The internet is abuzz thanks to controversy regarding Mass Effect 3, the final chapter in BioWare's space epic, and everyone has a big ol' stinky opinion on the matter. We'll get to mine last so no need to worry about any spoilers outside of links, and yes this is me telling you that there will be links with spoilers, before I tell you to. What concerns me more than the ending itself is the absurdly irrational way people on both sides of the line between the industry and fans are reacting. Both sides are being equally childish, both sides are being equally obnoxious. As a community we should find equal controversy in how these needlessly opposing forces have handled themselves and the masses' general inability to tow the line of logic.

The Petitioneers

Yeah, it's not a word, but I felt a clever phonetic twist was in order. Much like Buccaneers, the most irate group on the fan side of the fence is large, organized, localized, and willing to attack an established institution. Their weapon is an internet petition and their target is something they aren't entitled to demand, regardless of whatever tale they wax heroic about over a bottle of rum. These people have positioned their digital ships off BioWare's shore and even now lay siege there.

Fanciful writing aside, I can't say I disagree with their core complaint. As a loving fan of the Mass Effect series I was disappointed by the lot handed to me at the end of Mass Effect 3. Even more so when I learned that the ending is supposedly not the one planned before lead writer Drew Karpyshyn shifted focus to The Old Republic and finally out of video games all together. As fans of a series they have every right to be dissatisfied with the ending, or any particular facet of the work. The act of purchasing the product grants them the inherent right to judge it as they see fit. So right now you may be wondering just where I take fault with these people if I agree with their motivation. It comes down simply to their actions.

The phrase - "Just because you can, doesn't mean you should." - comes to mind in relation to this issue. Just because these gamers have the ability to petition BioWare, does not mean they should. In actually their displeasure, which they are rightfully experiencing, is not justification for their demands. The right to pass judgement does not imply the right to demand arbitrary change. Mass Effect 3 is not a broken game, on the contrary it is an excellent game with stellar writing up until the point that is under contention. The ending of the game may be less than satisfactory but it is not missing. This misguided sense of a good being done on behalf of the fans occasionally annoying and at times a disservice to the scores of people, not associated with the petition, that it claims to speak for without permission or support.

Regardless of your position, gamers are starting to develop a disturbing habit of making foolhardy demands of the people who make their games.