Mass Effect 3 SPOILER THREAD: LOTS OF SPECULATION FROM EVERYONE

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If by survives you mean stranded on an alien planet then you're right. If you want to take solace in that then by all means. Maybe Shep can save them with space magic in future paid DLC.
As I said before in my bigger post, I wouldn't have minded more closure with these characters but they are alive, so Shepard succeeded. As I said before it's a little weird to me how when the Citadel explodes millions die, and the lack of Mass Relays sucks, but FTL is presumably still possible. They're stranded on an alien planet, sure - it's very easy to invent story contrivances to bring them out of there, and people like Miranda, Jacob, Jack etc are still alive.

Across the course of the games now the only one who couldn't die was Liara and James. They were never going to leave it particularly open as they're getting to the point where with each subsequent game the choices people have made get more granular and soon it'll become too complex. They needed to reset, and I get that. I'm a little sad that there wasn't a 'happily ever after' ending for Shepard, but I understand.

Given how he's been through impossible circumstances, it was incredibly sad to see Shepard alone, his N7 armour literally melted against his skin in places, at the end. That was, I think, the interesting thing about the ending for me - I'd always consider what other crew members thought, pursue every dialogue option to find out more context... and here there was none. Just a stark choice, with no help - no Tali or Liara or Garrus to chip in an opinion, and definitely no blue or red text to indicate which was the 'good' one. It made the final choice way more... significant feeling.

Looks like we have a Galactic dark age then! :p

It's hard to imagine a game in the Mass Effect universe post ME3 that will ever have enemies that have the urgency and threat the Reapers have.
Feel like the way forward here due to the endings is to - sadly - go back, not forward. First Contact, Krogan Rebellions, etc.
 
It's dumb insofar originally you were playing a cool captain hero dude and in the end you are the space messiah chosen one. I mean don't we have enough of those running around in video games blowing up huge alien superstructures and being humorless super soldiers? What's the point of being able to sleep with aliens and get drunk and punch reporters if you're just going to be a savior in the end.
 
On second thought, my last post was probably too many words when ME 3's endings are all the same except with different colors.

That said, the choices those endings are supposed to represent (destroy, control, merge) are interesting. Problem with many games is they keep on ramping up the threat level until the authors have written themselves into a corner. MGS did the same except instead of bumping up the threat level it was the number of conspiracies.

So, given the situation they were in, how could Bioware have possibly given a satisfying ending to ME 3? Or at least made it less unsatisfying?
I'm pissed that you aren't really given a choice. You're given three endings that are basically the same edgy grimdark stuff. My beef is this: why can't I save the Normandy? Why don't I have the option to preserve the Mass Effect relays. Why can't I have endings that actually reflect how prepared I was? Why can't I have an ending where everybody wins and Shepard and his/her LI live happily ever after? Why can't I have an ending where Shepard fails and the Reapers end up harvesting the universe and a new cycle starts? Why can't I have an ending where Shepard agrees with The Illusive Man and allows him to take over the Reapers? Why can't I have more CHOICES?

Bioware always claimed that ME was about choices and that there is no real conon in the series. Yet in ME3, they're more than willing to shove down your throat their canon (The Normandy getting stranded, the Mass Relays getting destroyed no matter the ending, certain characters dying no matter what your action were in ME3 or previous games). I don't mind that the endings we have are all grimdark, however, I do mind that there's no real choice.
 
As I said before in my bigger post, I wouldn't have minded more closure with these characters but they are alive, so Shepard succeeded. As I said before it's a little weird to me how when the Citadel explodes millions die, and the lack of Mass Relays sucks, but FTL is presumably still possible. They're stranded on an alien planet, sure - it's very easy to invent story contrivances to bring them out of there, and people like Miranda, Jacob, Jack etc are still alive.

Across the course of the games now the only one who couldn't die was Liara and James. They were never going to leave it particularly open as they're getting to the point where with each subsequent game the choices people have made get more granular and soon it'll become too complex. They needed to reset, and I get that. I'm a little sad that there wasn't a 'happily ever after' ending for Shepard, but I understand.

