BioShock Creator "Sad" Over ME3's Ending Scandal

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Therumancer:

The differance here of course being that Dicken's ending fit the story he was telling even if it was a downer. The problem with the ending of ME3 is it does not fit with the rest of the game, and the spirit in which it was created.

People tend to overlook the simple fact that Bioware annouced that they planned to turn the trilogy into a franchise, and then we get this "do nothing" ending. There isn't really any artistic integrity involved here, if anything the ending is a result of that integrity being thrown out for the pursuit of money as it's contrary to everything the game stood for up until this point.

I'll also say that every time I read this thread I can't help but snicker given that the creator of "Bioshock" certainly got his share of criticism for "Bioshock 2" a lot of which was negative. I certainly don't seem to be alone in the suspician that he decided to move away from "Rapture" into "Bioshock: Infinite" and it's sky enviroment in part for that reason. To be honest he's sort of flying off the reception from the first game, if his writing is like the second game as opposed to the first and doesn't have an ending that satisfies people (please not that doesn't need to be a high fantasy ending, just one that the majority of people feel fits the game and are satisfied with) he's probably going to be in a similar position to Bioware. Granted he didn't drop the ball to the extent of "Dragon Age 2" and pull the attitude Bioware has been, so it won't be as bad, but the results will be similar. I kind of wonder if he's sort of reacting to being put "on notice" so to speak, with the realization that a few other missteps and this could have been him.

Of course that is a matter of opinion. Clearly the advice Dickens got was in the spirit of a happier ending that would fit with the story. The fans must have liked it, he wasn't ostracized. However I think it is a sell-out moment in Dickens writing career.

Overall though, the argument against Bioware doesn't hold water and is complete hearsay. That doesn't necessarily make the suggestion false. Your conjecture could be true, but since there is no direct evidence, it remains invalid. The desire to make Mass Effect a franchise does not necessitate a poor or tacked on ending. They are fully capable of ending Shepard's story and yet continue to make games in the Mass Effect universe. Players' responses have already shown that there is plenty of love for other characters and that Bioware is capable of developing multiple engaging characters.

Also, Bioware's initial response to the desire for a new ending contradicts the commonly used argument that the ending is influenced by a desire to make more money by selling DLC and future games. The company has repeated stated that this would be the end of Shepard's story, and they initially said that they would stick with the ending as is. Their stance on the ending was only changed AFTER the push by the fan base for a new ending. Perhaps this is just a really complex plot to get us to buy new ending DLC, but personally I will refrain from wearing that tin foil hat. And unless we find out a new Shepard ME is in the works I won't presume they are changing their initial intentions.

I will not comment on DA2 because I still don't really get people's beef with the game. However I will point out that your comments about Ken Levine and Bioshock 2 are unfounded as he was not involved with the project (http://www.joystiq.com/2010/08/12/ken-levine-why-irrational-didnt-do-bioshock-2-what-he-thought/). So suggesting that he is trying to cover his own less than adequate games by changing settings and forgetting about it are wrong, there is no cause to "put him on notice", and his comments about ME3 have no reason to be tied to any of his projects.

Edit: I would like to add that I have no problem with criticism against Bioware, their ending, or how it did or did not fit the story/game/vision. Go for it! I am merely trying to point out that unless we talk to the writers and the devs we can't know if they cut/changed/or limited their ending for financial reasons. As hard as it may be to admit the ending we got could easily be the ending intended...

insanity00:

Therumancer:

The differance here of course being that Dicken's ending fit the story he was telling even if it was a downer. The problem with the ending of ME3 is it does not fit with the rest of the game, and the spirit in which it was created.

People tend to overlook the simple fact that Bioware annouced that they planned to turn the trilogy into a franchise, and then we get this "do nothing" ending. There isn't really any artistic integrity involved here, if anything the ending is a result of that integrity being thrown out for the pursuit of money as it's contrary to everything the game stood for up until this point.

I'll also say that every time I read this thread I can't help but snicker given that the creator of "Bioshock" certainly got his share of criticism for "Bioshock 2" a lot of which was negative. I certainly don't seem to be alone in the suspician that he decided to move away from "Rapture" into "Bioshock: Infinite" and it's sky enviroment in part for that reason. To be honest he's sort of flying off the reception from the first game, if his writing is like the second game as opposed to the first and doesn't have an ending that satisfies people (please not that doesn't need to be a high fantasy ending, just one that the majority of people feel fits the game and are satisfied with) he's probably going to be in a similar position to Bioware. Granted he didn't drop the ball to the extent of "Dragon Age 2" and pull the attitude Bioware has been, so it won't be as bad, but the results will be similar. I kind of wonder if he's sort of reacting to being put "on notice" so to speak, with the realization that a few other missteps and this could have been him.

Of course that is a matter of opinion. Clearly the advice Dickens got was in the spirit of a happier ending that would fit with the story. The fans must have liked it, he wasn't ostracized. However I think it is a sell-out moment in Dickens writing career.

Overall though, the argument against Bioware doesn't hold water and is complete hearsay. That doesn't necessarily make the suggestion false. Your conjecture could be true, but since there is no direct evidence, it remains invalid. The desire to make Mass Effect a franchise does not necessitate a poor or tacked on ending. They are fully capable of ending Shepard's story and yet continue to make games in the Mass Effect universe. Players' responses have already shown that there is plenty of love for other characters and that Bioware is capable of developing multiple engaging characters.

Also, Bioware's initial response to the desire for a new ending contradicts the commonly used argument that the ending is influenced by a desire to make more money by selling DLC and future games. The company has repeated stated that this would be the end of Shepard's story, and they initially said that they would stick with the ending as is. Their stance on the ending was only changed AFTER the push by the fan base for a new ending. Perhaps this is just a really complex plot to get us to buy new ending DLC, but personally I will refrain from wearing that tin foil hat. And unless we find out a new Shepard ME is in the works I won't presume they are changing their initial intentions.

