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Here are my thoughts on recent games I have played through for those who may be interested.

Mass Effect

I always love a good game with a sci-fi story set in space, Xenosaga for example, so I was excited to get to play this one finally.  I have to say though I had a bit of trouble getting into this one at the start, there was just so much thrown at me and a ton of dialog that felt like was overkill for a universe I barely understood.  I suppose if you like games that try to create a universe rather than a story this would ideal but I prefer story first and then expanding the universe.  This worst part of it all being the first time in the Citadel were I spent hours in dialog and side missions (since I am a completionist I try to do it all) to the point I just gave up on trying to complete it all and skimmed through the rest just to get out of there.

I also do not like games that make you choose answers on how to respond to situations that effect what happens next, this is a personal opinion that made for this aspect of the game being not very enjoyable.  I mostly hate it just because I always end up choosing the “nice guy” answer and would rather my characters to have their own personalities.

However, despite those annoyances the game just kept getting better and better and the story kept getting more engaging.  The finale was just awesome and made me glad I didn’t give into early frustrations with the game.

I think what I liked most about this game though was just the game play.  I choose the sniper role and stuck with it through the whole game so I can’t say much for the other careers but I had a blast as a sniper.  I liked doing side missions more for just pure having fun playing rather than the story aspect of them.  This sort of rpg/fps combo was something I had not really experienced much before and was very fun.

I was disappointed however with the team controls as my teammate’s AI was incredible stupid and the controls for them were clunky.  I got use to it more later on but it never really felt very smooth.  Same for my abilities which I hardly used until late in the game.  I did feel like the game was a bit too easy despite this and whether it be just the sniper class I don’t know but I was able to charge into fights head first as a sniper and live with a good amount of success given how you would think a sniper should be.

I also feel like the PC version of this game was just not very finished.  One of the more annoying aspects was the lack of auto-save on side missions.  I had more than one time I would just randomly die near the end of a side mission to realize I forgot to save and would lose all my progress on that mission.  There were a few other bugs that cost me time in the game like getting stuck in an elevator.  Overall though Mass Effect was a very good game and I am looking forward to playing the next Mass Effect in the series when I can get around to it.

Dead Space 2

Dead Space 2 picks up pretty much where the first left off, which I won’t go into detail to avoid spoilers.  The game is basically the same but is improved in every way, which I like because you shouldn’t mess with a good thing.  The biggest change though is this time your character speaks, is given a face behind the helmet and interacts with other people throughout the game.  I really like this as it made the story more engaging and interesting to me.

The game play is basically the same as the first Dead Space so see my review for that.  They added a few new weapons into the game, only a couple I actually tried out and adjusted some others.  I would still say it’s best sticking with only two weapons like in the first game, one of which being the plasma cutter other being a high damage output weapon.

Since this is a horror game the whole point of the game is to scare you and whatnot and Dead Space 2 really improves on this aspect over the first game.  I felt in the original after a while you could figure out the pattern and avoid it all, however, in this game they figured out ways to force you into bad situations.  There were a lot of jump out of your seat moments and places where you just couldn’t back into a corner and wait for the enemy to come at you.  In particular though the lighting and sounds really set a good mood in this game, even better than the last one.

The monsters in this game were very nicely done and had a lot more variety in what they did than in the original Dead Space.  The, what I call, raptor types were among the worst(aka best) in the game as you could hear they were out there but you wouldn’t know when they would come charging at you or how many of them there were.  The child-shaped monsters that come charging at you in great numbers were extremely creepy as well.  Probably the only disappointing aspect was the boss fights which were not all that fun, some of which were painful or annoying and others just too easy.

If you played the first Dead Space and liked it there is no reason at all not to play this one as well, excellent game.

Modern Warfare 2

I wasn’t gong to write on this one as I don’t feel the single player mode was much of a game at all and it really was made for multiplayer anyways but I do have a few things to say about it.

I felt like this could have made for a really great single player game if they actually had put the effort into by adding more substance rather than about 7-8 hours of stuff that was more about looking cool and creating a shock factor.  They really threw the story all over the place trying to keep it flashy to the point I had no idea who any of these people were.  But still I felt like this could have made for a great game as the story did get interesting towards the end and they just needed to have spent more time on it.

The couple of things I did like were, one, the soundtrack.  There was some great music that just fit the game perfectly and just made me want to stop and listen to it.  Also, I am finding the challenges extremely fun but I’m currently still in the middle of completing them.  The challenges seem to work better for this type of game as it cuts out some of the weaker aspects of the single player mode and just gives you a fun missions to complete.

Since I got this for cheap I don’t regret it at all but I wouldn’t pay for the non-sale price of it unless I was really interested in the multiplayer and at this point it’s probably better just to buy Modern Warfare 3 for that.