Updates from March, 2012 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • RocGaude 3:11 am on March 3, 2012 Permalink |

    Mass Effect 3: “The Eloquent Shepard”

    A Spoiler-filled Squad Discussion

    Let’s just play it and talk about it, Squad-style. We’re going to anyway. Let’s keep it tidy.

    WARNING: Read this if you plan on using your 360 cloud save!!

    • bowlisimo 3:39 am on March 3, 2012 Permalink

      Come back to me, Ash. I didn’t bone any of the weirdo broads in ME2.

    • RedSwirl 4:40 am on March 3, 2012 Permalink

      Honestly, even though I just finished a double marathon of ME2, I’m thinking of starting a third, mostly-Renegade Ashely run through all three games.

    • A.J. 6:58 am on March 3, 2012 Permalink

      For those of you doing the PC version, we may as well all be Origin friends if we aren’t already. As you may guess, I’m Ajguy on there.

    • bowlisimo 2:06 pm on March 3, 2012 Permalink

      Origin = Bowlisimo

    • CMWhittington 7:11 pm on March 4, 2012 Permalink

      Here’s the breakdown of the Shepard I’ll be going into ME3 with:

      Roc Shepard

      Male Paragon Sentinel
      (default appearance)

      Ashley (ME1)
      Fling w/ Kelly (ME2)
      Miranda (ME2 – Broken off)
      Tali (ME2 – Current)

      Deceased team members:

      DLC Completed:
      ME1 – None
      ME2 – All except for “Arrival”

      Major Events:
      ME1 – Saved Council, Wrex, and Rachni. Sacrificed Kaiden.
      ME2 – Earned loyalty of all members. Finished Suicide Mission with 0 casualties. Spared Collector’s Base.

    • RedSwirl 7:28 pm on March 4, 2012 Permalink

      Arrival’s annoying but it’s also kind of important because it explains Shepard’s situation at the beginning of ME3. Don’t know why they charged money for it.

    • Pete Davison 12:56 am on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Because EA, that’s why. But let’s not start all that again. 🙂

    • JeffGrubb 1:01 am on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      That cloud save issue just gave me a mild panic attack because I don’t specifically know where my save is…I need to check.

    • beige 2:59 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      All I can say is that replaying the DLC (in the order it was released: Stolen Memories -> Overlord -> Shadow Broker -> Arrival) has 100% done the job of re-stoking my slavering enthusiasm for this series. Took a few missions to warm back up into the groove but I had to force myself to stop playing at a quarter to one in the morning last night I was enjoying myself so much. Took maybe an evening to shoot through 75% of the DLC and I aim to finish up the rest tonight.

      Also I have good odds on Gamerama selling me a collector’s edition under the table tonight before release date so we’ll see how that goes after a little recon.

    • beige 3:01 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      As soon as we can sort out this obesity epidemic in NA I’m onside with skintight body armor and envirosuits making a sci-fi comeback as a fashion statement. It’s like nobody on the Normandy’s even seen a cheeseburger before.

    • beige 3:21 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Also, those of you contemplating switching platforms or NOT importing an old save (say, because of the above glitch…) may want to read the following list of “Shit EA/Bioware done make a decision for you about if you don’t have previous game data in Mass Effect 3”

      Basically, if it’s possible for them to screw you over and kill people/ make you fail missions / make you have NOT done missions / give you the most poop result they possibly can, they’ve done it. Seems like kind of a dick move, even for EA.

      ++++ Mass Effect 1 choices ++++

      • Garrus was recruited
      • Wrex was recruited
      • The feros colony was not saved
      • Shiala, the asari, was killed by the Thorian
      • The Rachni Queen died
      • Shepard killed Wrex on Virmire
      • Shepard had no romance (oh noes!)
      • The destiny ascension, along with the council, was destroyed.
      • Udina was named counsellor
      • All side missions and DLC content are considered as if you did not do them

      ++++ Mass Effect 2 choices ++++

      • It is assumed Shepard did not do any loyalty missions
      • Shepard did not help Mordin, as such no chance was made to save or destroy the genophage cure data.
      • Tali was exiled by her people
      • Shepard had no romance
      • Zaeed and Kasumi were never recruited
      • Mordin is alive
      • Garrus is alive
      • Miranda is alive
      • Jacob is alive
      • Grunt was never woken up from the tank and as such is never mentioned
      • Jack died during the suicide mission
      • Thane died during the suicide mission
      • Tali was recruited and is alive
      • Tali never romanced
      • Samara was never recruited, but she fought her way off of ilium and was then murdered by Morinth.
      • Legion was never reactivated and never gained a name
      • Shepard destroyed the collector base
      • The only normandy crew members that survived the suicide mission were Joker and Chakwas. Yeoman chambers and all other mass effect 2 non-squad members died.
      • Shepard did not complete optional N7 missions and assignments (such as citadel missions)
      • Shepard did not complete Arrival, Overlord or the shadow broker DLC. But the events of Arrival and Overlord happened off screen, the batarian system still exploded, and Liara is still the shadow broker.


