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Mass Effect 2 DLC "The Arrival" [Update: Gameplay Demo Post 674]

Arjen

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Jun 29, 2009
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Saw this posted on the Bioware forums (have to take a shower now.)
CDN updates leaked, leading up to the release date of the new DLC

As many of you know, Cerberus Daily News has resumed it's update schedule for the next week, in preparation for Arrival. I've transcribed the updates below. Since these haven't officially aired yet, they should be considered spoilers.

March 22
Evidence continues to mount that the system of mass relays attributed to the Protheans predate their civilization. Dr. Aurana T'Meles of the University of Serrice, a one-time skeptic of the claim, now says she's a convert. "This team has been meticulous in dating relays from many locations," she says in her findings. "It is not their responsibility to hypothesize who created the relays, only to isolate the eras of their construction." Such hypotheses abound and usually feature disappeared species like the arthenn or zeioph. Nearly all have been ruled out since they did not coexist with the oldest of the relays. Dr. Amanda Kenson, team lead for the initial discovery, could not be reached for comment at broadcast time.

March 23
Dr. Aurana T’Meles’ office in downtown Serrice was broken into last night after she made galactic news for supporting the controversial study that claims mass relays predate the Protheans. “I don’t understand,” said a flabbergasted Dr. T’Meles. “All they stole was research done by Dr. Kenson earlier this year. If they’d waited a month, they could have read it all in a published paper.” Security footage shows four batarians dressed in Civilian clothing breaking into Dr. T’Meles’ office at 4:13 local [Thessia standard] time. Skin cells from the scene identified one burglar as Palash Tarn, a former member of the Khar’shan military’s Batarian Special Intervention Unit. No officials from Kar’shan were available for comment.

March 24
Reactions to the discovery that mass relays were not created by the Prothean civilization continue to pour in. Oh Kahje, the response is largely denial and shock. Religious leader All-Bright Olos the 10th, the Sounaril of the Manas tradition, reacted by uploading a 13-minute speech to the newsnets that urged calm and peace. “It is no heresy to say that the Enkindlers themselves may have been Enkindled,” the hanar said. “It is their example of selflessness, courtesy, and willingness to share their gifts that teaches these ones how to live. To say there was something before them, an even more noble being, gives these pertinent an even swifter current to ride, a greater model to which we can all aspire.

March 25
Two unauthorized researchers have been arrested and charged with attempting to tamper with the Lowas relay. “Zahi Moon and Ellis Veech were found on Lowas’ outer surface, planning on accessing the command switches embedded in the relay,” says Council Relay Security officer Lisa Tanabe. “They were about as successful as the last hundred people who tried. The real harm was parking a research vessel near a potential collision zone where debris would take weeks to clean, and we know what a single screw can do to a ship at high velocities.” Tanabe is referring to the tragic explosion of the Mihairokov, a spacecraft that hit an orbiting metal bolt that caused the ship’s cabin to depressurize, killing the passengers onboard.

March 26
A series of security incidents at mass relays throughout Citadel space has led to the redistribution of the Council’s peacekeeping fleets. “Public attention has shifted to the relays, and relay-related crime is elevated,” says Captain Miyamoto Whelan of the Alliance fleet. He went on to list starship loitering, debris dumping, and suicide by relay as chief incidents to be policed. The resulting military presence has been disruptive enough to cause hours and sometimes days of delays for regular flights. “I don’t see why they need to park cruisers on the route to freaking Voya,” said commuter Lakshmi Dasgupta. “No one’s attacking Voya, and don’t tell me they’re there to guard something that’s indestructible.”

March 27
Commerce took a plunge yesterday as galaxy-wide traffic delays ground transport and finance to a halt. “I’d estimate we lost 612-billion credits across the galaxy,” says macroeconomics expert Dora Voke, “and we would have easily doubled those losses if it wasn’t for the asari business holiday.” While traffic flow between relays is back to normal, the effects are still being felt by commuters and vacationers. “Unbelievable,” says Roman Basee, a citizen from Mars who was taking his first holiday in eight years. “The starline says they’ll rebook, but it’s just crazy that everything can grind to a halt. The Citadel’s got to make sure this doesn’t happen!”

March 28
In a surprise move, respected Systems Alliance admiral, Steven Hackett, testified today before the Citadel council that the joint chiefs of the Alliance have relaxed their attitude toward the increased construction of turian dreadnoughts. “The Alliance is behind our councilor one hundred percent,” the admiral said, a significant departure from the Chiefs’ protests of the past. “Having recently conducted significant joint operation exercises with the turians, as well as smaller efforts with salarians and asari, the Alliance Navy feels the threats of the 22nd and 23rd centuries [Earth standard] will be external to the signatories of the treaty of Farixen.” Batarian ambassador Nel’Tarras Tilshan reacted vehemently. “The humans appear to be falling into a bloody-minded course, and we hope they turn back. Dreadnoughts are not for peacekeeping, they are for devastating planets! Hackett now sides with those who are a direct threat to the batarian people.”
 

ape2man

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May 23, 2006
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I'm gonna buy this DLC in the hope its in there. Hell the main reason i'm gonna buy ME3 is that i know its in there.

turian council i'm gonna bitch slap you so hard you're unborn children will come out well-behaved!
 

