What’s Wrong with Mass Effect 2?

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sravankb:
But anyways, I don't think I'm gonna argue with you anymore. This is getting us nowhere. Your opinion nor mine will change after this. Shamus hates ME2 and ME3, and I love these games. I will be sure to buy a limited edition of ME3 if one's available.

Good day to you, sir.

I wouldn't ask you to change your opinion, just to stop bashing Shamus for his.

But whatever, you said you're done, so if that's what you want then so be it.

After the fiasco that's DA2, I'm not really looking forward to much from EA-Bioware any more.

I'll certainly keep an eye on ME3, as I liked the previous two, but my expectations are pretty low.

Btw, ME-1 had more than a few huge, gaping plot holes, also. I was so stunned by the cinematics I didn't care, really. Despite Bioware trying to make it into one, it's not a movie, it's a video game. I'm a lot more forgiving concerning story in games than I am movies, I suppose.

It's not like they hired Harlan Ellison or John Brunner to write their story (but they should have).

Ghengis John:

Shamus Young:
At one point they fed colonists to the thresher maw in order to test the effects of feeding colonists to a thresher maw

No, they lured an alliance military unit to a thresher maw to test the combat viability of the thresher maw. They also were experimenting with being able to CONTROL thresher maws. You have forgotten some pretty important details here and built a case on those flaws (the phrase "A castle built on sand" springs to mind). I could go point by point but that isn't the issue. The issue here is not that you are using examples to build a thesis, but trying to use examples to support a conclusion. And you're shoehorning to do it. You should have double checked your facts or at least run this by someone playing the devil's advocate, someone presenting a differing opinion. From the looks of it though there is nobody on the staff who possesses one. I can't speak with absolute authority but it would seem you yourselves have fallen into a trap, groupthink.

That still proves that Cerberus targets humans more than aliens.

They fed colonists to Thresher Maws to lure an alliance patrol in, and have them get eaten by the Thresher Maws, just to test the combat viability of the Maws. Why the hell did they use humans and not, you know, aliens?

Sparrow:

Uh-huh. I'm not sure who this "we" you're refering to is. Some select crowd of well hidden gamers, maybe? Regardless, I'm just not seeing the points you're making. Most of these "plot hole" (yes, I like sarcastic air quotes) you're picking out just seem to be the most minute problems you could possibly pick on.

I mean, honestly, you're pissed because Shepard didn't whip out his/her phone and take a snapshot of the Reaper? What was he going to do next, upload it on his Facebook profile so his squadmates could all like it? The council wouldn't see the evidence in that case, I bet they all blocked Shep's friend requests.

If the Council is willing to accept a voice recording from a random Quarian as grounds to disbar their best agent without having him there to defend himself, I think having video/screenshot evidence of a Reaper would do just fine.

There are times when I truly hate the way things are taking when it comes to story writing in general. When things are being deliberately dumbed down and not enough attention is given to present different points of view for the sake of making big money.

But then I read an article like this to its conclusion to be reminded that if the overtly-rational, stuck up their own arses 'quality press' had its way...things would be JUST as bad if not worse.

I wish you much glorious vim alongside your rage Shamus. Because while you scream and shout, I will be enjoying Mass Effect 3 along with its prequels and their story. Bioware has its style of writing and it is not one that relies on overthinking every tiny little detail, such as your idol Tolkien did with his world. Instead it does something better - it confronts and presents different points of views through its characters and in a setting that ultimately servers to present their points of view within the world.

But I doubt you'll ever think on how rare such stories truly are in your life ever or how many of your ilk prefer to try and shout at how 'they make no sense therefore they must be bad'. Because you and a tiny fraction of the population happen to enjoy cold rationality, you think that every story should adhere to it. Whereas the best stories are, in fact, and always will be the ones that evoke something within the one getting to experience them.

I sincerely hope they continue to evoke such unbridled fury in you and all your kind. Because that means I will very likely love them immensely.

paulgruberman:

StriderShinryu:
This is pretty much the definition of the silliness I see amongst gamers these days (or at least many on The Escapist). You loved the first game and thought it had some amazing potential, then you invested in the second game and were disappointed because it wasn't essentially the same game as the first one. Odd way of thinking, perhaps, but I'll take it.

It's the next part, however, that makes no sense to me. You surmise that Bioware is going downhill and are reaching farther than they could possibly grasp. You even mentally create an extremely negative version of what the next game experience is going to be like though we've been given almost no details on it. Then you.. umm.. pretty much state that you'll unequivocally buy the game anyway. Huh?

You can love ME2, but still have things you'd like them to keep in mind for improvement, or avoid doing, in ME3. For some people it's the combat system, others it's plot elements.

Oh, of course. I'm not debating that at all. What I am puzzled by is this intense need to consider every game that is purchased as some sort of down payment on everything else that developer does. In game 1 you find potential but flaws. In game 2 you find missed potential and other flaws. Doesn't it logically follow, then, that you should at least be cautious about game 3?

Maybe, you know, wait until you get some real details on it before either A.) outright declaring you're buying it no matter what (only to whine later that it wasn't what you wanted) or B.) tearing it to shreds because your vision of the series doesn't seem to be matching what the actual developers are doing (even if you don't know enough about what they are doing to honestly say either way).

There's nothing wrong with liking a series but honestly stating there are flaws you'd like to see addressed.. the trouble is, that's not what's going on here.

Don't really agree on a whole lot in this article, but I thought I would point one thing out in particular:

Remember that one of the great challenges that Shepard is facing is that nobody believes in the Reapers. So here we have one, all of a sudden. Then Shepard boards it and ... blows it up? How about taking a video and putting it up on YouTube, Shepard? How about offering tours?

