other characters ever bring it up as a little problem in their plan. Nobody ever asks him how they're supposed to actually achieve their objective. In fact, there isn't really an objective at all, aside from "STOP THE COLLECTORS RARRR". "
if you recall they found the location of the collector homeworld near the galactic core and concluded they likely had a space station, as a planet wouldn't be habitable, that and everytime they tracked the collector ship it was the same ship everytime; besides using WW2 as an example they did crazy stuff that made TDD look rational like try a Normandy-style invasion in 1943 with thousands of commandos... totally failed and the Brits knew it might fail, but that didn't stop them from trying
 
as for The Illusive Man, he's intentionally manipulative the entire game and likely wanted Shepard to capture the base intact the entire game, tho i bet he gets his hands on collector tech in the 3rd game regardless if you blow the base up or not (part of the story is that both shepard and the collectors are sort of "pawns" of bigger forces at work in the universe)
#34 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -
@davidwitten22 said:
" @Napalm said:
" This was a stupid thread. I don't understand what's so difficult about understanding that Mass Effect 2 is essentially the "story bridge" between Mass Effect and Mass Effect 3, therefore there's a lot less story happening.
That's what he's saying is bad. And that is bad. It's by far the worst part of Mass Effect 2, which is otherwise a pretty awesome game. "
Yeah, I know. Check the edit, though. You need the story bridge because Mass Effect 2 has the least amount of story content because it is the bridge. You're meeting and learning about all of these new characters, some disposable, some integral to the story. Mass Effect 3 is when all of these elements come together, and the finale in the entire story arc.
#35 Posted by MadeinFinland (839 posts) -
I know what you mean and i noticed it as well. The story was really iffy though I still loved the gameplay for the second game. 
I'm hoping that the third game brings the story back into full bloom.
#36 Posted by LoggerRythm (190 posts) -

I loved ME2 except for the scanning planets thing.  
That made the game drag and in turn almost made me not want to play it again, until Bioware put that patch on it for faster scanning. 
I wasn't disappointed in the story so much as I felt all this new stuff they introduced kinda made the third game impossible to live up to. 
It's kind of like Eragon, and by that I mean the books not that shitty movie that had nothing to do with the books, where they were supposed to be a trilogy but by the middle and end of book two you realize there's no way in hell he can tie up everything, have a huge showdown, and have it all make sense by the end of book three. 
So by before the launch of the third book, Paolini released the statement that the books were going from a trilogy to a series which made me happy because now the ending wouldn't be forced and suck all kinds of ass. 
*SPOILER WARNING YA'LL*  
So by the end of ME2 you learn there's a shit ton of Reapers ready to pounce on the galaxy.  
Which to me is kinda strange visually because each species sacrificed to make each Reaper are supposed to look like said species, except they all look exactly like Sovereign.  
So that makes me believe one of two things. That it's all BS just to be there for effect, or eons and eons ago the entire galaxy was propagated by intelligent squids that thought they were SO smart they would invent another form of perpetual life and it backfired on them, bringing us to the current situation we all know and love today. 
SERIOUSLY, even if Shepard lost no one and brought both original teams back together, he'd still be sufficiently understaffed for a little thing called "All out war with intelligent sentient ships." I'm assuming this is where Shepard has to beat some sense into the council, or whoever is in charge depending how you played thus far, to amass each military to action and probably the Rachni and Geth, again if you played it a certain way. 
Maybe it's just me but I think it's going to be hard to pull everything together and tie it all up in one more game, of course then again they probably had the entire time line of events already figured out in the beginning and found some way to actually do that in one game. So either it'll end up being a series of games or one long ass game that will probably be four to five disks long. (for the 360 version anyway) 
So with that I apologize and thank you for reading this, which was supposed to be a short rant and didn't end up that way.       Peace out peoples!!!!

#37 Posted by davidwitten22 (1708 posts) -
@Napalm said:
" @davidwitten22 said:
" @Napalm said:
" This was a stupid thread. I don't understand what's so difficult about understanding that Mass Effect 2 is essentially the "story bridge" between Mass Effect and Mass Effect 3, therefore there's a lot less story happening.
That's what he's saying is bad. And that is bad. It's by far the worst part of Mass Effect 2, which is otherwise a pretty awesome game. "
Yeah, I know. Check the edit, though. You need the story bridge because Mass Effect 2 has the least amount of story content because it is the bridge. You're meeting and learning about all of these new characters, some disposable, some integral to the story. Mass Effect 3 is when all of these elements come together, and the finale in the entire story arc. "
Ok. Doesn't excuse the weak story.
#38 Posted by jorbear (2517 posts) -

You are dead on. ME2 had a disappointing story but some great characters. ME3 will be amazing.

#39 Posted by TekZero (2672 posts) -

Whoa. Spolers... 

#40 Posted by Sabata (823 posts) -

Mass Effect 3 will only be the best if Mordin is still in it.

#41 Posted by Lazyaza (2176 posts) -

I view ME2 as a story more about characters and less about the events of the main plot.  It was a weaker story overall yes, but that's because so much of it was devoted to making you care about and take interest in the characters and not the major events taking place.
 
I think though, because of the way ME2 was done it means ME3 is going to be that much better because all the character stuff is in place and they can focus more on lots of 'oh shit' 'holy crap' and 'whoh' situations. lol

#42 Posted by threeve (199 posts) -

I can see this point of view.  Indeed Mass Effect was one of my favorite games ever, a story that I found excellent for sure, better than any game I've ever played I think and very well presented with moments like Shepherd climbing out of the wreckage at the end (is he dead?!).  It definitely had a BAM factor - Mass Effect 2 was fun.  I was a little miffed because I came from a level 59 badass adept in ME1 to a level 3 puny adept weakling that has to wait 5 seconds between powers in ME2.  Of course adept is still quite powerful by the end, but nothing like the first game.
 
