Release Date: 03/06/2012
Price: 800 MSP/$10
Gamers were outraged when they discovered BioWare and EA was releasing the loathed DLC for Mass Effect 3 on day one. The reason for this is, people tend to feel cheated out of content when developers and publishers are able to release these expansion packs on the very same day that the game comes out. If the content was ready before the game shipped, then why wasn’t it just included on the disc? Well, truth be told, Mass Effect 3: From Ashes is already on the disc.
Or at least, the “framework” of From Ashes is already on the disc. When this revelation came into light, gamers were even more irked, and understandably. But is Mass Effect 3: From Ashes worth it?
No. As you may have noticed, at the top of this review, I have included information that I usually refrain from doing. In my mind, it shouldn’t matter how much a game costs; since video games are art, they are either of high quality or low quality, regardless of the price point. However, I believe that when reviewing and critiquing DLC, it’s necessary to examine the price of the content as well as how much you’re actually getting with your purchase.
From Ashes offers a new Priority Mission as well as a Side Mission, taking place on Eden Prime, a planet visited in the first Mass Effect game. The main draw of the DLC is to recruit the Prothean squad member. Unfortunately, the adventure is short, and it fails to do anything compelling. It is a by the numbers mission, beginning with minor exploration elements and concluding with a typical “defend this position” battle against waves of Cerberus troops. Straight up, it’s lazy game design.
The rest of the content available in From Ashes includes new costumes for each squad member. The look of your squad does not matter in ME3. Like, at all. How often do you take the time to actually look at them? A new piece of armor probably would’ve been a better idea. At any rate, you’ll also get a Prothean weapon added to your arsenal. It’s insignificant and won’t see any use when there are far superior options available.
Story-wise it can be argued that From Ashes is insignificant simply based on the plot structure of ME3. The Prothean character Javik is unlikeable, and he doesn’t have enough memorable scenes to become invested in him. His interactions with the other characters fail to impress as well, resulting in a one-dimensional, boring character that doesn’t add anything to the story at all. He’s pointless.
Is From Ashes worth the asking price? Absolutely not. You can get through the missions in less than an hour without any trouble, which will also unlock the two achievements/trophies attached to the DLC. There is very little to do with Javik outside of the Eden Prime mission, and the other content added to the game is outright pointless. The first Mass Effect had DLC called Bring Down the Sky that was made available for free on PC, and for a mere 80 MSP over Xbox Live. Basically, that DLC pack cost ten times less than From Ashes, yet is far superior to it. From Ashes is not worth your time or money.
FINAL SCORE: 2.0/10