Spoiler Warning:
Mass Effect Part 1

By Shamus Posted Thursday Jan 28, 2010

Filed under: Spoiler Warning 93 comments

I hear you saying, “Shamus – it’s all right if I call you Shamus, right? Great. Anyway, It’s nice that you’re making Stolen Pixels, Shamus Plays LotRO, reposting Chainmail Bikini with commentary, writing on your blog, doing the weekly Experienced Points column, making a text adventure, and even putting out the occasional video, but I’m kind of feeling like you’re not making enough content for me.”

Okay, fine. Since you decided to guilt-trip me, I guess I’ll do another thing…

I spend most of my multiplayer gaming time with Josh Viel (fellow Escapist contributor) and Randy Johnson. (a.k.a. Captain Butterwolf.) They helped me make this comic and together the three of us played as the Trek crew in Champions Online. We’ve also played a smattering of other games from Left 4 Dead to Borderlands.

Anyway, we had the idea to do some sort of video review / fan commentary / Let’s Play kind of… thing. We’re going through the original Mass Effect, with Josh playing and Randy and I watching over LiveStream. Think of this as sitting together on a couch and watching one of us play, and you can join us. (When I’m with my brothers, this is one of my favorite things to do. I arguably like discussing a game as someone else plays more than I like doing it alone. Eh. I guess it depends on the game.)

We’ve all played through Mass Effect, and it seemed like a natural choice. Our plan is to go through the whole game, covering all of the major plot areas. (We’re not going to make anyone sit through the tedious filler sidequests though. If we do those, we’ll edit them out.)

I thought I’d have lots of interesting things to say about the universe (I’ve had more to say on the game since I wrote my review) but I found myself getting caught up in the game. At any rate, here is our trip through the tutorial:

Anticipating complaints: Next time I’m going to try to have more substantive things to say, and we’re going to make it a point to minimize or cut all of the menu and interface activity. This was very much a process of learning as we go, so try to forgive the rough edges. (But please do give feedback if you’re so inclined.)

I made a big deal about starting “another project” but this one requires very little time. Josh handles the editing and uploading, so all I have to do is show up and run my mouth.

 


From The Archives:
 

93 thoughts on “Spoiler Warning:
Mass Effect Part 1

  1. Randy Johnson says:

    You almost bit it in the tutorial. Pretty much the best foreshadowing you could have had Shamus.

  2. FFJosh says:

    Hey, I only died once!

    Just wait until we get to the barfight. We may actually have to cut that, I always seem to die there.

  3. Alrenous says:

    Now I want a game to just break down and rate you on jerkassiness. With absurd, out of proportion gameplay consequences.

  4. Moridin says:

    You’re making me feel bad about not updating my blog daily. Of course, no one reads my blog anyway and it’s only to make me write down at least something, but still…

  5. SolkaTruesilver says:

    Shamus. Is. A. Machine.

    How can you sleep?

    1. Shamus says:

      SolkaTruesilver: I owe all my success to my not having played Dwarf Fortress yet.

      Drink!

  6. NickR says:

    Shamus ““ it's all right if I call you Shamus, right?
    SLOW DOWN. You’re messing up my google reader. I have this OCD thing where I try keep all my items read and my twenty sided subscription ALWAYS has stuff in it. I can’t keep it empty. So either reduce your posts or get me something to help with the OCD. (Or do some of my work and free up some of my time)

  7. Raygereio says:

    As with all LP’s, here are the useless comments from the annoying guy that played this game to much (as in twice).

    -It’s not always Ashley that walks up to the beacon. It’s always your potential romance option, so it’s Carth if you’re female.
    -There is no meleebutton: you automelee if you’re violating an enemies personal space and press fire. Though it’s pretty much useless save for one specific fight. The damage is pitiful and throw is better and knocking people over.

    It will be interesting to hear you guy’s commentary when you get to what for me was one of the silliest parts of the game: presenting your irrefutable evidence to the council.

    Edit:
    Oh, one more things. You made remarks about the breasts on the female armour. Check out Ashley’s butt, especially in her default armour. It lifts and spreads…

  8. Gahazakul says:

    Not too shabby Shamus!

    If anyone is new to the Let’s Play idea and is looking for more high quality videos I would like to make a recommendation.

    http://chipandironicus.com/ is home to two guys LPing up a storm and are funny to boot! The MGS2 review is still in process and the 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand is exceptionally silly. They also have a completed MGS3 and a few others on their Viddler page.

    I highly recommend the Metal gear solid 3 Let’s Play, those games are better watched than played. Heres their viddler page. http://www.viddler.com/explore/ChipCheezum/videos/

  9. neothoron says:

    “you can join us”

    Hell, sure!

