Mass Effect Image
Metascore
91

Universal acclaim - based on 74 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 2015 Ratings

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  • Summary: Mass Effect is a science fiction action-RPG created by BioWare Corp., the commercially and critically acclaimed RPG developer of "Jade Empire," and "Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic." As the first human on the galactic stage, you must uncover the greatest threat to civilization. YourMass Effect is a science fiction action-RPG created by BioWare Corp., the commercially and critically acclaimed RPG developer of "Jade Empire," and "Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic." As the first human on the galactic stage, you must uncover the greatest threat to civilization. Your job is complicated by the very fact of your humanity, as no one trusts you and you need to find a way to convince everyone of the grave threat. You will travel across an expansive universe to piece the mystery together. As you discover and explore the uncharted edges of the galaxy, you come closer to an overwhelming truth - learning that the placid and serene universe you know is about to come to a violent end and that you may be the only person who can stop it! In addition to the main story arc of the game, players are be able to visit a large number of uncharted, unexplored planets which are side quests independent from the main story. At any time during the campaign, a player can choose to explore one of these planets and have an opportunity to discover new alien life, resources, ruined civilizations and powerful technologies. Talents and abilities are upgradeable and advanced talent options become available at higher levels. Weapons and vehicles are customizable to include various effects, abilities and upgrades using the "X-Mod" system. Each character class have unique talents and abilities which increase in power as the player progresses through the game. [Microsoft] Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 70 out of 74
  2. Negative: 0 out of 74
  1. Personally, it's the best game I've ever played, but even if you're not a hardcore sci-fi nerd like me, Mass Effect is a transcendent experience, the new standard-setter for what a game can be. You have to play it, and that's why we're kinda jealous of you. Even if you memorized all the previews and trailers, you're not ready for how awesome this game is. [Holiday 2007, p.58]
  2. X-ONE Magazine UK
    100
    A game of such rare emotion that we became attached to our characters to the point of missing them now it's all over. [Issue 27, p.76]
  3. Bioware has made another successful role-playing game that will please fans of the genre, science fiction advocates and any gamer who is looking for an engaging new experience.
  4. If you can’t wait to run to the next store and buy Mass Effect now, you should be aware of one thing: Its luxurious graphics need a luxurious PC.
  5. When we finished Mass Effect the first time, the very next thing we did was start it all over again. It's clear that this is the beginning of a fantastic franchise, and we're already salivating over the possibilities for "Mass Effect II."
  6. games(TM)
    90
    The time we spent with Mass Effect ranks as one of the most rewarding experiences we have had this year, and with the medium in such rude health that is quite a compliment. [Chrismas 2007, p.102]
  7. netjak
    54
    Mass Effect is a serviceable game and there is plenty of fun to be had, just be prepared to be frequently slapped in the face by how inconsistent everything is. Mass Effect is a resoundingly average game in every aspect, which is a complete letdown given BioWare’s history.

See all 74 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 23 out of 436
  1. Sep 1, 2010
    10
    A tear comes to my eye as I think about how best to express the pure joy this game brings. That sense of joy can come from climbing to theA tear comes to my eye as I think about how best to express the pure joy this game brings. That sense of joy can come from climbing to the top of a mountain on a world at furthest reaches of the galaxy and witnessing an alien sunrise, the stunning and original story line, and even looking down at your feet as you board a cargo ship and see the entire universe below you. All these things can only begin to explain the wonders of this game. Yeah, it's good. Expand
  2. GhostReviewer
    Jan 7, 2008
    10
    Mass Effect is without a doubt the true definition of evolution. Every inch of this game is moving gaming foward. The dialogue wheel is an Mass Effect is without a doubt the true definition of evolution. Every inch of this game is moving gaming foward. The dialogue wheel is an innovation that gives what is most likely the most immersive experience one can have with a videogame just short of virtual reality. You truly feel like you're making decisions that are effecting an entire galaxy, So much so that when you lose a team mate as a direct result of your actions you actually feel guilty. Ultimately it doesn't feel like you're controlling an avatar but rather you are Commander Shepard, commanding a crew to save and police the galaxy. The combat at first feells overwhelming and intimidating but once you take the time to learn its customization it starts to feel even better than Gears of War. As a shooter alone Mass Effect would have been awesome but the rpg elements are what make the deal. No matter what you do, leveling up your weapons and skills never becomes tedious. As the developers of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Jade Empire, Bioware had high expectations to meet with this one. The result is one of the best next gen games on the market that makes its predecessors feel like beta tests. Buy this game and forget about the outside world, you won't be going back to it anytime soon. Expand
  3. Mar 15, 2012
    10
    I have played many games from now to when I was five years old sneaking on the Nintendo at three in the morning. There was a time I wentI have played many games from now to when I was five years old sneaking on the Nintendo at three in the morning. There was a time I went through a stage of not really getting into stories from many games because many stories just seemed the same. The great thing about Mass Effect was it really grasped me, and I actually felt like I was in the story. It has a few minor things that keep it from perfection, but I strongly advise this game if you want to be brought into the world of science fiction from a video game. 10 Expand
  4. May 6, 2011
    9
    Mass effect is a fantastic game which really stretches what the rpg gender of games can do. The fact that it is set in space really made itMass effect is a fantastic game which really stretches what the rpg gender of games can do. The fact that it is set in space really made it for me since i am a bit of a sci fi freak. The gamplay and storyline are exceptionally good as as are the graphics and music. Another plus point is the upgrade and levelling up system. The only slight concerns i had about the game was the comat system could have been better. Also by the time you reach level 30 the levelling up becomes a bit pointless because all the important skills you need you already have. All in all a very good game and one i would highly recommend. Expand
  5. Nov 21, 2020
    9
    OVERALL - 91%

