I am currently finishing up with my second play through of Mass Effect. I have been enjoying it more than my first. Experiencing the story after the fact always allows a new perspective. I am also on a harder difficulty level as well as completing a far greater number of missions (like all of them). I fight all the "vehicle battles" on foot to gain more experience and my character currently lies at a whopping level 58 as a result. I am beginning to doubt that I will reach level 60 on this play through but with any luck the final two plot missions and the remainder of the side quests that need completing will fill in those two levels.
I have been thinking about how my character will fit into the second iteration and how promised mechanics will work. For example, when you begin a new game in Mass Effect on your second play through, you have to option to use your previous character (his/her, level/equipment, etcetera) with a "clean slate" and your Paragon and Renegade status cleared. I am wondering if in Mass Effect 2 your character will just carry the basic statistics like the current situation or that every decision that you have made in the first entry of the trilogy will really have the promised effect on the second and third game. So far this game has come through on everything that it has promised me so I am willing to believe that I will not be let down.