Mass Effect 3 Collector's Edition: Prima Official Game Guide Hardcover – Mar 6 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
- Contains eveyrthing you need to know about weapons, characters, side quests, multiplayer maps and the campaign
- Well detailed with plenty of pictures and it reads pretty much like a book
- It always indicates it there are spoilers on the page in case you don't want to know
- Hardcover makes a huge difference as it keeps the guide intact
- There's an online version with this purchase if you don't want to use the actual book (I haven't used it but seems decent enough)
- Multiplayer maps
- No info DLC content
- No mention of weapons and armor unlocks from Amalur Rechkoning
- No maps of systems indicating where to scan for each possible discovery and intel
- Doesn't list how many points each War Assets contributes
- No info on Bonus powers
- no strategy information on fights
If you want all the information the Web is the place to go for it. Aside from that it's a nice book for an ME fan... disappointed with it after seeing what the ME2 guide looked like. So I edited my review and rating.
It's missing the DLC info (including Amalur unlocks), no list of war assets, no list of scanning systems, no good comparison and other basic stuff for guides, like maps. On top of that, it's badly organized, the first and before-last part of the book are interviews and info about development and they always get in the way when searching for the Index or the poor Table of contents. The worst is that it's missing info about conversations with squadmates, I had to go look online for that! It also mentions the ambient conversations, and choices related to these, only in about two paragraphs at the end of the side mission chapter. Yes, only that.
It's useful for strategies though, has some analysis about powers, including multiplayer ones and it lists the content to be found in missions very clearly (in the walkthrough). It also looks very very nice although mine came with rippled pages.
I don't recommend it unless you want it for a collection. Aside from that, it's barely comparable to the Mass Effect 2 one, which I adored. I would put in my "medium" tier of the Prima guides,.
But I am sure with all the info in heare and the stunning art it is still a good buy for most
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Overall, the guide is pretty decent for leveling up your characters and hand holding you through the game (including multiple tactical approaches to battles in each mission), so if that's what you're looking for, then it's worth looking into. But if you're looking for more of a reference to supplement to your own exploration of missions, there's still quite a bit to be desired in its organization and content, and you might be better off searching for stuff online.
What I was looking for:
Played through ME1 and ME2 without guides; was looking for a reference for:
-Decisions to get the best ending,
-Finding items during missions
-Doing the hub quests.
Still wanted to work through missions on my own, so was not buying this for the step by step walk through. Am about 75% through the game.
What's been most helpful:
-Character power development guide:
Guide gave a good overview of the strengths and power ladders of each character (and Shepard) and recommendations for how to build them up to fill specific roles in combination with other character abilities. Made me feel confident about making choices for the 4/5/6 levels for each power.
-Finding Items (non-key items):
Walkthrough sections had text boxes to highlight items to find and screen shots of the locations. This was great because I could skim through the walkthrough for just items to look for, but still explore on my own. Definitely would have missed a few things without it. BUT they did NOT highlight or bold where to find key items for hub missions, so I had to actually read the walkthrough in detail to find those rather than skim :(
-Info about mission lockouts:
Doing some missions will make other missions unavailable, so the guide is good about telling you what missions will be both unlocked and locked out after each mission so that you do the things you need to before its too late.
What I wanted but was missing:
-Galaxy Maps with locations for scannable resources in each star system. Really wanted some screen shots of each system to show me where to scan for resources to maximize time before invoking the Reapers, and there's nothing of the sort. They do have a guide for hub missions, but it's sorted by the order in which you get the missions, not location, so it doesn't help for galaxy scanning efficiency.
-How much War Assets are worth (to help with decisions/know which ones were more worth pursuing). If I have to choose between asset X or Y, does one give more points or go toward a better ending than the other? They tell you what you need do to get a war asset, but not how it impacts the game.
-Romance guide (partial) - For each character, it DOES describe the key romance moments to watch for, but NOT WHEN to expect these events to happen. You have to read the walkthrough in detail to find those/know if you've missed them. Also, how can ME1 and ME2 romances interfere with each other? Can you mess up one by talking to the other person? It doesn't say...
