Was in the ending itself that was bad?
Yes, it gave me cancer.
67.6% (75)
67.6% (75)
I suppose it was how you got the ending.
16.2% (18)
16.2% (18)
I liked it despite the haters.
16.2% (18)
16.2% (18)
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Poll: Was the Mass effect 3 ending that bad?

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Casual Shinji:
I'd argue the Earth should never have functioned as the centre of the whole conflict to begin with. This makes it fall into the typical scenario with these space tales that humans are "the special", and it clashes tonally knowing the Reapers are vaporizing the Earth while you're off goofing around on the Citidal. But then the same could be said about the other planets getting fried, which calls into question having the backdrop of ME3 be the Reaper war.

Earth being so important was especially irritating when playing as a Shepard with a Colonist background.

Can't shut up about Earth but doesn't give a damn about their own homeworld of Mindoir expect a throwaway line in an optional DLC.

I'd say I'm getting some 2012 nostalgia, but 2012 was one of the worst years of my life so I'd rather not think of it.

And yeah, the ending was that bad.

Pretty much just gonna leave it at that because, there's nothing I can really say about it that hasn't already been said 37 million times.

Seth Carter:

Meiam:
On the whole "95% of the game is great aside from the ending" did they already forget Kai Leng? That character alone is enough to destroy a game, I didn't like the ending but I couldn't muster any real anger because by that point I just didn't give a shit anymore, Kai Leng killed all the shit I had to give.

His first boss fight is textbook definition of a bad boss fight.

I'd second reading Shamus Young mass effect retrospective (can't link it cause his website is down atm) for a lengthy analysis of what went wrong. He's more negative about ME2 than I'd be (although ME2 need to be played on insanity to be appreciated), but overall I mostly agree with him and he's a far better writer than me.

That was the cyborg ninja dude who felt like a fanfic insert character, wasn't he? Yeah, kind of atrocious.

Though Bioware's always had a thing for silly fanfic type characters, which got weird when they started doing it in their own IPs somehow (The ME2 crew were all these weird abnormal concepts, with the DLC pair being the straight plays other then Generic McSoldierGuy) and not in D&D games.

Yeah, Kai Leng is awful but we also got to stab him in the heart so I'm cool with it. And I'll hear nothing bad said about Zaeed Massani; Robin Sachs took a generic role and made it fun to the point where I wish he'd been a full squadmate and not DLC.

It wouldn't have been too bad completely out of context, but it ran so directly counter to the entire series, its worldbuilding, its choices, etc. that it felt terrible.

Gordon_4:

Yeah, Kai Leng is awful but we also got to stab him in the heart so I?m cool with it. And I?ll hear nothing bad said about Zaeed Massani; Robin Sachs took a generic role and made it fun to the point where I wish he?d been a full squadmate and not DLC.

Nah, he felt fairly organic. Genetically engineered perfect human, suddenly individual minded Geth-bro, Asari super-monk, another genetically engineered perfect Krogan, random biotic with unexplained superpowers, etc would be the ones I was more referencing.

Its like they ran out of writing ideas for actual characters with personalities, and just started spitballing a series of outlandish gimmicks instead. One character with the " empowered outsider becomes savior of society that shuns them" kind of works (and Legion was probably the best one to go with, in the general sense, besides not following that trope to a T). but it was half the cast.

Samtemdo8:
I am just extremely worried that Game of Thrones will suffer the same fate as Mass Effect 3.

There's no ending they could give it that would satisfy everyone. Given that there are very few main characters left *and* we know GRRM has said the ending will be bittersweet *and* that he likes killing off his characters, the chances are that a lot of them won't be standing at the end. The thing is, at this point it's built up to a good vs evil showdown since all the political intrigue and games of thrones died (literally and symbolically) with Baelish.

It will end better than ME3 did, ME3 was so tone deaf it took mods and fan rewrites to fix. It probably won't be a happy ending and it may not be one you like, but it will end with A Dream of Spring.

mrdude2010:
It wouldn't have been too bad completely out of context, but it ran so directly counter to the entire series, its worldbuilding, its choices, etc. that it felt terrible.

