MovieBob's thoughts on the ME3 ending controversy

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Wow a ton of people are missing the point in this thread, not to mention the fact that it lured all the bob anti-fanboys out to simply say they disagree without adding any real discussion. One thing a lot of people are getting hooked up on is whether or not it was a 'good' or 'bad' ending, which ultimately doesn't matter in context of what hes saying.

The point of his comments put simply are that by ret-conning, and literally deleting old content (which is why comics don't count... sorta), in demands to THE CONSUMER (this is why star wars doesn't count) after the final product has been released (this is why focus groups don't count), which is an unprecedented action in terms of an artistic medium, completely ruins the prospective artistic recognition afforded to ME as a whole, and even to games in general. Whether or not ME3 is worthy of being called art really doesn't matter, simply that it exists in an artistic medium, meaning it reflects on the rest of the medium when liberties are taken with its integrity. If a new ending is made, at the behest of anyone but the artist, it reflects very poorly on gaming in terms of an artistic medium, because it displays a lack of responsibility, and an overwhelming amount pandering.

This will ultimately harm the mediums transition into a recognized art form, which is something I hope most people who actually care about games want to to see happen. A thing most people fail to grasp, and especially on the internet, is that other people, and their respective opinions, actually do matter. So when something like this comes along and has the potential to smear gaming as a whole, people who care about games should be a lot more aware of what is about to transpire and take steps to prevent it.

Falcon123:
I'd argue that it's the interactivity of the player that separates them and creates an extra layer of immersion. That doesn't mean the player becomes the artist, though; Bioware still made the game. It gives the illusion of artistry that creates palpable immersion but is not genuine, and game developers do not owe anyone a good game; if a game is bad, it is the market's job to fix it. If a game is bad, people shouldn't buy it, and developers learn their lesson in the future. You can choose to continue giving them your money if you want, but you have to be aware that that money goes towards supporting their decisions, which they are more than free to make, even if their decisions are wrong. Every artist is allowed to make their art crap if they want, just as you're free to not like it. But they don't owe you a better game. That's not what art is about.

(I'm not sure if this was what you were getting at, but I've heard this argument within my group of friends, so I figured I'd just get my point out there know in case someone was going to go there. Please forgive me if I jumped the gun)

It goes a little beyond that. The player is a part of the narrative, helps form and shape the narrative. True, the player is limited by the tools the creator has made available to them, but they are invited to and REQUIRED to take a hand in forming their own narrative experience. Some people look at the evolution of this relationship as tearing us away from more traditional, fixed storytelling where authorial fiat is more entrenched, and they're terrified. They seem to think it guarantees we'll get sucked down into "storytelling by consensus", and all nuance and vision will be replaced by soulless moderation. I think this is an unnecessarily alarmist notion. You are witnessing...no...you are PART of the growth and evolution of a new art form. The idea of audience and artist telling a story together, and participating in a story together, is exciting. Instead of focusing on the potential negatives, take a few minutes to think about the potential BENEFITS. Think about where gaming can go, following an idea like that. Where you're no longer a passive observer of someone else's story, but an active co-author. The great irony in all of this is that Bioware is actually amenable to this concept. They can even be said to be champions of it. It's a selection of GAMERS that seem fixed against it.

As a second, less essential point...my friend, they truly fucked that ending up in ways that go well beyond the boundaries that are defensible under the umbrella of art. On that front, they DO have a responsibility to "fix" it, at the very least by tidying it up and correcting their continuity gaffes. Artistic license buys you a lot, but it doesn't give you carte blanche to sell people a bag of shit.

Falcon123:

Ticonderoga117:

Falcon123:

Let me make this clear: I think the ending sucked. I think the fans didn't get what they were promised, that Bioware dropped the ball, and that fans have ever reason to be upset about their purchase. But here's the thing: sometimes, games, movies, and books fail to live up to expectations. That doesn't mean we get to change them. When I was younger, I was a big fan of the Pendragon series. Book 1-9 were great. The tenth sucked. Horribly. Especially the ending. But I didn't demand a better ending. He has a right to screw his series over because it's his series . That's the thing about art. You don't have to like it. It doesn't have to be good. The artist can realize that things were wrong and try to fix it if that's what they want, but as of now, we have no proof this is what Bioware wanted.

