Mass Effect 3- Almost Perfect

Mass Effect 3- Almost Perfect

Mass Effect 3 is almost a perfect game; words cannot describe how painfully close it came to flawlessness. We’re talking 99.99% here, 4.9 out of 5 stars, one thumb raised and another preparing to make its’ triumphant ascent! The immaculate degree to which this game succeeds cannot be overstated.
Players once again find themselves in control of Commander Shepard, an avatar whose every feature — from their gender, appearance, attitude and even sexual orientation– is customizable. Shepard has always been the best kind of video game character; one that the player can emotionally project themselves onto and imbue with their own morality and ideals.
The Reapers, an unimaginably ancient and powerful race of machines, have invaded the Milky Way, and are intent on the genocide of all sentient life. Shepard must rally the races of the galaxy, contend with their old hatreds, rivalries and prejudices, and shape them into a force that has even a slight chance of survival.
Mass Effect 3 goes to great lengths to avert the series’ previous pulp action tropes. As the war against the Reapers rages on, the player will notice refugee camps swelling with desperate denizens; shell shocked by the horrors they’ve witnessed. The entire galaxy, every civilization, every scared man, woman, and child are looking at one person to save them: Shepard, the player, you.
The first Mass Effect was little more than your standard RPG with a shooter skin on top. The third person combat and cover mechanics were clumsy at best, and weapon customization was unwieldy and over complex. The second in the series was a much better shooter, but sacrificed depth and customization for a more streamlined experience.
Functionally Mass Effect 3’s shooting isn’t all the much different than in the previous installment, but regained some of its’ RPG elements from the first game. Weapons can be outfitted with extended barrels and clips, and activated abilities have branching paths that allow the player to tweak their power set.
For the first time in the series players can put the skills they’ve learned in the single player campaign to use in the game’s online multiplayer mode. It’s pretty much just Horde mode with a leveling mechanic. You can buy booster packs that may contain new guns and upgrades with the points you earn while playing multiplayer. There’s nothing special about it, but alternatively it doesn’t detract from the single player so it’s not worth complaining about.
Mass Effect 3 is emotionally engaging, wonderfully written, and tonally perfect in every way. The shooting mechanics are fun, the classes are sufficiently customizable without becoming tedious, and the multi-player is a relatively welcome addition that didn’t detract from the single player.
Now, remember at the beginning where it said Mass Effect 3 was “almost” perfect? The ending of this game is so atrocious, so disingenuous, so heartrendingly awful that it almost defies description. A very large number of fans were disappointed, and have actually requested the developers at Bioware change the ending!
Design via fan approval seems like a monumentally bad idea, but in this case it really couldn’t hurt. For anyone who plays and beats Mass Effect 3, the ending will be the prevailing memory they’ll have of the game. Without spoiling anything, the best way to describe it is in the form of an old joke:
A man is sitting at a bar, looking forlornly into his drink. Suddenly he says to no one in particular: “You know, you spread asphalt and gravel for ten years, and do they call you ‘John the Road Builder’? No. You till the earth and raise livestock for twenty years, and do they call you ‘John the Farmer’? Nope!” He takes a long draft from his cup.
“But you screw one sheep!”

Joseph Frymire
JBN Director