Mass Effect: Andromeda, one of the games I was looking forward to the most this year. The hype was real and the gameplay video series looked promising. Being a long time in development it’s finally here! But is the reboot of the series worth the wait?
Well … going into the game I was rather scared. It seems opinions aren’t really positive about this game. For instance, you don’t really have to look very long to find some YouTube video’s making fun of how everything looks. If you missed the hype, crabwalk is your word.
By reading and watching all of this, my expectations took a steep fall. My first hour into the game confirmed almost everything. Stiff animations, sluggish controls and graphics that aren’t up to par. What happened? This was one of my favourite series!? But after forcing myself through the first hours, everything started to click …
“if you like to create your own ‘custom Ryder’, be prepared for some disappointment”
At the start of the game you choose between playing as Sara and Scott Ryder. Cool thing is that they are siblings, and independent of your choice both appear in the game. The character creation tool on the other hand is a bit of a letdown. If you like to create your own ‘custom Ryder’, be prepared for some disappointment. Personally, since I’ve always played Mass Effect as the default character, I don’t really see this is a negative.
The game starts with humanity leaving our own galaxy looking for a new home. A 600 year cryo sleep later they arrive in Andromeda, and shit hits the fan pretty quickly. Your colony ship the Hyperion gets hit by a strange phenomena, planets don’t fulfill promises and an evil race called the Kett gets thrown into the mix. Everything sounds a bit cliché, but it still is a good foundation to start the game. Rest assured you’ll encounter more than enough to chew on.
“while at times BioWare seems to go for lightheartedness, I would prefer something more dark from time to time”
For instance, the characters you meet and recruit on your journey seem interesting enough to entertain. One critic I have is that the dialog at times seems a bit forced to be funny. I would rather see something more serious. While at times BioWare seems to go for lightheartedness, I would prefer something more dark from time to time. Certainly cause of the adult romance options you’ll encounter during the rest of the game
Gameplay and performance feel a bit off in the beginning as well. Everything ranging from controls to camera movement seems unresponsive. The game even has some stuttering issues on the PS4. Admittedly I switched from PC to PS4 for this installment, so my judgement may seem harsh. Besides, after a while you’ll get used to all of it, and to be fair I must admit the combat itself feels pretty good. Things do start to feel like second nature after a while.
“when you take into account all the little flaws it seems this game was released a bit too soon”
When you take into account all the little flaws it seems this game was released a bit too soon. It all feels unpolished. If you’re a long fan of the series Andromeda just isn’t up to the standard you’re used to. During my playtime an important patch was released tackling the issues many players had with the facial animations, and I must say it does look way better now. This proves the developer takes complaints at heart, so things can only get better from here.
To conclude, Mass Effect Andromeda isn’t the best game release of this period. If you have to be selective with your buys I would rather go for Horizon Zero Dawn or Persona 5. On the other hand, if you’re a sci-fi nut looking for a decent RPG, Mass Effect Andromeda won’t disappoint. Just don’t expect it to be a masterpiece. Another option is you’ll let this one pass for now and purchase Andromeda in a couple of months, once all the wrinkles are ironed out. In that case don’t forget to put it on your wish list, cause it would still be a minor shame to miss out!