The best games of 2010: Mass Effect 2

Is it an RPG or isn’t it? Well, I took the role of Commander Shepard and played this game religiously when it came out in January, upgrading my character’s attributes and those of my crew and ship. So I’d say it was and is this year’s best. BioWare chose to streamline a lot of the micro-management and stat shuffling into something that felt a little less involving than its predecessor but made room for a great story and entertaining character interaction. Side missions felt worthwhile and not just a mechanic to level grind as they were in the first game however, this time around, the combat was considerably tighter so having to do it over and over again wouldn’t have hurt so much. In Mass Effect, the most fun for me was exploring every possible conversation possible and the fighting took second place. The sequel changed all that, adding emphasis on combat without jeopardising a great chat system.

After completing Mass Effect 2 I spoke with a mate and we shared our respective experiences only to find they were incredibly different. I finished without any loss of life and throughout the game saw things that he was oblivious too. His journey ended with a number of squad mates dying as well as most of the crew and he acted like an utter git to everyone he met, allowing for some interesting conversations that where alien to me. Such examples sound trivial but I am sparing you from the entire conversation that lasted longer than I’d care to admit! But this is what great games do, they keep you talking about them long after you’re done and cleverly make you crave for a follow-up. Mass Effect 2 is rich in story and life with some of the best battles I’ve played to date. The mix of brute force with peaceful diplomacy gave the game grandeur and elevated BioWare to new levels of appreciation among gamers which is why Mass Effect 2 is my number one game of 2010.

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