The riginal original ending (ME1 era)? (spoilers)

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#1 Edited by Quipido (573 posts) -

On the last Bombcast Brad mentioned there is a mention of the originally intended ending leaked somwhere on the internet, which writers had in mind when constructing the lore while making the first Mass Effect game. I was wondering if anybody found that information, I had no luck searching for it because everyone is talking about ME3 ending pre-EC and DLC when using these terms.

Anyone?

EDIT: also a fucking typo

#2 Edited by Kedi2 (229 posts) -
#3 Edited by Ghostiet (5153 posts) -

AFAIK, the leak said that it was supposed to focus on the Dark Energy.

I might get some facts wrong, but basically the Reapers' purpose was to stop the spread of Dark Energy so the universe won't consume itself, but they weren't smart enough to do that, so they created the mass relays and the whole shebang, with the idea of harvesting races to power-up. Humanity turned out to have the greatest potential out of all the races they harvested so far and they banked their hopes on acquiring them (which is partially the reason why they put the Collectors in action - the quicker they could get a Human-Reaper, the better). But it turns out that it's super late - the mass relays themselves further the spread of Dark Energy, so the Reapers' robbed themselves of a lot of time.

The ending was supposed to give you two choices: you either sacrifice the entire human race with the hopes that it will be enough to save the universe, or you destroy the Reapers and stop the harvest, arguing that the current cycle is good enough to figure something out with help from the Reaper data.

There's evidence that it's true, since there's a lot of foreshadowing about Dark Energy in ME2 (Haestrom) and the entire plot of that game is about humanity being special. Harbinger rambles about "genetic destiny" all the time and Mordin remarks that humans are more genetically diverse than any other race. It's never mentioned again in ME3, probably because Karpyshyn left.

EDIT: Oh, I didn't know that Karpyshyn confirmed it himself. So yeah, there you go.

#4 Edited by xyzygy (9624 posts) -

Yeah, what Ghostiet says above is what Karpyshyn wanted the ending to be like. Apparently. There are small hints in ME1 and huge ones in ME2, as well as the books written by him (the only good ones). It's no wonder why he left the series (and the studio). The new endings are utter and complete shit in contrast to what they could have been.

#5 Posted by kerse (2039 posts) -

That sounds pretty bad, but kinda interesting at the same time. Those choices are pretty messed up lol.

#6 Posted by WarlordPayne (692 posts) -

I would have vastly preferred the dark energy ending. I think it's more interesting than "robots are bad" and the choices you'd have to make at the end would have been horrific, in a really good way.

#7 Posted by mrpandaman (836 posts) -

@xyzygy said:

Yeah, what Ghostiet says above is what Karpyshyn wanted the ending to be like. Apparently. There are small hints in ME1 and huge ones in ME2, as well as the books written by him (the only good ones). It's no wonder why he left the series (and the studio). The new endings are utter and complete shit in contrast to what they could have been.

I don't think that ending would've been better than the current ending is. The main problem I have, and many I know had with the ending to ME3 was the execution of it. I like both of these ideas but it would've been about whether Bioware could have done it well.

#8 Posted by SpacePenguin (472 posts) -

Wow those sound way more interesting, such a shame.

#9 Posted by Pr1mus (3513 posts) -

There isn't a lot of details to judge this potential ending but from what i just read it sounds waaaaaaaay worst than what we got. Maybe not the ending itself but the story and purpose of the reapers anyway.

#10 Posted by BisonHero (5663 posts) -

That original ending doesn't sound like, great or anything, but it seems preferable to the one that they actually used.

#11 Posted by itspizza (420 posts) -

Idk, this guy also came up with the terminator baby, and this ending doesn't sound awesome. Probably would have executed better, but I feel like the premise of the ending we got wasn't bad, just poorly executed.

#12 Posted by Vinny_Says (5630 posts) -

The problem was the execution of the ending, not the story of the ending itself.

Oh so you did all this shit and fixed all the problems in the galaxy? no matter, here choose one of these options, green, red or blue, what will you choose?

