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Mass Effect 3: Leviathan Review Round-up
Review - posted by Crooked Bee on Fri 31 August 2012, 12:48:42Tags: BioWare; Mass Effect 3; Mass Effect 3: Leviathan
The recently released Leviathan DLC for Mass Effect 3 has seen a fair number of reviews appear already. The DLC "allows players to discover more about the origins of the Reapers as they race across the galaxy to unravel the mystery that surrounds the fabled Leviathan, a rogue reaper who has indoctrinated a mining colony." To start off, Gamespy believes the DLC is solid yet a bit underwhelming, story focus-wise, which leads to the 6/10 rating:
ComputerAndVideoGames.com argues the DLC has been released "too late":
"Leviathans are vital to the war effort!", remarks Sheppard. Well, no. You already won. There's an air of inconsequentiality to the whole thing, a bit like Titanic in space.
Eurogamer praises Leviathan as "a worthwhile chapter of lore within the Mass Effect canon", rating it 7/10 and commending the new environments and quests while criticizing the combat objectives:
Within minutes, the traditional pattern of "meet quest giver, run off to mission" is abruptly altered. Shepard is wrapped up in a detective operation, scouring the environment L.A. Noire-style for pointers as to what to do next. There are fan-pleasing references and nods to old Mass Effect plots aplenty, as well as lots of time spent with EDI, one of the surprise highlights of Mass Effect 3.
[...] The locations are also real stars of this add-on, however briefly they are visited. Corridor sequences are wisely kept to a minimum as the game's trio of planetary excursions take you on a whistle-stop tour around the Galaxy Map. There's a Dead Space-style creepy mining colony with a chilling atmosphere and some truly unnerving moments. Then there's a precarious, rusted settlement left clinging to a giant cliff face, mid-Reaper attack. And there's a gorgeous ocean world, whose undulating waters rock the creaking floor beneath you.
Gameplay innovations are not limited to the CSI-style investigations in the Citadel lab. Leviathan takes players underwater for the first time in a brief section of aquatic exploration whose looks are reminiscent of BioShock 2's sojourns outside Rapture. Less impressive are the combat objectives borrowed from Mass Effect 3's recent multiplayer expansions. One section sees Shepard having to escort a drone around the battlefield (introduced in the Earth multiplayer DLC). Another sees you lugging packages from one area to another (introduced in Rebellion and referred to by players as the "pizza delivery" round).
Finally, Kotaku admires the DLC's visuals and atmosphere, but criticizes the fact that Leviathan has no impact on the overall story arch, as well as that it ignores "the Commander's relationships with her allies":
Perhaps in the future we could play a Mass Effect horror game, which Leviathan almost turns into, during a creepy sequence set in the second-weirdest space-mining facility ever seen in an EA-published game.
[...] Leviathan nevertheless conveys the sensation that Shepard's time is up. Her adventure had its grand finale in Mass Effect 3, which leaves this mid-mission expansion feeling like watching a very long deleted scene. There are no great secrets to be learned about Shepard.
Shepard's time is up, folks. But then what is next for the series?