I will not comment on DA2 because I still don't really get people's beef with the game. However I will point out that your comments about Ken Levine and Bioshock 2 are unfounded as he was not involved with the project (http://www.joystiq.com/2010/08/12/ken-levine-why-irrational-didnt-do-bioshock-2-what-he-thought/). So suggesting that he is trying to cover his own less than adequate games by changing settings and forgetting about it are wrong, there is no cause to "put him on notice", and his comments about ME3 have no reason to be tied to any of his projects.

Edit: I would like to add that I have no problem with criticism against Bioware, their ending, or how it did or did not fit the story/game/vision. Go for it! I am merely trying to point out that unless we talk to the writers and the devs we can't know if they cut/changed/or limited their ending for financial reasons. As hard as it may be to admit the ending we got could easily be the ending intended...

As far as Mass Effect 3 goes, it comes directly from what Bioware has itself said. They have been clear recently about not wanting to end the series after "3" now and turn it into a franchise. They were also clear about having plotted it out from the very beginning. Information coming from that $3 app people have been talking about has the writers cooking up the ending as they were finishing the project. Not only is that damning evidence in their own words of deceit given that the people claiming that the ending was going to answer everything and not be an "A B or C" choice and so on were not being truthful. It also shows that as they were developing an ending they were diverging from the original plans since the storyline had already been planned out as far back as ME1 as opposed to them making it up chapter by chapter. It's not hearsay, but circumstantial evidence, while this case wouldn't hold in a criminal trial, it would be a big deal in a civil one where the standards of proof are differant, and that's probably why gamers have been able to find lawyers willing to take the case for fraud and false advertising to court. As much as some Bioware defenders might like the point, it's pretty damning overall, I didn't just assume the stance I'm taking for the heck of it.

The most commonly used arguement about the ending is not that it will sell DLC, but that the ending, which the writers themselves admit was intended to answer very little and end in a cloud of speculation, was intended to leave the series as open as possible to a future sequel. The intentionally decided NOT to reveal the answers to various questions as originally planned, despite the promises to do so. If you do a search for the $2.99 app they wanted to sell and find the stuff on the interviews there is a lot of interesting stuff there that has been fueling a lot of this, especially when you compare it to other statements by Bioware.

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The point about Dickens is that both endings fit the kind of romantic story he was telling even if the resolution differed. The issue with Mass Effect 3 is that the ending does not fit within the fairly upbeat, bigger than life, high fantasy space opera that the series is. The ending we got would have been fine in another type of science fantasy, but not in this story, as it goes against the entire tone of the series up until that point.

It would be like Dickens deciding to end "Great Expectations" with a sudden alien abduction, that might be a great finale to many stories, but doesn't fit with that kind of story.

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As far as Levine goes, I'll concede your point there, though even without a personal stake I do think he tends to get kind of artsy with his stuff and he probably does have some concern over these turns of events.

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With "Dragon Age 2" the big beef is a matter of Bioware asking people if it was okay to seriously reduce the character generation options in the game, they were told "no" and then not only did it anyway but claimed there was massive fan support for it.

When the game was released it was a glorified brawler with horrible mechanics, monsters popping out of nowhere or dropping off rooftops, and spawning in waves. You couldn't block with warriors to keep things off your mages despite the intent declared in the loading screens for example, and you'd run into situations where you walk down a hallway and a spider the size of an elephant will just suddenly spawn on top of your squishier characters, no chance to prepare for the fight or anything. They continually recycled the same enviroments, ignored desicians made in the first game (despite sharing data), and oh yeah... had a crappy ending that resolves nothing. Your ending is your character disappears and you have no idea what happened to him or her! :)

This annoyed people greatly, and helped pave the way for this current situation. It's noteworthy because understand that this is the second game that has gotten massive fan backlash (as opposed to a tiny minority of people), it's just that this time is far worse, DA2 was given a pass of sorts as "anyone can drop the ball now and again" even if people were irritated, but now this is two in a row... and really Bioware's attitude towards it's fans has been pretty horrible overall which doesn't help matters. All of the gouging over DLC and things like that has also helped to build the rage and dislike. This explosion is over a lot of things, all of which contributed to it, with the focus being on the ending of ME3.

See, even if Bioware fixes the ending of ME3 and comes up with something acceptable to everyone, it's still going to have to do a lot to rebuild bridges with it's fan base, including becoming a bit less greedy with the DLC and such. Resolving the issue at the focus of this disaster will help in the short term, but if other things keep building they will lead to another explosion.

I think the industry watching this needs to understand that there is a limit to how far gamers can be pushed, and this explosion shows where the lines are being drawn.

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I'm not sure where you got the conspiricy to sell us DLC thing from to be honest, mostly I tend to hear people saying that if they don't fix the ending they won't buy any DLC. In my case I felt DA2 was such a mess I refused to buy any of the DLC to support it, and the same is going to apply to ME3 unless they make good (in DA2 the problems went beyond just fixing the ending) It's very simple, and I think a lot of people feel the same way, I do notice the plans for DA2 DLC got quashed with the last bit being cancelled, so I'm guessing they weren't moving enough DLC to justify it.

In short I think the attitude is more "fix this, or you won't sell me any more DLC" rather than they did it to sell DLC.

Therumancer:

As far as Mass Effect 3 goes, it comes directly from what Bioware has itself said. They have been clear recently about not wanting to end the series after "3" now and turn it into a franchise. They were also clear about having plotted it out from the very beginning. Information coming from that $3 app people have been talking about has the writers cooking up the ending as they were finishing the project. Not only is that damning evidence in their own words of deceit given that the people claiming that the ending was going to answer everything and not be an "A B or C" choice and so on were not being truthful. It also shows that as they were developing an ending they were diverging from the original plans since the storyline had already been planned out as far back as ME1 as opposed to them making it up chapter by chapter. It's not hearsay, but circumstantial evidence, while this case wouldn't hold in a criminal trial, it would be a big deal in a civil one where the standards of proof are differant, and that's probably why gamers have been able to find lawyers willing to take the case for fraud and false advertising to court. As much as some Bioware defenders might like the point, it's pretty damning overall, I didn't just assume the stance I'm taking for the heck of it.

