Tag Archives: collector’s edition

Mass Effect 3 – N7 Collector’s Edition Review

In the Mass Effect fiction, N7 denotes a Systems Alliance military member of the utmost caliber.

I had a difficult time tracking down a copy of the Mass Effect 3 collector’s edition because I didn’t preorder it. It’s readily available at online retailers, but it’s pretty pricey – seventy dollars used. Still, it’s a collector’s edition that packs a punch.

Like most other collector’s editions worth their salt, or money as it were, Mass Effect 3 comes in a flashy tin case. On either side are images of the stock male and female Shepherd. Fleshing out more of the game’s art is the miniature art book the collector’s edition comes with. I’m usually opposed to these miniature art books (especially in Skyrim’s wake) but Mass Effect 3’s is okay thanks to its detailed descriptions. Then again, it’s actually excerpted from a larger (page count and size) art book that’s available for sale.

There’s also a short comic book starring the queen of Omega, Aria T’Loak. It’s interesting and accounts for her time between Mass Effect 2 and 3, but it seems more like an advertisement for the related graphic novel, sort of like the art book being a “taste” of the full-size art book. Also related to the art is a lithograph of the Normandy. It’s really just a postcard without the necessary information, but it’s a cool picture of Normandy nonetheless. Another inclusion is a code to download a digital version of the soundtrack. I’d really like to give it a listen, but I wasn’t able to redeem it because I accidently have more than one EA account. To redeem it, I need to know what my EA account is that I signed into Mass Effect 3 with, and I don’t know what it is.

There’s a ton of digital content included too; namely, the From Ashes downloadable mission, character, and so on. It’d be great if used copies had unredeemed codes for this, but they probably don’t so it’s not much of a bonus for most. The rest of the digital content isn’t worth the extra money, and like From Ashes, they’re probably not available in used copies. Still, there are plenty of weapons, extra outfits, and other digital gear.

At twenty dollars over the standard edition, I think the extra content is worth it. Especially considering that From Ashes alone costs ten dollars itself. Oh! The collector’s edition also comes with an N7 patch, so yeah… There’s no dearth of content in the collector’s edition. Plus, Mass Effect 3 is a pretty darned good game.

Lost Planet: Extreme Condition – Collector’s Edition Review

Wayne Holden ain't no Lou Ferrigno.

The collector’s edition of Lost Planet: Extreme Condition is pretty lame. Luckily it’s easy to find and inexpensive.

It comes with a paltry artbook, snug inside the nice SteelBook game case alongside the manual. The art booklet contains renderings of characters in various stages of completion, plus some background information, but it isn’t very large.

Another bonus to the collector’s edition is the media CD it comes with. Besides containing the soundtrack, it has various media such as videos and wallpapers for a PC. The soundtrack was composed by Jamie Christopherson, an unknown name to me although he has been making the rounds in the video game industry for a while now. That said, the soundtrack wasn’t my cup of tea – it chimed in at the right moments during the game, but the orchestral arrangement sounded generic to me outside of the game.

Lastly the collector’s edition comes with a code for an exclusive downloadable multiplayer map that probably isn’t in any used copies of the game. Plus, the map is available for free on the Xbox Live Marketplace. Plus plus, it doesn’t seem like there’s a large multiplayer community anymore so that bonus is so whatevs.

This all comes inside an awfully nice SteelBook case too. It’s easily my favorite aspect of the collector’s edition. I really like the heft and solidness of the case when it’s chock full of its multiple discs and booklets. I wouldn’t recommend purchasing it… if it wasn’t so cheap and readily available. Still, Lost Planet: Extreme Condition is just okay.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Collector’s Edition Review

The contents of the collector's edition of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

I’ve written three articles covering collector’s editions of video games so far and they’ve all been similar. Namely, they all came in metal DVD cases; of course they contained other bonuses too but nothing spectacular in my opinion. Well, when it came to releasing a collector’s edition of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Bethesda Softworks decided to do it big.