The Council already has video footage of Sovereign in action, both on Eden Prime and Citadel Station. They know that Sovereign was an enormous "ship" that was capable of taking on an entire fleet. They just don't buy into the idea of it being merely one of a vast race of ancient intelligent machines bent on wiping out all advanced life in the galaxy.

So what would you do? Make a video of the inside? Way to kill your own argument (why would an intelligent life form have a cabin?). Have scientists study it so that it can be dated back the millions of years of it's existence? Ask Cerberus how that worked out for them. I just don't see a scenario involving the derelict Reaper that would end in the Council recanting their sand-in-the-head position.

I lot of the things you point out in ME2 are explained and some other points you've misinterpreted, (I could go through point by point but I'm not arsed.) Perhaps not explained satisfactorally but you come across like you're nit-picking. It's sci-fi dude, suspension of disbelief is practially a requirement for enjoying it. The plot holes aren't even all that huge or, like the majority of plot holes, can be explained, (which includes that LotR one too by the way.)

I am concerned for the future of the series. It would suck to see, from such a solid start, the series to end up something less than it could be. The news that's come forward so far about it doesn't fill me with confidence.

At one point they fed colonists to the thresher maw in order to test the effects of feeding colonists to a thresher maw.

Did anyone else read this in GLaDOS's voice?

You pretty much posted this article shortly after the release of ME2. Short on things to nitpick at this week?

I love watching people with no appreciation for critical thinking spring to Bioware's defence by plugging plot holes with 'but it makes sense if you read this and think about this and put that in context.' Yeah? Well why isn't that brought up when it happens in the game? Good writing does not generate plot holes. Poor writing forgets to explain why people don't follow the obvious logic and have to go with something inferior because of something only vaguely touched upon and not brought up in the moment. Sci fi is regularly guilty of this because unlike fiction established in the 'real world', you can make up entire systems of logic to railroad characters into the choices you want them to be limited to, when much of this shit simply would not fly in the real world. And people buy into it, because it offers them a chance to demonstrate their superior familiarity with the canon. Everytime, for example, I hear someone criticise one of the Halo games for not having a story that is internally consistent, someone leaps to defend it by referencing a comic or novel in the extended universe.

Also, captcha gives me: 'milkin Ovum'. I'm just gonna leave that there.

Loonerinoes:
There are times when I truly hate the way things are taking when it comes to story writing in general. When things are being deliberately dumbed down and not enough attention is given to present different points of view for the sake of making big money.

But then I read an article like this to its conclusion to be reminded that if the overtly-rational, stuck up their own arses 'quality press' had its way...things would be JUST as bad if not worse.

I wish you much glorious vim alongside your rage Shamus. Because while you scream and shout, I will be enjoying Mass Effect 3 along with its prequels and their story. Bioware has its style of writing and it is not one that relies on overthinking every tiny little detail, such as your idol Tolkien did with his world. Instead it does something better - it confronts and presents different points of views through its characters and in a setting that ultimately servers to present their points of view within the world.

But I doubt you'll ever think on how rare such stories truly are in your life ever or how many of your ilk prefer to try and shout at how 'they make no sense therefore they must be bad'. Because you and a tiny fraction of the population happen to enjoy cold rationality, you think that every story should adhere to it. Whereas the best stories are, in fact, and always will be the ones that evoke something within the one getting to experience them.

I sincerely hope they continue to evoke such unbridled fury in you and all your kind. Because that means I will very likely love them immensely.

How is this in any way 'raging' or 'unbridled fury'? Give me a single quote from the article which conveys such a tone. I think you're simply attempting to discredit his argument by exaggerating his dislike for the game, and conveniently ignoring the part where he says how despite these flaws he still found it very good.

It's a sad world where people can't make any kind of criticism without being railed upon for being 'too negative'.

... Where to begin with this....

*****Holy Hell Wall Of Words Alert******

"If you do kill a character in the opening scene, then you'd expect the game to be that character working through the experience and growing as a human being. But Shepard is up and capping robots in seconds, and the whole "I was dead" thing has no impact on him as a character."

Last I checked they knock your previous Lvl 50 super shepard back down to lvl 1, for the chuck noris of mass effect, id say thats relearning everything you became. And capping a couple of weak androids as appose to Swarms of Geth Primes sounds fair enough of a "death hangover".

"They claim that all of the Cerberus agents you encountered in the previous game were "rogue elements," but that doesn't make any sense because this new Cerberus is both too competent and too focused to have countless rogue cells wasting resources and working counter to Cerberus goals."

I know you payed attention enough to the plot to see how many times Rouge cells would feed false reports to the Illusive Man, Hell Jacks Loyalty mission Case and Point. When your busy with world issues I think you want to leave the small stuff to your cell block commanders.

"Their trap depends on Shepard being an idiot and personally boarding their vessel, instead of blasting the ship at a distance or sending in a team of subordinates. "

Really? Ok I need to know how to get through the Omega 4 Relay, Let me just nuke the ship that can tell me how.. Great idea. Or better yet Let Chuck Norris Sit this one out while I send Tali and Mordin to go figure out how they do it on a supposedly inactive ship.

"They have the drop on him, the home field advantage, superior numbers, a more advanced ship, the guidance of a Reaper, and they still can't kill him, thus establishing themselves as bumbling fools. Worse, they didn't even need to beat him in a gunfight. They could just have flown off with him and left the Normandy behind."