Unfortunately, it was exactly like the other games. All that choices was pointless from the start

It was a bad, terribly written, hastily-slapped-together ending, but given how people are still pissed off about it 6 years down the track, I'm tempted to say it's the greatest ending of all time, just to raise some blood pressures.

I mean, holy fuck guys, it's just a shitty ending, Bioware didn't murder your parents, calm the fuck down already.

Wrex Brogan:
Bioware didn't murder your parents

Far as you know. :P

Wrex Brogan:
It was a bad, terribly written, hastily-slapped-together ending, but given how people are still pissed off about it 6 years down the track, I'm tempted to say it's the greatest ending of all time, just to raise some blood pressures.

I mean, holy fuck guys, it's just a shitty ending, Bioware didn't murder your parents, calm the fuck down already.

Poll with its 'unbiased answers' set the tone but honestly, people voicing their negative opinion about the ending were rather calm and collected. Does it bother you it didn't get wishy-washy but remains stark after 6 years? If yes, hold onto your bottom because once Anthem flops and Bioware goes the way of the dodo it's then, when festival of blame and shame the fans begins. Save your ammo.

As per Jason Schreier's report, Bioware's expected lifespan = single year. EA already sharpened the axe and dug the hole right next to Visceral's and other prominent studios carcases' graves..

Jamcie Kerbizz:
Poll with its 'unbiased answers' set the tone but honestly, people voicing their negative opinion about the ending were rather calm and collected. Does it bother you it didn't get wishy-washy but remains stark after 6 years? If yes, hold onto your bottom because once Anthem flops and Bioware goes the way of the dodo it's then, when festival of blame and shame the fans begins. Save your ammo.

As per Jason Schreier's report, Bioware's expected lifespan = single year. EA already sharpened the axe and dug the hole right next to Visceral's and other prominent studios carcases' graves..

To be fair, at this point Bioware is not the studio that once gave us Baldur's Gate, KotOR, Jade Empire, Dragon Age: Origins or Mass Effect. The Bioware we are seeing now is a completely different studio in terms of management, employees and creative freedom with only the name and logo as pale reminders of what used to be. Shamus Young speculated that 'something' happened at Bioware after 2009, since that's when it becomes obvious that their games are following a different design structure, and whatever it was was also the beginning of the end for Bioware. The most likely thing is that EA began asserting more control, which then slowly bled Bioware of its' unique strengths until we got the company of today, which focuses mostly on curating a mediocre MMO and slowing down its' releases of new games (DA:I and ME:A being the only two games to come out of the three Bioware studios since 2012). No matter what happens to Anthem, it is likely that Bioware is effectively over as a development studio for the foreseeable future, as most of its' resources will be going into curating ToR and Anthem even if Bioware survives.

Gethsemani:

Jamcie Kerbizz:
Poll with its 'unbiased answers' set the tone but honestly, people voicing their negative opinion about the ending were rather calm and collected. Does it bother you it didn't get wishy-washy but remains stark after 6 years? If yes, hold onto your bottom because once Anthem flops and Bioware goes the way of the dodo it's then, when festival of blame and shame the fans begins. Save your ammo.

As per Jason Schreier's report, Bioware's expected lifespan = single year. EA already sharpened the axe and dug the hole right next to Visceral's and other prominent studios carcases' graves..

To be fair, at this point Bioware is not the studio that once gave us Baldur's Gate, KotOR, Jade Empire, Dragon Age: Origins or Mass Effect. The Bioware we are seeing now is a completely different studio in terms of management, employees and creative freedom with only the name and logo as pale reminders of what used to be. Shamus Young speculated that 'something' happened at Bioware after 2009, since that's when it becomes obvious that their games are following a different design structure, and whatever it was was also the beginning of the end for Bioware. The most likely thing is that EA began asserting more control, which then slowly bled Bioware of its' unique strengths until we got the company of today, which focuses mostly on curating a mediocre MMO and slowing down its' releases of new games (DA:I and ME:A being the only two games to come out of the three Bioware studios since 2012). No matter what happens to Anthem, it is likely that Bioware is effectively over as a development studio for the foreseeable future, as most of its' resources will be going into curating ToR and Anthem even if Bioware survives.