    • CMWhittington 3:28 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Wow, that’s some lubeless violating par excellance. Good thing I’ve still got my savior of the universe queued up. While it would really, REALLY suck if my actions don’t affect the events of ME3, I’m prepared for that to be the case. Still got lots of love for the ride.

    • bowlisimo 3:31 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Oof. That’s god awful. If that’s the default, it makes me wonder how well the alternatives are fleshed out. I swear to god if I get a Rachni email…

    • bowlisimo 3:35 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Who the hell kills Wrex, anyway?

    • Shingro 3:38 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Ick, well, how better to ensure that new fans of Mass Effect will go back and buy the old games? I wonder if they’re going to have a “Fallout-style” ending recap that rubs your face in the fact that all these people are dead and gone too?

      On the flip side maybe the doctors just wanted to write a tragedy… only you intrepid explorers can find out.

    • RedSwirl 4:17 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Isn’t the game gonna have a sort of “Mass Effect 3 Genesis” thing though? On ME2 if you want you can go through a visual novel version of the first game and make the major decisions. It’s even been released as DLC for the 360 and PC. You’d think they’d let you do the same thing with ME2 once you started 3.

    • CMWhittington 4:24 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      I guess we’ll know tomorrow.

    • beige 4:27 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      Yeah, and appropos of nothing there is *HUGE RAGE* on gameFAQs right now about the ending of Mass Effect 3.

      Now, I don’t know who has
      a) Already got the game
      b) Managed to finish it by now
      c) An opinion I should care about

      I’m not sweating it yet. I can imagine (total speculation here) Bioware making you choose another “more expendible than you” character sequence *cough GARRAS or LIARA cough* who would pull player heartstrings by dying heroically as a loyal ‘the universe needs you alive’ second in place of Shepard with nothing the player could do to prevent it. As a writer, I’d be fine with this. As a raging NeoGAFer and entitled gameplayer I could imagine someone getting angry at not being able to bring ’em all back alive (especially since they DID give you the opportinuty for a happy ending in ME2) . Basically, just saying that there is a huge amount of rage out there at the moment but that I don’t consider Joey NeoGAF to be the best judge of what makes a good narrative PER SE. They could blow up the earth but do it in style and I’d be OK with that.

      Still, an ending that pisses MOST people off would be pretty surprising from the folks at BW and not bode well. I mean, we were all cool with Red Dead even though it had a downer ending, right? No rage there? We’re not THAT dumb, collectively.

      Also, let’s not forget “Galactic Readyness”. If you finish the game before it even officially launches, can you really claim to be as ready as humanly possible?

    • CMWhittington 4:35 pm on March 5, 2012 Permalink

      I completly agree. The end of the Shepard arc damn near requires a major sacrifice(s) for it to retain levity. Hell, Alastair’s “good death” in DA:O left me quite satisfied despite him being one of my “go to” road dogs fir the entire game.

    • bowlisimo 12:57 am on March 6, 2012 Permalink

      Rejoice! There is now a “Helmets off during conversations” option. You can actually wear something other than the visor now.

    • RedSwirl 8:38 am on March 6, 2012 Permalink

      Okay, 45-Minute Report: Because it is ass-o-clock Eastern Standard Time and I need to go lay down.

      Con: Imported characters will look very different, especially if they originated in ME1. BioWare tweaked the art assets so much that almost every customized character will look significantly different, and not for the better in my case. If you did bring a character all the way from ME1, you also gotta go through this long-ass process just to get their face in the damn game.

      Pro: Graphics are way better than ME2. So far probably not ranking in the top Unreal Engine 3 games (like Gears 3, Mirror’s Edge, etc.), but definitely a visible upgrade from ME2. Love the motion blur, and my PC still cranks this shit out 60+ frames per second.

      Pro: Music is a clear upgrade. I didn’t even have to get out of the character customization screen to realize that. It even reminded me of ME1 more than 2. It sort of sounds like a big, epic version of ME1’s soundtrack.

      General: I already know I’m gonna want to keep playing this shit firs thing tomorrow. I only tend to get that feeling from GOTY contenders.

    • RedSwirl 8:45 am on March 6, 2012 Permalink

      Lastly, in case you guys don’t know yet, your level, skill points, and all Shepard’s powers will carry over from ME2. So if you finished with a level 30 character, you will have a level 30 Shepard right from the get-go, and some 20-odd points to spend on each squad member.

    • Jeff Grubb 3:09 pm on March 6, 2012 Permalink

      Here’s my article regarding the face-code error. Did any of you face this?


    • bowlisimo 4:09 pm on March 6, 2012 Permalink

      Nope. Thankfully Mark Vanderloo still looks like Mark Vanderloo.

