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Power Member - Level 10
Oh yeah, unless you've been living under a rock
for the past week, yes, I am going to talk about all the sh*t that has been
going on with the latest and first blockbuster release of the year. Mass Effect
Excuse me for the vulgarity, but this situation
has evolved so much to a point where I just find it absolutely annoying. And
with the fact that nowadays consumers can explode in such a way and complain
and rebel against whoever let them down in their purchase just makes social
networks the perfect and most utterly clusterf*cked, unnecessary place to take
this situation on.
Once again, annoyance takes place on this
century's most abused interfaces.
Now, I haven't finished Mass Effect 3. Hell, I'm
just 4 hours in. Last thing I remember doing was fooling around the Citadel.
Enjoyable game so far, some minor disappointments but that's more of a personal
overview. So far, the $100 spent on this game have been mostly satisfactory.
But the topic of this blog centers around one of
the most criticized and hated endings since, let me think, Red Dead Redemption.
Although Red Dead's case is a lot more different than ME3's (or at least I think so,
since I haven't beaten the latter) but I can testify for Red Dead since I've
beaten that one and I don't think the way the ending was criticized by fans is
in the same context as it's being done with the Mass Effect 3 one.
Honestly, I can't imagine how bad the ending
may be. Everyone's saying the game is completely great until the last moments
of the game. Jesus, they even say the last 20 minutes or so ruin absolutely the
entire series. I can't picture this infamous ending.
But being honest, I kind of expected this in the
end. I knew Mass Effect 3 was going to be one of the most awaited games by the
most hardcore groups inside the gaming community, I trusted Bioware could
deliver a solid game and a better one in contrast to Mass Effect 2. Like I
said, I'm satisfied with my buy, so far so good. Bioware delivered there.
But ever so often different views and
expectations towards the end of a trilogy can be... varied.
When you create, build and support this
universe and story that has captivated millions of fans around, it's a damn
tough road to deliver and satisfy each and every petition from the fans.
Expectations can be, in a big paraphrasing way,
one tough son-of-a-b*tch to handle.
And in gaming, a place where medium is
absolutely different and exclusive from the rest, for developers...
It must be god-damn stressful.
-So very appropiate for the situation.
Once again I say this: I simply can't imagine
how "bad" or controversial the Mass Effect 3 ending might be. Thinking about it frightens me. Just think about it, how often do you see one of the most loved
and respected franchises in a videogame turn into one of the most hated things
ever for one, let's say, misunderstood ending?
BioWare's Casey Hudson stated he wanted the
ending to be memorable. Something people won't be able to erase from their
minds. Well, he surely accomplished that, but I don't think he wanted this
overly "exciting" response from the public, like how he's been getting recently.
But I'm not here to discuss how Mass Effect and
Bioware may or may not have disappointed the fans. I would discuss, and I'd
like to, but with the actual context surrounding me in Mass Effect 3 which
consists of walking endlessly around a space station while buying heart-shaped
boxes of amino-acid chocolates really doesn't help me much in the on-going
You see, gaming as a medium is absolutely
unique. Never has there been such an active exchange of opinions, ideas and
feedback between the capitalist and the consumer. Gaming as an interactive medium
is absolutely unique also. An active narrative and experience is nowhere else
to be found. This makes gaming one of the most loved industries of recent time.
Of course it has its downs. Capitalists always found a way to.
When this one-of-a-kind relationship between
consumer and developer takes place, some irregularities are bound to happen. No
system is ever perfect. And that we're constantly reminded every day by just
taking a look outside.
Consumers can sometimes... exaggerate their needs. People don't complain or call the company until they
found something faulty in the product they purchased. And they want to overvalue their place in the market.
This tends to make gamers ask more than the
company can even handle. They are in their own right to demand and provide
feedback to their favorite series. But all to a point. Of course, no one does
this. You see gamers outright insulting the development and those in charge of
it. You can see them demanding more than than I'd call "human". Gamers
are kind of d*cks sometimes. And I can justify this perfectly with the Mass
Effect 3 controversy.
