Book Review: Mass Effect: Revelation

Oh yeah, I realize this is supposed to be a trashy novel. I realize this thing was a cash grab meant to go along with the triple-A Mass Effect game. Published the same year the first Mass Effect game came out, I became interested because this author was the guy who wrote the first two games in the series.

The Book

51tbjieuzqlMass Effect: Revelation
Author: Drew Karpyshyn
2007
Amazon Link

Haha, I wouldn’t have spent real money on this. I saw it on the science fiction shelf at the library and thought, “What the heck. I love the Mass Effect game series.” It was short enough that I didn’t think it would take too much time out of my day, but long enough that I don’t feel guilty for making an entire review out of it.

Non-Spoiler Review

This book is what I would call quintessential cash-grab garbage. It was fun as heck and went along really well with the game. It makes me kind of want to play through the series again because I’m way more informed about Captain Anderson’s past. As a whole, if you enjoyed the games, you’ll probably enjoy this book.

At the same time, be aware that Karpyshyn’s style contains all the same, weird failings of the games. Everyone is sexualized in a weird, over-the-top manner, and the Asari aliens are still mostly a fetish that he tries to temper with idealism about their diplomatic power. The game at least allows you to believe that your actions are actually solving problems, but without the struggle to succeed, the problem solving and information gathering conducted by Anderson seems… broken. His choices don’t always make sense.

Anyway, not worth reading if you’re not into the games, but actually pretty interesting if you did like the Mass Effect trilogy.

3/5 Discoball Snowcones

3 Discoball Snowcones

SPOILERS REVIEW

If you’ve played the game, you know the big twists in the first Mass Effect are:

  1. Saren really is a bad guy
  2. Saren’s ship, Sovereign, is an evil alien that brainwashes people
  3. Matriarch Benezia has ENORMOUS boobs

Two out of those three are essentially spoiled by the novel. I think the reveal is more dramatic in the game, so I’d play the games first, then come back and read the novel if you’re that desperate. If you played the games,  you probably know most of what happened in the book. You know that Anderson failed to become the first human specter. You know the council is a worthless POS.

The book really did feel like extra background information that you didn’t need but might be interested in if you’re hardcore.

Next week:

I will be reading the first of James Reasoner’s “Civil War Battle Series,” Manassas. It doesn’t look good, not one whit, but I decided to give it a try anyway!

4 thoughts on “Book Review: Mass Effect: Revelation

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