Mass Effect 3 demo impresses

The battle for Earth is about to begin when one of the year’s most anticipated video games, “Mass Effect 3,” hits store shelves March 6.

To help ease the wait, a demo was released Feb. 14 on Xbox Live and Playstation Network.

The “Mass Effect” series is a science fiction story from space. Human beings can travel the galaxy at hyper speed for the first time, thanks to a device known as the Mass Effect Relay. Players take control of the game’s main character, Commander Shepard, and his fleet as they try to save the galaxy from various dangers including terrorist plots and alien harvesting.

In “Mass Effect 3″ though, Shepard must defend Earth from an alien invasion with the odds against him.

BioWare, the game’s developer, has included a brief sample of the game’s campaign mode and the multiplayer mode in the demo.

Fans of previous “Mass Effect” games should feel right at home. Shepard controls similarly to the way he did in “Mass Effect 2.”

But this time the game plays a little more smoothly. The shooting mechanics feel more polished, allowing players to have even more command placing their shots.

Changes have also been made to the way the player chooses to experience the game.

Before the demo starts, players are given the option to play the game three different ways: action, RPG and story.

The action experience gives the player no control of Shepard’s dialogue options throughout the demo, giving it more action-packed play. All of the cut scenes have pre-rendered choices already made for the player.

The story feature gives players control of Shepard’s responses, but it makes the game’s combat much easier, which makes it harder to die.

The RPG experience plays like the previous “Mass Effect” games, giving players full control of Shepard’s dialogue and making combat in the game more of a challenge.

These features help give the game more universal appeal, while at the same time giving fans of the series the same experience from previous games. All of this is topped off by the conclusion to the “Mass Effect” story.

The demo doesn’t spoil anything significant to the game’s story, but gives the player similar emotional experiences seen with the predecessors.

It plays similarly to cooperative modes in other games such as firefight in “Halo: Reach” and Horde in “Gears of War 3.”

The player is given a choice of weapon load out, character appearance and powers/abilities before heading into the game. Waves of computer-generated enemies attack all at once as soon as the match begins, and players have to work together to take them out.

The demo to “Mass Effect 3” impresses and gives fans of the series hope that it will continue its trend of emotional storytelling and good gameplay.

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