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RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 3/2/2010 7:31:40 PM   
superdan


Posts: 8304
Joined: 31/7/2008
*SPOILERS*!!!!!

I had Garrus take control of the second fire team and Jack for the biotic barrier, but I put the Doc in the pipes and Thane leading the extraction and they both bought it. I wasn't too bothered about Thane (he wasn't loyal and he's dying anyway) but I was well gutted when the Doc got killed! His Gilbert and Sullivan genuinely made me lol 

*END SPOILERS*


(in reply to Harry Tuttle)
Post #: 151
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 3/2/2010 7:36:24 PM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.
quote:

ORIGINAL: superdan

His Gilbert and Sullivan genuinely made me lol 



As well as his sex tips that was one of the highlights of the game for me. It just came out of the blue and like you I genuinely did laugh out loud. Tali and Garrus reminiscing about the lifts that used to be in the Citadel was another nice humorous touch that was well appreciated. Well by me it was anyway, the lifts in the first game were a proper pain in the arse by the 2nd or 3rd playthrough.

_____________________________

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Your knowledge of scientific biological transmogrification is only outmatched by your zest for kung-fu treachery!

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(in reply to superdan)
Post #: 152
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 3/2/2010 7:56:09 PM   
i stole your car


Posts: 142
Joined: 7/3/2009
No way man, Morinth was annoying as hell and Samara is surprisingly hot for someone who is blue, older than my great grandmother and a videogame character.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Scott_
(I've watched The Terminator a few times...)


Speaking of the terminator. Did anyone think the final boss...

Just started my Newgame+ to go for the insanity achievement. Kind of disappointed that I didn't get to rechoose my class, considering most other things are reset (Don't get to carry over all those precious renegade points.) I've been a Vanguard up until now but Charge is practically a suicide button on insanity mode. At least at the moment it feels like it is. On normal it was as simple as zipping across the map, shotgunning a motherfucker in the face before shooting off to the otherside of the map to take out another. It's just not possible to be that reckless now.


< Message edited by i stole your car -- 3/2/2010 7:59:05 PM >

(in reply to Scott_)
Post #: 153
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 3/2/2010 8:10:17 PM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.
quote:

ORIGINAL: i stole your car

No way man, Morinth was annoying as hell and Samara is surprisingly hot for someone who is blue, older than my great grandmother and a videogame character.



But her and Morinth were identical. She was annoying though and Samara has a much sexier voice.

quote:

quote:

ORIGINAL: Scott_
(I've watched The Terminator a few times...)


Speaking of the terminator. Did anyone think the final boss...

Just started my Newgame+ to go for the insanity achievement. Kind of disappointed that I didn't get to rechoose my class, considering most other things are reset (Don't get to carry over all those precious renegade points.) I've been a Vanguard up until now but Charge is practically a suicide button on insanity mode. At least at the moment it feels like it is. On normal it was as simple as zipping across the map, shotgunning a motherfucker in the face before shooting off to the otherside of the map to take out another. It's just not possible to be that reckless now.



I'm doing another run through with a different character (did do the New Game+ for the level 30 cheev though, took me all of 20 mins). My first character was level 59, killed Wrex, boned Liara, lost Ashley and killed council. I played through that as a Vanguard. My new character was level 53, didn't kill Wrex, boned Liara (I love blue skin, what can I say), lost Kaidan and saved the council. I'm playing through this as an Adept so with the totally different choices and different class I'm hoping for a pretty different experience.

_____________________________

Acting...Naturaaal

Your knowledge of scientific biological transmogrification is only outmatched by your zest for kung-fu treachery!

Blood Island. So called because it's the exact shape of some blood

(in reply to i stole your car)
Post #: 154
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 4/2/2010 7:11:57 PM   
Peter Griffin


Posts: 2891
Joined: 30/9/2005
Up to the bit where you recruit Legion, here are my pros/cons so far...

Pros;
Graphics and sound are supoib, especially the score.
Combat is improved and i'm glad they reigned in the rpg elements, alot leaner.
Brilliant story well told, i felt like i was in a sci-fi film.
Loved how the stuff you did in Mass Effect 1 followed over into 2, good stuff.

Cons;
Scanning planets is boring, scanning Miranda is not.
They need to cut back with the amount of people in your team for 3, too many.
The alien singing....nah that was funny as fuck

Overall loving it at the mo, just hope it has a killer ending like 1.

< Message edited by Peter Griffin -- 4/2/2010 7:15:53 PM >


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Post #: 155
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 5/2/2010 9:06:03 AM   
directorscut


Posts: 10890
Joined: 30/9/2005
SPOILERS

As a huge fan of Mass Effect, probably my favourite game of all time I can only say...


Very disappointing.

Pros:


Jennifer Hale continues to deliver the greatest voice performance in video game history (despite a couple of instances of poor direction).
Tali and seeing the Quarian fleet.
Samara.
Kelly Chambers was a delight and is exactly the type of character Dr. Chakwas should have been in ME1 delivering regular reports and thoughts on your crew members.
Combat is smoother and more visceral.
Technically superior in every way.  No framerate drops or loading textures that dogged ME1.


Cons:

Story:

The story in comparison with the first game is poor and as a continuation is illogical and disappointing.  If you took out all the time recruiting people and mining for resources it would be what - a couple of hours?  It doesnít progress the core story of the trilogy at all.  What exactly did I achieve in this game?  In the original I became a Spectre, became Commander of my very own ship, stopped the Thorian threat, stopped Saren and the Reapers, saved the council and established humanityís place on the galactic state, and finally went away determined to kick some Reaper butt.  And at the end of Mass Effect 2, weíre at the same place we were at the end of Mass Effect except with a new version of our old ship and a new crew I donít like anywhere near as much as the previous.  We do get interesting developments with the geth and quarians and the krogan genophage but itís all too little in a 30+ hour game.

