Let's talk about the story and the ending (...spoilers included)

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#1 Posted by Quipido (1452 posts) -

I finished the game today, clocked at 71 hours with 89% complete stat on my save file. I did everything I found, exluding the tasks category. Also I visitied about two thirds of all the planets, but they only give a tiny ammount of a rescource or exp, they never lead to any side quest as far as I know.

I enjoyed the game a lot, I had no real problems with the writing throughout, I liked most of the quests even though not many were as exciting as the ones from previous games. The whole experience felt a bit flat.

The ending left me wanting though - none of the big questions got answered: where did the Kett come from? What about the precursor race? And the Scourge? You only get bit and pieces but it never comes together to a coherent bigger picture story. And the similarities to pervios games themes is a let down - you basically have new Collectors, new Prothean technology and a new Crucible - a magic button that will save everything even thoug you have no clue how.

Also finding a new artificial planet seemed like a huge cop-out and also Halo derivative idea (the planet is basically a Halo, but spherical).

I would love to hear other opinions, if you finished the game.

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#2 Edited by Quarters (2648 posts) -

Got tired of the filler crap and side stuff (even in the vault territory of things) in between actual missions and character development, but quite enjoyed the story and characters. Probably liked it more than ME1 overall, which I also love, so it's a good starting place for the future. Curious to see how future DLCs develop it.

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#3 Edited by Marz (6092 posts) -

I thought it was an ok game too, but the ending was definitely tailor made for future content like dlc and expansions and more games... the potential is there. But I feel like the characters themselves weren't very strong to carry a new trilogy, (drack was cool, but all the krogans are cool). I myself am interested in knowing more about the remnant and the Jaardan(creator race) but have to wait for any new content that comes out.

I think there's a sprinkle of information on the Kett Empire from a side quest involving a salarian scientist(or doctor, can't remember) who has information to give you if you don't arrest him, you can read that codex entry and it gives you alot of detail about the Kett empire hierarchy and name of their homeworld, but they do rule the Andromeda galaxy atm from what it looks like.

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#4 Edited by Sterling (4134 posts) -

I hated the ending. I just finished it. And I hated the last 2 hours of this game. It was all so poorly put together. Surprise the bad dude just somehow walked into your highly guarded bases and took your AI. And no one warned you before it happened. Then you find the place you've been looking for, and of course its a paradise untouched by the scourge, even though its surrounded by it. Also the post game stuff was pretty awful. I don't think anyone at Bioware knows how to wrap a game up.

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#5 Posted by zaccheus (2074 posts) -

I enjoyed the game well enough, but the end really left a bad taste in my mouth. I feel like there is a lot missing in the main story. Also it's kind of bland. Inquisition is a similar game in many ways, but it's main missions were huge and varied, which really helped when you started to get tired of the MMO-like quest design. There was a massive lack of epicness in ME:A, nothing much happened. The last mission had some of that in it, but it was too little too late.

There is just something missing from this game, it's not the Inquisition in the ME universe I wanted.

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#6 Edited by NTM (11013 posts) -

I finished it last night, did most of it except for maybe eight task missions. It took right on 100 hours. I liked it a lot, but it definitely has issues, and I can't really disagree with people about the issues it has except for how many glitches I got. I got some, but nothing really made the experience terrible. The ending was fine, but I was hoping it lead to something more connected to the original trilogy. I was thinking that it would have been cool if they revealed that one of the three endings of three turned out to be true. I don't know how it'd work, but perhaps Shepard turning into the reaper could have been the case, and all the remnant tech is of him. He somehow got to the Andromeda galaxy hundreds of years prior. The story definitely left too many of the questions left standing where a sequel will come into place, but to me, it wasn't as bad as Mankind Divided's way of going about it. Also, I was totally wrong in suspecting that Alec Ryder somehow inserted the mom's personality into SAM. I kind of suspected that would be the case with the first memory being unlocked and shown, but it became absolutely nothing. A lot of things that made me think 'this is predictable' (and it wouldn't always be worse for it) turned out to be pretty basic and not really revealing of anything special.

The game felt very Bioware-y. I mean, the way the characters interact with you, and the ending where everyone comes together even though those that come together don't get along with one another to fight the antagonist. It's something I love, and I liked it here, but it is old hat and again, predictable. I am interested in what a sequel brings, and I'll be happy to see more of the familiar aliens like Quarians and what have you. I cared enough about the characters where I actually thought about taking them on specific missions based on their personality like I would actually feel bad if I didn't bring Peebee along when I'm looking for remnant tech and what have you. And I wanted Jaal along for most missions because he is most familiar with the galaxy and he could be a tour guide of sorts. That said, I pretty much brought Drack and Jaal along for every mission. I put Vetra and Peebee in there from time to time. Never took Liam as a squadmate other than the missions he had to be on, and I think I took Cora as a squadmate once. Drack was the coolest character to me, I just like Krogans, and I like Peebee the second most even though she is the pinnacle of the predictable archetype Bioware squad member to me.

I romanced Cora, but she's not even close to my favorite character. She's okay. I don't dislike her. I don't really agree with people that say the writing or voice work was bad, but there are times when it is awkward. There's a bit too much to jot down in terms of issues in that respect, but one moment in terms of voice work that was weird was on Drack's loyalty mission, he sounded like he was using a Brooklyn or Boston accent, and it was just super weird. Also (not pertaining to voice work anymore), there's the part where they're watching movies, and Kallo mentions how you can't hear sound in space, and yet the next thing I was doing was the end where they were in space and you can hear all the explosions and ship sounds in battle. To me, it was a weird thing to even add, because it's almost making fun of its own logic. I have to assume we'll see a sequel, and what I hope is that they really focus on making what you do matter, and not give so many freaking fetch-quests that don't say anything interesting. I'd rather they make more compact, detailed worlds, and if need be, lessen the number of quests, but make them more important where characters and places are explored more deeply.