Yes. My guess would be taking controls away from Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk or just switching studio's cuture with corporate culture. Mind you individual developers and programmers may even prefer the latter but truth is, better for product and customers is have people with proven artistic vision hold the controls and push the 'tools' to their limits at the expense of efficiency and convenience (something ie. Kojima or leads at CDP Red were accused of).

Gethsemani:

Jamcie Kerbizz:
Poll with its 'unbiased answers' set the tone but honestly, people voicing their negative opinion about the ending were rather calm and collected. Does it bother you it didn't get wishy-washy but remains stark after 6 years? If yes, hold onto your bottom because once Anthem flops and Bioware goes the way of the dodo it's then, when festival of blame and shame the fans begins. Save your ammo.

As per Jason Schreier's report, Bioware's expected lifespan = single year. EA already sharpened the axe and dug the hole right next to Visceral's and other prominent studios carcases' graves..

To be fair, at this point Bioware is not the studio that once gave us Baldur's Gate, KotOR, Jade Empire, Dragon Age: Origins or Mass Effect. The Bioware we are seeing now is a completely different studio in terms of management, employees and creative freedom with only the name and logo as pale reminders of what used to be. Shamus Young speculated that 'something' happened at Bioware after 2009, since that's when it becomes obvious that their games are following a different design structure, and whatever it was was also the beginning of the end for Bioware. The most likely thing is that EA began asserting more control, which then slowly bled Bioware of its' unique strengths until we got the company of today, which focuses mostly on curating a mediocre MMO and slowing down its' releases of new games (DA:I and ME:A being the only two games to come out of the three Bioware studios since 2012). No matter what happens to Anthem, it is likely that Bioware is effectively over as a development studio for the foreseeable future, as most of its' resources will be going into curating ToR and Anthem even if Bioware survives.

Jason Schreier article

Seems to indicate that everything is riding on Anthem. And it looks like they are holding back resources from DA4 development until after Anthem releases. And they are also planning on the making the new DA4 service-oriented, like Anthem. If Anthem flops - and I predict that it will, because most of creative talent that once made Bioware great seems to be gone - I look for DA4 to get its plug pulled. And according to that article, there is already discussion of pulling the plug on SWTOR support. The Mass Effect franchise has already been covered with dirt. What's left? Nothing. Put a bullet in the lame horse's head. RIP Bioware. Thanks, EA.

Bittersweet endings can work. The problem is that Bioware got the bitter but forgot the sweet with the shipped endings.

I think everyone knew that the chances were high that Shepard was going to die. I admit I saw that coming but did I expect him, or her, to go out meekly accepting the word of the apparent series villain...well no I didn't think that would happen.

Even than if I'd been shown that these radically different repercussions I'd been told about had occurred, I think I could have accepted it. Instead they told us stuff that was radically different and showed us stuff that wasn't.

That's why people so warmly embraced the Extended Cut. It didn't show us anything more than what had already been said, it just showed us that had already been promised.

As to Bioware. I wonder at times if they and EA are confused. People loved the hacking out of classic Bioware RPG elements in Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age II, yet now complain about the natural progression of those choices.

People loved it when EA started cutting out Bioware tropes. Well you reap(er) what you sow.

Weresquirrel:

2) The relative strength of ME2's ending - Terminator baby reaper boss fight aside, I think that it could be fairly universally agreed that the suicide mission was a triumph. It took the choices you made in the game leading up to it, and you had to make decisions. Loyalties were tested, as well as your own ability to analyse your squad and their abilities. If ME3 had something similar, but set on a much grander scale? That could have been amazing!

Some of the "tested loyalties" were a little silly. The one I always think of is a character failing a loyalty check and not surviving a shot to the ship before it crash lands on the Collector base.

-Dragmire-:

Weresquirrel:

2) The relative strength of ME2's ending - Terminator baby reaper boss fight aside, I think that it could be fairly universally agreed that the suicide mission was a triumph. It took the choices you made in the game leading up to it, and you had to make decisions. Loyalties were tested, as well as your own ability to analyse your squad and their abilities. If ME3 had something similar, but set on a much grander scale? That could have been amazing!

Some of the "tested loyalties" were a little silly. The one I always think of is a character failing a loyalty check and not surviving a shot to the ship before it crash lands on the Collector base.