In terms of an exciting story I fail to see how this supposed suicide mission is in any way a bigger threat than what occurred in the original game.  In Mass Effect every main mission and new world kept building to that epic finale.  At the end the Citadel and Alliance fleet were in immediate danger, with the rest of the galaxy sure to follow.  In Mass Effect 2 you spend 30 hours or so recruiting people and upgrading your ship to go on one mission where the only people in immediate danger are you and your crew.  And the only way you or your crew are going to be in any danger is if you ignore all forms of logic.  Mass Effect escalated and was as excellently paced as an free-roaming RPG could be, whereas this is remains stagnent for a large section of the game and feels rushed at the end.  Also the sidequests in Mass Effect were far better woven into the overall story of Commander Shepard and it felt like she was achieving something in galaxy with her new found Spectre status and spaceshipĖ uncovering Cerberus, and helping the Alliance.   I donít know what the heck most of the sidequests in Mass Effect 2 were about or how they related to what Shepard was doing overall.

The opening hour of so was just a painful experience. I hated pretty much everything unfolding in front of my eyes.  Killing Shepard and a two year gap is clearly done only to reboot the series for newcomers.  I hate not being in control of Shepardís life for that long.  Pretty much everything you achieved in the original game is shot in the face.  Your Spectre status means zilch in this game.  The council donít give a damn about you.  The relationships you developed with your crew has been severed (more on that later).  I hated being forced to work for Cerberus and I hated even more the lame attempts to justify it.  My paragon Shepard would never work for Cerberus, she spent a great deal of the original game trying to take them down, but here she is forced to do so and any attempt to question it is just brushed aside.  Itís like the writers said, ďYouíd know what would be cool and a total twist? Shepard working for Cerberus!Ē without actually playing the original game to realize what Cerberus actually are.  They are pretty much future Nazis, believing in their superiority and exterminating and testing on anyone who doesnít fit the bill.  Is that the type of group the hero of humanity should be working for?

Go back to the end of the original game.  There was so much potential there to continue Mass Effect 2 immediately afterwards and have Commander Shepard now fully utilising her Spectre status and support from the council and investigate the reaper treat, evolving the story and the characters.  Killing Shepard and changing the world around her almost completely resets Shepard rather than developing the character from the word go.  In fact Iím pretty sure Shepard doesnít grow as a character at all in this game. 

Characters:

All the justifications as to why we canít recruit the original crew are brushed away and infuriating.  At the beginning of the game it was essentially this:

Shepard:  Can I recruit this person who helped me fight my greatest battle and who I have complete faith in for this dangerous mission?

Illusive Man:  No, they are unavailable.

Shepard:  All right then, just give me your list of psychos I wouldnít trust with a ballpoint pen.

Later we meet Liara, Kaidan/Ashley and Wrex and it doesnít get any better.  Wrex is the only one with a satisfactory role in this game and a decent reason as to why he canít join you.

What they did to Liara was unforgivable.  I went into this game prepared to be disappointed in this regard because I knew she was only a cameo in the game and not a squadmate but seeing how they completely bastardised her character made me not want her to be in the game at all.  There is nothing of the Liara we fell in love with in the first game left.  And considering she was my love interest in the first game, the meeting between her and Shepard was so cold and emotionless it was like a stab in the heart.  Kaidan, who I had survive in Mass Effect fared a bit better because his character wasnít destroyed and actually said all the things my Shepard should have said about Cerberus and how rubbish the situation is.  The whole situation with our love interests from the original game was horribly handled.  Itís like BioWare thought of everything they could do to piss off the fans that loved those characters and put them in the game.

They also completely dropped the ball in regards to how the Mass Effect 2 crew should be.  The crew should have been your surviving crew plus a couple of new ones to freshen it up and add a new dynamic.  Instead we get a nearly entirely new squad, so instead of developing and deepening the characters now we have to set-up eight new characters.  Thatís far too many and the characterisation and dynamic of the crew really suffers from it. 

If you listened to any BioWare representative in the run up to Mass Effect 2 you would hear the word ďemotionally engagingĒ over and over again.  Apart from anger at my beloved Mass Effect being ripped apart in front of my eyes I wasnít emotionally engaged at all because I didnít care for any of these new characters, bar one Ė Samara, who is the only character who comes close to the original crew.  The scenes with her and Shepard talking in the observation deck were pretty much the high point of the game.  They were beautifully done with fantastic camera angles and great acting both digitally and vocally.  The other characters are dull, shallow or bland (Jacob, Grunt, Thane, Miranda), unlikable psychos (Subject Zero, Zaleed), the comic relief guy (Mordin) or a robot who doesnít come close to HK-47.  You spend so much of the game recruiting these people you never really feel like youíve gone through an experience with them.  None of them are given enough time or indeed the space to develop.  Itís an inherent flaw in the plot of recruiting the ďbest of the bestĒ.  None of them can improve; we know what they are capable of before we even meet them.  None of them have to face challenges or overcome something they arenít initially capable of.  You didnít know what Garrus, Wrex, Tali or Liara were about when they joined you but the new Mass Effect 2 characters are pretty much who they are in their dossiers.  In the original game you get all your squadmates early on in the game and you feel like youíve gone through the game with them, your crew grew together and friends and relationships were forged.    Samara is only one new squadmate I can consider having developed a friendship with.  If BioWare wanted me to be emotionally engaged they should have put the people I cared about with me during this mission.


Lack of squad interaction is a big part of the problem with the new crew.  In Mass Effect team mates often spoke to each other on planets and in missions and it helped you bond with the characters and see their quirks.  Dragon Age: Origins did this even better and I was hoping Mass Effect 2 would follow suits.  How disappointing that interaction with and between your squad has been all put stripped from Mass Effect 2!  You canít even press A to get your companionís thoughts on the place your in like in the original game.  You can only do it at a few choice areas.