Also, I understood the way the menus worked, but going through all the menus, as well as always having to go back and forth, like the development terminal to the weapons locker really wasn't needed. I'd love if that stuff were streamlined.

Edit - If anyone wants a discussion about the game that isn't actually negative, just as an opposite view of the game, listen to this podcast. Starting at fourteen minutes in. I feel in between the views of what's said in this podcast and what more negative views of the game are.

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#7 Edited by NTM (11013 posts) -

@quipido: It's not really like Halo, well okay it is, but that's a Dyson sphere, it's been in many sci-fi's before, that's why I say it's not like Halo. I was thinking earlier in the game if Mass Effect had Dyson sphere's, and yep, it does. Your questions about the happenings and aliens of Andromeda are definitely questions to be answered, but I'm more curious as to who the benefactor is. To me, it's just something that will be answered in the sequel, or sequels. In that respect, I wasn't as disappointed because I know I'll probably play it when it comes out. I felt it ended as the previous Mass Effect games ended, where it gives the same amount of questions.

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#8 Edited by BoOzak (2284 posts) -

I didnt like the ending at all but I did enjoy some of the character moments throughout, even if the characters themselves wernt that interesting.

I really wish the game encouraged exploration more, or had more personality, even just giving your Nomad a speaker system would go a long way.

As I was playing Andromeda I kept getting reminded of Xenoblade Chronicles X and how that game did so many things better with a similar premise.

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#9 Posted by wicket42 (22 posts) -

@ntm: A Dyson Sphere has a star at the centre, Meridian wasn't nearly large enough to be a Dyson Sphere.

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#10 Edited by NTM (11013 posts) -

@wicket42: Hm, true. I guess it's a little different. The codex itself says it's akin to one.

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#11 Edited by Tennmuerti (9365 posts) -

The ending itself was fine. Not the best not the worst. Good enough.

The preamble to the ending was a cringe worthy tho. I am referring to the bug in your neck and the archon using you to get to meridian. It was stupid and incredibly predictable. Reminded me of the awful point in Dishonored's 1 story when you have to enter the pub full of people you know are traitors and drink the drink that is obviously poison. Ugh. The game (story) having to make the protagonist into a complete idiot suddenly for a bit in order to further the plot along is just the weakest possible narrative crutch.

The ride down meridian was a nice callback to ME1 endgame sequence by the way which I did enjoy.

Not as bad as the ME2 or ME3 endings imo.

As for notable parts from the story. Christ why oh why were there never any guns on any of the ships, just such a stupid and contrived plot device. Lets go into the complete unknown and not have any large scale defensive measures. They didn't even bother trying to install some after finding the situation hostile, Jesus, so so bad. Drak was cool. I am a sucker for old badasses.

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#12 Posted by NTM (11013 posts) -

@tennmuerti: There's actually a moment when you're in the cargo bay and the alien crew asks Cora why there are no weapons on the ship at all.

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#13 Posted by Tennmuerti (9365 posts) -

@ntm said:

@tennmuerti: There's actually a moment when you're in the cargo bay and the alien crew asks Cora why there are no weapons on the ship at all.

I didn't get to overhear that one, what was her weak ass excuse?

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#14 Posted by TheBluthCompany (478 posts) -

@tennmuerti: apparently the ship would tear itself in half with a weapons recoil. Seems like a bad choice for a ship in an entirely new galaxy if you ask me.

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#15 Edited by NTM (11013 posts) -

@tennmuerti: Found it. This is it. It wasn't so much just asking Cora I guess. Yeah, bad excuse. Probably should have made a better ship. That said, I think they were thinking it's about exploration and finding a new home, not about fighting an alien race, which yeah, can be considered pretty dumb.

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#16 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@tennmuerti: apparently the ship would tear itself in half with a weapons recoil. Seems like a bad choice for a ship in an entirely new galaxy if you ask me.

Well, I can accept the Tempest not having guns. It's not like it's a frigate, cruiser, or dreadnought. It's a small scout ship designed for exploration and agility, not combat.

It does beg the question though, did the Initiative actually bring any warships? The only ships we ever see are Kodiak shuttles, the Arks, and the Tempest. It's briefly mentioned that there were other Tempest class ships brought along but only the one made it through the Nexus's initial contact with the scourge in working order. Even if it wouldn't make sense for them to have somehow brought along dreadnoughts like the Destiny Ascension (which is around the size of the arks), the Nexus could easily house plenty of Normandy sized, combat capable frigates.

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#17 Edited by Tennmuerti (9365 posts) -

@ntm: @ll_exile_ll: Or even at least have some guns on the arks themselves, which is what I was thinking more along the lines of (in addition defense fighters like you said). They don't need to be the biggest things, but cmon, nothing? The elusive man sent out a back up plan of a human colony ship (along with other species) to another galaxy with 0 defenses .... please.

Even if we somehow accept that plot contrivance. They still emerged into what was soon found out to be hostile space with clearly armed enemy warships, at least some space combat worthy guns would appear to be in order to defend yourselves. Setting up colonies is all well and good, but protection should be developed right along side them. You have mass drives at the very least, jury rig some of those. They build out almost the entire Nexus to completion during the course of the game!

