In BioWare’s latest DLC for Mass Effect 3, fans get to help Aria take back their favorite seedy space station, Omega. Set during the invasion of the Reapers, Omega has been seized by Cerberus’ General Oleg Petrovsky. Aria T’Loak is hell bent on taking Omega back and has asked Commander Shepard for help. In return, you will have her entire fleet to help battle the Reapers.
To begin the mission to take back Omega, players must be past the first three missions Aria sends you on. Once those have been completed, you can travel to the Citadel and enter Dock 42. A batarian will meet you there and direct you to Aria. A series of nicely done cut scenes will play until a huge space battle takes place at Omega. Shepard and Aria abandon their ship and crash into a section of Omega which begins your mission.
There are not any changes to the gameplay with this DLC. You are in control of Shepard and Aria is a support AI. You are sent on missions which must be completed to make your way through this DLC. I liked how there were a bunch of optional side-quests which made this feel less linear than some DLCs. Each section is also pretty large with different rooms, corridors and areas for you to search. New weapon upgrades, available in multiplayer, can also be found.
I was a big fan of Omega in Mass Effect 2 but just love it in this DLC. You not limited to the bar and living areas of Omega but battle through some really amazing locations. From access tunnels and secret rooms to mining areas and outer locations, you really get the sense of a huge space station. The graphics a lighting also work perfectly together making Omega feel like a character and not some location. With many locations being a series of rooms and bays, you get the feeling that enemies will pop out of every corner which they do. Some blast door will slide open and a bunch of Guardians start blasting at you or a shuttle appears and Cerberus troopers jump to your platform firing. It makes for an exciting fire fight.
One of the major highlights Mass Effect 3: Omega is the amount of Cerberus enemies to battle. You get to blast and shoot your way through an entire army which is fun. Even the easiest setting presents a plethora of enemies. Most of the Cerberus enemies from Multiplayer make their presence know with Phantoms, Guardians and Engineers being part of the Cerberus ranks. New enemies are also introduced with their own unique fighting style. Rampart Mechs was a new enemy type that I would love to see in multiplayer. They are like a robotic male Phantom with a sword melee and a bulbble-like shield ability. They add another dimension to battle sequences.
My favorite part of Mass Effect 3: Omega is having Aria T’Loak as a member of your squad. I always loved her character. She is portrayed as this bad-*** Asari in control of the nastiest place in the galaxy. But to see her in action is so cool. I really liked her “Flare” ability which she uses to unleash a huge flare that throws enemies within range causing massive damage. She also has Reave, Lash and Carnage which multiplayer fans are already familiar with. I just love this character even more though I would have loved to have been able to play as her. A multiplayer character based as her would be awesome.
I also like the introduction of Turian females in this DLC. Nyreen is added to your squad early on and is a nice addition. Aria has history with Nyreen. Its revealed that they were friends, maybe more, in the early days of Omega but their paths have parted in part to the “ethical ways” of Omega and its residents. Its like being paired up with an angel and devil, but hot ones. Nyreen’s main biotic ability is biotic grenades which are highly explosive. Again, another power I’d love to see in multiplayer.
I also thought this new character was done really well. Turian females are talked about in the games and part of lore but they have never been fleshed out. I think back to female Krogans and Tali’s physical appearance which were so poorly handled. But Nyreen is an amazing character. Perfectly designed with a great back story and well developed character traits.
Its not perfect though. I’ve installed Mass Effect 3 to ensure fast loads and smoother play but Mass Effect 3: Omega was buggy in some spots. I recall glitches in sound when in battle, jerky animation and seeing Aria’s model spin wildly out of control in some instances. There was a cut scene where Aria is speaking to the masses of Omega and she did this weird spin, limbs crumpled and she popped off the screen then back on. It didn’t happen all the time but was annoying when it did.
Some have said Mass Effect 3: Omega is too short for the $15 price tag. I disagree. I thought each section was the perfect size with tons of enemies and hidden objects. The addition of new enemies, a Turian female, and Aria all make for an amazing DLC. You also get to go back to Omega. Worth every penny. Though I can see why people complained. I didn’t want it to end.
If you are a fan of this franchise, then this a must to have. From Aria and Omega to a Turian female, Mass Effect 3: Omega was an amazing ride.
Mass Effect 3: Omega
Score: 8 out of 10
Metacritic.com: 64 out of 100
Our Take: Amazing graphics and story taking place in the fan-favorite Omega were all huge pluses to this DLC. The addition of a Turian female character made this even better. Though buggy graphics and animation where a hinderance in some spots.
Available on: Xbox 360, PS3, PC
Rated: M for Mature