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  1. #81
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinderlin View Post
    I'm aware that it's easier for Skyrim to have those things since it's not a story driven game but I think you can still reproach BioWare with overlooking actual player freedom while obsessing about "narrative choice". (I'm quite sure that's not a thing, hence the quotation marks)
    At the risk of derailing the thread a bit, narrative focus is a facet of narrowness. You can make everything a mile wide and an inch deep or an inch wide and a mile deep.
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  2. #82
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    Crap: One last, quick thought. If I buy ME1/2 on Steam...any issues with important the saves to ME3 on Origin? Considering just buying them all through Origin for the sake of simplicity, really.

  3. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackcompany View Post
    Crap: One last, quick thought. If I buy ME1/2 on Steam...any issues with important the saves to ME3 on Origin? Considering just buying them all through Origin for the sake of simplicity, really.
    I imported my Steam ME2 save into ME3 just fine, I did buy the retail version of ME3 but as you need Origin to run it I doubt it's any different with a digital version.

  4. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by random_guy View Post
    I imported my Steam ME2 save into ME3 just fine, I did buy the retail version of ME3 but as you need Origin to run it I doubt it's any different with a digital version.
    Thanks for the reply. Last concern addressed, I do believe. Found a lot of help and good advice here. Some interesting discussion as well. Very much appreciate everything. If anyone else has any valuable insight into playing ME for the first time, now the whole thing is out, I would love to hear.

    Thanks again.

  5. #85
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    Don't read walkthroughs and don't fret too much about making everything perfect. The series deals with the occasional fuck up pretty nicely.
    Irrelevant on further examination of the rest of the thread.

  6. #86
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Smashbox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackcompany View Post
    If anyone else has any valuable insight into playing ME for the first time, now the whole thing is out, I would love to hear.

    Thanks again.
    Go ... with your heart.

  7. #87
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NathanH View Post
    Don't read walkthroughs and don't fret too much about making everything perfect. The series deals with the occasional fuck up pretty nicely.
    It also does a lot of switch-hitting to punish Space Jesus roles. :P
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  8. #88
    Activated Node Sinderlin's Avatar
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    On the topic of DLC choices:

    While I can see why westyfield would call "Overlord" skippable I actually think it's the best DLC for ME2 when treated as a story of it's own. You won't miss anything really important to the trilogies' over arching storyline though. Lair of the Shadow Broker and Arrival on the other hand fill out the gap between ME2 and ME3 and LotSB has a lot of nice content but Arrival sadly is an absolutely forgettable experience and I'd highly recommend reading up the events on a wiki if you're fine with that. Maybe get Overlord instead. ;)

  9. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinderlin View Post
    What I'm trying to say is it's been over four years now since the release of Bioshock and we are still bossed around by plot-armoured talking heads in most RPG's. Choose your own adventure style games that give you the option to chase the villain or rescue the innocent hostages when you are a highly proficient sniper/archer that could've easily taken out the talkative bastard while he was standing on that elevated position and explaining his plan to you.

    I'm aware that it's easier for Skyrim to have those things since it's not a story driven game but I think you can still reproach BioWare with overlooking actual player freedom while obsessing about "narrative choice". (I'm quite sure that's not a thing, hence the quotation marks)
    If you're not into narrative choice and the necessary restrictions that entails why would you buy a game like Mass Effect in the first place? Sure it's possible to meander around Skyrim and completely ignore the story lines and the quests entirely and kill and loot everything and indulge in 'emergent game play', but it's kind of akin to taking a family car off road. Sure it will do it, but it's not really getting the most out of the experience.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    At the risk of derailing the thread a bit, narrative focus is a facet of narrowness. You can make everything a mile wide and an inch deep or an inch wide and a mile deep.
    Indeed. If the argument is for pure freedom then to paraphrase Sanguine from a conversation a minute a go 'why can't I talk to the monsters?' The ability to kill everything is just one face of freedom within games.

  10. #90
    Network Hub PeteC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinderlin View Post
    On the topic of DLC choices:

    While I can see why westyfield would call "Overlord" skippable I actually think it's the best DLC for ME2 when treated as a story of it's own. You won't miss anything really important to the trilogies' over arching storyline though. Lair of the Shadow Broker and Arrival on the other hand fill out the gap between ME2 and ME3 and LotSB has a lot of nice content but Arrival sadly is an absolutely forgettable experience and I'd highly recommend reading up the events on a wiki if you're fine with that. Maybe get Overlord instead. ;)
    Yeah, while I personally thought LotSB was the best DLC and probably the best mission in the game I also thought Overlord was great. Two really well done pieces of DLC. Firewalker and Arrival on the other hand, not so much.