If you listen to 1 of the 100 Times Harbinger talks he keeps saying "Preserve Shepards body, Preserve Shepard if you can", They wanted him for their human reaper, not dead. As for flying off if you payed attention they waited till they (tried) to Fry the Normandy so he couldnt not escape while they powered up the engines. But Edi Saved the Normandy from the surge and shepard escaped just before their engines came online. It takes a while to Power on and Heat up Colossal Space Ship engines, Its not like turning on your ceiling fan.

". His plan requires that Shepard blindly walk into a trap and escape anyway, which means his plan hinges on the gross incompetence of the enemy."

His plan relied on EDI to be Fast and Shepard to be Strong, Both of which are WELL known for those skills. Not only that it was the ONLY way to gain the info about the Mass Relay. If they had just went to the Reaper they wouldnt know what they were looking for or why. It was a necessary risk or the plot could not have advanced.

"Why didn't he blow up the supposedly helpless ship? Why didn't he look for the bridge / engineering and try to take control of it? Why didn't he have explosives for wrecking the ship once he was inside? What was his goal? What was he planning on doing if there hadn't been a trap?"

His Goal was a hell of a lot safer than your idea. "Get in, get the necessary data, GTFO". Seriously "Lets just bring 100 pounds worth of explosives on our back in a ship that could come online at any minute and fly away with us onboard". Even with that much a platoon worth of explosives would not be enough to take that thing down unless you fight your way to the correct spot (which btw they only learned BECAUSE they data mined the trap). Quite frankly when the ship that ripped my old Ship to shreds in seconds is powering up I wouldnt want to just chill and see if I can take it over somehow (I mean, let the 3 man team just fight their way to an unknown command point and fight off the entire collector fleet while the Normandy gets ripped to shreads, excellent idea.)

"Later, The Illusive Man finds a derelict Reaper. (And in classic Cerberus style, he sent a bunch of scientists on board without ever checking up on them, leaving them to die hilariously in the name of Idiot Science.) "

He said he lost contact with the crew that was working there, I think that means he was talking to them, Unless you think it went something like "Hey, Miranda, remember that crew i sent to the reaper a month ago, yea that one, you mind checking up on them? I kinda forgot about them. What no contact? O well, back to banging super-models"

"Remember that one of the great challenges that Shepard is facing is that nobody believes in the Reapers. So here we have one, all of a sudden. Then Shepard boards it and ... blows it up? How about taking a video and putting it up on YouTube, Shepard? How about offering tours?"

Great idea, IF he wasent TRAPPED by the reapers internal barriers. Or did you forget that the reaper locked him in there and the ONLY way out was to disable the reaper. As for video, i do agree with you on that one, would save him a hell of alot of headaches if he just got a helmet cam.

"But, if our only goal is to kill them, then why go to all this trouble to pass through the dangerous relay and fight them on their home turf? Why not just sit on this side of the relay and spawn-camp them? Maybe put down some mines for good measure.

In fact, why not just blow up the relay?"

Great idea, lets just pull up a lawn chair and crack open some beers while the reapers decide to show up, not like that base could help us or anything? Or you know, they might have more than 1 Relay, Hell they only damn well built the things, but who keeps spare relays or the ability to make them right? 2 Exits are for chumps. Real galactic super-beings only use 1 exit.
And BTW the goal wasent to kill them, (at least the Illusive mans wasent) The goal was to capture the base and see what they know. (Or be a idealist and blow it up because we do things our own way).

They are not plot holes in the least, Just because Cerberus dosent think like you dosent mean its a gaping plot hole. The game is actually very tight (at least ME2 is).

paulgruberman:

ShadowsofHope:

RedEyesBlackGamer:
I'm also amused that some people expect me to admit that Mass Effect 2 is a great game, almost objectively. I don't know why.

I'm amused that some people expect me to admit that Mass Effect 2 was a bad game, almost objectively. I don't know why.

OT: While some of your points are valid, Shamus, others are nitpicked situations within the game that you either didn't understand even with data and context from the actual narrative, or you just simply ignored such for sake of grasping at straws. I'm not sure which yet, as your thesis on the Thresher Maw scenario was patently false in terms of how it was explained in the game to begin with.

Not entirely sure how it's better that Cerberus was luring Alliance military teams as opposed to colonists. Nor how it alters the gist of the problem - why is Cerberus the organization used in ME2? Why not 'Boberus', a pro-human organization whose true background you learn while working for them in ME2, instead of trying to recast a square peg into your round plothole?

Because adding in an organization like such would be a blatant shoehorning of the universe with another vague organization like Cerberus that wouldn't really have any point to being there save to.. ehm, fill Mass Effect 2's plot? What is worse? Shoehorning and screwing around with established canon, or using material already there in established canon, and have you make morally ambiguous choices that you can't determine to be truly good or bad for the universe itself without the events of Mass Effect 3 coming into the picture later on?

As well, there is a major difference between civilians and military. If Cerberus wanted to test the Thresher Maw's combat abilities vs. a combat ready team and for how long they could control it to do such without interfering, then having defenseless civilians run about like ants while the Thresher Maw picks them off without a single challenge.. what would be the point of the scenario besides mindless killing? One situation has Cerberus killing armed soldiers that can hold out against the Thresher Maw with some luck and time and would give Cerberus an idea of Thresher effectiveness against military targets, and one has Cerberus just essentially not even needing to bother with the Thresher Maw. A single Cerberus agent could likely take on 10 colonists with only a few scratches, if they weren't armed and picked off one at a time.

