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Highly Anticipated Sequal to Mass Effect Will Not Disappoint


The moment you fire this game up you will be hooked.  The opening of this game is something you would expect to see out of a highly successful t.v. drama or even a Hollywood block buster.  The opening sequence sets the tone of the game nicely.  I have seen some games that have had tremendous opening sequences only to fall flat on thier faces once you actually get into the game play, but this one does not disappoint.  


So You've Played Mass Effect, Even Better


I really can't think of too many games that let you do this if any, but, Mass Effect 2 let's you take that character you've so lovengly raised in the first one, holding it's hand along the way and teaching it everything you know in hopes that it would one day have a better life and opportunities than yourself and import that into the sequal.  Yep, maintaining it's appearance, class, history, and tendancies.  Take this even further, make your character look like yourself of anyone else you choose with the character customisation features of Mass Effect 2. 


Let's Get On To Gameplay


A lot of you may be asking yourself, what's the major differences between Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2 gameplay wise and I don't blame you.  Actually, that's the first question I always have when considering a sequal, is, how have they improved the actual gameplay?  Well, there are several major differences, the top two being combat and role playing elements.  While the first one may have been a little more RPG in a way, this one makes up for it by refining the finer things in a game, like, uhh, action and shooting stuff.  No need to worry about managing inventory and mixing this weapon with that and this sheild with this trinket, etc.  Use the left bumper to pull up the weopons menu, pick what's best for you and your team (this pauses the game, which is nice because you won't be getting pwwned while selecting your weapons), and release; your team takes the necessary action and you're ready for combat!  Wait, situation has changed, use the D pad to issue on the fly commands to your AI teammates.  


Not to worry though, it's not all run and gun.  Mass Effect 2 still uses character developement and backstory to draw you into the game.  There is strategy and dialogue involved just like the first one, the combat is just more evolved and smooth, let's put it that way.  It's the best of both worlds.   In Mass Effect 2, one thing I noticed is that you can actually utilize the variety of weapons to great effect and it's fun to do so.  There are a lot of titles out there that have variety but for some reason a shotgun and a melay attack are all that's needed to effectively navigate the campaign.  Not so in Mass Effect 2, you'll want to make use of your armament buffet.  The combat in Mass Effect 2 can be intense, look to products like GhostGrip Sweat Controller to help eleviate any sweaty hands issues you may have during intense gameplay.  


Traveling Mini-Games


Instead of instantly transporting by pressing A you have to now navigate the Normandy around the galaxy map, watch your fuel, and scavange for resources.  Kind of tedious and time consuming, but, whatever, some people might like it, me, not so much.


With it's extraordinary replay value and vast landscape and excellent gameplay, Mass Effect 2 is a keeper not a renter and will definately have a spot in my collection.







Halo 3 and Command and Conquer


Dude, with the Halo 3 slash Command and Conquer concoction that's out, I'm lost with what the heck is going on with Halo 3.  I mean, here's the thing, the Halo franchise is HUGE, and rightfully so, but, I believe it's in danger of being diluted.  Although not yet, just sayin the red flags are on the horizon, so far so good.  For those of you that moved on to other shooters, you know that when you try to get back into Halo for a bit, you can't help but have the feeling that you're swimming in a fish bowl, seriously.  Anyway, I thought the whole Red Alert thing using Halocharacters was a cool idea, I've never played it, but a good idea non the less.  So what's up with Halo 3 Recon.


I'll try to sum it up real quickly.


It takes the gap between Halo 2 and Halo 3 and fills it in, but sense it's an independant effort from Bungie, new things can be expected.  I expect to see a more personal story tracked sequence.  Basically, they're gonna take the helmet off a few ODST's (Orbital Drop Shock Trooper), and show some of the supporting cast behind the effort.  Think of Halo 3 crossed with Mass Affect, minus the choose your own adventure BS, and the awesome Halo 3 mechanics and physics.  Mechanics being how the players interact with imput you provide with your controller, and physics being how they interact with the other items on the screen.  I don't know if this is industry techy lingo, but it makes sense to me, so I use it. Either way, wether you agree that Halo should be careful of dilutiion or if you think they should start crossing over and putting the Halo brand on everything (i.e. Halo Tetris, Lego Halo, etc...), that's up to you.  From what I've seen and read so far, I think Halo 3 Recon will be a solid release and will please the vast majority of it hungry fan base.  Some of which are so infused with Halo that they refuse to buy any other games for thier Xbox, nuff said about the power of Halo.  Oh, one more thing, for all you Halo peeps that are yearning for the highly coveted, near impossible to get Recon Armor, you're chance is upon you!  Work on your Vidmaster Challenge achievements to get a jump on your homies.

Till next time, stop wiping your hands off on your pants.

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The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in anyway.

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