Sure, I can buy this... for non-interactive media where I'm just an observer. If an author wants to do something like this I have one caveat for it: It must make sense in the premise of what was already established, or at least not break anything major along the way.

Mass Effect is a different animal here because while yes we have been limited to the tools we've been provided by Bioware to tell a story, they atleast had the common courtesy to not break me out of the suspension of disbelief, usually. Sure, a few hiccups here and there, but nothing too drastic. However, the way they decided to end this series (as it currently stands) feels like I was doing some painting, then suddenly Bioware stomps in and says "To finish this picture you can only use this one brush and three colors: Red, Green, or Blue. I don't care if I provided you more options earlier! You must stick with these for the end!" It's even more disappointing when talking about the picture earlier, it was mentioned I would be able to use everything for the entirety of the picture, especially the end.

I don't see how this is a different animal. You're not the artist, even if Bioware gave you the illusion that you are. They created the game. They created the universe in which the story exists, as well as every possible option you could make. They crafted the game from beginning to end. You played their creation. Big difference.

It's an awful shame Bioware let its fans down. They failed on this ending. They dropped the ball entirely. I'm not arguing against that. I agree with a lot of what you feel. They lied to you. They didn't deliver on their promises. They didn't make the masterpiece ending this game series deserved.

Where I differ from you is that I know this happens and it's not up to the developer to make it up to me. You don't like the ending? Don't buy their games. Don't buy their DLC. Don't support developers that make games you don't like. It's that simple. If you give them your money, and you don't think it was well spent, you take your licks and move on. That's how it was in the days of the NES when game reviews weren't easy to get a hold of and you had to guess whether a game would be good or not. No one demanded Dr. Jekyll and and Mr. Hyde be fixed.

I know you care about this series. That's not what's wrong here; that's what makes gaming special. But at the end of the day, you have to step back from your experience in game and realize that this wasn't your game. It was theirs. They screwed it up, but they don't owe you anything. If you don't like it, sell it back. Don't buy their games in the future. Learn your lesson. But demanding they meet your demands isn't right. You don't have that right; it's not your game.

That people feel entitled to have a game be good because you care about the series will have ramifications that affect gaming culture from years to come, and I find it hard to see how it will be for the better.

Sure back in the stupid ages of NES games people just whimpered, took it up the ass and moved on when they were delivered something crappy.

And they should be honored in a way about the outcry. No other game in history has made such a fuss about something, that is how much people loved their creation that they decided to cockslap with that ending.

And voting with their wallets is exactly what people are doing, they are getting the word out, encouraging people that haven't been exposed to the crappy ending to save their money as they will be disappointed, and making it clear that if this crap keeps up Bioware wont be getting any more of their money.

And the funny thing is, people can demand all the want, I can demand that you leave the forums, jump off a cliff, or drink a dr pepper. Demands don't mean shit if you don't want them to. Again, no one is holding a gun to their head and forcing them to remake the ending under pain of death.

Where the gun is pointed is squarely at their wallet. So maybe you would like gamers to bend over and just take whatever the publisher wants to shove on up in there, but dont expect everyone else to bend over with ya.

hazabaza1:
That's just MovieBob, isn't it? Y'know, that 'anyone who disagrees with me is an idiot' kind of attitude?

Hell that's not just Bob. Over the past couple of days I've seen around two dozen posts or more from people saying that the only reason the people who don't like the ME3 ending don't like it is because they're too stupid and ignorant to see the artistic meaning behind it.

If that really is the mindset of the "OMG! GAMES ARE ART!!!! TELL ME THEY'RE ART MR. EBERT!!!" crowd then I'm perfectly happy simply enjoying my games as games.

Savagezion:

Sentox6:

Bob Chipman:

This is the WORST thing that has happened to gaming since Sega abandoned consoles.

Well, at least that explains why he isn't GamerBob.

Me and him disagree most of the time, so its no surprise I think he is wrong yet again. I don't care about a poor movie critics view on the subject. It isn't shocking he has nothing new to add to the discussion, just recycled statements of gaming site articles playing up to Bioware's PR that coincidentally have motive to protect their ad space.

He isn't just a movie critic, his gaming blog has been going for a while now and I think he spends about an equal time talking about gaming as he does movies.

Halo Fanboy:
When did he start riding the Biodick?

