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16. Re: Mass Effect 3 Community Demonstration Apr 25, 2012, 01:20 Crustacean Soup
 
StingingVelvet wrote on Apr 25, 2012, 00:29:
Can't play this until June. Really eager to see if the ending is as bad as all the fucking press coverage makes it seem.

So, I just beat the game. The ending was not good. Trying to avoid spoilers: the tone/style didn't match the rest of the series (okay, it's an ending, I get that it's going to be different, that's not what I mean). I was kind of not expecting too much given all the coverage, but I expected it to be mostly overblown. Some of it is, but not all of it at all.

If you want analogous endings, I'm thinking of other SF that sort of petered out at the end: the later Foundation and Ender's Game books, Battlestar Galactica... At least in ME3's case, it's only the last few minutes; the rest of the game, and even the early part of the climax are pretty badass.

And now, not avoiding spoilers (secret text):

Everything up until the Catalyst comes into play is awesome. Then it just gets all 'what the shit just happened'.

The Reapers taking the essence of advanced civilizations was already established. Their doing so to save that essence from being destroyed by synthetics is crazy. The Catalyst says AI always eventually rebels, but he's not concerned that the Reapers are going to rebel against him? And what about the fact that there are no evil organic-killing AI in the galaxy in this cycle, aside from the Reapers themselves? The Geth are pretty peaceful until they decided to ask for Reaper help in order to prevent their own destruction, and even then Shep can get them back as allies; EDI bonded with organics. AIs being misunderstood people was a major theme of the series; they're the series' true aliens. Shepard never questions this; Shepard questions less crazy things at every point in the series.

The Catalyst says that the crucible proves the Reapers are no longer sufficient. How? Again, Shep never questions this, it's never explained.

The "Destroy" choice is crazy from the perspective of the Catalyst. It says that the crucible has provided it with new options, and this is one... it never had a kill switch before? Furthermore, it's certain new synthetics will be created and will kill all organics, apparently violating its whole point of existence, so why even provide the option? Again, no explanation, no questioning.

It's also crazy from Shepard's position. The Mass Relays are going to be blown up. The Reapers have the best FTL and probably the only chance of rebuilding them, as well as providing general reconstruction assistance (it's going to be damn hard to rebuild without the relays), and Shepard has the option of turning that away? Never mind genociding the Geth and killing EDI. Does it kill VI (again, Shep asks nothing)? Other machines? That can't be any good for the reconstruction effort.

The control option makes no sense. The Reapers are supposed to be true AI, nations unto themselves, how is the control option guaranteed to work? And why does the Catalyst trust it to Shepard? Why does the Catalyst need the crucible to do this? I guess if it works, it's a not a terrible choice for Shep, but it's kind of a boring and un-foreshadowed way of ending the series.

The Synthesis option is maybe the only one that makes any sense from both Shep and the Catalyst's position, but it's crappy SF. In a series where they took pains to make everything sound at least kind of plausible (at least, if eezo existed), and took pains to overexplain every science-fictiony concept in the codex, the ending turns to magic. This is why I mentioned Ender's Game, BSG, and Foundation, because they all did this at the end. It just feels like a cheat. I didn't think I was playing some space fantasy (space new age?) game, but that's suddenly what it is.

And why was the Normandy apparently in a Mass Relay conduit at the end? Or was it in FTL? How were the crew members who probably should have died on Earth, on board the ship? What was up with that?

Shep's death isn't even close to an issue. I've heard people whine about that, but I can't understand why.


Phew, had to nerd out there. Not upset or about to nerd rage out, definitely not going to "protest" the ending to a damn game, it was just disappointing is all.

I'll have to see what I think about the ending DLC, but I have a feeling I still won't like it, considering that the problems I had weren't really of the "my decisions didn't matter" or "they didn't explain what happened after" variety.

This comment was edited on Apr 25, 2012, 02:24.
 
 
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