    Here are my “insights”:

    Rant about weapon selection
    Don’t complain about pistols – they’re actually excellent weapons: they have decent rate of fire and decent aim – the low damage is something that gets better later in the game.

    The train fight is easier when I played an Infiltrator – hurray for the Sniper rifle.

    Anytime I hear Shepard’s voice
    Oh God I didn’t know that male Shepard’s voice was so awful. I wouldn’t know, I played it with french voices.

    Rant about Ashley’s armor
    Hey, my Shepard was wearing pink armor. My male Shepard.

    Why does being nice lead to saying idiotic things?
    -Then don’t pick the good options!
    -“Conan wouldn’t do this”
    -BS. Conan was raised in a puritan spacer military right-wing family. He has had to repress his emotions for his whole life. Of course he would lash out. Besides everyone treats him as a holy saint for his heroic deeds – how can he stand that without accumulating rage?

    Shamus reacting to the PC decryption mini-game
    Ah, now that’s one thing that I really wanted to hear – probably like everyone that has read your review of Mass Effect though has played it on PC.

    Saren saying he will kill you.
    Wait, does he ever do something concrete to kill you?

    Overall, I lost one hour of my life, but I enjoyed that video quite a lot.

    1. Shamus says:

      neothoron: I believe the “conan wouldn’t do this” was a joke implying that Conan O’Brian wouldn’t go around hitting people.

      1. m says:

        Back from da future! You have nothing but good ahead of ya guys. Fallout 3, Bioshock and ME2 killed themselves in shame when they heard you were LPing them.

  10. Robyrt says:

    Male Shepard just invites pain. Jennifer Hale is the best part of the Mass Effect series.

    I do like this video format though; commenting on someone else playing video games is a time-honored male bonding experience :)

  11. neothoron says:

    Oh. Right. I hadn’t watched the 15 first minutes – wasn’t expecting character creation to be worth watching.

  12. Zaghadka says:

    *shrug* Needs editing. I’m not sure if that’s the extremely long cut-scenes or you guys. No. Wait. It’s the cut-scenes. I love the BioWare patented “semi-interactive” cut-scene where they figure that picking from a set of “choices” that leads to the same place is more interesting than just rambling on without giving you the choice.

    It’s like a “Choose Your Own Adventure” book where all options lead to the next page! :P

  13. LCV says:

    I’m falling over laughing at times. :D

    Keep the dry commentary going.

  14. Pffh says:

    Only one complaint, it’s a bit to long to be a single video 5 20-25 minute bits would be better so you could watch one part while say waiting for something.

  15. Awetugiw says:

    The game really does seem to lack dialogue options that do not make you sound stupid. I ended up choosing not based on the stupid good/stupid jerk alignment stuff but on what was the least embarrassing thing to say. And even then the difference between what the option implies you will say and what you actually say makes you feel like an idiot half the time.

    Of course saying stupid things is quite common in the game, NPCs tend to do it as well. Especially the diplomat, who really should have chosen another job.

  16. someboringguy says:

    Yes, Shamus, you should really update your blog more often.I only lose 4-5 hours a week on your site :(
    I am trying to find some LP that are funny, but they seem to be so rare. I would rather see them in screenshot format instead of video, because in videos sometimes the voices sound awful, or the music of the game is too loud or the guy screams his lines for some reason.

  17. Taellosse says:

    Shamus, you’ll be pleased to know that there are, in fact, bathrooms on the new Normandy in Mass Effect 2. You can even go in them both, and if you go into the one for the opposite gender, the ship AI informs you, politely, that your gender’s bathroom is at the other end of the hall. ;-) There’s also visible crew quarters, though the ones you can enter are clearly too small to cover even half the crew (which would be all that’s required, since the codex makes it clear they share bunks in shifts). But they’re on a deck with doors you can’t enter, so presumably there are more they didn’t bother to model.

  18. RTBones says:

    OK, have to admit, laughed out loud at the commentary in parts. The, “Its a Geth with a laser pointer,” line had me just about have coffee up my nose.

    The character customization portion doesnt do much for me. I usually do a quick custom and then get on with the game. But I did enjoy the banter between the three of you.

    Personally, I dont mind the long file. I can icon the video and just listen to the three of you, checking in every now and again.

    Looking forward to the next one.

  19. Ben says:

    Since apparently this is a problem, if you want to unlock a skill, its always done by leveling the one right above it.

  20. Bryan says:

    Well… I played OpFor about two days ago actually. I, at least, got the Adrian Shepard reference. :-)

  21. eri says:

    Who steps up to the beacon depends upon your character’s gender. Male = Ashley, Female = Kaiden. Not so subtle hint at blossoming romance, there.