Shit they clearly gave some thought to conflict, they brought infantry weapons along, and not the civilian police kind either. :/

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#18 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@ntm: @ll_exile_ll: Or even at least have some guns on the arks themselves, which is what I was thinking more along the lines of (in addition defense fighters like you said). They don't need to be the biggest things, but cmon, nothing? The elusive man sent out a back up plan of a human colony ship (along with other species) to another galaxy with 0 defenses .... please.

Even if we somehow accept that plot contrivance. They still emerged into what was soon found out to be hostile space with clearly armed enemy warships, at least some space combat worthy guns would appear to be in order to defend yourselves. Setting up colonies is all well and good, but protection should be developed right along side them. You have mass drives at the very least, jury rig some of those.

Shit they clearly gave some thought to conflict, they brought infantry weapons along, and not the civilian police kind either. :/

The Illusive Man had nothing to do with the Andromeda Initiative.

If you're referring to the mysterious benefactor that stepped in and fast tracked the Initiative, I guarantee to you it's not the Illusive Man. I know that's a popular theory (especially on the ME reddit), but let me tell you why he's not the benefactor.

Firstly, it would be lame as hell and it contradicts the whole purpose of the series going in this direction. They specifically moved the series to a new galaxy for a fresh start. Bringing back the whole Cerberus/Illusive Man plot as a major element of the story going forward would be counterproductive to that idea. It's the same reason the Reapers will never be anything more than a reason for the Initiative finally getting off the ground after a decade toiling away, these stories have already been concluded.

Secondly, there's no interesting story to be told there. Think about it. Say it's revealed that the Illusive Man is the benefactor, that immediately leads into questions from all the characters in this game asking: "Who is the Illusive Man?" "What affect does this have on anything we're doing here?" "Why does this person's identity matter? He died 600 years ago in another galaxy."

The only way interesting stories, interactions, and conflict can come from the identity of the benefactor is if that person is part of the Initiative and present in a future game or DLC. A reveal that means nothing to the characters in the story, has no bearing on future events, doesn't create any meaningful conflict, and essentially only exists as a nod to players of the previous games would be a bad reveal.

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#19 Posted by takayamasama (1524 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: The issue there is, there isn't an interesting story to be told if it ISN'T the Illusive Man, either. The way the Benefactor is described, knowing about the reapers and Shepard's plight before anyone else, describes the Illusive man to a T, and so does his interest in AI (SAM) and making sure humanity always survives and is the top of the food chain. As lame as him being the Benefactor is, it is even lamer if he isn't, because that means the universe of Mass Effect has (yet again) contrived a super powerful, wealthy, all knowing individual that you never ever encounter or even catch wind of in the 4 games we now have. If it turns out to be some random new person who just apparently had all the knowledge while in the milky way, and the resources and foresight to set up the Initiative and also put agents in it to take out threats to their identity, then that is just as stupid and out of nowhere as Starchild was, in my opinion.

Whatever the answer is, it isn't and won't be a good one. This games story in all aspects is a let down :(

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#20 Edited by Tennmuerti (9365 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: Then who is it in your opinion? I am genuinely curious.

Because the game all but rubs your nose in the Illusive man. Someone with immense funding, a network of people, aware of the Reaper threat, with very good knowledge of Shepard's actions, to the point that I would say that the game all but says he personally knows Shepard. Ryder having contact with Liara. Ryder doing research on AI, which the benefactor is very much aware of and can make use of and is very much blase about hiding. The Cerberus researchers on that exile planet talking about Lazarus. There are just too many links. They would have to be deliberately misleading otherwise.

Also for as much as you say the games are a fresh start they sure as hell pay a lot of lip service to the previous games on more then one ocasion, including (but by far not limited to) all of the above.

ME story having lame ass plot points or bad reveals is nothing new, so I don't really think that just because the IM would be nothing but a nod to the fans of the previous series is enough good grounds to say it's not him, when put up against all of the above. Something being not quite logical to has has never stopped ME writers before past the first game.

Nothing explicitly states that he needs to be plot relevant in future games. He might be just there as a tie in for fans of the previous games and that's that /shrug

I am not excluding a possibility that it's not him (especially if we go down the road of reasoning out that they are seeding misdirection on purpose), but c'mon, it might be just as lame for them to pull a "gotacha!" - "it's not the IM, it's this other super rich, mysterious, reaper threat taking seriously, Shepard dealing, AI condoning entity." depending on how they handle either option ofc.

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#21 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: The issue there is, there isn't an interesting story to be told if it ISN'T the Illusive Man, either. The way the Benefactor is described, knowing about the reapers and Shepard's plight before anyone else, describes the Illusive man to a T, and so does his interest in AI (SAM) and making sure humanity always survives and is the top of the food chain. As lame as him being the Benefactor is, it is even lamer if he isn't, because that means the universe of Mass Effect has (yet again) contrived a super powerful, wealthy, all knowing individual that you never ever encounter or even catch wind of in the 4 games we now have. If it turns out to be some random new person who just apparently had all the knowledge while in the milky way, and the resources and foresight to set up the Initiative and also put agents in it to take out threats to their identity, then that is just as stupid and out of nowhere as Starchild was, in my opinion.

Whatever the answer is, it isn't and won't be a good one. This games story in all aspects is a let down :(

There are trillions of people in the Milky Way across all the races. Do you really think the Illusive Man is the only shady, wealthy individual in the entire galaxy? It's far more contrived that the benefactor would be someone we already know than it is that a person with the knowledge and means to do these things exists that we haven't seen or heard of before.

