DEVELOPER DIARY | X360, PC Sunday, July 12, 2009 | 4:11 AM

Mass Effect 2, first developer diary

Mass Effect 2, first developer diary

Electronic Arts and Bioware release this first developer diary of Mass Effect 2. It brings together the two gameplay sequences that we were the first to show you during E3, along with some new excerpts and the inevitable commentaries from the team. Sorry for the bad quality of the file, we haven't found anything better. Mass Effect 2 will be out this winter on Xbox 360 and PC only.

Deveveloper diary #1
Download: WMV | MP4 | AVI

All comments

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Commented on 2009-07-12 04:47:53
As much as I can never forgive the horrible fan-boyism that plagued the reviews of Mass Effect (and in some ways wished this trilogy burned in hell because of it) ME2 is, hopefully, going to actually provide an experience that can live up to the claims brought forth by ME1 reviewers.

Let's just hope this time our big, bad arch-nemesis doesn't decide to tell us his exact plan and exactly how to stop said plan half-way through the main story.
Commented on 2009-07-12 05:01:34
Can't wait. I hate EA, but I love Bioware.
Commented on 2009-07-12 05:24:55
*foams at mouth*
Commented on 2009-07-12 06:59:40 In reply to buzzhonky
Posted by buzzhonky
As much as I can never forgive the horrible fan-boyism that plagued the reviews of Mass Effect (and in some ways wished this trilogy burned in hell because of it) ME2 is, hopefully, going to actually provide an experience that can live up to the claims brought forth by ME1 reviewers.

Let's just hope this time our big, bad arch-nemesis doesn't decide to tell us his exact plan and exactly how to stop said plan half-way through the main story.
Didnt like ME1 then? Dont think this game will change your mind then :P
And whats wrong with fanboyism? It gets old to hate everything just for the sake of hating after a while. When a game as good as Mass Effect gets released, there really isnt anything else to do than to jump in to the fanboy soup and just soak up the awesomeness of the game.

There's a time for being cynical and critical of everything, and a time for just enjoying the quality of certain rare games. There's no point in hating a game just because alot of other people love it lol.
Commented on 2009-07-12 08:10:52 In reply to buzzhonky
Baleur is right, if you hated it that much and felt that the entire trilogy should have burned in hell based on the the performance of ME1, then it's highly doubtful that you're going to enjoy the 2nd installment.
Commented on 2009-07-12 09:07:21
This is everything and more that i wanted from a sequel. I. Cant. Wait. Did i hear correctly that we can choose where to land on a planet, or am i inventing things. Combat looks amazing. Also, HOW MANY FRIGGIN SYSTEMS WERE ON THAT MAP!? It looked like they opened up the entire other side of the milkyway! I wonder if they are having problems fitting all these Clusters, Systems, and planets on a DVD?
Commented on 2009-07-12 10:03:30
They can put it on multiple DVDs.Game looks very good....
Commented on 2009-07-12 11:07:02
My most anticipated game of the decade. Nuff said.
Commented on 2009-07-12 13:12:03
awesome 360 footage. Looks like they're doing alot of what they took out of the first game - interrupting conversations with actions, squad placement.. all shown in the original E3 demo of the first.

This game cant come soon enough.
Commented on 2009-07-12 13:17:32
Just AMAZING!! my GOTY confirmed.
Commented on 2009-07-12 13:39:14
Isn't Mass Effect 2 due spring of 2010 (not winter this year)?
Commented on 2009-07-12 16:35:18
Okay, my GO2010 confirmed.
Commented on 2009-07-12 16:54:44
The first game was great with some minor problems, I can see this one being a true gem. Looks like ME fans have a LOT to look forward to. Just a rental for me, but it will be a great one I'm sure. Too many good games in 2010 already. Where to find the time...
Commented on 2009-07-12 17:27:27
no way am I a watching this or anything else related to Mass Effect. MEDIA BLACKOUT FTW!
Commented on 2009-07-12 19:12:19
Mass Effect 1 was given too many passes by critics; the same critics that nit-pick to death other games that have "easily tolerable flaws." ME fawning (or any fawning for that matter) is not good for the idea of game reviews. Frankly, the entire concept of game reviews are limited by the inevitable "fun factor" that is 100% subjective to individuals (but that's a different tangent).