This crap is popping up in the most unlikely places.

Well as an "artiste" himself, he has a vested interest in trying to convince people that his art is inviolate also. Brothers hang together.

Snide remark aside, I am not sure why he would react in such an immature fashion. I think he knows who signs his paycheque, and it seems with the exception of the "miracle of sound" guy who said he was "gutted" by the ending the staff at the escapist haven't exactly been on the side of the consumers now have they?

And Bob misses the point by a solid star cluster.

Dear MovieBob: Calm the fuck down.

Dear Mass Effect Crybabies: Your game had a disappointing ending. Get the fuck over it. Being BioWare doesn't mean they can't fuck up every now and then. They're still top in the industry in spite of this, so suck it up and move on.

BloatedGuppy:

Hyper-space:
And seriously, this is what Bob is talking about when he says gamers are immature. We would like for everyone to respect us, but yet we still cling to this childish notion of extreme entitlement and complete authority over the creative works and messages of others.

"We" do? Can you give me 5-10 examples of other gamer uprisings where we demanded to have a narrative changed?

As for wanting everyone to respect "us", I could really give less than a shit about whether or not non-gamers respect gaming. What possible difference does it make? It's about as important to me as whether or not people share my taste in music, or whether the guy sitting next to me likes spaghetti. If "gamers" are actually concerned about this, "gamers" would be well advised to stop being so fucking needy.

Would......would it be okay if I told you that I love you for this post?

Devoneaux:

Falcon123:

Ticonderoga117:

Sure, I can buy this... for non-interactive media where I'm just an observer. If an author wants to do something like this I have one caveat for it: It must make sense in the premise of what was already established, or at least not break anything major along the way.

Mass Effect is a different animal here because while yes we have been limited to the tools we've been provided by Bioware to tell a story, they atleast had the common courtesy to not break me out of the suspension of disbelief, usually. Sure, a few hiccups here and there, but nothing too drastic. However, the way they decided to end this series (as it currently stands) feels like I was doing some painting, then suddenly Bioware stomps in and says "To finish this picture you can only use this one brush and three colors: Red, Green, or Blue. I don't care if I provided you more options earlier! You must stick with these for the end!" It's even more disappointing when talking about the picture earlier, it was mentioned I would be able to use everything for the entirety of the picture, especially the end.

I don't see how this is a different animal. You're not the artist, even if Bioware gave you the illusion that you are. They created the game. They created the universe in which the story exists, as well as every possible option you could make. They crafted the game from beginning to end. You played their creation. Big difference.

It's an awful shame Bioware let its fans down. They failed on this ending. They dropped the ball entirely. I'm not arguing against that. I agree with a lot of what you feel. They lied to you. They didn't deliver on their promises. They didn't make the masterpiece ending this game series deserved.

Where I differ from you is that I know this happens and it's not up to the developer to make it up to me. You don't like the ending? Don't buy their games. Don't buy their DLC. Don't support developers that make games you don't like. It's that simple. If you give them your money, and you don't think it was well spent, you take your licks and move on. That's how it was in the days of the NES when game reviews weren't easy to get a hold of and you had to guess whether a game would be good or not. No one demanded Dr. Jekyll and and Mr. Hyde be fixed.

I know you care about this series. That's not what's wrong here; that's what makes gaming special. But at the end of the day, you have to step back from your experience in game and realize that this wasn't your game. It was theirs. They screwed it up, but they don't owe you anything. If you don't like it, sell it back. Don't buy their games in the future. Learn your lesson. But demanding they meet your demands isn't right. You don't have that right; it's not your game.

That people feel entitled to have a game be good because you care about the series will have ramifications that affect gaming culture from years to come, and I find it hard to see how it will be for the better.

Because when you were told you'd get one thing and you get something else, you have an obligation to yourself, as a consumer, to make a big deal out of it.

By all means, make a big deal out of it. Boycott Bioware games. Refuse to buy DLC. Write strongly worded letters expressing disapproval and making them aware they lost a fan due to their negligence, and make them win you back. You have a right to all of that. You don't have the right to tell them how to do their job, or demand that they be better at it. That doesn't work in any other industry or artistic medium, and the logic doesn't work here.