Given how he's been through impossible circumstances, it was incredibly sad to see Shepard alone, his N7 armour literally melted against his skin in places, at the end. That was, I think, the interesting thing about the ending for me - I'd always consider what other crew members thought, pursue every dialogue option to find out more context... and here there was none. Just a stark choice, with no help - no Tali or Liara or Garrus to chip in an opinion, and definitely no blue or red text to indicate which was the 'good' one. It made the final choice way more... significant feeling.
I'm not too fussed that the ending wasn't happy. It's disappointing they did it that way when they didn't need to. It's dismaying that in two out of three endings Shepard dies and regardless your team mates are all pretty much doomed. It's bewildering how Bioware thought that three endings that are all pretty much exactly the same (and all bad) is acceptable. But I'm not too fussed overall.

If it was coherent that all wouldn't actually be a problem. I would even be willing to overlook the plotholes and the lore that was flushed down the toilet if it just made sense. Sadly the whole thing is just batshit insane. The product of writers who literally could not think of anything else but to copy-paste from everything they could find with complete disregard for how it could actually fit in Mass Effect. Shaq-fu has a more coherent plot than this trainwreck.

The fallout from this game, as you may have noticed (mostly on BSN for now) has and probably always will focus on the fact there is no happy ending in this story. That's fair enough, I guess. Shepard deserved a happy ending and people really kinda wanted just to see him/her and their love interest together afterward, a reward for their dedication to the series. That's what Mass Effect is to most, a dating simulator. Guns and cutscenes. The plot was always a bit bonkers, but it was easy to ignore because that the series had other stronger suits. This time round they try and tell an epic tale of DAT SHEPARD so we can sit through Grandpa's bizarre and disconcerting monologue about heroes and alien procreation.

It didn't have to be this way, but Bioware insisted on it. As I wrote earlier in the thread, the real masters of your destiny aren't the Reapers, but Bioware. There's no real choice at all here. If there was, then you COULD save the Normandy and Shepard, even at the cost of the Mass Relays and live somewhat happily ever after. The option is never given. The options given amount to the exact same thing because Bioware willed it that way. So in the end, you ask yourself, what's the point? It's no less tight and confined than any other RPG I've ever played and they had the bonus of not being so contrived and horrific.

That just serves to highlight how ill-conceived and lazily implemented this game was from scratch.
 
So, given the situation they were in, how could Bioware have possibly given a satisfying ending to ME 3? Or at least made it less unsatisfying?
Easily, in my opinion:

1) I would have offered a special 'perfect' ending, even if it's ridiculously hard to get. I don't have anything against dark or bittersweet endings, but considering the genre we're dealing with here and the themes in the story, it would seem appropriate to make this an option. Yes, it's cliche but then so many elements of the story already are. Again, look at the genre here.

Though there are rumours floating around of a New Game Plus ending...

2) Actually allow the player to appreciate the ending by making it clear what was achieved. Take the 'Synthesis' ending for example. Bizarre space magic aside (which is really fucking awful), how is it possible to appreciate or understand the ending when it's not at all clear exactly what happened and what the implications are.

I'm not saying you can't leave some viewer interpretation in there (my own take on the 'Destroy' ending from what I saw is that it's not quite so bleak as it might seem at face value), but there still needs to be clarity on what happened.

3) When you're ending a trilogy/story arc, at least give some closure. ME3 is at best practically a cliffhanger ending, and given that it is meant to be an end, this seems to defy established storytelling techniques.


Additional point: mysterious motivations can work well for your antagonists. Revealing the mystery is dangerous, because if you drop the ball at that point then it causes a great deal of damage. When done well it enhances the story, but Bioware dropped the ball.
 
With Dragon Age 2 I knew EABioware went to shit.

My buddies begged me to buy SWTOR and I resisted for over a month before caving, telling them that EABioware were shit. Buying that game was literally gutwrenching, and of course the game is shit.

One of them said to me today "I just bought Mass Effect 3" I laughed at him, without even having played it yet, and said good luck with that because EABioware is shit.

And this... wow. This just cements something I didn't really need cemented anyway.

