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Looking Back At Mass Effect Andromeda

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I’ve been thinking a lot about why I love Mass Effect Andromeda so much and how it improved on the trilogy. Am I saying this game is better than the trilogy? No, but it does do a lot right that people overlooked because of all the hate it received when it released.

Gameplay:

Mass Effect Andromeda blows every previous Mass Effect game away in this section. Not only can you finally jump, but the combat is the best it’s ever been in the series. You can dodge, hover in the air, ground pound, or just shoot something in the face. The combat here is incredibly versatile and you can easily see how this combat style led to Anthem. Anthem is a lot of things (most of them are not good), but the gameplay is one area of that game that excelled and it all started here in Andromeda. I wouldn’t mind the next Mass Effect game having a flight mechanic similar to Anthem. You know… just add interesting shit to do with it. Andromeda’s gameplay is great and every firefight can play a bit differently depending on your build. Speaking of builds…

Customization:

Mass Effect always had really neat, but flawed, customization. Andromeda nailed it. You’re not restricted to a single class for your entire playthrough anymore. You can freely switch from being an engineer to a powerful biotic with the press of a button. It’s amazing and there’s no level cap. You can literally be a jack of all trades and I love it. The armor sets are better designed, and the world is absolute eye candy.

The Nomad Is The Best Vehicle Yet:

Do you remember the Mako from the first Mass Effect game? How about that terrible vehicle in Mass Effect 2? Mass Effect has never had great vehicles… until now. The Nomad is easily the best vehicle in the series. It’s not hard to maneuver and it looks sexy too. You can even change the drive mode according to the terrain that you’re driving on. What’s not to like here?

It Has More In Common With The First Mass Effect Game Than 2 or 3 Did:

You’ll never convince me that Andromeda sucks or that it’s “not a true Mass Effect game” because even a casual glance at this game you could easily see all it has in common with the first Mass Effect game. In Mass Effect 1 you would travel to various different planets and you could explore them to your heart’s content. You could take your time not have to worry about rushing to the next story area because there was so much extra stuff for you to do. That was removed in the next two games. Guess what game it’s in? Andromeda.

Andromeda bought the exploration back and guess what? It’s better in this game than it was in the first one. The first game’s planet was hardly worth exploring and I understood why they removed them in the sequels. The only thing Mass Effect 1 did better than Andromeda is told a better story. The companions didn’t grow into their own until the second game. Andromeda didn’t need a sequel to grow the characters. They did plenty in this game and the funny thing is that all of the companions eventually become really interesting in this game. Yes, it’s a slow burn and the first area is like the Hinterlands in Dragon Age Inquisition, but once it gets going it really gets going. Andromeda has a lot more in common with the first Mass Effect game than many people think.

It’s Not Fair To Compare ONE Game To The Entire Trilogy:

I’ve seen this a lot. “X Mass Effect game did this better than Andromeda so it sucks!” Why are you comparing Andromeda to three games? Of course, Mass Effect 2 and 3 will be better because they’re already established games with established characters, lore, and we see most of the decisions that we made in previous games play out. How could we possibly expect Andromeda to compete with that? As much as I love Mass Effect 1 I can’t place it on a high horse because most of the decisions that we made in that game we didn’t know the outcome of until the next game or even the third one!

Every decision we made in Mass Effect 1 didn’t play out in that game. It took time and we patiently waited to see what our decision on the Rachni would be. Mass Effect has always done this. Our choices might not seem all that important at the time, but they eventually made sense. I’m not saying that Andromeda tells a better story than any of the trilogy, but it’s not as bad as people would have you believe either.

I think the fair comparison for Andromeda would be to compare it to the first Mass Effect game. Mass Effect introduced us to a new world with interesting alien species, politics, characters, and an incredible story. Andromeda aimed to do the same but lacked in the story part. It does everything else better than the first game though. I don’t hate Andromeda. To this day I still defend it and I’ll keep doing so because I think it’s a great game and worthy of the Mass Effect name. You wanted Mass Effect to return to its “roots”. Well… it literally did that in Mass Effect Andromeda.

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4 Comments

  • Reply
    "Lightning" Ellen
    Nov 10, 2019 5:56 pm

    I love this post! Well said on everything. I want to see Andromeda turned into a trilogy. There are so many potential stories to tell in this new galaxy.

    • Reply
      Omar
      Nov 10, 2019 10:36 pm

      I really hope EA gives Bioware another shot with this universe instead of scrapping the whole thing. The potential is there and I need answers! If they don’t want to do another trilogy at least give us a meaty expansion or at the very least a sequel. I’ll be happy either way.

  • Reply
    The Night Owl
    Nov 11, 2019 7:16 am

    I think your comment of people comparing one game to a trilogy is spot on. There were a lot of critics of how the first game played mechanically but Bioware nailed it with ME2. Andromeda isn’t going to get that same chance in the near future.

    • Reply
      Omar
      Nov 11, 2019 10:37 am

      That’s exactly my point! Andromeda will most likely never get a sequel like Mass Effect 1 did. People like to forget that the first Mass Effect game had issues too. Issues that were fixed in the sequel. Andromeda was a damn good game in my opinion and it’s a shame we’ll never get to finish Ryder’s story.

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