PrinceOfShapeir:

Falcon123:

Ticonderoga117:

Sure, I can buy this... for non-interactive media where I'm just an observer. If an author wants to do something like this I have one caveat for it: It must make sense in the premise of what was already established, or at least not break anything major along the way.

Mass Effect is a different animal here because while yes we have been limited to the tools we've been provided by Bioware to tell a story, they atleast had the common courtesy to not break me out of the suspension of disbelief, usually. Sure, a few hiccups here and there, but nothing too drastic. However, the way they decided to end this series (as it currently stands) feels like I was doing some painting, then suddenly Bioware stomps in and says "To finish this picture you can only use this one brush and three colors: Red, Green, or Blue. I don't care if I provided you more options earlier! You must stick with these for the end!" It's even more disappointing when talking about the picture earlier, it was mentioned I would be able to use everything for the entirety of the picture, especially the end.

I don't see how this is a different animal. You're not the artist, even if Bioware gave you the illusion that you are. They created the game. They created the universe in which the story exists, as well as every possible option you could make. They crafted the game from beginning to end. You played their creation. Big difference.

It's an awful shame Bioware let its fans down. They failed on this ending. They dropped the ball entirely. I'm not arguing against that. I agree with a lot of what you feel. They lied to you. They didn't deliver on their promises. They didn't make the masterpiece ending this game series deserved.

Where I differ from you is that I know this happens and it's not up to the developer to make it up to me. You don't like the ending? Don't buy their games. Don't buy their DLC. Don't support developers that make games you don't like. It's that simple. If you give them your money, and you don't think it was well spent, you take your licks and move on. That's how it was in the days of the NES when game reviews weren't easy to get a hold of and you had to guess whether a game would be good or not. No one demanded Dr. Jekyll and and Mr. Hyde be fixed.

I know you care about this series. That's not what's wrong here; that's what makes gaming special. But at the end of the day, you have to step back from your experience in game and realize that this wasn't your game. It was theirs. They screwed it up, but they don't owe you anything. If you don't like it, sell it back. Don't buy their games in the future. Learn your lesson. But demanding they meet your demands isn't right. You don't have that right; it's not your game.

That people feel entitled to have a game be good because you care about the series will have ramifications that affect gaming culture from years to come, and I find it hard to see how it will be for the better.

Next time devs will think twice about throwing us the worst ending since 'Congraturations, you save planet'?

See my response to the quote above you. Vote with your wallet. Boycott if you want. But you don't have the right to tell them how to do their jobs any more than they have the right to tell you the same.

Falcon123:
By all means, make a big deal out of it. Boycott Bioware games. Refuse to buy DLC. Write strongly worded letters expressing disapproval and making them aware they lost a fan due to their negligence, and make them win you back. You have a right to all of that. You don't have the right to tell them how to do their job, or demand that they be better at it. That doesn't work in any other industry or artistic medium, and the logic doesn't work here.

I'm not sure why this is a preferable outcome for anyone, most particularly Bioware.

Hyper-space:

And yes, it is important that we take this medium seriously.

.....Really?

All the anger, reactions, movements and petition nonsense regarding Mass Effect 3 and you think that people don't take video games seriously?

MrLumber:
The point of his comments put simply are that by ret-conning, and literally deleting old content (which is why comics don't count... sorta), in demands to THE CONSUMER (this is why star wars doesn't count) after the final product has been released (this is why focus groups don't count), which is an unprecedented action in terms of an artistic medium, completely ruins the prospective artistic recognition afforded to ME as a whole, and even to games in general.

But he is wrong, utterly wrong. I agree with Chipman on some stuff, but this is a factual error that derives from the modern naive view of "art" as an uncompromising opus radiating integrity.

Art has always been both a medium of expression AND a product, both aren't at odds with each other; see Ruben's work, Goya, Shakespeare, Michelangelo, Puccini, just of the top of my head all of them redid parts of released works to FIT THE FUCKING AUDIENCE, because art IS a product.

It is nice to live in ivory castles though... i guess.

You know another reason for why Bob is squarely wrong; This game is was longer "art" the moment BioWare looked to fan input to help develop ME2 and ME3.

If BioWare wanted to keep the ME series as "art" then they should have ignored every single complaint, & suggestions of change.
The moment they changed their game to make it better marketable based on player/market feed back, they were no longer making art, they started making a product for mass consumption (ignore the pun).

