Saved the galaxy a third time. What now?
August 8, 2012 1:37 PM   Subscribe

Finished ME3. What should I play now?

So I've played a couple of runthroughs of Mass Effect 3 and quite enjoyed it (although not as much as the previous two). I may do another runthrough, and play the new DLC as it comes out, but there is still plenty of summer left. What is my next game?

Special snowflake details- I'm looking for something with similar gameplay and story elements- strong RPG elements and campaign mode, but with action-y combat mechanics. I'm not especially interested in online play, either co-op or multiplayer, and prefer compelling stories to online competition. A key for me is a high level of character customization (stats and appearance).

In the past, I have been a big fan of the Mass Effect games (and old-school Jade Empire), but I have also enjoyed things like Portal, BioShock, Katamari, Star Wars Battlefront, and the Scott Pilgrim 8-bit game. Giant robots are also good, and while I don't really get jRPGs, I could possibly be sold on one. I was not a fan of the Fable games.

I play mostly on XBox 360, but I also have a PS3.
posted by TheWhiteSkull to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (18 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Have you played Knights of the Old Republic? The first one is a modern classic, the second one is a piece of crap (at least as-released, perhaps the mod community has fixed it by now.)

Also, you may enjoy Fallout 3 and/or Fallout: New Vegas,
posted by griphus at 1:41 PM on August 8, 2012 [3 favorites]

(Oh, re: KoTOR, the Xbox version is backwards-compatible on the 360.)
posted by griphus at 1:41 PM on August 8, 2012

I have heard that Binary Domain is really fun, though I have not played it myself.

What about Deus Ex: Human Revolution or Alpha Protocol? The gameplay on the latter is really rough but it rewards multiple playthroughs and the amount of different endings is everything that ME3 was not.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 2:05 PM on August 8, 2012

Dragon Age: Origins is pretty great and in a similar vein. I didn't like DA2, however, as the gameplay was much more hack-and-slash, where DA:O is more strategic.
posted by brony at 2:10 PM on August 8, 2012

Oh, you didn't mention owning a PC, but if you do, the original Deus Ex is definitely worth a playthrough. As is System Shock 2, which was made by roughly the same team as BioShock. Both games have community-made hi-res texture packs, if old graphics bug you.

Both of these games will easily run on pretty much any computer purchased in this century. I've heard good things about the original System Shock as well, but it's a little too rough around the edges for me.
posted by griphus at 2:17 PM on August 8, 2012

Stay away from Binary Domain (blowing the limbs off the robots is fantastic, but controls, story, dialogue, acting, and the mad voice control thing all suck (at least on PC)).

Skyrim is really popular for good reason, and Fallout 3 or New Vegas are both good (I would recommend New Vegas because it's a bit slicker than FO3).

If you enjoyed Bioshock then Bioshock 2 is worth playing; it could never live up to the first one, but I still enjoyed all of it.
posted by samj at 2:23 PM on August 8, 2012

RED DEAD REDEMPTION if you haven't already played it. Only downside is the lack of player customization; there's some but not a lot.
posted by smitt at 2:26 PM on August 8, 2012

n-thing Deus Ex:HR (fucking fantastic), Alpha Protocol (great, but flawed), and Fallout 3/New Vegas (pretty good, although the action here is a bit less action-y with the whole VATS mechanic)

Also, The Witcher 2! The first one was harder for me to get into, but the second one is fantastic. A real world, lots of customization, don't really need the first game to play the second.

Dragon Age 2 is much closer to the Mass Effect Action-y series than Dragon Age Origins, which is more tactical RPG - not sure if that is off putting. I love origins, 2 is okay. (If you are ok with a more real time tactical RPG and Retro, Baldur's Gate + Balrdurs Gate 2 + Modern Resolution upping mods are fantastic way to kill many, many hours. With the resolution mods, the had drawn artwork is still fantastic. They are so damn good, and hold up well imo)

Skyrim is also pretty damn good

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning has pretty fun hack and slash combat, and a definite world and character combination, although some find the world is a bit ...dull? I quite liked it. Dungeon Siege III falls into this category as well for me.
posted by McSwaggers at 2:27 PM on August 8, 2012

Not quite as much customization, but consider Deus Ex: Human Revolution. There are some similarities, and it's an excellent game.

I would recommend Alpha Protocol as well. Even though the gameplay has a lot of problems, the story is great, and you should be able to pick it up cheap.

For upcoming games, you might want to look at Dishonored.
posted by demiurge at 2:28 PM on August 8, 2012

Skyrim has a weak story and repetitive gameplay. I found it ridiculously addictive. I played it for 100 hours, all the while wondering if I was having fun.

Witcher 2 is superb. Real player choices, not all of them announced in advance. Characters you care about. More realistic combat mechanics (you can't quaff your way out of damage). Interesting play character customization. I've played it twice.

Deus Ex: HR is also quite good. An intricate story. Fun combat and player character customization. You can shoot your way through the game, or sneak around, or sometimes talk your way through problems.

I'm super excited about Dishonored. Wish it were out now.
posted by musofire at 2:38 PM on August 8, 2012

Response by poster: I understand that Witcher 2 has exceptionally difficult gameplay mechanics. Is this the case?
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 2:42 PM on August 8, 2012

Somewhat, but not nearly as much now as upon release. The mechanics are a bit unique, and initially the prologue was unforgiving and merciless in terms of damage taken and combat mechanics, so there was kind of a huge difficulty spike in the beginning as you adapted to it. A common criticism actually, was that it got too easy combat wise later on. The prologue bit at least has been patched to be much more friendly (although, probably still a bit hard), and they have added new difficulty settings and challenges in Free DLC Patches for the computer. I assume you can get these for the 360 as well.
posted by McSwaggers at 2:54 PM on August 8, 2012

[T]he prologue [of The Witcher 2] was unforgiving and merciless in terms of damage taken and combat mechanics
I will have to play more. I think I didn't get past the prologue, I had rage quit from the difficulty, though I was having a blast playing for some time. That said, I would probably recommend it because it's one of the best-looking and immersive games I've played in a while.
posted by brony at 3:35 PM on August 8, 2012

Dark Souls.
posted by prize bull octorok at 4:28 PM on August 8, 2012

If you get your game on a computer, have a look at the Ur-Quan Masters.

The gameplay is different that Mass Effect -- you play a spaceship instead of a dude. But thematically they're very similar.

In U-QM, your spaceship is trying to save Earth from the evil Ur-Quan Hierarchy. You fly around space, harvesting resources, chatting with a dozen alien races, building up your ship, fighting lots of ship-to-ship arena-style combat. It's super fun, and free to boot!
posted by Sauce Trough at 5:14 PM on August 8, 2012 [2 favorites]

(duh, did not read the part at the end and see that you are a console gamer. mea culpa!)
posted by Sauce Trough at 6:50 PM on August 8, 2012

Ur-Quan Masters is of course a modern port, updated as recently as last year, of the game "Star Control II" from 1992, meaning that if the OP has an unmentioned PC running a version of Windows later than Win98, he can play UQM without a problem. Consider it a first step in weening this user off the control pad.
posted by Sunburnt at 9:36 PM on August 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

Tales of Vesperia? It's a good JRPG. Nier is another JRPG title that doesn't get nearly as much appreciation as it deserves. You could also try Dead Space if you're feeling up for another lovely scifi game, I feel like it captures the feel of space quite well. (One of the main reasons I so enjoyed about the Mass Effect series)
posted by Estraven at 9:48 PM on August 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

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