    • feenwager 10:11 pm on March 7, 2012 Permalink

      Mass Effect 3 (non-spoiler) thoughts, 9 hours in:

      • It’s great. You can ignore all the other stuff below if that’s all you were wondering.
      • I can honestly say this is the first BioWare game that looks as good as it plays and feels. Great use of the Unreal Engine.
      • The shooting is tuned really well, and if you just wanted to play this as a 3rd person shooter you could certainly do much worse. The enemies use some tactics, and it has felt fair, not frustrating most of the time.
      • Tough to tell what I feel about the story so far, but it feels great to be back in this universe. Perhaps because i played through ME2 twice, everything feels very familiar, and it’s great to see old friends.
      • Not sure if I love the whole “War Effort” stuff. It feels kind of disconnected from the main game, and while the planet scanning is certainly less tedious than before, it still isn’t very exciting.
      • I’m also not sure if I totally love the way you pick up side quests. For the most part, you get them by overhearing conversations and than vague quests kind of just show up in your quest log. There is no way to have an “active” quest, and the whole thing is making me feel like I’m always missing something.
      • That said, there is a very cool, old-school feel to the game in certain ways. You can get a message on your terminal that says, “Shepard, meet me at the Purgatory Bar” and that’s it. No quest shows up, no bread crumbs. You have to remember to stop in at the Purgatory Bar next time you’re there to see what it’s all about.
      • Shepard has become a much better dancer in the last 5 years.

      Two serious issues I have with the game:

      • The constant disc swapping on the Xbox, even with both discs installed, is lame. Lame. Lame. Lame.
      • Can nobody at BioWare design a UI? I know they promised a return to a more detailed inventory system compared to ME2, but did that mean they couldn’t come up with a good way to manage load outs, check your inventory (which you really barely have), and manage your squad? The load-out screens are especially obtuse, and on what planet does the B button confirm anything? Bleh. Double bleh.
    • CMWhittington 12:30 am on March 8, 2012 Permalink

      Had @angryjedi decided to play the game, I imagine that he’d quit the moment the boy bites it from a Reaper blast.

    • feenwager 12:36 am on March 8, 2012 Permalink


    • CMWhittington 3:07 am on March 8, 2012 Permalink

      Hence, the subtitle of the main post.

    • CMWhittington 3:08 am on March 8, 2012 Permalink

      So, the relationship between Joker and EDI was a surprise. Looking forward to exploring that one with the squad once I see where it ends.

    • impynickers 6:03 am on March 8, 2012 Permalink

      I am really feeling the subtle improvements to the movement and combat. Very nice stuff.
      Also the loadout options, and the new skill upgrade options seem to be designed much much better.
      The interface has come a long way from the original game, which had a terrible interface for just about everything.

      Like with every other game in the series, the beginning is quite linear and drawn out. It will be the part I wish I could skip with all my various future playthrough’s. It does however set the tone for what I believe will be a quite emotional journey. Stuff has already happened in my playthrough that is starting to test my Shephard’s traditional confident attitude. Also, my council are jerks. Fuck those guys.

    • CMWhittington 1:59 pm on March 8, 2012 Permalink

      At first, I was bummed that I wasn’t able to add all of my past squadmates back into my roster. Then I realized that it wasn’t the combat that I wanted them for but the conversations, which BioWare still provided me with.

      Does anyone else find themselves thinking, “who is this Hackett guy and why is he all up in my business?”

      The scene where Cortez greaves for his fallen husband was more honest and classy then I expected it to be. Well done, BioWare.

    • Pete Davison 2:09 pm on March 8, 2012 Permalink

      Hardly a spoiler, given that that particular event was plastered all over the trailers and demo footage.

    • impynickers 7:48 am on March 9, 2012 Permalink

      I am generally impressed with the quality of the missions I have played so far. The pacing is much better.
      I just beat a mission where I was saving some students from an academy, and I was impressed how interesting it actually ended up being. This is the kind of mission I would half pay attention to in the other games, but here it gets a nice extra layer of polish and some interesting characters/drama.

      @Roc Didn’t we hear Hackett’s voice a number of times in the first game or something? I don’t think we ever saw him. I think he would hail your comms and draw your attention to some side missions involving alliance business. Obscure character to give screen time, but whatever. I was more jarred by the implied relationship that developed between Shephard and James inbetween 2 and 3 games. I just looked at him like ‘Who is this guy, and how does he know me?’. The time jump between each game is kinda crazy.

      Similarly crazy I find is how the citadel is never the same in each game. I mean yes, they represent different areas of the citadel, but why does the Embassy office have to be presumably on the other side of the citadel from where it used to be? I justify it in my head that Sovereign’s attack may have destroyed where the old place used to be… but sometimes I wish they took the time to render the old and the new just for a sense of consistency. Maybe thats just me. Its all pretty awesome though.