Also, they lost the "art" card the moment they started making promises on what you could expect in that game. When you give specific promises on key game play and story line elements (all while looking for feed back on those elements) you can no longer say this game is "art".

You want your game to be art? Make no promises other then a very broad statement "A soldiers journey to unite the galaxy to stop a evil threat." and you stick to your vision and ideals of the game (as much as technically possible) and ignore all external input regardless on how well those ideas are.

edit: Unless your idea from the very start is based off of outside corroboration, then those elements can still be art; as thats the nature of those projects is to accept outside input for further development of ideas of the art project.

What is wrong if a game developer acknowledges that they fucked up and decides to edit what they did to correct it? People hated the ending to Fallout 3, so Bethesda made the Broken Steel DLC as a response. Developers have caved in to player demand for much more pettier reasons than "the ending sucked", such as changing Cole McGrath's appearance in InFamous 2. It changes absolutely nothing to to plot or the gameplay but the developers still did it.

I'm really getting sick of all this "art" nonsense too. What difference does it make if games are considered as an art form or not? Aren't games meant to entertain people? Sure they can bring up all kinds of philosophical themes but they also have to be made so that they are fun enough to make the player want to keep going.

Kahunaburger:
Considering that his defense of Other M basically boiled down to:

image

...I tend to take whatever he has to say about video game controversies with a grain of salt.

I may be wrong here, but I saw the revisited episode first, then the original and read it more as "Because of that infamous moment of weakness scene, everyone is jumping on the 'Japan hates women' bandwagon, and thats borderline racism there".

BloatedGuppy:

Falcon123:
I'd argue that it's the interactivity of the player that separates them and creates an extra layer of immersion. That doesn't mean the player becomes the artist, though; Bioware still made the game. It gives the illusion of artistry that creates palpable immersion but is not genuine, and game developers do not owe anyone a good game; if a game is bad, it is the market's job to fix it. If a game is bad, people shouldn't buy it, and developers learn their lesson in the future. You can choose to continue giving them your money if you want, but you have to be aware that that money goes towards supporting their decisions, which they are more than free to make, even if their decisions are wrong. Every artist is allowed to make their art crap if they want, just as you're free to not like it. But they don't owe you a better game. That's not what art is about.

(I'm not sure if this was what you were getting at, but I've heard this argument within my group of friends, so I figured I'd just get my point out there know in case someone was going to go there. Please forgive me if I jumped the gun)

It goes a little beyond that. The player is a part of the narrative, helps form and shape the narrative. True, the player is limited by the tools the creator has made available to them, but they are invited to and REQUIRED to take a hand in forming their own narrative experience. Some people look at the evolution of this relationship as tearing us away from more traditional, fixed storytelling where authorial fiat is more entrenched, and they're terrified. They seem to think it guarantees we'll get sucked down into "storytelling by consensus", and all nuance and vision will be replaced by soulless moderation. I think this is an unnecessarily alarmist notion. You are witnessing...no...you are PART of the growth and evolution of a new art form. The idea of audience and artist telling a story together, and participating in a story together, is exciting. Instead of focusing on the potential negatives, take a few minutes to think about the potential BENEFITS. Think about where gaming can go, following an idea like that. Where you're no longer a passive observer of someone else's story, but an active co-author. The great irony in all of this is that Bioware is actually amenable to this concept. They can even be said to be champions of it. It's a selection of GAMERS that seem fixed against it.

As a second, less essential point...my friend, they truly fucked that ending up in ways that go well beyond the boundaries that are defensible under the umbrella of art. On that front, they DO have a responsibility to "fix" it, at the very least by tidying it up and correcting their continuity gaffes. Artistic license buys you a lot, but it doesn't give you carte blanche to sell people a bag of shit.

I agree that players are a key part of that art. They are instrumental in bringing that art to fruition. But sadly, this does not make us the artist.

I think it would be interesting for developers to work with players to make a game...but not in this context. Not when either the consumers or developers are being metaphorically held at gunpoint by the other side. At this point, any movement towards a collaborative effort will appear as if they are caving into demand and sacrificing their artistry (and the effect on the industry will be the same) even if it's not true.