You don't so much "Give the collector base to Cerberus" as you clear it out and give the Reaper IFF to Cerberus as you can't really move the thing yourself and nobody can get to it unless they have the IFF.
The question is why does it have to go to Cerberus? Last I checked, even though the Council insist that all your evidence if wrong, they're kind of on your side. As is the Alliance.
(It's a gameplay thing as destroying the base makes him want to kill you in 3 so Cerberus is an enemy, while giving him the tech will cause him to be indoctrinated by it so Cerberus can be an enemy as it has been announced that Cerberus is an enemy and The Illusive Man wants you dead in 3.)
As for destroying the Omega-4 Relay, nobody had ever destroyed a relay before, they weren't sure it could be done. Doing so kills everyone in the system.
Also; a big one you missed:
When the collectors abduct your crew right after getting the Reaper IFF, they manage to do so because none of your squad is onboard to fight them off. None of your crew is onboard because installing the Reaper IFF messed up the Normandy's systems so you were told to take the shuttle to your next mission, take every squad member with you, and decide who to take on the mission when you get off (The shuttle is roughly the size of a large sedan, and you can have up to 14 crew members ranging in size from Mordin to Grunt).
This seems much dumber than the collector ship mission. You leave your entire crew as sitting ducks, when you could have just left 12 of your squad behind.

SwimmingRock:

shadowform:

cynicalsaint1:
As for "false binary choices" what the hell do you expect them to do? Come up with every single conceivable option possible?

The problem isn't a binary choice, it's a false binary choice. How about we take the smart option, like...

"Hey, Citadel. This is Shephard. I am standing on a dead reaper fetus in the middle of a reaper factory right now. I'm sending you a picture and coordinates. Cerberus wants this place too, so if you don't want the pro-human superterrorist group building reapers you should probably send someone over here."

Yeah, I was honestly baffled that the ending cinematic with the ship not destroyed includes Shepard doing jack about it. I stared at my screen in disbelief that this idiot was just dropping the ball on possibly the most pressing issue regarding the survival of the entire galaxy by simply not bothering to mention it to anybody. Why the hell does TIM get the collector ship if I don't blow it up and why don't we even give the Council a call?

Well... because if Shepard had brought it up to the Council, either they would have to believe him (which would throw all the resources of the citadel behind Shepard and make the third game too easy) or not believe him (which would change them from being incompetent to ludicrously idiotic). Simply put: they aren't told because if they are, it would either resolve the plot, or kill the story with stupid.

Which, in its own little way, kills the story with stupid.

Souplex:
(It's a gameplay thing as destroying the base makes him want to kill you in 3 so Cerberus is an enemy, while giving him the tech will cause him to be indoctrinated by it so Cerberus can be an enemy as it has been announced that Cerberus is an enemy and The Illusive Man wants you dead in 3.)

And this is the thing about a lot of RPGs - lately Bioware has been a particular offender - that truly pisses me off. There is no choice in this decision. Either he is the antagonist, or he is the antagonist. While yes, requiring otherwise would force Bioware to basically make two games - one with cerberus allied with you, and another with them against you - but as is, you're gutting any feeling of agency from the game. It's like the decision to save or destroy the Rachni in ME1: the game tells you there's a difference. An NPC in ME2 tells you there was a difference. But there is never actually any hard change to gameplay that results from it.

If you're going to give the player a choice, then make sure they actually have a choice. Nothing pisses me off more in a game than making a decision, only to have the game say "Well screw you, you're going to play the game the way we want you and you're going to like it."

lordlillen:
erhm? why didnt shepard destroy the omega 4 relay? simple:
it would whipe out all life in that system and/or more.

AND they didn't even know destroying a Relay was possible.

PopcornAvenger:
After the fiasco that's DA2, I'm not really looking forward to much from EA-Bioware any more.

I'll certainly keep an eye on ME3, as I liked the previous two, but my expectations are pretty low.

Btw, ME-1 had more than a few huge, gaping plot holes, also. I was so stunned by the cinematics I didn't care, really. Despite Bioware trying to make it into one, it's not a movie, it's a video game. I'm a lot more forgiving concerning story in games than I am movies, I suppose.

It's not like they hired Harlan Ellison or John Brunner to write their story (but they should have).

... Really? You - you DO realize that ME1 has plot-holes because - surprise - it's just the beginning of the series, right? The Mass Effect series was designed from beginning to end to be a trilogy.

Shamanic Rhythm:

Loonerinoes:
There are times when I truly hate the way things are taking when it comes to story writing in general. When things are being deliberately dumbed down and not enough attention is given to present different points of view for the sake of making big money.

But then I read an article like this to its conclusion to be reminded that if the overtly-rational, stuck up their own arses 'quality press' had its way...things would be JUST as bad if not worse.

I wish you much glorious vim alongside your rage Shamus. Because while you scream and shout, I will be enjoying Mass Effect 3 along with its prequels and their story. Bioware has its style of writing and it is not one that relies on overthinking every tiny little detail, such as your idol Tolkien did with his world. Instead it does something better - it confronts and presents different points of views through its characters and in a setting that ultimately servers to present their points of view within the world.

But I doubt you'll ever think on how rare such stories truly are in your life ever or how many of your ilk prefer to try and shout at how 'they make no sense therefore they must be bad'. Because you and a tiny fraction of the population happen to enjoy cold rationality, you think that every story should adhere to it. Whereas the best stories are, in fact, and always will be the ones that evoke something within the one getting to experience them.

I sincerely hope they continue to evoke such unbridled fury in you and all your kind. Because that means I will very likely love them immensely.

