exists's Mass Effect (Limited Collector's Edition) (Xbox 360) review

A great RPG but with an average combat mechanism

Note: Read prequel book (Mass Effect: Revelations) by Drew Karpyshyn and enjoyed it, a good read. You might want to get it to have a good understanding of the ME Universe, species and key characters. That, in turn, got me to buying Drew's other books, Star Wars: Darth Bane which is one great book and I just got the newly published Darth Bane: Rule of Two, he's got me hooked. Where are you KOTOR 3 and please no MMO!!! Back to Mass Effect...

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What was GIANT
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- Liara > Need I say more?! She's hot!

- Scope > It's pretty big, not as much as Oblivion but still quite impressive. The Universe/Story takes you in and it's hard to let go.

- Planet hopping > Even though there's a good degree of repetition, it doesn't get old to jump in the Mako and explore these planets, very entertaining. Giving me some ideas for a future game hmmmm....

- Mako > Driving the Mako is a lot of fun, don't know why people complained about the Mako controls. I think they're way better than the combat ones, the Mako rocks!!!

- Dialogue/Speech > very easy to use/navigate, doesn't get much better than that!

- RPG Elements > Typical Bioware with lots of options and selections to choose from.

- Story > Not bad for a new IP, following Star Wars is not an easy feat but it gets close, not there yet. It seems to be missing that cool weapon like a lightsaber that makes you stand out.

- Music > Well done! Love the opening music, it does get a little bit dry when you play the game, needed more variety.

- Graphics > Pretty good but not as good as Gears / COD4 / Assassin's Creed. There are instances when textures take a while to load but not a big deal.

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What BOMBed
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- Combat > By far the weakest feature, KOTOR's turn-based combat was way better. It's realtime but it doesn't feel like an FPS, ideally it needs to be like the GRAW single-player controls. Controlling your team can be a pain, the team AI is average if not poor. Needs significant work.

- Difficulty settings > Due to the average combat mechanism, moving the difficulty setting up can be frustrating at times. I played all CODs on Veteran but I have no interest in increasing the setting in ME.

- Achievements > Poorly done, make you play an RPG 4-5 times is absolutely ridiculous!

- Buggy > Sometimes your character gets stuck and you have to reload etc.

- Auto-save > not frequent enough and having a quicksave button is also missing, can be a pain to go back and save your earliest save.

- Framerate > Pretty bad in some spots, similar to Oblivion which is 2+ yrs old.

- Controls > Not the most obvious layout, could be better. The use of the X button to zoom out in planet browsing vs B button etc.

- Guide/Tutorial > Lacks depth, needs much more info.

- Menus > Again, not enough info and not as detailed as KOTOR.

- Universe map > It would be nice to mark the places you've been to, come on!

- Elevator ride > very sloooowwww

- Spectre > Becoming a Spectre so quickly was very anti-climatic and unexpected, should have happened further down the storyline
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