Mass Effect Andromeda was developed by BioWare in 2017, and published by EA for Consoles and PC.
600 years of cryo sleep has landed you in the Andromeda Galaxy. The events of the reapers in the Milky Way Galaxy have come and gone. Human civilization is in need of a new home to call their own. Along with the Krogans, Turians, Solarians, and Asari. If you’re a fan of the original trilogy, you’ll notice how a few races are missing from the line up. But that’s okay, because they’re all replaced with the Angara! Or is it okay?
The story of Andromeda feels very basic in comparison to the OG trilogy. You are the Pathfinder, who is tasked with exploring new worlds to find a viable world for your people. Though there are a couple obstacles in your way. Like the weird black matter in space that’s known as “The Scourge”, that destroys and kills anything that touches it. Or the mystery Kett. Who are they, and what do they want? The story beats kept me entertained, and I mean very entertained. Stay up until 2AM even though I need to be up early in the morning, entertained. But the in-between of it all? Well that’s a whole different story.
When the story would wind down a bit, when you’d have to talk to people for hours, or drive around a planet, were hit or miss. Yes I loved exploring the planets, but at the same time, they were so large and barren. Yes I understand WHY they were barren and boring, but still. Plus the side stories, whether they were side quests, or companion quests, never kept me very entertained either. At the end of the day, every single quest just felt like bloat, and made the game feel less streamlined. Though, you could romance almost anybody in your crew. So that was cool. So plenty of sex scenes if you’re a perv!
There was one point in the game, near the end, where I was preparing to start the final story beat. Except after I’d finished a companions quest, I’d be tasked with another. So I’d finish that one, then another one would appear. Repeat this about six times, and by the end of this string of quests, I was sitting there wishing it was over, while my eyes were glazing over, and my body was starting to shut down on me, from sheer boredom. Though that was my experience for most of the game…get to a new planet, drive around to activate towers by playing Sudoku, complete the billion side quests that were around so I could level up. It just felt monotonous. Especially when it comes to driving the Mako. There were three times where I had fun with it. When I first drove it, then on a planet that had no gravity, so I was driving off cliffs just to see how far I could jump. Then the last time was at the end of the game, in a kick ass driving sequence.
At least combat feels good and not completely unbalanced? Right!? Well sometimes. Sometimes you fight enemies who can’t hit you at all. Some who have pinpoint accuracy from 100 miles away with a machine gun, and then the goddamn remnant machines! There are enemies called “Watchers”, that are floating drones basically with a red eye, and they shoot a frickin laser! No matter where you go, that laser is locked to you. Forever. Draining your shield and health like a child drains a juice box of delicious apple juice! It’s unrelenting! Plus the cover system is the worst cover system, I think I’ve ever fucking dealt with in my life! Normally you press a button to go into cover. Makes sense right? Well in this you have to press against the wall. Or an object. This waist high wall? It could be cover. Or it could not be. Who knows!
But at the end of the day, I just stayed back with my Sniper Rifle anyways. Shot everything in the head. If they got close I either pulled out my minigun, or my shotgun. Not much variety in my gameplay, but it worked. But this setup also let me have fun, in the story beats. As I’ve said, they are the best part of the game. Though when I decided to play around with combat a bit more, I did enjoy it a touch more. You get to jump in this with your jetpack. In combat, if you jump and aim your gun, you get to hover in the sky. Eventually I learned that if enemies decide to crouch behind cover, I could hover in the sky for a brief second, and catch them in the face with a sniper bullet to end their suffering quicker.
On the note of jumping as well, the game features a multitude of platforming sections. Oh yes! Would you be surprised if I said the platforming is not great!? It feels heavy, it always felt like there was input delay. Some jumps I would go, “I do go this way right?”. It was a mess. Though so was the lip sync in the game. There were plenty of times when it was so off base, I was left just staring in amazement. Then for my most hated aspect of the game! Dialogue can just cut off if you go further down a hallway. What I mean by this is, say your companions are having a funny conversation, or something really important is being said in a story mission. You keep walking down that hallway you’re in, and suddenly, there goes the dialogue, for OTHER dialogue to be said instead. No game should do that! If you start dialogue, let it be played out fully! Give the players the time to be able to hear it all instead of standing around with their thumbs in their asses if they want to hear it all!
Last but not least, I have to talk quickly about the Multiplayer. Oh the multiplayer. It is essentially a horde mode. Survive 7 rounds of gruelling enemies, to get some EXP, some in game currency for loot boxes, then go again! Me and a friend played multiplayer on the easiest difficulty for an hour alone, and we COULD NOT win a single round. The enemies were ruthless, the objectives were too tight for two beginners, and we just were not having fun. Want a new weapon? Buy a loot box and hope you get one! It was the worst! Want to try a new character? You’re back down to level one! Deal with it!
- Great Story Beats
Fun No Gravity Planet
Romancing Your Whole Squad
- Bloated Side Quests
- Unbalanced MP
- Dialogue Cuts Off To Start New Dialogue
I have to be honest. I don’t know what kind of final score to give this game. So 5 is perfect because it’s in the middle of the board. The story kept me hooked when it was really going. But with the large planets and bloated side content, it’s hard to have fun. If you’re a multiplayer fan, you’ll have more frustration than fun.
I loved the dialogue between my companions when it wasn’t cut off, and I enjoyed deciding who I would romance, but most of their quests are boring as shit too. Though Peebee is the best. So if you do decide to pick this up, just go in with tempered expectations. It’s nowhere near as good as the OG trilogy, but at the same time, the story was fantastic, as I’ve said about five times now.
Game & Developer Information
Developer Website: BioWare
Developer Socials: Twitter
Publisher Website: EA Swiss Sarl
Publisher Socials: Twitter
PSN Store Links: £17.99/€19.99 Europe / $29.99 North America
Trophy Information: 56. 1 / 2 / 5 / 48