The shot to the ship can be stopped by researching an armor upgrade after a loyalty mission (Tali's?). A loyalty check failure isn't the sole cause of that death.

Avnger:

-Dragmire-:

Weresquirrel:

2) The relative strength of ME2's ending - Terminator baby reaper boss fight aside, I think that it could be fairly universally agreed that the suicide mission was a triumph. It took the choices you made in the game leading up to it, and you had to make decisions. Loyalties were tested, as well as your own ability to analyse your squad and their abilities. If ME3 had something similar, but set on a much grander scale? That could have been amazing!

Some of the "tested loyalties" were a little silly. The one I always think of is a character failing a loyalty check and not surviving a shot to the ship before it crash lands on the Collector base.

The shot to the ship can be stopped by researching an armor upgrade after a loyalty mission (Tali's?). A loyalty check failure isn't the sole cause of that death.

Yeah, nobody dies on that mission if you spent time prior to it, doing all ove the available content. I found that part actually pretty neat. The final 'boss fight' not so much.

votemarvel:
(...)

As to Bioware. I wonder at times if they and EA are confused. People loved the hacking out of classic Bioware RPG elements in Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age II, yet now complain about the natural progression of those choices.

People loved it when EA started cutting out Bioware tropes. Well you reap(er) what you sow.

Different people, different opinions. Sure there were a vocal group in gaming media doing what you described but:
a) these people proved to be out of touch with player base of most games
b) these people are naught but a glorified marketing and PR departments franchises of publishers (vide latest Jimquisition and I couldn't agree with Jim more on this)
c) even if not a) or b) it were just lack of foresight. You give publishers one thing and praise for another. They take everything else for granted based on that feedback and prod devs to do grim things you should have seen coming. Just as an example. Idiotic 'but games are so expensive to make but still cost $60 excuse' that ie. Extra Credits promoted for years - absolving ever more predatory and unethical monetization practices. Moronic 'streamline games and gameplay for better accessibility excuse' that publisher used to design plotless, open ended, easy to add on games, dumbed down, insipid UIs that were as contrived and unintuitive on PCs as on consoles but worked on both just 'enough', lazy ports. Debilitating 'online-gaming is the future, all games need multiplayer' praise, which ended up in death one of the most social, bonding elements of gaming... couch co-op/split screen etc.

votemarvel:

As to Bioware. I wonder at times if they and EA are confused. People loved the hacking out of classic Bioware RPG elements in Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age II, yet now complain about the natural progression of those choices.

The thing was that ME2, at least, kept most of what made Bioware games appealing. You got neat buddies, strong moment to moment gameplay and a story that was well told (if entirely incoherent if examined). Honestly, I don't remember DA2 getting anything but scorn from Bioware fans on its' release, apart from maybe some praise for the NPCs.

ME2 is arguably a better game then ME1 mechanically, in just about every way. The gameplay is much smoother, much more involved and feels tighter. DA2 and DA:I is a harder comparison because DA:I was essentially a modernization of Infinity engine games, whereas DA2 cut a lot closer to ME2 in terms of gameplay, which is also one of the major reasons it got so much criticism.

Gethsemani:

ME2 is arguably a better game then ME1 mechanically, in just about every way. The gameplay is much smoother, much more involved and feels tighter. DA2 and DA:I is a harder comparison because DA:I was essentially a modernization of Infinity engine games, whereas DA2 cut a lot closer to ME2 in terms of gameplay, which is also one of the major reasons it got so much criticism.

Depends on what you found appealing in ME1. Biotic abilities for the most part are complete rubbish on the highest difficulties since they don't take effect unless they specifically say they target shields or armor or you've shot off armor or shields already, in which case it's just faster to shoot the bastards. ME1 you had dots and cc, actual choices between how you set up your weapons, and just so many options on how to combo abilities together to take down the big guys. ME3 had a fancy explosion with different colors, but that was about it.

Mechanically it was tighter, but I can't really agree with it being better. AOE was neutered and the Para/Gade system went from "you choose how you want to handle it and people might not like you as much" to the now-classic "are you the second coming or literal cannibal shia'le'hitler?".