Fuck you EABioware. The one thing I maybe would have played this game to see, and that's how you treat it? Fuck you.
 
Looks like we have a Galactic dark age then! :p

It's hard to imagine a game in the Mass Effect universe post ME3 that will ever have enemies that have the urgency and threat the Reapers have.
I don't believe a future antagonist needs to be anywhere near the same level of menace as the Reapers. A more condensed story revolving around a chase (pro or ant) could still be very satisfying.

Honestly, I just want to play as Shepard's and Liara's daughter getting chased by half-synthetic extremists with a twisted ideology who believe killing the offspring will bring them peace. It be like ME1 all over again.
 
Just finished it. What a monumentally disappointing ending to an otherwise great series. Went with the control ending, thinking that destroying the Reapers would destroy the mass relays as well. NOPE! They get destroyed no matter what you do.

Why the hell was Joker flying away from the giant mass relay explosion, shouldn't he have been near Earth? Does that mean that everyone else in space near earth got royally fucked?

What is this shit with them landing on some planet?
 
I don't get how Ashley being modelled after a transexual fits with everything else, but it gets the point across.

Didn't they say it'd be possible for the Reapers to win? From the looks of it it's no longer the case, which is funny since that'd probably be the least disappointing ending. Is there even a final boss this time?

Overall, though, I don't know how some people can be surprised. BioWare hasn't been the same in a long time, and I consider the fact they did manage some good scenes here a surprise. The set up they had, it was obvious only a Deus Ex Machina was gonna solve the plot. And seeing the way BioWare had been handling the franchise, turning Shepard into Space Jesus was so evident it's the name of the OT (and they must have probably tapped each other in the back after "The Shepard"). Hell, I consider the grim ending for all the party members the biggest surprise of all. The plot holes some people have mentioned though, that's low even for them.

As far as I care, the Reaper threat ended when Sovereign blew up.
 
Can we get a brief list of some of the plot holes left by Mass Effect 3?
As far as I know, the biggest one is that the whole point of the Reapers is to wipe out organics before they can create synthetics that wipe out organics. The only way organics get to have that technology is because the Reapers themselves hand it to them.
 
The Tali picture thing is hilarious, yet sad at the same time. I know a bunch of characters in the series are based off models or their VAs' appearances, but that at least involved more effort than a lazy photoshop of a stock photo.
 
^^^ That's a great idea, actually! It would really tug the heartstrings.

The biggest problem with ME3 is that it actually tries to explain everything.

That's what creates the plotholes, and then "solves" them through a typical Deus Ex machina. Or nanomachines, in this case.
ME 3 has nanomagic? This game just gets better and better.

Didn't they say it'd be possible for the Reapers to win? From the looks of it it's no longer the case, which is funny since that'd probably be the least disappointing ending. Is there even a final boss this time?
The Reapers win much like how in the ending of Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End the crew of the Flying Dutchman wins because instead of being defeated or having their purpose taken away from them, Orlando Bloom becomes King Dutchman and rules over their undead fleet of misery and death. From what I understand, that's pretty much the Control ending. That's right, one of ME 3's endings is basically a knock-off of POTC 3.
 
So this game just went to being a great game that I could not wait to start another playthru of to being a game I will never touch again.

Thanks alot, ending.
 
Shouldn't the catalyst look like and be voiced by the squad member you decided to sacrifice in ME1? why
the fucking kid
?
That's what I would have figured too, since you never actually see them die and Sovereign was on his way over there, which was the reason you needed to hurry the fuck up and nuke the place in the first place.
(I even posted this in the ME3 thread)

It would have made sense if Sovereign had left something behind, but that was apparently dismissed or something.

Spoilertagged for the unlucky fools that click the wrong thread.

ME 3 has nanomagic? This game just gets better and better.
Space magic, nano magic, whatever. It's there.
 
The Reapers win much like how in the ending of Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End the crew of the Flying Dutchman wins because instead of being defeated or having their purpose taken away from them, Orlando Bloom becomes King Dutchman and rules over their undead fleet of misery and death. From what I understand, that's pretty much the Control ending. That's right, one of ME 3's endings is basically a knock-off of POTC 3.
Pfff, such bullshit. I wanted Sovereign's bros to get their station back.