LowParry

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Nov 30, 2007
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Ickman3400 said:
Probably because of the same reasons we've seen a thousand times in countless threads, and I'd love it if we didn't descend into that debate again.

It's the whole DLC debate, isn't it? But this is out next week? FML. I'm still working through my playthrough and still haven't done the other DLC stuff yet. Oh well. I'll get to it eventually.
 

Ickman3400

Banned
Mar 1, 2011
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CcrooK said:
It's the whole DLC debate, isn't it? But this is out next week? FML. I'm still working through my playthrough and still haven't done the other DLC stuff yet. Oh well. I'll get to it eventually.
Well I meant the whole "ME2 isn't a rpg" thing, but I guess that could be a factor too lol

But yes it is coming out on the 29th.
 

Arjen

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Jun 29, 2009
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Kyoufu said:
I'm going to buy this DLC day one despite the fact that I despise, despise ME2.
Let's net get into the debate why you hayte ME2, but....why would you want to play/ buy DLC from a game you despise?
 

Pooya

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Aug 12, 2009
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http://www.joystiq.com/2011/03/24/mass-effect-2-arrival-dlc-preview/

preview

"Arrival is a side-quest, ultimately," explains Jesse Houston, producer at BioWare, "but it's also kind of an epilogue," he adds, reiterating that it's the final Mass Effect 2 update. Within the context of the game's plot, players can access Arrival at any point after the mid-game Horizon mission. Depending on when players choose to undertake the mission, Houston notes, they could experience some "small differences," though he describes these as "aesthetic" changes only.

Though a side-quest, Arrival is different from other such missions in Mass Effect 2 in that it's strictly a solo operation. Shepard is on his (or her) own throughout the entirety of Arrival.

"Shepard's alone, through the whole thing, and that adds a layer of complexity," observes Houston. The challenge of Arrival is the absence of squad members. Players must handle the combat on their own, without employing team-based tactics, the core gameplay that Mass Effect fans have become quite comfortable and enamored with. The challenge for BioWare was to design this solo combat to scale to the player's level.

I previewed Arrival as a level-8 Soldier, and this particular Shepard was better equipped than some of the other classes to handle squads of grumpy batarians on his own. My one death occurred while charging into a particularly tense gunfight like I was John McClane, reminding me that even a Soldier-class Shepard is no action-movie hero. I can only speculate that other character classes will be even more challenged to use brain over brawn to survive. If you're an Adept or Engineer, for example, the hindrance of only being able to wear light armor could be a particularly difficult weakness to overcome -- I fought a lot during my brief playtime.

Tactful use of cover and a careful approach to each encounter is paramount. BioWare has actually added more instances of stealth into Arrival than found in the main game -- a plus for you Infiltrator Shepards -- though Metal Gear Solid this is not. I was able to side-step two potential fights by surveying the environment and finding a quiet way around. There isn't any tangible reward for being sneaky, but it provides an alternative to approaching the mission as simply a rote third-person, cover-based shooter.

"But what about all the conversations and hard choices?" you may be wondering. I didn't actually encounter many conversations during the first two (out of five) gameplay areas that I played of the mission, and there were no major choices to be made. Without spoiling too much, Shepard finds Dr. Kenson in an electrified torture device and -- with no option to crank it up -- takes her back to the artifact. And then, of course, the plot twists. Just as things started to heat up again, my preview ended.

While Arrival isn't the bridge that many expected and might have hoped would extend the endgame of Mass Effect 2, connecting it to this holiday's Mass Effect 3, it still shows signs of being a good piece of DLC. The mission seems to be on par with "Lair of the Shadow Broker" and "Project Overlord" in its scope and delivery -- an action-packed add-on that extends the universe in a meaningful way.
 

ProtoCents

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Nov 15, 2010
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The challenge of Arrival is the absence of squad members. Players must handle the combat on their own, without employing team-based tactics, the core gameplay that Mass Effect fans have become quite comfortable and enamored with. The challenge for BioWare was to design this solo combat to scale to the player's level.
Uhhhhhhh
 

HK-47

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Oct 24, 2007
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We didnt want to bother getting the other VAs back for the other DLC, so this time we just cut them out entirely, cause going solo is truly the best part of Mass Effect.

Also your squad combat isnt that great, Bioware. Half the time my guys still kneel in front of the wall instead of taking cover.
 

Patryn

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Dec 4, 2007
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Peff said:
Welp, who didn't see that coming? I just hope it's not too short.
I just love that they're already downplaying things. "It's just a side-quest! Don't expect too much!"

HK-47 said:
We didnt want to bother getting the other VAs back for the other DLC, so this time we just cut them out entirely, cause going solo is truly the best part of Mass Effect.