Also, the benefactor didn't start the Initiative, that was Jien Garson. She started it for purely scientific and exploratory motives. It only after the wealthy individual (or individuals, there's no reason the benefactor has to be one person) stepped in almost a decade later that the project actually had a chance of going forward. Like going to the moon in the 1960s, the endeavor only had a chance of actually happening when it benefited powerful people with an agenda other than pure scientific advancement.

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#22 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: Then who is it in your opinion? I am genuinely curious.

Because the game all but rubs your nose in the Illusive man. Someone with immense funding, a network of people, aware of the Reaper threat, with very good knowledge of Shepard's actions, to the point that I would say that the game all but says he personally knows Shepard. Ryder having contact with Liara and Tali. Ryder doing research on AI, which the benefactor is very much aware of and can make use of and is very much blase about hiding. The Cerberus researchers on that exile planet talking about Lazarus. There are just too many links. They would have to be deliberately misleading otherwise.

Also for as much as you say the games are a fresh start they sure as hell pay a lot of lip service to the previous games on more then one ocasion, including (but by far not limited to) all of the above.

ME story having lame ass plot points or bad reveals is nothing new, so I don't really think that just because the IM would be nothing but a nod to the fans of the previous series is enough good grounds to say it's not him, when put up against all of the above. Something being not quite logical to has has never stopped ME writers before past the first game.

Nothing explicitly states that he needs to be plot relevant in future games. He might be just there as a tie in for fans of the previous games and that's that /shrug

I am not excluding a possibility that it's not him, but cmon, it might be just as lame for them to pull a "gotacha!" - "it's not the IM, it's this other super rich, mysterious, reaper threat taking seriously, shepard dealing, AI condoning entity."

It has to be more than a tie in to previous games. There's the whole Jien Garson murder subplot that is never resolved. It's made clear she is murdered for having knowledge of the benefactor. If it's the Illusive Man, why kill her over that? He's long dead and completely irrelevant to anything happening in Andromeda. It makes much more sense that the benefactor is in Andromeda and wanted to keep her quiet and prevent her from interfering with their agenda.

As for who I think the benefactor is, it could be someone we've met already or someone completely unknown. I think taking a look at Nexus leaders, all of whom conveniently found themselves in positions of power after the original Nexus leadership was decimated, makes a lot of sense. If it turned out to be Tann or Addison I wouldn't be surprised. Tann specifically directly benefited from Jien Garson's death, he has her job.

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#23 Edited by Tennmuerti (9365 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: It could be his son/daughter in Andromeda, or it could be a cell on hyperion that has a hidden function that is supposed to activate later and has a hidden agenda (like elevate humanity), or a mix of both, who knows. Possibilities are many. Garson was murdered yes, but as you say it's not resolved, we don't actually know if she was killed because of knowing of the benefactor or it was some other reason. All we know was that she was paranoid of him. Like you say it could be Tann that murdered her. Doesn't necessarily make him to be the benefactor, just a convenient murderer.

Right now all you are presenting is a wild guess, versus all the other evidence pointing at IM, it not being IM would require said evidence to be deliberately misleading. It's more flimsy atm then an indoctrination theory. Aside from the IM angle, it's all pie in the sky guesswork, based on "it would be bad plot wise" in a game full of bad plot moments in a series with a history of bad plot moments.

I don't want to sound dismissive trust me I like hearing out other ideas, but there's just nothing more solid available right now then the IM angle, as irrelevant to the future of Andromeda as that might be, it's still at the very least: a tangible touchstone to the past vs. nothing else.

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#24 Edited by NTM (11013 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: @tennmuerti: That's a good point about Tempest not necessarily needing guns. That said, you'd think the initiative would lend a ship to Ryder that had weapons on it if they had one, considering he's the main person it seems that is fighting the Kett. As for who the benefactor is, the only reason I would think it wasn't the Illusive Man is because they kind of make it seem like the benefactor is still out there hiding, though it's entirely possible that it is the Illusive Man, and it's just that the characters aren't aware.

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#25 Edited by GundamGuru (778 posts) -

@quipido: I agree generally with all your points. I also disliked how little gravitas supposedly huge revelations had throughout the game, like the discovery that the Angara are a genetically engineered race that sprang from nothing a few millennia ago. You get, like, one bit of dialogue from a few Angaran characters; a bunch of insipid musing about the nature of God, mostly. No major quests or anything from that, and it's not relevant to the main conflict at hand, nor does it really factor into the ending. Just kinda tossed out and ignored, just like the whole 'mysterious benefactor' plotline.

They never give any details or insight into anything really. In the original trilogy all the little written text scattered on consoles, datapads, the (previously narrated) codex, and planet descriptions would give little tidbits on the world and races that enhanced the sense of a big, inhabited world. In Andromeda, most of those are used either for a cheesy joke or an unsubtle reference to something from the old games. The planet descriptions are universally just "the Scourge fucked this one up." All the socially awkward mess on the terminals in New Tuchanka really disappointed me. The Krogan and their history was one of the more interesting plot threads in old ME, but the ones on new Tuchanka apparently act like a bunch of middle schoolers. It's a bunch of little things that make you feel like the writers don't take the lore of the universe seriously.

