Mass Effect 3 Demo Impressions: Cooperative Multiplayer, PC Version

Mass Effect 3, the end to the Shepard trilogy in BioWare’s science fictional universe, is dropping on players in just a few weeks. In leading up to the huge game’s launch, BioWare gave gamers a Valentine’s Day gift of sorts: a demo of the game that includes the much-discussed but barely experienced cooperative multiplayer mode.

While the single-player content in the demo was mostly old hat for those of us who saw and played demos of ME3 at E3 2011 and San Diego Comic-Con 2011, the multiplayer features of the demo are all new. Alas, only players who purchased Electronic Arts’ Battlefield 3 and redeemed the multiplayer online pass through an Origin account have access to multiplayer until Feb. 17. But a few of us at Game Front have gotten hold of the brave new step in Mass Effect’s evolution, and fresh from the battle, we’ve got a few impressions for you.

We’ve also tried out the first hands-on PC play with Mass Effect 3 thanks to BioWare’s demo, and have a few thoughts on it, as well.

Multiplayer in a Single-Player RPG

We’ve been hearing about Mass Effect 3′s cooperative mode for a while now. BioWare insists the game mode will fit the larger narrative universe of Mass Effect and will be a worthwhile endeavor for those of us who are deeply engaged in the game’s story. The multiplayer mode will be a major part of Galaxy at War, a portion of the game that will tie into other media (like a mobile game) and lets players take on different portions of the greater war with the Reapers around the galaxy. Completing co-op missions adds to the player’s rating in Galaxy at War, raising the galaxy’s readiness to defeat the Reapers; when the player comes to the end of Mass Effect 3′s story, their galactic readiness will have an effect on the ending they reach.

The demo represents the first time we’ve actually gotten to see any part of Galaxy at War at work. What’s on offer consists of two maps, each fairly large, “strategically important” human bases. Both have players fighting off wave after wave of enemies from the Cerberus organization — the pro-human terrorist group that saved Shepard in Mass Effect 2. It’s not unlike Gears of War’s Horde mode, except that certain intervals, players will have to find and eliminate, disarm or otherwise interact with certain items on the level, or kill specific targets within a time limit. As you might expect, enemies get harder and hard to kill the longer the game goes on.

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7 Comments on Mass Effect 3 Demo Impressions: Cooperative Multiplayer, PC Version

William B

On February 15, 2012 at 6:10 pm

Just like a normal Bioware game, there is a program that allows you to change Video settings. You can find it in the Binaries folder. Just to clear that up.

Nick b

On February 16, 2012 at 2:21 am

I actually really really loved the multiplayer. It’s addictive, and the whole levelling up stuff is great fun. It’s also a challenge, but playing with friends is always fun.


On February 16, 2012 at 6:42 am

The multiplayer is actually really good, I’m not a big fan of horde mode/spec ops/zombies mode but this mp mode is actually REALLY fun.

There are random objectives placed that happen every couple of waves, the fact that there is a semi-loot system, customization.

Not to mention it’s not like horde mode/spec ops/zombies where you can just camp a long hallway and win, AI is brutal and the action is consistent.

I’ve already got rating 45 and I’ve only started playing last night.


On February 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm

The multiplayer is awesome, I think you’re just nitpicking on a demo. Of course it’s not going to tie in to the story massively yet because otherwise it would spoil the entire thing!


On February 18, 2012 at 10:56 am

this multplayer is amazing! I don’t think Boiware could have done it any other way. I’m addicted to this demo, and i expect much more from the full game!


On February 18, 2012 at 1:01 pm

The multiplayer was the better part of the demo; however, I do think something other than horde would be good. Nothing but Horde wouldn’t give me the sense that what you’re doing in Galaxy at War really matters, in universe.

Shin Gallon

On February 18, 2012 at 10:21 pm

I do hope there’s a way to avoid Origin when the game comes out. I have less than no interest in the multiplayer, and really only want to see my Shepard through the end of his story, for good or ill.
Of course the game controls better on PC, mouse aiming is objectively better than joystick aiming (there’s a reason FPS games on console always have aim assist, something rightfully considered cheating on PC games).