REVIEW NOTE: SOME SPOILERS AHEAD
After a five-year wait since the end of Mass Effect 3 and the galaxies uniting against the reapers, the next game in the series provides fans more to discover and another weird alien species to fight. The latest game in the series is set in the Andromeda galaxy and follows new protagonists either Scott or Sara Ryder depending on your in game selection. You are to explore the galaxy as part of the Andromeda Initiative, a program put in place by various species as they attempt to work together to find a new home in this galaxy.
In terms of gameplay, this Mass Effect uses the same functions as did the previous games, blending third-person shooter with biotics to enhance combat. A new mechanic that has been added to the game is the jump-jet, which makes moving around the planets and combat more engaging especially when you are flying right above the Kett and they do not know what just hit them. Where the game takes a turn for the weird is the unnatural movements characters tend to make at times, including interesting facial animations that don’t seem human :).
The shooting mechanics are stronger than in the previous Mass Effect games, and the ability to choose powers that enhance your progression in the game which is great, we all hate being stuck as one character class. The biotics range from cloaking yourself for a stealthy kill, or a more direct attack with a massive shockwave that works more effectively when you are in the air using your jump-jet. Most of the battles are fun and can get quite frantic when you run out of ammo at a remnant structure.
Update: Bioware has released a patch that has fixed some of the issues.
STORY & PLOT
Five years ago the war against the reapers was an emotionally brutal one and this also tugs at your heart strings at times. Mass Effect: Andromeda drops players into the boots of either Scott Ryder or Sara Ryder, children of Alec Ryder the Pathfinder for the Andromeda Initiative. In the game, you need to form alliances with other alien species to prevent a new form of extinction in the Andromeda galaxy. After you choose between Scott or Sara you are forced to immediately make difficult choices for your family and later on for you crew you inherit. The Heleus cluster is what the Initiative chose to find a new home, unfortunately, there is a dark energy around the systems as well as inhospitable planets due to alien Remnant tech that is disturbing the ecosystems on those planets.
As the Pathfinder you are tasked to find various vaults on each planet with Remnant tech that if unlocked, can stop the environmental damage and make it a viable home for one of the outposts. If you think this will be a walk in the park you need to play any RPG to know there is always a fight around every corner, each vault and sites are also guarded by Remnant machines.
Needed more TLC, but still a good game
The Mass Effect Series has such a massive following that it was quite a disappointment when I saw that they approved the game as it was, however with upcoming updates and patches we should see the game recover from any of the issues it is currently facing. In conclusion, if you can look past the animations and glitches this is actually a great game.