Back on my thoughts on Mass Effect. The cut combat, dialogue, and exploration systems were what I really took issue with. The gameplay was run-and-gun retard-o easy, dialogue began to become extremely trite and superficial about midway through the game (how many times can the council races condescendingly remark that humans are inferior in one sentence?), and the entire concept of "exploration" was completely and utterly lost in the final product ("Scan" "You receive medallion!"). And then the horrible story that I believe in one review said "changes Sci-Fi forever." (/barf)

That being said, I believe the non-zero-sum "alignment" meters were a step in the right direction towards pragmatism in story development: treating situations how they would best suit the character, visuals were stunning, and the immersion was captured very well.

Also, from this dev diary I can see that combat, dialogue, and exploration are taking center stage in their minds as what was bad with ME so in that respect I am *very* excited to see what they do. However, I will not get my hopes up just to be let down so tremendously again. And I swear if I'm fighting sentient robots who tell me their master plan for universal damnation half way through the story I'm burning someone's lawn in my neighborhood. You've been warned, BioWare!

Anway, /offsoapbox! :)
Commented on 2009-07-12 21:00:33
Must of been playing a different game Buzzhonky.

If you want a "run and gun" game out of it you get a run and gun game out of it. If you want a more strategic game out of it then you get such. - different classes offer different results.

Likewise, different actions offer different conversational results.

I agree that the exploration was poor.. having a solar system full of nothing whilst maybe realistic, offered little to the player..and was a far cry from the idea that we could fly to anywhere, land, and explore.
Hopefully the planets that are filled are filled with more than sand and one bunker this time round.

The story though.. to call it horrible you obviously werent paying attention. The storys very deep - deep enough to allow room for a trilogy to be based around it. It's effectively all about God.
Commented on 2009-07-12 21:21:42
Mass Effect has to be the best game i have played this generation, and Mass Effect 2 looks to be taking its crown.
Commented on 2009-07-12 22:03:02
I played my first character as a soldier, I admit. However, my second, on a harder difficulty, was a pure biotic. I wasn't expecting Wrex to clear an entire zone before I could pull off a single lift, ffs. It was run and gun when I was ARing everything to bits and pieces and it was run and gun when I was trying to be more "strategic" but ended up not being able to get any ground-breaking moves off before Wrex and crew demolished every living organism from here to kingdom cum.

If you had to think "strategically" for anything other than your first couple of tries at Berenzia then you fail at video games...really, really bad. By "fail at video games" I mean you can't optimize your squad's skill ladders, you can't properly assign correct targets during combat, you decide to "lolet Wrex get shot in the head," etc. You're right though, if I wanted a painfully ridiculous convoluted combat system where nothing dies for 40 minutes while I "strategically" set up my tech and biotics for every 2-3 person skirmish I face then it wouldn't be a run and gun; it will be a nice way to knock yourself out for the night, though.

I got the tactician achievement first play through (on my soldier) and I have to be honest, I ran and gunned with Wrex charging + rampaging everything to death while I barely had to crack off a few rounds. During boss fights I just told him to attack the boss while I took a nap and I came back into the next scene ready for my big close-up!

So, it was a very run and gun game. If you struggled with understanding how to utilize your squad or control focus targets then I might be able to see how it was a "strategic" shooter/RPG.

The story can be dissolved into one word: racism. Council hates humans, humans don't trust council races, Saren hates humanity (collective of all races), Sovereign thinks he can play god and discriminate against the races' "evolutionary process" (read: cleansing; i.e. Hitler; i.e. racism), and on and on and on. Every time I heard a main-plot conversation it was about hate/racism.