The biggest weakness is there are no maps other than the ones that are provided in game. The previous Mass Effect guides had maps and locations of where powerups and other loot could be found on the various levels (including side missions). This guide provides no maps. It also has no maps (or even a list) providing you with what you can find with regard to war assets in the various systems accessed from the galaxy map or where you can scan in the system to find them.
The weapons show bar graph stat differences between the first level and tenth level of an upgraded weapon in separated pictures, but no comparisons to each other so you can determine which weapon you would like to use in a list form, which would have been the most useful way to determine what weapon you would want to upgrade and use by the end.
It is completely unacceptable that the only place achievements are listed and talked about are on a single page near the back of the book. The walk-through should provide tips and explanations on how to get them. This guide only lists them with the exact same description as they give in game on a single page, and does not explain the best/easiest way to achieve them.
I completed the game, including all side missions, and only "used" this book twice to make sure the moral decisions I was making would keep characters alive (or not). The index was so poor, that looking up the information I wanted was more thumbing through to the right part of the book than knowing exactly what page it was on. Other weaknesses of the index include not listing any of the systems, war assets, and several other obvious terms that you would think to look things up by (they tie into previous weaknesses as well, such as, I should be able to pick up this guide, look up an achievement by name, and learn how to achieve it).
I only give a star here for the material quality of the book and the artwork and extras provided. It is otherwise a very poor game guide, especially in comparison to Mass Effect 1 and 2 guides. It is not very useful unless you want to read (without maps) how to get from A to B, and no table comparisons of stats to determine what the best equipment and powers are to use.
- Completely dumbed down, text/screenshot-only walkthrough, as opposed to presenting detailed level maps. Unless you want to play the game entirely "by the book", you will have to first spend a minute to locate "where you are" in Prima's prose (for which free guides e.g. from GameFAQs are much more suitable). And the fact that the guide is supposedly "spoiler free" is fixing a problem that should not have existed to begin with.
- Even the walkthrough is incomplete, and misses many items found on missions. Particularly annoying are the missing credits/salvages, and certainly gives an ugly impression, how much effort the author actually spent writing this guide! Description of "item acquisition" (that is still in the guide) are sometimes fused together, with the second item mentioned only in passing, and the screenshot missing. In fact, you are better off just scavenge for a few more minutes, instead of being misled by this guide.
- No appendix describing scanning/resource gathering/war assets, which due to its impact on the ending (and especially played without multiplayer), matters far more than Mass Effect 1 and 2.
- Chapter "Essentials" appears to be a chore to get over with, for the author. This chapter e.g. offers zero guide about bonus powers and how to get them (which can depend on dialog choices with your squad mate).
Given all these problems, I plainly do not see how the price is justified. It is really a shame, as the Mass Effect 2 guide by Prima was of a far superior quality.
Sadly, the index is only fair at best, I could not find a decent table of contents and the weapon ratings (weight, capacity, etc...) are a bit off which make it difficult to use the descriptions as a reliable guide. There are a couple other items, like where they simply parrot the exact words one can read in game, but I want to keep this short.
Having played through ME3 twice before ordering the guide (wanted to see if I missed anything) it turned out I hit everything mentioned in the guide, and even matched several of the 'builds' for my NPC companions. It 'is' a nice book, but I doubt anyone that has played ME1 & 2 will need it. Even if you start with ME3, the forums are a better source of information, in my opinion.
Though I am not completely satisfied with my purchase, I am "OK" with it; hence the three of five stars.
It's not the most complete, nor does it have everything like the internet. BUT without it, I seriously would have been lost on mission directions because the quest journal is not clear on where to go sometimes and other times it does not update when you completed missions or how you completed them.
1. I took 1 point away because I really don't mind being spoiled by a guide book. But the guide book says it won't provide spoilers. To me, what's the point of a guide book if it's afraid to spoil the reader. So because it doesn't spoil, I wished there were some information it would provide on how exactly to reach the desired ending, ie what dialogues to choose, etc. Instead I had to resort to watching YouTube videos.
2. MAPS!! This book is missing the Galaxy resource map. A huge omission.