On a general note the change in tone was disheartening.  The original Mass Effect was very well written, eloquent piece of sci-fi.  It was like Star Trek but with a slightly darker underbelly.  Mass Effect 2 resembles Gears of War at times with its increased swearing and Subject Zero is a Fallout 3 raider not a Mass Effect character.  Even Commander Shepard, even though I was playing paragon was too snarky and overly aggressive at times, at odds with the character I was trying to play.

Lack of Immersion:


Mass Effect felt like a giant galaxy with tons to discover and the main worlds like pretty big place.  In Mass Effect 2, the new worlds of Omega and Illium donít seem anywhere near as big.  The fact that the Citadel is now only three floors and the human embassy is a joke.  Itís borderline pathetic for what was once one of the most magnificent places in video games.  It seems so damn small compared to the expanse of the Presidium and Wards in the original.  The replacing of elevators with loading screen to placate ADD afflicted gamers also takes away from the immersion.  When you went from place to place in Mass Effect you felt like YOU were going there.  The Citadel felt like a real building. The Normandy felt like a ship.  With all the loading screens between places now everywhere feels like a segmented level.  It breaks the fourth wall too much.  Mass Effect was an experience.  Mass Effect 2 reminds the player too much that it is a video game with levels and distinct breaks.  What the heck what was that Joker mission about?  Being someone other than Commander Shepard even for a couple of minutes is a massive immersion breaker.

Now whereís my new Mako?  Scanning planets is rubbish.  Not only is it tedious there is no sense of discovery like in Mass Effect.  In Mass Effect every cluster had something to discover, sidequests opened up all over the place.  You felt like you were exploring strange new worlds, seeking out new life and new civilisations and bolding going where no man has gone before.  It wasnít perfect and it was a bit repetitive after 30 hours but itís a damn sight more exciting and fun than shooting probes at planets for hours!  There are barely any sidequests in Mass Effect 2 and the ones that are there are too short and feel like mini-levels in a game.  The galaxy feels empty.

RPG Elements:

Combat is generally improved Ė itís smoother and more visceral but it also now feels like any other cover third person shooter trying to be Gears of War.  Whereís my XP for killing things?  Whereís my stat based weapons?  Where's my stat based combat skills?  In Mass Effect you felt like you progressed and became stronger throughout the game, but in this I could beat the entire game with the first pistol you get and it wouldnít seem any more difficult.  Whereís my inventory?  You know what I love about RPGs? Loot!  Again finding weapons and armour with better stats that you can compare gives you a sense of progression and character growth.  Lack of armour for you and your crew members also bites as is the inability to sell them.

Choices from Mass Effect:


The choices we made from Mass Effect have no real affect the game.  Whatís most aggrieving is that some of the minor choices you made have a more satisfactory conclusion in the form of an e-mail than all the important ones you made.  Why does what choice you made in regards to Helena Blake have roughly the same amount of impact as they choice you made between who to rescue on Virmire? Absolutely ridiculous.

The major choices you make in Mass Effect have no real, significant impact on the game at all.

Did you save Ashley or Kaidan?  Doesnít really matter.  Each gets the same two minute cameo.  Whereas the real consequence of that decision should have been that you would only be able to recruit one or the other in Mass Effect 2.  Whether you saved Wrex is handled better, but still the real consequence should have been to be able to recruit him or to have to find a new recruit (or you could dump him for the new recruit anyway).

Did you romance Liara?  Doesnít really matter.  You get the game cold, depressing scenes regardless.  Shepard doesnít even acknowledge that they had a relationship during their meeting.

Did you save the Council or let them perish?  Doesnít really matter.  Again a two minute cameo and they treat your actions in the previous game as completely irrelevant.

Did you recommend Anderson or Udina:  Doesnít really matter because neither help you in any way.  Itís just a change in whoís who in cutscenes.  There are no gameplay incentives.  A great way to pay off this choice would have been that you were taking quests from whoever you appointed to the council and that objectives of these quests would changes based on their different attitudes.

And finally:


I am gutted that Iíll have to play with boring Male Shepard to romance Tali.

In conclusion:

Mass Effect 2 is a pretty good game, one that is probably fantastic for people who never played the first game (idiots) and who donít care about the story, characters and choices as much as I do and just want a top notch shooter.  But as a continuation of Mass Effect I was left feeling empty inside when I completed it.  It didnít feel like a continuation like The Two Towers, it felt more like Star Trek III in which the only reason fore being was to revise and undo what happened in the previous film.

Iíve never been so let down by a game before.  I never really cared this much about a game and its sequel before.  This was literally a game Iíve been waiting for since the minute I beat the original.  Before Mass Effect was released BioWare made claims and promises that it would be the start of a continuous trilogy where the playerís choice would have big, concussive effects throughout the trilogy.  After loving the hell out of Mass Effect I wanted that to come true, but so far with Mass Effect 2 all those promises were just sound and fury.

After the relatively by-the-numbers Dragon Age: Origins and now this (and turning KOTOR into a MMO) I am deeply worried about the future of BioWare.  Probably all EA's fault.


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(in reply to Peter Griffin)
Post #: 156
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 5/2/2010 9:07:28 AM   
HIM


Posts: 9734
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Star Trekkin', across the universe
I'm up to the point where I can go an enter the rift thing to take it to the Collectors but I'm just going round doing side quests, recruiting the rest of the team and making them loyal. While the game mechanics are a definate improvement over the first, I'm not really into the story. It feels like it really hasn't gotten going yet and there's no real sense of urgency or threat. Maybe that's just the nature of this type of game. What you make up for in exploration and freedom of choice you lose in the sense of a tightly scripted and engaging narrative.

(in reply to Peter Griffin)
Post #: 157
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 5/2/2010 12:40:36 PM   
thatlittlemonkey


Posts: 8123
Joined: 24/10/2005
Bit of free bonus DLC anyone?  http://www.oxm.co.uk/article.php?id=17120

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Post #: 158
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 5/2/2010 1:38:12 PM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.
Bloody hell dc, must have taken you longer to type that than it took me to play the game.
 