  22. SoldierHawk says:

    Oh. My. GOD.

    Shamus, not only are you a machine, but you keep doing stuff that makes me more and more happy!!

    I haven’t been able to watch it yet because its so long (fwiw, I kinda agree with Pffh that 20-30 minute videos would be much more digestible, even if you post several at once. Its just easier and more convenient) so I can’t give any comments yet, but rest assured I will soon!

    Btw, the first couple vids of any endeavor are always a learning experience. I do LPs on my YouTube account (okay, I pretty much do AN LP of Half-Life, but I’m branching out slowly!) and the first couple videos are very rough in terms of pure technical quality. It took me a good 4-5 vids to figure out the best settings and way to use the equipment and edit. The more you do this, the better it’ll get (which is another argument for doing the vids in smaller chunks–more practice, and easier to edit!)

  23. Pickly says:

    Is Shamus generating enough content? I’m still not sure. He hasn’t written a 5-part series on his predictions and hopes for Elemental:War of magic, a preferred list of features for Diablo 3, A series on his predictions for the starcraft 2 expansions and beta, a review of Civilization 4 mods, plus posts on a number of game types that I don’t usually play (Like FPS or single player RPG.) All in all, the content has been a bit slow lately. :)

  24. Smirker says:

    I’m surprised that all three of you had played through the game but apparently didn’t read through the Codex much. The geth, the Husks a lot of the other small elements you make comments about were all explained. large issues of course, like the lazy bastasich who hid behind the crates was very inexplicable I agree.

    I realize you were trying to make this a more light-hearted and entertaining Let’s Play; but it just didn’t do much for me. Although there were some amusing comments (such as the geth with a laser pointer as someone already noted).

    p.s. Don’t forget to level up! After the first death I don’t think you ever went back and redid the skills, nor did you do so later either. Or equipped better armor and weapons you picked up.

    On a sidenote, while it’s been some time since I played ME; I was surprised you guys skipped so many of the packs and crates lying around. I guess I’m just a more OCD explorer-type of player than you three.

    I’ll likely give the rest of this series a pass, but I hope you three have fun with it!

  25. Zak McKracken says:

    It takes you the best part of 6 minutes to make a choice where your character was born, during which half of the time I only get to see a mouse pointer bobbing up and down and noone saying anything meaningful except “it doesn’t matter anyway. So, if it doesn’t, why don’t you just exchange three sentences and click on it already?

    I know that you anticipated this kind of feedback (and I also fully support you putting more stuff on this page), but still … I also sometimes like to watch someone else play a game or play while others watch, but if I want to show someone a game, I don’t spend 6 minutes (probably more, but I stopped watching) staring boredly at the opening dialogue. Not without someone complaining that I’m taking too long to decide on a character, that is…
    … which happens all the time, so … yes, I’d probably also play like that, but it’s actually really not interesting to watch someone do that.

  26. Josh says:

    Shamus,

    I really liked the video, I don’t mind it being long as the game itself is also long. The witty and teasing manner in which you three interacted made it light.

    Awetugiw,

    I agree that the diplomat should quit and pursue other career. It looked like he really hated his job.

  27. someboringguy says:

    Just watched the video.Good stuff, but I would like more comments.
    Also, I also spend a lot of time creating a character, like an hour and a half or so.:)
    At the beginning if you choose a ruthless character, there is a funnier line, like “he’s sociophatic, psychotic killer that has no respect for human life.Are you sure that’s what we want?””Yeah!”.Something like this.

  28. SolkaTruesilver says:

    @ Shamus

    Well played, sir. Well played.

    I can’t believe I got outdwarved by Shamus… :-S

    1. Daf says:

      It was a low blow indeed

  29. Rick W says:

    @Taellosse: However, Shepard’s personal quarters don’t seem to have a bathroom attached, which means she has to go two decks down to find a bathroom.

    At least the elevators are better in ME2*.

    * They weren’t bad in the PC version of ME1, either. However, they now use actual loading screens instead of using the elevator to try to disguise it.

    1. krellen says:

      Shepard’s quarters DO have a private bathroom. It’s cleverly hidden behind that featureless metal wall beside your private desk (where you can check messages and achievements). Just walk up to the wall and voilà .

      Oh, and if you think Ashley’s armour is bad, wait until you see Miranda’s outfit in ME2.

