developer: BioWare Corporation
publisher: Electronic Arts Inc.
Game mode: single / multiplayer
Multiplayer mode: Internet, players: 1-4
Mass Effect 3 for PC, X360 and etc. is the final installment of a science-fiction trilogy of the adventures of Commander Shepard. The game combines action and RPG elements, and takes into the distant future. The title was developed by BioWare, known for many great productions such as Baldur's Gate, Dragon Age: Origins, and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic.
The story begins on Earth, where Shepard, the protagonist of the two previous games is being tried for acts committed while trying to take Dr. Kenson back from batarians (it happened in Mass Effect 2: The Arrival). One of the hearings is interrupted by the invasion of the Reapers. In the prologue, we manage to escape onto Normandy and begin gathering allies for the great battle with the invaders, bearing in mind the fact that this time the stake is the survival of the entire human race. In parallel, we complete the Normandy crew. During the adventures, many characters accompany us, both those well-known from previous installments of the trilogy, such as Tali, Garrus, Liara, Kaidan, or Ashley, as well as completely new people, among whom we can find, inter alia, James Vega. Other famous characters also make appearance throughout the game. These include Wrex, Legion, Mordin, Admiral Anderson, and the Illusive Man. The last continues to lead the organization called Cerberus, and has a completely different plans for the Reapers.
The campaign can begin in two ways: by creating a completely new character or by loading a saved game from the two previous games. In the latter case, we can count on retaining the characteristics of our character, but also to transfer the information on all the decisions taken earlier. Number of changes in the game is even greater than in the previous part of the cycle and, as a result, our earlier choices may affect, inter alia, the relationship with some characters or even entire Alliance races. It is worth noting that the developers prepared several different endings. The final of the trilogy is largely dependent on whom we have on our team and what allies we managed to gather.
The game is a combination of exploration, problem solving, and fighting. A large part of the gameplay takes place on the Citadel where we visit, among others, the Presidium, the port reserved for refugees, or the local hospital. We also travel across the galaxy, so we can visit the homeworld of krogans and asari, as well as look into the academy in which persons endowed with biotic abilities are the students, or to a monastery inhabited by Ardat-Yakshi. Combat is very much like action games. The pace of the fighting is about 15% higher than in Mass Effect 2, and the whole undergone a number of improvements. Shepard can now more effectively hide and move between the covers, do somersaults to avoid enemy fire, and dish out strong melee attacks. Our successes are rewarded with experience points, which then we spend on character development. Despite the reduction in the number of RPG elements, the feeling of control over the direction in which Shepard develops is even stronger than in the previous games. We get more complex skill trees which provide some freedom in the choice of powers.
Weapons look very much like those from the second game of the cycle. They are divided into five groups, namely: assault rifles, sniper rifles, submachine guns, shotguns, and heavy pistols. In the third part of the saga, the possibility of modifying our arsenal is brought back. Each purchased or found weapons can be equipped with special enhancements that ensure, inter alia, increased ammo capacity, enhanced fire rate, or dealing more damage to armored targets. Other noteworthy things are the possibility of selecting of each piece of armor and the impact of the equipment weight on regeneration speed of the powers.
The biggest news in comparison to the previous part of the cycle is the introduction of an extensive multiplayer mode called Galaxy at War, offering cooperative combat for up to four players. Interestingly, in the multiplayer mode, we do not necessary have to control a human. We can also choose, inter alia, a representative of the krogan, turian, quarian or drell. The character development system, in which we acquire new levels of experience and improve equipment, adds depth to the multiplayer gameplay. The combat takes place on the maps known from the single player campaign. It has a fairly large variety of objectives to complete (killing all the enemies, getting rid of an elite opponent, downloading data from a terminal, protecting an important point on the map, etc.) and enemies to fight. Single and multiplayer modes in Mass Effect 3 for PC, X360 and etc. are also closely related since by completing missions in the company of other players, we are raising our galactic readiness level, thereby increasing our chances in the final battle with the Reapers.
PC / Windows
Recommended: Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz, 2 GB RAM (4 GB RAM - Vista/7), graphic card 512 MB (GeForce 9800 GT or better), 15 GB HDD, Windows XP/Vista/7, Internet connection
Microsoft Xbox 360