You're seeing a lot of people insulted
and offended from BioWare's decisions on the last 20 minutes of the game. The
last 20 f*cking minutes of the game! They go out insulting and denigrating all
of the work and love that went behind the making of the game. From an economic
perspective, they lose, because they already paid for it (hehe). But from an
emotional and psychological perspective, this just harms the team behind
BioWare. Just imagine what they must be going on through right now... all of
those months, weeks, those extra hours, those long days without seeing their
We all know BioWare cares and love their fan base. It would be
different if we were talking about other certain companies who certainly don't
show this in any way. But it's BioWare; they show all of their commitment and
love to the fans in every single dialogue spoken and written, gameplay mechanics, detail
and textures in the game.
Remember those spoken Codex entries found throughout
all the game? Jeez, just think about that dedication. And it's all towards the
loving fanbase they have, or had, contemplating the recent outburst of angry
messages and letters to the studio.
Personally, it's shameful, sad and depressing
-I'm proud of this one.
Sometimes, we the gamers, the consumers, don't
always see everything with a clear view. We don't always judge with the right
mind. We are humans, imperfect beings. But there has to be some consideration
taken when it's about criticizing and bashing the work of some one else. One has to
consider absolutely every little thing that goes behind the creation. But let's
face it, more than 95% of this exchange of dialogue is through the internet.
And we all know the internet has never and probably will never be the ideal
place for opinion-sharing.
Sorry If I can't stop emphasizing this, but it
makes me sad seeing how gamers and fans can disrespect and bully BioWare in
this way. To a point, their dislike might be justified. They have bought the 3
entries of the series, they put all of their trust and hopes in BioWare for
delivering a satisfying conclusion to the story and characters they all love,
they have faith in BioWare's work to put a happy ending to all those hours
spent in the Mass Effect games. It's understandable if BioWare made a decision
that was clearly insulting regarding the lore and universe of Mass Effect, but
then again, I can't discuss this because I have not finished the game.
But think about it, if you have finished Mass
Effect 3 and hate the ending, just for this moment, ignore it. Try to remember
all those entertaining hours late at night exploring just "one more inch" of
BioWare's well-constructed universe, all of those laughs and smirks from
BioWare's undeniable sharp sense of humor. All of that, all of those kind words
to BioWare down the sewage just for the final 20 minutes of the conclusion of
the trilogy? Seems hardly ethical.
Of all the people, it's us that know how
BioWare cares for the fans. And for the last time I'm going to bring up
Rockstar Games for a quick example. Rockstar is indubitably one of the
companies that is most loved by gamers, and in return, Rockstar is one of the
most loving companies of the industry. I can't express all of this in a
paragraph, but I can quickly summarize it with one of their most recent titles.
Red Dead Redemption's ending, without spoiling anything for those who haven't
played it, was controversial too. But in a different way, in a good way. Like I
promised, I'm not going to say the ending here, but the final moments of the
game are not only one of the most poetical and memorable scenes in gaming
history, it's one of the most scarring and tragic but realistic ends to the story
of one of the most likeable characters ever. I remember the days where most of
the buyers were wrapping up Red Dead's story. A lot of sad and troubled fans of the
game were asking Rockstar for a change in the ending. Then again, all in a good
Rockstar has always read, listened and cared for the
community. And in return, they came out with quite possibly one of the most
satisfactory, fun and original DLC's for a game I've seen: Red Dead Redemption
Undead Nightmare. And in usual Rockstar fashion, not only do they deliver in
all fronts and end up with one of the most loved expansions around once again
(See: Episodes From Liberty City) they show and repay all of those worrying
questions about the ending of the original game in the ending of Undead
But what I love is how they do it in such an indirect yet obvious
and playful way. I'll just say this mini-spoiler from Undead Nightmare's
achievement/trophy for beating the story, the achievement's name is: "All's Right with the World." If this line is taken in the proper context like the one
I just gave to you, you can see one of the many, many reasons why Rockstar is
one of the most unique and original studios in the world and why I love and
admire them with such a passion to this day. But all of this talk is
something I'm saving up for a very, very special blog for another day.
Wrapping all this up, BioWare's Mass Effect 3
case will surely be one of the most remembered in the history of videogame
But like I've done in most of my blogs when I write them, I try to
reach this persuasive-reflective approach on my texts, to make, you the reader,
actually think about and reflect what's right and what's wrong, what's ethical
and what's wrong regarding the situation.
Mass Effect 3's ending controversy has many
stances from which it can be viewed from. But in the end whichever way this
is interpreted from; there will always be one loser among the crowd.
And the loser in this occasion
unfairly, is BioWare.