Thread: Mass Effect 3
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Old 07-03-2012, 15:19:51   #9
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Let's see... sticking to gameplay and avoiding spoilers

Normal difficulty, Soldier Shepard, transfer character that went through ME1 and 2.

Tiny, hard to see targeting reticule, corrected to something more useful by zooming in/right clicking - probably by design, I've gotten used to quickly zooming, firing, then releasing the zoom. Still trainable after all these years.

The fonts all got smaller. Damn my eyes and the whippersnappers that designed the UI. Maybe 40something Apple Adventure kids aren't their target market. Xyzzy, amirite?

Enemies are better at flushing me from cover/flanking - I guess that's a good thing if you don't suck at shooters. It probably has more to do with good maps and clever spawn points than actual AI. Enemy engineers drop sentry guns. These are moderately dangerous. They will kill you in about three seconds if you stand still in the open, and they're ammunition sponges. Maybe I should not try to kill them with bullets. There are also particularly annoying guys with riot shields that need to be flanked, picked up, knocked over, or sniped through their view slits. Sniping through view slits is exceptionally satisfying, but not easy.

I imported a Mass Effect 1/2 character. This was cool, because then the game adjusts your story to match (so they say, I'm far enough along to know that someone that died due to my decisions in my first game is still good and dead). The less cool part was I started the game at level 30something, which is pretty damned powerful (I know, I know. How does one "forget" how to put incendiary ammo in their weapon?). I get the "continuity" thing from a story standpoint, but I'm not sure I like it applied to character leveling. I'm missing out on the reward of working my way up. Whether you like it or not will be personal. Lots of people feel entitled to a reward for playing the earlier games. I'm going to go out on a limb and assume the enemies you face are at least partially leveled so that they continue to be a challenge to the player. Summary: I'd rather have started at level three, not thirty, as a "reward" for playing through the earlier games.

I seem to be spending a lot of time (in the first hour or two of the game, at least) running through areas empty of enemies with my weapon drawn, while my squadmates chatter about the current mission/situation. It wasn't working for me, specifically on the moon over Palaven, the Turian homeworld. I get that they were trying to deliver some story elements while you still "played the game", but all I was doing was running down a barren path for a couple of minutes. Have a husk pop up a time or two to keep me awake, maybe?

Mildly irritating: Splash screens during map transitions disappear before I can read the first three words. Maybe that's optimized for console processing speeds. Not sure if I'm missing important information or just hints. Suspect it's just hints.

Coop multiplayer looks like it might be fun, and how well you do in multiplayer can carry over to a single player game. It's not supposed to be strictly necessary, as you can do survey missions in single player that give analagous benefits to "galactic war readiness", which in turn is supposed to affect how well things turn out at the end of the game. I may give it a try.

The survey missions are simpler and less time consuming than the ME2 mining missions. Survey here and there around the system to find planets or floating debris. Find the white spot on planetary scanners, and launch a single probe at it. Done. In fact, if you spend too much time pinging your sonar (ha) in Reaper infested areas, they start to hunt for Normandy, forcing you to leave the system until you complete another mission.

Pet peeve: The sound of using a mass relay is incredibly loud compared to the rest of the sound in the game. I keep scrambling for my speaker controls so as not to freak out our neurotic noise phobic dog. zzzzzZZZZZTTT! POW!

I picked up the DLC for the Prothean squadmember. He looks pretty cool, and he's got a handy plaguelike damage over time ability that jumps to another enemy if it still has time left on it when the first enemy dies. Not at all a must have, but nice for flavor. The mission to find him and thaw him out wasn't difficult at all aside from the last 60 seconds or so. It was more difficult finding my way around the map.

Just as I was finishing up last night's session, I found a semiautomatic assault rifle that absolutely rocks. Weapons can also be modded. The citadel is loaded with shops selling weapons and mods (ha, spoiler!). These shops can be accessed from the Normandy's armory after you've visited them. Prices looked to be about 10% higher when you "mail order" from Normandy, just like the guy in the armory said it would.

Renegade choices so far have been only moderately badass. I suppose they're trying to show even Shepard is human, and feeling the strain as the Reapers advance.

Jack is back (I guess if you got her killed previously, she won't be). She's more believable to me now than she was in ME2. I won't say more.

I'm rambling now. Put it down to lack of sleep.
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