The Catalyst could've been voiced by just about any dead party member and it would make more sense.

"Shepard."
"Catalyst."
"Shepard."
"Catalyst."
 
Mass Effect also borrows liberally from Star Control II:

Wikipedia said:
The player begins the game as a commander of the Precursor starship, who returns to Earth to find it enslaved by the Ur-Quan. It is discovered that the rest of the humans' allies in the war against the Ur-Quan have either been eradicated, put under a slave shield, or put into service as Ur-Quan battle thralls. As the player progresses, it is revealed that the Ur-Quan are fighting an internecine war with the Kohr-Ah, a subspecies of Ur-Quan who believes in eradicating all life in the galaxy, as opposed to enslaving it. The winner of this war gains access to Sa-Matra, a Precursor starship with unparalleled power. The player eventually destroys the Sa-Matra and escapes at the last moment, unconscious. When the player awakes, he finds that the enslaved Earth is free again. At the end of the game, it is revealed that this is all a retelling from the player to his grandchildren.
 
Now that I've had some time since the end of my playthrough, I think I can express how I feel with this sentance :

I am not playing a videogame only to feel depressed at the end.

Seriously. I know some people think "Oh, but Shepard dying was the only logical way" and so on and so forth, "the galaxy is at war, sacrifices to be made"...yes, yes.

But I'm playing a game, I expect fun and catharsis at the end of it all. I don't want a "serious epic story realistic doom and gloom". Hell, see Mass Effect 2 in that regard ; the odds were overwhelming, tough times, but Shepard and his whole crew can make it out intact at the end.

Here? No such thing. Shepard will die. Anderson will die. Plenty of people will die.

And then I see on youtube that Tali can commit suicide if you rushed through the mission and did not get enough cookie point for the blue or red option? Seriously? Luckily I did all the sidemissions before, but...really? It's just fucked up.

The whole tone of the game, in retrospect, is disturbing. And while the gameplay may be top notch, Mass Effect 3 ultimately fails in delivering emotional catharsis.

It may barely affect some people, but for me, this right there is the reason why I will remember with bitter distaste the end of the could-have-been-grandiose trilogy in the coming years.
 
Good posts from Hix and Photolysis. I agree with most of your criticisms.

I was thinking of something for the series. Most people seem to like the small stories bioware does, it's just the overarching story that sucks. So I was just thinking if mass effect had been like a police game. So like la noir in space. Story would just be Shepard becoming a specter, then going around sloving space mysteries. That way you have all the good, short arcs, and the overall could just be grounded in something like a smuggling cartel or something.
Completely agree, I wish Bioware had gone with something smaller-scale. I hate how games feel the need to tie every important plot in a game into some overarching conspiracy, particularly when these conspiracies don't hold under scrutiny.

This series would have been much, much better without the Reapers. The political subplots between the various races stand well enough alone. There is no reason you have to lean so heavily on such a tired trope.
 
On a side note, how can the Catalyst-Citadel-Reapers destroy all synthetic life like the geth or human-created AI? Like what makes all synthetic life distinct from organics? Is this more space magic nonsense?

Also why didn't the precursor races just make the Reapers destroy the synthetic life created by organic races instead of destroying those organic races wouldn't it make more sense to create a race of organic-protectors instead of oh no, I've gone cross-eyed
 
Now that I've had some time since the end of my playthrough, I think I can express how I feel with this sentance :

I am not playing a videogame only to feel depressed at the end.

Seriously. I know some people think "Oh, but Shepard dying was the only logical way" and so on and so forth, "the galaxy is at worth, sacrifices to be made"...yes, yes.

But I'm playing a game, I expect fun and catharsis at the end of it all. I don't want a "serious epic story realistic doom and gloom". Hell, see Mass Effect 2 in that regard ; the odds were overwhelming, tough times, but Shepard and his whole crew can make it out intact at the end.

Here? No such thing. Shepard will die. Anderson will die. Plenty of people will die.