The collector’s edition of Skyrim is hard to miss in a store thanks to the massive box it comes in. Because it houses a foot tall statue of the dragon Alduin, it takes up a lot of space, which is also why it’s been marked down from its original retail price of $150 to $100, so stores can get rid of them. That’s still a lot of money and the game itself is FANTASTIC and definitely worth playing, but maybe you don’t need all the extras the collector’s edition comes with.

Alduin is really solid, like, made of rock hard plastic, and he has many protrusions, so he’s hard to grasp and handle. Luckily he comes with a stand resembling a word wall from the game, although the stand is hollow and feels cheap, the opposite of Alduin. Regardless, that’s not disappointing because it does its job of displaying Alduin well. If you’re unashamed in your love of dragons it’s a wonderful display piece, if you’ve got the space.

Another bonus included in the collector’s edition is a massive art book, definitely the biggest and best I’ve ever received with a game. It’s not miniature like the ones I’ve received with other games; no sir, it’s a full size book. It contains nearly two hundred pages of concept art, computer-generated art, and descriptions of almost anything you can think of that’s in the game. It’s a seriously nice art book.

Lastly, the collector’s edition features a documentary DVD distilling many facets of the game. It never delves very deep into any particular subject, but, like the art book, covers so many features of the game. I wished I watched it before playing through the game or at least before beating it, but listening to the developers discuss various features of making Skyrim was still interesting.

The collector’s edition of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim sells for around $100 now and personally, I think the premium over the standard edition is worth it, if you’re into displaying massive statues of dragons. The statue of Alduin is badass, the art book is ridiculous compared to the ones that usually get bundled with collector’s edition of video games, and the documentary DVD provides some deeper insight into the game. Too bad the game doesn’t come in a nice SteelBook though.

Devil May Cry 4 – Collector’s Edition Review

Utilizing the slipcase, you can choose to display either Nero or Dante on the collector's edition.

When Devil May Cry 4 was released in 2008, Capcom released a collector’s edition alongside the standard edition of the game. Included in the collector’s edition were two bonus DVDs. The first containing episodes of Devil May Cry: The Animated Series with the second DVD containing traditional collector’s edition goodies. And of course, it all comes in a much nicer package.

Like the Final Fantasy XII collector’s edition, Devil May Cry 4’s collector’s edition comes in a SteelBook package as opposed to the standard plastic DVD case. There is artwork on either side of the SteelBook case, one side featuring Nero and the other, Dante. Included is a slipcase that features the logo of the game and a viewing area that will display either character.

The first bonus included in the collector’s edition is a DVD containing the first four episodes of Devil May Cry: The Animated Series. There are only twelve episodes in the series so getting four seems like a pretty good deal. I didn’t care for the anime however. I like a good deal of anime but I’m definitely not too knowledgeable in the medium, but I feel safe in saying this anime isn’t that great. I thought the dialogue was very ridiculous, like the game to be fair, but the action scenes were lackluster and not that prevalent.

The second bonus included in the collector’s edition is a second DVD containing standard goodies. The most notable inclusion contained here is an interview with the producer of Devil Mary Cry 4, Hiroyuki Kobayashi. Also included is a gallery of artwork, a few wallpapers, a screensaver, some chat icons, and a few songs from the game. I could care less for the contents of this DVD, well, besides the interview. That’s because I always appreciate learning about the creative forces behind video games.

The SteelBook case is mint. With all the contents present it has a nice weight and I like the art and slipcase design. The collector’s edition came with a DVD containing four episodes of Devil May Cry: The Animated Series, a pretty good deal, but I didn’t jive on the anime. The second bonus DVD contained a lot of standard fair for collector’s editions, and really, I could care less for its contents. I’m sure most of it could be found online anyways. It appears the collector’s edition of Devil May Cry 4 will run an extra five dollars over the standard edition and personally I’d go for it. The extras included aren’t that great, but the packaging itself is very nice.