At least everything leading up to that moment was some of the coolest and most fun gaming experiences of this generation. Can't fault Bioware on that part.

#13 Posted by Quipido (573 posts) -

Thank you, it is at least interesting to see a part of the original vision.

#14 Posted by Dallas_Raines (2047 posts) -

The original ending sounds super, super shitty. That human reaper thing is soooo dumb.

#15 Edited by Ghostiet (5153 posts) -

@BisonHero said:

That original ending doesn't sound like, great or anything, but it seems preferable to the one that they actually used.

Yeah. I'm mostly for it because it would be consistent with what's in the rest of the series. The current one just kinda falls onto you with no foreshadowing. Although I still think that both are kinda crap, since they pretty much betray the real themes of Mass Effect - that one person can make a huge difference and that there is always a way to pull through, even if you fall pretty hard (Virmire, the crew abduction, Thessia).

#16 Edited by xaLieNxGrEyx (2579 posts) -

I'm so glad I never got into these games.

However I still feel like ME2 would have been/is an outstanding game that delivered on all aspects.

#17 Posted by dOm_CaTz (193 posts) -

you can change the endings as much as you want, but if not executed properly then it doesn't even matter.

#18 Posted by BoOzak (839 posts) -

Yeah i've heard the original ending. It isnt much better, but it at least leaves more room for sequels than the current one. *waits for inevitable 'you're still talking about this shit' post*

#19 Edited by Spectrea (35 posts) -

Kind of a shame Drew left. I dont know the details so i wont speculate, but it pretty much ruined the story and every concerning arc in Mass effect 3. The original ideas was not followed, and lead to a game focused on combat. For example the Rachni. They was set up as a huge plot point from the very first game, and in the end they was pointless no matter what you did, its a shame but Mac walters could just not make up for the black hole Drew left behind. But then how could he?

I personally would of liked that ending, at least it correlates with the first two games, and was actually planned unlike space kid and his contrived plotholes with which the geth-quarian conflict directly contradicts.

#20 Posted by Viking_Funeral (1567 posts) -

@BisonHero said:

That original ending doesn't sound like, great or anything, but it seems preferable to the one that they actually used.

And who knows? Maybe the execution could have been better. I remember fans who read the script to X-Men 2 before it was released said it was one of the stupidest scripts they had ever read. (AICN, or along those lines?) It ended up being one of the few good movies in the series.

What it all comes down to is execution, in the end. As Brad's experience vs. the rest of the staff's have shown, even minor changes can make a significant difference.

#21 Posted by living4theday258 (677 posts) -

ME3 just executed its ending poorly. Im glad my brother(he bought the game i didn't) decided to keep it instead of turn it in to game-stop. There is a good game here its just got a bad ending.

#22 Edited by MetalGearSunny (6984 posts) -

When I read "dark matter was supposed to consume everything" I just thought of Fable 3 and just laughed.

#23 Edited by feliciano182 (100 posts) -

@Ghostiet said:

I might get some facts wrong, but basically the Reapers' purpose was to stop the spread of Dark Energy so the universe won't consume itself, but they weren't smart enough to do that, so they created the mass relays and the whole shebang, with the idea of harvesting races to power-up. Humanity turned out to have the greatest potential out of all the races they harvested so far and they banked their hopes on acquiring them (which is partially the reason why they put the Collectors in action - the quicker they could get a Human-Reaper, the better). But it turns out that it's super late - the mass relays themselves further the spread of Dark Energy, so the Reapers' robbed themselves of a lot of time.

The ending was supposed to give you two choices: you either sacrifice the entire human race with the hopes that it will be enough to save the universe, or you destroy the Reapers and stop the harvest, arguing that the current cycle is good enough to figure something out with help from the Reaper data.

As much as I like the idea of a Dark Energy ending, which by itself is a tribute to scientifical knowledge, theoretical physics, and to great minds like Carl Sagan, Michio Kaku and Stephen Hawking, the choice itself is completely nonsensical.