I've always found that when most people talk about not liking the combat in the first Mass Effect, they mean they don't like they had to level up in order to become proficient in a weapon. They didn't like that the dice roll was hidden behind faux real time combat. Yet oddly people loved when Dragon Age II did the same thing.

Personally I've always found Mass Effect to be the most fluid of the combat systems, there's always an option available to every class. Yet ME2 and ME3 tossed that out in favour of traditional shooter mechanics, for well the shooting, and as someone who likes to play on Veteran or higher the biotic based classes basically had to sit behind the numerous chest high walls triggering biotic combos. They might look pretty but they get real old after a while.

No matter the class it really was just quicker and easier to shoot the enemies instead of bothering with powers.

Also curse the person who thought it was a good idea to make ammo mods into a power. I used Cryo Rounds exclusively all the way through the first game but in the second my Adept Shepard instantly knows what a thermal clip is but has no clue how to apply cryo rounds. I couldn't even get to use it as a squad ammo power because it was exclusive to certain classes of Shepard.

Shields were turned into wet tissue paper on everything but oddly the gun based classes. As an Adept my armour has shields and I can make a biotic barrier, shouldn't I have stronger protection from damage?

I can count the amount of times I've entered cover in the first game when I didn't want to on one hand. Compare that to the sequels where Shepard likes to cling to any exposed surface you even brush past. Yeah Shepard, perhaps clinging to that exposed wall in the middle of a firefight isn't a good idea.

That not to say I dislike everything about Mass Effect 2. I think it is the best looking of the franchise, it's the only one I've not bothered to install texture mods to because I honestly feel like it doesn't need them. The interrupt system is great and it can be hard to fight the urge to press them instantly (wish it hadn't be at the cost of Charm and Intimidate though).

Mass Effect 2 contains my favourite moment of the franchise, in Tali's loyalty mission. The voice work is superb.

Also god bless them for adding a separate melee button. That distance sensitive one in the first game could be an absolute nightmare.

trunkage:

mrdude2010:
It wouldn't have been too bad completely out of context, but it ran so directly counter to the entire series, its worldbuilding, its choices, etc. that it felt terrible.

Unfortunately, it was exactly like the other games. All that choices was pointless from the start

"All that those choices was were pointless" and "All those choices felt pointless" are two different things.

CaitSeith:

trunkage:

mrdude2010:
It wouldn't have been too bad completely out of context, but it ran so directly counter to the entire series, its worldbuilding, its choices, etc. that it felt terrible.

Unfortunately, it was exactly like the other games. All that choices was pointless from the start

"All that those choices was were pointless" and "All those choices felt pointless" are two different things.

I felt the pointlessness from the moment Cerberus turned up in ME2. Then Wrex's replacement. The genophage replacement. Then finding out that massive weakness the Reapers had at the end of 1 is just going to be ignored. Then you realise the utter pointlessness of ME2 (that the whole story could be cut out and not matter to the overall arc) and that they didn't use lots of quest/event flags from 1.

I understand. People usually love ME2 with reckless abandon given to most (over) hyped games. They forget to critically look at things because "its so good." The reverse happened to ME3 "the ending is bad so everything ME3 is bad." I generally am not one of those people

trunkage:

CaitSeith:

trunkage:
Unfortunately, it was exactly like the other games. All that choices was pointless from the start

"All that those choices was were pointless" and "All those choices felt pointless" are two different things.

I felt the pointlessness from the moment Cerberus turned up in ME2. Then Wrex's replacement. The genophage replacement. Then finding out that massive weakness the Reapers had at the end of 1 is just going to be ignored. Then you realise the utter pointlessness of ME2 (that the whole story could be cut out and not matter to the overall arc) and that they didn't use lots of quest/event flags from 1.

I understand. People usually love ME2 with reckless abandon given to most (over) hyped games. They forget to critically look at things because "its so good." The reverse happened to ME3 "the ending is bad so everything ME3 is bad." I generally am not one of those people

I think I misunderstood you when you said "other games". I'm sorry the more character-centred narrative in ME2 didn't hook you up as much as other people.

trunkage:
I felt the pointlessness from the moment Cerberus turned up in ME2. Then Wrex's replacement. The genophage replacement. Then finding out that massive weakness the Reapers had at the end of 1 is just going to be ignored. Then you realise the utter pointlessness of ME2 (that the whole story could be cut out and not matter to the overall arc) and that they didn't use lots of quest/event flags from 1.

