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Top 100 of 2012: 10 - Mass Effect 3


Did I ever mention how much I like Mass Effect? The first game created a universe that was so diverse and filled it with characters that were all expertly fleshed out and amazingly well realised. Mass Effect 2 bettered the previous instalment in every way, drawing out the player’s emotional engagement with key characters and further filling in details of the created universe. I liked Mass Effect 2 so much that I own it on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC.

So, Mass Effect 3 takes a well-deserved place high up on our most anticipated list. But what is it that we’re looking forward to so keenly?

Well, it’s due at the beginning of March with the customary couple of days disparity in US and EU/UK releases. The exemplary musical scoring will doubtless return as, despite Jack Wall’s departure from musical duties, Clint Mansell is on board. Mansell is the composer of   scores for all of Darren Aronofsky’s films, including the much loved Lux Æterna from Requiem for a Dream and, most recently, the Black Swan soundtrack.

The same classic action RPG gameplay will, of course, feature. We hope and expect that more games will be made within the Mass Effect universe but it has been said that this third instalment will mark the end of Commander Shepherd’s story.

For the first time in a Mass Effect game, four player cooperative play will feature. Players will be able to import their saves from Mass Effect 2 to continue their own story but of course you’ll be able to jump right in too, if you haven’t played the first two games. We would expect another “previously on Mass Effect…” video on the main menu to fill in for those of you who are late to the trilogy.

Kinect functionality has been mooted for the Xbox 360 version, with players able to speak their dialogue choices rather than selecting from the dialogue wheels as usual. We see no reason why this couldn’t be done with a PC or PS3 headset, as it was in Tom Clancy’s EndWar, but Kinect’s improved voice recognition might make it easier to implement.

Leaks from the prematurely launched beta, made available briefly thanks to a mistake at Microsoft, have revealed that Mass Effect 3 will have three distinct gameplay modes – Action mode where conversations are automatically finished, Story mode where you choose your own conversational responses but the combat difficulty is reduced and RPG mode which will most closely reflect the typical Mass Effect gameplay.

We’ve been promised RPG mechanics that slightly improve on the very pared down systems in Mass Effect 2. There will be more variety and intricacy in levelling up, with branching routes, and more customisation of weapons and armour. It’s unlikely that we’ll get planet scanning and mining back but Mako missions have been touted, as well as some unannounced integrated mini games.

BioWare are masters of this genre and Mass Effect has been a wonderful series so far so it was hardly surprising to see it feature so far up our list of most anticipated titles for 2012. March can’t come soon enough.

  1. StevenHibs
    Since: Oct 2009

    Looking forward to this one big time! Should be amazing, love how detailed the Mass Effect universe is, if its half the game Mass Effect 2 was, I will be over the moon

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 17:34.
  2. tonycawley
    Pint! Pint!
    Since: Feb 2009

    This is my personal number 1. I think mass effect 2 was probably the best game I’ve ever played, they’d have to do pretty well (badly) to mess this one up. Can’t see what 9 games can come above this.

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 17:41.
    • colmshan1990
      Since: Apr 2009

      Golden Abyss, Borderlands 2, Starhawk, The Last of Us, GTAV, The Last Guardian, Journey, LBPVita, umm… Rocksmith?

      Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 03:56.
      • aerobes
        Since: Aug 2009

        I don’t think Bioshock Infinite has been mentioned either.

        My interest for Mass Effect 3 has gone down a little but I wouldn’t buy any of those games ahead of it. I’d have guessed top 5 before today.

        Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 05:26.
      • DrNate86
        Since: Apr 2010

        Last Of Us was probably announced too late to join the list.

        Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 06:30.
      • colmshan1990
        Since: Apr 2009

        I knew that there was something obvious I was missing.
        Bioshock Infinite stands a good chance of number 1.

        Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 16:02.
      • maneorix
        Since: Oct 2008

        None of those mentioned would be anywhere near my anticipation levels of ME3 – besides maybe GTA5. But there isn’t much info on that to get excited about.

        BRING ON MARCH 2012 !!!

        Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 21:20.
  3. Deathbrin
    Since: Aug 2009

    Massive. Also Effective and Tertiary.

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 17:50.
  4. Arcadian1
    Since: Dec 2011

    Can not wait for this one, at first i was contemplating wether or to choose between this or FFXIII-2, but then i thought what the hey il Buy both :D. Why? because i would off completed FFXIII-2 by the time this awesome game is released :D :D

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 18:20.
  5. DrNate86
    Since: Apr 2010

    Action mode, for members of the public who want to skip all the talking and shoot things in the face. They should log the IP addresses of everyone who selects this and put them in special work camps. Or the military.

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 18:22.
    • aerobes
      Since: Aug 2009

      They could skip the shooty bits and just give me the talkie bits as far as I’m concerned.