Anyway a few points and a different take. Spoilers aplenty.
 
For starters you've been ragging on the fact that it's a new team for months so you obviously weren't going to like the new members, your mind had already been made up. Personally I agree with you that there were too many characters, I'd have lost Zaeed (what was the point in him, you couldn't even interact with the fucker, granted he was DLC but still) and Project Zero (and maybe Jacob) because they were by far the weaker characters. The only character from the first game I would have liked on my team as well as Tali and Garrus would be Liara though. Personally I hated Ashley the racist and Kaidan the (omni)tool (Kaidan especially) and was glad that neither was available as a team member. I liked all the rest of the new characters.
 
Mordin for starters, just because he had some funny lines doesn't mean he was there just as comedy relief. I liked the fact that I got to learn more about the genophage and a bit more about the Salarians. I liked having to defrost Miranda and gaining her loyalty much like I enjoyed doing the same with Morrigan in DA:O. I thought Thane was a very interesting character with a pretty deep back story and enjoyed getting to know more about the motives and functionality of the Geth through Legion. I also found the conflicted Krogan, who doesn't (yet) know his role in the Galaxy, slant they took with Grunt to be a pretty interesting angle and like you I found Samara to be very interesting indeed. Personally when I play an RPG I like to get to know my team from scratch. If I already know them then what's the point (did you notice that Garrus had the least to say of anyone?). I don't want to spend 30+ hours getting to know a team I already know. What the hell would be the point in that?
 
As for your assertion that there's no threat in the game, well the threat are still the Reapers. Personally I loved the revelation that the Collector's were genetically modified Protheans used by the Reapers to do their bidding. It gave an idea of what lies ahead for the human race if the Reapers are successful. And as for there being no danger to anyone but yourself and your crew, tell that to the tens of thousands of humans that were abducted and turned into mush by the Collectors.
 
I agree with you that the story was tighter in the first but IMO the 2nd part of a trilogy is nearly always weaker narratively (notable exceptions in the film world being Empire Strikes Back and Godfather 2). For example I thought LOTR:TTT was battle heavy and plot light compared to what came before and after it.
 
I couldn't possibly disagree more strongly with you that the cookie cutter 2 variety side quests in the first were better than the ones in the sequel. You say you felt like you were a badass Spectre taking down Cerberus. Personally after a few hours I felt oh fuck no, not another spaceship with the exact same layout as all the other spaceships I've come across. Or ooh I wonder which of the 2 varieties of base this one is going to be. It's a credit to the story of the first game that I class it as one of the best games I've ever played because there was a lot of fat that needed to be trimmed. The Mako was one of them, I found trekking around random planets fighting against the awful controls, the odd occasional Thresher Maw and the Geth to be as bad as scanning planets personally. Another thing I thought needed streamlining was the inventory system. Like you I enjoy picking up loot in RPG's but I found myself spending a lot of time converting stuff into omni gel in the first game. Can't say I miss that, at all.
 
A lot of your other points are fair enough. You say your Paragon Shepard would never work for Cerberus. I say mine would do whatever it takes to save humanity. I went against Cerberus every chance I got. I sent info to the Alliance and I blew stuff up that they wanted to keep. Effectively I made them my bitch. As Shepard says at the end, they work for me now.
 
I'm personally not too bothered about the size of the Citadel (or indeed other planets) being cut down. It makes sense actually considering the place was nearly razed to the ground in the first game. Plus it's only the hub that's shortened. The missions take place there as well, just in sections that you can't revisit (why would you want to?). I bet there's far more explorable area in the sequel than in the first game (if you discount generic planets you trundle about in your mako of course). Also I found at least 40 odd side missions, which ranged from traversing a precariously balanced crashed ship to solving a little puzzle to get shield generators working again as well as your standard base infiltration missions.
 
Plot wise I thought the game was weaker for reasons I've already stated above but for me stripping down a lot of the excess of the first game made for a more enjoyable gaming experience. Can't say I miss the swaying aiming reticule at the earlier levels for one thing. There are other points you make that I disagree with (and a few I agree with also) but I feel I've rambled enough for now.
 
Horses for courses and all that but personally I find that a few of your complaints have little substance. I wholeheartedly agree with your views on the treatment of Liara though. Very disappointing. I hope she gets redeemed in the 3rd game because as far as I'm concerned the only thing the females of ME2 are doing is keeping the bed warm for her return.
 
Roll on Mass Effect 3.

< Message edited by Harry Tuttle -- 5/2/2010 1:41:24 PM >


_____________________________

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Your knowledge of scientific biological transmogrification is only outmatched by your zest for kung-fu treachery!

Blood Island. So called because it's the exact shape of some blood

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Post #: 159
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 5/2/2010 2:07:27 PM   
Scott_

 

Posts: 4203
Joined: 26/6/2008
From: Leeds
Whats with all the hate for Jack/Subject Zero, she's awesome. I love me a psychopath. I much prefer the new squad to the old one, Ashley, Kaiden and Tali I found boring as hell. Garrus was alright (much improved this time round). Wrex was the best but I killed his ass on Virmire (I don't like people stepping out of line) yeah it was a bad decision and I regret it but thats whats great about these games they get you emotionally involved. Hell, I even regretted not saving the Workers on Zaeeds mission, only a little though...

