Anyone who has spent some serious time with the Mass Effect series, or even the recently released Mass Effect 3 knows just how much science fiction and lore is at work behind the scenes. With several alien species, dozens of worlds and interstellar historical events, those interested can delve into the mythology of the game's universe away from their consoles. That's thanks to the Mass Effect 3 Datapad App, available for free on iOS devices.
Building a fictional universe that only the most hardcore and devoted science-fiction fans will explore - and dissect - can sometimes lead to problems. Just look back to the fan outrage that was the aptly-titled Mass Effect: Deception. But those issues won't seem to be a problem for the free app, as aside from game-integrated email from series characters, trailers and screenshots the Datapad itself contains the same lengthy Codex seen in the Mass Effect 3 retail release.
While most players are too busy saving Earth and everyone on it to delve into the minutia of the Migrant Fleet or First Contact War, having that information at your fingertips when free time finds you seems like a terrific idea. We've already shared our thoughts on why the Mass Effect universe is richer than Star Trek's, and now anyone with an iPhone or iPad can see for themselves.
The Datapad App provides an extended experience of the Mass Effect 3 storyline, with messages received from in-game characters once their respective missions have been completed, as well as updates from the Alliance New Network concerning the Reaper invasion of Earth. In addition purchasers can deploy troops to influence the singleplayer campaign's Galactic Readiness levels through the app's Fleet Commander mode.
The app's functionality and content may be seen as entirely separate from the majority of the ME3 campaign, it's hard to argue that the Datapad isn't worth picking up for serious fans. The access to the Codex alone would provide hours of backstory and history from the previous game's plots, so there's no question that aspiring Commander Shepards will be downloading it immediately.
The Mass Effect 3 Datapad App is available for download from iTunes for the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, 3rd & 4th-gen iPod Touch, and iPad.
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