      A few pieces of news have lowered my anticipation for this, to an extent where it isn’t a day one anymore but as the sequel to one of my favourite games ever, I’d be a giant fool to let a few pieces of disappointing news put me off. Hell, I was sold as soon as I found out Garrus was back and I can’t wait to see how the tale ends.

      Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 22:19.
      • MayContainEvil
        Since: Feb 2011

        If they haven’t improved the combat from ME2 then skipping the shooty bits would definitely be desirable. Although to be fair in that trailer from the VGA’s it did look much more spritely than before. So there’s hope :)

        Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 02:23.
  6. TSBonyman
    Since: Dec 2009

    I can’t wait to get back into the Mass Effect universe, one of my top five most anticipated games .. but now i’m starting to wonder are there some i’ve forgotten about … guess i’ll have to wait and see the rest of the top 100..

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 18:48.
  7. samiro05
    Since: May 2010

    I’ve no interest in this game at present but I may become interest should I ever pick up Mass Effect 2. I just don’t like the whole your decision changes sort of story. It’s cool but I want my dialogue to be simple and unpunished.

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 21:02.
    • GameAgent007
      Since: Dec 2011

      There is a consequence to every decision whether its labeled a punishment or not it has relevance. So if you pick up ME2 or not which you should,… today because if you don’t have time to play it everyday like me it may take you 3 months to finish it anyway. SO by that time 3 will be out. I highly recommend playing 2. Its currently at the top of my list of most enjoyable gaming expereinces

      Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 00:05.
  8. keaneplay
    Since: Oct 2010

    Can’t wait for this game… except I’ve yet to finish Mass Effect 2. I played a chunk of the game when it first came out for PS3 but then bought it for the Xbox (because of being able to use an old Mass Effect game save) but haven’t really made any progress since. I’ll get to it eventually though – it’s just too good a game to not finish.

    I doubt that I’ll be playing the co op side of Mass Effect 3, I much prefer to play a game like this solo.

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 21:15.
    • hunterstryfe
      Since: Feb 2009

      I would definitely want to play the co-op side with a cpl of my rl friends as it was what I was hoping for DA2 and now ultimately DA3, so this could be an insight into how Bioware develop the co-op aspect of DA3. Similar to how DA2 used the dialogue wheel from ME2.

      Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 23:36.
  9. hazelam
    Since: Feb 2009

    for me i want to see how the story ends.
    all the hours i spent on the first two games, all the decisions i made, all that time doing the tedious mining to upgrade the ship to keep my whole crew alive, i want to see how that all plays out.
    and i want to know what my releasing the Rachni queen will mean for the story, i’m guessing it was important as they had a bit about it in that interactive comic recap thing they had with the PS3 version of ME2

    shame about the online pass it’ll be saddled with though, and no doubt there’ll be more content than ever scooped out for their project ten dollars crap.
    so i’ll be getting it preowned, but then i’ll be getting the xbox version, like i did the original and its sequel, and i don’t pay for gold so multiplayer won’t be an issue anyway.

    i just hope this dumbing down Bioware have begun to do with their RPGs since they were bought by ea doesn’t continue in this game.

    i can’t wait to see how that anime turns out though.

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 21:50.
    • Adiemus
      Since: Jul 2009

      I’m with you on wanting to see how the story ends, but I think that’s the success of mass effect. It’s not ‘the’ story! its ‘our’ story.
      Allthough I do have an odd ‘hope’ for the ending of all of this!


      Obviously everyones ending will be slightly different, but personally I want to have done everything right. Every option leads to 100% success in the mission, Everyone survived, built up the best fleet etc etc! And at the apex of vitory…….loose! And watch Earth burn as Harbinger utters the words ‘The cycle cannot be broken’

      Also the new novel comes out in january so I’ll be definately be grabbing that in preperation for this and as for the music not being by Jack Wall I was at first concerned. But having seen the opening in the leaked beta (I cant resist!!) I have full confidence in clint mansell!

      There’s a scene that is so emotional it almost brought me to tears, but it would not have the same impact without the music score! (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lg1ElmVQ2pw – the inception noises fit the scene before u ask!)

      *End Spoilerish!*

      I could ramble on alot more….. I think I best stop lol

      Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 01:07.
  10. Armonster9000
    Since: Feb 2010

    For some reason I just couldn’t get into this series. No idea why, so I’ll beginning this one a miss.

    Comment posted on 27/12/2011 at 22:38.
    • Jakster123x
      Since: Aug 2011

      Same here. The demo for ME2 didn’t really grab me and that was mainly because I was just used to the silky smooth Uncharted 2 gameplay at the time and ME is more about the universe and characters which you can’t really get from a demo

      Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 01:04.
      • aerobes
        Since: Aug 2009

        The demo really isn’t indicative of the game, it’s pretty dreadful actually. Had I not played the game through previously on 360, I too, would’ve been put off by the demo.
        If you reach a point where there’s nothing to play, ME2 is absolutely worth the risk at the peanuts it’s being sold for.

        Comment posted on 28/12/2011 at 02:35.