    Gameplay - 8/10 Graphics (for time) - 7/10 Story - 9/10 Game Length - 9/10 Characters - 8/10 Level/Area Design - 9/10
    OVERALL - 91%

    Gameplay - 8/10
    Graphics (for time) - 7/10
    Story - 9/10
    Game Length - 9/10
    Characters - 8/10
    Level/Area Design - 9/10
    Atmosphere - 9/10
    Sound Effects - 8/10
    Soundtrack - 7/10
    Replay Value - 7/10

    From a narrative and RPG point of view I think I prefer this to Mass Effect 2. The only downside to this game were the controls could have been better. This problem was rectified in the future games. It's a game that doesn't feel at all rushed, you feel you can explore it's universe at your own pace and is probably the best sci-fi computer game story of the decade.
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  6. Jul 11, 2013
    8
    The Mass Effect franchise is one of the most well-established RPG’s of this age, and this is a title it is certainly deserving of. It allThe Mass Effect franchise is one of the most well-established RPG’s of this age, and this is a title it is certainly deserving of. It all started with Mass Effect, which includes the most customization of any of the games in the series however it also includes the most flawed gameplay. The characters and the interesting sci-fi universe are the best part of this game. While the story itself is nothing new, the voice acting is superb and you’ll find that the best moments in this game are when you are chatting with a friend rather than duking it out on the battlefield. In fact, I’m going to go so far as to say the combat is boring and uninteresting.

    Therefore it’s such a shame that the battlefield is where you’ll spend a majority of the game It isn’t that the combat is broken- it is just boring. There is nothing new to it. But that isn’t even the worst part of the combat- the biggest flaw here is the autosave. You’ll often play for 30 minutes and then die and have to go all the way back to the beginning. You’ll have to learn to save on your own but even then if an enemy is remotely nearby you can’t save. This means you may have to go through the same 30 minutes to an hour of boring combat multiple times so you can progress the story. The only reason I trudged through the missions was so I could get back to the ship and advance my relationships with the other characters and learn about their histories and backstories.

    Not only does it have boring combat, but it has these broken and horrendous driving moments using a vehicle called the Mako which haunts me in my dreams to this day. So then, how could I give this game an 8.5 if I have all these complaints? Honestly, as I mentioned earlier, it is the characters that make this game. You play as Commander Shepard, a character whom you shape. Shepard can be a boy or girl, black or white, blonde or brown (or any other hair color) and on and on. There is no canon Shepard and you can play as him/her on a good (paragon), bad (renegade), or neutral path. Or you could just go crazy and pick whatever options you want. There is no right playthrough however I’d recommend deciding on whatever you would do/ whatever you think is right for your first playthrough.

    You can choose how to advance Shepard’s skills as well as his class, so its up to you whether you want him to be a charismatic leader or a violent over-powered man. This is something which was unfortunately dumbed down in the sequels and is another way that this game immerses you in. You can also upgrade your squad-mates skills but this is optional.

    Mass Effect is one of the best games I have ever played, which feels so unusual for me to say considering I found the actual gameplay itself boring. It looks great despite being a few years old and has brought the RPG genre the attention it deserves. Everyone will experience this game in a different way and walk out with a story to tell, and as long as you are patient enough to make it through the monotonous combat sequences then you are in for a real treat.

    Full score: 8.5/10
    You can also check out my second opinion at: http://binarymessiah.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/mass-effect-9-510/
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  7. FredB.
    Jun 28, 2008
    0
    This game has poor graphics for a XBOX360 game and poor taste. It appeals to little teenagers though.

See all 436 User Reviews