The most commonly used arguement about the ending is not that it will sell DLC, but that the ending, which the writers themselves admit was intended to answer very little and end in a cloud of speculation, was intended to leave the series as open as possible to a future sequel. The intentionally decided NOT to reveal the answers to various questions as originally planned, despite the promises to do so. If you do a search for the $2.99 app they wanted to sell and find the stuff on the interviews there is a lot of interesting stuff there that has been fueling a lot of this, especially when you compare it to other statements by Bioware.

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The point about Dickens is that both endings fit the kind of romantic story he was telling even if the resolution differed. The issue with Mass Effect 3 is that the ending does not fit within the fairly upbeat, bigger than life, high fantasy space opera that the series is. The ending we got would have been fine in another type of science fantasy, but not in this story, as it goes against the entire tone of the series up until that point.

It would be like Dickens deciding to end "Great Expectations" with a sudden alien abduction, that might be a great finale to many stories, but doesn't fit with that kind of story.

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As far as Levine goes, I'll concede your point there, though even without a personal stake I do think he tends to get kind of artsy with his stuff and he probably does have some concern over these turns of events.

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With "Dragon Age 2" the big beef is a matter of Bioware asking people if it was okay to seriously reduce the character generation options in the game, they were told "no" and then not only did it anyway but claimed there was massive fan support for it.

When the game was released it was a glorified brawler with horrible mechanics, monsters popping out of nowhere or dropping off rooftops, and spawning in waves. You couldn't block with warriors to keep things off your mages despite the intent declared in the loading screens for example, and you'd run into situations where you walk down a hallway and a spider the size of an elephant will just suddenly spawn on top of your squishier characters, no chance to prepare for the fight or anything. They continually recycled the same enviroments, ignored desicians made in the first game (despite sharing data), and oh yeah... had a crappy ending that resolves nothing. Your ending is your character disappears and you have no idea what happened to him or her! :)

This annoyed people greatly, and helped pave the way for this current situation. It's noteworthy because understand that this is the second game that has gotten massive fan backlash (as opposed to a tiny minority of people), it's just that this time is far worse, DA2 was given a pass of sorts as "anyone can drop the ball now and again" even if people were irritated, but now this is two in a row... and really Bioware's attitude towards it's fans has been pretty horrible overall which doesn't help matters. All of the gouging over DLC and things like that has also helped to build the rage and dislike. This explosion is over a lot of things, all of which contributed to it, with the focus being on the ending of ME3.

See, even if Bioware fixes the ending of ME3 and comes up with something acceptable to everyone, it's still going to have to do a lot to rebuild bridges with it's fan base, including becoming a bit less greedy with the DLC and such. Resolving the issue at the focus of this disaster will help in the short term, but if other things keep building they will lead to another explosion.

I think the industry watching this needs to understand that there is a limit to how far gamers can be pushed, and this explosion shows where the lines are being drawn.

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I'm not sure where you got the conspiricy to sell us DLC thing from to be honest, mostly I tend to hear people saying that if they don't fix the ending they won't buy any DLC. In my case I felt DA2 was such a mess I refused to buy any of the DLC to support it, and the same is going to apply to ME3 unless they make good (in DA2 the problems went beyond just fixing the ending) It's very simple, and I think a lot of people feel the same way, I do notice the plans for DA2 DLC got quashed with the last bit being cancelled, so I'm guessing they weren't moving enough DLC to justify it.

In short I think the attitude is more "fix this, or you won't sell me any more DLC" rather than they did it to sell DLC.

I appreciate the clear and cogent response. I would like to respond in kind.

I did not mean to suggest that you were taking your stance for the heck of it. I intend/ed to suggest that your stance may not be as certain as many have claimed it to be. It seems from what I could find about the 2.99 app that the end of the game was moderately well ironed out before August, they knew it would involve the illusive man, they knew the scene and the setting, they just wanted to hammer out the details and make it fit. I may be giving BW more credit than they deserve or misreading it, but that was what I got out of it. And again, I don't see how wanting to make more Mass Effect games necessitates the devs to take short cuts with the ending. They have shown a lot of skill in creating new universes and expanding on established ones without touching on existing cannon.

Nonetheless, I concede the possibility that they changed the story/ending with the goal of encouraging later installments. And there is definitely some circumstantial evidence suggesting that was so.

For DA2 I never heard about the character gen options, just complaints about the story, dungeon reuse, combat, and ending. I didn't mind the combat, but I can see how people may have been disillusioned after DA:O. The dungeon reuse was REALLY dumb and annoying. I wasn't surprised considering the quick sequel turn-around, but it didn't change the fact that the dungeons broke immersion and screamed "lazy shortcuts". I enjoyed the story, the concentration on characters, and didn't mind the abrupt disappearance. It seemed to fit with the theme (and I have read similar books). Lastly, I didn't have any of the game play problems you and others had, so that may have colored my experience. That all said, of any BW game I have played, nothing has said "cash in" like DA2. So I see your point.

I got the DLC conspiracy not from you, but from many other discussions around the web. This issue has been blended in with the day-one DLC such that the tin hat folks are scared Bioware is out to screw them anyway they can.

I wonder how big the fan backlash really is. I have heard numbers like 50,000 thrown around, and even presuming that is only 10% of the total, then less than 15% of initial adopters are unhappy with the ending. I'm sure BW has a better idea of the actual numbers, I am just speculating and curious.

Overall as a consumer of many types of media, and someone fully aware how few gamers actually "beat" most games, especially longer games like ME3, it is amazing, and kinda awesome that the ending has garnered such a strong response. It shows how important this story has been for people, an aspect not often celebrated in games. I also REALLY enjoy playing the game from story to game play I love it. And having gone back to play ME1 last summer, ME2 and 3 for my money, have far superior controls, engagement, and story than the first installment.