  30. Harry Sebben says:

    I already knew you had a face for the radio, but it sounds like you also have a voice for textual blogging. It didn’t help that you were obsessing about the husks and their impracticality since it wasn’t like they could use human central nervous systems as a preexisting backend for AI, or take advantage of the musculature already present, or carry explosives that were too large to propel ballistically.

    1. Shamus says:

      Harry Sebben: Feedback is welcome. Personal insults are not. Particularly since this is your first and only comment on my site. Is this how you normally introduce yourself to people?

      Get lost. You are not welcome here.

      1. Shamus says:

        The sheer audacity of your comment continues to enrage me:

        If you are so offended by the sight of common people then go watch television, you jeering, vacuous jerk. It’s full of beautiful people so as not to offend your demanding yet shallow tastes.

  31. The Scarlet Mathematician says:

    I got the Adrian Shepard reference right away. I’m not sure what that says about me.

  32. Eltanin says:

    Shamus, I’m still watching the video but I’m delighted to find that you’re returning to Mass Effect given the fact that I just played through it for the first time myself. And that I’ve been poring over your review entries (and even added a comment which is a rare thing for me) and generally considering your POV on the game as I played.

    This is candy for me! Thank you!

  33. Eltanin says:

    By the way, I’m especially glad to see that you’re going through on the PC version, as that seems to be a much better experience. Well, I say that based on your review and my experience, I don’t own an XBox so I can’t speak from personal comparative experience.

  34. Narida says:

    If i remember correctly, your pre-service history gives you a bonus to renegade/paragon or nothing at all, depending on what you choose. xD

  35. Eltanin says:

    As far as decrypting crates etc., I would recommend giving the mouse a miss entirely. I found that using only the arrow keys at that point made life much easier.

  36. Sheer_Falacy says:

    I think one is +2 paragon, one +2 renegade, and the last +1 each. Not a huge deal.

  37. Jabor says:

    Regardless of where you go on the internet, you’ll find people that have nothing better to do than insult people and try to annoy them (in truth, you’ve parodied them quite a lot in your other comics ;)

    Don’t let ’em get to you, man.

  38. KremlinLaptop says:

    I think the female Shepard has far better voice acting, she tends to emote more while still being hardassed military sort of. Also when you play as the female it’s Kaidan who goes to mess around with the beacon like a putz – giving you just one more reason to leave him on the ship.

    I really loved this though, keep doing them and soon there’ll be yet ANOTHER thing on The Escapist to watch. What, a bit pre-mature for that? Honestly, I wouldn’t even want editing, I think as long as they’re only about an hour long and you keep it up with the commentary it’s interesting to watch.

    Also the first time I played the PC version of the decryption game? Pure friggin’ bliss. I swear, I was just in awe of how much better it was then the simon-says thing on the box. Which MAKES NO SENSE because there’s no reason the xbox version couldn’t have the same sort of game.

    It means that the mash the right set of buttons game was the best one they could come up with at the time. Seriously. Scary stuff.

    1. Sydney says:

      Absolutely. Mark Meer is some no-name hack that got hired to do like four Bethesda games, and sucked in all of them. But female Shepard is voiced by Jennifer Hale, and she does a fantastic job. I never play as male Shepard (despite being male myself, and not normally crossplaying in video games) because Mark Meer just ruins my experience of it.

  39. Mark says:

    It’s not a huge deal, but your pre-service history does affect how some side missions play out, and people will occasionally refer to it in conversation.

  40. DaveMc says:

    I haven’t had a chance to see this, yet, but I love the concept. There are plenty of games (say, *everything* in the first-person realm) that I can’t personally stand to play, but I often hear admiring comments about writing in these games (Bioshock, Portal) and I’ve equally often wished that I could just watch someone else play them. I always thought that was crazy talk, nobody would post videos of games whose play time runs into the double digits of hours … But I see I was wrong. Excellent. :)

  41. Blanko2 says:

    YES!
    this is great.
    now i just gotta finish playing before you get to the part i’m at in the game.

    or just stay a couple of steps ahead of you. which will be tough cuz im all OCD about side-quests

    this looks like itll be fun, though 1 hour + is a bit much to watch in one go.

  42. Cadrys says:

    Rick W. @ 32: The door to the Captain’s Head is next to his/her desk, it’s just not marked.

    Right next to the {redacted to not spoil the easter egg}.

  43. Nicos Amblecrown says:

    First time I’m posting, but I’ve been reading the blog for a while.

    Really enjoyed the video (except for the Spacer decision at the beginning) and I had to point out that even though I played OpFor when it came out, it wasn’t until watching the video that I remembered “Adrian Shepard” was the name of the main character, which makes it even weirder that my ME1 and ME2 character is named Adrian Shepard!

