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Mass Effect 3 Ending Changes Planned

The BioWare Blog has a post from BioWare co-founder Dr. Ray Muzyka confirming that criticism of the ending of Mass Effect 3 has had a massive effect on them, and they will indeed be changing the way the game ends, as they said they might. Here's a bit on their change in plans, and what lead to this point:

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.

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85. Re: Mass Effect 3 Ending Changes Planned Mar 21, 2012, 19:34 Asmo
Parallax Abstraction wrote on Mar 21, 2012, 14:18:
Great, cause listening to whiners on the Internet sets such a great precedent. Either you believe in the work you released or you don't. By capitulating to the whining idiots (I have not yet seen the Mass Effect 3 ending but I can't imagine any ending that would warrant the level of outrage we've seen), you tell people that by screaming loud enough, they can just get whatever they want. Stand by what you made.

I take exception to this.

Yeah, there's a fair amount of hyperbolic frothing at the mouth, but as a long time fan of the series, I really expected the course of the game to give you some dramatically different endings depending on your actions.

Recall Fallout 1 if you will. Simple screenshots with a brief voice over describing the 'fallout' of your actions. It provided symmetry and let you know that your actions had consequences.

Spoiler (video included) to show just how little difference there really is in the endings.

I don't mind an ending that involves Shepard dying, I don't mind bad endings such as the Reapers winning or the Earth getting wiped out. What I felt was missing was a reasonable epilogue where the repercussions of major actions you take (ie. brokering peace between the Quarians and the Geth) are revealed. eg. curing the Krogan genophage might result in a swarm of Krogan's starting a new war, incidentally resulting in Wrex and Eve dying in a coup, so even though the reapers were defeated, the Krogan's plunge the galaxy in to a horrible war.

I would also like to see some sort of exposition on members of the crew, particularly paramours.

Plus there is a difference between giving in to whiners and understanding feedback that indicates general dissatisfaction with one very small but crucial part of the game. I loved 99.99% of the game, the last 15 minutes odd soured the experience for me precisely because the rest was so good. Imagine eating an awesome meal only for the last mouthful of food to be rotten. It ruins the entire experience.

And given the amount of in game scripted moments and cutscenes, I doubt it would have been an extraordinary amount of work to present multiple endings more in tune with the actions of the player throughout the game rather than an arbitrary ending based on your readiness score and paragon/renegade status.
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