Mass Effect Andromeda - I'm not Commander Shepard and this is my favorite sequel

No, I’m not talking about the Pathfinders but the human team led by Scott’s and Sarah’s father. Scott/Sarah, Cora, Liam all greet each other for the first time after being awakened - they have never met until that moment. You would have thought that this team would have undergone extensive training together before heading into space since their job is so crucial. You don’t throw a team like this together at the last minute without them being aware of each other’s personalities and abilities.

I was just scanning through some reviews a few minutes ago and while my short, unscientific sample didn’t produce glowing reviews, the game didn’t really get tanked either. I saw praise for the story and characters, hate for the menus and overall dense “too much shit to do” aspect. It was the youtube crowd who really went overboard with the facial memes and the crabwalking and the other nonsense. It’s a solid game that perhaps could have used a little more love (and another Asari face or three).

A mid 70’s average review score is basically tanked for a big Triple A release. I agree with you that it’s a solid game, it just needed more time to bake I think.

IIRC Alec is the inventor/prime mover of the AI, so he also outfitted his kids with those jazzy stuff. Nepotism. 😂


  1. The reason that the AI was able to detect what they thought were ‘golden worlds’ to begin with was due to the geth using a mass effect relay, and the initiative were able to piggy back onto that and see into Andromeda. I get that it’s a little hand-wavey, but they do explain that in the game. Probably no more ridiculous than the mass effect relays to begin with.

  2. All the pathfinders had a SAM, but only Alec (father) and the two kids had the special chip in their heads that allowed SAM to do the whole ‘profile switching’ thing (which I never used). SAM has a much deeper connection to the three Ryders than anyone else. Because of that, one would assume that Alec always meant one of his kids to be the next Pathfinder, but his hand was forced when his kids’ helmet was shattered.

  3. The issue I still have with this game isn’t that it wasn’t reviewed great - I think ‘solid game’ is apt, although I liked it a lot more than that - but that Bioware wasn’t given a chance to improve on the new game design the way that AC:Odyssey improved on AC:Origins. Would have loved to have seen what the next game would have been (and seen some storylines from ME:A resolved or at least furthered).

  4. Still think it would have come out that The Illusive Man would have been the Benefactor. Or at least someone working with him. He did seem to be the series’ endless money supply.

Oh that’s right, the human SAM has a special neural interface that is kinda secret. Maybe the other SAMs don’t use special brain implants - if they had special brain surgery to get SAM connections they should have had a clue there was something going on, but maybe it’s just space earphones for the rest of them.

I think the biggest issue is that folks expected something new/added to the game design in this iteration. Or was it the crafting? There was probably a decent loot system in there, but it was so opaque. I forced myself to not look at the numbers and switch things up sometimes, and I remember finding that some of the assault rifles were actually grenade launchers. Except maybe they just look like grenades, not sure if they had splash damage. My favorite shotgun was the one that turned out to fire a single shot (I think it was a Dhan). There was also the AVP system, which was also used to unlock extra consumable slots … which I used once leading up to the final boss because I realised I hadn’t used any of the ammos yet, saving them for “a really big fight”. And then realised that I hadn’t actually put anything in the new consumables slots, so I don’t think I ever used any of those Cobra RPG things I bought for a rainy day.

The big issue for me was I just hated everyone. I hated my Ryder, it really bugged me that this young adult fresh out of diapers got this undeserved promotion. The companions weren’t that great, there was no one that I wanted as a companion let alone as a romance. Peebee was just ugh as was Liam and the others.

I thought some of the stuff was just stupid. Yeah, I’m a pathfinder fresh off the boat and I get decide what to do over that murder investigation. I decide what kind of outpost it is but it means nothing. It had far too many side quests and I thought it was too much DA:I open world shit. At least DA:I had some satisfactory companions and the story was decent. I found this story somewhat lacking, and the vaults all looked the same and well, were boring. Clear out the vault and the planet became instantly terraformed, uh, ok.

