Mass Effect 2 is a real adventure.
Laura says: I loved, loved, loved this game. I felt like I was reading a relatively entertaining sci-fi novel with a good plot despite somewhat strained writing at times. I actually got into it watching Damon choose renegade options and thinking, "Why? The other one would have been so much better!"
The whole choose-your-own-adventure aspect (RPG? Is that what they're calling it these days?) is neat. I love the idea of being a hero or a badass. (Damon says: I prefer to live in the moment. If the guy is a jerk, punch him in the face. If it's a little kid, cut him a break.) (Laura says: Yeah, but you did not, in fact, cut the kid a break!) In fact, I really liked how your decisions from the first game affect the second so much that after beating the second with the default settings I went back and played the first again so that I could load a character who had made different (paragon) choices. And now I am playing the first again so I can have a character who made renegade choices.
The dialog is good. Sometimes. Sometimes the dialog is cringe-worthy. Where was QA for all the male love interests? Seth Green is hilarious. Ah, Joker. (Damon says: Don't forget that Caprica Six plays the very sexy ship!)
Damon says: I like that the descriptions of future technology are based in reality. For instance, hacking machines and doors is cool because having you rewire schematics and recompile code to bypass firewalls is semi-realistic and so very much better than Simon Says.
The story line is quite good. I found the missions to be fast paced, creative, and less linear than in the original. In addition, there were no annoying boss battles (except that the last one, which was a little weak).
The graphics and audio are good, except when loading a saved game in the middle of a cut scene. In that case the dialog is way too quiet for the first several words.
Some things disappointed me:
I managed to put together a wireless accelerometer the other night using my two new XBees, an Arduino XBee shield, an XBee Explorer USB, an ADXL330, and some Python. I struggled a bit with some of it, so here's what I learned: First, a parts list. XBee 2mW Series 2.5 Chip Antenna Arduino XBee (with XBee Series 2.5 module) XBee Explorer USB ADXL330 I'm not sure exactly what the specs are on the XBee that comes with the Arduino shield. But, it is definitely a series 2.5. The first thing to do is to configure and upgrade the firmware on your XBees. To do that, you'll need X-CTU (for the firmware upgrade at least, but it's also nice for configuration) which, unfortunately, is only available for Windows. But, it works fine from VMware. First up, the XBee we'll hook up to the computer to read incoming data from the accelerometer: Plug one of the XBees into the Explorer (it's also possible to do this from the Arduino shield by shifting the two XBee/USB jumpers to U