    And from what everybody is saying, I’m inspired to go back through and play as a lady Shepard just to hear Hale’s version of the character.

  44. Spectralist says:

    I like the video, though I hope you guys can figure out some way to avoid talking over eachother so much.

    And on bathrooms, there’s three of them in the ship you use in Mass Effect 2.

  45. Jabor says:

    Just for the record, I used shotguns for a good part of the game, and I was an Infiltrator.

  46. LK says:

    If you guys could try and normalize the volume levels of the different speakers, that’d likely help improve the quality of watching the video.

    Any time I’d turn the volume up a smidge to hear the game audio, or Shamus speaking (both of which are faint), one of the other guys would suddenly speak up and boom out of my speakers louder than I’d like.

    It’s not horrible but it gets distracting after a while.

  47. KremlinLaptop says:

    LK: I was thinking the same thing, at first I was going to suggest Shamus might want to invest in a better microphone but what you say is more accurate. I’m guessing a good way to do this would be to have the three of them individually recording the audio on their computers while at the same time the video of the game being played is recorded. Everyone sends in their recorded audio and one guy mixes it all adjusting for balance, spikes and noise.

  48. Martin Annadale says:

    Wow. Next time let Shamus play. I really enjoyed this video, but watching some of it was really frustrating. I wanted to shout “Barrier is unlocked with Warp” so badly. I loved how the mouse cursor missed the unlock toggle by pixels as he’s trying to find the unlock for Barrier. Patterns in design. Everything else is unlocked by the skill directly above it. Why not Barrier?

    But I have to agree. Barrier is by far the best Biotic power in the game (barring maybe Singularity, which a vangaurd can’t get normally).

  49. Avilan the Grey says:

    …Mass Effect… The game I have heard so much good about and haven’t felt like playing. I heard it has started to show up in Bargain Bins, but on the other hand Mass Effect 2 is coming soon and it is supposed to be better on all levels.
    I’ll probably wait until that is reviewed before hunting down ME1…

    1. krellen says:

      Not all levels. ME2 introduces ammo management in the form of “thermal clips”. I really, really, really despise that feature. It leads to nonsense (having to switch to inferior weapons after long fights, having to scour battlefields for thermal clips instead of moving on to the next objective, forcing you to use different weapons.)

      1. Avilan the Grey says:

        So it’s more like any other game with guns then? ;)

        I bought the Digital Collector’s Edition yesterday (ME2), and it is downloading at home while I am at work. I saw they also sold ME1 for a good bargain price but I couldn’t afford to get both.

  50. someboringguy says:

    I can’t figure it out which is Shamus’ voice.:(

  51. Zaxares says:

    To echo what some of the others have said, a lot of your questions can be answered by reading through the Codex, like the Husks. The Codex itself even questions why the Geth would go to the bother of creating Husks when the reclaimed minerals from a human body are negligible “although the value of using them as shock troops is unquestionable”.

    Oh, and the markings on the Turian’s faces are paint. You learn this again from the Codex. :)

    And the reason why Nihlus let down his guard around Saren was because Saren was actually his mentor and teacher in the Spectres.

    Good point on the detonation charges though! I’m guessing the reason Saren opted for them was because that way they can blame the destruction of the colony on some nuclear power plant gone haywire or something similar. If they’d used the ship’s main cannon, it would be pretty obvious that a Dreadnought-class ship (which are extremely rare in the galaxy) was involved in the attack.

    Ahhh, I’m sounding like some hyper fanboi leaping to the defense of his beloved game! >.<

  52. Zaxares says:

    Oh! And if your character is male, it’s Ashley who activates the beacon. If you’re female, it’s Kaidan.

  53. Ian says:

    I did enjoy the commentary but I found it too painful to watch the guy playing the game. I finished my first play through last night as it happensso it was all fresh in my mind and watching him fumble around, miss stuff like how to unlock barrier and having trouble using the damage indicator ring and apparently the scanner in teh corner showing him where he’s being shot from leap in and drag the controls away to save him. It frustrated me so much.

    I like the idea of the video and the format I’m just not sure something as long winded as Mass Effect was the best choice.

    I also never knew how bad the voice acting on the Male Shepherd is. I played through as female and now I’ve heard the alternative I’m glad.

    1. Dreadjaws says:

      Yeah, I also had a problem with this. I don’t mean to sound insulting by any means, but he does a terrible job leveling up (and claiming the game has no “ding” when it clearly has, but he missed it), can’t figure out the obvious stuff and then goes on sarcastically saying “Hey thanks. I didn’t know what Overkill did. I haven’t played this game before.”.

