Systems: PS3, 360
Release: January 26, 2010 (360), January 18, 2011 (PS3)
Mass Effect 2 is a sci-fi shooter available for PS3 and Xbox 360. It’s new to Sony’s console, and the PS3 version delivers in a big way over it’s 360 cousin. You get over six hours of extra content with a new copy of the game, and the graphics and animation are slightly upgraded. Another big thing to note is the PS3 version runs on Mass Effect 3‘s engine, so it runs a little smoother. As far as the game itself goes, it’s superb on all consoles, and there really aren’t many complaints.
Mass Effect 2′s story picks up where the first game left off, so 360 owners will know what’s going on. For PS3 owners however, you will have to download an animated comic for a recap of prior events. It’s a cool idea and works really well. The game’s graphics are stellar. It really shines in the character models and wide open environments. Facial animations and details are all beautiful. There is texture pop in however, which can sometimes be a bit annoying, but it’s not too big of an issue. Another small complaint is that some indoor areas tend to be on the bland side. Overall, the game is gorgeous, and these complaints won’t hinder the experience much. There is some slowdown from time to time, but it’s to be expected with such a large scale game. There is always a lot going on, so it’s forgivable.
Mass Effect delivers in a big way in the sound department. The voice acting is phenomenal. Each character is brought to life with top notch voice actors. Every character is unique and likable, having their own little quirks and skills. You can hear different emotions in their voices, whether it’s fear, panic or joy, it really makes for a great presentation. The sound effects are superb as well. From explosions and gunshots to enemy roars, it’s all very well done. The overall sound presentation is as good as it gets in video gaming.
Mass Effect 2′s game play is enjoyable and extremely fun. The game play mechanics are some of the best I’ve ever seen. You can tell the game was made with ambition and handled with care. It’s controls are simple enough for the average player to pick up and play with not too much difficulty. There are also plenty of difficulty levels to choose from at the start, so it gives anyone a chance to enjoy themselves while experiencing the fantastic story. Speaking of the story, it’s excellent. It;s one of those games you look forward to playing when you get home from a long day at work, simply because it’s game play is so fun and it’s story is so intriguing and interesting. Overall, Mass Effect 2 is a phenomenal. I’ve never liked space-themed games or even movies, but all of the positive reception the game got, I had to give it a go. It’s money well spent. It’s definitely not a game you buy, play through and trade in, it’s one of those titles you’re proud to have in your collection. It screams “quality”. Other shooters need to take notes from Bioware’s creation, because it’s just better than everything else…Call of Duty (cough). It improves upon it’s predecessor in every possible way, delivering a superb story, tight game mechanics, fun game play and an enticing story. Mass Effect 2 is one that you do not want to miss. Period.