Who the hell is going to sacrifice an entire species (none other than precisely the human race) on the "hope" that the dark energy problem might be resolved ? Specially when there's the option of finding a solution with the exact same amount of stakes (sp) involved ?

Not to say that the ending itself debilitates the arguments of the people who criticize the original endings, if they think this is the "rightful" ending of the ME franchise (as I've heard some say before), then what happens with the criticisms about your choices not being reflected ? What happens with the wildly different endings and cutscenes you apparently wanted ?

I thought the ending of Mass Effect 3 was fantastic, and even while I thought it had considerable flaws worth discussing, it still has much more content than the Dark Energy ending, which again, great idea, but piss-poor plan for the execution.

#24 Posted by WilliamHenry (1195 posts) -

@feliciano182 said:

@Ghostiet said:

I might get some facts wrong, but basically the Reapers' purpose was to stop the spread of Dark Energy so the universe won't consume itself, but they weren't smart enough to do that, so they created the mass relays and the whole shebang, with the idea of harvesting races to power-up. Humanity turned out to have the greatest potential out of all the races they harvested so far and they banked their hopes on acquiring them (which is partially the reason why they put the Collectors in action - the quicker they could get a Human-Reaper, the better). But it turns out that it's super late - the mass relays themselves further the spread of Dark Energy, so the Reapers' robbed themselves of a lot of time.

The ending was supposed to give you two choices: you either sacrifice the entire human race with the hopes that it will be enough to save the universe, or you destroy the Reapers and stop the harvest, arguing that the current cycle is good enough to figure something out with help from the Reaper data.

As much as I like the idea of a Dark Energy ending, which by itself is a tribute to scientifical knowledge, theoretical physics, and to great minds like Carl Sagan, Michio Kaku and Stephen Hawking, the choice itself is completely nonsensical.

Who the hell is going to sacrifice an entire species (none other than precisely the human race) on the "hope" that the dark energy problem might be resolved ? Specially when there's the option of finding a solution with the exact same amount of stakes (sp) involved ?

Not to say that the ending itself debilitates the arguments of the people who criticize the original endings, if they think this is the "rightful" ending of the ME franchise (as I've heard some say before), then what happens with the criticisms about your choices not being reflected ? What happens with the wildly different endings and cutscenes you apparently wanted ?

I thought the ending of Mass Effect 3 was fantastic, and even while I thought it had considerable flaws worth discussing, it still has much more content than the Dark Energy ending, which again, great idea, but piss-poor plan for the execution.

Without the original idea being fully developed and implemented, its impossible to know how your choices would have effected it.

#25 Posted by Brodehouse (9370 posts) -

I think the original ending sounds super fucking dumb (as written) and for a series that leans at being hard sci-fi, is complete nonsense. I like the idea of the Reapers holding the galaxy in technological stasis, but the 'sacrifice humans in order to stop quantum physics' is a hell of a wallbanger.

I think everyone who says "the organic-synthetic ending comes out of nowhere", nuh uh. The entire series as a whole is basically a lot of rumination of parents and children. Creators and the created. Think about the loyalty missions in ME2; almost every single one falls into either coming to terms with where you came from, or the responsibility of creating something beyond yourself. Jack, Grunt, Jacob, Miranda; dealing with the people and events that made them who they are, what does that mean for them, what is their position within or without it. Samara, Mordin, Zaeed, Thane, even Garrus; they feel responsible for things that 'came from them'. How do they relate to the things they created, what is their responsibility, what do they do now? It carries into 3; the geth are confused and even emotionally hurt by the events of their own creation as sentients, they still cannot quite understand the why's of their own beginnings. "Does this unit have a soul?" Mordin doesn't treat the genophage like a thing that happened, it's something he's responsible for, especially as he's nearing his own terminus. He wants his legacy to be life, not stillbirths.

So, yes, organics-synthetics, creators-created, parents-children. The entire thing reads like something written by people in that adult transition, between chiefly being sons and daughters to chiefly being mothers and fathers.

