Which makes it all the more difficult to deal with the fact that Mass
Effect 2 is a suicide mission. Shepard is instructed by the Cerberus
leader, the shadowy Illusive Man, to assemble a team to travel through a
mysterious Mass Relay (see: giant space portal) that might hold the
answer to preventing the Reaper invasion.
There’s no knowing if you’re
going to come back – hell, every indication is that you won’t – so
Shepard is sent around the galaxy to collect the best team possible, and
to convince them to potentially throw their lives away on a giant evil
that most people don’t believe is actually coming.
Cue the montage.
different team members made for an incredibly memorable experience.
Each character was given two massive missions to flesh them out,
creating some of the most memorable characters in gaming. From the damaged-goods psychic warrior to the
misunderstood assassin, each character earned a place in our hearts,
which made the ending all the more powerful and horrific.
ending – oh god, that ending. Mass Effect 2’s conclusion is as brutal
and personal as we’ve ever experienced. The promise of Shepard’s endgame
being a “suicide mission” was not, in any way, undersold, and the final
hour or so could change completely depending on the preparation and
choices of the player. Go in without upgraded shields and the Normandy
might take so much damage during the initial approach that a crewmember
could die before the suicide mission even begins. Send the wrong
character back to help escort survivors and it might be the last time
you ever see them.
In our initial trek through the game nearly
our entire squad died during the mission, and each death hit us like a
punch to the gut. We knew, without fail, that anytime we were asked to
send someone to do something, there was a good chance that they’d never
come back. We were holding back the tears as Jack, Miranda, Garrus, and
other squad mates we'd fallen in love with were mowed down by reaper attacks. It was our fault,
we were to blame, and no game had ever, ever made us feel that way
Though some have issues with the sequel, Mass Effect 2
stands represents near-perfection in the genre. The improvements to the
combat, the robust, interesting story, and the absurdly powerful ending
made for one of the most memorable gaming experiences we’ve ever had,
and one that completely deserves its spot on our 100 best games of all time.
"Why _____ is one of the best games ever made" is a weekly feature that goes through GamesRadar's list of the 100 best games of all time and highlights different titles, explaining why they're on the list, what makes them so amazing, and why we love them so much.