      Well, it does look like you haven’t, dude. Again, I don’t want to be insulting, I just feel maybe this wasn’t the game for him, or that he should have taken some practice before making the video.

      Still, the video comments were fun enough to make up for the bad playing.

  54. Martin Annadale says:

    @Zaxares

    I’m with you. Next to Baldur’s Gate 2, Mass Effect is my most replayed game of all time. I love the setting, the dialogue, the history. I even enjoyed riding around in the mako (although those mountains WERE sometimes extremely annoying).

    I’ve finished Baldur’s gate 2 once every year since its release. I’m probably going to end up doing something similar with Mass effect, or more probably Mass Effect 2. Really waiting for my copy to arrive. They said Tuesday (next week).

    Oh, I’m also the only person I know who doesn’t change the way Sheppard looks. In my mind Sheppard is male and looks like the default setup. He’s a character like Master Chief or Gorden Freeman, for me. Playing as a female Sheppard, or as a different look one is unthinkable.
    And I thought he’s voice acting wasn’t so bad. Maybe I should give the female one a chance.

  55. Randy Johnson says:

    Martin, do you actually think Shamus would be better at this game? I was his healer in Champions online and I can irrefutably confirm his ineptitude in the face of danger. If he can’t repeatedly haymaker something, he doesn’t know what to do.

  56. Martin Annadale says:

    It wasn’t that the other player played badly as such, just in a frustrating manner. I mean he did die in the tutorial section, but that could be attributed to the fact that he’s concentrating on what was being said and not what he was doing. Knowing Shamus, though, he probably would have at least planned his character beforehand, and would have known what he would need for the abilities he wanted.

  57. Randy Johnson says:

    Ironic you say that, Josh is playing thru mass effect again right now to solve that issue.

  58. Neil Polenske says:

    This video triggered the oddest bit of behavior I’ve exhibited in a good long while:

    It got me to buy Mass Effect.

    You gotta understand I DO NOT impulse buy for ANYTHING. That’s not the strange part…well it is actually, but the STRANGER part is the reason why.

    It wasn’t that I liked the video, I’ll tell ya that. It wasn’t BAD per se, but it bored the hell outta me. I didn’t get more than halfway in before I stopped it and I don’t intend to come back (no offense). No, the real reason was is far more whiskey tango foxtrot.

    I bought a twenty dollar game I never had ANY intention of purchasing prior because I didn’t agree with the choices in his responses in converstations. I thought they were out of character, so I bought the game to play it the ‘right’ way.

    Having never played tabletop game in my entire 20+ years of life, this is something about myself I didn’t know. And it cost me twenty bucks!

    I’ll expect reimbursment from you in the mail promptly, Shamus. :P

  59. MikeSSJ says:

    Very nice, though I have to say that the video-length IS a bit much. Truth be told – when I started the video, I was CONVINCED it was an 11-minute-video.
    Ten minutes later, I was wondering when it was going to end, and actually noticed the one in front of the eleven >_>

    Anyway – I love this kind of stuff (reminds me of Unskippable), but it DID drag somewhat – didn’t help that some of the choices made somewhat bothered me (and let’s face it: Playing Jerk (I mean “Renegade”) is much more entertaining than Paragon…

    Still – I’m looking forward to the next one.

    Oh yeah – one question: I see they changed the minigame for overriding Security locks in the PC-version. Is that minigame used for every instance where XBOX had “Simon Says”, or do the mineral-searches (and other instances I might not remember right now) have yet another “new” game?

  60. Raygereio says:

    @MikeSSJ: yeah, save for a mining laser (that does have a little Simon Says routine) all locks, mineral searches, etc, are done with that little frogger game.

  61. wootage says:

    Well this was a fun way to waste an hour lol. GJ, and keep it up! The MST3K crew would be proud.

    Oh, and did you have to use the fix for the Windows Explorer crash that ME’s DRM causes? I’m just curious as to whether it was just a few people, or everyone that had their Windows messed up thanks to the DRM.

  62. Rick W says:

    Finally watched the video (what do you expect, you posted it while I had two days where I couldn’t move my car so I had nothing better to do than plow through ME2, but now I’m back at work), and some comments:

    * Your origin has a few effects. First, you get starting Paragon/Renegade points depending which origins you choose (Spacer/War Hero is +20 Paragon, Earthborn/Ruthless is +20 Renegade). You get one quest based on where you choose to be from, and one quest changes slightly depending on your military history.

    * Iris color… I don’t remember noticing it in ME1, but I definitely did in ME2; and I’m dead serious when I say I was distracted trying to figure out if I’d made Shepard’s eyes purple. (I was aiming for blue, and it may have just looked purple because of lighting and/or red hair.)

