Mass Effect Legendary Edition’s release date is just a day away, meaning your next meet-up with Wrex, Tali, and Garrus could be tomorrow. I’m sure as you prepare for the occasion, you’re wondering how BioWare’s remaster of its beloved trilogy shaped up. Let’s just say, pretty damn good so far!
Since Monday evening, I’ve been playing Mass Effect Legendary Edition, scoping out as much as possible for review. I’ve completed the first game of the trilogy (which has the most substantial improvements), but haven’t had the opportunity to experience as much of Mass Effect 2 or 3. Until I see more of both games, I’m not ready to deliver a review score.
Here’s what I’ll say for now: Mass Effect Legendary has impressed me. The most noticeable improvements are to the first game, which includes the Mako controls, shooting mechanics, and more detailed environments. These all make a positive difference. For instance, the Mako now steers better and moves faster. You no longer feel like you’re controlling chaos and hoping for the best. I loved using my boosts to get out of difficult situations. As for the shooting controls, it feels more like a ME2’s third-person shooter gameplay as opposed to the strictly RPG mechanics of the original game. I’ll admit, I was dreading going back to the first entry (it’s a teenager!), and these enhancements made me enjoy and appreciate it even more.
Mass Effect 1 plays smoother, but the enhanced visuals should really catch your eye. The enemies and different alien species look noticeably better, and the extra hint of detail to environments makes them a joy to explore. The human faces are the only thing that looks off, and it doesn’t help that the characters’ mouths don’t sync up with their words. That being said, when I visited memorable places like Virmire and Eden Prime, I saw a new beauty to them, thanks to little touches like adding particle effects, fog, and extra vegetation that sell the personality of each locale. There’s also a photo mode, so you can really take in the sights and your experience.
Even all these years later, Commander Shepard is a powerful force that lives up to their iconic status, and the trilogy is still captivating and worth your time. You won’t forget these are older games while you play, but this remaster makes the first game much more approachable. That’s the best way to sum up my journey to this point. If you were looking forward to the remaster or wanting an easy one-stop-shop to experience Shepard’s story, I think it’s a safe bet to pick this one up.
We’ll have a more complete breakdown of Legendary’s strengths and weaknesses in our review, coming soon!
In the meantime, watch our latest New Gameplay Today to see Legendary Edition in action. You can also check out our cover story hub to hear from Legendary’s developers and learn more about the little changes that make a big difference.