Monday, March 29, 2010

ME2, pt.10: Mining for Distraction

When not blowing up stuff and talking, Mass Effect wants you to explore the vastness of space. In ME1, this meant driving a rover around oft-barren planets searching for minerals, and occasionally bumping into side missions. In ME2, it means blindly scanning the surface of planets searching for minerals, and occasionally bumping into side missions. Both systems just lag.

Blind scanning for signals is intensely boring no matter how you slice it, and asking players to spend time in your game bored does little in itself to convey the vastness of space or to keep me emotionally invested in goings on. That they can't even throw in a bejeweled game to find stuff just to keep me entertained is baffling. If the act is so monotonous, it should at least be fast. I wouldn't mind it nearly as much if there was always a signal above "0" on my scanner, so I could "hot/cold" my way to minerals much faster. That, and speed up the scanner. Ugh.

It's just so undercooked, and given this was a second shot at the system, I have to wonder why.


  1. so TRUE, you make me laugh...

  2. I actually fell asleep scanning a planet.

  3. Bless bioware for actually "scanning" the interwebs after the first game for reviews and criticisms, hopefully they've come by similar reviews of the scanning system and either improve or get rid of it. Just being able to spin the planet around faster would have helped a hell of a lot and not contributed fake hours to the gameplay

  4. Haha. Speaking of falling asleep scanning, it seems apropos to bring up falling asleep whilst running in WoW. I died far too many times doing that, and hated falling asleep while running back to retrieve my corpse.

    I also hope BioWare addresses it in ME3, although people complained about how scanning and collecting minerals in ME1 was interesting already.