As the first human Specter – sworn defenders of galactic peace – your mission is to halt the advancing armies of a legendary agent gone rogue. But as you lead your elite team across hostile alien worlds, you will discover the true threat is far greater than anyone imagined.
Three hundred years ago the quarians created the geth, a species of rudimentary AIs, to serve as an efficient source of manual labor. But the geth rebelled against their quarian masters and drove them into exile. Now the quarians wander the galaxy in a flotilla of salvaged ships, secondhand vessels, and recycled technology. Other species tend to look down on the quarians, seeing them as scavengers and condemning them for unleashing a dangerous synthetic life form on the rest of the galaxy.
Saren Arterius is the longest serving turian member of the Spectres - the elite military operatives answering directly to the Citadel Council. For 24 years he has been an agent of the Council's will, a zealous defender of galactic stability in the unsettled border region of the Skyllian Verge.
Official records of Spectres are sealed, but it is known that Saren followed turian tradition and entered the military at the age of 15. In 2155 he was promoted to active service after only a year of training, though it is unclear whether his unit was involved in any of the battles against human forces during the First Contact War of 2157.
In 2159 he became the youngest turian ever accepted into the Spectres. Intelligent, cunning and capable, Saren quickly developed a reputation for ruthless efficiency. Although there were a number of unsettling rumors about the brutality of his methods, there was no denying his results.
In recent years Saren has become an outspoken opponent of human expansion. Like many other non-humans, he believes the Alliance has become overly aggressive in its efforts to establish the people of Earth as a dominant species in Citadel space. As a Spectre it is generally believed he will continue to follow the will of the Council in this matter, but there are some - particularly among the Alliance - who fear Saren may soon decide to take matters into his own hands.
- Immersive RPG: Determine the fate of mankind as you lead an elite tactical strike force as an epic galaxy-wide conflict unfolds. "Mass Effect" will take the player into new depths of an action-roleplaying game, with choice-based gameplay.
- Rich and engaging storyline. While defending galactic peace and earning a position of respect for humanity in the community, gamers will discover that a greater conflict between organic life and artificial intelligence exists. Players' decisions and actions will serve to shape the destiny of all life in the galaxy as you become absorbed in the story that is "Mass Effect," the first game in an epic trilogy from BioWare. They will become the center of an engrossing story as they battle against alien life forms to save the galaxy from threatening armies.
- Player controls the ultimate fate of the galaxy: The player's decisions and actions will serve to shape the destiny of all life in the galaxy, while raising humanity to the pinnacle of galactic civilization via noble means or via tyranny.
- Real-time squad based combat: "Mass Effect" employs a real-time, squad based, tactical combat system. Players will be immersed in intense, challenging and exciting combat.
- Explore uncharted worlds: In addition to the main story arc of the game, players will be able to visit a large number of uncharted, unexplored planets which are not directly tied to the main story. At any time during the campaign, a player can choose to explore one of these planets in an all-terrain rover in order to discover new alien life, resources, ruined civilizations and powerful technologies.
- Digital actors: "Mass Effect" features a huge cast of in-engine digital actors that you will encounter as NPCs, enemies or as party members. Each will have life-like facial and body movements, and an advanced dialogue system will give them engaging personalities.
- Character customization. Players will be able to choose from a variety of stunning, photo-realistic character appearances at the start of the game, and throughout the game can increase various statistics which will have an impact on their performance during gameplay. Equipment, weapons and armor that are acquired during the course of the story will change the appearance of the characters.
- Next-generation gaming defined. "Mass Effect" takes advantage of Xbox 360's hardware providing gamers with exciting new experiences, including photo-realistic, high definition graphics on an epic scale. As the future of gaming goes online, Xbox360 live features, including premium downloadable content and recognition of achievement will be available via the Xbox Live service.
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