In my opinion, Bioware has to look at the reasons for their story and game development and move ahead based on those. If they can honestly say they this was their vision, this was what they wanted the game to be, more power to them. If however they changed development, planning, or story purely for economic or business reasons, they need to readdress their approach to game development. Either way, only they can know the answer, and only we can tell them if we approve...by voting with our dollars.

OMG this is still being debated?

Bioware dropped the ball and released a flawed product that you bought. Big deal. Shitty products get released all the time. Get over it. I watched "I am Legend" and I didn't like it but you don't see me filing a FTC compliant over it do you?

Jesus christ, talk about being an Otaku (obsessive fan).

deadish:
OMG this is still being debated?

Bioware dropped the ball and released a flawed product that you bought. Big deal. Shitty products get released all the time. Get over it. I watched "I am Legend" and I didn't like it but you don't see me filing a FTC compliant over it do you?

Jesus christ, talk about being an Otaku (obsessive fan).

Well this is more than just a single flawed product at this point, going back to DA2. It's also the decimation of an entire trilogy which represents an investment of cash and time greater than a single movie ticket.

To be honest your also misunderstanding the sheer suck of this ending, see "didn't like it" is a fairly mild response. What's more your dealing with a movie a lot of people did apparently like, or at least didn't hate. Chances are if you made a big enough scene you would have gotten your ticket fee refunded, and that definatly would have happened if enough people hated th emovie that they all went looking for a refund.... which has happened on numerous occasions.

Being able to referance something like this might seem relevent, but it's really not, as you apparently have never been that pissed off, nor have you been involved in anything that has pissed people off to that extent. If things had been worse and the entire theater decided to go to the manager to demand their money back, you probably would have been right there with them, and that's basically what this is.

As I've said before, changing the ending is a valid solution given the exact problems, but so would refunding people their money and buying back the Mass Effect merchandise, even if just that one game $60 a pop times a million or so people would really hurt EA. Overall demanding a new ending is fairly reasonable as at most that's going to cost EA a few million, a lot less than the equivilent of a Hollywood refund at this point.

insanity00:
[

I got the DLC conspiracy not from you, but from many other discussions around the web. This issue has been blended in with the day-one DLC such that the tin hat folks are scared Bioware is out to screw them anyway they can.

I wonder how big the fan backlash really is. I have heard numbers like 50,000 thrown around, and even presuming that is only 10% of the total, then less than 15% of initial adopters are unhappy with the ending. I'm sure BW has a better idea of the actual numbers, I am just speculating and curious.

Overall as a consumer of many types of media, and someone fully aware how few gamers actually "beat" most games, especially longer games like ME3, it is amazing, and kinda awesome that the ending has garnered such a strong response. It shows how important this story has been for people, an aspect not often celebrated in games. I also REALLY enjoy playing the game from story to game play I love it. And having gone back to play ME1 last summer, ME2 and 3 for my money, have far superior controls, engagement, and story than the first installment.

In my opinion, Bioware has to look at the reasons for their story and game development and move ahead based on those. If they can honestly say they this was their vision, this was what they wanted the game to be, more power to them. If however they changed development, planning, or story purely for economic or business reasons, they need to readdress their approach to game development. Either way, only they can know the answer, and only we can tell them if we approve...by voting with our dollars.

Well, Bioware or more specifically their publisher EA is out to screw people any way it can. The Day 1 DLC inspired a lot of anger which contributed to this, but I don't think there is any direct connection. I tend to lump all that in by pointing out that this isn't just about the ending even if that's the rallying point, but about a lot of things that have all come to a head due to that. They have gotten ridiculously greedy, cut corners, released shoddy products like DA2, and then there was this ending which didn't match the spirit of a series people were heavily invested in.... There is no direct connection with the DLC, but it did contribute to the anger as did many things. That's how I see it.

It's hightly doubtful that this was their original vision, or anything close to it, given that the ending doesn't match the spirit of the game up until this point.

When it comes to the sheer numbers, some of the things I've been reading have talked about polls on the subject giving an 86% rate of dis-satisfaction. There might only be 50,000 or so people actively involved in going after Bioware and expressing themselves strongly over it, but like everything the vocal part is usually the smallest part of the position that spawns them. 50,000 vocal protestors is huge for something like this.

As far as "Mass Effect" goes and the quality of the games goes, I disagree with you there, but that has nothing to do with this discussion really. I think the first game was the best and was the most RPG-like. I think 2 and 3 became cinematic shooters and I'm not a big fan of the genere. 3 did tighten up the controls and AI as far as shooters go, and made it better for that kind of game, but I still did not care for that design choice. I was playing it mostly due to liking the universe and storyline up until that point.

To be honest there was still a lot of bad blood over changing ME into a shooter as opposed to keeping it an RPG that looked like a shooter, and that doubtlessly contributed to this for some people. Indeed it was an issue that came up with "Dragon Age 2" as they turned it from an RPG into a glorified brawler, complete with plate wearing enemies jumping off buildings like ninjas. With the story being the selling point keeping a lot of people coming back despite this, ruining that probably contributed to the rage. The RPG to shooter transition would not have fueled this alone as there are simply put more shooter fans than RPG fans out there at this time.

Speaking for myself, I thought the ending was bad, but not as bad as some people seem to think and I've said that before. I'd prefer a better ending and am willing to defend that point, but truthfully I probably wouldn't have jumped into the whole thing supporting the "movement" to have it changed if there wasn't a goodly amount of intertia, with so many issues also coming to a head. I really believe this could be a changing point for the industry that will leave things better than they were, as having reached the limit to how far people can be pushed they probably will backpedal a bit and stop pushing to find that limit.