    • beige 2:14 pm on March 9, 2012 Permalink

      ALLRIGHT I’m on the N7 train. Got back from work after a hellish day yesterday, pulling long hours, slipping off my boots wearily and what do I see on the table in front of me? BOOYA. Also, this “rapid delivery to house” thing has some merit. I forsee Amazon Super Shipper in my future, bigtime

      All you others with the N7 Edition will bear this out, but holy god did the install take some time, especially with the 2-disc long massive 3-code downloadathon that takes place upon box cracking. Wow. So, uh, prop, Online Pass, From Ashes, DLC… uh… that everything? Jesus H Christ EA. I felt like I was updating my PS3 firmware here, waiting on my progress bar. “Let me slip into something more comfortable Shepard”…. [waits on bed for 45 minutes]

      I was joking to Lynette “Hey, maybe I’ll actually be playing this thing by 10 oclock”. Don’t make jokes like that. 10:09, booted it up to find that Shep’s face didn’t or won’t import correctly. Fffffffffuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu. Fortunately I’m not terribly far off the mark naturally. Was able to recreate in about 20 mins. These things are important.


      • Who the hell is James? No, seriously, are we supposed to know this guy?
      • Bowley, I instantly thought of you seeing red during that first “slow mo” sequence at the end of the Mars mission. “Noooooooooooo you muthafugggaah wwwwwrrrrraaaaahhhhhhhhg!!!!”
      • Anderson is great, as usual.
      • JUMPING! This is one of those things I was thinking about specifically when (re)playing ME2. “You know what would improve this experience? Bruce Willis action stunts!” Sliding down collapsing superstructure, firing at zugs: “You got your Uncharted in my Mass Effect!” Love it.
      • Pacing seems super snappy so far. Lynette was mentioning this in a negative context as compared with the more free roaming Mass Effect 1, but I’m generally onside with it. If the directors need to take a firmer hand and narrow the funnel in order to keep things ticking briskly, I’ll trust their directorial judgement. Still don’t have the ship so I don’t know whether things will open up or not.
      • Council: Keeping it useless since 2167
      • Engineer class still rules. Thought seriously about switching it up for ME3, but glad I didn’t. New ability to hurl little hockey pucks that transform into stationary turrets is easily my new favorite power. “Have some of these! And these! And these! (cue up attack drone) Flush ’em out!”
      • I wish they wouldn’t make me start making romance choices before I’ve met everybody again. My Shepard is conflicted. Ashley -> Miranda -> unknown…. I hardly know these people anymore “I’m the same man as I always was, Ashley”… except I’m not. Will Sparks fly for Shepard and Tali in this third installment, or will our hero be lucky in action but unlucky in love? Time will tell.
    • beige 3:14 pm on March 9, 2012 Permalink

      Hey romantics: I just discovered that my plans for romancing ladies come Mass Effect 3 have come to a screeching halt. Bioware won’t let you pick up the pieces of romances that you aborted as a result of a decision to choose (other) people in Mass Effect 2. This is a shame. I’d been kind of angling in my case for a Shepard who eventually came around to a “..the time wasn’t right back then….” 11th hour romance with Tali the Quarrian but Bioware says that if you let someone down easy, they stay let down.

      To sum up: Looks like your choices are:

      • Anybody you successfully paired with in ME1 or ME2
      • New people in ME3.
      • If you “cheated” in ME2 you can get back together with ME1 people, but it will take extra work.
      • No playing the field amongst your crew.
      • Note: Characters from ME2 are NOT romance options for Shep unless you “carried the romance through” from an imported ME2 saved game.

      Sorry Tali. I was hoping to make your Quarrian day, but I hope you find some nice guy instead.

      Back on the Getting To Know You train with Ashley…. Poor Shepard. This is what you get, for not choosing the nice girl when you had the chance playa. They don’t stay single. -____-;

    • beige 3:20 pm on March 9, 2012 Permalink

      I wonder if BioWare programmed any sort of contingency for a situation like that. I mean, having a “Broken hearted Shepard watching Tali walk away into the distance” scene would be fucking awesome in a “what goes around comes around” kinda way. Guess we’ll find out.

    • RedSwirl 3:22 pm on March 9, 2012 Permalink

      I was kinda hoping Traynor turned out to be the new Kelly.

    • RedSwirl 3:27 pm on March 9, 2012 Permalink

      Crap. Read some Tali spoilers on the Wiki.

    • RedSwirl 6:36 pm on March 9, 2012 Permalink

      This is just some stupid thinking on my part, but here’s what I gather so far about the Reaper war in 20th century terms:

      The Humans = The Soviet Union
      The Turians = England
      The Batarians = Poland
      The Volus = France
      The Asari = The United States
      The Reapers = Nazi Germany
      Cerberus = The Empire of Japan

      Roughly speaking.

    • impynickers 10:15 pm on March 10, 2012 Permalink

      Romancible Jessica Chobot? Good lord, I had no idea.

    • feenwager 12:35 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      You know that moment in a good RPG where you feel like you’ve accomplished a lot and then the world opens up and you suddenly have a full quest log again?

      That just happened. Sweet.

    • CMWhittington 12:38 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      At what point is that? This is a spoiler thread so let it rip.

    • CMWhittington 12:39 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Yeah, and she looks…odd. I found it funny that she’s only worth 5 “war readiness” bucks.

