Mass Effect 2 Overlord DLC

by Logan

June 18, 2010

It’s been a solid two months since the last piece of substantial downloadable conflict for Mass Effect 2 was released, but that changed today with the new Overlord pack. While not adding any new content such as characters or different weapons and armor, this pack attempts to tell its own story and takes Shepard and your crew onto the planet of Aite in attempt to stop a hostile Virtual Intelligence from beaming itself off world and causing more chaos.

The mission itself is rather standard fare, but it’s broken up in a style resembling Mass Effect 1 more than 2. There’s plenty of action packed third person shooting, but between that, you’ll be crusing around in the Hammerhead hover tank. This is a nice breath of fresh air that breaks up some of the monotony that comes from killing throngs upon throngs of Geth.

Thankfully, the Hammerhead controls a lot smoother than its ME1 counterpart.

Sticking in line with the Firewalker pack, when piloting the Hammerhead, you’re challenged with platforming like challenges that force you to show off your dexterity by carefully piloting the tank over large chasms and streams of molten lava. The combat in the vehicle is kept to a minimum and it never feels like a hassle to drive from point A to point B.

On the shooting side of things, there’s not much to say. If you played ME2, you’ll know exactly what to expect. The entire episode takes place on one planet, but it appears BioWare took great care to make sure each area had its own feel to it. Some levels have an almost haunting presence that is simply awesome. The creepy sounds compiled with the tense music creates moments that instantly make you think of movies like Alien or games like Super Metroid. In short, neither the tank sections nor the on foot segments are anything new, but they’re just as fun as anything presented in the main game.

The only complaint I can levy against the DLC is that it rings pretty hollow. It’s all a lot of fun to play, but it lacks the charm that the Mass Effect games convey. Your squad remains silent throughout the entire ordeal, and there isn’t much in the way of new dialogue for Commander Shepard. I can’t say that I was honestly expecting there to be much on this side of things, but I think it’s going to be key for future DLC installments. As superb as the gameplay is, the interaction amongst your squad both in and out of battle is what puts the Mass Effect games onto the next level.

In conclusion, I found this pack to be a nice distraction and a good reason to boot up Mass Effect 2 once again. This of course brings us to the classic DLC question that everyone asks, and that’s of course “Is this actually worth the money?” Well that’s a question you’ll have to answer yourself. The pack will take you approximately three hours to complete. At seven dollars, if three more hours of gameplay sounds like a deal at that price, then you won’t be disappointed. This doesn’t suffer the same problem as the Kasumi add-on, in which the real value of the DLC came from the ability to use Kasumi throughout the game which would be a moot point to someone who already completed it. The Overlord DLC stands fine as its own little contained adventure. Overall, if you were a fan of the game and dig some eerie set pieces, then definitely check it out.

Now that this is out of the way though, I'm eager to see what BioWare has in store for future installments. Casey Hudson has already confirmed that more DLC is in the works and has hinted at on numerous occasions of a bridge that would tie together the second and third games. There is also talk about multiplayer Mass Effect. Jump on over to our forums and tell us what you think about that!