As far as people voting with their money, I think that is already happening. One of the interesting things about this is that rather than just vocalized rage, people are spending money to go after EA/Bioware one way or another. What's more without changing the ending I do not think the DLC they have planned will go over very well, similar to what happened with DA2 where the DLC apparently did badly enough where the last installment of it that they had planned was cancelled.

people aren't mad about it being sad, they're mad about how it was advertised as "every choice you make will affect the galaxy and the ending", but what we got was "lol, nevermind"

Akichi Daikashima:
Harry Potter: Good Ending

so all that magicky nonsense and sickly sweet epilogue was good?

This may have been said before, but when Harry Potter ended.. it had an actual fucking ending. The problems got resolved, and those who survived had a happy-gods-damned-ending, even if it skipped about 12-14 years or so for the epilogue. I honestly ENJOYED that, because I'm not sure I want to read about Harry and Ginny having marital problems, or how Ron would go and cheat on Hermoine.

Why? Cause that's the kinda shit you get when you're forced to drum up ideas for sequels. The cast has fulfilled their goals and their destiny, and they deserve to be happy and go about the rest of their lives. Don't heap extra trouble onto them just cause the fans want "more". They can go play the games, write their own damn stories (which they'll do anyways), or re-watch/re-read the original material.

As for games like Mass Effect 3.. it's really quite a different matter altogether. There's nothing wrong with wanting to have your own artistic integrity and make it how you want it... but you also have to factor in everything that's led up to this point, what the people supporting you have come to expect, and keeping some pretty hefty promises that sometimes cause you to do something you might not want to.

As an example, I think a LOT (we're talking easily hundreds of thousands) of people would have loved to see a PROPER ending to Final Fantasy 7. Hell, it's one of the reasons they want it remade (personally, I hated it and wish they'd all just shut up about FF sequels). No matter how much they bitched, whined, and campaigned, it hasn't happened and it likely never will. Besides, we've got so many prequels and sequels to it that we ALREADY KNOW what ends up happening, what happened before, and what happened DURING the game to the point that the original game no longer is canon anyways.

I'd personally have preferred Kingdom Hearts 2 to NOT have contained any of this bullshit about Keyblade Wars or "undisclosed pasts" or any of that crap that started creeping into the dialogue during the last portion of the game. Without that and the "hidden ending" the story would have come to an effective close, we wouldn't have needed all those horrible prequels which only further contort and contrive the established facts from earlier games.. we'll like never see a proper sequel where Sora, Riku, and Kairi go on an honest-to-gods fucking adventure without the FF baggage. But of course, one of the developers was the same person who cowrote FF7, and we all know how "perfectly" that was written. Your mileage may vary.

What I'm saying is that sometimes you have to actually NOT do what you would normally want to, and finish the fucking product to hopefully get out of "sequel-itis" (or prequel-itis, as the case may be). Sometimes the story has to end, and when you provide so many options to the player over the course of a game.. you better damn well have several endings lined up, or else it should've just been a straight, linear, follow-the-dots game to begin with.

shadow_Fox81:

Akichi Daikashima:
Harry Potter: Good Ending

so all that magicky nonsense and sickly sweet epilogue was good?

Yes. If you didn't like it, don't read it and/or write your own damned novel so you can have the events in it turn out how you like. Chances are if it'd ended differently everyone who likes the ending it has would be the ones in your shoes bitching that it was a stupid way to end the series.

shadow_Fox81:

Akichi Daikashima:
Harry Potter: Good Ending

so all that magicky nonsense and sickly sweet epilogue was good?

Yes, because it was coherent, what the audience expected, had a very small ammount of plot holes, and It HAD SOME F***ING CLOSURE. Also, in comparison to ME3's ending, it kicks ass.

Therumancer:

deadish:
OMG this is still being debated?

Bioware dropped the ball and released a flawed product that you bought. Big deal. Shitty products get released all the time. Get over it. I watched "I am Legend" and I didn't like it but you don't see me filing a FTC compliant over it do you?

Jesus christ, talk about being an Otaku (obsessive fan).

Well this is more than just a single flawed product at this point, going back to DA2. It's also the decimation of an entire trilogy which represents an investment of cash and time greater than a single movie ticket.

To be honest your also misunderstanding the sheer suck of this ending, see "didn't like it" is a fairly mild response. What's more your dealing with a movie a lot of people did apparently like, or at least didn't hate. Chances are if you made a big enough scene you would have gotten your ticket fee refunded, and that definatly would have happened if enough people hated th emovie that they all went looking for a refund.... which has happened on numerous occasions.

Being able to referance something like this might seem relevent, but it's really not, as you apparently have never been that pissed off, nor have you been involved in anything that has pissed people off to that extent. If things had been worse and the entire theater decided to go to the manager to demand their money back, you probably would have been right there with them, and that's basically what this is.

As I've said before, changing the ending is a valid solution given the exact problems, but so would refunding people their money and buying back the Mass Effect merchandise, even if just that one game $60 a pop times a million or so people would really hurt EA. Overall demanding a new ending is fairly reasonable as at most that's going to cost EA a few million, a lot less than the equivilent of a Hollywood refund at this point.

Oh, I have been pissed off at endings to TV series and what have you not before. I go onto the internet, whine a bit about it and talk it out with others, but completely flip out like the ME fanboys I did not - and I definitely didn't file an FTC compliant LOL.

Yes, they are releasing flawed products and ruining trilogies, but it's THEIR PRODUCT and THEIR TRILOGIES - not to mention what is considered flawed / ruining is completely subjective. When you purchase a game, all you are purchasing is a license to play it, nothing more.

To quote someone from Twitter,

So if the government comes knocking, games are art. But when we hate the ending, they're products and the customer is always right. Got it.

You either stand up universally for artistic freedom or you are not standing up for it all it. Because by the same token, "moral guardians" would be allowed to censor / force changes to any video game or movie because "they didn't like it". Free speech isn't really free when it comes with "terms and conditions".