I agree, friend, that the ending is shit. It's horrible. If you read my article ( http://www.redshirtcrew.com/2012/03/why-mass-effect-3-has-changed-industry.html ) you know I understand where you're coming from, and you have my deepest sympathies. But this is the wrong way to come about it. Don't support this practice by giving them your money, thus telling them that what they've done is okay. Sell your game, don't buy the DLC, and make Bioware earn your trust back. All of that is fair. Maybe they'll learn their lesson that way and who knows, maybe they will start a collaborative effort with a gaming community that changes the way games are made. But if you buy the ending DLC, you're supporting this mess, they won't learn the lesson, and all the outside world will see is that Bioware didn't stand up for their product. The ramifications of that will shape the industry as we know it, and I don't think it will be for the better.

Artistic integrity + day one DLC = does not compute.

How can you treat games as a serious medium where the content already on DVD has to be unlocked with more money?

Or to get the understanding of ME3's beginning, you HAD to buy Arrival, the ME2 DLC?

You can talk about art and shit, but it doesn't matter if the "artist" is inconsistent.

http://imgur.com/TEpJv

So, when consumer is angry and they want to get money, artistic integrity lol wut's dat. When customer already paid and he's angry, they want their precious integrity intact.

How about they make an ending that isn't full of plotholes, bullshit inconsistencies and lore/character/plot errors (Arrival's mass relay was already destroyed, cinematic shows that it's the first mass relay that explodes in ME3's ending - HOW? time travel? extra dimensions?), then we'll talk about integrity.

Also, closure. Damn to hell all storywriters and artists that forget to give the consumer ANY KIND OF CLOSURE.

Poof, magic. Poof, your teammates teleport to Normandy and desert you, committing treason. Poof, they crash on a jungle world... THE END NO QUESTIONS? OKAY!

Falcon123:

See my response to the quote above you. Vote with your wallet. Boycott if you want. But you don't have the right to tell them how to do their jobs any more than they have the right to tell you the same.

I didn't realize I'm an artist that created a trilogy and then ended it abruptly, destroying all loose ends in 5 minutes not by resolving them, but cauterizing and making them obsolete.

FelixG:

Falcon123:

Ticonderoga117:

Sure, I can buy this... for non-interactive media where I'm just an observer. If an author wants to do something like this I have one caveat for it: It must make sense in the premise of what was already established, or at least not break anything major along the way.

Mass Effect is a different animal here because while yes we have been limited to the tools we've been provided by Bioware to tell a story, they atleast had the common courtesy to not break me out of the suspension of disbelief, usually. Sure, a few hiccups here and there, but nothing too drastic. However, the way they decided to end this series (as it currently stands) feels like I was doing some painting, then suddenly Bioware stomps in and says "To finish this picture you can only use this one brush and three colors: Red, Green, or Blue. I don't care if I provided you more options earlier! You must stick with these for the end!" It's even more disappointing when talking about the picture earlier, it was mentioned I would be able to use everything for the entirety of the picture, especially the end.

I don't see how this is a different animal. You're not the artist, even if Bioware gave you the illusion that you are. They created the game. They created the universe in which the story exists, as well as every possible option you could make. They crafted the game from beginning to end. You played their creation. Big difference.

It's an awful shame Bioware let its fans down. They failed on this ending. They dropped the ball entirely. I'm not arguing against that. I agree with a lot of what you feel. They lied to you. They didn't deliver on their promises. They didn't make the masterpiece ending this game series deserved.

Where I differ from you is that I know this happens and it's not up to the developer to make it up to me. You don't like the ending? Don't buy their games. Don't buy their DLC. Don't support developers that make games you don't like. It's that simple. If you give them your money, and you don't think it was well spent, you take your licks and move on. That's how it was in the days of the NES when game reviews weren't easy to get a hold of and you had to guess whether a game would be good or not. No one demanded Dr. Jekyll and and Mr. Hyde be fixed.

I know you care about this series. That's not what's wrong here; that's what makes gaming special. But at the end of the day, you have to step back from your experience in game and realize that this wasn't your game. It was theirs. They screwed it up, but they don't owe you anything. If you don't like it, sell it back. Don't buy their games in the future. Learn your lesson. But demanding they meet your demands isn't right. You don't have that right; it's not your game.

That people feel entitled to have a game be good because you care about the series will have ramifications that affect gaming culture from years to come, and I find it hard to see how it will be for the better.

