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Kegboy
03-11-2012, 06:18 PM
As promised, here we go. Note the title, we're not gonna waste our time with spoiler tags here. If you haven't finished it, don't read on.

To start things off, here's one of a few Downfall takes that have already been done.

<IFRAME height=315 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/b33tJx8iy0A" frameBorder=0 width=560 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>

Kegboy
03-11-2012, 07:04 PM
Okay, I just spent a few minutes on the Bioware forum, and man that place is depressing. I did see the Tali reveal though, and I see why people are mad about that, too.

http://social.bioware.com/forum/1/topic/355/index/9669294

Trader Joe
03-12-2012, 07:49 AM
LOL at the Tali picture. I'm glad I was never a Tali-mancer. That would have made me angry

Kegboy
03-12-2012, 09:31 AM
LOL at the Tali picture. I'm glad I was never a Tali-mancer. That would have made me angry

That's something I always knew was a no-win scenario for Bioware. Of course, I didn't think they'd screw it up that bad.

Trader Joe
03-12-2012, 09:37 AM
Personally, I would have just kept her faceless. Wasn't that her whole appeal?

Trader Joe
03-12-2012, 09:40 AM
I guess we don't have to use spoiler tags here...

So stop reading if you don't want to see something.


I am still not all the way through the game, but as I mentioned in the other thread it is my understanding that you cannot get an ending where Shephard survives, Anderson survives, the reapers are destroyed and earth is saved, but you have to have a readiness score over 5000. Is this not the case?

Kegboy
03-12-2012, 10:58 AM
Well, it's complicated. Without giving anything away, you can get the "best" ending with a score of 4000, dependent on two things you do (a quick time event and a choice). With a score of 5000, you can fail the quick time event, but you still have to make the "right" choice. And note, if you fail the QTE, it immediately saves your progress. If you miss it and want to try again (like I did), you have to restart the final level.

To get a little spoilery, if all you care about is Shepard surviving, you literally have to make the "right" choice, as in you have 3 paths ahead of you, left (blue), center (green), and right (red). And you have to have the requisite score for him to actually survive.

Trader Joe
03-12-2012, 11:03 AM
It should be interesting if it's all dependent on a choice and playing the final level I'm ok with doing that more than once.

Secondly, I guess my view is, Bioware never promised your choices would directly impact the ending, they just said they would impact your Shep's STORY, and for that they are correct, stuff like your rachni decision does change how you experience the story.

I'm not necessarily just concerned about Shep surviving, I've always expected him to die, but I do want to save as much of my crew/friends as I can (good job Bioware on making me care about characters) and I do want to save the Earth and as many planets/races I can. My Shep is not a selfish Shep, so him living is only important if I've already saved as many others as possible.

I'll come back in here with full thoughts once I've actually finished which I'm expecting to be sometime this week assuming I have the time to get my readiness score up to 100% before embarking on the final missions.

Kegboy
03-12-2012, 11:10 AM
I think that's a good view to have. The game is extraordinary, both in gameplay and emotionally. Every detractor I've read has felt the same way. The problem most everyone has is limited to the last 10 minutes. So I would recommend enjoying the journey to the fullest and not preoccupy yourself with how it ends.

Trader Joe
03-12-2012, 11:12 AM
Yes, either way, I will have enjoyed the ride and will have to applaud Bioware for creating the first sci-fi video game trilogy that really had caused itself to become something more. A real, breathing universe. Halo had the first crack at that and then dropped the ball with terrible 2nd and 3rd installments as far as the story was concerned.

Pig Nash
03-17-2012, 12:45 PM
Just finished. I really liked it. I had played mostly as a renegade after a first paragon playthrough of one and two, my wife started playing as a paragon so I switched and went back to the beginning and played and finished pretty much every possible mission in all 3 games. By the end the game had done such a good job of making me care about my characters I was using paragon choices when I thought they were appropriate, not just picking renegade every time to get my score up. I ended up choosing synthesis and I thought it was right for my renegade Shep to come back a little bit from the edge and sacrifice himself. I understand the complaints but it's such a great game, the ending didn't really bother me.

Pig Nash
03-19-2012, 10:43 AM
Oh and I want to mention that no matter what you think of the rest of the game, the genophage mission on Tuchanka is the crowning achievement of video games. The moral choice was actually difficult and I changed my mind half way through, the Reaper guarding the tower was unreal, the brutes coming after you. It is so good, and Mordin's sacrifice at the end was moving. Culmination of three games worth of backstory going back 1000 years.

No other video game even attempts that, let alone pulls it off.

Kegboy
03-19-2012, 12:38 PM
http://ps3.ign.com/articles/122/1221081p1.html

I've never bought into the whole "change the ending" movement, so I find this change in stance by Bioware interesting. They very well may just be trying to weather the storm, or there might be something to it.

It came out last week that the multiplayer was born from them developing an FPS Mass Effect, and there's been talk about an MMO as well. Only problem with that is the destruction of the Mass Relays sure seems to negate any future storytelling. Unless it's about all the combined fleets of the galaxy trying to figure out how to live together on Earth and Mars with no hope of seeing home again. Of course, I'm sure it'll only take the Keepers a couple weeks to clean up the millions of dead bodies in the Citadel, they can all live there.

Or maybe they'll just have a DLC that explains how your crew got on the Normandy and ran away from the fight leaving you and Anderson to do everything. :whoknows:

Trader Joe
03-19-2012, 01:21 PM
Don't....change....the...ending. How stupid would that be? And it sets a bad precedent for gamers who are already spoiled rotten.

