I’m about 12 hours into the game and stuck on Feros while I try to take out the Thorian. I like the gameplay, but it’s unforgiving. I’ve died quite a few times. That actually makes the game more addictive, because of the difficulty. Easy games are boring games.
What’s most impressive about Mass Effect is the amount of work that went into the creation of the setting. It’s a really nice space-opera-esque setting that works really well. Humanity has just joined the galactic civilization, and it’s a dangerous galaxy out there. AI research is illegal and there are a lot of baddies out there.
My roommate remarked that the lighting was more dramatic, but the textures were a lot less beautiful than in Fallout 3. I ten to agree. It’s still a pretty game.