Again, someone missing the millions of obvious points as to why people hate the ending.

deadish:

Oh, I have been pissed off at endings to TV series and what have you not before. I go onto the internet, whine a bit about it and talk it out with others, but completely flip out like the ME fanboys I did not - and I definitely didn't file an FTC compliant LOL.

Yes, they are releasing flawed products and ruining trilogies, but it's THEIR PRODUCT and THEIR TRILOGIES - not to mention what is considered flawed / ruining is completely subjective. When you purchase a game, all you are purchasing is a license to play it, nothing more.

To quote someone from Twitter,

So if the government comes knocking, games are art. But when we hate the ending, they're products and the customer is always right. Got it.

You either stand up universally for artistic freedom or you are not standing up for it all it. Because by the same token, "moral guardians" would be allowed to censor / force changes to any video game or movie because "they didn't like it". Free speech isn't really free when it comes with "terms and conditions".

The thing is that the TV series didn't cost you anything to watch, other than time and advertising bombardment.

Also don't misunderstand the FCC complaint isn't so much "the ending sucks" as much as it is accusations of fraud and false advertising involving a product that was charged for. Bioware came out and made a number of promises involving how the series would be concluded and people purchused the product with the understanding that the story would be tied up and all the answers given. Bioware then was caught (via their own planned $3 app) intentionally planning to not fulfill those promises. The FCC complaint is a bit differant than what many people think it's about as I understand things. No lawyer would take a case "because I just think the ending sucks and want them to change it".

As I've said a few times, this is complicated, even if Bioware DOES take action and change the ending away from this monster of mindless profiteering, that proabbly won't get rid of the suit because in the end there is still the entire question of whether they engaged in fraud or not. It's like a thief getting caught and returning your property... it doesn't change the fact that he broke into your house. Time will tell if Bioware will inspire enough good will to get the charges dropped.

That said, I tend to maintain that games are a medium capable of producing art, I do not believe all games are art however. What's more it's possible for an artist to sell out BEFORE criticisms, not just in response to them. In this case the issue isn't so much one about Bioware sacrificing it's artistic integrity, but demands that they regain it and do a proper and consistant ending, as opposed to one entirely motivated by financial gain.

Honestly, people who talk about how dumb this is probably don't bother to consider that not only was it a crappy "do nothing" ending intended for franchise potential, it was ALSO an attempt to sell people the ending of the game by forcing them to pay more money. To even see all the "do nothing" options you needed to acheive more "asset" points than are in the game, the only way to get those is to raise your readiness which is done through multiplayer which has been monetized with "pay to win" components. What's more including more assets to make seeing all the versions of that same crappy ending is a way of pimping DLC by making the ending dependant in part on the "extras", not to mention plans for tie-in games like some kind of "Mass Effect: Infiltrator" app.

When you use the "games are art" defense of Bioware, understood they said back with ME1 they had this all planned out, yet they admitted in interviews (from the $3 endign app) they were making an ending towards the end of the ME3 release. What's more the entire ending is designed to take advantage of avenutes of cash gouging that weren't really availible or seen to be potentially viable when ME1 was conceived.

Understand people are pissed because Bioware is not only producing that ending, but sitting there and saying "hey, want to see another version of this crappy ending? All you need to do is put dozens of hours into multiplayher... or pay us some money to cut down on that tiem... multiplayer not your thing? Well buy some DLC to see more of the ending you already paid for... or hey... buy our tie in app game that raises your readiness by playing that when we finish it...".

Seriously, how anyone can NOT be at least mildly POed with EA/Bioware is beyond me.

For all you people saying they wanted closure , guess what ! Bioware did not want to give closure they never did, mass effect made millions of dollars they are obviously going to add another game with the series , whether that be featuring shepard or not is yet to be seen.

dcdude171:
For all you people saying they wanted closure , guess what ! Bioware did not want to give closure they never did, mass effect made millions of dollars they are obviously going to add another game with the series , whether that be featuring shepard or not is yet to be seen.

While that's true, they've also maintained all along that ME3 would be the end of Shepard's story.

Plus even if they were going to continue making Shepard games afterwards, they still need to provide closure at the end of this game. Which they don't.

Akichi Daikashima:

shadow_Fox81:

Akichi Daikashima:
Harry Potter: Good Ending

so all that magicky nonsense and sickly sweet epilogue was good?

Yes, because it was coherent, what the audience expected, had a very small ammount of plot holes, and It HAD SOME F***ING CLOSURE. Also, in comparison to ME3's ending, it kicks ass.

it was hardly coherent but it did opperate coherently in harry potters overarcing logic "because magic did it".And of course harry and ginny are happily married and all that other lovely stuff.etc

but its hardly a good ending and thats not closure thats what we want harry to win and be happy. But in a childrens novel its alright to give people what they want.

mass effects ending if handled similarly would have rung hollow and contrived, because it is after all directed at adults .

mass effects ending (for me there is only one) felt good because it was how I knew it would end, badly.

Considering people sunk 100+ hours into all three games combined, making those all-important choices and promised we would get a conclusion that reflected those decisions; I'm not surprised people got pissed off when they discovered that explosive climax that had been building up since ME1 wasn't a huge explosion but more like a puff of steam...

And ME3 was doing great! 95% of the game was bloody amazing, then we got to the conclusion and I'm still wondering what the hell caused them to drop the ball like that? We were told that we would get a conclusion reflective of what we did in the game, that would provide closure for the trilogy and answer all our questions. Instead we got that... thing, which made no bloody sense and was just the same thing three times. Something which pretty much might have been a huge trollface stamped in the sky saying "lol ur choices wuz irrelevant!"

For all those defending Bioware, perhaps you forget about the flak Bethesda got for the Fallout 3 ending? I don't recall many people rushing to defend them there or complain about "artistic integrity" then? What did Bethesda do, they listened to the fans and changed the damn ending for everyone. They charged for it but they still deserve credit for at least showing some humility and level-headedness and willingness to listen to people. Bioware by comparison don't care anymore, they sold out when EA bought them.

