Upon completion of this DLC, I felt only one feeling, relief. This was the sending off that the Commander deserved. Now, that being said, I am still in the minority when it comes to discussing the ending of the Mass Effect Trilogy and I believe that they were a bit hard done by the reaction received. However, improvements could have been made and Citadel rightfully closes the chapter on one of the greatest gaming protagonists in history.
Firstly, let me give you a brief overview of what takes place. You are called back to the Citadel for shore leave by Admiral Anderson who then gifts you his swanky apartment in a fancy distract of the Citadel. This area has a casino, a huge arcade, a war simulator and a huge loft that Shepard can now call home. You’re then contacted by Joker who invites you to a fancy Japanese restaurant where someone attempts to assassinate you. You spend the rest of the game time finding the culprit, which is a clever twist, and making sure he or she is brought to justice.
Now, here’s where the value of this DLC comes to play. Every character you didn’t let die throughout the trilogy is involved in some capacity. Some come for the mission and while others only come for the after party.
You start by exploring your new home which has several data pads hanging around for Anderson’s biography. There’s a lot of really cool stories in there and any fan of the game will find value in listening to each one. The actual mission is an enjoyable one and the variety of game play is similar to Mass Effect 3.There’s some beautiful cinematics, a lot of familiar shooting and a break in between to do some detective work which was similar to a mission in the original game. However, the real fun was in one part of the mission where Shepard brings the whole team along. You choose two members to accompany you while the rest of the team follows along over top and protects you from above. It was a lot of fun to have the whole team together, arguing about who was the best shot while tearing down waves of mercenaries. The crew was constantly throwing hilarious one liners at each and I found that this DLC packed in more humor than any of the other games combined, as I found myself laughing aloud several times. Even Shepard threw in a few memorable lines which I won’t spoil for you here.
After the mission, Shepard shares an intimate moment with each of them along with a shared group moment as well. The emotional connection shared between these characters is the rightful farewell that we deserved to experience between Shepard and his crew. I spent a couple of hours meeting with each member privately, sometimes twice and then meeting them again at a party at Shepard’s place. You had the power to control the type of party you wanted, from a calm soiree to a drunken dance party.As a huge fan of this game, who took the decisions I made very seriously, it was nice to see the reaction from the crew and from my lady (I ended up with Miranda).
Apart from the mission and the after party there is still more to discover within this area of the Citadel. There is a casino where you can earn credits for Shepard by playing some common games like roulette or fancy space ones as well. There’s an arcade where you can spend credits on a few fun mini-games. The best thing to discover in this new area is a simulator where you can choose your crew, weapons, enemies, location and handicaps as you fight through wave after wave of enemies. For those who aren’t interested in playing online but still want to get in some more time with Mass Effect 3, this is the ideal way to do it. Every time you complete a wave, you receive points and can use them to unlock different things.
All in all, this was the DLC that I enjoyed the most in the entire series. It was fun, hilarious and emotionally rewarding. You felt as though Shepard enjoyed one last moment before he inevitably went on to face the Reapers. As a HUGE fan of this series, I applaud Bioware for realizing that the current ending lacked the emotional response that we had been given the rest of the series. It is priced highly at $15, so any casual fan of the game may not see the incentive to purchasing it. However, there’s about 4 hours of story based gameplay here, between the mission and after-party, if you do every little thing. That is in addition to the numerous hours you can spend in the simulator. I would definitely recommend this purchase to any of the true Commander Shepard’s out there… Guy or Girl.
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