I understand. People usually love ME2 with reckless abandon given to most (over) hyped games. They forget to critically look at things because "its so good." The reverse happened to ME3 "the ending is bad so everything ME3 is bad." I generally am not one of those people

Sometimes when you're screwing a supermodel it's best to not think too much about the big picture and simply enjoy the screwing. ;)

ME2 is (justifiably) hyped because its gameplay is really fun, its characters are really cool, and its missions are entertaining, including the epic-feeling finale.

Sure, there is a plot hole here and there that is casually explained away, and you're right, the game doesn't add much to the overall arc of stopping the Reapers. They could have released ME3 right after ME1, and with a few minor tweaks, it would have worked. But damn, ME2 is a fun game.

If you're going to make a pointless game, that's the way to do it.

CaitSeith:

trunkage:

CaitSeith:
"All that those choices was were pointless" and "All those choices felt pointless" are two different things.

I felt the pointlessness from the moment Cerberus turned up in ME2. Then Wrex's replacement. The genophage replacement. Then finding out that massive weakness the Reapers had at the end of 1 is just going to be ignored. Then you realise the utter pointlessness of ME2 (that the whole story could be cut out and not matter to the overall arc) and that they didn't use lots of quest/event flags from 1.

I understand. People usually love ME2 with reckless abandon given to most (over) hyped games. They forget to critically look at things because "its so good." The reverse happened to ME3 "the ending is bad so everything ME3 is bad." I generally am not one of those people

I think I misunderstood you when you said "other games". I'm sorry the more character-centred narrative in ME2 didn't hook you up as much as other people.

I think you might be mistaking being critical with aspects of a game with me disliking the game. I'm super critical of the Witcher 3 but can still recognise it as the best game of that year, perhaps that generation. I personally like all three MEs but for very different reasons and have no favourite. ME2 had so much great stuff going for it, but I wonder why it wasn't just a spin off. Shoe horning in the rest of the trilogy activitely makes all three games worse for me.

And let me make it clear again. Just because I'm critical of the trilogy doesn't stop it from being one of my favourite franchisees. I just bought Andromeda, and will play it before Easter. I'll probably love it and pick it apart at the same time too.

The ending to ME3 is not as horrendously bad as all the anti-hype and hate makes it out to be. It was somewhat lame and confusing, but still decent. You wrap up many stories with your old friends, kill the Reapers and save the galaxy as expected... that's pretty much it, plus there is some annoying kid talking bollocks at you for 5 mins or so right near the end.
It's partly that people were expecting a lot more, especially given all the hype about "sooooo0 many endings!!!!1!!1" only to get the "different coloured explosions" meme instead. Plus people love to hate things on the internet. The amount of hate this thing gathered so quickly is really just a testament to the high quality of the rest of the series.

FranklinZer0:
The ending to ME3 is not as horrendously bad as all the anti-hype and hate makes it out to be. It was somewhat lame and confusing, but still decent. You wrap up many stories with your old friends, kill the Reapers and save the galaxy as expected... that's pretty much it, plus there is some annoying kid talking bollocks at you for 5 mins or so right near the end.
It's partly that people were expecting a lot more, especially given all the hype about "sooooo0 many endings!!!!1!!1" only to get the "different coloured explosions" meme instead. Plus people love to hate things on the internet. The amount of hate this thing gathered so quickly is really just a testament to the high quality of the rest of the series.

I think it matters a lot if you played through the game upon release with the original ending, as opposed to playing the game for the first time later with the Extended Cut. From what I can tell, the original ending had a lot of jarring WTF gaps and holes in which things were just not explained. The Extended Cut filled in most of those, or at least tried to. But for people who saw the original ending on their first playthrough, I think it was too little too late, the damage was done, they can't unsee what they saw, and in their minds it can never be rectified or forgiven.

I played it for the first time a year later, with the Extended Cut. And yeah, I feel the ending could have been better, but I never got that kicked-in-the-nuts and stabbed-in-the-back feeling that apparently a lot of people got from the original ending.

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