Thoughts While Playing Mass Effect for Seven Straight Hours
Or: How I Spent My Day Off
Alright! Time to explore uncharted galaxies and expand our understanding of science. Just after this load screen…
I’ll explore after I spend twenty minutes creating the perfect character first. And her twin brother too? Ok, whatever.
So we’ve been asleep for 600 years? What a journey! Everything you know is dead and gone but everything in front of you is new and exciting!
I guess the first foreign world I get to explore is actually the Nexus space station. It’s kind of like the Citadel of the original trilogy but that was at least 700 years ago. And in another galaxy. And by explore I mean talk to literally everyone that has woken from cryo-sleep and try and solve all of their problems.
Run here. Run there. Oh wait, run back there again.
People are protesting at the hydroponics lab! Oh no! I can either talk to the protesters or send in the police. Let’s send in the police. Did I mention I want to explore the galaxy?
Galactic politics. I have all the power in the universe and no one will make a decision without my say so. This form of government seems destined to fail.
Oh finally, a space ship! I can get off world in… a ship that looks oddly similar to the one from 600 years ago. I guess the designers were bored?
Regardless, I finally get to explore the galaxy. Oh god, another cut scene conversation!
Everyone on the ship wants to talk to me. There are emails to answer. Emails! In a video game.
This guy wants to play poker. This one wants me to download a movie. Seriously? This girl wants to get drinks. This one wants to talk about plants. The dinosaur man wants me to help his granddaughter. The lizard man doesn’t like the engine guy. Someone wants me to move a couch. And there’s a stowaway?
Everyone on this ship wants to sleep with me. A thirteen year old boy wrote this game.
This is an “action RPG” and I haven’t used a weapon in three hours.
Talk. Talk. Talk.
Sweet. A new planet. Time for some exploration!
I have to prove I’m able to be trusted. By running around and talking to more people.
Maybe I should just go back into cryo-sleep for another 600 years.
Another hour, still haven’t pulled a trigger. Glad I spent all that time building and configuring weapons.
Finally. I’m on the ground in an open world planet. I can explore! I can drive my dune buggy thing anywhere I want! I can attack the bad guys! I can mine for resources! But before I can do any of that I need to talk to this commander and get permission.
There’s fifteen active missions at the moment, eleven of which are on this planet. I went from having nothing to do to having to much to do.
What time is it? Oh god, I’ve been doing this for seven hours… I really should eat. Or take a shower. Or walk the dog. But I just want to drive this car around and explore!
I grasp the hyperbole of titling an online article, “You’re Not Going to Read This”, but the statement is true. We don’t read, we consume. And when we consume, we are not fully comprehending information. I have always enjoyed reading. Diving into a great story is like entering another world and exploring all that it…
Who are you? Hey there! I’m Eric Smith. I’m a literary agent with P.S. Literary and an author of Young Adult books. I’m based out of Philadelphia but grew up in Elizabeth, New Jersey. In my agent life, I work on a bit of everything, but as an author, I’m mostly in the YA space. What…