The video gamey-ness of some of the main mechanics bothered me. Particularly the "Andromeda Viability Points" and the way your memories unlock in the Ryder quest. The AVP system is so contrived they felt the need to have Addison hang a lantern on it with her whole "it's an unfortunate abstraction, but viability is about lives Ryder. We're starving here" line. As far as Ryder's memories, going into Andromeda hot off Zelda: BotW and how they handled the amnesiac character just made this one stand out as an unfinished idea. Memory prompts? Just what am I finding, how did they get where they are, and why would my own father hide this stuff from me? Was he anticipating his own death? When did he set up all this memory encryption breadcrumb stuff? As he was dying?

Anyway, just some random thoughts from someone who finished the game last night at 55 hours and 93% on PC.

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#26 Posted by sandalinbohemia (42 posts) -

Does anyone know what happens if you go into the last mission without all of the loyalty quests resolved? I felt like, as opposed to the previous games, there was no real threat of any of your squad mates dying, which, in hindsight, had me both relieved and annoyed in equal measures. (This is coming from someone who enjoyed this squad a lot; I actually went back after I had finished all story missions just to hear more Nomad-banter).

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#27 Posted by takayamasama (1524 posts) -

@sandalinbohemia: 99.9% the exact same outcome. I ran through an Insanity run in 6 hours to get my Plat Trophy, and the only difference was Dunn dies since you didn't have Asari there to shield her during the crash. Everything else was 100% the same, even though I not only did no Loyalty missions, I also only set up an outpost on Eos, didn't activate the Vaults on any other planet, didn't even go to 2 planets, didn't have planet viability anywhere past Eos at like 40%, etc....

It was just another notch on this incredibly disappointing game.

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#28 Posted by sandalinbohemia (42 posts) -

@takayamasama: ...............I did all loyalty missions, all side missions, and Dunn died in my playthrough??

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#29 Posted by takayamasama (1524 posts) -

@sandalinbohemia: hmmmmmm then I have no idea what keeps her alive? In my first play through she lived because as she went flying in the cockpit, you saw an Asari shield appear. I figured that was 100% due to Cora's loyalty mission and saving the Asari arc...since those are the only Asari you actually interact with, outside the like 2 on the Citadel and Lexi/Peebee

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#30 Edited by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@takayamasama said:

@sandalinbohemia: hmmmmmm then I have no idea what keeps her alive? In my first play through she lived because as she went flying in the cockpit, you saw an Asari shield appear. I figured that was 100% due to Cora's loyalty mission and saving the Asari arc...since those are the only Asari you actually interact with, outside the like 2 on the Citadel and Lexi/Peebee

It's related to whether or not you keep Sarissa's secret. Her big thing is that she's super amazing at creating biotic barriers, and if you expose her and force her to step down as pathfinder (or if you never find the Asari ark), she won't be in the final battle at the end to shield Dunn.

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#31 Posted by takayamasama (1524 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: Must be that then. I told Cora to shut it because it didn't seem like it mattered and honestly I was tired of the game by that point and keeping her around seemed like the quicker option then going through a whole "SHE MUST BE REVEALED" thing. Also it felt good just to piss off Cora

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#32 Posted by sandalinbohemia (42 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: welp, that's what I got for exposing Sarissa and rooting for the underdog.

(That said, all this could have been prevented if seatbelts existed in this universe...)

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#33 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: welp, that's what I got for exposing Sarissa and rooting for the underdog.

(That said, all this could have been prevented if seatbelts existed in this universe...)

I like the way it was handled. As far as I'm concerned, the more games feature unforeseen consequences as a result of your decisions, the better. I really like the idea that you make the choice you feel is best in the moment, but it can lead to consequences down the line that you couldn't have anticipated.

I think knowing exactly what's going to result from every decision you make is a boring way to handle player choice. The Witcher 3 executed the idea of unforeseen consequences better than any other game as far as I'm concerned, and I like seeing more games try to explore this concept.

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#34 Posted by two_socks (496 posts) -

@sandalinbohemia: I exposed Sarissa and had the other Asari become Pathfinder and she made the shield at the end and Dunn lived in my game.

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#35 Posted by takayamasama (1524 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: I don't know, I think the previous 3 and a ton of other games do this way better then Andromeda. It was a real bummer to see the only difference between my full, 90%+ completion file and my 6 hour, didn't do a thing file was just one relatively minor character's death.

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#36 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@sandalinbohemia: I exposed Sarissa and had the other Asari become Pathfinder and she made the shield at the end and Dunn lived in my game.

I just looked up the exact scenario, apparently all three pathfinders have an impact on the outocme. You need to have 3 pathfinders, so if Avitus doesn't take the job Dunn will die. If Sarissa is disgraced but allowed to remain pathfinder, Dunn will die.

So, you need to have 3 pathfinders and if Sarissa's secret was revealed, she can't remain pathfinder.

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#37 Edited by sandalinbohemia (42 posts) -

@two_socks: my god, now I am very confused. I do recall the other asari casting a shield in the cutscene of the final battle but Dunn was very much dead (like on the galaxy map I found her remains they had launched into space to honor her and everything).

@ll_exile_ll: Ahhhh, that would be it, then. I let Avitus choose whether he wanted to be pathfinder and he didn't. Thanks for clearing that up!

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#38 Posted by two_socks (496 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: That would make sense. I had the Asari, Turian and Salarian Pathfinders all there at the end.

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#39 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll: I don't know, I think the previous 3 and a ton of other games do this way better then Andromeda. It was a real bummer to see the only difference between my full, 90%+ completion file and my 6 hour, didn't do a thing file was just one relatively minor character's death.

I didn't say the every decision in the game makes good on the idea of unforeseen consequences, just that I liked this specific example. There's some degree of it in the original trilogy, but the major decisions are pretty straightforward.