  11. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    It also does a lot of switch-hitting to punish Space Jesus roles. :P
    Glad to hear this, actually. When in doubt I always think of my character, and the way events might effect that character (or me) emotionally. I always go with what "feels right" at the time. I never stop to consider "what will get me the best/most peaceful world/galaxy/game setting." Doing the latter wrecks immersion and often leads me to feel disconnected from my character in unpleasant ways.

    In other words, I go for role playing every time.


    As for the other topic, of freedom and choice in games...I agree with the idea that the 'ability to kill everything is just one kind of freedom.' Why can I not reason with bandits? Persuade them to go away? How about bandits and forsworn becoming intimidated once they know I lead the Companions or the Mages Guild? Why is it I can defeat some unholy Avatar of Badassery and everyone knows it...yet every bandit is still willing to take me on?

    Aren't peaceful or law-abiding approaches also part of player freedom? I think this is something more games should offer.

    Personally though, having played Witcher 2, Bastion, Skyrim and Hunted: The Demon's Forge in the last 6 months, I think I will take a dev who errors on the side of restriction for the sake of narrative, over a big, empty sandbox full of equally empty fetch quests. If I want unscripted adventures in the outdoors, I will go hiking, geocaching, kayaking, etc. I don't need a video game for unscripted adventure, so I tend to focus on narrative over freedom when the choice presents itself.

    But hey, to each their own. And I do occasionally enjoy big open worlds that just let me wander for a time. Especially nice to find such games in the winter season, while stuck inside watching the snow.

  12. #92
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    Play the first one on Easy and just plough through the main story.

  13. #93
    Lesser Hivemind Node westyfield's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinderlin View Post
    On the topic of DLC choices:

    While I can see why westyfield would call "Overlord" skippable I actually think it's the best DLC for ME2 when treated as a story of it's own. You won't miss anything really important to the trilogies' over arching storyline though. Lair of the Shadow Broker and Arrival on the other hand fill out the gap between ME2 and ME3 and LotSB has a lot of nice content but Arrival sadly is an absolutely forgettable experience and I'd highly recommend reading up the events on a wiki if you're fine with that. Maybe get Overlord instead. ;)
    Quote Originally Posted by PeteC View Post
    Yeah, while I personally thought LotSB was the best DLC and probably the best mission in the game I also thought Overlord was great. Two really well done pieces of DLC. Firewalker and Arrival on the other hand, not so much.
    Oh, I hope I didn't give the wrong impression about Overlord. I think it's great - they all are, IMHO, with Arrival being the worst of a good bunch, and Lair of the Shadow Broker the best. I meant it was skippable in the case where one could only purchase, say, two of the DLC packs. I think it's better to go for the main story ones (LotSB and Arrival) than the ones which have little bearing on the rest of the games, but obviously your mileage may vary.

    In short: if you can, get them all.

  14. #94
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeteC View Post
    Yeah, while I personally thought LotSB was the best DLC and probably the best mission in the game I also thought Overlord was great. Two really well done pieces of DLC. Firewalker and Arrival on the other hand, not so much.
    I agree with this. Overlord was incredibly well delivered and ties in with ME3 quite well, it's a good example of DLC done right. I was really surprised with Overlord. LotSB is also exceptionally good and it'd go so far as to call it 'essential' in that it continues the story of a major character from ME1, particularly given that they return in ME3.

    Arrival was useful only to fill in the storyline but was otherwise boring and forgettable.

  15. #95
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    <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<WARNING: ME1 Spoilers ahead>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


    Began my first play through of ME1 last night. Rolled a FemShep Engineer. Voice acting is much stronger than with HimShep. Highly recommend the female character.

    Had to work this morning, so, only went as far as the Prothean Beacon mission. Seen the innards of the Normandy and the first planet. The video display is very grainy for reason, and the textures, even on Ultra High do show their age. And you know what?

