On N7 Day (Nov. 7th), Bioware announced that Mass Effect: Legendary — a remaster of the original trilogy with all DLC — is coming soon in Spring 2021. Which probably means a March release.
In this essay, I will explore my feelings about Mass Effect and present my reasons for why I will, ultimately, grab Legendary when it comes out.
The first Mass Effect game I played was Mass Effect 2. I remember seeing it on the EA store after I had just finished playing Dragon Age: Origins and didn’t know what to do with my life.
My first experience with this game was mostly of wonder. I had never before played a game that fleshed out the character and let me talk like humans speak to each other in the real world. Sheperd had a voice, and I was the voice director.
Dragon Age: Origins, the game I had completed just before grabbing Mass Effect 2, Didn’t give me a voice. Only a set of textual choices. Don’t get me wrong — textual decisions are significant. One of my favorite games in the world is Lifeline — a textual based mobile game where you talk to Taylor — an astronaut who needs your help.
It’s the wonder of elevating the storytelling into a similar experience to life that got me so hooked on this game.
All of the above was only in the first ten minutes of gameplay. Yes, I know I’m fanboying on Mass Effect right now. Nevertheless, it has been one of the more significant influencing video games I had played in my past.
When I got to the actual storyline, things changed dramatically for me. To say I was excited to meet the other races is the understatement of the year. I’m a software engineer by profession. I wasn’t one back then, though. But I always knew enough about coding and game design to break down the illusion with comments like, “wow, this girl voiced this alien character perfectly,” and stuff like that.
Mass Effect managed to lift me away and immerse me in the story. Something I am infinitely grateful for and will always hold in high regard.
At some point, I realized that Mass Effect 1 could significantly impact how its sequel plays out. I stopped playing the latter and grabbed the former before returning and playing with an imported character.
The experience was entirely different, and I’m not talking about the storyline. Instead of playing a whole new game that I knew nothing about, I was expecting to see old faces now. I had a history.
The same goes for playing Mass Effect 3 — it was a good game on its own. But, it also stood upon the foundation that the previous two games had built for it.
I know many people are still upset about the ending of Mass Effect 3. Now with legendary, we are going to experience that again. I don’t believe that a game as good as ME3 should be judged just by its ending. I didn’t always feel like this, but I learned that there’s no reason to anger as time passed. There are many games and many worlds to explore — if you cross off this world only because of that ending, then perhaps you should try something else.
One thing that always kept me intrigued was the relationships between the characters and Sheperd in the mass effect games. Discovering their lives to unlock their loyalty missions was so much fun! Mass Effect 3 also did that. Finding love amidst chaos and what the hell — let it be a blue woman with tentacles for hair or a woman concealed in a metal suit. We’re not space racists here.
And perhaps, this is one of the most critical lessons the Mass Effect series taught young minds — not to be racist. In a world of protests against police brutality and systemic racism, we need these kinds of creative forces to clear up the wrong misconceptions people may have about each other.
We are all equal — all humans. There’s no place for judgment based on the skin color or the shape of the nose.
For that reason alone, I would say — HELL YEAH! Grab Mass Effect Legendary if you never played the original trilogy. It will open your mind to so many different opinions and ways of looking at the human experience. And it’s also super fun! You shoot things, there are humorous conversations, there are potential relationships, and even a bromance!
But what if you already did play the original trilogy? Should you still buy it?
I would still say yes. If only to relive those unforgettable moments from the original games in modern graphics. Mass Effect 1 felt like an old game because that’s what it was. It was great for its time in 2007, but could you honestly play a game with old graphics after playing something like The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt?
Bioware is securing access to the Mass Effect Universe for years to come, a significant creative endeavor. There are so many stories and lore written in this “setting” of the future Milky Way. Mass Effect changed lives. If we still talk about it nine years after Mass Effect 3 came out — you can see the impact it made on the world.
And you know what? 2020 has been challenging. Many people died because of the virus, lost jobs, friends, and past misconceptions about the world have been unraveled. We need some sweet escapism, but we cannot escape our problems. Mass Effect could fill in both points. Be a force of good, but also an excellent venue to let off some steam.
In this essay, I hope you felt my love for the Mass Effect Series. If you never played the games and do like role-playing games combined with a 3rd-person shooter, grab it. There’s a great story woven in, and it’s so much fun to play as Sheperd and shoot stuff!
If you did play the games, I would still grab it. Reliving this story in 4k and updated graphics makes me want to replay mass effect 1 all over again and bring the save file all the way up to ME3.
What do you think about Mass Effect Legendary? Would you play it when it comes out?