Monday, February 6, 2012

Mass Effect Universe

Mass Effect: Revelation
Since this blog is supposed to be about all things Mass Effect, I think for this post I’ll talk about something other than the video games.  What, there are other Mass Effect things besides the video games???  Yes there are!
Have you ever read any of the Mass Effect books?  I’ve only read one.  I read Mass Effect: Revelation some time ago.  Since then, another three books have been released.  Mass Effect: Revelation is a prequel to the original Mass Effect video game.
This book provides a great deal of background information about Mass Effect in general and specifically the characters David Anderson and Saren Arterius.  Additionally there is much to learn about the Citadel, Council, races, and theory of mass effect fields etc.  I do feel that reading this book helps to make playing the Mass Effect video games more fun because you have more information about the characters, locations and technologies and that gives you a greater connection to your overall game experience.
If you enjoy Mass Effect and are interested in diving a little deeper into the Mass Effect Universe I recommend that you read Mass Effect: Revelation or one of the other Mass Effect books.  When I decide to read a series of books like this I always start with the first book and go from there.
I enjoyed reading Mass Effect: Revelation and do recommend it to anybody interested in Mass Effect.  Although I felt that Revelation was fun to read as entertainment, I doubt Revelation or the other Mass Effect books won any high-end literary prizes.  But then again that's not their purpose.
Star Trek: Destiny
Halo: Flood
I feel that they are on par with any number of similar genre franchise books such as the Star Trek or Halo series of science fiction books.  The Star Trek books were a spin off of the original and subsequent television shows.  The Halo series of books owes their success to the Halo video games and both provide a similar blueprint for Mass Effect books to follow. 
There is certainly enough content in the Mass Effect Universe to sustain the production of these type books.  It would certainly be hard to catch up to Star Trek in the number of books released but Mass Effect can match the quality of the story lines and quality of the writing.  Perhaps EA/Bioware or Del Rey Books should try to publish one or two Mass Effect books a year?  If they were to allow wide variety of authors to submit books such as the Star Trek series it wouldn’t be difficult to produce one or two books a year.  Additionally by allowing other authors to write for Mass Effect they would perhaps give some unknown writers a chance at being discovered, as well getting new characters, stories and ideas that they could draw upon for future video games.
Yes, I think there will be a fourth Mass Effect video game in the future.  It won’t include Commander Shepard as EA/Bioware has said with certainty that this is the end of Commander Shepard’s story.  Who’s to say there aren’t other protagonists and antagonists worthy of a new Mass Effect video game after Commander Shepard?
As for other books, I’m currently about to finish the Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson and highly recommend George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series.  Seriously, George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire is one of the best series of books I’ve ever read.  Once you get all the characters straight its awesome.  Pulse you can watch it on the new HBO series Game of Thrones.
The Mass Effect books are available in the iTunes store for iPad so perhaps Mass Effect: Ascension is next on my "to read" list.  So if it is on the iTunes I'm sure you can get it electronically for a Kindle or a Nook also.  If you're old school you can get it in paper back!
Sorry no video with this post.  I didn’t think that a video of a book or me reading would have any entertainment value!!!!  lol

Almost immediately after this post I came across stories about mistakes in the fourth Mass Effect book, Mass Effect: Deception.  There is one link but you can find many other links to similar stories with a quick search online.  It seems EA/BioWare/Del Ray books hired Mr. William C. Dietz, a professional writer with a significant resume of science fiction books, to write this book instead of using Drew Karpyshyn.  Mr. Karpyshyn is a Mass Effect insider and author of the first three Mass Effect books.  Seems the new Mass Effect author may not have researched the Mass Effect universe in depth.  Fans noted so many errors that they started posting the errors online and asking EA/BioWare/Del Ray to fix the errors.  You can see the document here.

Score one for the fans and EA/BioWare/Del Ray as they did the right thing and have recalled the book and promised to correct the errors and re-issue the book.  If you have one hold on to it as it may be a collectors item some day.

BioWare Community chief Chris Priestly posted a message on their official forums responding to complaints of fans:  "The teams at Del Rey and BioWare would like to extend our sincerest apologies to the Mass Effect fans for any errors and oversights made in the recent novel Mass Effect: Deception. We are currently working on a number of changes that will appear in future editions of the novel."

In spite of this gaff I still recommend the books for fans of Mass Effect who want know more about the characters, politics, technology of Mass Effect.  If you're a starving writer perhaps you should submit a novel.  Just be sure that your writing doesn't contradict Mass Effect lore and other factoids from previous video games, books and comics etc!

No comments:

Post a Comment