    * “In this game when you say, ‘You were careless,’ you mean, ‘I am going to punch you and then insult your entire family line.'” I imagine Ashley’s used to that. At least the second part.

  63. FFJosh says:

    @wootage (#66):

    Yeah, I’ve gone through just about every trick in the book to increase Mass Effect’s performance so that I can actually record the video, stream it, and play it without my PC spontaneously combusting. Mass Effect was probably the worst PC port Bioware has ever published, and Mass Effect 2 is leagues better in terms of performance. Good to see Bioware is finally realizing that outsourcing PC ports to random companies and hoping they don’t screw everything up is a bad idea.

    On the other hand, I didn’t have any of these fixes working when I first played through the game about a year ago. I beat the whole game with it crashing every fifteen minutes, and sometimes freezing my entire PC along with it. Not the greatest experience of my gaming career.

  64. Sheer_Falacy says:

    @Rick W:
    Iris color is considerably more irrelevant in ME2, actually. I don’t know what happens when you go paragon, but as renegade your eyes will be glowing red by the end of the game. Heck, they were the only part of my face I could actually see since I wore a full helmet the whole game. While the two glowing red dots was pretty creepy, I’d recommend not wearing a helmet because you will eat, drink, and kiss through it somehow. So it’s pretty clear that Commander Shephard is a ninja.

  65. Rick W says:

    @Sheer_Falacy:
    Only if you go Renegade, and don’t build the thing that heals your scars.

    Neither applies in my case. By time I used the scar-healing device, the scars were mostly gone anyway. In any case, I could see Shepard’s eyes quite clearly.

  66. Neil Polenske says:

    Okay, I’ve played the first game up to the point where I just became a Spectre. Here’s what I think so far:

    To look at your journal, press J.

    To look at your codex, press O.

    To look at your map, press M.

    To look at your current objective…click on the map screen at random intervals apparently…

    To equip weapons/armor, press I.

    To slot your abilities after leveling up, I cannot remember for the life of me. Haven’t done it since the first time in tutorial.

    To find out what the stats of your party or ANY characters, can’t remember. Hell, I don’t even think I was TOLD.

    To view your inventory, equip characters, check their stats, change the game settings and save in Final Fantasy 2 that was released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment system IN NINETEEN NINETY FUCKING ONE…press the x button on your controller.

    Mass Effect was ported from A CONSOLE! What the FUCK happened?!

    1. Dreadjaws says:

      Nothing happened. You still can do all those things pressing just one key: Esc. The others are shortcuts, which I find welcome, and, in fact, I absolutely missed in Mass Effect 2 and 3.

  67. Sheer_Falacy says:

    You could just press escape and get to a menu from which all of those are accessible. Convenient hotkeys is a plus, not a minus – if you don’t want to memorize them, don’t use them. And the keys they chose are pretty darn intuitive.

    ME2 removes the convenient hotkeys (except for map), but then again you don’t need to look at most of them anywhere near as often. Goodbye inventory fiddling, and good riddance.

    Next you’ll complain about F5 and F9 being too hard to memorize as quicksave and quickload, and how none of your NES games allowed saving so why should Mass Effect.

  68. Luke Maciak says:

    This was hilarious to watch. Can’t wait for more. :)

  69. JoshR says:

    “you can either be a soldier, a techy or a jedi. who the hell is going to not pick jedi”

    the exact reason i ended up playing an adept lol.

    though i was IMMENSELY annoyed at you not hitting the crazy person, the video is firstly and foremostly entertainment, you should definitely have hit him!

  70. Galad says:

    Wow, how did I miss that? Well, it *is* something recent on you blog.

    You guys, or rather, the one who was doing the editing, Josh, was it? might wanna add subtitles for the moments when two or more of you are talking at the same time. It’s kinda hard to figure out what is being said at times..

    Also, I’m just playing it on an XBox these days, and dayuuum, Shepard moves a lot faster on the PC than he does on the XBox :(

    Wait, can he actually SPRINT on the XBox?? I’ll take a look at the controls again but I’m pretty sure I’d have noticed it..

    the “dual-classing” jest near the end and the final Schwarzenegger pun were awesome =P

  71. Revan the Stab-Happy Drunk says:

    I’m very sorry, Shamus. I tried to watch this and enjoy it as much as I absolutely loved DMotR. I just didn’t find the running commentary to be a very insightful parody, or even very funny. 8′( It’s just 3 guys making derisive comments about Mass Effect, a portion of which aren’t entirely accurate.