I still haven't beaten it (I know, I know). I've been sucked into multiplayer, but I'm just saying I find it fundamentally silly to change the ending. (I didn't read the rest of Kegboy's post just the article he linked to so maybe he's said something that relates to this) Anyway, I just don't want to see the ending changed it would be incrdibly silly, how would that even work? I guess I can't fully guess without witnessing the ending, but would they just tell you to replay all of ME3 to get a different ending? Seems silly to me.

Pig Nash
03-19-2012, 01:53 PM
I don't think they should change it. Just think the relays being destroyed is potentially problematic..

bellisimo
03-19-2012, 05:32 PM
just finished it...wow what a series it has been...this last game was definitely an emotional roller coaster...i wonder of all the characters that died...how many of them died cause of my actions? Were there any possibilities to save the likes of Mordin, Tali, Legion, Miranda and Thane?

Pig Nash
03-19-2012, 05:36 PM
My Tali and Miranda didn't die. Don't know how though.

bellisimo
03-19-2012, 05:39 PM
I had a romance with Miranda...the only reason I could think of her dying is I didn't trust her and did not give her the access to Alliance resources as she was asking for it in the apartment...if thats the case then booo =\

I also had something going on with Tali and thought it would be enough to stop her from committing suicide after I've picked the Geth to have their own life...stupid Quarians killing wiping their whole race out for nothing...so much rage...

Pig Nash
03-19-2012, 05:47 PM
Oh yeah. I gave her that stuff, and I yelled at the quarians till they did what I wanted.

bellisimo
03-19-2012, 05:51 PM
i'm starting to agree with the notion the ending was all just a dream...it felt out of place and weird for me as well with how the character was moving, how it seemed that I would not have died by the husks coming at me as I was reaching the beam to get to Citadel and how my outfit changed and looked nothing like what my character was wearing (it was the same outfit in the dream)....

Pig Nash
03-19-2012, 05:57 PM
Well it seemed like he lost his armor. But I could see it being a dream.

bellisimo
03-19-2012, 06:06 PM
also the side kicks who were with me when everyone blew up by the beam somehow ended up in the Normandy with Joker in the final sequence - lots of things don't add up.

Somehow, someway the ending of this game made me feel like I've just finished watching Inception...

Kegboy
03-19-2012, 07:03 PM
From what I've read, there's a very convoluted way for Mordin to survive. You have to have killed Wrex in 1, then deleted the genophage data in 2, then sabotage the cure in 3. Otherwise Mordin will figure out the cure won't work and you either have to let him fix it and die, or you have to kill him to prevent the cure and stay in the Salarians good graces. :shakehead

Yep, you killed Miranda by not giving her the data she needed. You would also have had to warn her about Kai Leng and been able to talk her dad into giving up. She was my romance, and had a nice convo with her after we saved her sister. Then they didn't even include her in my death flash (as I remember you get Joker, Anderson, then either Ash, Kaiden, or Liara.)

I saved Tali by having a high enough Paragon score to talk the Quarians out of being idiots. Of course, then their whole freaking fleet (which also happens to be their whole race) followed me to Earth, where they're now stuck on the other side of the galaxy from the homeworld they just won back. That really, really pisses me off.

Thane and Legion die no matter what you do.

Kegboy
03-19-2012, 07:11 PM
As for who gets off the Normandy, that is just beyond me. I've seen different videos that show different people get off, but mine had Garrus and Liara, who were my team on Earth. You'd think that'd be a simple thing to screen for.

Just one more piece of the ending that doesn't add up. Either they got really sloppy or I'm missing something.

bellisimo
03-20-2012, 02:51 AM
It is just disappointing the Mass Effect series received the same bad ending treatment as Dragon Age 2 did

bellisimo
03-20-2012, 03:26 AM
so is there any change in the ending at all if your galactic readiness score and military strength was very low?

D0NT SH0OT ME
03-20-2012, 04:22 AM
so is there any change in the ending at all if your galactic readiness score and military strength was very low?

The lower your EMS the fewer of the three endings you get to choose from.

On an unrelated note, I couldn't be more upset with Bioware/EA after all of the blatant lies (http://social.bioware.com/forum/1/topic/323/index/10204263) they fed their consumers. I as a responsible consumer will not support such business practices, so until they fulfill said promises (free of charge mind you) they have permanently lost a loyal customer and gained an enemy.

On a second unrelated note, Amazon.com is offering full refunds for open copies of the game (if you purchased from them obviously). I mailed mine back yesterday.

Dgreenwell3
03-20-2012, 07:11 AM
I don't get it: what's wrong with the game...it's emotionally driven and probably the most taxing (emotionally) I have ever played. At the end who doesnt want to yell "HOORAH COMMANDER"? Seriously, fanboys always want to complain about something but I thought it was a fitting end to possibly the greatest series in gaming history...

bellisimo
03-20-2012, 07:41 AM
I don't get it: what's wrong with the game...it's emotionally driven and probably the most taxing (emotionally) I have ever played. At the end who doesnt want to yell "HOORAH COMMANDER"? Seriously, fanboys always want to complain about something but I thought it was a fitting end to possibly the greatest series in gaming history...

The problem for me was that during the game every decision I was making was with the thought of consequences of what will happen in the finale - selecting the geth over the quarians/etc/etc all to push forward for the final battle and see how everything shapes up...instead we just got a short cameo from all our allies where we said our goodbyes and then basically had no boss fight (Marauder Shields was the last standing boss?!?)...

Then to find out the other endings are the same as what you chose - it makes all those people who spent countless hours making various characters like they've wasted their time and energy - and I can understand where they are coming from.

I only created one character and just watched the youtube vids about the other possibilities - take ME2's ending for example - if you didn't do the loyalty missions during the game - the end would be totally different - I was expecting similar consequences - instead we're just left with the same ending for all...

Its almost as if they ran out of time/budget/etc and say we'll just use the same ending for all!

Trader Joe
03-20-2012, 07:44 AM
Just wanted to pop in here and say I got to play a few more hours last night, so I'm getting closer.

I see Greenwell's post above, and I have to agree with him, you can never please everyone. Someone will always want something to change.

Saying Bioware blatantly lied is a bit of a stretch, there are technically 17 different endings, and already my choices in 1 & 2 have led me to experience 3 differently than others would which is really what Bioware has always been going for. If people actually bought into the idea that each person would get a completely unique ending, then they're idiots. 1 and 2 were not like that, yes different people could die in 2, but you all ended up in the same place, fighting the same boss, on the same ship. Well different people can and do die in 3.

EDIT: To Bellisimo's point about people who make different characters, the ending may be similar, but how they arrive at the ending the EXPERIENCE, would be different for each character. Mass Effect has never been about the payoff, it's always been about the ride, I mean let's not act like the final boss fights in 1 and 2 were THAT memorable (maybe the cut scenes, but certainly not the actual fights, I mean the human-reaper larvae fight was one of the easiest "boss" fights in video game history). It's always been about the content leading up to that final moment in each of the games before 3, so I never expected 3 to be any different and so far it hasn't.

bellisimo
03-20-2012, 08:01 AM
TJ - have you seen the end yet?
I've heard about the complaints about everyone with regards to the final and I had set myself up to the point where I would've been happy with just a little glimmer of shine in the end - but to be honest...the way it went for me in terms of how I felt was like this:

first 3 minutes - damn this is some emotional **** right here....
3-8 minutes - hey this wasn't as bad as people were *****ing about
10+ minutes - wait a minute - what the hell happened to everything else?

in the first 10 minutes after finishing the game - I was still in that emotional state where it all made sense...but once that rush was gone - there were too many wtf? that popped up and continues to pop up the more i think about it...

EDIT - having said all of that, I don't expect or demand a new ending from Bioware/etc - just take it as it is and hope that other game series will build on this style of story-telling and move forward.

Trader Joe
03-20-2012, 09:20 AM
No, I haven't completely beaten it, so my opinion may change. I guess I'm just frustrated there is so much complaining even if it was the worst ending to any piece of media of all time, this would still be one of the best video game trilogies ever, and maybe the best even still. That is how good the story telling has been throughout the series. Think about all the "Oh ****!" moments this series has given us. From finding out the collectors are Protheans, to the unmasking of Saren's ship in ME1. There are too many amazing moments in this series for me to even begin to think about criticizing Bioware.

Kegboy
03-20-2012, 09:29 AM
I actually thought the boss fight in 1 was pretty cool and hard as hell. 2, yeah, not so much.

Kai Leng was fun. And, that's it. I mean, sure the last Banshee/Marauder fight was hard, but was essentially a multiplayer Reaper match. Then, dear god. Limp, bang-bang-bang, limp, limp, talk talk talk talk bang. And that's all before the kid and the last 10 minutes.

Kegboy
03-20-2012, 09:37 AM
Joe, I would warn you I've read a lot of people say they felt the same way before they finished it. I didn't feel Bioware was above criticism (I never liked Dragon Age), but KoTOR is arguably my favorite game ever, and I played through ME1 and 2 a good 5 times each.

If nothing else, you've been hardened enough that you won't be blindsided by the ending. And hey, maybe you'll love it like some people do. Just don't go into it expecting, since the whole series has been so great, that the ending will live up to that standard.

Trader Joe
03-20-2012, 09:46 AM
Oh I don't think Bioware is above criticism. I hated Dragon Age. I just think the Mass Effect story arc is bloody brilliant, but, yes, I realize I need to beat it. Damn work is standing in my way. I still have really no idea what has happened in the ending, I mean I see bits and pieces but for all I know perhaps a giant race of super monkeys shows up and destroys the galaxy at this point. I just know people apparently don't like it.

BTW, if anyone wants to hook up to play online, add me on XBL TraderJoe335i

bellisimo
03-20-2012, 10:00 AM
Mass Effect is like going to a fine restaurant and having a 7 course meal which is all great till its time for dessert - and while you're looking for a delicious cake to finish it all up, you're given a cake that tastes like *insert something which you don't like here*

basically its the sour taste of the end which people are complaining about.

D0NT SH0OT ME
03-20-2012, 12:26 PM
I don't get it: what's wrong with the game...it's emotionally driven and probably the most taxing (emotionally) I have ever played. At the end who doesnt want to yell "HOORAH COMMANDER"? Seriously, fanboys always want to complain about something but I thought it was a fitting end to possibly the greatest series in gaming history...

This is more than just "fanboys" complaining about the ending. The vast majority of people hate the ending (http://social.bioware.com/633606/polls/28989/). Keep in mind this is a poll with a sample size of 60,000+. Most national polls only have a sample size of 1 to 5 thousand.


Just wanted to pop in here and say I got to play a few more hours last night, so I'm getting closer.

I see Greenwell's post above, and I have to agree with him, you can never please everyone. Someone will always want something to change.

Saying Bioware blatantly lied is a bit of a stretch, there are technically 17 different endings, and already my choices in 1 & 2 have led me to experience 3 differently than others would which is really what Bioware has always been going for. If people actually bought into the idea that each person would get a completely unique ending, then they're idiots. 1 and 2 were not like that, yes different people could die in 2, but you all ended up in the same place, fighting the same boss, on the same ship. Well different people can and do die in 3.

EDIT: To Bellisimo's point about people who make different characters, the ending may be similar, but how they arrive at the ending the EXPERIENCE, would be different for each character. Mass Effect has never been about the payoff, it's always been about the ride, I mean let's not act like the final boss fights in 1 and 2 were THAT memorable (maybe the cut scenes, but certainly not the actual fights, I mean the human-reaper larvae fight was one of the easiest "boss" fights in video game history). It's always been about the content leading up to that final moment in each of the games before 3, so I never expected 3 to be any different and so far it hasn't.

Bioware blatantly lied, that is not a stretch in any way, shape, or form.

http://i686.photobucket.com/albums/vv229/Oregondiver1/xUq9t.png

Pig Nash
03-20-2012, 12:38 PM
I agree with a lot of this article from Rock, Paper, Shotgun:

http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/03/19/whats-right-with-mass-effect-3s-ending/

What's Right With Mass Effect 3's Ending


The obsession with endings is a peculiar one. Perhaps it’s a result of having been indoctrinated by a lifetime of movies with “surprise twists”, or stories so poorly written that they rely on their final hook. But however we’ve come to this place, it’s one that fails to recognise the real pleasure of being told a story. Mass Effect 3 tells a story, and I’m here to defend it.

Clearly this post contains spoilers. All of them.

Another trap gamers have fallen into is the sheer disgust with which the notion of “being told a story” is met. The distinction with gaming, you see, is you get to make choices, and those choices have consequences, and thus the game is unique to us. That notion makes sense in a game like Minecraft, but applying it to narrative, pre-scripted projects like the Mass Effect series is just naive. Even in a game like Dragon Age, where our choices lead to what feels like a unique conclusion just for us, we still fought the same big dragon, still followed the exact same path, and merely received cosmetic differences, none unique but shared by tens/hundreds of thousands of others. And that’s great! Because BioWare had a story to tell, and they were going to tell it.

I feel like so many of people’s complaints about Mass Effect 3′s apparent lack of consequence would have been addressed by something as tacky as Dragon Age’s flash-card descriptions of what had happened to the characters in your party. Like an Eighties movie freeze-framing at the end and telling us who went on to discover a cure for cancer, and who finally settled down and had three kids, it certainly gives an immediately satisfying sense of closure, and perhaps would have dealt with a lot of the grumbling. But I’d argue it robs the player of so much potential for those characters. “Grunt went on to form a band, Grunt And The Tube Babies, who had 91 top ten hits in the Galactic Billboard, thanks to Shepard’s love and support.” I loved and supported Grunt! That means my choices were meaningful!

But here’s the thing: My choices did have consequences. So many, on so many of the characters, in so many ways. It’s just, those consequences occurred on my long path toward the ending. And, well, that’s bloody brilliant, isn’t it?

Many are upset by the final moments, a three-way decision that is not impacted upon by the rest of the game, as if this invalidates everything that came before it. But two things. 1) What about everything that came before it? 2) How is that decision not impacted upon by the previous three games?!

A choice I made wiped out an entire species. Unable to choose the Quarians’ wrath over the Geth’s capitulation, I was unaware that giving them the option to choose would mean seeing them wiped out of existence. Even less that Tali would throw herself off a cliff in understandable suicidal misery. And that choice, that decision to give the freshly sentient Geth my support, had one hell of a consequence on the galaxy. In that final battle the Geth fought alongside the Alliance forces, something that would have seemed impossible at the end of Mass Effect 1. The Quarian were all dead, every last one of them. My actions had consequences, and they were beyond huge.

I forged cooperation between the Krogan and the Turians. I’ve no idea if that’s a pre-scripted inevitability, or the result of my choices, and crucially I don’t care. As a result of what I did, however it came about, another remarkable change occurred in the galaxy. One with enormously far-reaching consequences. I saw the Salarians, albeit unwillingly, give the Krogan life. My involvement saw that real, extraordinary change occur, whether a race was broken free from a curse that would have seen them wiped out. I made the decision that even though there may be terrible consequences, this species deserved the right to breed.

Those are some of the massive consequences my actions had. Then there were the dozens and dozens of minor, more personal ones. The relationships I forged, the people I loved, the comments I made. They all influenced not only the on-going relationships with other characters, but so crucially, the moments themselves. By choosing to be supportive rather than strict, the instance of that conversation changed, the tone was a consequence of my actions, and the reactions of others were changed in context. Because I choose to shoot down the advances of Traynor, I didn’t have a sexual relationship with her. Because I opted to be supportive of Joker and EDI’s relationship, they found love. Because I said a kind thing, rather than a cruel thing to Liara, she felt good in a moment, rather than bad.

Characters I almost ignored, like James Vega and Ashley Williams, still were impacted by my presence in their lives, and mine was impacted by them. I encouraged Vega to join the N7. I teased Ashley when she was hungover, rather than admonished. And while all those things may have made no difference to whether the Reapers were defeated, of course they had consequences on my game. Consequences in those instances, affecting my story and toning my experience.

But what about those final three choices. Yes, of course, they were a strange way to finish. But to suggest that they were out of the blue is absolutely untrue. And to write off the “ghost boy” is to make the same sad mistake that so many do with the beach scene in Contact, when we see Ellie’s father. An alien/god choosing to appear in a meaningful form obviously does not mean it is that thing. The Catalyst appearing as that small boy could hardly have been more established by the game, via three separate dream sequences that demonstrated quite what a devastating effect his death had had on Shepard. He came to represent all the terrible deaths on Earth, and indeed throughout the galaxy, that Shepard was unable to stop. He haunted her dreams because he was the catalyst for her fear and drive. (Although you could argue that he himself did get used up in the reaction.) For the Catalyst to choose his form to appear to Shepard made sense – it was designed to create an emotional reaction in her, to represent the potential for gain after so much loss.

And then the choices themselves. Of course anyone is welcome to dislike the options, or dislike that they’re there at all, but to suggest they’re not relevant to the games isn’t fair. There was certainly a failure to properly define that it all comes down to the creation of Synthetics, and their eventual destruction of Organics, and I am confused by how an apparently ancient Synthetic race is the one arguing this. But as Shepard herself appeals, this is the result of an ancient race having lost its way. They firmly believe that what they do is for the good of the galaxy, and that they’re preserving these races in Reaper form, but they do not see how evil their actions have become. They’re wrong. But they’re wrong from a position of enormous power, and it’s a power that not only dominates the worlds of Mass Effect, but also the player. Those three choices – those are what you get, from a wayward god-like species that’s in control. Don’t like the options? Hell, maybe that’s the point.

My choice – to choose synthesis – was utterly and completely influenced by the three games I’d played. I had seen the potential, the evolution of the Geth into a race capable of independent choice, the relationship between an AI and a human, and the possibility of a massive uniting step forward from a repeating pattern that had gone on for countless aeons. It may be sci-fi hokum that it’s possible, it may spring from nowhere that a big wobbly green light could turn all robots and humans into robothumans. But I was cool with Mass Effect Relays transporting me millions of lightyears around the galaxy in only the time it took for one maddeningly unskippable cutscene to play through. I’m okay with made up sci-fi nonsense in my made up sci-fi nonsense.

The consequence of having played three superb games – games in which I’d felt relationships with characters like in nothing else I’ve played – played out in that choice.

I commented to others as I played the game over the last week how exciting it was that decisions I’d made five years ago were having an impact on the story I was being told now. My being able to continue a relationship with Garrus was a joy, and made a huge difference to how I experienced the game. The races I’d saved being present at the end, fighting alongside me, was more important to me than whether it actually made any difference to what happened.

I’ve played each game in the series once. At around 30 hours a time, that’s plenty for me. So I’ve not dissected them like a detached scientist, analysing which parts would have been the same no matter what I did. I find it so remarkable that so much of people’s fury with the game comes not in what they experienced, but what they learned about their experience after. For me, I filled up that bar with green, I made the choices that mattered to me, and in those final scenes I saw thousands and thousands of ships turn up to fight for Earth. That was my experience as I played, and I adored it. It was dark, brutal, often devastating. It was funny, silly and often heart-warming. In the end, it was the story of a small group of friends, and their particular experience of the end of the worlds. A story about the hope to be found in utter devastation.

The ending may not have matched up to your wishes. Despite my vociferous support for it, I can empathise with a number the arguments. But it was not a denial of choice or consequence –it was a series of three games about choice and consequence, the two happening constantly throughout. And good grief, thank goodness it didn’t fade to black and leave everything ambiguous, with just enough room for 900 more sequels.

Kegboy
03-21-2012, 11:38 AM
http://blog.bioware.com/2012/03/21/4108/



To Mass Effect 3 players, from Dr. Ray Muzyka, co-founder of BioWare

As co-founder and GM of BioWare, Im very proud of the ME3 team; I personally believe Mass Effect 3 is the best work weve yet created. So, its incredibly painful to receive feedback from our core fans that the games endings were not up to their expectations. Our first instinct is to defend our work and point to the high ratings offered by critics but out of respect to our fans, we need to accept the criticism and feedback with humility.

I believe passionately that games are an art form, and that the power of our medium flows from our audience, who are deeply involved in how the story unfolds, and who have the uncontested right to provide constructive criticism. At the same time, I also believe in and support the artistic choices made by the development team. The team and I have been thinking hard about how to best address the comments on ME3s endings from players, while still maintaining the artistic integrity of the game.

Mass Effect 3 concludes a trilogy with so much player control and ownership of the story that it was hard for us to predict the range of emotions players would feel when they finished playing through it. The journey you undertake in Mass Effect provokes an intense range of highly personal emotions in the player; even so, the passionate reaction of some of our most loyal players to the current endings in Mass Effect 3 is something that has genuinely surprised us. This is an issue we care about deeply, and we will respond to it in a fair and timely way. Were already working hard to do that.

To that end, since the game launched, the team has been poring over everything they can find about reactions to the game industry press, forums, Facebook, and Twitter, just to name a few. The Mass Effect team, like other teams across the BioWare Label within EA, consists of passionate people who work hard for the love of creating experiences that excite and delight our fans. Im honored to work with them because they have the courage and strength to respond to constructive feedback.

Building on their research, Exec Producer Casey Hudson and the team are hard at work on a number of game content initiatives that will help answer the questions, providing more clarity for those seeking further closure to their journey. Youll hear more on this in April. Were working hard to maintain the right balance between the artistic integrity of the original story while addressing the fan feedback weve received. This is in addition to our existing plan to continue providing new Mass Effect content and new full games, so rest assured that your journey in the Mass Effect universe can, and will, continue.

The reaction to the release of Mass Effect 3 has been unprecedented. On one hand, some of our loyal fans are passionately expressing their displeasure about how their game concluded; we care about this feedback, and were planning to directly address it. However, most folks appear to agree that the game as a whole is exceptional, with more than 75 critics giving it a perfect review score and a review average in the mid-90s. Net, Im proud of the team, but we can and must always strive to do better.

Some of the criticism that has been delivered in the heat of passion by our most ardent fans, even if founded on valid principles, such as seeking more clarity to questions or looking for more closure, for example has unfortunately become destructive rather than constructive. We listen and will respond to constructive criticism, but much as we will not tolerate individual attacks on our team members, we will not support or respond to destructive commentary.

If you are a Mass Effect fan and have input for the team we respect your opinion and want to hear it. Were committed to address your constructive feedback as best we can. In return, Id ask that you help us do that by supporting what I truly believe is the best game BioWare has yet crafted. I urge you to do your own research: play the game, finish it and tell us what you think. Tell your friends if you feel its a good game as a whole. Trust that we are doing our damndest, as always, to address your feedback. As artists, we care about our fans deeply and we appreciate your support.

Thank you for your feedback we are listening.
Ray

Dgreenwell3
03-21-2012, 12:37 PM
I find it extremely hard to believe that a game that has over 90 perfect scores is so majorly flawed...in life people want to have something to complain about...mass effect 3 just blew it's creative wad on the second game, and I will have to say, it was pretty much as good as I expected. I have played all 3 games, I have picked them up the days they came out...I loved it, I still Iove it...

Kegboy
03-21-2012, 12:55 PM
Sorry, I've got enough in life to complain about. I loved the first two games, I wanted and fully expected to love this one, too. And I did, except for the last half hour. You can say I shouldn't let it bother me and move on, and maybe you're right. All I know is I fully planned on playing through this one a good 4-5 times like I did the first two. Now I have zero interest in doing so, and that depresses the hell out of me.

Dgreenwell3
03-21-2012, 12:57 PM
Workin on a surviving playthrough...

Kegboy
03-21-2012, 07:25 PM
Stumbled upon this. Guy's a little pompus, especially the first few minutes. Guess he's got some schtick to maintain, but this is still an excellent summation of the problems people have. It's certainly long, and I don't necessarily agree with everything he says, but he still does a much better job articulating my feelings than I ever could.

In my head I knew it was the case, but it was so depressing to see the side-by-side comparison of the cut-scenes near the end.

<IFRAME height=315 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/6M0Cf864P7E" frameBorder=0 width=560 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>

bellisimo
03-22-2012, 06:04 AM
you know what I realized? MASS EFFECT is pretty much the same ride as LOST was!

Dgreenwell3
03-22-2012, 08:16 AM
you know what I realized? MASS EFFECT is pretty much the same ride as LOST was!

Lol except before the end we had a semblance of what's going on...still think it was all a dream, going to have a fight beyond fights in 4...l

Kegboy
03-23-2012, 02:38 PM
I'm watching IGN's spoilercast, and I must say, they're making a compelling case for the Indroctination argument.

http://www.ign.com/videos/2012/03/23/ign-live-presents-mass-effect-3-spoilercast

redfoster
03-28-2012, 09:35 PM
Umm... still wanna return your copy, guy?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ythY_GkEBck

Brilliant.

Kegboy
03-28-2012, 10:19 PM
Sorry, I liked this a lot better.

<IFRAME height=315 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/467pmIX-oZo" frameBorder=0 width=560 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>

Dgreenwell3
03-29-2012, 08:26 AM
Umm... still wanna return your copy, guy?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ythY_GkEBck

Brilliant.

DANG, I figured it would be something like that. MIND BLOWN.

Major Cold
03-29-2012, 10:29 AM
You guys have to watch this video. Take the time...

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ythY_GkEBck" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Why haven't you watched it? Seriously this makes sense of the ending, and what may come.

Dgreenwell3
03-31-2012, 09:03 AM
I just had a thought, this could be a similar event (you live and continue your character or become indoctrinated) to mass effect 2...

Dgreenwell3
03-31-2012, 09:04 AM
Can you imagine the bioware people saying "FINALLY! It took you guys entirely too long to figure that out."

Kegboy
03-31-2012, 10:34 AM
Can you imagine the bioware people saying "FINALLY! It took you guys entirely too long to figure that out."

If that were really the developers intention, that would just be horrible presentation on their part. It's one thing to be avant garde, but you should at least make things somewhat cogent.

However, I'm not buying that video. It's certainly well done and nice in theory, and they do make some good points along the way. But in the end I can't help but see it as fanfic trying desperately to make sense of a muddled mess.

Dgreenwell3
03-31-2012, 10:49 AM
If that were really the developers intention, that would just be horrible presentation on their part. It's one thing to be avant garde, but you should at least make things somewhat cogent.

However, I'm not buying that video. It's certainly well done and nice in theory, and they do make some good points along the way. But in the end I can't help but see it as fanfic trying desperately to make sense of a muddled mess.

It makes sense of almost everything...I am going to guess the fan fic Is more like developer fic, also
Makes sense of why in the one ending you see shepherd breathe in as if he is waking up...

redfoster
03-31-2012, 01:12 PM
I think KegBoy just wants to continue hating for a while. Sucks for him, because I love the ending and now there is hope for DLC where we can keep playing and perhaps finish the Reaper fight.

Here is another good link on it: http://uninhibitedandunrepentant.tumblr.com/post/19344938387/mind-holy-****

[EDIT]And another: http://w11.zetaboards.com/Theorycraftng_HUB/topic/7698722/1/

Kegboy
04-05-2012, 04:44 PM
http://blog.bioware.com/2012/04/05/mass-effect-3-extended-cut/

No changes or new gameplay, just more cutscenes. Is this gonna be like Empire Strikes Back where Lucas put in scenes of Vader asking for his shuttle, getting on the shuttle, and the shuttle flying to his star destroyer? Cause yeah, that'll fix everything. :sarcasm:

Or maybe they'll just add more keepers. :shrug:

Kegboy
06-26-2012, 10:11 AM
http://www.masseffect.com/about/extended_cut/

And here it is. Haven't listened to the audio yet. I wouldn't be surprised if I don't get to this until the weekend. Guess I'll need to play some MP to get my Readiness score respectable as well.

It sure would be nice if this gets my juices flowing and leads me to go back and play through with all my different character saves. That's probably setting the bar a little high, though. I never much liked the idea of a redo, but if nothing else it should be interesting to see what they came up with.

Trader Joe
06-26-2012, 01:38 PM
I'm so freaking hesitant of what we are going to see in this extended cut. Will it be something like the indoctrination theory?

And if not how do they handle all the plot holes?

the biggest one to me being, how does Hackett communicate with you on the Citadel when they think no one made it to the Citadel? As well as how does Shep get back to London in the ending where he survives since the Citadel blows up?

That lead up scene is so powerful and if they let the plot holes poop it away I am going to be disappointed

redfoster
06-26-2012, 07:25 PM
Your questions are answered by the indoctrination theory. I won't have time to play this for a while, but it looks cool. Surprised it is free.

ilive4sports
06-26-2012, 10:21 PM
Your questions are answered by the indoctrination theory. I won't have time to play this for a while, but it looks cool. Surprised it is free.
there would be a massive **** storm if they charged for this. they put this out to fix the game, charging their fans would be such a slap in the face, i dont know if even EA would do that.

xBulletproof
06-26-2012, 10:22 PM
This might be a spoiler, but I don't consider it one, but I'll spoiler it anyway for those who haven't seen the extended videos ....

The Indoctrination theory is dead. I never considered it legit to begin with.

I watched the extended cuts on YouTube, I certainly didn't play it. I traded the games (still had 1, and 2 as I refused to trade them in) in as soon as I saw the ridiculous ending. It killed the entire series for me. The extended cuts were better, but still leaves a stupid mess.

Kegboy
06-26-2012, 11:04 PM
Strange how oddly satisfying shooting the kid in the face was.

I've just played through the very end a couple times. So far I'm moderately happy with what they've done, but I know for the full experience I need to go back to Cerberus Headquarters.

ilive4sports
06-26-2012, 11:09 PM
haven't played the new ending, but watched the different ones on youtube. Definitely better than what they had done. If it was like this from the start, there would be some unhappiness, but for a series like Mass Effect, no matter what the ending, that was gonna happen. Too epic of a trilogy honestly.

Trader Joe
06-27-2012, 08:46 AM
Strange how oddly satisfying shooting the kid in the face was.

I've just played through the very end a couple times. So far I'm moderately happy with what they've done, but I know for the full experience I need to go back to Cerberus Headquarters.

No, you don't. The Cerberus HQ mission is the exact same.

Trader Joe
06-27-2012, 08:56 AM
So I played through it, here were my thoughts....

I still think the original ending was supposed to be about Shepard either giving into indoctrination (control or synthesis) or defeating indoctrination once and for all (destruction) and there by removing the Reaper's greatest power (their control). There are still some clues that this was supposed to be the case, I.E. Shepard still looking at the mirror spot on his torso with all that blood after he shot Anderson in both versions.

However, too many people I think were upset that their ending was technically "bad" that Bioware had to replace it with something more cookie cutter. The ending was good the first time I thought, and this is still a good ending, but I would not say it's "better" it's just a more cookie cutter ending for the cookie cutter action game crowd, IMO. Yes, it gives you a lot of cathartic resolution, but it still leaves some questions unanswered. Like, how does Shepard get back to London if he lives during your destruction choice ending? I know people wanted to see Krogan babies and happy Quarians living in their apparently techno club influenced world, but I personally think I liked the symbolism of Bioware's more vague original ending just a little better.

Either way, this is the best video game trilogy of all time, hands down and has accomplished so much to move the genre forward. I'm personally happy with both endings, I'm just a little sad for Bioware that I think their original ending completely went over most people's heads.

Also, the shooting the kid ending was kind of hilarious, but I also think that was Bioware's big "middle finger" moment to everyone that told them to change the ending, because how many people are going to show up there so excited to see all the new scenes, and just automatically shoot the kid just nonchalantly like we all did originally anyway? Only to have to wait 10-15 minutes to get back to the ending part again. I definitely think Bioware was trying to send a subtle **** you to all of the people that *****ed and moaned there.

Anyway, great game and now I think two very good sets of endings. You can either take the one that leaves a little more to the imagination or you can go for the more literal explained one, both IMO are good endings to an amazing story, but I don't believe that one was superior to the other...just different.

EDIT: So apparently if you pick destroy and you have a low EMS score, there is a scene shown after the credits where instead of Shep drawing a breath, you see someone pulling your helmet from some rubble on earth. This suggests to me that the ending is still about indoctrination. Destroy is still the choice that matters, and Shepard himself, or more appropriately his mind, is the catalyst, when he rejects the reapers, he sets off the crucible and kills them. However, his body never actually left London. Everything we see on the Citadel is an "indoctrination dream" and choosing controll or synthesis (or shooting the kid) causes the dream to continue, but choosing to destory is the only one that breaks the dream, and there fore the only one that contains real events after the choice is made. I kind of like this theory and it seems to explain the still dream like state/events you encounter on the citadel (like looking at all the blood as if you had been shot as well)

xBulletproof
06-27-2012, 07:43 PM
Joe -

The people I took on the last mission were with me when I was zapped by the Reaper. Well how did they end up in the Normandy in the ending crash scene during the final cut scene? That would at the very least imply that something wasn't right long before you were on the Citadel. The entire final mission was fubar or something. None of the indoctrination theories I've seen can explain that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=96CczhHtqgY

Watch that video. In the first few seconds look at the bottom of the screen. He has Garrus and Liara with himwhen everything around him is destroyed by the Reaper. Then move the vid to the end and look who walks out of the damn Normandy on the final cut scene. Garrus and Liara.

So how did only the Citadel part end up in his mind? It couldn't have. It makes no sense. None of it does. You make the decision on who comes with you way before that event.

Just for reference, the writers have spoken up fairly quickly after the game came out about how they were just shut out of the creative process and the lead (Casey ... something) wrote the ending without any input from anyone else. Every part of every bit of Mass Effect was put up for nitpicking and input from several writers except the very end. That is a complete screw up and that doesn't even begin to get into how we were sold the idea of "multiple endings", that ended up as only being "multiple colored endings".

The ending was a complete screw up.

xBulletproof
06-27-2012, 08:12 PM
Joe Part 2 -

Also, how can Shepard's mind be the catalyst? The Protheans had the catalyst thousands of years ago. Did they take the Delorean into the future to kidnap Shepard? lol

Also how could Shepard have been indoctrinated? The catalyst (child) clearly states that the Illusive Man was incapable of making this choice because he was indoctrinated. So why is Shepard indoctrinated, but allowed?

Again, it didn't go over my head, it doesn't make sense.

Kegboy
06-27-2012, 09:05 PM
FYI, I remembered the original point of this thread was to get rid of the spoiler bubbles, so let's drop 'em. Anybody who clicks on this thread title and still doesn't want to know what happens after this long is just plain dumb.

Trader Joe
06-28-2012, 09:22 AM
Joe Part 2 -

Also, how can Shepard's mind be the catalyst? The Protheans had the catalyst thousands of years ago. Did they take the Delorean into the future to kidnap Shepard? lol

Also how could Shepard have been indoctrinated? The catalyst (child) clearly states that the Illusive Man was incapable of making this choice because he was indoctrinated. So why is Shepard indoctrinated, but allowed?

Again, it didn't go over my head, it doesn't make sense.

I'm not asking everyone to accept my theory.

Here are my responses to your questions though, Shepard was the catalyst because the reapers picked him, selected him if you will to be the mind of the Human Reaper, I think originally the plan was for the Turians to be the race that was turned into a Sovereign class reaper (the Codex tells us one race from each cycle is turned into a Sovereign class reaper, the rest of the races that are harvested are turned into smaller reapers, like destroyers.) And Saren was to be the person filling Shepard's role. When Shepard killed Saren, the reapers changed their plan and targeted the humans with Shepard taking Saren's place. The Prothean's thought they had figured out the Catalyst, but as we've seen countless times even just in the third game, the Protheans were woefully under prepared to deal with the Reapers. Why should we assume they really knew what the Catalyst was? If they had why did they never fire the crucible? Just my theory though.

Shepard is not yet indoctrinated in the dream state, if you choose control or synthesis, that is when you become indoctrinated. Also why would you trust the child? He is pretty clearly Harbinger, when you shoot him in the new ending it is Harbinger's voice you hear.

I don't mean to say the ending went over everyone's head, clearly it is up for interpretation, but this is how I am choosing to interpret it and I think it is a fairly strong interpretation, JMO

Kegboy
06-28-2012, 12:20 PM
In regards to xB mentioning the writers being shut out, I hadn't heard that, so I went googling around and found the below. To be fair, I'd pretty well checked out by the time this became news. Still nice to put a reason (whether it's true or not) to why everything on Earth is so different from everything that came before.

http://www.gameranx.com/updates/id/5695/article/mass-effect-3-writer-allegedly-slams-controversial-ending/

Trader Joe
06-28-2012, 12:29 PM
It makes sense. That's for sure. I think he makes good points (whether it is real or not).

And I agree with him the Genophage mission is the crowning achievement of the game. That being said I wish we had seen more of the races on earth. You do see them fighting with you, but not on the epic scale it could have been (and I don't remember ever seeing a single Geth even though I saved them and the Quarians). I imagine budget may have played a role in that though (limiting cut scenes).

I think the new endings have a good balance of getting the emotional catharsis so many wanted along with still leaving room to have an intellectual interpretation.

ilive4sports
06-28-2012, 03:16 PM
I wanted more time on Earth. They spent so much time advertising and talking about how the fight has come to Earth, yet you are only there for one battle in London. I think it would have been cool to have more battles on Earth, probably because I was expecting it more from how the game was marketed.

xBulletproof
06-28-2012, 04:32 PM
Joe

Why wouldn't we assume the Protheans knew what the catalyst was? They were the ones who discovered it, without that nobody would have even known a catalyst existed, or what for. Every generation had been woefully inept against the reapers, it was designed that way on purpose. The Protheans fought the reapers for CENTURIES however. That's a lot longer than the current battle would have lasted in the series. Also it was the Protheans discoveries that allowed Shepard to keep the reapers from using the Citadel as a mass relay in the first game to give them any shot at surviving before they even knew what the reapers were. So I'm not sure why the Protheans were woefully unprepared, but the current battle in the game wouldn't be considered much worse when everything Shepard did piggy backed off of the Protheans ideas and discoveries.

The Protheans didn't fire the crucible because it said they ran out of time. They discovered it too late. They didn't have the manpower or resources to pull it off, and they had infighting from indoctrinated Protheans. Which is why they saved all the info in Vigil, the VI at the end of the first game to help future generations. The Protheans were aware of what the reapers were before they ever came through the citadel and destroyed their government. They were arrogant in believing they could handle them, but they were far, far more prepared than the people in Shepards time.

Also, why wouldn't you trust the child? Harbinger never lied to you. He was actually very forthcoming with information and forward. He even directed you to the 3 choices, he didn't mislead you to the idea that there was no choice to be made. Which would have just simply ended in the reapers winning the war.

Also, Saren was pretty clearly indoctrinated, and a pawn of the reapers. Shepard wasn't a pawn or agent of the reapers. I'm not sure how their uses in regards to the reapers correlate at all. So I don't know how you thought they used Shepard to 'replace him' in his role.

That's what annoys me. There is no theory or concept I've ever seen that doesn't have major plot holes involved in reaching the conclusions that come with that particular view point. That's one stupid *** ending.