Sure back in the stupid ages of NES games people just whimpered, took it up the ass and moved on when they were delivered something crappy.

And they should be honored in a way about the outcry. No other game in history has made such a fuss about something, that is how much people loved their creation that they decided to cockslap with that ending.

And voting with their wallets is exactly what people are doing, they are getting the word out, encouraging people that haven't been exposed to the crappy ending to save their money as they will be disappointed, and making it clear that if this crap keeps up Bioware wont be getting any more of their money.

And the funny thing is, people can demand all the want, I can demand that you leave the forums, jump off a cliff, or drink a dr pepper. Demands don't mean shit if you don't want them to. Again, no one is holding a gun to their head and forcing them to remake the ending under pain of death.

Where the gun is pointed is squarely at their wallet. So maybe you would like gamers to bend over and just take whatever the publisher wants to shove on up in there, but dont expect everyone else to bend over with ya.

See, I wish people were doing what you're describing. But all the people who demanded this new ending DLC will most assuredly buy it, and Bioware will learn nothing because despite the horrible PR, they will still have a massive fan base and piles of money from this game. People keep buying this game. People keep buying the DLC. People aren't actually threatening Bioware's wallets.

I implore people to boycott Bioware. I'm buying all their games used from now on, personally, and I'm refusing to buy their DLC because I don't want them to have my money. If others do the same, I'll be ecstatic. But I don't think they will. I think people want this ending so badly, they'll pay the price regardless of their principles, and the industry will be changed forever in the worst of ways.

I fail to see why it must be a sacrifice of artistic integrity to re-write an ending. We would never grow as a society if no-one paid any attention to criticism.

BloatedGuppy:

Falcon123:
By all means, make a big deal out of it. Boycott Bioware games. Refuse to buy DLC. Write strongly worded letters expressing disapproval and making them aware they lost a fan due to their negligence, and make them win you back. You have a right to all of that. You don't have the right to tell them how to do their job, or demand that they be better at it. That doesn't work in any other industry or artistic medium, and the logic doesn't work here.

I'm not sure why this is a preferable outcome for anyone, most particularly Bioware.

People say that Bioware screwed up. They failed to deliver an ending. If you don't like what a developer does, don't buy their products. That's just how the market works. If they take a big enough hit, they'll learn and produce a better or product, or they won't and die out. That's how the market works.

My point is this: if you feel they did you wrong as a gamer, don't support them. But you don't have the right to tell them what to do or how to do their job if they choose to be underwhelming and underachieving. That's all I was trying to say

Morti:
I fail to see why it must be a sacrifice of artistic integrity to re-write an ending. We would never grow as a society if no-one paid any attention to criticism.

It's not that they're re-writing the ending. Fallout 3 rewrote the ending and it wasn't a big deal. The problem is that they're re-writing the ending to meet others demands instead of their own vision, and that's not what art is about. People are telling Bioware how to do their job, and instead of standing up for their game, right or wrong (see Lucas, George for a equivalent demand in cinema), they caved. That's the sacrifice of artistic integrity. They're not doing it for themselves or their own vision, but merely to make a profit. That's what products do. That's not art.

Falcon123:

I implore people to boycott Bioware. I'm buying all their games used from now on, personally, and I'm refusing to buy their DLC because I don't want them to have my money. If others do the same, I'll be ecstatic. But I don't think they will. I think people want this ending so badly, they'll pay the price regardless of their principles, and the industry will be changed forever in the worst of ways.

Buying their games used doesn't make it a boycott, it makes you a hypocrite.

What you are telling them is that their game is good enough to play but you dont want to pay full price for it. It makes you no better to a pirate. After all a pirate is handing their money to an ISP so they can use bandwidth to download the game, you just happen to be handing that money to gamestop instead.

If you wanted to make a statement, don't buy the game at all, none of this "well I am going to play it but I am going to make sure they don't see a penny from it!!1one!1" stuff.

FelixG:

Falcon123:

I implore people to boycott Bioware. I'm buying all their games used from now on, personally, and I'm refusing to buy their DLC because I don't want them to have my money. If others do the same, I'll be ecstatic. But I don't think they will. I think people want this ending so badly, they'll pay the price regardless of their principles, and the industry will be changed forever in the worst of ways.

Buying their games used doesn't make it a boycott, it makes you a hypocrite.