Kaiden or Ashley. Pretty obvious what the result of that choice will be.

Let the Rachni Queen live or die. Straightforward, and this choice had far fewer consequences in ME3 than it would have in an ideal world where budget and development time weren't an issue.

Save or destroy the collector base? Affects a war asset number in ME3 and does nothing else.

For every great moment like the resolution of the Geth / Quarian conflict, which takes like 5 or 6 choices from previous games into account to determine if peace is possible, there are many more decisions where the result is obvious and seen immediately, or seems like it will come back and ends up have little to no affect on anything down the line.

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#40 Posted by MrWakka (314 posts) -

@tennmuerti: apparently the ship would tear itself in half with a weapons recoil. Seems like a bad choice for a ship in an entirely new galaxy if you ask me.

.. I mean even Gene Roddenberry's utopian future humanity and federation had the sense to arm their exploration vessels.

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#41 Posted by huser (1421 posts) -

@tennmuerti: Heck, being dead for 600 years in another galaxy isn't exactly a prohibition from being an ongoing threat in a sci-fi universe. Your agents, your agenda, or even yourself can survive something so paltry as that.

Let's go through the obvious abilities of Cerberus. Can bring the dead back to life (ME2). Can make pretty much identical clones of currently living people (Citadel DLC). Have dabbled in supremely powerful AI (EDI), and robots that can believably infiltrate high security installations (EDI's body). The Initiative can keep people in cold storage for 600 years and has at least one fully functional AI that bonds to living minds. Any number of ways for a highly placed agent or some iteration of the Illusive man himself to show up.

Hell, just hearing about the plot from the beginning I thought the Initiative was a Cerberus endeavor. Right down to getting the Citadel races to get involved logistically, but "mysteriously" having their ships with the bulk of their numbers all get dispersed.

I still hold out hope though that species from previous Reaper cycles colonized Andromeda. Maybe even them and the native Andromedans going extinct because they keep making robot slaves...

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#42 Posted by takayamasama (1524 posts) -

@huser: Hell, the ways the Kett talk and how they absorb all DNA, they already seem like an Organic version of the Reapers/Collectors.

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#43 Posted by Quipido (1452 posts) -

@quipido: I agree generally with all your points. I also disliked how little gravitas supposedly huge revelations had throughout the game, like the discovery that the Angara are a genetically engineered race that sprang from nothing a few millennia ago. You get, like, one bit of dialogue from a few Angaran characters; a bunch of insipid musing about the nature of God, mostly. No major quests or anything from that, and it's not relevant to the main conflict at hand, nor does it really factor into the ending. Just kinda tossed out and ignored, just like the whole 'mysterious benefactor' plotline.

They never give any details or insight into anything really. In the original trilogy all the little written text scattered on consoles, datapads, the (previously narrated) codex, and planet descriptions would give little tidbits on the world and races that enhanced the sense of a big, inhabited world. In Andromeda, most of those are used either for a cheesy joke or an unsubtle reference to something from the old games. The planet descriptions are universally just "the Scourge fucked this one up." All the socially awkward mess on the terminals in New Tuchanka really disappointed me. The Krogan and their history was one of the more interesting plot threads in old ME, but the ones on new Tuchanka apparently act like a bunch of middle schoolers. It's a bunch of little things that make you feel like the writers don't take the lore of the universe seriously.

The video gamey-ness of some of the main mechanics bothered me. Particularly the "Andromeda Viability Points" and the way your memories unlock in the Ryder quest. The AVP system is so contrived they felt the need to have Addison hang a lantern on it with her whole "it's an unfortunate abstraction, but viability is about lives Ryder. We're starving here" line. As far as Ryder's memories, going into Andromeda hot off Zelda: BotW and how they handled the amnesiac character just made this one stand out as an unfinished idea. Memory prompts? Just what am I finding, how did they get where they are, and why would my own father hide this stuff from me? Was he anticipating his own death? When did he set up all this memory encryption breadcrumb stuff? As he was dying?

Anyway, just some random thoughts from someone who finished the game last night at 55 hours and 93% on PC.

I totaly expected a late game revelation or rather a hint of who the benafactor is and what was/is his agenda, as a setup for a sequel and I would be fine with that. Nothing though. Same goes for all the other questions, not a single one gets answered, all we see is another Kett looking at the Archon's fall, which is something we already knew and doesn't expand on the story in any way whatsoever. They should have given us something, while leaving other threads to be explored. Instead we know nothing, other than the conflict is resolved in a near-future proof way but the big picture - Kett occupying the galaxycluster, is completely unresolved.

The previous games always let me with a feeling of victory, but also left me wanting more, with many mysteries left open. Escpecialy the second game, when you start getting closer to what Reapers were, just so awesome, open ended, yet still satysfying. Andromeda fucked the ending up, no way around it.

That being said, I am still on board with DLCsequels, I just want to know.

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#44 Edited by GundamGuru (778 posts) -
@ll_exile_ll said:

I didn't say the every decision in the game makes good on the idea of unforeseen consequences, just that I liked this specific example. There's some degree of it in the original trilogy, but the major decisions are pretty straightforward.

Save or destroy the collector base? Affects a war asset number in ME3 and does nothing else.

I don't know if this is still true in the Extended Cut, but on ME3's launch the decision to save or destroy the collector base determines which of the two base endings you can do if your EMS and Readiness are extremely low. Save gets you Control, and destroy gets you...well, Destroy. Moderate EMS unlocked the other option, and High EMS allowed for Synthesis.