It was still fun, but where ME1 kept throwing new twists at you, ME2 just sort of had a couple, and the rest of the time you were recruiting folks, even if you had already been told about getting the reaper IFF, there was no real urgency about getting around to that.   That the Collecters were once Protheans was a cool thing.  But I agree continuity wasn't there.  So there's a derelict reaper sitting in space and nobody knew about it?! And people still need proof of their existence?  And the stuff about going through the relay blind is poor tactics for sure.
 
Of course the first game wasn't perfect.  You could say there wasn't really urgency in that game either, but honestly I enjoyed it a lot more when I skipped the side missions (which I skipped most my first time through).  Same is not true of the second because the combat is the fun part now I guess. Anyway, hoping for a great thing in the finale for sure.

#43 Posted by ajamafalous (11964 posts) -
@mazik765 said:
" @ajamafalous said:
" I don't think I can think of anything in ME2 that I liked more than a comparable part in ME1.   ME2 was a huge letdown for me, and I'm super glad I only paid $20 for it. "
Really? You enjoyed the shooting in ME1 more than ME2? I loved ME1, but I do not love broken shooter mechanics. "
I played a Vanguard, so I used pistols and shotguns.
 
I had no qualms with the aiming at all.
#44 Posted by zityz (2360 posts) -

ME 2 was more about the characters and the collectors. Did we play the same game? 
 
I didn't find the story too bad, it basically introduced new characters and backstories to them, that is if you even did them, if not they would seam like meh who cares. Reuniting with old characters and learning more about them and what they became. 
 
The story was focus around the collectors as well, they were working for the reapers. They used to be protheans. That "robot" was a human reaper they were trying to make, which could lead to the theroy that the reapers were a race at one point and history is repeating itself. 
 
Also, the story is more split up into several topics, where as the first one was more 1 main topic; find out what the shit is going on. 
 
ME2 story isnt perfect but it's not as dull as your posts makes it sound, they way your describing it, it sounds as if nothing happends at all. Besides everything is going to be explained in ME3, this is including ME1 because while yes they did destroy Soverign they don't explain much as what the hell they feel like doing this NOW, and why they feel the need to destroy everything. 
 
Also, upgrading your ship is a gameplay mechanic not a story, only part that involves story is that you get a better ship. 
 
 
Sorry if this sounds like I'm ranting or bitching at the OP, I'm not. :D
#45 Posted by carlthenimrod (1594 posts) -

I liked the story in ME 1 better, but the story in ME 2 was still great. The side stories in particular were amazingly well done.
 
Also, ME 2 was a far better game in just about every other aspect besides story.

#46 Posted by Jayross (2365 posts) -

Thanks for all the responses everyone. I'm glad to see there are people who agree, and people who disagree. I do a lot of these type of blogs, so check 'em out.

#47 Edited by Death_Unicorn (2838 posts) -

How can you flush out a character? Does it involve toilets or something?
 
Anyways, Mass Effect had a great central plot, while Mass Effect 2 had great character plots, and the entire thing was driven by those characters very much like the famous science fiction novel Hyperion, or so I've heard, since I haven't read it, yet. If you just look at the main story, yeah it is extremely week, you also have to take into context the characters that helped drive that story in which Mass Effect 2 excels. Most of the first game's characters felt slightly 2 dimensional.
 
You don't really express any new ideas, a lot of people have felt this way for a while now. I agree, Mass Effect 3 will be amazing, IF they don't make you get an entirely new squad.

#48 Posted by Undeadpool (4924 posts) -

I disagree with the contention that the game was "dumbed down." The game was streamlined, and no I'm not just using that as a euphemism. Commander Shepard is an elite operative, trained to use whatever weapons his/her class can use with the utmost effectiveness. There's no good reason why you should have to build up his/her weapon skills as though they were some kind of rank amateur. If we were joining Shepard when they were still a rookie, it would make sense, but we're not. Shepard is at the peak of his/her career and I think ME2 reflects that much more accurately. 
Other than that it's an interesting read. I'll definitely agree with you that the plot of 2 isn't as gripping, but it's hardly bad. I think they just wanted to get you into the action more quickly since so much of the first one was fleshing (not to be a jerk, but I do think you meant "fleshing out" not "flushing out") the universe. I felt like the characters in the ME2 were VASTLY superior (even returning characters) in terms of being real people.  ME1 and 2 are a couple of my favorite games, though, and it's nice to see that people are still excited about them, even if I disagree with some points.

#49 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -
@ajamafalous said:
" @mazik765 said:
" @ajamafalous said:
" I don't think I can think of anything in ME2 that I liked more than a comparable part in ME1.   ME2 was a huge letdown for me, and I'm super glad I only paid $20 for it. "
Really? You enjoyed the shooting in ME1 more than ME2? I loved ME1, but I do not love broken shooter mechanics. "
I played a Vanguard, so I used pistols and shotguns.  I had no qualms with the aiming at all. "
I don't understand the sentiment of "broken shooting mechanics" in Mass Effect 1. The only way I can see someone actively feeling that way is if they never upgraded their weapons, never bothered to switch out to more powerful/accurate weapons, and never installed performance mods on their guns. The mechanics aren't broken - you just suck at distributing points and using what the game gives you. I would even go so far as to argue that the "shooting mechanics" in Mass Effect 2 are less accurate and more bothersome. They are not actively bad, but there's a huge accuracy issue with most of the weapons, as well as I frequently run out of ammunition for a few choice guns, which is annoying.
#50 Posted by Nomin (972 posts) -

The trajectory arc of the Mass Effect plot = the trajectory arc of the Matrix series 
 
Mass Effect will then reboot into an MMO series. Where is the money, Lebowski?

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