Recently, I bragged about having completed the first draft of my Mass Effect fanfiction novel seven years after starting to write it, and boldly stated that I wouldn’t mind spending another seven years polishing it. But several months into it, I’m ready to go nuts.
(There will be no spoilers. This is about craft and whining. Your suspense is safe with me.)
I’m not often moved to write about music but this thing has been a relentless obsession for so many days now, it’s hard to imagine existence without it. I try not to binge on it, and only allow myself to hear it a couple times a day, but even so, it haunts me all the time.
It’s splendid, just splendid. I know nothing about how this kind of music is made and what makes one piece better than another, apart from my own taste. What I like about this one is the richness and diversity of all the little themes, how patiently they are introduced and layered one on top of the other, and how well they work together to evoke in me a sense of distant sadness, far-away places, or cherished memories. Not necessarily joyful, nor painful, but life-changing. And ahead, striving for lofty heights beyond reach, grateful for every step of the climb. It’s such a rush.
The ME3MP Platinum Solos Hall of Fame (PHoF) is, I believe, the oldest community archive. The earliest entries in it date back to July 2012, possibly to the same day when the platinum difficulty was introduced with the Mass Effect 3: Earth DLC. Back then, even the best players needed about an hour to complete a platinum solo. Nowadays, veteran soloists can do it in under 15 minutes.
Playing solo, on easy difficulty, I finished the main story in about 30 hours (two weeks real-time), at pilot level 16. I did every mission that was available for the three factions, but I only spent as much time in freeplay as was required to do the tomb-opening challenges, and I only played the Tyrant Mine stronghold once, with random teammates. I talked to everyone in Fort Tarsis and did not sprint through it, but I didn’t dally around either. All in all, as a single-player game, Anthem has about the same amount of content as, say, Mass Effect 3.