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#45 Posted by Zirilius (1696 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll said:

I didn't say the every decision in the game makes good on the idea of unforeseen consequences, just that I liked this specific example. There's some degree of it in the original trilogy, but the major decisions are pretty straightforward.

Save or destroy the collector base? Affects a war asset number in ME3 and does nothing else.

I don't know if this is still true in the Extended Cut, but on ME3's launch the decision to save or destroy the collector base determines which of the two base endings you can do if your EMS and Readiness are extremely low. Save gets you Control, and destroy gets you...well, Destroy. Moderate EMS unlocked the other option, and High EMS allowed for Synthesis.

There was no fourth ending either which is no decision at all. That was only included in the patch.

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#46 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (2982 posts) -

@quipido said:
@freedom4556 said:

@quipido: I agree generally with all your points. I also disliked how little gravitas supposedly huge revelations had throughout the game, like the discovery that the Angara are a genetically engineered race that sprang from nothing a few millennia ago. You get, like, one bit of dialogue from a few Angaran characters; a bunch of insipid musing about the nature of God, mostly. No major quests or anything from that, and it's not relevant to the main conflict at hand, nor does it really factor into the ending. Just kinda tossed out and ignored, just like the whole 'mysterious benefactor' plotline.

They never give any details or insight into anything really. In the original trilogy all the little written text scattered on consoles, datapads, the (previously narrated) codex, and planet descriptions would give little tidbits on the world and races that enhanced the sense of a big, inhabited world. In Andromeda, most of those are used either for a cheesy joke or an unsubtle reference to something from the old games. The planet descriptions are universally just "the Scourge fucked this one up." All the socially awkward mess on the terminals in New Tuchanka really disappointed me. The Krogan and their history was one of the more interesting plot threads in old ME, but the ones on new Tuchanka apparently act like a bunch of middle schoolers. It's a bunch of little things that make you feel like the writers don't take the lore of the universe seriously.

The video gamey-ness of some of the main mechanics bothered me. Particularly the "Andromeda Viability Points" and the way your memories unlock in the Ryder quest. The AVP system is so contrived they felt the need to have Addison hang a lantern on it with her whole "it's an unfortunate abstraction, but viability is about lives Ryder. We're starving here" line. As far as Ryder's memories, going into Andromeda hot off Zelda: BotW and how they handled the amnesiac character just made this one stand out as an unfinished idea. Memory prompts? Just what am I finding, how did they get where they are, and why would my own father hide this stuff from me? Was he anticipating his own death? When did he set up all this memory encryption breadcrumb stuff? As he was dying?

Anyway, just some random thoughts from someone who finished the game last night at 55 hours and 93% on PC.

I totaly expected a late game revelation or rather a hint of who the benafactor is and what was/is his agenda, as a setup for a sequel and I would be fine with that. Nothing though. Same goes for all the other questions, not a single one gets answered, all we see is another Kett looking at the Archon's fall, which is something we already knew and doesn't expand on the story in any way whatsoever. They should have given us something, while leaving other threads to be explored. Instead we know nothing, other than the conflict is resolved in a near-future proof way but the big picture - Kett occupying the galaxycluster, is completely unresolved.

The previous games always let me with a feeling of victory, but also left me wanting more, with many mysteries left open. Escpecialy the second game, when you start getting closer to what Reapers were, just so awesome, open ended, yet still satysfying. Andromeda fucked the ending up, no way around it.

That being said, I am still on board with DLCsequels, I just want to know.

The game sets up several threads for DLC/sequels. You've got the Benefactor, the Jardaan (who were not destroyed, they just left Heleus), the Kett seen at the end is the Primus, who is the one that was trying depose the Archon and offers you a temporary truce in a side quest, and the big one being the Quarian Ark distress signal from the epilogue. This game has many more threads left for a sequel than ME1 did, which basically amounted to "Sovereign wasn't the only reaper."

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#47 Posted by Quipido (1452 posts) -

@quipido said:
@freedom4556 said:

@quipido: I agree generally with all your points. I also disliked how little gravitas supposedly huge revelations had throughout the game, like the discovery that the Angara are a genetically engineered race that sprang from nothing a few millennia ago. You get, like, one bit of dialogue from a few Angaran characters; a bunch of insipid musing about the nature of God, mostly. No major quests or anything from that, and it's not relevant to the main conflict at hand, nor does it really factor into the ending. Just kinda tossed out and ignored, just like the whole 'mysterious benefactor' plotline.

They never give any details or insight into anything really. In the original trilogy all the little written text scattered on consoles, datapads, the (previously narrated) codex, and planet descriptions would give little tidbits on the world and races that enhanced the sense of a big, inhabited world. In Andromeda, most of those are used either for a cheesy joke or an unsubtle reference to something from the old games. The planet descriptions are universally just "the Scourge fucked this one up." All the socially awkward mess on the terminals in New Tuchanka really disappointed me. The Krogan and their history was one of the more interesting plot threads in old ME, but the ones on new Tuchanka apparently act like a bunch of middle schoolers. It's a bunch of little things that make you feel like the writers don't take the lore of the universe seriously.

The video gamey-ness of some of the main mechanics bothered me. Particularly the "Andromeda Viability Points" and the way your memories unlock in the Ryder quest. The AVP system is so contrived they felt the need to have Addison hang a lantern on it with her whole "it's an unfortunate abstraction, but viability is about lives Ryder. We're starving here" line. As far as Ryder's memories, going into Andromeda hot off Zelda: BotW and how they handled the amnesiac character just made this one stand out as an unfinished idea. Memory prompts? Just what am I finding, how did they get where they are, and why would my own father hide this stuff from me? Was he anticipating his own death? When did he set up all this memory encryption breadcrumb stuff? As he was dying?

