Hot Take

Apr. 24th, 2017 02:04 pm
fereldanwench: (Mass Effect - Selene Ryder)
[personal profile] fereldanwench
I'm about 60% finished with MEA, and I don't know if it's just the afterglow of alien cunnilingus talking, but I think I like Andromeda more than Inquisition.

- I still prefer smaller maps and story-focused locations, but Andromeda generally open-worlds better than Inquisition. (Havarl is like the fucking Hinterlands, though, with respawning enemies every 30 seconds LIKE FUCK ME I JUST WANT TO PICK UP SOME GODDAMN LOOT GET OFF MY ASS.)
- The codex system is awesome. I love checking up on Selene's psych profile and reading updates about the relationship development with her crew. Seeing little updates like "Jaal loves you" and "Cora values you as a leader and a friend" honestly warms my heart.
- Ryder > Inquisitor. Ryder feels more like a fully realized character, like Hawke and Shepard, rather than a watered down but voiced Warden, like the Inquisitor. And Fryda Wolff's voice is a gift. Like a warmer Jennifer Hale as FemShep. I love it.
- THE BEST CREW. And they interact with each other. They joke and fight and tease each other and share anecdotes and bond over cultural similarities and differences. The Tempest is so homey. I grew really attached to individual characters in other DA & ME games, but this is the first time I can relate to those "ALL these guys are my family" memes.
- More cutscenes! And the conversations that don't have a fully staged cutscene at least pan the camera in for a little more immersion.
- We get tough decisions that pack an emotional punch and have immediate consequences, and a good balance between light-hearted, silly quests and heart-breaking missions.
- Did I mention alien cunnilingus??

Which isn't to say the game is perfect, by any means:

- It still suffers from having no real sense of urgency as a means of giving the player freedom to explore--If BW is gonna insist on continuing with these open-world/exploration games that still have a central, save-the-world-from-doom story, they gotta find a way to balance the two. An in-game calendar with a clear deadline like in FO4, a quest-counting mechanism like what they had in ME2, something.
- Similarly, there are definitely some issues if you don't pace the story as intended, which isn't always obvious. Example: I did two main missions back-to-back and didn't talk to all my crew in between--They'll refer to the earlier mission like it just happened, then I have to exit the conversation and come back to hear their thoughts about the most recent one.
- There is definitely some problematic writing. Gil's personal story stands out to me. Having hit the climax with Jaal's romance, I think the exclusion of his male romance has as many bad implications as excluding Cullen's. Jaal is very sweet and adoring and sends beautiful, heartful messages to Ryder saying how lovely she is in body and soul; deciding to deny mlm Ryders such a tender romance and instead giving them the more dramatic, non-companion "bad boys" raises some questions.
- Ryder's goofy fucking facial animations soured what was otherwise a very sweet and sexy moment with Jaal. Screenshots later.
- Also, at least for Jaal, there's no "Can I get a kiss" option after romance. It's small, but I miss that from DAO/DAI.

But all in all, at this point, I think the game is a much more fun experience than Inquisition.
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