    I don't care about either of those things. Not one whit. Because the game has me hooked. The writing is top notch; the combat is tight and well designed. Perhaps not perfect, but solid. Enemies use cover; they take fire fights seriously, they move around and they make you come to them. Far from the disappointment I feared from a game as old of the first ME, I am thoroughly hooked.

    What I have learned so far:

    -Use Overload. A lot. Enemies get a whole lot easier to defeat when you blow their shields.
    -While party AI is good, make sure your party members keep moving. Placing them behind cover also helps
    -Stick to weapons you can train on (only pistols, for Engi) unless its an explosive weapon
    -Even Shooter/RPG hybrids should have a grenade hotkey like ME does

    Having a blast with it. The story has me hooked, as does character dialogue. Even if combat was intolerable - and its not - I would drop the setting to Easy and play for the dialogue and the story. Its that intriguing.

    So, thanks to everyone for your input and advice. Very glad I got started on ME. Should not have waited so long.

  16. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackcompany View Post
    The video display is very grainy for reason
    That would be because of the stupid film grain effect, I'd definitely recommend disabling that.

  17. #97
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    I found the film grain really bad and bothersome in ME1 and turned it off, but thought it was quite nice in ME2.
    Irrelevant on further examination of the rest of the thread.

  18. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by random_guy View Post
    That would be because of the stupid film grain effect, I'd definitely recommend disabling that.
    You can turn it off? You folks are a pair of godsends. I scoured the settings looking for that and never noticed. Got the widescreen, key mappings, texture quality, etc. Never even thought you could turn off the film grain. Yep, that is getting disabled the moment I walk in the door today (working now, more's the pity, or I would likely be sleeping from having played ME1 most of the night.)

    Thanks for letting me know about that, the film grain is horrendous. Though to be honest the rest of the game is fantastic.

  19. #99
    Activated Node Sinderlin's Avatar
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    Playing an engineer in ME1 is actually way more challening (and less fun) than in later instalments of the series. You're considerably less effective in combat than other classes and should compensate that by spending your skill points accordingly.

    I recommend focusing on Pistols for reliable damage output against all kinds of targets and basic armor + electronics for increased survivability and overload. Add some ranks in Hacking and Damping for lock down capability and reduced cooldown/increased aoe on your offensive abilities. You should use AI hacking like a decoy and temporary distraction so don't bother levelling it any further as soon as your cooldowns are short enough for dealing with multiple shielded enemies.

    Open up fights with overload or dampen, according to presence of shielded enemies or biotics/enemy techs, then focus your squadmates' fire on those weakened targets while taking pot shots from cover with your heavy pistol. Use AI hacking on enemies behind the frontline but close enough so that the real threats turn around to blast them up. That can give you valuable time to regenerate shields, relod, change position or take some shots on one of those bigger robots.

  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinderlin View Post
    Playing an engineer in ME1 is actually way more challening (and less fun) than in later instalments of the series. You're considerably less effective in combat than other classes and should compensate that by spending your skill points accordingly.

    I recommend focusing on Pistols for reliable damage output against all kinds of targets and basic armor + electronics for increased survivability and overload. Add some ranks in Hacking and Damping for lock down capability and reduced cooldown/increased aoe on your offensive abilities. You should use AI hacking like a decoy and temporary distraction so don't bother levelling it any further as soon as your cooldowns are short enough for dealing with multiple shielded enemies.

    Open up fights with overload or dampen, according to presence of shielded enemies or biotics/enemy techs, then focus your squadmates' fire on those weakened targets while taking pot shots from cover with your heavy pistol. Use AI hacking on enemies behind the frontline but close enough so that the real threats turn around to blast them up. That can give you valuable time to regenerate shields, relod, change position or take some shots on one of those bigger robots.
    I played the ME2 demo as an Engineer. I did notice the Engi in ME1 was far less effective and less varied than in ME2. But since I plan to play one in ME2, I thought I would go with it now for consistency. I do tend to launch Overload rather a lot. Even on the first mission I know I used it no less than 5 times and likely much more. Worked well against those first Geth. Like that it also has a visible effect when used.

    Still learning the Squad Management facet of the game. I enjoy it, but still learning it. Wish more games had this hybrid real time shooter/paused squad management going on. Nice touch.

    So far ME1 is everything I wanted it to be and more. And that is just the admittedly aging (but aging well) first game. As a sci-fi nut and RPG fan I do not know why I didn't play this game sooner.

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