Anyway, just some random thoughts from someone who finished the game last night at 55 hours and 93% on PC.

I totaly expected a late game revelation or rather a hint of who the benafactor is and what was/is his agenda, as a setup for a sequel and I would be fine with that. Nothing though. Same goes for all the other questions, not a single one gets answered, all we see is another Kett looking at the Archon's fall, which is something we already knew and doesn't expand on the story in any way whatsoever. They should have given us something, while leaving other threads to be explored. Instead we know nothing, other than the conflict is resolved in a near-future proof way but the big picture - Kett occupying the galaxycluster, is completely unresolved.

The previous games always let me with a feeling of victory, but also left me wanting more, with many mysteries left open. Escpecialy the second game, when you start getting closer to what Reapers were, just so awesome, open ended, yet still satysfying. Andromeda fucked the ending up, no way around it.

That being said, I am still on board with DLCsequels, I just want to know.

The game sets up several threads for DLC/sequels. You've got the Benefactor, the Jardaan (who were not destroyed, they just left Heleus), the Kett seen at the end is the Primus, who is the one that was trying depose the Archon and offers you a temporary truce in a side quest, and the big one being the Quarian Ark distress signal from the epilogue. This game has many more threads left for a sequel than ME1 did, which basically amounted to "Sovereign wasn't the only reaper."

Ah ok, I didn't realise that was Primus, thanks. Yes, there are threads that are open, my main complaint is there are basicaly none that get closed.

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#48 Posted by SgtSphynx (2570 posts) -

So, I'm almost certain the benefactor is not the Illusive Man simply because you can come across two former members of Cerberus on Kadara who flat out say they left because the Illusive Man got it into his mind to start the Lazarus Project and got away from the original aim of Cerberus. Is that definitive proof? No, but it suggests to me that the Illusive Man is not involved in the Andromeda Initiative in any way.

Anyway, my only real complaint about the ending was the Archon somehow got onto the Hyperion and took control. No comment on any attack. No comment on any confrontation with the Nexus. Nothing.

I'm not discounting that he could have found the Nexus with that bullshit "saw Ryder's memories with the magical probe he injected" reasoning, but in order to get onto the Hyperion while it is docked on the Nexus means he would have had to go through the Nexus. All you see is while the Hyperion is underway, at which point fighting is occurring.

Also, holy shit is the militia fucking worthless. They couldn't hit the broadside of a barn.

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#49 Posted by LawGamer (1481 posts) -

So, I'm almost certain the benefactor is not the Illusive Man simply because you can come across two former members of Cerberus on Kadara who flat out say they left because the Illusive Man got it into his mind to start the Lazarus Project and got away from the original aim of Cerberus. Is that definitive proof? No, but it suggests to me that the Illusive Man is not involved in the Andromeda Initiative in any way.

Anyway, my only real complaint about the ending was the Archon somehow got onto the Hyperion and took control. No comment on any attack. No comment on any confrontation with the Nexus. Nothing.

I'm not discounting that he could have found the Nexus with that bullshit "saw Ryder's memories with the magical probe he injected" reasoning, but in order to get onto the Hyperion while it is docked on the Nexus means he would have had to go through the Nexus. All you see is while the Hyperion is underway, at which point fighting is occurring.

Also, holy shit is the militia fucking worthless. They couldn't hit the broadside of a barn.

And I'm almost equally certain it is TIM. First off, there are only two people I can think of off the top of my hat that would have had knowledge of the Reapers and resources to back the Initiative - TIM and The Shadow Broker. Assuming the original Shadow Broker knew about the project, one can assume that once Liara took over the job, she would have been a little more hands on in getting a ton of people involved, since she actually has first hand knowledge of the Reaper threat as well as knowing Dad Ryder. So that pretty much rules out the Shadow Broker being the benefactor.

So that leaves TIM. As far as those two scientists go, I actually think it makes it more likely that TIM was involved. He'd obviously want someone who agreed with his politics to go to Andromeda. But having people directly in his employ that he just orders to go would just create a risk of discovery. So you fire them, and then leave just enough information that the "decide" to go to Andromeda on all on their own. It's exactly the kind of thing TIM would do. Plus their mind control experiment is pretty in line with how TIM was researching indoctrination.

I'd also point out that Cora's last name is Harper. And TIM's real name is Jack Harper. And she's an human uber-biotic, which was another avenue of research TIM was pretty interested in pursuing.

And yes, there could be plenty of other people in a place the size of the Milky Way that could theoretically be super-rich. But this is BioWare. They've never met a plot point they didn't like to recycle.

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#50 Edited by extintor (1070 posts) -

I finished it (70 hours) and share many of the OPs opinions about the experience. I too enjoyed the time I spent with this game overall and thought that the writing quality was more than passable in spite of plenty of people seeming to take issue with it.

Combat was excellent but conversation dialogue options seemed to have less weight to them in terms of ability to influence outcomes than was the case in previous ME games.

One very under-developed theme was the Jardaan. Beyond fulfilling the ancient aliens trope that is a part of all ME games, Bioware ought to have dropped a few more breadcrumbs about them. We should have at least learned their motivations, and their intentions, and why they aren't around any more. Surely they aren't just Andromeda's answer to the reapers? I hope we can hope for more from DLC.

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