    • feenwager 12:39 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      I’ll try to stay somewhat spoiler free, so I’ll say it’s right after an assault on the Citadel.

    • sinfony 1:48 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Spent the afternoon trying out the multiplayer. It’s pretty good! The microtransaction element of it is a bit annoying, but I’m having a ball ignoring all that and playing matches with pubbies. Still haven’t managed to win a round–died on 10th wave several times, though. And it’s done wonders to allay my fears about tying into the maingame, as just the afternoon’s play was enough to kick my war readiness up 20%. Definitely worth a go.

    • Jeff Grubb 1:55 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      I’m a little bit past that. Have you had to switch between the first and second disc much? I switched to disc two a while ago and haven’t switched back a single time. I just hope I didn’t miss anything.

    • Jeff Grubb 1:59 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink


      Anyone choose to kill the Rachni queen in the first game?

    • Jeff Grubb 2:03 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Well, that isn’t the spoiler, but what I want to talk about is…oh, fuck off. I’ve been playing this game non-stop.

    • feenwager 2:51 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      I did. Why?

    • CMWhittington 3:04 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Good to know. My son’s been playing the MP non-stop and his war readiness is at 98%. However, he didn’t play for a day and it went down to 97%…the horror!!

      I am at the spot where I “need” to play MP to make sure my end game is what I want it to be. I just don’t want to have to play it for too long.

    • CMWhittington 3:06 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      I’m gearing up for an attack on Mr. Illusive Man’s home turf. Damn has this game gotten under my skin in a good way.

      The disc swapping has been more then ME2 which is disheartening. I’d say I’ve swapped it about 4 times.

    • Jeff Grubb 3:13 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      There are several really big missions involving them. The big one involves Grunt. I was just wondering if they really cut that out for people who killed the Rachni Queen, or if they cheated and replaced it with some generic placeholder.

    • feenwager 3:16 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      they didn’t cut it. Instead I got a crazy hybrid rachni/reaper abomination that I had to either destroy or recruit. It was cool, but in retrospect it kind of dulls the impact of that decision in the first game.

    • Jeff Grubb 3:19 am on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Oof. That’s some BS. I got the same thing, however, I could recruit the Rachni queen to fight in the war.

    • CMWhittington 12:52 pm on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      I’ve reached the “point of no return” and all that’s left is for me to boost my “war readiness” score. As far as I know, I only have 2 options to do this: 1) play the multi-player for awhile and/or 2) play the iOS game. While there’s no way I’m doing the later, I’ve seriously considered letting my son play the MP on my behalf. After 3 games of seeing this story through (which is the only reason I’m invested in this series), you’d think I’d be able to hop right in there and get an ending I’d be happy with. Instead, I feel like I’m forced to play a gameplay feature that’s probably only there because a tool at EA deemed it a necessary add-on.

      I’m trying not to get too frustrated with BioWare. On one hand, they’ve really done a great job with Mass Effect. It’s the futuristic, GI Joe-stylized “Choose Your Own Adventure” video game I would have killed for when I was 13. It’s just that a lot of seams are showing now and the business side of the industry is taking too much control of the interactive reins. Mass Effect will go down in history as being a textbook example of what happens when ambition is met halfway by the forces that will allow it to grow leaving only a shell of the original, beautiful ideal.

    • Pete Davison 1:57 pm on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Yeah, don’t play the iOS game.

      Also, I was afraid of what you describe. What a shame. Ah well.

    • beige 2:15 pm on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      You guys are all cockteases. We just finished the part where Mordin shows up for his first cameo last night. Damn, I love this party.

      Had a difficult decision last night were my Shepard had to tell Miranda it was over. Rather than lead all the female characters on until I’m forced to make a decision between one of them THIS TIME my Shepard took his lumps like a man. Miranda, tears in eyes, telling me that she was going to be OK, but obviously really not really. We’ll keep in touch. Except we won’t. Fuck. That was my first “stare at this dialogue choice for like, ten minutes while I get a ginger ale and contemplate” moment of ME3. There’s something very final in making choices like that. After years of play, as a player you’re finally committing to one course of action and sticking with it — this or that – defining for the last time what Shepard’s ultimate story is going to be. That sound you hear is doors closing all over the place. Poor Shepard. See, the thing is Miranda — we thought that we both might die tomorrow, and both of us were supposed to be grownups with no regrets — the only two adults on the Normandy without significant issues in that department. Then we go our separate ways and that’s that. You were supposed to be the one whose skin was thick enough to take it. Now, sadly I don’t think it’s going to work out that well or happily for this character now, and it’s kinda my fault, maybe, a little. Uh oh. At least they gave you an “it’s… complicated” dialogue option. Ash, you better appreciate your fucking Tennyson novel. At least I can console myself with not being a FemShep who was into Thane in ME2. Poor fucking guy. Talk about a doomed romance.