Therumancer:
Also don't misunderstand the FCC complaint isn't so much "the ending sucks" as much as it is accusations of fraud and false advertising involving a product that was charged for. Bioware came out and made a number of promises involving how the series would be concluded and people purchused the product with the understanding that the story would be tied up and all the answers given. Bioware then was caught (via their own planned $3 app) intentionally planning to not fulfill those promises. The FCC complaint is a bit differant than what many people think it's about as I understand things. No lawyer would take a case "because I just think the ending sucks and want them to change it".

Well, good luck proving that in court.

You better start collecting all the evidence where Bioware "promised" you what you think they promised you.

Personally, for curiosity's sake [1], I would like to see some of that evidence.

[1] I have no stake in this, I have never bought any of their games nor do I own any EA shares.

deadish:

Therumancer:
Also don't misunderstand the FCC complaint isn't so much "the ending sucks" as much as it is accusations of fraud and false advertising involving a product that was charged for. Bioware came out and made a number of promises involving how the series would be concluded and people purchused the product with the understanding that the story would be tied up and all the answers given. Bioware then was caught (via their own planned $3 app) intentionally planning to not fulfill those promises. The FCC complaint is a bit differant than what many people think it's about as I understand things. No lawyer would take a case "because I just think the ending sucks and want them to change it".

Well, good luck proving that in court.

You better start collecting all the evidence where Bioware "promised" you what you think they promised you.

Personally, for curiosity's sake [1], I would like to see some of that evidence.

[1] I have no stake in this, I have never bought any of their games nor do I own any EA shares.

Hilarious since I'm not the one bringing the suit. It's already been lodged, and it's made the gaming media news, perhaps you should contact the guys actually bringing the case?

That said a lot of the evidence is a matter of public record, and even covered in various escapist threads. You might not care for it, but as we're discussing something that has already happened, it's kind of a moot point.

Therumancer:

deadish:

Therumancer:
Also don't misunderstand the FCC complaint isn't so much "the ending sucks" as much as it is accusations of fraud and false advertising involving a product that was charged for. Bioware came out and made a number of promises involving how the series would be concluded and people purchused the product with the understanding that the story would be tied up and all the answers given. Bioware then was caught (via their own planned $3 app) intentionally planning to not fulfill those promises. The FCC complaint is a bit differant than what many people think it's about as I understand things. No lawyer would take a case "because I just think the ending sucks and want them to change it".

Well, good luck proving that in court.

You better start collecting all the evidence where Bioware "promised" you what you think they promised you.

Personally, for curiosity's sake [1], I would like to see some of that evidence.

[1] I have no stake in this, I have never bought any of their games nor do I own any EA shares.

Hilarious since I'm not the one bringing the suit. It's already been lodged, and it's made the gaming media news, perhaps you should contact the guys actually bringing the case?

That said a lot of the evidence is a matter of public record, and even covered in various escapist threads. You might not care for it, but as we're discussing something that has already happened, it's kind of a moot point.

Actually I only asked because I figured you would be in the know. /shrug

deadish:

Therumancer:

deadish:

Well, good luck proving that in court.

You better start collecting all the evidence where Bioware "promised" you what you think they promised you.

Personally, for curiosity's sake [1], I would like to see some of that evidence.

[1] I have no stake in this, I have never bought any of their games nor do I own any EA shares.

Hilarious since I'm not the one bringing the suit. It's already been lodged, and it's made the gaming media news, perhaps you should contact the guys actually bringing the case?

That said a lot of the evidence is a matter of public record, and even covered in various escapist threads. You might not care for it, but as we're discussing something that has already happened, it's kind of a moot point.

Actually I only asked because I figured you would be in the know. /shrug

Sorry I thought you were trying to be rude and dismissive, I get that a lot and try and ignore it.

As I undertsnad things a lot of the "evidence" for the actual FTC complaint and/or civil suit comes down to promises made by Bioware's design team prior to the release of Mass Effect 3. The "big list of promises" going back to a thread that showed up in the Bioware social forum. This differing from advertising hype because the statements were directly linked to people high up in Bioware who should know, making solid statements in interviews. The presumption being that the things they were speaking about were already defined in the game. If a lead developer comes out and says "the ending for this game is not going to be a simple choose A B or C ending" that's a bit differant than say a glossy full color add that says "the ending will blow you away..." rather generically. These promises being compared to OTHER interviews by developers and writers that were released as part of an app that was talking about the ending and the development process, something being sold seperatly for the game that fills a similar role to the "extra featues" on the DVD where members of the writing team talk about having not completed the ending until pretty late in the process, holding off recording the voice for "The Illusive Man" until pretty much the end of the process since they did not know what they were going to do for sure, and a bunch of other things. Not to mention the revelation that part of the ending was literally build based on fan mail sent in by a 7 year old from Germany. Understand this is not supposition, this is from interviews and such made by Bioware, with the validity of this information being supported by Chris Priestly.

Contrary to some reports, especially by the gaming media, the suits/FTC complaint that we've been hearing about are NOT attempts to get the ending changed. The goverment doesn't have the abillity to do that anyway. Rather it's all about fraud and false advertising. The basic point is that people in the development team speaking in interviews clearly said that their product was a certain way, and it was not, and then people in that same design team have shown in other interviews that they knew that, and actually in some cases deliberatly went against what was promised. An example being that some developers said that the ending was going to answer all the questions about Mass Effect, but at the last minute the guys doing the ending decided to ignore that, even if they were toying with the idea, and to not provide that information, or really any oppertunity to ask questions or investigate at all during the ending. The stated intent being to generate contreversy and hype, presumably to turn what should be the end of a trilogy into a giant cliffhanger intended to promote the next game.

It's unknown whether the guys bringing these suits/complaints will drop them if the ending is changed. It might be a leverating tactic, it might not. Not a whole lot has been said other than these things exist.