I like being involved with Cerberus too, the Illusive Man is ace and I swear in Mass Effect 3 I will find him and take his eyes for Shepard.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Harry Tuttle

I couldn't possibly disagree more strongly with you that the cookie cutter 2 variety side quests in the first were better than the ones in the sequel. You say you felt like you were a badass Spectre taking down Cerberus. Personally after a few hours I felt oh fuck no, not another spaceship with the exact same layout as all the other spaceships I've come across. Or ooh I wonder which of the 2 varieties of base this one is going to be. It's a credit to the story of the first game that I class it as one of the best games I've ever played because there was a lot of fat that needed to be trimmed. The Mako was one of them, I found trekking around random planets fighting against the awful controls, the odd occasional Thresher Maw and the Geth to be as bad as scanning planets personally. Another thing I thought needed streamlining was the inventory system. Like you I enjoy picking up loot in RPG's but I found myself spending a lot of time converting stuff into omni gel in the first game. Can't say I miss that, at all


I 100% agree with this. That side of Mass Effect was awful, I prefer scanning for resources that are useful in ME2 that actually help you with upgrades etc than going around generic Planet # 17 looking for generic merc base #32 in the damn Mako, searching for Minerals that don't appear to do anything at all.

quote:

ORIGINAL: thatlittlemonkey

Bit of free bonus DLC anyone?† http://www.oxm.co.uk/article.php?id=17120


Awesome! You are my hero. Got me a sweet ass Recon Hood now.

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Post #: 160
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 5/2/2010 5:43:02 PM   
Yeti


Posts: 1914
Joined: 10/2/2006
From: I hate Jimmy Page.
Well, that finished that, then. To be frank, it was just... empty. Hardly a nightmare of a game, and I won't be tackling it on Insanity level since, well, it didn't immerse me totally the first time round. Just making the enemies harder would slow the game down to a crawl, and since the story was so short, Most events were fresh in my mind, which is the exact opposite of the first, where I did indeed feel like jumping right back in. I'm glad I actually just chose to rent this, as I'd have sporked my own eyeballs out had I finished it in a pretty lazy four days. With a ruddy stomach bug. Which may or may not have anything to do with anything.

Anyhooo, I'm sad now. Which may also have something to do with the fact I boned Jack. I dig psychos, me. Plus the Chuck chick looked weird.

Nice touch on Adam Baldwin being in there n'all, but it doesn't save it in my eyes, sadly.

As was said before, roll on number three, but I will be waiting with jaded eyes.


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Post #: 161
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 6/2/2010 11:29:05 AM   
superdan


Posts: 8304
Joined: 31/7/2008
quote:

ORIGINAL: Scott_

quote:

ORIGINAL: Harry Tuttle

I couldn't possibly disagree more strongly with you that the cookie cutter 2 variety side quests in the first were better than the ones in the sequel. You say you felt like you were a badass Spectre taking down Cerberus. Personally after a few hours I felt oh fuck no, not another spaceship with the exact same layout as all the other spaceships I've come across. Or ooh I wonder which of the 2 varieties of base this one is going to be. It's a credit to the story of the first game that I class it as one of the best games I've ever played because there was a lot of fat that needed to be trimmed. The Mako was one of them, I found trekking around random planets fighting against the awful controls, the odd occasional Thresher Maw and the Geth to be as bad as scanning planets personally. Another thing I thought needed streamlining was the inventory system. Like you I enjoy picking up loot in RPG's but I found myself spending a lot of time converting stuff into omni gel in the first game. Can't say I miss that, at all


I 100% agree with this. That side of Mass Effect was awful, I prefer scanning for resources that are useful in ME2 that actually help you with upgrades etc than going around generic Planet # 17 looking for generic merc base #32 in the damn Mako, searching for Minerals that don't appear to do anything at all.



In complete agreement. I don't mind the scanning because, as Scott says, at least you actually get something out of it. Driving around the countless moons/planets, getting stuck on rocks and going through the same bases over and over again for no real reason gets very tiresome after the first playthrough.

While I agree with some of your criticisms dc (particularly Liara getting brushed aside and the stripped-down character stats) most I would disagree with. It sounds as though you just wanted the exact same game again, but polished and tarted up a bit. I actually welcomed the change in direction as I felt it was fresher - familiar but also new.
It's also worth considering that this one was made with the 3rd installment very firmly in mind, which I never felt was the case with ME1. Everything to this point is just progression of the story, and we may well find that what seemed plot-light in this one proves critical to the story overall. Personally I can't wait to find out what happens next


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Post #: 162
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 6/2/2010 1:53:22 PM   
thepluginbaby


Posts: 997
Joined: 16/10/2005
From: deep space... erm y'know DEEP space
I would just like to say that I actually quite enjoyed the mining bits. Discovering a new planet rich with resources, scanning the surface to come across a hefty spike of element zero.

Im playing through as a renegade vanguard on insanity now. Combat is so much more tougher and requires so much more tactical thinking. Still think the cover mechanics are a bit retarded sometimes. If Bioware wanted to go ahead with a more flexible cover system like Gears or Uncharted (with swat turns and maybe blind fire) it wouldn't go amiss. I think Mass Effect 3 will probably capitalise on these kind of elements, since Bioware has proven that toning down the conventional rpg mechanics has worked a treat in creating a sprawling action game.

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Post #: 163
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 8/2/2010 3:22:06 PM   
rich


Posts: 5145
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Neo Kobe
Mass Effect 2 - gets a low 9/10 (Mass Effect 1 gets a high 9/10)
35 hours well spent - now back to get a Paragon file in the original ! :P

Pros:
Excellent crew characters and loyalty missions
Side quests and plantets mostly quite varied
Great action
Huge replay value
No more texture pop-in or item management, and none of those repeated moon base/mine/hideout environments

Cons:
Scanning is terrible and takes away the feel of space exploration, was a hovercraft replacement of the Mako too hard?
Antagonists very underdeveloped, hard to feel the threat most of the time
Fuel for the ship turns out to be totally pointless, so why include it?
Finale not quite up there with the vertical Citadel ascent and Saren showdown (LOL Lylat Wars)
Bugs like invisible enemies so combat wont finish
Feels episodic at times, some missions are about 20 minutes long and keep taking you back to the ship
After being so into the archeology stuff, Liara is now this??
Some planets very small for what I hoped for - Krogan homeworld is about 4 rooms big


< Message edited by rich -- 8/2/2010 3:52:00 PM >


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Post #: 164
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 8/2/2010 10:22:19 PM   
HIM


Posts: 9734
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Star Trekkin', across the universe
*SPOILERS BEWARE*

Completed it last night and my emotions are mixed. I think it suffers from a very saggy middle section. It starts off well enough with its epic opening set piece and completely flips things on their head, but as soon as you get to the point where you have to recruit your team it slows down to a crawl. The ending however is epic and completely blew me away. The wierd Terminator boss was a little strange, but the set pieces leading up to that were amazing and really added some new gameplay twists rather than simply entering an area, killing folk, then moving on. The side quests throughout were also nice and varied.

