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A Great read over at io9:
Mass Effect is epic. It's the product of the best parts of Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica and more with a protagonist who could be the love-child of Picard, Skywalker, and Starbuck. It's one of the most important pieces of science fiction narrative of our generation. Mass Effect goes so far beyond other fictional universes in ways that you may not have yet realized.
It is cosmic in scope and scale. Basically, Mass Effect is the most important science fiction universe of our generation.
Science fiction fans have long debated over which fictional universe is the best. The Star Trek vs Star Wars contest is infamous into banality, with lesser skirmishes among fans of shows and books like Battlestar Galactica, Enders Game, Xenogenesis, Farscape, Dune, Firefly, Stargate, and others fleshing out the field. Don't mistake this piece as another pointless kerfuffle among obsessive basement dwellers. Mass Effect matters because of its ability to reflect on our society as a whole.
Science fiction is one of the best forms of social satire and critique. Want to sneak in some absolutely scandalous social mores, like, say, oh, I don't know, a black woman into a position of power in the 1960s? Put her on a starship command deck.