Walker's article really was disappointing. Not because I disagreed, but because I went into it hoping for some genuinely interesting points and got (as someone else brought up) strawman arguments and a whole lot of words that have nothing at all to do with people's actual issues. Same goes for Gary Whitta's diatribe.
I'm probably more in line with Jeff's opinion in that the ending was dumb for a lot of reasons, but they shouldn't change it, for what it's worth.
For anyone with perspective, I know I’m belaboring a point – a bad ending can ruin all, from prose to play – but the sad fact is: no other professional review of Mass Effect 3 factored this ending into their universally positive ratings for the game, even though many acknowledged it as a problem. Not being one to claim conspiracy is to blame, I’d rather point to the more obvious culprit: ineptitude. A critic that can’t realize that narrative is often as important as gameplay – especially in an RPG – and that poorly constructed endings tarnish narrative quality – especially as it is the last thing the audience sees – is a poor critic indeed.
Business at this scale is usually too complicated to chalk up to a single narrative thread. Apple did really well for a number of reasons, and Nintendo fell behind expectations on their handhold AND console for other reasons. Maybe a sizeable chunk of people prefer IOS gaming to regular handhelds, but pushing that possibility always felt like reading tea leaves. 1UP Yours used to make proclamations about the industry at large based on leaps of logic all the time and it was really annoying.
Alex, your tweets last night were entertaining and this piece was great. I'm more than a little bummed out by people who react to this stuff with "well what did you expect", as if it's bad to have criticisms or hope for more from entertainment.