But overall the story was really lacking. It also seemed really small in scale compared to the first. I remember spending over ten hours in the Citadel on the first game before I'd even got the Normandy. It reminded me of Final Fantasy VII where you spend hours in Midgar, this huge sprawling city only for the game to competely open up after that. Mass Effect 2 however gave you the reigns pretty much straight away and even when you got to supposedly huge destination such as the Citadel, Ilium and Omega you were restricted to compartively small areas. It just seemed very small in comparison. I spoke to every person, scanned every planet, completed every side quest, detected every anomaly, recruited every character and made them all loyal (except Zaeed though I did do his side quest. I just let the man he was chasing escape!) and I clocked the game in just over 30 hours.

So while technically BioWare have improved almost every aspect of the game, I still felt dissapointed after finishing it. Having said that, I'm going go through it again and be a bad guy and I'm also looking forward to Mass Effect 3.

Oh yeah, how do you make everyone survive the suicide mission? I made Talia crawl through that tube thing but she got shot in the head closing a door. The I made Zaeed escort the Doctor back to the ship but he didn't make it! Are there certain correct choices and/or requirements you have to fullfil when choosing who goes where? I boned Miranda too if that makes a difference?

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Post #: 165
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 9/2/2010 12:56:51 AM   
kata


Posts: 3206
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Motorville
Just finished this, took me about 40 hours and loved every minute of it.

***SPOILERS***

I agree with a few points DC made but i disagree about the crew not being as good this time. There wasn't a single crew member i wasn't interested in, all of their recruiting and loyalty missions were engrossing. Thane's and Tali's were particular stand outs for me. With Jacob's father mission getting an honourable mention.

Was a little disappointed that after making the effort to bone Tali that we didnt get to see what was under her mask.

And what was that space hamster about? Little twat would hardly come out of his hamster house. Even tried knocking on the tank then running in the bathroom...

I played through making the choices i'd make if i were in that situation and came out with both renegade and paragon half filled. Be interesting to see what sort of ramifications those choices have in 3.

The shooting mechanics were superb i thought. I was a Sentinel (love the tech armor) with pistols/heavy weapons and chose assault rifles as the extra. The hand cannon pistol just felt meaty when you fired it and once fully upgraded was deadly. And that nuke launcher was just crazy, first time i fired it i killed my team mates used it a few times to 1 shot bosses.

Overall it was well written, well acted and i think i preferred it to the first, but only marginally. The rest of the releases this year will have to be spectacular to top it.

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Post #: 166
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 12:58:48 PM   
sroey


Posts: 1483
Joined: 30/9/2005
I finished ME2 after roughly 45 hours. I do love this game world and the story that is being built within it. I made all of the decisions much how I think I would but as soon as the paragon or renegade icons flashed during cutscenes I couldnt resist. Especially the one when talking to the reporter on the citadel! Brilliant game but I do feel that some of the points raised above are valid:

SPOILERS!!!

The citadel:

The first game this was a massive complex hub. In ME2 it was just a shadow of what it was - just a few shops to wander around in. Like HIM stated earlier the Citadel was a marvelous opening area to explore and spend countless hours wandering and exploring. It was daunting at first but the Citadel itself is a massive structure and the first game really did a great job of showing that.

Location Size:

Some of the locations in ME2 were huge on paper but actual wandering around space was tiny. The Krogan Homeworld was equally under developed and felt empty. If you dont bother with loyalty missions you will miss a large amount of this game. Theses missions will expand the initially small locations and add depth to them.

Elevators:

I actually liked the elevators from the first game as I felt it helped build immersion. Sure they were sometimes a bit annoying but they were a damn sight better than loading screens and for me small things like that built immersion. Much like the end mission screens (which I hated) the loading screens took you out of the game slightly. Eg - Moving around Illium - when you have to hail a cab etc -you are treated to a loading screen showing a kind of animation of your vehicle moving from one location to another. Its not the same in my eyes as its just a loading screen.

Customisation:

I hated the lack of customisation options. The amount of weaponry and armor available in the first game was excellent - it could have been trimmed down somewhat but it was incredibly deep and I missed it during this game. Kind of got used to not being able to change armor and weapons on the fly but still would like that back. I missed the RPG elements of the first game this felt like more of a shooter with RPGlite elements added on.

Despite all this the game was still brilliant - these are just minor concerns I have with the game that I think may well be addressed in ME3 - I think they have stripped out some of the content to see what works and I do think that ME3 will offer a greater balance.

I do think the story was excellent - but the first game has the edge on this. The whole reaper/sovereign reveal was excellent. This story has the prothean/collector reveal and the final shot of the end cutscene showing the huge Reaper army just watching. But the emphasis on this game was the characters and the world they are in while each loyalty mission sometimes offers background info on the reapers and the threat etc...I dont think the scale of what the Collectors were doing is displayed that well.

Still it was interesting to see the human-reaper but Im not sure how it would be used (e.g. a giant sentinal like being wandering the cities?)

Again  I loved the game and especially the first one I just couldnt always look past the parts that were stripped down. I really cant wait to see how they will top the first two games. Roll on ME3!

As for the suicide mission - I had all squad members loyal - all upgrades for the ship (except the med bay). I had also just had my way with Miranda

I chose Thali to go in the vents and Garrus to lead the 2nd team.

