Zack Layton "The New Hire"
As introduced by my co-worker Darcy, I am adding my thoughts to our month of the worst games that we’ve ever played.
Right off the bat, the first game that comes to mind (as I’m sure it does for many other people) is Mass Effect: Andromeda. Not only was this game the final “spit in the face” to fans, but it was also the proving point that EA will fail if they try to make narrative based games.
As a long-time fan of the series, I was shocked at how “unfinished” the game felt and it was clear that there was no love or passion blended in the game. It pretty much felt EA seeping into another series, trying to suck out all the cash possible, before it’s imminent demise. I probably put about 15 hours into the game, before I decided to stop playing it and traded it in.
Essentially, it is an action RPG and Andromeda is the fourth in the series. The player controls a character who wakes up from the Andromeda Initiative, which is a 634-year journey through space to find and populate new worlds that can sustain life.
For a Sci-Fi nerd, this story sounds like it could be a great set up right? Well, EA fails with this beautifully because they were too lazy to put real time and effort into the narrative.
There are tons of plot holes throughout the story, but one that stands out for me the most, is in the first three games, we are introduced to this enemy that “no one can escape from” and that you can’t hide from them anywhere in space. Except, we are now playing as characters who escaped them and “secretly” journeyed through space, before they attacked Earth.
Another weak characteristic about this game is that even though we have just travelled 634 years across galaxy, there were only 1-2 new alien species. The rest were ones that we met back at our old galaxy.
It’s a shame because EA could have had a great excuse for a reboot with new characters and life, however they took the easy way out and just wanted to make another cash grab.
Very much like the older games, you choose either a male or a female at the start of the game and if you beat the game, you can unlock New Game+ (however, I don’t know why you would want to waste your time).
I do have to say, the action and combat has been updated, which made me enjoy the first half of my play through. Some moments really had me into the game, however once it slowed down, I started remembering the story.
They brought back the mechanic of driving around in a Warthog halo like car, which was a once hated mechanic from the old games, with the promise of making it better for this game. Spoiler: they did not improve it at all!
All in all, Mass Effect: Andromeda is a game with tons of empty promises. The developers promised the fans with a rich story, exciting gameplay, and new and improved mechanics. Unfortunately, what we got was an unfinished, rushed, poorly written with embarrassing dialogue game.
This was also the most bugged out game that I have ever played before, which is saying a lot because I love the Fallout and Oblivion series and they are usually plagued with bugs.
There was one moment on a planet where if I drove close to a house, it would cause the game to freeze and shut off my PS4. Turns out, this was a bug that thousands of people faced, and we now had to wait for EA to release a patch before we could complete the game. (This took weeks for them to release and if I remember correctly, this is the reason why I stopped playing).
There were also embarrassing moments where you could tell EA was trying to diversify their characters by including LGBTQ characters but failed because they had straight writers, thinking they know their struggle. It’s games like these that make LGBTQ people not feel well represented in the industry and that needs to change.
As you can tell, I’m not a fan of EA at all. They have destroyed another beloved series of mine, but I do think people should play this game. Only for the sole reason to prove that EA shouldn’t even try narrative based games and that we need to stop buying into their empty promises.
Thank you for reading this and I will keep my fingers and toes crossed, that somehow, somewhere a new Mass Effect game is made without the help of EA.