And like I said before, Sovereign then comes out of nowhere and says, "What's up Sheppard? We're gonna attack the Citadel at 3:00 pm on Saturday and we'll be comin in from vector niner three zero. Please don't have any defenses up around the central spire cause that is where I'll have to tap in to make the Citadel a big jumpgate thingy so the rest of my boys can come in and clean up. Also, don't tell anyone else please, I would hate if our master plan that we've been recycling millennia after millennia somehow was thwarted cause I just told you all this. Peace, cya saturday!"

"-_- No excuse for pathetic writing like that. Honestly, I have to think they had all these great ideas for the ending (the Saren suicide, the council decision, etc.) but had *no idea* how to get there so they just bullied it through. That's quite a big gaping hole in Sovereign's plan and went completely untouched by reviewers, again, hailing the story as "remarkable" and "changing Sci-Fi forever!" and on and on ad nauseam.

Please offer support for your argument that the game's main theme was effectively all about God. I'm interested in hearing what you got out of the narrative.
Commented on 2009-07-12 22:48:13
My GOTY confirmed.

ME1 story/gameplay and graphics were excellent and my GOTY for '07, this has just blown it out of the water!! 2010 cant come soon enough.
Commented on 2009-07-12 22:51:52
Maybe you need chill the fuck out buzz. Maybe then you can appreciate a good game without performing an autopsy on it. Geez...
Commented on 2009-07-13 01:38:25
Buzz - Wow, I didn't realize how easily people can misinterpret stories. I guess this is something along the lines of people coming out of Borat laughing at the jew jokes, failing to realize the depth behind the movie. if anything the game goes against prejudice and racism. You are after all commander of a group of soldiers all from different backgrounds and races fighting all for the same cause to save the Universe. I don't really see the racism in that.
Oh and using a sniper as actually really fun in this games. Wrex really can't do much from a dozen meters away.
Commented on 2009-07-13 03:23:03 In reply to buzzhonky
Posted by buzzhonky
Also, from this dev diary I can see that combat, dialogue, and exploration are taking center stage in their minds as what was bad with ME so in that respect I am *very* excited to see what they do. However, I will not get my hopes up just to be let down so tremendously again. And I swear if I'm fighting sentient robots who tell me their master plan for universal damnation half way through the story I'm burning someone's lawn in my neighborhood. You've been warned, BioWare!

Anway, /offsoapbox! :)
Hmmmm.......So you DID like the game! I also see that I misread your "burn in hell" as hate for ME, but I certainly couldn't imagine such passion filled commentaries coming from someone who actually hated the game. It just sounds like your expectations were dashed.
Commented on 2009-07-13 03:50:11
Dashed, trampled, murdered! You name it! =P

Also, I'm sorry I've polluted this board with my rants. I've been doing nothing but writing 1000+ word essays for my two summer classes recently and I tend to feel it a necessity to elaborate and give strong evidence for every point rather than just joke around on a game site! <3

Peace and love.
Commented on 2009-07-13 06:00:00
Man, i really dug the story in ME, i liked the characters a lot, found them to be quite interesting, could not wait to back from the missions and continue asking about their past etc.

I mean ****SPOILERS- finding out that Ashely is a big ol' racist was a huuuge turn-off yet kinda funny at the same time, needless to say, she had to go :/ SPOILERS***

It makes me glad that Bioware seems to be really focused on making the sequel that much better technically and gameplay wise, really listening to the feedback.
Commented on 2009-07-13 17:21:10 In reply to buzzhonky
Posted by buzzhonky
Dashed, trampled, murdered! You name it! =P
And yet you played through it multiple times. hmmm... I'd advise you to stay away from the sequel then. They're staying pretty close to the same formula, just making the usual "sequel improvements". If you hated the first one so much then you're probably not going to like the second part of the series either.

I loved the first one and can't wait for this, especially since it's the "dark chapter" as the dev said. Great way to start off 2010!
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