I chose Samara for the shield cover and kept the missus (Miranda) and Legion with me for the assault. Jacob escorted the survivors back - except for poor old kelly (who I also had my way with).

I stuck with Miranda and Legion for the final fight and blew up the Collector base. I also told The Illusive man to go screw himself! He was now my bitch!

Everyone survived!


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Post #: 167
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 3:37:13 PM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.
Just finished my 2nd playthrough and managed to get everyone to survive yay.

I thought I'd miss the Vanguard's shockwave to begin with but once you've upgraded the Sentinel's throw and warp (and tech armour for defence) to the max you're pretty much unstoppable. I managed to get through the Collector's base without using a single bullet until the appearance of 2 Scion's just before the last boss. Throw cools down in 3 seconds so you can just use it again and again. It's pretty mental for crowd control. I don't think a Husk got within touching distance of me or my crew.

Gonna wait a while for some extra DLC to come out before I go for my Insanity run. There should be some new free stuff out in the next few weeks according to IGN. Hopefully it'll be better than the first game's Bring Down The Sky and the other one that got released which I downloaded and haven't touched yet.

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Post #: 168
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 6:07:40 PM   
Captain Black


Posts: 6785
Joined: 30/9/2005
****STILL CONTINUING WITH THE SPOILERS*****


quote:

HIM

I made Talia crawl through that tube thing but she got shot in the head closing a door. The I made Zaeed escort the Doctor back to the ship but he didn't make it! Are there certain correct choices and/or requirements you have to fullfil when choosing who goes where?



You need all of the loyalty missions complete, and you need to choose characters who are 'appropriate' for the tasks; e.g. your second team leader needs to be someone with leadership qualities like Garrus or Miranda rather than Grunt. I lost the Doctor in the pipes (completed his loyalty mission so he must just be inappropriate) and Legion after choosing Jack (without the loyalty mission) for the biotic barrier.


quote:

Jacob escorted the survivors back - except for poor old kelly (who I also had my way with).


You get the option of an extra scene with Kelly if you keep her alive...



*********END*************


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[color=#F1F1F1]text[/color]

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Post #: 169
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 6:18:39 PM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain Black

****STILL CONTINUING WITH THE SPOILERS*****

quote:

Jacob escorted the survivors back - except for poor old kelly (who I also had my way with).


You get the option of an extra scene with Kelly if you keep her alive...



How do you do that? I take it you've got to rush off after the Collectors without doing Legion's loyalty mission. The attack on the Normandy has taken place as I'm going to sort out the Heretics on both my playthroughs.

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Your knowledge of scientific biological transmogrification is only outmatched by your zest for kung-fu treachery!

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Post #: 170
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 6:32:33 PM   
Captain Black


Posts: 6785
Joined: 30/9/2005
****AND STILL WITH  THE SPOILERS*****

I think you save more of the crew the quicker you go to the Omega 4 relay after your ship's attacked. I think I lost the crew, did Legion's loyalty (this is when the install the IFF if memory serves) then went straight for the relay.


****************


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Post #: 171
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 7:12:14 PM   
i stole your car


Posts: 142
Joined: 7/3/2009
quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain Black

****AND STILL WITH  THE SPOILERS*****

I think you save more of the crew the quicker you go to the Omega 4 relay after your ship's attacked. I think I lost the crew, did Legion's loyalty (this is when the install the IFF if memory serves) then went straight for the relay.


****************



That's not Legion's loyalty quest is it? That's his recruitment quest.

Also I managed to save everyone and I took a looooong time making sure I had done everything possible in the game before hitting the Omega 4.

(in reply to Captain Black)
Post #: 172
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 7:53:08 PM   
rich


Posts: 5145
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Neo Kobe
I did all the loyalty quests but still screwed up with the upgrades and character choices. Seemed to have time before they install the IFF to do Legions heretic mission - think you have to do it quick or you just get that scene where they use the shuttle and what follows.

SPOILER

the crew, Garrus and Jack all got killed

END


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Post #: 173
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 10/2/2010 8:16:25 PM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.
On my 2nd playthrough I had all the ship upgrades (it helped that I had 55000 of all elements as a completion bonus at the start) and the loyalty of all my crew members. I took Mordin and Grunt (team incendiary rounds FTW) with me, had Garrus lead the 2nd fire team and then the distraction team. Legion again went in the pipes, Samara did the biotic barrier and Zaeed escorted the survivors. There was a point where I thought Garrus had bought the farm but luckily everyone survived.

Loyalty is key I think. You still have to choose the right person for the job but they're much more likely to survive if you've gained their loyalty. On my first playthrough I managed to get everyone but Zaeed through. I think that was a combination of him not being loyal and being probably the wrong choice for the job.

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Post #: 174
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 11/2/2010 9:49:15 AM   
i stole your car


Posts: 142
Joined: 7/3/2009
Is anyone working through this on insanity for that last achievement?

I feel like wrenching myself in the teeth. It's a struggle to make every inch of ground. Horizon was by far the worst part so far, but I seem to be hitting a roadblock at every turn. I would like to find the quickest possible route through the game, do I have to recruit everybody? Are there certain people that can be left behind? I've done up to Horizon so far, got past the Praetorian and am now going through the Thane recruitment mission, but I have to do it in chunks otherwise I'd probably shoot myself in the head.

(in reply to Harry Tuttle)
Post #: 175
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 11/2/2010 10:42:25 AM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.

quote:

ORIGINAL: i stole your car

Is anyone working through this on insanity for that last achievement?

I feel like wrenching myself in the teeth. It's a struggle to make every inch of ground. Horizon was by far the worst part so far, but I seem to be hitting a roadblock at every turn. I would like to find the quickest possible route through the game, do I have to recruit everybody? Are there certain people that can be left behind? I've done up to Horizon so far, got past the Praetorian and am now going through the Thane recruitment mission, but I have to do it in chunks otherwise I'd probably shoot myself in the head.