      As I said before, I’m now moving into a sort of state of regrets about a few of my choices from earlier in the series, but that’s OK. I’ve accepted that it’s not going to be a happy time for everybody involved. I like Wrex on a personal level but the Krogan are kind of freaking me out right now. Shepard is already doing things I’m not proud or particularly comfortable with here just to make sure there are boots on the ground and that the alliance survives.

      Little cameos and dialogue tweaks from past games keep cropping up here and there and making me smile. Kasumi Goto, the Arrival guy… just little shout-outs to people who actually played the DLC with various references pasted in there.

      If I have one gripe so far it’s that my special “From Ashes” character who seems like he should be kind of, y’know, A BIG FUCKING DEAL has not had any significant dialogue contributions nor has particularly piped up on missions to say this or that. I keep bringing him along in the hopes that maybe this time things will be different, but I’ve found that the most juicy interactions are just to keep kicking everything back to a Mass Effect 1 love-fest with all the original cast getting the most screen time.

      I’m pretty sure you can get the best ending without having to do all this multiplayer nonsense. Galactic readiness is nice and all but you don’t need it. 50% is enough as long as you do lots of side questin’.

    • bowlisimo 5:11 pm on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Grunt is dead in mine, had some random Krogan leading that squad. Dag or something.

      Saved the Rachni, saved the Queen AGAIN, now her and her kids are working on the crucible. Interesting. I was hoping friendly Rachni armies would come flooding out of the relays at the last moment, but I guess this will work too.

    • bowlisimo 5:19 pm on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Multiplayer is great but it gets old fast, like really, really fast. I also hate these random packs you buy with in game currency. I can never unlock a damn thing. Ugh.

      It’s cool that it loosely ties into the singleplayer, but you know what? Just armchair developing here, but I would have spent those resources on THE GALAXY MAP.

      IT’S SO STUPID. Fly into system, carpet bomb with scans, find everything, die to Reapers, no penalty, restart in same system, go right to all the spots you found before and grab random war assets that should be a big deal to get, but are just a pop-up. WHAT’S THE POINT? This is the most frustrating part of the game for me.

      I hate to say it, but I’d rather scan for minerals.

    • bowlisimo 5:26 pm on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      Heh, interesting. For me, talking to Miranda went something like this, “Hey, how’s it going? How’d that Cerberus thing work out? Your sister is gone? You need help? Well, I’ll take a break from saving the galaxy when you do. Bye.”

    • Jeff Grubb 10:40 pm on March 12, 2012 Permalink

      I made the same choice with Miranda. The thing is, I heard she has a quest involving her sister that was supposed to trigger there if you don’t make her tear up.

      That whole thing totally broke my heart by the way. Mass Effect’s face technology has never been great, but the disappointed conveyed when I told her that we were done was obvious in her sunken expression. Then the tears. It was affecting.

    • bowlisimo 2:57 pm on March 13, 2012 Permalink

      Didn’t make any progress last night, found a pub multiplayer team that was magical. Killed two silver random matches without much trouble. The galaxy is at 99% and I’m only 1/2-2/3 through the game, it feels like.

      I need to get going on this game, though. The hoopla surrounding the ending is slightly worrying. Petitions? Really?

      It’s weird, because the main line of the game has been AMAZING to me so far. Slowly watching that memorial wall on the Normandy fill up with names (including Kaiden, Legion, and Grunt from the first two games), rekindling love with Ash, touching moments, dramatic sacrifices and goodbyes, cinematic moments, I love it. Too bad the side stuff is all pointless and shallow, sort of like Assassin’s Creed, but as long as they keep it up and make good on all this military buildup, with a modicum of closure, I’ll be happy.

      Almost feel like I shouldn’t have finished MGS4 before this.

    • beige 3:12 pm on March 13, 2012 Permalink

      There’s certainly been a lot of handwringing about the ending online, that’s for sure. I’ve said time and again to Lynette that “the only opinions I care about are those in the Squadron of Shame”. Everyone else is a philistine and/or a Visigoth as far as I’m concerned. I don’t trust Joe NeoGAF to have a cultured objective opinion when it comes to things like this. Also, if I hear the term “Franchise Killer” I don’t necessarily think “bad thing”. You know what’s great about well written books and movies? They END. It’s like people have forgotten what a real story’s supposed to feel like in the age of undying lich-like IPs.

      Like Bowley, my experiences with ME3 so far have been fantastic – watching the Party come out of retirement for cameos here and there… some people’s storylines wrapping up for the worse, some better. I trust BioWare that in TEN YEARS of development time they’d probably have given some thought to the tone of how they wanted stuff to end.

      Lynette’s feelings (she’s read more rage-filled messageboards than I have) is that Bioware could screw everything up by removing “the feeling that player choices actually mattered” at the time it comes time to end the game. This is a fair point: I know that Bioware probably didn’t create, you know, assets for 70 different final encounters and 70 different final areas and final bosses that key off of whether or not you blew up X in game #1. This is AAA land, and it’s nice to want things. That said, they’ve already sunk a hell of a lot of money into creating things I’ll never see during MY playthrough – who knows what they’ll do?