The actual case does seem to be fairly solid when you look at it from the perspective of fraud and false advertising, as opposed to a matter of whether someone liked the ending or not, because you do have Bioware employees making clear promises and statements about the product, and then other statements saying that they deliberatly chose not to provide what was promised without telling anyone before the product was released. In a less dubious case, let's say someone makes a vaccum that is advertised as a wet/dry vac over the internet, but the guys manufacturing it decide to remove the wet/liquid sucking features to save money at the last minute regardless of the promises, but don't change the advertising. They can be nailed to the wall if someone buys that product through the mail based on that ad that says it's a wet/dry vac and then finds it's doesn't fit the specs the company said it does and decides to make a complaint.

Whether it's stupid or not isn't really relevent, that's the basic nature of the case as I understand it. The whole bit about the $3 app and the information in it that has served to inspire a lot of the rage, and probably these suits besides, has (or had) a thread here on The Escapist, and really that's the biggest piece of information. For the initial claims you'd have to check other Bioware interviews, or see if there are any threads compiling them (the last time I checked was a week or so ago, and there was at least one on Bioware social).

Therumancer:
-snip-

Ya, some other guy gave me the link to the "A B or C ending" post that you highlighted.

But only outcome I can see from all this "woo ha" is that developers from this point onwards will "clam up". We can forget about the candid style of interviews we have now, where they frankly speak whats on their mind with the implicit assumption that gamers will understand if somethings don't make the cut or things don't turn out the way they claim it would. [1]

Developers will probably have to act like they are "under arrest" - "You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say, can and will be used against you" - when giving interviews from now on. I won't be surprised if the larger publishers demand that all interviews have to be vetted by their legal department and anything "dangerous" purged from said interview before publication, just to make sure they don't run into legal trouble.

[1] Simply because some times (if not frequently) things don't go as planned - "No campaign plan survives first contact with the enemy.". If you read developer post-mortems (written for other developers; to share experience) you will know creating a shippable product is bloody hard. There are tons of projects that don't make it to the finish line at all, that you don't hear about.

Proverbial Jon:

Fawxy:
The majority of people aren't mad about the "sad" or "downer" nature of the endings, god damnit. People are mad that they spent 100+ hours on a series, only for every single choice they made to be thrown out the window and not make a single damn difference in the end.

This, of course, is after we were told that our choices actually would matter.

Exactly.

This is just the point that everyone on the other side of the argument is missing. We were not angry because the story didn't end the way we wanted it to, we're angry because everything we did amounted to shit. Frankly I see this as more of a gameplay/structure issue than a problem with the script itself.

We want 2 things:

1) Closure. This is NOT the same as a happy ending. Closure simply means we want a fair ending which ties up the loose ends and doesn't create more plot holes. Even when terrible events happen you can still find closure afterwards.

2) Choice. We wanted an ending based on OUR decisions, you know, the ones we spent three whole games making. Choices that were given more consideration and investment than some of our own real-life, everyday choices! Instead we all got the same ending. Everyone got the same ending. Paragon Shepards and Renegade Shepards got the same ending. I got the same ending as you and you and you.

The same ending.

I get the choice part, but not the closure part. Yes, the ending was abrupt, but I think for the most part all the questions were answered.

Saucycarpdog:
I get the choice part, but not the closure part. Yes, the ending was abrupt, but I think for the most part all the questions were answered.

Woah... wait, what?

Ok, here are a few questions that the ending actually created shortly before leaving them hanging, totally unanswered:

Whatever ending you picked the mass relays exploded. Previously, when a relay exploded, it wiped out an entire system, did the same happen this time... to the whole galaxy? What about the races which came to the Sol system in defence of Earth? How can they get back to their home planets without the relays? Even the Normandy, the most advanced warship in the Mass Effect universe, cannot reach other systems without the relays. Turians and Quarians will starve on Earth if nothing else because they cannot eat human food. What about Joker? How did he manage to retreat from Earth fast enough to outrun the magical space explosion and take a relay to another system? If I took Garrus with me to the final battle and we all got blasted by the Reaper beam before reaching the Citadel... then how is he able to step off the Normandy onto that jungle planet at the end? What? Just... argh!

These are just a few of the many, glaring plot inconsistencies that the so-called "ending" has produced.

Proverbial Jon:

Saucycarpdog:
I get the choice part, but not the closure part. Yes, the ending was abrupt, but I think for the most part all the questions were answered.

Woah... wait, what?

Ok, here are a few questions that the ending actually created shortly before leaving them hanging, totally unanswered:

Whatever ending you picked the mass relays exploded. Previously, when a relay exploded, it wiped out an entire system, did the same happen this time... to the whole galaxy? What about the races which came to the Sol system in defence of Earth? How can they get back to their home planets without the relays? Even the Normandy, the most advanced warship in the Mass Effect universe, cannot reach other systems without the relays. Turians and Quarians will starve on Earth if nothing else because they cannot eat human food. What about Joker? How did he manage to retreat from Earth fast enough to outrun the magical space explosion and take a relay to another system? If I took Garrus with me to the final battle and we all got blasted by the Reaper beam before reaching the Citadel... then how is he able to step off the Normandy onto that jungle planet at the end? What? Just... argh!

These are just a few of the many, glaring plot inconsistencies that the so-called "ending" has produced.

oh yeah.........those.

Now I realize how stupid my post is.

Saucycarpdog:
oh yeah.........those.

Now I realize how stupid my post is.

Haha, don't worry about it! I might have been a bit quick to jump at you with those anyway, this whole Mass Effect ending thing is getting silly now.

I will agree that the majority of the game actually did do a good job of tying up loose ends and lingering plots. Pretty much every character we ever did anything for appeared in some capacity and had either sorted their lives out or not. It's just a shame that Bioware so expertly wrapped everything up only to send out a half baked cutscene that posed more questions than it answered. Shame.

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