Not being able to control my companions in combat was a huge negative. Huge. I think this was an expectation for a lot of players and was a disappointment. Despite that combat was ok, but since the companions were pointless in it, probably would be best to go without them or just use them as cannon fodder.

I just expected better writing I guess.

I bought this game at launch, and I think all players should have the expectation that the game not be buggy mess. This is not entitlement. Any one BUYING the game is not entitled. No one buys anything at launch, at full price with the intent to be a hater. I thought female Ryder was very creepy with that smile, and still having that inappropriate smile with some of those interactions.

The game isn’t as bad as the internet makes it out to be, but we all expectations of something better. I don’t think it merrited anything better than a 7, and I don’t even want any sequels or dlc with any of these characters. But honestly Bioware, EA or whoever was responsible made their bed, and they can lie in it.

Disclosure, I stopped playing after about 40 hours. I just had enough.

You play boring, lacking games for 40 hours? That sounds miserable.

I had pretty much the opposite reaction of you. I grew to like most of the characters - particularly Jaal and Drack. And the conversations the two side characters had while driving around were often hilarious.

I don’t know why you’d be upset you couldn’t control the two characters with you in a firefight - you had as much control over them as any of the other Mass Effect games. And my companions killed the enemy quite a bit, so not sure why you thought they were pointless

As for the bugs - yeah, they had a bunch upon launch, and while they never did fix them all, it’s a better game now than it was. I don’t now (and never did) have issues with anyone complaining about game bugs. It was those that worked hard to bring down the game because of ‘tired faces’ and other stupid shit like that. I think there was a good game to be had with that system - again, ME:A may never have been that, but I had high hopes for a sequel. Too bad it never happened.

Diana has a point about squad powers, you can’t fire them off manually like you could in the first trilogy, there’s no power wheel.

That remains to be seen - the trailer for the next game pretty clearly takes place quite some time after the original trilogy, possibly into the era of Andromeda. I have a sneaking suspicion this game will tie the two together.

I can only hope.

I fired this up again to continued my playthrough. I forgot, but there are a lot of menus. The inventory menus, journal menus, Apex mission menus, research and developement menus, shop menus, planet rewards menus, planet viability which is accessed only from your cabin screen…

And the Apex and Planet rewards are on a timer so you want to return to them on a regular basis to collect rewards/start new missions. I think they could have automated the planet rewards thing at least because all it is clicking a button to recieve everything and restart the timer (needy) outside of selecting rewards when you have points to spend.

I am using Cora and Drack and ran around finishing up some Assignments but I am skipping all the Tasks unless I inadvertently compete them along the way. This is doing it right, right?

IMO, tasks are fine. Still did them all. The ones that were a problem where the ‘random’ ones - ie, a datapad or something you needed to scan or explode would randomly show up at an enemy site. Those used to be a giant PITA when the game game out. Now? Finding those random things is a lot easier.

And of course, they’re all worth XP. They certainly are the more minor of quests overall. I still completed them all. Some of them are even funny (like the stoned guys on Kadara).

Following the release of Mass Effect: Legendary Edition , and on the heels of news that the next installment of the series might be a sequel to the original trilogy along with Andromeda , I decided to revisit that ill-fated title. Turns out, it’s pretty fantastic.

Huh. Who knew?

But, frankly, the disappointment had everything to do with what legions of button-mashers wanted and nothing to do with whether or not the game’s developers succeeded in making the game they wanted to make.

What if what the game designers wanted wasn’t good?

It’s really not. I also played it after the OG trilogy and the difference in quality is staggering, and that was after I modded Andromeda to the gills. Is it still an alright game? Yeah, absolutely. But let’s not pretend it’s some pinnacle of the series or gaming in general. Much like DAI it just oozes ‘wasted potential’.

Yeah, we’ll reserve pretending that for ME2. :P

You are of course entitled to your opinion.

Author could have stopped at the title as he did little to go into why the game is “actually pretty good”.