Mass Effect 2 Review – and Miranda Sex Scene

Finished ME2, 32.1 hours later and I

I’ve never really been a fan of role playing games (RPG’s). My first experience was an old Final Fantasy back in the 1990’s and I just didn’t get it. It wasn’t until Fallout 3 that I fell in love with the genre albeit an RPG/Shooter hybrid. Wanting more of the same, one game kept popping up in my search, Mass Effect. Winning countless Game of the Year awards on Xbox 360, but not arriving on PC until way into 2008, I waited patiently. I even waited until it was available on Steam, as putting a DVD in a drive feels so 1990’s, besides, my gaming box doesn’t even have an optical drive.

I wish I didn’t wait. Mass Effect combines science fiction, first person shooter and RPG elements, all rolled into a cinematic epic movie like experience that you control, what more could you ask for? Playing it is like watching Battlestar Galactica, Aliens, Star Trek and every other Sci-Fi made, all rolled into one where YOU control the plot and the action. So when Mass Effect 2 came up for pre-order on Steam I was eager to continue the saga. And what a saga.

Mass Effect 2 continues where you left off in the first Mass Effect, so if you’ve not played the game I would highly recommend you either watch IGN’s hilarious recap below, or play it, then watch the recap!

After importing my save game from Mass Effect (luckily I had this saved) I was thrown into an epic opening scene. Mass Effect 2 feels like a movie from the start, and when you do take control the action is much more fluid and fun than the first game. I only played Mass Effect through once, despite hearing about the multiple different stories that I did not see on my play through, I wanted to experience one story throughout so that the choices I did make in the heat of battle were meaningful and final. Saving and reloading to see every bit of the game was never an option for me, and I continued this rule throughout Mass Effect 2. This intensifies every choice in the game, leaving the relationships you make with each character at the risk of being broken at any time, giving meaning to every action as it would in real life.

From early on its clear to see the combat has been greatly improved. As a soldier class, you can just take control as though it was an ordinary FPS (apart from the slight third person view which takes a short while to get use to). I pretty much played through the first Mass Effect with just guns, and began episode 2 the same. But as I progressed I began to appreciate the biotic powers of my team mates. I also added my favorite biotic power ‘Slam‘ to my own character until I could walk around with Miranda lifting swarms of enemies out of my path in a synchronized way that made me feel like Yoda from Star Wars. Replaying this game as an Adept class with nothing but biotic powers is tempting, but I don’t want to ruin the story that I’ve already experienced, and of course the next episode Mass Effect 3.

What makes Mass Effect 2 such a good title apart from the insane combat, is the characters. Recruiting team members, creating new relationships and bumping into old friends all of which have distinct personalities, sub story lines and actual depth and meaning is the key to this titles success, and of course the females. Without sounding like a desperate male, my first chance to find Ashley (my love interest from the first game) was hot on my list of things to do. But this soon becomes of little importance, once you get to know Miranda.

Miranda, voiced and modeled by the equally hot real life Yvonne Strahovski is the star of Mass Effect 2. It felt like the majority of the game I spent with her at my side, fighting, talking, gaining her loyalty and of course flirting like mad to reach the inevitable sex scene below (spoiler alert). Apart from her obvious curves, Miranda has, well great curves. She also has a great history, it’s a typical Sci-Fi story which you will no doubt find out if you attempt to seduce her and take her on the mission in search of her sister. All the characters, not just the females have something to offer, although some I just had no interest in (like Jack) and others I couldn’t get enough of (like Samara). Spending time on the team members individual missions, uncovering their past, gaining their loyalty and perks and forming bonds in Mass Effect 2 is very rewarding.  These bonds you work so hard on then feel totally threatened in battle as you are making leadership choices and viewing events that risk the lives of all your team members. Never before in a game have I felt so much connection and worry for an NPC (mainly Miranda and the Asari chick), the risk of losing someone you’ve spent so much time and effort with really makes this game shine.

Of course my Mass Effect story is totally different to the next gamers, each choice and reaction in game can spawn a huge number of story lines. If you choose, your love interest can be any character. Take your pick from the selection of weird and wonderful aliens or humans, females or males, or just run around blowing things up and ignore the cheap chat up lines and sex scenes altogether. Either way I can guarantee some connections with at least a few characters, and some that you just will just ignore or enjoy sending to their deaths. However you choose to play Mass Effect 2, you are going to have a colossal adventure in space, and at the end you will be left gagging for the next episode. For once you will be thankful for trilogies.

9.5/10 An epic cinematic masterpiece.

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