How is this in any way 'raging' or 'unbridled fury'? Give me a single quote from the article which conveys such a tone. I think you're simply attempting to discredit his argument by exaggerating his dislike for the game, and conveniently ignoring the part where he says how despite these flaws he still found it very good.

It's a sad world where people can't make any kind of criticism without being railed upon for being 'too negative'.

This editor completely misses some of the details in ME2 that actually EXPLAIN everything he questioned. It's too damn long a list to write out and give specific details and arguments, and Pyrokinesis has already listed such examples, so yeah, go ahead and read that. We'll wait.

Ok, I was going to plan a big post, but others made my points clear. But I still have to say something.

I'm absolutely appalled at the, for lack of a better term, outright ignorance in the comments thread and, even worse, the article itself.

Blatant disregard for details, selective amnesia about certain plainly stated facts in game, twisting of details to make yours seem right...

It's bullshit is what it is.

This is the last time I read any of your articles. Yahtzee ignores details all the times when he goes over stories. We only need one of him.

At least he can be funny.

EDIT: Why in the flying fuck is every god damned gamer on this site becoming such a critic? It never used to be that bad.

And I swear, no one quote me and say "IT'S BECAUSE OLDER GAMES WERE BETTER HURDURHERPDERP". Games are getting better.

shadowform:

Souplex:
(It's a gameplay thing as destroying the base makes him want to kill you in 3 so Cerberus is an enemy, while giving him the tech will cause him to be indoctrinated by it so Cerberus can be an enemy as it has been announced that Cerberus is an enemy and The Illusive Man wants you dead in 3.)

And this is the thing about a lot of RPGs - lately Bioware has been a particular offender - that truly pisses me off. There is no choice in this decision. Either he is the antagonist, or he is the antagonist. While yes, requiring otherwise would force Bioware to basically make two games - one with cerberus allied with you, and another with them against you - but as is, you're gutting any feeling of agency from the game. It's like the decision to save or destroy the Rachni in ME1: the game tells you there's a difference. An NPC in ME2 tells you there was a difference. But there is never actually any hard change to gameplay that results from it.

If you're going to give the player a choice, then make sure they actually have a choice. Nothing pisses me off more in a game than making a decision, only to have the game say "Well screw you, you're going to play the game the way we want you and you're going to like it."

That's actually a result of voice acting and better graphics. That's the price we pay for "Progress". That's why DA: O is better than DAII. (Although it's also better from a gameplay perspective, a writing perspective, a character perspective, a general design perspective, ane very other perspective)

ZeroMachine:
Ok, I was going to plan a big post, but others made my points clear. But I still have to say something.

I'm absolutely appalled at the, for lack of a better term, outright ignorance in the comments thread and, even worse, the article itself.

Blatant disregard for details, selective amnesia about certain plainly stated facts in game, twisting of details to make your seem right...

It's bullshit is what it is.

This is the last time I read any of your articles. Yahtzee ignores details all the times when he goes over stories. We only need one of him.

At least he can be funny.

EDIT: Why in the flying fuck is every god damned gamer on this site becoming such a critic? It never used to be that bad.

And I swear, no one quote me and say "IT'S BECAUSE OLDER GAMES WERE BETTER HURDURHERPDERP". Games are getting better.

That is exactly how I feel about all of this.

ShadowsofHope:
Because adding in an organization like such would be a blatant shoehorning of the universe with another vague organization like Cerberus that wouldn't really have any point to being there save to.. ehm, fill Mass Effect 2's plot? What is worse? Shoehorning and screwing around with established canon, or using material already there in established canon, and have you make morally ambiguous choices that you can't determine to be truly good or bad for the universe itself without the events of Mass Effect 3 coming into the picture later on?

Its a good thing the ME universe already has another pro-human organization all ready to go. Terra Firma. Just do a quick find and replace through the script change Cerberus into Terra Firma and we're good to go. Making it Terra Firma instead of Cerberus solves about 50% of the major plot holes in the game, there are still some issues like the mission to nowhere but one little change would do a lot.

ZeroMachine:
EDIT: Why in the flying fuck is every god damned gamer on this site becoming such a critic? It never used to be that bad.

And I swear, no one quote me and say "IT'S BECAUSE OLDER GAMES WERE BETTER HURDURHERPDERP". Games are getting better.

Because criticism is good. When you are working on a project the least useful piece of feedback is, its good. For gaming as a medium to move forward into the wonderful things it has in store it needs criticism, it needs to know that X worked, Y didn't work as well and Z can go die in a fire.

Yes ME2 is a great game, some of the companion quests are pure gold, the combat is tighter and the mission hubs feel more alive but if the above is enough to get critical GOTY acclaim then why bother innovating or improving? Criticism is the way we gamers keep the companies honest and push them to make better and better games.

A scientific organization which is shown to be extremely smart yet makes tons of stupid decisions in the name of science and tests for the sake of testing.

If there is one thing I have gained from this article it is that Cerberus is just the Aperture Science of the ME universe.

fierydemise:

ZeroMachine:
EDIT: Why in the flying fuck is every god damned gamer on this site becoming such a critic? It never used to be that bad.

And I swear, no one quote me and say "IT'S BECAUSE OLDER GAMES WERE BETTER HURDURHERPDERP". Games are getting better.

Because criticism is good. When you are working on a project the least useful piece of feedback is, its good. For gaming as a medium to move forward into the wonderful things it has in store it needs criticism, it needs to know that X worked, Y didn't work as well and Z can go die in a fire.

