‘Everything’ & More ‘Mass Effect: Andromeda’

Can a video game do philosophy? Everything in David OReilly’s “Everything” is playable, to try to convey the perspective of, well, everything. Our review.

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“Psychonauts,” just ’cause

SHOW NOTES:

Ian Bogost’s review of “Everything” in the Atlantic

Quantic Foundry’s gamer motivation profile

 

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2 Comments

  1. Anton EAgo
    June 27, 2017

    This episode was my first time listening to your podcast, and I have to say — I really love the idea and apparent direction of the show.

    That being said, if this episode is any indication of the rest of the show, it’s a little off-putting how strongly (and in this case, negatively) your opinion of the game is formed without having even come close to completing it.

    I’ve played through this and the other mass effects and agree with most (if not all) of the points you both made about this and all previous iterations of the games; but that being said, I was significantly underwhelmed with the absence of any balance in the conversation. For example, yes, Andromeda did not have amazing writing, but it was far from the disaster that it was so enthusiastically painted as by one of you through a significant portion of the show. This goes for the overall plot as well as other aspects such as character development. For proof of argument, all you need to do is spend any short period of time listening to the banter between the Krogan and Turian on your team. Similarly, the humor exhibited in the strong character-building emails that Drack sends to you (e.g. One where he sends a dozen low-res picture attachments of guns in an effort to comfort you post the tragic loss early on in the game) is very apparent during the first couple of hours of playthrough.

    Again, this is far from my favorite iteration of Mass Effect, but the combat system was one of the most fluid I’ve experienced in ME so far (for comparison, spool up a back to back playthrough of combat in ME:A and ME:2). Additionally, there was no mention of how this is the first time (ever in the series) that we’re privileged with a glimpse of what it must’ve been like to observe the ultimate power of Shepard in battle from a teammate’s perspective (during the first major engagement vs the Khett when accompanying Alec Ryder on your assault on the base).

    Essentially, I’m attempting to point out how much potential there is for this show if 1) a balanced discussion replaces the unsubstantiated and long, opinionated rants (either negative OR positive), 2) the discussion is based on an actual complete (or even nearly complete) playthrough as opposed to a mere couple hours, and 3) new, fresh perspectives or points are made and introduced into the show (instead of, as was the case with this episode, points that had already been discussed, re-discussed, and beaten to death at length by a broad spectrum of other gaming forums, memes, and articles. E.g. Facial animations). In short: give your listeners a distinct reason to listen to you. And give them a reason, quite frankly, to give a damn; because I don’t think I’m alone when I say the last thing I want from a gaming podcast is another negative “circle-jerk” about everything that sucks (or rocks) about a game that I’ve already heard about a thousand times over.

    Good luck guys. I want to love this podcast. I really do. And I think you both have the potential to carve out a place and name for yourselves if you put in the effort.

    Reply
  2. Ann
    July 10, 2017

    Very well put, Anton. I agree with everything you said – particularly that the very negative reviews were based on very little of the game. It does get a lot more interesting the further you go, at least in my experience. I enjoy the game. I’m new to Mass Effect so maybe that it’s fresh to me and I’m not comparing it to past games makes a difference.

    Reply

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