      I’m probably going to be routed down a single path a la the Suicide Mission in ME2 when it comes time for this to build to a head. I might be fine with this, I might not. It will depend heavily on whether they can keep up the smoke and mirrors illusion that My Choices actually mattered in a significant way when it comes time to roll credits. On an intellectual level I know that the whole show is an illusion… my choices DON’T really affect things that much… but the way they’re presenting it to me right now obfuscates this in a pleasing way that lets me suspend my disbelief. When I see Mordin show up I’m kind of glad he didn’t die way back there in the day. Etc. It SEEMS like my story, even if it’s also your story. Does that make sense?

      I think I saw Lik post on facebook today that the game was finished and the ending was great and Epic. This is the first message of any kind I’ve had from someone within the squad, so it bodes well.

      This is from someone who wanted Master Chief to blow himself up to high hell though rather than continue on in franchise land. Say what you want about MGS4, that fucker ENDS.

    • CMWhittington 3:37 pm on March 13, 2012 Permalink

      While I haven’t finished it yet, all of this “internet rage” can only mean one thing: Shepard dies. Guess what? That’s how epics end. So be it.

      Like @liklik, Greg Knight (aka @Vegan) has finished the game and says great things about it. His take on games is definitely in line with ours so I’m not concerned.

    • beige 4:26 pm on March 13, 2012 Permalink

      Note the large and SPOILER FILLED article up right now at penny arcade’s “PA Report” called “Why the ending of Mass Effect 3 was satisfying, and worthy of the series (Massive spoilers)” By Ben Kuchera / Tue, Mar 13, 2012

      Note. MASSIVE SPOILERS. In case you didn’t read that before. I’m not going to link to it here so that nobody can accidentally click it, but if you’ve finished ME3 then go ahead and go over to Penny Arcade and examine to your hearts content. If you can condense your thoughts into something resembling spoiler-free prose I’d be interested to hear your take here on the box.

    • bowlisimo 5:06 pm on March 13, 2012 Permalink

      It’s cliche, but I’m fine with noble sacrifices, if that’s how it ends (I’m still a ways off). They’re satisfying. I voluntarily let my Dwarf die at the end of Dragon Age. Classic heroes usually die for the greater good.

      Although, I did have a thought last night about what a sequel set in the future, post Reapers, Shepard’s still alive, would be like. I kind of like the cliche where old Shepard (bearded and gray, like Sheriden in later B5) has to pull some of his crew back together on the Normandy (which is now completely obsolete at this point) for whatever reason and sort of have a No Country for Old Men realization on the way. I’m a relic, this galaxy ‘aint for me anymore.

      Another thought: Shepard doesn’t actually save the universe, the crucible isn’t a weapon, per se, and the reapers win, but the message is safely passed on to the next cycle or into the past or something weird in a Bastion-like ending.

      Just thinking out loud.

    • CMWhittington 5:34 pm on March 13, 2012 Permalink

      Oooo, that later option would probably piss me off.

    • beige 6:56 pm on March 13, 2012 Permalink


    • tolkoto 6:43 am on March 14, 2012 Permalink

      I just finished the game, and I personally had a lot of problems with the ending. I don’t want to get to into it because I know a lot of you are still playing. I’ll hold off for a week or so.

      I will say that basically the problem was Bioware trying way, way too hard. Also, some of you are predicting that the hate is just nerd rage over Shepard dying/not dying (I’m not saying he does or doesn’t). It’s not that.

    • CMWhittington 12:42 pm on March 14, 2012 Permalink

      Interesting… *chin-stroking*

    • RedSwirl 11:36 pm on March 14, 2012 Permalink

      Yeah I finished it too, and I can definitely understand the nerd rage. It “ends” the universe of the games in a definitive way. Some have compared it to the end of The Return of the King, where the price for killing Sauron was that the Elves had to leave Middle Earth.

      The biggest problem though is that the endings are more similar to each other asset-wise than those of either of the previous games. It feels lazily-produced.

    • tolkoto 11:52 pm on March 14, 2012 Permalink

      Yeah, but in Lord of the Rings the elves were leaving anyway. It wasn’t really the “price” for killing Sauron. The real price, at least for Frodo, was the life he left behind and that he could never return to.

    • bowlisimo 9:08 pm on March 15, 2012 Permalink

      Still haven’t beaten this game, but this should be the credits music, it’s fucking great.

    • CMWhittington 9:16 pm on March 15, 2012 Permalink

      I’ll probably finish it this weekend because I’ve found a way to raise my war readiness w/o playing the MP: Mass Effect Datapad on iOS. It’s free and has a AC: Brohood-style mini-game where you send fleets into regions for missions and collect the booty at the end.

    • tolkoto 2:10 am on March 17, 2012 Permalink

      This is my favorite reasoning for why the ending sucked yet. Written by a screenwriter: http://social.bioware.com/forum/1/topic/355/index/10022779/1

    • bowlisimo 5:21 am on March 17, 2012 Permalink

      I’m almost there, Mike, but it just keeps getting better. I can’t possibly imagine how they fuck this up. I don’t see any signs. I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop constantly, like Shepard takes a dump and uses it as the catalyst or something.