And then I see on youtube that Tali can commit suicide if you rushed through the mission and did not get enough cookie point for the blue or red option? Seriously? Luckily I did all the sidemissions before, but...really? It's just fucked up.

The whole tone of the game, in retrospect, is disturbing. And while the gameplay may be top notch, Mass Effect 3 ultimately fails in delivering emotional catharsis.

It may barely affect some people, but for me, this right there is the reason why I will remember with bitter distaste the end of the could-have-been-grandiose trilogy in the coming years.
It was pretty obvious what they were going with when they did the femshep contest, given the whole "these wounds, they will not heeeaaaaal" appearance.
 
On a side note, how can the Catalyst-Citadel-Reapers destroy all synthetic life like the geth or human-created AI? Like what makes all synthetic life distinct from organics? Is this more space magic nonsense?

Also why didn't the precursor races just make the Reapers destroy the synthetic life created by organic races instead of destroying those organic races wouldn't it make more sense to create a race of organic-protectors instead of oh no, I've gone cross-eyed
Bingo. If the Reapers are capable of destroying synthetic life in an instant through space magic, then why does this problem even exist? Can't they just do that whenever synthetics go too far?
 
this video is hilarious thanks for the post bro
meh.

On a side note, how can the Catalyst-Citadel-Reapers destroy all synthetic life like the geth or human-created AI? Like what makes all synthetic life distinct from organics? Is this more space magic nonsense?

Also why didn't the precursor races just make the Reapers destroy the synthetic life created by organic races instead of destroying those organic races wouldn't it make more sense to create a race of organic-protectors instead of oh no, I've gone cross-eyed
MAGNETS
 
Bingo. If the Reapers are capable of destroying synthetic life in an instant through space magic, then why does this problem even exist? Can't they just do that whenever synthetics go too far?
You wouldn't even need the Reapers when you have already created the Keepers - they could be programmed to press the synthetic mass murder button, but wouldn't be affected by it, and all of the races of the galaxy could take thousands of years and they still wouldn't figure out their purpose.
Actually, why isn't the magic beam simply firing at all times? You know, just to be safe. The organics would probably just assume that synthetic life isn't meant to be, since this "technology" can make galactic-scale changes in the blink of an eye. Oh, space magic. Is there anything you can't do?
 
It doesn't even seem consistent. The Citadel races' fear of AI was always an interesting side note. Sure in ME 2 it showed that there was the potential for organics and synthetics to get along (EDI, Legion), but it's not like the races were all in love with synthetic life and pursuing them to dangerous postorganic levels. So being attacked by a race obsessed with preventing organics from Going Too Far with developing synthetic life seems kind of thematically jarring. Bioware probably didn't originally plan on this angle becoming the reason for why the galaxy is getting attacked.
 
So I went to pick this up today but I just couldn't bring myself to buy it. I probably shouldn't have watched the endings on YT, but I'm actually glad I did as I can now put the money towards GoT on BR and Kingdoms of Amulur which I wanted to pick up after the demo but decided to buy this instead.

This series started off as one of the best of the gen for me, then the sequel came out and I lost all interest, but then Shadow Broker managed to reignite a small flame of hope and now the final part of the trilogy and I can even be arsed to buy it and play it through.

:(
 
It just popped in my head.

The Thane vs Kai Leng fight scene. What the hell? How many wrong is there in that scene?

Thane not shooting Kai Leng when he was on the ground and letting him pick back his sword? Thane running toward Kai Leng despite Thane having a pistol suited to long range combat and Kai Leng having...you know, a sword?

And Shepard & company not doing ANYTHING behind?

Oh, well. Spacemagic.
 
It just popped in my head.

The Thane vs Kai Leng fight scene. What the hell? How many wrong is there in that scene?

Thane not shooting Kai Leng when he was on the ground and letting him pick back his sword? Thane running toward Kai Leng despite Thane having a pistol suited to long range combat and Kai Leng having...you know, a sword?

And Shepard & company not doing ANYTHING behind?

Oh, well. Spacemagic.
After Deception, I cannot look at Kai Leng and take him seriously in any way or form. His interaction with TIM also seems very 'deception-like' to be honest.
 
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