So I think by now we are all aware that Mass Effect Andromeda has been released, and was met with a mixture of criticism. I think my favorite of those is that people are calling ME:A the Dragon Age Inquisition of Space! And I totally get why people are saying that, but it makes me giggle more than anything else.
Full disclosure before we get into things; the only other ME Game I have played is ME:2 because I heard it was the best out of the series. And I didn’t really care for it. In fact I did not pre-order Andromeda, and I debated about weather to get it or wait for it to go on sale for about two weeks. So basically I’m not a fangirl of any sorts, but I’m also not a hater, like I just didn’t mesh with the game (ME:2) thats all.
So before we get into spoilers here are my general impressions of the game:
- SPACE- lol obvious one, but in the game they make it feel like space is big and meant to be explored and that was kinda the point; I think they did that well.
- Bugs- there are so many bugs in the game that I felt like I was playing a Bethesda game.
- Combat- so kick ass, the only other ME game I’ve played is ME:2 and I hated the combat a lot. Actually, I just hated everything about that game. The ME series really isn’t for me, and yet here I find myself playing ME:A *sigh*
- UI- clunky at best. I feel like they could have simplified so many things in the menus and had it be a lot cleaner.
- Multiplayer-worth it. Or well, it was, until the latest patch. Maybe they will fix it, who knows?!
- Story-Good, and makes me want to know what happens next. Feels like there will be DLC in our future.
- New Game Plus- fuuuun. I really wish they had done this with Dragon Age!
- Voice Acting & Scripts- Needs work, and I feel like that is being nice. Not all the characters did horrible, but some where pretty bad, and I feel it’s a direct effect of the script writers.
- Animations- I feel like at this point I don’t really need to say anything, but they are pretty bad at times, other times it’s straight up cringe, and in rare moments its fine. (More about this in the spoiler section!)
Ok now time for spoilers, if you don’t want to be spoiled please stop reading!
So we’re out in space the Milky Way is destroyed and we have no planet to call home, looks likes it time to become the hero our dad always knew we could be! Crash landing on a planet and having my virtual dad die was oddly unsatisfying, and the Ryder Twins reflected this. Neither character had much dialog to express they were sad, there wasn’t really a cut scene that they showed emotion about it or anything. Kinda disappointing…. I’m not saying they need to be depressed about it but mourning is a natural process that felt like it didn’t exisit for the twins. And, for God’s sake Jaal showed more emotion when he learned the Kaat were his own people, he was depressed!
Then we get to the Nexus, get our ship and get on our way. Out of all the things, and tech in the Milky Way, I guess it’s comforting to see that Google Glass actually makes it somewhere. I thought it was lame looking irl and its just as lame looking in space. But at least it makes for a good joke.
Did anyone else feel really overwhelmed with the amount of quests that exist in the game? In my new game plus I’ve decided to only do things that actually effect the main story line and what a difference it’s making! Some have said that the side quests have feel like they have more meaning than they did in DA:I but I disagree I think both games had a fair number of pointless quests.
I actually had a lot of fun exploring all the planets. That is until I got to Kadara, then I was kinda was over exploring. I think it was at that point that I felt the true grind of the game. Because it really was just more of the same, but on a different planet.
*Side note: does anyone actually scan planets? I think I did a handful and never really got the point of it.
I did, very much enjoy meeting the new species for the game- the Angara- they are a pretty cool group. I think it’s super interesting that they made the Angara be so connected to their emotions and feelings and also be incredibly tough. How they stood up for themselves against the Kaat when it could have been easier to give in to them. I think the team did a great job handling the new species and their background, culture, society, all of that fun stuff.
I also thought Meridian was super interesting, as well as the benefactor and how they play into all this. I even find the Kaat interesting and I am curious about what the rest of their society is like. I also want to know more about the Jaardan, and if there are any of them still out there. The world development and story was really good for me and kept me playing, as well as the combat.
Alright, let’s talk about the elephant in the room; the animations. I have a problem with the animations because other games are rising the bar, and I expected at least the same level as DA:I and was greatly disappointed. The game I played before this was Horizon Zero Dawn, AMAZING animations and cut scenes. Before that Final Fantasy XV, also AMAZING animations. When AAA games and studios are raising the standards and Bio Ware decided to call up their B string for a main title game shit is going to go wrong. That is just how its going to be. They are asking for trouble.
(Also if I WAS a hardcore fan and I found out they let their B-string do this, I would take it as a slap in the face, and feel like Bio Ware is just cashing in.)
Some of my experiences which led me to having issues with the animations:
- Standing still, eye lids pulsing, going larger and smaller for no apparent reason.
- Camera often didn’t show who was talking or what was going on and would get stuck looking at the sky.
- Lack of expression when saying something angry, sad, or even happy.
- Smiles are creepy as F most of the time and made me cringe so bad. Dialog and expressions didn’t match up.
- While having a conversation having the person I was talking to would be moving around, or doing something inappropriate (like scanning me, so weird) and my character wouldn’t notice, like it was just odd.
I know it seems like I’ve been harsh in my thoughts, and I have been. But it’s because at the end of the day I actually do like the game, and I want there to be more. Yes, there is a ton of stuff they need to work on, but hopefully they will pull it together for the next game. Like I’ve mentioned I actually enjoyed the story, and combat. It’s just everything else that got in the way.
If you have any thoughts on the game, or disagree with me, let’s have a constructive conversation in the comments or over on twitter! I would love to know how other people have faired in the game.