Yes ME2 is a great game, some of the companion quests are pure gold, the combat is tighter and the mission hubs feel more alive but if the above is enough to get critical GOTY acclaim then why bother innovating or improving? Criticism is the way we gamers keep the companies honest and push them to make better and better games.

Perhaps I should have worded it better: What I see is beyond criticism. People saying things that aren't true, tearing things to pieces without stating what's good about it.

If all you say is negative, then you're doing nothing. People need to also see what was done right.

Not to mention the fact that far too many people hate things because of things that happened previously. Many times for things that make no sense. And they can't even be civil about it.

EA did it? IT SUCKS!

Mass Effect 3? IT'LL BE BAD BECAUSE OF 2! Also, just look at Dragon Age 2! THAT SUCKED, SO EVERYTHING NEW BIOWARE WILL DO WILL SUCK! And why did it suck? EA!

It's bullshit. It's pathetic. And I'm fucking sick of it.

EDIT: This isn't targeted at you or even Shamus. What I wanted to say to Shamus was before the edit. It's just me venting about how sick I am of today's gamer's mindset. It pisses me off.

ZeroMachine:

fierydemise:

ZeroMachine:
EDIT: Why in the flying fuck is every god damned gamer on this site becoming such a critic? It never used to be that bad.

And I swear, no one quote me and say "IT'S BECAUSE OLDER GAMES WERE BETTER HURDURHERPDERP". Games are getting better.

Because criticism is good. When you are working on a project the least useful piece of feedback is, its good. For gaming as a medium to move forward into the wonderful things it has in store it needs criticism, it needs to know that X worked, Y didn't work as well and Z can go die in a fire.

Yes ME2 is a great game, some of the companion quests are pure gold, the combat is tighter and the mission hubs feel more alive but if the above is enough to get critical GOTY acclaim then why bother innovating or improving? Criticism is the way we gamers keep the companies honest and push them to make better and better games.

Perhaps I should have worded it better: What I see is beyond criticism. People saying things that aren't true, tearing things to pieces without stating what's good about it.

If all you say is negative, then you're doing nothing. People need to also see what was done right.

Not to mention the fact that far too many people hate things because of things that happened previously. Many times for things that make no sense. And they can't even be civil about it.

EA did it? IT SUCKS!

Mass Effect 3? IT'LL BE BAD BECAUSE OF 2! Also, just look at Dragon Age 2! THAT SUCKED, SO EVERYTHING NEW BIOWARE WILL DO WILL SUCK! And why did it suck? EA!

It's bullshit. It's pathetic. And I'm fucking sick of it.

If you read the comment above, you will see that fierydemise is saying positive things about Mass Effect 2. Positive criticism that I and others who criticize elements of the game will happily echo. I don't think you'll find many out there who will say that Mass Effect 2 is universally terrible, because it isn't. It's on balance a good but flawed game.

Kahunaburger:

ZeroMachine:

fierydemise:

Because criticism is good. When you are working on a project the least useful piece of feedback is, its good. For gaming as a medium to move forward into the wonderful things it has in store it needs criticism, it needs to know that X worked, Y didn't work as well and Z can go die in a fire.

Yes ME2 is a great game, some of the companion quests are pure gold, the combat is tighter and the mission hubs feel more alive but if the above is enough to get critical GOTY acclaim then why bother innovating or improving? Criticism is the way we gamers keep the companies honest and push them to make better and better games.

Perhaps I should have worded it better: What I see is beyond criticism. People saying things that aren't true, tearing things to pieces without stating what's good about it.

If all you say is negative, then you're doing nothing. People need to also see what was done right.

Not to mention the fact that far too many people hate things because of things that happened previously. Many times for things that make no sense. And they can't even be civil about it.

EA did it? IT SUCKS!

Mass Effect 3? IT'LL BE BAD BECAUSE OF 2! Also, just look at Dragon Age 2! THAT SUCKED, SO EVERYTHING NEW BIOWARE WILL DO WILL SUCK! And why did it suck? EA!

It's bullshit. It's pathetic. And I'm fucking sick of it.

If you read the comment above, you will see that fierydemise is saying positive things about Mass Effect 2. Positive criticism that I and others who criticize elements of the game will happily echo. I don't think you'll find many out there who will say that Mass Effect 2 is universally terrible, because it isn't. It's on balance a good but flawed game.

That's why I edited my post, take a look.

ZeroMachine:
Perhaps I should have worded it better: What I see is beyond criticism. People saying things that aren't true, tearing things to pieces without stating what's good about it.

If all you say is negative, then you're doing nothing. People need to also see what was done right.

Not to mention the fact that far too many people hate things because of things that happened previously. Many times for things that make no sense. And they can't even be civil about it.

EA did it? IT SUCKS!

Mass Effect 3? IT'LL BE BAD BECAUSE OF 2! Also, just look at Dragon Age 2! THAT SUCKED, SO EVERYTHING NEW BIOWARE WILL DO WILL SUCK! And why did it suck? EA!

It's bullshit. It's pathetic. And I'm fucking sick of it.

Should every time I mention a fault in a game I have to mention a good thing about it too? Can I say that I thought UT2K4 was too floaty without also mentioning that it does Assault really well?