Also your squad combat isnt that great, Bioware. Half the time my guys still kneel in front of the wall instead of taking cover.
This is the biggest problem with casting notable actors in VO roles. They're not going to be able to get most of them back for the DLC, which makes the whole thing feel so sloppily patched onto the game.
 

EmCeeGramr

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Jun 25, 2005
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Sai said:
lol I doubt they'll show it in this DLC, but I can't wait to see the Turian Councilor's reaction to the Reapers tearing everything up.
I hope the Turian councilor just stares at you before ordering the firing of the Anti-Reaper Citadel Cannon and reveals that they've been preparing this whole time, and didn't want to risk spilling the beans to some traitor Cerberus operative like you who could have started a galaxy-wide panic by revealing to the public that the Council was hiding something.

Then he right hooks a dumbfounded Shepard and rides away on a motorcycle.
 

HK-47

Oh, bitch bitch bitch.
Oct 24, 2007
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Patryn said:
This is the biggest problem with casting notable actors in VO roles. They're not going to be able to get most of them back for the DLC, which makes the whole thing feel so sloppily patched onto the game.
Thats why expansions of DLC packs would be better. But fuck the smart choice. Its not like I wanted to hear Tali or Legion's thoughts on Overlord anyways...
 

Psi

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Dec 11, 2010
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EmCeeGramr said:
I hope the Turian councilor just stares at you before ordering the firing of the Anti-Reaper Citadel Cannon and reveals that they've been preparing this whole time, and didn't want to risk spilling the beans to some traitor Cerberus operative like you who could have started a galaxy-wide panic by revealing to the public that the Council was hiding something.

Then he right hooks a dumbfounded Shepard and rides away on a motorcycle.
I'm starting to think I may have made the wrong choice by
letting the council die in ME1
 

HK-47

Oh, bitch bitch bitch.
Oct 24, 2007
49,170
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EmCeeGramr said:
I hope the Turian councilor just stares at you before ordering the firing of the Anti-Reaper Citadel Cannon and reveals that they've been preparing this whole time, and didn't want to risk spilling the beans to some traitor Cerberus operative like you who could have started a galaxy-wide panic by revealing to the public that the Council was hiding something.

Then he right hooks a dumbfounded Shepard and rides away on a motorcycle.
Why arent you writing this series?
 

HK-47

Oh, bitch bitch bitch.
Oct 24, 2007
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Psi said:
I'm starting to think I may have made the wrong choice by
letting the council die in ME1
Simple approach to take is that all the defaults in ME2 are the wrong choices, because they all lead to less interesting possibilites.
 

D2M15

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Jun 9, 2004
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D2M15 said:
"But what about all the conversations and hard choices?" you may be wondering.
For the last ten years, my friend. For the last ten years.
 

Diablohead

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Jun 4, 2006
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Going in solo isn't too bad, not like I actually used my team much as they were mostly shit outside of a few powers no matter how well geared they are.

Maybe it's just me but this dlc should have been set after the end of ME2, having to complete the game first before you can access it, I wanted this to be a true 2.5 bridge instead of what seems to be just another mission you can do any time in the final half, eh.

Will still give it a shot.
 

Hixx

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Jul 5, 2007
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DLC sounds pretty bad, seemingly done on the cheap (no returning VAs). Looks like Shadow Broker was indeed a flash in the pan.

Will buy it though, I'm a total ME2 slut :(
 

Rufus

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Buckethead said:
I haven't bought any DLC before, but I intend on buying this one.

Can you just jump in at any time?
That's how they handle it. You'll probably get an email, reading it will put a new quest on the map (and maybe a new system) and you can do it whenever.
 

Ickman3400

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Rufus said:
That's how they handle it. You'll probably get an email, reading it will put a new quest on the map (and maybe a new system) and you can do it whenever.
Which is pretty dumb for this one.

The reapers are coming! But for some reason we still have to go fight the Collectors and stop the reapers from arriving there.

Should only be able to do this one after you beat the game.
 

Paznos

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Since the PS3 version came with all the DLC it would have been nice if this was also included via voucher code.
 

Rufus

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Ickman3400 said:
Which is pretty dumb for this one.

The reapers are coming! But for some reason we still have to go fight the Collectors and stop the reapers from arriving there.

Should only be able to do this one after you beat the game.
I didn't actually know what this one was about, so you might be right.
 

DuckRacer

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May 24, 2007
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HK-47 said:
But will it be Overlord in content?
It's supposed to take several hours to complete (like Overlord). Unless they're pulling a Pinnacle Station it shouldn't be too bad.

e: probably the wrong thread for this (was this even posted?) but Tricia Helfer just tweeted that she recorded lines for EDI for ME3. Is it normal for voice actors to record this late in development (assuming a fall release)?
 
Dec 11, 2010
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Dreadnoughts are not for peacekeeping, they are for devastating planets! Hackett now sides with those who are a direct threat to the batarian people.
Lol? It's just 40 KT in kinetic energy guys. A frigate can carry dozens of MT+ warheads on them no problem.