Seems a little disingenuous to be releasing new content for Mass Effect 1 when Mass Effect 2 is due sometime within the next six months (incidentally, we hear tell that unlike the infuriatingly tardy first game, the PC version will be released at the same time as the 360 version. Huzzahs!), but shouldn't grumble really. Now live on the EA digistoremacguffin is Pinnacle Station, which promises 2-3 hours of bonus space bimbling for $5/£4. Not extortionate by some DLC standards, though it does sound as the contents are all a bit shooty-bang-bang...
Here's what it is:
Test the limits of your combat prowess aboard a remote, top-secret Alliance space station. Do you have what it takes to hold the top spot amongst the best of the best? This module includes a new land-able space station, 13 exciting combat scenarios, and approximately 2-3 hours of game play.
Compete in a series of high-stakes battle simulations to earn amazing weapons and armor that can be used in the main game. Unlock new achievements, and even win ownership of a dedicated base of operations for Commander Shepard. Challenge modes include Survival, Time Attack, Hunt and Capture and even a scenario modeled after the First Contact War.
* Visit the military training center at Pinnacle Station and engage in a series of combat simulations.
* Players of any level can hone their Mass Effect combat skills, shooting your way to the top in 12 unique combat scenarios.
* Make a bet with the station Admiral in a final 13th mission. The stakes are high, Shepard risks his life and the life of his crew to prove that he is the best of the best.
* Farm your main game achievements in an easy to access combat simulator.
* Player can take their prizes and play with them in the main game. Making your next playthrough easier.
* Combat is more dynamic and fast paced.
* Combat simulator feels like a holo-deck of sorts, environments and enemies look simulated.
* Encounter Vadinos (Turian), and win his weapon.
Hmm. The gunplay wasn't exactly Mass Effect's greatest strength, so I'm not entirely sure as to the wisdom of this. Hopefully it's not quite as DLC-for-DLC's-sake as it sounds. The idea of having a second base as a change from Shepard's spaceship is kind of appealing, at least.
Also released today is the long-awaited 1.02 patch, which fixes up a troubling number of bugs and crashy stuff, and also sorts out the mucky textures on poor Garrus' face.
Incidentally, I also notice that Mass Effect itself is down to just £10 from EA's store wotsit, which sounds eninently reasonable.