Mass Effect Combat Review

What do you think of the combat in the Mass Effect series?

I played about half of Mass Effect 1 and beat Mass Effect 2, but it was so long ago I don’t really remember it. I remember it was REALLY boring cover shooting. Mass Effect 1 was a poorly optimized abomination that managed to run poorly on my much newer than the game computer, when ME2 didn’t. Enemies don’t move a lot. They shoot hitscan bullets, there’s the usual regen health/shields. You play peekaboo with cover and try to tank enemy hits while shooting them, because they take damage permanently and you don’t. They also don’t take hitstun, and all your weapons use the same ammo (ME2), or have cooldowns with unlimited ammo (ME1). There isn’t a lot of reason to move around during combat, because enemies don’t move around much, and you’re basically always using mid/long range effective weapons. Occasionally enemies throw grenades, I think. I don’t think you have grenades, only cooldown abilities, some of which might resemble grenades.

I played like, a vanguard or something offense oriented, and I basically relied on that one power that made pistols OP as fuck temporarily, so I’m not up on all the crazy biotic powers or whatever. You get powers on cooldown. They blow shit up, or freeze enemies temporarily. I honestly didn’t experiment as much as you probably could, so my opinion here might be slightly bad. I do however know that in ME1, cooldowns are independent of each other, and in ME2, they’re all based on the same cooldown. So in ME1, you get to use a bunch of different powers simultaneously, and in ME2, you need to pick which one you want to use. Some powers are stealth based, but enemies don’t have a real detection AI, so stealth is pretty shit. There’s one loyalty mission in ME2 that has super duper scripted stealth.

Here’s some random footage that includes combat on the highest difficulty, examine for yourself:

Many people prefer ME1 to ME2. This is because the story is better, and they’re fucking masochists.

Looks pretty I guess. Same dialogue wheel, except maybe 4 options now. Mako returns, alright. Scan visor, cute. OHHHHH. You can jump and teleport at things, now that’s interesting! And a sidestep dodge? Plus a biotic shield? Pretty neat! Abilities still operate on cooldown, which is kind of a letdown though. Weapon wheel with weapons on top, ammo types on bottom, not much to say. Clearly dynamic jumping around the environment. Jetpacking and boosting forward. Could be good for a change, we’ll have to see. It’s still gonna be held back a bit by cooldowns probably, but I like movement options.

One thought on “Mass Effect Combat Review

  1. mrconair February 6, 2017 / 1:49 am

    I agree with your criticisms of the first Mass Effect (the only one I’ve played thus far). The placement of enemies and design of levels feels very counterintuitive and the dialogue and animations feel very janky. Way too much time was needed in interface. I own 2, so I hope it does a lot of streamlining.


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