Mass Effect 2: Kasumi - Stolen Memory Micro-Review: Boredom Amongst Thieves

Mass Effect 2's first substantial piece of downloadable content since the game's release, "Kasumi - Stolen Memory"m does a lot of things right as far as DLC goes. Problem is, it also does a lot of things wrong.

Presenting gamers with the chance to add another member to their crew of galactic misfits, Stolen Memory has you travelling to the Citadel to recruit the titular Kasumi, before heading off-world to break into a vault belonging to a very angry South African man.

Sounds good in theory! The problems come in the execution. And I'll have you know before we go any further, I'll need to bring up some spoilers in relation to this DLC.

Loved

Off-World ā€“ Stolen Memory gives you a new planet to explore, Bekenstein, which is the setting for an art heist you're there to help out with. It's a beautiful planet, all blue skies and green trees and water features, and makes for a pleasant change from all the space stations and metal corridors you're used to from Mass Effect 2's main storyline. The actual mission is also refreshingly different. While criminally short, it tasks you with wandering around the home of arms dealer Donovan Hock, undermining his security in an attempt to get into his art vault. It's hardly challenging, but it's nice not to have a mission revolve entirely around gun play.

Hated

Doesn't fit ā€“ This entire piece of DLC just feels wrong in its timing and its intent. It's April, and this game came out in January. If you're keen enough to be buying this, you're also probably keen enough to have finished the game. So why am I recruiting somebody for a mission I've already finished? And why am I getting emails about it from a man I've already told in no uncertain terms to piss off, and who probably wants me dead? This would have been fine if, like Zaeed, it was available close to the game's launch. Coming so far after its release just seems disjointed.

Boringā€“ It doesn't help that Kasumi is boring. You'd think that an art thief who looks like a Sith Lord would be an interesting character, but no. Her lines are delivered in a sterile monologue, her story is never properly explained or developed, and her mission isn't long enough to get a feel for the character. Don't go expecting her to contribute much to a full playthrough of the game, either, as like Zaeed she's not available for inter-mission chats.

I appreciate that Stolen Memory is trying something a little different, but for me, coming so long after I'd finished the main storyline it just feels a little pointless. I don't need any more crew for a mission that no longer exists, and even if I did, I'd need someone a lot more interesting than the disappointingly bland, love-sick thief on offer here. Maybe some post-game DLC is in order next time?

Kasumi - Stolen Memory was released on April 6, 2010, as downloadable content for Mass Effect 2 on the Xbox 360 (version reviewed) and PC. Sells for 560 Microsoft Points. A copy of the DLC was provided for review by the publisher. Played mission to completion, which took around 45 minutes.

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Comments

    Hardly the 90 minutes that BioWare promised.

      You must have been in either a really hurry or you were playing on easy/normal.

    I liked this content - gives an excuse to play through the game again and since i haven't played in a while the firewalker, arc projector DLC has been build up and i haven't played with them yet either.

    I really liked the story of this DLC and how it seems like it will have an impact on ME3. I thought the character was interesting and i know alot of other people do so too.

    I'd agree with Matt, I liked the content and the character. While the mission wasn't 90 minutes long, it did give me a solid hour of gameplay, though it'd be substantially shorter if you didn't take the time to notice the smaller touches throughout the mission including a nice nod to one of Bioware's other games.

    That said I will agree with Luke that the value of the content is going to be very dependent on where you are in the game. If you've long since completed it and don't intend to play it again then you're not going to get a great deal out of this DLC. On the other hand, if you've yet to finish the game I'd highly recommend it, Kasumi's integration into the game is at least on par with Zaeed, and she kicks ass in combat too.

    It's called starting a new Playthrough - fair enough you may not wanna do it. But if you wanna get technical and have a whinge about already finishing a mission of saving the world and not needing an extra member, well get over it!

    I haven't even bought this yet though... :P

    Post-Game mission?

    To be honest Mass Effect continuing makes little sense unless its ME3. Shepard isn't here to take down radical Hanar terrorists or mercs, he's there to take down Reapers.

    Sure, you could bring up side quests, but to be honest, they're just there as an enjoyable filler in between main missions. DLC after DLC of side quests would get very dull, very fast and considering that all Mass Effect games are made to be replayed over and over, I would welcome the new squad member and addition to the main quest.

    As mentioned in the review and above posts, you need to be doing the mission to really get the most of of this DLC.

    Perhaps an expansion, Bioware? That'd be nice. Hell, just some DLC where you need to raise an army for ME3 would be awesome. Then if you bought the DLC that extra outcome would come as a boost in ME3. Considering the geth and krogan allies at Shepard's disposal, this could work. Influencing the situation between the Geth and the Quarians would be awesome as well.

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