We all know Mordin was a great character and what not, ME2 has gotten lots of well-deserved praise for what it gets right at this point its a retread. Certain criticisms too are a retread, most of what Shamus said here he's said on his blog a number of times (while also mentioning that despite all that ME2 is a great game) and a decent chunk of spoiler warning was on this as well. However if I had to choose between more negative or positive commentary on a good game I'd choose negative for a simple reason, with anything of quality its easy to whitewash the flaws in our mind because we were so wowed by the game( or the book or the movie). Criticism helps remind us of the flaws so we can better consider the game as it actually was not as we would like to remember it.

fierydemise:

ZeroMachine:
Perhaps I should have worded it better: What I see is beyond criticism. People saying things that aren't true, tearing things to pieces without stating what's good about it.

If all you say is negative, then you're doing nothing. People need to also see what was done right.

Not to mention the fact that far too many people hate things because of things that happened previously. Many times for things that make no sense. And they can't even be civil about it.

EA did it? IT SUCKS!

Mass Effect 3? IT'LL BE BAD BECAUSE OF 2! Also, just look at Dragon Age 2! THAT SUCKED, SO EVERYTHING NEW BIOWARE WILL DO WILL SUCK! And why did it suck? EA!

It's bullshit. It's pathetic. And I'm fucking sick of it.

Should every time I mention a fault in a game I have to mention a good thing about it too? Can I say that I thought UT2K4 was too floaty without also mentioning that it does Assault really well?

We all know Mordin was a great character and what not, ME2 has gotten lots of well-deserved praise for what it gets right at this point its a retread. Certain criticisms too are a retread, most of what Shamus said here he's said on his blog a number of times (while also mentioning that despite all that ME2 is a great game) and a decent chunk of spoiler warning was on this as well. However if I had to choose between more negative or positive commentary on a good game I'd choose negative for a simple reason, with anything of quality its easy to whitewash the flaws in our mind because we were so wowed by the game( or the book or the movie). Criticism helps remind us of the flaws so we can better consider the game as it actually was not as we would like to remember it.

As I said to Kahunaburger, I edited my post- I wasn't targeting you. I could tell in an instant that you aren't the type of gamer I'm talking about.

I'm talking about the people that seem to ignore the good about games and state that the game sucks because of it.

Sparrow:
Seemed like a hell of a lot of nitpicking to me. People should really stop getting up in arms about the "stories" we're hearing about EA interfering with the franchise, all you're doing is upsetting yourselves. If some hard evidence comes out which clearly outlines EA's involvement in making the game worse in any way, I will eat my damn hat.

Developers under EA (and other Publishers too) every now and again out right come out and abuse their publishers for the draconian policies they are placed under.

That being said, the single reason Mass Effect 2 was a bad game, was because Bioware simply removed and replaced anything that was considered flawed in the first game, instead of fixing and improving on it.

Good points all around. I always though Shep should be really, REALLY bothered by the fact that she's brought back from the dead. Especially my Shep, seeing as she told Ashley in the first game that she believes in God. Being dead, then coming back would play major havoc on anyone, but people of faith would always have that nagging feeling, "Am I really me? Is science able to pull my very soul back, or am I a copy? What happens to this ME when I die?" These questions could wreck your life.
My only counter offer to the article is this--blowing up the relay would have killed untold thousands of people. It would have also brought the hammer down very, very quickly on Shep and Cerberus. Now, to fix this, perhaps someone should have brought this point up in a ship meeting in the game. "Why don't we just blow up their relay?"
"Um...because we'd be killing tens of thousands of people."
"Okay, so we tell them to move, then blow it up."
"Right. Who's going to let you destroy their home--even if it is crap--based on what a terrorist organization says about a threat that the rest of the universe doesn't believe is real? Next idea please." Problem solved.
Now, you may point out that Shep blew up the relay and killed 300,000 batarians. I point out that she didn't have a choice. It was either kill 300,000 right then, or lose the entire galaxy in the matter of a few days. Not a fair choice, but an obvious one.

Sniper Team 4:
Good points all around. I always though Shep should be really, REALLY bothered by the fact that she's brought back from the dead. Especially my Shep, seeing as she told Ashley in the first game that she believes in God. Being dead, then coming back would play major havoc on anyone, but people of faith would always have that nagging feeling, "Am I really me? Is science able to pull my very soul back, or am I a copy? What happens to this ME when I die?" These questions could wreck your life.
My only counter offer to the article is this--blowing up the relay would have killed untold thousands of people. It would have also brought the hammer down very, very quickly on Shep and Cerberus. Now, to fix this, perhaps someone should have brought this point up in a ship meeting in the game. "Why don't we just blow up their relay?"
"Um...because we'd be killing tens of thousands of people."
"Okay, so we tell them to move, then blow it up."
"Right. Who's going to let you destroy their home--even if it is crap--based on what a terrorist organization says about a threat that the rest of the universe doesn't believe is real? Next idea please." Problem solved.
Now, you may point out that Shep blew up the relay and killed 300,000 batarians. I point out that she didn't have a choice. It was either kill 300,000 right then, or lose the entire galaxy in the matter of a few days. Not a fair choice, but an obvious one.

I need sleep. I actually almost corrected you on the "she" part O_o I apologize for my brain.

ZeroMachine:
EDIT: Why in the flying fuck is every god damned gamer on this site becoming such a critic? It never used to be that bad.
...
EA did it? IT SUCKS!
...

To be fair, for many people, recent sequels published by EA have not lived up to expectations. See: Battlefield, Crysis, Medal of Honor, Dragon Age, Mass Effect (as evidenced by this article).

I'm also certain you're overreacting because I see an equal amount of praise and criticism (even in this thread) wherever I go on this site (Except on The Jimquisition). And telling people that they're pathetic...well...civility...

perpetualburn:

ZeroMachine:
EDIT: Why in the flying fuck is every god damned gamer on this site becoming such a critic? It never used to be that bad.
...
EA did it? IT SUCKS!
...