    I enjoyed your witty satire of Lord of the Rings, but the way you’re critiquing Bioware’s opus just doesn’t rub me as very witty. You’re treating it the way you’d treat a terrible movie like Pearl Harbor or Armageddon. That’s not cool!

    Here’s hoping you work the kinks out for Part Deux!

    1. Randy Johnson says:

      Hey, spread that disappointment around a little bit! Shamus will never be able to live down his DMotR series, but you gotta admit, he was given a gold mine to work with. As one of his co-attempting to be funny people in this, I’d like it if you judged it as a separate entity. Also, this was our Pilot Episode of sorts, we were mostly just trying to prove that the idea was sound, and that we could think of things to say, I personally feel like the series is constantly improving, and by the time episode 6 rolls out, I think alot of people will agree that we have most of the kinks worked out. I didn’t talk during this one very much, so I apologize for my personal lack of funny. Also, the later episodes come in 20-30 minute chunks, so they are easier to swallow and enjoy the nuggets of information/funny we do stumble across, without drowning in our efforts to fill the time with something other than shooting. Also, my response turned into a much longer paragraph than I intended, Shamus’ lack of brevity must be rubbing off on me :S

  72. Toby says:

    Hmm. I don’t mean to be rude, but watching this was almost excruciating at times. I think it’d be better if you all were actually in the same room, because a lot of the time two of you are trying to talk at the same time and it’s not appealing.

    Personally, I would approach these sort of videos in a different way. Instead of saying things in the middle of gameplay, make the video first, then together watch the video and add your commentary as it goes along. (This is how most Achievement Hunter videos are done, I believe.)

    Also, again, I don’t wanna’ seem like a jerk, but you may have wanted to get someone who is a little better at the game to play it. Made me cringe a few times when Josh didn’t understand what was going on.

    1. Dreadjaws says:

      Yup. I remember when the “Level Up” prompt and music showed up on screen and he absolutely ignored it (while I was actually screaming at the screen “Dude! Level Up!”) and then he later opened his customization screen, realized he had leveled up and said “I hate that this game has no ‘Ding’ for level up”.

      It’s very hard to see something like this, comment on it and not sound like a jerk or a condescending asshole, but I can’t help it: don’t blame the game for what you are doing wrong.

  73. ZeroSamurai says:

    Looking over your stuff – You missed a bunch of free stuff (For high Charm/Intim chara’s, anyway) in the shack off to your right in the tutorial part – just before you reach the platform with Nilus on it. Also random sleeping guys gives you a grenade mod, and there is some stuff just past Nilus’s corpse if you go past the fire.

  74. RCN says:

    I had forgotten how realist the game could be. Anderson in particular seemed very life-like at that conversation at some points, almost like a live-action actor. Your character doesn’t seem too good, but that’s because of your plastic preference in the editor. The character I made also impressed me at times looking remarkably life-like.

    But the Salarians and Krogans are the ones that look the best. Heck, they look better than serious sci-fi movies and series have done in the last years with heavy-duty CGI or make-up, with the Turians also looking not too shabby.

    The blue-space-women, however, all look pretty fake. They seem like game characters when everybody around them look photo-realistic.

    This lets play may end convincing myself to get Mass Effect 2 at some point earlier than I expected. I was put off by the fact it has a weaker RPG gameplay customization, but now I remembered how gorgeous the game looks.

  75. Seth Ghatch says:

    As soon as you chose adrian shephard I was like “Where did I hear that before?” Then you mentioned opposing force and I immeadiatly remembered it.

  76. anaphysik says:

    Watching this from the future, and I’m noticing that the past is actually bizarro land. I can honestly not believe that I heard Josh seriously state “Why would I grief an NPC?”

    (There are a number of good funnies, but that particular dramatic irony is just too delicious to handle.)

    (Also, I can only assume that at some point Josh learned to actually hotkey his abilities, rather than simply complain that he hasn’t yet done so….)

  77. Grim says:

    I’m watching this after seeing it posted to reddit. I must admit, I’m confused. You’re doing a multi-person commentary on a single player game? Are they able to see what you’re doing somehow?

Thanks for joining the discussion. Be nice, don't post angry, and enjoy yourself. This is supposed to be fun. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*

You can enclose spoilers in <strike> tags like so:
<strike>Darth Vader is Luke's father!</strike>

You can make things italics like this:
Can you imagine having Darth Vader as your <i>father</i>?

You can make things bold like this:
I'm <b>very</b> glad Darth Vader isn't my father.

You can make links like this:
I'm reading about <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darth_Vader">Darth Vader</a> on Wikipedia!

You can quote someone like this:
Darth Vader said <blockquote>Luke, I am your father.</blockquote>

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *