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Muzyka, listen to the fans!

By: Anthony Velez 

I honestly can’t say that I’m mad or angry with Mass Effect 3′s ending, but I’m definitely confused.  I felt that it left me hanging and didn’t give the franchise much closure.

I’m a huge fan of the Mass Effect series.  I’ve played through Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2 multiple times (and on both 360 and PS3 in the case of the latter), so as soon as I was able to pre-order Mass Effect 3, I was first in line.  When ME3 was finally released, I spent a huge chunk of time playing through the single player campaign. I haven’t really gotten into the game’s multiplayer that much though.

I fought my way through enemies, enjoyed the story and made some pretty difficult decisions on my journey to the end of the game.  When I finally got there I literally thought to myself, “Are you serious? What just happened?”

Plenty of gamers are angry, upset, and/or confused like myself as to why ME3 ended the way it did.  Ray Muzyka, co-founder of BioWare, listened to fans of the Mass Effect series when they expressed their disappointment of the ending of the series.  Muzyka announced that his team will be remaking the ending of ME3 to please it’s fans.

I sure do hope that this remake acts as their ‘saving grace’ for the game.  Mass Effect 3 is an excellent video game with a bad ending.  I hope Muzyka  listens to the game’s fans and this new ending finally brings the franchise some closure.

Who needs closure? Not me

By: Perry Jackson

I beat Mass Effect 3 before the whole hub-bub about the terrible ending everyone keeps talking about. When I did, I saw no problems with it. Does every game have to end perfectly with no loose ends? It makes sense for a franchise like Metal Gear Solid (that’s what they did with MGS4), and it provided one of the best endings to a series, ever.

But the Mass Effect franchise ends on a somber note. Its finale is mysterious and leaves you wondering what it really means. Gamers are simply an entitled feeling group and think the series is written for them. And yes, BioWare make entertainment for gamers but the Mass Effect franchise is still their creative endeavor in the end.

I don’t need closure and when you think about it, does any big finale really need it?

A new ending compromises creative integrity

By: Chris Goodchild

The ending to my Shepard’s story was fitting and felt right for his story progression. The night I finished the game, I wasn’t bothered by it in the slightest. The day after, questions started to arise.

What about that? What happened to this? Where were they the whole time? The ending left so many questions unanswered. The more I thought about it, the more it bugged me. I wanted to know what was going on in this virtual universe that I care so deeply about.

After reading through the digital release of The Final Hours of Mass Effect 3, and seeing what Bioware had to say about the ending, I feel like their goal of getting the community talking, thinking, guessing and discussing has half succeeded and half failed. On one hand, people are theorising, pulling the endings apart and seeing what’s hidden within them. On the other, people are moaning, they’re upset and they’re hurt that the characters they love haven’t been given the send off they feel they deserved.

The problem behind the idea of Bioware going back and changing their finale is that it undermines the creative and artistic vision of both this game and any future games which end without a satisfactory finale deemed (decided by the fans of course). I worry for the future of game endings simply because of Bioware’s response to the backlash. That said, it’s arguable that the vision was already undermined when they went to rewrite the ending due to leaks late in the development.

I personally hope that the DLC was always actually coming and that this has all been part of a huge idea that went haywire. There have been theories, ideas and suggestions seeded throughout the universe and the ending itself, suggesting that the finales we’ve all seen are not quite what they seem to be. In many ways, this theory fits from a gameplay a story point of view. If this theory that’s become very popular over the internet is true, Bioware may inadvertently be overwriting one of the cleverest things ever done in storytelling via Games.

With all that said, I still believe that the ending I got fit perfectly fit with my Shepard’s story. I chose it because it was what he would have done.

That’s the beauty of a Role Playing Game, you can’t blame anyone but yourself for the results of your actions.

Unless you’re a gamer, of course.

  1. roger says:

    You know what guys, I was OK with the ending. Could’ve it been much better? YES, of course. I think I am more upset about the fact that you save and gather all these war assets to fight the reapers only to never see them in action during the final sequences. I still think Bioware pulled off an epic story with very likable characters. The DLC to change the ending is welcome, but it was sad to see how angry people got because of the original ending. Their original story worked for me, but of course we all want to see Shepard and Miranda have children or something.

    • I would have LOVED to see more than just a few ships being piloted by certain races in the end cut-scenes. I was hoping I’d get to see a group of Krogan fighting alongside me or A Rachni swarm taking on the Reaper forces on Earth or something. Stuff like what they showed in the trailers just before the game was released. A lot of this story was explored in the war room through text rather than through cut-scenes or dialogue. I think this was a much bigger failing than the endings. Not directly showing us the consequences of our choices but leaving them hidden in the background. It was all there, you just had to read it and hear about it.

  2. coolman229 says:

    I can’t stand this argument of “artistic integrity.” It makes it sound like Bioware can do whatever the hell it wants and it’s totally cool. Now when it comes to endings, I’ve never been as mad as Mass Effect 3′s. I’ve seen some pretty lame/bad/poorly written endings. LOST for example pissed me off because I had invested years of my life to discover the mysteries of The Island. The writers claimed that they would answer all/most of the questions, and we were treated to a giant middle finger. Then they make a complete 180 and say that it was never about the mysteries, it was about the characters. That was a load of crap, and pisses me off. They broke their promise, but they never promised a personal story. The story of LOST was theirs the entire time. The beef that people have with Mass Effect 3′s ending was that we were promised that the decisions that we made in all three games would affect the ending, and that we would have 16 different endings. We were promised a personal story that we could claim was our own. We were then treated to a deus ex machina ending that railroads you into three choices no matter what you did. It didn’t matter if you chose Ashley or Kaiden in Mass Effect 1. It didn’t matter if people died in the suicide mission in Mass Effect 2. It didn’t matter if you got all that bar full in Mass Effect 3. We had Shepard die and destroy the Mass Relays, which would mean that all life is pretty much dead. Unless what was established in The Arrival was all a lie. Then Joker flees from the fight and crash lands. I just can’t believe that Bioware would crap all over fans with that ending. There is a very good reason to change the ending. Artistic integrity is just an excuse to say that Bioware can have its “artistic” (ie, poorly written) ending that was supposed to close the trilogy end in a cliff hanger. I usually cite Heavy Rain as a game that had a bunch of plot holes and ridiculous twists, but at least it gave you more endings than Mass Effect 3. I mean goodness gracious! Even Silent Hill 2 has more varied endings!

    • “It makes it sound like Bioware can do whatever the hell it wants and it’s totally cool.”

      Well, yes. They can. It’s their game and their creation. They can do whatever they want and it’s fine because it’s their game. I don’t get how people don’t understand this.

      That said, I’m still convinced that this is not the end for Mass Effect 3. I kinda always felt like it wasn’t the end. I remember hearing the different endings number, I remember hearing about all these hooks they’ve got in place to tie everything up. The ending we were given wasn’t the planned ending. It was never meant to end like this. It was tweaked at the last minute because of leaks and tweaks. I’m fine if this IS it, life goes on. But it doesn’t fit with the rest of the series and I really want to hope that was the point of this ending.

      Someone in these comments linked to the Indoctrination theory. I really REALLY want to believe that this was ALWAYS their plan with the tweaked endings. Bioware are clever enough to come up with a quick temporary ending to tide over the fans until they can finish the truth. All that has to happen for this to be possible is someone at the brainstorming session saying Indoctrination. This allows them to finish up 6 endings and get straight to work on answering all the questions the fans will want to know.

      If this isn’t the case, I can understand some of the disappointment. But if all that matters is really the ending to a story, why even bother with the rest of the game? I got more than I wanted out of the gameplay of Mass Effect 3. I honestly don’t mind that the ending didn’t answer all my questions. It’s let me come up with much better ways of explaining away the issues in my head.

      My issue with the artistic integrity isn’t so much with Bioware on this one. I’m aware that this isn’t what they originally planned on to end the series. I am only worried about how THIS change will affect other games in the future. I don’t want to see people later down the line complaining that a game didn’t end how they wanted it to only to point at Bioware and say “They changed their ending for me, why won’t you?”

  3. If only Bioware had this flow chart hanging around and actually used it. Things may have been better:
    http://gon.cdn.on.net/screenshots/a/0/7843/2012-03-23/QR3lS.jpg

  4. Abhishek Indoria says:

    Why doesn’t someone make an ending in which the character you’re romancing kills you, saying, “You’re too dangerous to live.” People would like that ,won’t they?

    • Anthony Velez says:

      You know what? That would actually fit in my game since I played the Renegade role for the majority of the game….haha

  5. Matt says:

    SPOILER:

    I would like to introduce you to the indoctrination theory:

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

    I myself was a upset with the ending and felt it was pretty bad and then I saw the video and it makes complete sense. To say the least, I ended up with a “I see what you did there” face. Bioware, those crafty sons of guns. Of course the only bad thing if it’s true is that we will have to pay to buy the real ending (I smell EA) on top of what we already paid for the game but it just makes me so much happier about the game if it’s true. I don’t think they’re changing their vision, more of just extending the story. Of course with Shepard’s story done with, what else would Bioware do for DLC other than map packs for the multi-player? Extra missions such as “Overlord” or “Shadow Broker” would seem a little trivial to me.

    Well this ended up being longer than I anticipated.

  6. Curtis says:

    Chris. The ending is not something shepard would have done, he would have thought about everyone it would have sought an alternative to the situation ext, ext. what bioware did was take away the any idea that anything you did mattered. in the end the butt mud hits the fan. I did every side quest and pretty much got as much support as you could get plus got my galactic readiness up to 100%. I’m still left with the same three decisions/outcomes as someone who breezed through the story and didn’t do anything he didn’t have to. the fact that I went full paragon doesn’t matter ether, a full renegade would have the same ending! The entire franchise is based off the idea of choice and the consequences of said choice. and in the end your left with a, b, and c.

    So no, I’m not entitled to a different ending, and yes it’s Bioware’s creation. But if they ever want another penny out of me or 1,000s of other fans, then they will amend their mistake and extend an olive branch to those of us who have supported this story for the last 6 years.

    • Curtis says:

      *would have hurt and sought….

    • “The ending is not something shepard would have done”

      That isn’t for you to say. :/ It’s what MY Shep would have done. I know this because I was channelling my own idea of Commander Shepard and my own version of the character into this final choice. I spent about 10 minutes sitting there at the end working out the possible outcomes of the three choices. Shep was faced with three options and I had my Shepard pick the option that fitted him most. It is something MY Shepard would have done.

      I also did every side quest and got my Galactic Readiness up to 100%. I also played the iOS game and got even more added to my readiness. I didn’t do this purely to get the perfect ending though. I did it because I wanted to have fun and enjoy the game. The ending I got didn’t take away from the hours I have spent in the Mass Effect world. NOTHING can take that away. The fact that we all want to know even more shows just how much the world has touched everyone. I can understand the disappointment in the lack of closure given. I can’t understand the people who’re saying that the talented developers at Bioware won’t get any more money from them because the way they ended their game wasn’t good enough.

      And for the record, you aren’t given the same choices or outcomes. The third option has to be unlocked and the other two actually have vastly different outcomes if you take the time to look into them. It doesn’t state these outright but the implications are certainly there.

  7. Mark says:

    Perry’s taste in games really sucks if he thinks MGS4 had one of the best endings ever.

    • Perry says:

      Yup I have horrible taste in games, you’re right. But on a serious note, MGS4 gave me closure ever since playing MGS in 1998 and having those 10 years with 2 and 3.

      I get your opinion though, so I’ll just keep playing sucky games (Voltron on XBLA kinda sucks).

  8. Ziggy says:

    To the authors,

    Just a few points.

    1. Publishers have been forcing developers to change endings for years.
    2. Video games leave the realm of being purely artistic creations when they enter a market. They are created for profit.
    3. I believe most of these people behind this movement are not “Demanding”
    nor feel they are “entitled” to anything. They are simply telling
    Bioware : Hey it would be really great if you guys did.

    Additionally here is a video that should help you to understand why people are upset. Watch only if you have time, as is long. Spoilers!

    http://angryjoeshow.com/2012/03/top-10-reasons-we-hate-mass-effect-3s-ending/

    • D says:

      Very true, once you start selling for profit its no longer just art its a product. A product is supposed to satisfy the customers.

      We will all still play mass effect even if they don’t change anything we just think it would be great if they did.

    • Abhishek Indoria says:

      Again, different people, different opinions. You really can’t blame anyone.

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