To be fair, for many people, recent sequels published by EA have not lived up to expectations. See: Battlefield, Crysis, Medal of Honor, Dragon Age, Mass Effect (as evidenced by this article).

I'm also certain you're overreacting because I see an equal amount of praise and criticism (even in this thread) wherever I go on this site (Except on The Jimquisition). And telling people that they're pathetic...well...civility...

A) Relatively fair point, but Mass Effect 2 was one of the most well received games of last year, most people feel it lived up to expectations. Not saying those that didn't get what they wanted are wrong in any way, just making a point. But there's a difference between being cautious and instantly damning something because of a past mistake.

B) I'm grateful every damn time I see people giving both positive and negative, but there are far too many times I see just blatant bashing for no reason, or for the wrong reasons (if you don't like something, fine, but get your facts straight before you bash something).

C) I'm not calling people pathetic- I'm saying the way the specific people I'm talking about are acting is pathetic. There's a big difference. Even a great man can act pathetic sometimes.

Kahunaburger:
IRL military commanders don't engage in romantic relationships with their subordinates, and there are reasons they don't do this. A character-driven and relationship-driven game completely missing this fact is pretty strange.

As a member of the (US) armed services, I just wanna let you know that you're absolutely right. Fraternization can affect morale and result in favoritism, further affecting morale and, by extension, the mission. Not to mention both parties could get into a lot of shit (especially the officer).

Then again, the ME series takes place some two centuries into the future. Rules could change by then - that's how I look at it (and goddamn does some of that stuff about the military infrastructure in the series). :/

Agayek:

The fact that TIM turned to Shepard and said "Oh hey, sorry our dudes tried to kill you, they weren't really with us" is kind of a big hint that he knew about them.

In the same way I'm aware of white supremacy groups and, had I been following a guy very closely, would have known when a group claiming to be affiliated with me tried to harm him.

Agayek:

Actually, it's usually either Batman pulling a deus ex machina out of his pocket or his captor being an incompetent idiot. See, when you capture Batman, here's how you keep him locked up: Strip him, wrap him in steel and throw him into an 80 foot deep sheer pit.

You've never read one of the Jokers comic books have you? He tried that, and Batman escaped. They did the exact equivilant of that to Sheperd - they sent their gigantic fuck-off aerial weapons after him, and the guy took them out too. Like I said, Sheperd is that awesome.

Agayek:
The fact that the people who catch him just tie him up, after he's repeatedly proven to be able to escape, is only proof that they're stupid.

Bane crippled Batman and he got out of that. Try to inform yourself occasionally.

Agayek:

1) Why does it matter what the Collector's were? That information does fuck all. We already knew the Reapers were going to indoctrinate everyone everywhere until Husks were all that were left.

2) As discussed below, going through the relay was a dumb idea in the first place. Even beyond that, how did they know that Reaper IFFs would work? Why would the Reapers even have an IFF in the first place?

And since the Collector's only have one ship, why the hell do they need a non-hardcoded ID system at all?

1. It tells you of the nature of the enemy they're fighting - what the Reapers are capable of and what their intentions are. It also tells them how to fight the threat off.

2. They didn't know that, but it was their one and only lead. Besides, they had EDI - if it could be read, EDI could read it.

3. What the hell does that even mean?

Agayek:

1) It's not the Reapers coming through the Omega 4 relay. It's the Collector's, big difference.

2) And if the scout goes back and says for the main force not to come through, the problem is solved. It doesn't matter if they survive or not, so long as they leave your shit alone. If the only way in to the Collector area is the Omega 4 relay, it's also the only way out. If they can't get out through the O4, then the problem is contained.

Also, Shepard does destroy the relay the Reapers are coming through, about an hour before they arrive. Nice try though.

1. Yes, FOR NOW. They are hinking long term here, a thing both you and Shamus seem very very bad at. The Reapers will use the relays to come through.

2. No, telling them not to come through THAT WAY is not the ssame as not comign back period.

Look, here's how it works. The Reapers will stop at nothing to wipe out all life in the galaxy. STOP. AT. NOTHING. However, the Relay adds a degree of predictability - we know their most likely point of attack. If we destroy this, they will fall back, develop a new means of transport and we have lost the predictability - hell, the only reason they didn't destroy the Relay themselves is cause they didn't realise Shepard had the means to use it.

Agayek:

Game reviews and rankings have changed substantially over the last decade. It's not really a valid metric by which to compare games made a decade apart. That said, considering BG2 and KOTOR both have twice the number of reviews, and all 3 games are within 1% of each other on the same platform, I'm not sure you can definitively state any of them are better than the others by aggregate review score alone.

The best part though is that you think you can actually quantify a subjective measure.

You mean like you did when you said without qualification of any description at all that KOTOR is better than Mass Effect 2.

You'll notice I brought something other than my own opinion. You used faulty logic to dismiss the accumulated opinion, instead insisting that Baldurs Gate 2 is better because....no reason at all given.

CalPal:

... Really? You - you DO realize that ME1 has plot-holes because - surprise - it's just the beginning of the series, right? The Mass Effect series was designed from beginning to end to be a trilogy.

What, it was a series? *blink-blink*

Heh. No, these were inconsistencies in the plot, sometimes huge ones, not things to be filled out later. All that stuff was debated over and over on the ME forums. Again, I really didn't mind them, though, as I for the most part I liked the character and the gameplay. Unless the story's real crap do I get kinda -_- .

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