      Next stop, Asari space.

    • impynickers 4:46 pm on March 17, 2012 Permalink

      @bowlisimo That song is so gooood….

      Also, I beat the game. I see what the fuss is about, but the game overall was spectacular. So I can deal with it.

    • feenwager 1:34 am on March 19, 2012 Permalink

      The ending was fine. Some of the stuff in the final moments wasn’t as well presented as it could have been, but the actual ENDING was everything it needed to be.

    • bowlisimo 2:02 am on March 19, 2012 Permalink

      Apparently I got the “Best” ending. Can’t help but feel disappointed with how that was handled. I loved every moment of that game up to the point where you talk to the catalyst and make the decision.

      Even so, I can live with it, but I feel no sense of closure or accomplishment at all. Which really sucks.

      Shepard should have died, that scene where he takes a breath is a cop out, and I thought the scene after the credits was kind of hokey. Also, COMMANDER SHEPARD’S LEGEND LIVES ON THROUGH DLC.

      *eye roll*

    • beige 3:52 pm on March 19, 2012 Permalink

      Just got to the migrant fleet. I’m some behind yall as I’ve been up to my ass in aligators at work, but I’m running the slow and steady race. Disappointed to hear Bowls’ assessment as I’m currently sitting at the “I have no idea how they could fuck this up” phase.

    • impynickers 6:18 pm on March 19, 2012 Permalink

      One thing I felt throughout the final hours leading up to the climax was an incredible sense of weight and despair. I think they were able to really drive home that this is basically the end of the galaxy as they know it. Its a fools hope, and shephard is that Frodo with the ring wildcard. The game would not let up. I remember the epic struggle on earth, and it was exhausting and depressing.

      Shephard has never been tragic, but I felt bad for the character. All the crap he/she has put up with in this entire series, and here he/she is still the beacon of hope for the galaxy to the very end. There was a huge burden on this character, but my Shephard was a strong character. Not Marcus Fenix style strong, but a rock solid individual in which people could depend on.

    • sinfony 7:01 am on April 1, 2012 Permalink

      Okay, finished. Have spent a little bit of time poking around the internet seeing what people have to say. Most of the criticism I’ve come across is drivel. Indoctrination theory is pretty interesting. Will definitely be interesting to see what DLC they have in store.

      On the whole, thought the game was fantastic. My only real problem with it was that the direction and camerawork of most of the cutscenes was godawful. I don’t remember it being this bad in the first two games, but perhaps that’s just nostalgia talking.

    • CMWhittington 10:19 pm on April 1, 2012 Permalink

      I felt as if everything wrapped up a bit too tidy. Basically, if someone died, it was always for the greater good. With the final goodbyes being doled out systematically right before the final battle, well…it just felt too produced.

    • bowlisimo 6:08 pm on April 2, 2012 Permalink

      The only exception to that being Cortez, who exploded randomly in his shuttle. It was at this point that Ashley (my love interest from ME1, I brought Garrus/Ash to Earth) decided to scream this horrible misdirected scream.

    • bowlisimo 6:09 pm on April 2, 2012 Permalink

      Oh, also Kelly Chambers WHO CERBERUS SHOT IN THE HEAD.

  • Shingro 3:55 am on February 29, 2012 Permalink

    Man I wish I could post my own stuff, (ment to get to it after most people moved on, but glad it sparked such discussion!) Unless a miracle happens though I’ll have to throw it into the ring tomorrow since I have a giant paper due and then a super-test. <_<

    @liklik o/\o high fives

  • bowlisimo 1:39 am on February 29, 2012 Permalink

    Just thinking ahead, should we start a spoilerific subdiscussion thread come Mass Effect 3? You know, to ease Pete’s pain?

    Edit: Read a Giantbomb forum post warning people of massive ME3 spoilers going around. Might be time to avoid clicking links, going to youtube, and/or using the internet altogether.

    @liklik Nice to see a familiar name. In the words of Ahhhhnold, “Stick ahhhround!”

  • RocGaude 11:39 pm on February 28, 2012 Permalink
    Tags: Dat ass   

    I’m so glad @liklik is around to keep it real. 😉

  • Pete Davison 5:01 pm on February 28, 2012 Permalink  

    @liklik Ah right! No, I never played Arkham City. I keep telling myself I’m saving it for after I beat Arkham Asylum, which is taunting me from my Steam list.

    Then I go and get embroiled in some gigantic RPG and forget all about it. 🙂

  • Pete Davison 4:29 pm on February 28, 2012 Permalink  

    @liklik I believe Beige gives some love to Arkham City a bit later, praising its combat system. 🙂

    I still need to get around to Bastion at some point.

Compose new post
Next post/Next comment
Previous post/Previous comment
Show/Hide comments
Go to top
Go to login
Show/Hide help
shift + esc