It's that bit that I'm dreading the most when I finally get round to doing the Insanity run, I found that bit tough going on Normal. I'm going to have to New Game+ it methinks. No way will I be starting a character from scratch.

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Your knowledge of scientific biological transmogrification is only outmatched by your zest for kung-fu treachery!

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Post #: 176
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 11/2/2010 11:17:07 AM   
i stole your car


Posts: 142
Joined: 7/3/2009

quote:

ORIGINAL: Harry Tuttle


quote:

ORIGINAL: i stole your car

Is anyone working through this on insanity for that last achievement?

I feel like wrenching myself in the teeth. It's a struggle to make every inch of ground. Horizon was by far the worst part so far, but I seem to be hitting a roadblock at every turn. I would like to find the quickest possible route through the game, do I have to recruit everybody? Are there certain people that can be left behind? I've done up to Horizon so far, got past the Praetorian and am now going through the Thane recruitment mission, but I have to do it in chunks otherwise I'd probably shoot myself in the head.



It's that bit that I'm dreading the most when I finally get round to doing the Insanity run, I found that bit tough going on Normal. I'm going to have to New Game+ it methinks. No way will I be starting a character from scratch.


This is going to sound strange but it's actually laughably easy compared to the part that comes right before it. I don't know if you remember it but that segment goes a little something like this:

Two Scions + An infinite amount of spawning Husks
Collector Wave 1 + Harbinger + Husks
Collector Wave 2 + Harbinger + Husks
Praetorian

Each of these waves gets progressively easier until the Praetorian seems like a joke in comparison. The hardest part is by far the Two Scions and the infinite husks. Scions are so ridiculously hard to kill and do so much damage against you it's stupid. You can't "hide" from them because their Shockwave will just breeze through scenery objects, rip off your shield/barrier and leave you with only a third of your health. You can hit them with Incinerate/Warp/Reave then direct all your team fire against them and barely dent their health. Your team WILL die because husks on insanity start with an extra layer of armor, negating all of your nice "crowd control" biotics and there's practically no point in killing them because they respawn infinitely. The technique I ended up using was just don't stop moving. Vanguard Charge the Scion, shotgun him in the face and then run like fun for cover making sure to never slow down to let the husks catch me. It took about 20 minutes to get the scions down and that was only the first wave of the entire encounter.

Any time you die... back to step 1.

(in reply to Harry Tuttle)
Post #: 177
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 11/2/2010 11:29:03 AM   
Harry Tuttle


Posts: 7999
Joined: 12/11/2005
From: Sometime in the future.

quote:

ORIGINAL: i stole your car


quote:

ORIGINAL: Harry Tuttle


quote:

ORIGINAL: i stole your car

Is anyone working through this on insanity for that last achievement?

I feel like wrenching myself in the teeth. It's a struggle to make every inch of ground. Horizon was by far the worst part so far, but I seem to be hitting a roadblock at every turn. I would like to find the quickest possible route through the game, do I have to recruit everybody? Are there certain people that can be left behind? I've done up to Horizon so far, got past the Praetorian and am now going through the Thane recruitment mission, but I have to do it in chunks otherwise I'd probably shoot myself in the head.



It's that bit that I'm dreading the most when I finally get round to doing the Insanity run, I found that bit tough going on Normal. I'm going to have to New Game+ it methinks. No way will I be starting a character from scratch.


This is going to sound strange but it's actually laughably easy compared to the part that comes right before it. I don't know if you remember it but that segment goes a little something like this:

Two Scions + An infinite amount of spawning Husks
Collector Wave 1 + Harbinger + Husks
Collector Wave 2 + Harbinger + Husks
Praetorian

Each of these waves gets progressively easier until the Praetorian seems like a joke in comparison. The hardest part is by far the Two Scions and the infinite husks. Scions are so ridiculously hard to kill and do so much damage against you it's stupid. You can't "hide" from them because their Shockwave will just breeze through scenery objects, rip off your shield/barrier and leave you with only a third of your health. You can hit them with Incinerate/Warp/Reave then direct all your team fire against them and barely dent their health. Your team WILL die because husks on insanity start with an extra layer of armor, negating all of your nice "crowd control" biotics and there's practically no point in killing them because they respawn infinitely. The technique I ended up using was just don't stop moving. Vanguard Charge the Scion, shotgun him in the face and then run like fun for cover making sure to never slow down to let the husks catch me. It took about 20 minutes to get the scions down and that was only the first wave of the entire encounter.

Any time you die... back to step 1.



Yeah I remember the bit preceding it. The Scions are indeed a pain in the fucking arse. I always made sure I had Grunt and Mordin with me any time I knew I was facing them (for example when capturing the IFF and the last level) due to Mordin's Incineration and Grunt's team incendiary rounds being extremely effective. The worst thing about them though is that they're always accompanied by a load of Husks and a few Abominations which makes concentrating your fire on them that much harder.

Bit of a pisser to find that shockwave and throw won't work against Husks on Insanity though. They were life savers on both my previous runs.

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Post #: 178
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 12/2/2010 3:59:12 PM   
Peter Griffin


Posts: 2891
Joined: 30/9/2005
Hhhmm.
Loved the game but that last level and boss fight wasn't as good as the first.
Just insanity to run through now but i'm going to leave it for a bit so i don't get Mass Effect burnout.

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Post #: 179
RE: Mass Effect 2 aka the greatest RPG sequel ever - 14/2/2010 7:28:30 AM   
HIM


Posts: 9734
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Star Trekkin', across the universe
quote:

Tali
quote:

ORIGINAL: kata

Was a little disappointed that after making the effort to bone Tali that we didnt get to see what was under her mask.


Probably better that you didn't!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v433/johnny_nocturnal/Mass%20Effect/tali1.jpg

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Post #: 180
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