#26 Posted by Undeadpool (4867 posts) -

I'll echo what Brad said and agree that could have been really cool but also could have been REALLY dumb.

#27 Edited by feliciano182 (100 posts) -

@WilliamHenry said:

Without the original idea being fully developed and implemented, its impossible to know how your choices would have effected it.

A reasonable stance, however, there were people who claimed this as a satisfying ending, and they were contradicting themselves.

@Brodehouse:

I think the original ending sounds super fucking dumb (as written) and for a series that leans at being hard sci-fi, is complete nonsense. I like the idea of the Reapers holding the galaxy in technological stasis, but the 'sacrifice humans in order to stop quantum physics' is a hell of a wallbanger.

Dark Energy is a real threat to our universe though, it separates the atoms of the stars at a determined rate, and while it will take millions among millions of years to "destroy" the universe, it will do so unless sentient life intervenes somehow.

The entire series as a whole is basically a lot of rumination of parents and children. Creators and the created.

I like you friend.

Personally, I have issue when people fail to acknowledge that The Catalyst's ideas were not a mistake from the writers, it is precisely supposed to be an inadequate solution to a problem that only an ageless, detached, artificial intelligence could ever come up with.

As an addendum, I'd like to think about the religious metaphors, Shepard "falls" three times in the series before reaching The Crucible, stating his role as a Messiah, he "ascends", and despite his wounds and state of near death, he/she stands taller than the ethereal creature (God) that controls the "Dark Demons" of the universe.

#28 Posted by Korwin (2721 posts) -

The original ending would have been a lot better if handled correctly. It's partially why I found the end of the series to be such a bizarre/out of place left turn since I already knew were things were originally headed (anyone familiar with sci-fi tropes could see the original layout from a mile away).

#29 Posted by HistoryInRust (6215 posts) -

@Dallas_Raines said:

The original ending sounds super, super shitty. That human reaper thing is soooo dumb.

A giant Terminator skeleton versus a black hole sounds like something I'd see on Tim and Eric.

#30 Posted by Dark (356 posts) -

Wasn't it also suppose to link to Mass Effect energy? Something about the use of Mass Effect energy sped up the incursion of dark energy, thus the reapers harvesting at the height of civilization to post pone the use of ME energy whilst at the same time using the races to figure out how to stop the dark matter?

I read that somewhere, either way the dark energy thing made more sense than a sentient race of half machines harvesting sentient life to avoid the sentient life creating machines that would destroy sentient life.

#31 Posted by themangalist (1675 posts) -

The planned ending i thought from a story-writing standpoint, a total failure. You introduced the Geth and Saren as the "enemy" but NOOOOO it was actually the REAPERS who are planning everything. So we fought the reapers but NOOOOO there's even a more magnificent force behind everything, which is dark matter.

This is pure dragonball z level of story telling: keep introducing more and more powerful and universal threats. It's just stupid. I like the original ending just fine, the revelation that reapers are synthetics kind of lets ME3 fit right in.

#32 Edited by Tru3_Blu3 (3152 posts) -

Bioware should've just stuck with the Reapers being bad guys that wanted to consume civilizations worth of power so they could become strong enough to dominate all things beyond the galaxy. Then we fucking destroy them. We die or live; some live or die; romance with Tali or Tali touches herself in depression over your death; WHATEVER! The Reapers' purpose as sentient gods shouldn't be a care in the world for we, as feeble beings, can't comprehend their awesomeness. So they should have just let that be and we should have simply used that Crucible to fuck shit up. The end.

#33 Posted by BBAlpert (1260 posts) -

At the very end a bartender from New York City named Kyle Shepard wakes up and steps out of the Animus.

#34 Posted by Korolev (1646 posts) -

See, the ending that Drew envisioned at least made sense. The Reapers were harvesting lifeforms for a worthwhile purpose. The ending in ME3 does NOT make sense - "we have to kill you to prevent you from making AI that will kill all life - why couldn't we just, with our superior technology, HELP you defeat rogue AI - well we just can't. Don't ask questions." But Drew's ending does make sense, even if its not the ending I would have gone for myself.

My ideal ending would be that the Reapers have reached the end of their evolutionary tree - they've advanced to the stage of being reapers, but they don't know how to progress beyond that, and they harvest species in order to enhance their genetics and hopefully find a new way to advance even further. They seek to elevate all life, and themselves to a perceived higher realm and that is their goal. That would be more in fitting with how Sovereign acts in ME1.

#35 Posted by JasonR86 (9377 posts) -
#36 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11005 posts) -

Well, that ending sounds preeeettyyy dumb too. Not sure if I'd have been any more supportive of it.

#37 Edited by feliciano182 (100 posts) -

*Cracks Knuckles*

@Korolev said:

The ending in ME3 does NOT make sense - "we have to kill you to prevent you from making AI that will kill all life - why couldn't we just, with our superior technology, HELP you defeat rogue AI - well we just can't. Don't ask questions."

Yet another incorrect interpretation of the ending.

First, artificial intelligence has the right to live as well, The Catalyst would've never provided organics with the means of opposing synthetics because his purpose is to find a way to preserve both "sides" of the organic / synthetic equation; not to say that your solution is pointless, since organics would still create artificial intelligence, which would again rise, only to be opposed and obliterated, creating an endless circle of continuous genocide.

Second, The Catalyst is working on logic that is acceptable to his pragmatic frame of mind, he is a detached, ageless being who believes that his solution works because it fits with his criteria of what a solution to an organic / synthetic conflict is, you are not supposed to look at the writers and criticize them, you are supposedly to look at The Catalyst and tell him that he's wrong.

@ArbitraryWater:

Well, that ending sounds preeeettyyy dumb too. Not sure if I'd have been any more supportive of it.

Credit's due where credit's due, that ending is nothing short of a tribute to great minds like Carl Sagan and Stephen Hawking, as well as the enlightement we can achieve from scientific knowledge, specifically in this case, astrophysics and theoretical physics; it acknowledges Dark Energy as the real, living threat to the universe that it is, by that much it deserves some degree of respect.

#38 Edited by AngriGhandi (683 posts) -

That original ending probably would have functioned better, if for no other reason than it gives the Mass Effect universe something new to worry about after the Reapers. Some kind of through-line for whatever comes next-- as opposed to the current endings, which kind of leave the problems of the galaxy either mostly wrapped up, completely wrapped up, or completely wrapped up. (Depending on which one you chose.)

As a side note, my personal theory was always that the Reapers would ultimately be revealed to be problem-solving machines that went crazy trying to compute a solution to the heat death of the universe, and then started trying to absorb everyone in order to find that solution. And the original ending sounds like it was meant to be a less astrophysics-heavy version of that! So I feel smart.

#39 Posted by Legion_ (1204 posts) -

This is actually a pretty deep rabbit hole. There's a lot of super interesting information about how the story in ME3 was originally going to be. It got me super depressed and bumbed out about the current state of ME3, so I stopped digging. I think the dark energy thing sounds very interesting, and certainly more interesting than synthetics vs. organics. In the end though, I really enjoyed ME3 for what it was, but the whole reasoning behind the Reapers felt so rushed. A damn shame.

#40 Edited by Dylabaloo (1549 posts) -

I like the idea of the Reapers harvesting each species every cycle in a morally twisted but pragmatically logical solution of preservation. As Brad said in the Bombcast (Or maybe Leviathan video) it makes you look at the universe as a galatic sized petri dish. The Dark Energy ending just seems quite stale in my opinion and the fact that it gives you two end game choices would definitely irked people off the same way.  
 
The problem was not the idea but execution, the choice should have been made by your past choices, the War Assets system should have been better constructed and had cinematics for a final battle involving each (Similar to the Normandy upgrades at the end of 2) If they wanted to have a choice at the end it should have been Accept or Reject, accept would lead to a choice based off your cumulative choices and reject would lead to an all out battle based on your War Assets and choices. 
 
Hindsight is a hell of a thing though and it saddens me that such an ambitious and carefully crafted Universe has fallen flat on its face and become a mockery in the eyes of many. Maybe time will help it recover, I really do hope so, but more importantly I hope it doesn't deter any other developers to try create something as ambitious as Mass Effect. 

#41 Edited by feliciano182 (100 posts) -

@Dylabaloo:

I like the idea of the Reapers harvesting each species every cycle in a morally twisted but pragmatically logical solution of preservation. As Brad said in the Bombcast (Or maybe Leviathan video) it makes you look at the universe as a galatic sized petri dish. The Dark Energy ending just seems quite stale in my opinion and the fact that it gives you two end game choices would definitely irked people off the same way.

There's a reason why we never got the answers on LOST, people think they'd love having the answers, when nothing could be further from the truth.

The problem was not the idea but execution, the choice should have been made by your past choices, the War Assets system should have been better constructed and had cinematics for a final battle involving each (Similar to the Normandy upgrades at the end of 2) If they wanted to have a choice at the end it should have been Accept or Reject, accept would lead to a choice based off your cumulative choices and reject would lead to an all out battle based on your War Assets and choices.

Maybe it's just me, but frankly, I think this is a rather shallow criticism in the face of the concepts the ending is specifically talking about, how many modern science fiction yarns speak of transhumanism ? How many can effectively convey a metaphor for the battle between religion and science ?

Hell, is it possible that the writers of ME3, or someone among them, read Georg Hegel and decided to frame the ending under his dialectics ?

Thesis --> The Reapers must be destroyed.

Anti-thesis --> The Reapers must be controlled.

Synthesis --> The Reapers can be bypassed.

Regardless of how little our war assets affected our ending (and that's a shaky complaint), there's plenty to pick from the ending, sadly, we are doing none of the sort, and we'd rather justify our dissatisfaction by tearing it apart by finding non-existant plot holes, irrelevant inconsistencies and by complaining about a lack of gaming mechanics at work, as I said, a little shallow.

#42 Edited by Hrothdane (12 posts) -

To answer you closing statement:

1. Seeing war assets in action is a perfectly normal expectation.

2. Story problems do exist. Harbinger flying away without firing at the Normandy? Why did Mr. Catalyst need Sovereign to activate the Citadel Relay if he "is" the Citadel?

3. Details are always relevant in storytelling; thus, inconsistencies are relevant.

4. It is a game that is not Xenosaga and was not made by Hideo Kojima; there is a natural expectation of gameplay.

Furthermore, your understanding of Hegel's dialectic is pedestrian. Hegel only used thesis, antithesis, synthesis when describing a dialectic he attributed to Kant. Hegel's dialectic was abstract, negative, concrete. The actual German word he uses for the third step--what you call synthesis--is "Aufhebung." Sublimation probably captures his intended meaning the best. You seem to have based your analysis entirely on the use of the word "synthesis" and the fact that there are three options presented. Synthesis is a perfectly normal word for describing the combination of two things, and a set of three is hardly a rare occurrence in well, anything. Your analysis is also rather shallow in that his dialectic was meant to be general enough to apply to everything, so it should be widely applicable, even to things not intended to be.

In fact, let me have a go with another blue, green, and red trio:

Bubbles (abstract): You should be nice to everyone.

Buttercup (negative): You gotta be tough and mean to survive.

Blossom (concrete): You should be nice normally, but tough when you need to kick butt and save Townsville.

I have now proven that Craig McCracken based his design of the Powerpuff Girls off of Hegel's dialectic.

#43 Posted by Dylabaloo (1549 posts) -

@feliciano182 said:

@Dylabaloo:

I like the idea of the Reapers harvesting each species every cycle in a morally twisted but pragmatically logical solution of preservation. As Brad said in the Bombcast (Or maybe Leviathan video) it makes you look at the universe as a galatic sized petri dish. The Dark Energy ending just seems quite stale in my opinion and the fact that it gives you two end game choices would definitely irked people off the same way.

There's a reason why we never got the answers on LOST, people think they'd love having the answers, when nothing could be further from the truth.

The problem was not the idea but execution, the choice should have been made by your past choices, the War Assets system should have been better constructed and had cinematics for a final battle involving each (Similar to the Normandy upgrades at the end of 2) If they wanted to have a choice at the end it should have been Accept or Reject, accept would lead to a choice based off your cumulative choices and reject would lead to an all out battle based on your War Assets and choices.

Maybe it's just me, but frankly, I think this is a rather shallow criticism in the face of the concepts the ending is specifically talking about, how many modern science fiction yarns speak of transhumanism ? How many can effectively convey a metaphor for the battle between religion and science ?

Hell, is it possible that the writers of ME3, or someone among them, read Georg Hegel and decided to frame the ending under his dialectics ?

Thesis --> The Reapers must be destroyed.

Anti-thesis --> The Reapers must be controlled.

Synthesis --> The Reapers can be bypassed.

Regardless of how little our war assets affected our ending (and that's a shaky complaint), there's plenty to pick from the ending, sadly, we are doing none of the sort, and we'd rather justify our dissatisfaction by tearing it apart by finding non-existant plot holes, irrelevant inconsistencies and by complaining about a lack of gaming mechanics at work, as I said, a little shallow.

I'm pretty sure the larger philosophy behind the ending has been discussed and debated ad-nauseum. As it is a cinematic game, not a book, I found the mechanics that we were made collect had no substance. Instead they represented numbers rather than visual consequences I had come accustomed to from Mass Effect 2. Which lead to more disappointment, in this choice driven game, than the substance and material in the last choice.

#44 Posted by Aetheldod (3339 posts) -

Nah .... the execution is what made the endings so bad :(

#45 Posted by feliciano182 (100 posts) -

@Dylabaloo said:

I'm pretty sure the larger philosophy behind the ending has been discussed and debated ad-nauseum.

You'd be surprised.

As it is a cinematic game, not a book, I found the mechanics that we were made collect had no substance. Instead they represented numbers rather than visual consequences I had come accustomed to from Mass Effect 2. Which lead to more disappointment, in this choice driven game, than the substance and material in the last choice.

They did have consequences though, you can't be presented with the synthesis choice if you perform poorly, and Earth may receive extreme collateral damage as well, granted, these consequences are not as enticing, but they are hardly any different from what we were given in Mass Effect 1 and 2, which is nothing more than variations of the same singular outcome, albeit with a few changes in variables.

#46 Posted by Dylabaloo (1549 posts) -

@feliciano182 said:

@Dylabaloo said:

I'm pretty sure the larger philosophy behind the ending has been discussed and debated ad-nauseum.

You'd be surprised.

As it is a cinematic game, not a book, I found the mechanics that we were made collect had no substance. Instead they represented numbers rather than visual consequences I had come accustomed to from Mass Effect 2. Which lead to more disappointment, in this choice driven game, than the substance and material in the last choice.

They did have consequences though, you can't be presented with the synthesis choice if you perform poorly, and Earth may receive extreme collateral damage as well, granted, these consequences are not as enticing, but they are hardly any different from what we were given in Mass Effect 1 and 2, which is nothing more than variations of the same singular outcome, albeit with a few changes in variables.

The analogist feature to War Assets in Mass Effect 2 was the Normandy Ship upgrades, some had to be bought, some had to be gained through Missions (In most cases loyalty missions)

Here are two videos depicting the two extremes:

Now thats a whopping 5 minute difference between the two extremes with wide variation between the two.

Now this is precedented, I think it's fair to expect at the very least this level of variability. Lets skip ahead to Mass Effect 3, they are leading up to the big battle on Earth, the climatic finish that the game has hinged on, showtime! Well not so, I know its completely unrealistic to expect spotlight for every War Asset but what about the Major decisions, the Krogans, The Salarians, The Rachni, Geth etc. No all we were treated to was a brief speech by them before the battle while the actual battle does not live up to the potential that was set by Mass Effect 2, this very much disappointed me. My choices were distilled down to binary numbers, entirely interchangeable with each other so long as I hit a threshold, which unlocks another choice at the very end.

#47 Posted by feliciano182 (100 posts) -

@Dylabaloo said:

Now this is precedented, I think it's fair to expect at the very least this level of variability. Lets skip ahead to Mass Effect 3, they are leading up to the big battle on Earth, the climatic finish that the game has hinged on, showtime! Well not so, I know its completely unrealistic to expect spotlight for every War Asset but what about the Major decisions, the Krogans, The Salarians, The Rachni, Geth etc. No all we were treated to was a brief speech by them before the battle while the actual battle does not live up to the potential that was set by Mass Effect 2, this very much disappointed me. My choices were distilled down to binary numbers, entirely interchangeable with each other so long as I hit a threshold, which unlocks another choice at the very end.

I have to disagree, even with the differences between each video, the outcome is still the exact same:

The Suicide Mission is a success.

Now, obviously the variables change, what squadmates survive, your crew members, and other considerations are involved, but it's still a variation of a single ending, and the only difference between this and ME3 is that it was more polished and better presented in ME2.

Even in the case that this was so important, it still brings me back to my original argument, you're overlooking other relevant aspects, what about the philosophical implications of the ending ? What about the message it's trying to convey ? Were we not meant to reflect and ponder on what the writers tried to tell us with how the story ended ? Are videogamers incapable of thinking now ?

#48 Posted by LiquidPrince (15606 posts) -

@xyzygy said:

Yeah, what Ghostiet says above is what Karpyshyn wanted the ending to be like. Apparently. There are small hints in ME1 and huge ones in ME2, as well as the books written by him (the only good ones). It's no wonder why he left the series (and the studio). The new endings are utter and complete shit in contrast to what they could have been.

Really, because reading his pitch sounds ten times worse then what we ended up with.

#49 Posted by BulimicBalzac (77 posts) -

Mass Effect 2 had a great ending unfortunatetly it is only great on the first run through. Once you realize which choices that keep every member alive and the knowledge that you can complete it without a loss it loses some of its greatness.

Mass Effect 3 had great moments, every mission before Thessia. Thessia with Javak and Liara is a great treat. Unfortunately Kai Leng is the worst nemesis ever to show its face in modern gaming. Kai Leng is where Mass Effect 3 really started its downward spiral.

#50 Edited by xyzygy (9624 posts) -

@LiquidPrince said:

@xyzygy said:

Yeah, what Ghostiet says above is what Karpyshyn wanted the ending to be like. Apparently. There are small hints in ME1 and huge ones in ME2, as well as the books written by him (the only good ones). It's no wonder why he left the series (and the studio). The new endings are utter and complete shit in contrast to what they could have been.

Really, because reading his pitch sounds ten times worse then what we ended up with.

I think what the main issue was was that ME3 went so left field from what was originally intended. In the end, what was the point of the whole Dark Matter thing on Haestrom, and it's inclusion in the books and first two games?

A pitch is a pitch and we will never know how that ending would have went, but there is also the possibility they could have smoothed it out and made it much better than the ME3 ending. There is also the possibility it could have been worse... though I seriously doubt that, but whatever.

@BulimicBalzac said:

Mass Effect 3 had great moments, every mission before Thessia. Thessia with Javak and Liara is a great treat. Unfortunately Kai Leng is the worst nemesis ever to show its face in modern gaming. Kai Leng is where Mass Effect 3 really started its downward spiral.

It's a shame because the way I envisioned Kai Leng from his appearance in Retribution was actually really awesome. They made him ridiculous in the game, a complete joke. Apparently he's also in Deception but we all know about that book...

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