In all reality, the Mass Effect series needs no introduction. BioWare has created an immersive experience with a great story and the gameplay to go along with it. In this third and final game, Mass Effect 3 tries to improve on an excellent foundation for its last go around. I found the game to be extremely entertaining but the game is definitely not without its controversies. With such a deep game, I’m sure I missed a few points in this lengthy review but with the amount of content in these games, most will come away completely satisfied with not only the review but the gameplay experience as well.
Mass Effect 3 Gameplay
If you are a veteran of the series, Mass Effect 3 hasn’t changed a lot in the gameplay department. Cover is still paramount, abilities and weapons are still chosen with a selection wheel, you still must explore the galaxy, and you still have to eliminate all enemies in sight. However, the changes BioWare did implement were for the better and they also made an attempt to show they do in fact listen to the community. In Mass Effect 3, a few options return such as weapon customization and the use of grenades. Both are welcomed with open arms especially to those who love to play the “Soldier” class. Shepard is all around more nimble in combat and can jump across gaps in terrain. Leveling powers now have branching bonuses in the three of the highest tech levels rather than only the last level tier in Mass Effect 2. Several new powers, a stronger melee system, and smarter enemy A.I. all join the fight as well.
A couple key items that did not make an appearance in the game are mining for resources and the use of land vehicles. The lack of mining is a welcome time-saving change but having to evade the Reapers when they occupy an area is somewhat annoying with the new “Reaper Awareness” system. Leaving land vehicles out of the game also did not make much difference in the experience. BioWare basically took two meta-game type features out of the game and beefed up the already stellar gameplay so I really have to give them kudos for that.
Finally, for Xbox fans, Mass Effect 3 implemented Kinect capability which has turned out to be quite the hit. Being able to shout out items when switching abilities and orders to your squad not only makes it easier to pay attention to what is going on in the fight, but it also draws you into the game even more than using the selection wheel. My only advice is to use it while no one is home or use it in a room where no one can hear you. I say that speaking from experience as I got shut down pretty quick once I started using the voice capability since I was a tad noisy. That issue aside, Bioware did a great job implementing this technology into the game and should pave the way for innovations like this into other games.