What you are telling them is that their game is good enough to play but you dont want to pay full price for it. It makes you no better to a pirate. After all a pirate is handing their money to an ISP so they can use bandwidth to download the game, you just happen to be handing that money to gamestop instead.

If you wanted to make a statement, don't buy the game at all, none of this "well I am going to play it but I am going to make sure they don't see a penny from it!!1one!1" stuff.

Fair point. I could discuss the finer points with you on it, but at the same time, I've criticized others for the same point. I won't buy ME3, that's for sure. From there...we'll see. They'll have to do quite a bit to win me back after this mess

This whole "Art vs product" thing is fairly stupid, in my opinion.

It shows that Bob is a critic of cinema, because cinema is very rarely, if ever, done on a third party commission basis, but let's liken this to a painting, arguably the oldest form of art.

I am Mr Random J. Painter, i got myself a commission to portray the likeness of some rich guy and his family. I have complete artistic freedom on the style i choose as long as it is a realistic depiction of my client and his family. If you think that this is not art, and that art is only done for art's sake, then you can rule out as art everything DaVinci ever produced.

Besides, If we're talking art for art's sake, Bioware is already not qualifying. Electronic Arts, as publisher, or patron if you will, has obviously dictated some of the policies regarding the product, including, more than likely, the introduction of multiplayer.

I ask them to pose for my painting, work on it and then deliver an abstract painting that, to me, is a perfect representation of the client and his family. The client tells me he's not paying one dime, to take my painting and go home, because he specified he wanted a realistic depiction of himself and family, not some abstract representation. I go home with my painting and sob in the corner.

Now let's assume I recieved ALL the money in advance, and then delivered the painting. What would the next step for the client be? I would say "lawsuit". He has a written contract where we stipulated that i was to make a realistic depiction of him, i did not fullfill my part of the contract. I lose and give his money back.

Now let's say I offered to paint everyone who sent me a picture of themselves along with 60 bucks a personalized painting that faithfully represented them and mail it back to them. I then pull the same stunt i did with the client. The first group of clients, arguably the most excited for this, only had my word for it, because the first batch shipped all at once, and therefore they could not have any idea of the finished product before they recieved it. How is this any different?

Art for art's sake has no constraints, because it has no investors. But ever since the very beginning of civilization, artists needed patrons. who dictated what their art was going to be.

So, either you do your art for free, and we won't argue with what you do (See: Passage) or you make us pay for it, in which case you can be sure we're going to object if we think we've been wronged.

Frankly, returning the product en masse should be all a company needs to see they have to change something. Yes it is art, but it is not free from accountability.

If you want art to be free of constraint, you make it completely free to experience from start to finish (see: painting) and then allow me to buy it/donate to you.

If you expect me to pay a significant sum, in advance, without anything but your word to tell me what i'm buying, which turns out is worth nothing because you deliberately lied about the content, and then invest a significant amount of my time to experience your piece, you damn well better respect your word.

I'm not saying i have to like it, but i DEMAND that i get what i was lead to believe i was buying, which didn't happen with the portrait and didn't happen with Mass effect's ending, as i'm sure we all know already.

Ah yes, because being accepted by Roger Ebert should really be the number one goal of video games as a medium. This is such a good idea. This is like all the metal bands I listen to deciding that they're no good unless some random country and western critic decides that they are. It's honestly quite disappointing.

Falcon123:
I agree that players are a key part of that art. They are instrumental in bringing that art to fruition. But sadly, this does not make us the artist.

I think it would be interesting for developers to work with players to make a game...but not in this context. Not when either the consumers or developers are being metaphorically held at gunpoint by the other side. At this point, any movement towards a collaborative effort will appear as if they are caving into demand and sacrificing their artistry (and the effect on the industry will be the same) even if it's not true.

I agree, friend, that the ending is shit. It's horrible. If you read my article ( http://www.redshirtcrew.com/2012/03/why-mass-effect-3-has-changed-industry.html ) you know I understand where you're coming from, and you have my deepest sympathies. But this is the wrong way to come about it. Don't support this practice by giving them your money, thus telling them that what they've done is okay. Sell your game, don't buy the DLC, and make Bioware earn your trust back. All of that is fair. Maybe they'll learn their lesson that way and who knows, maybe they will start a collaborative effort with a gaming community that changes the way games are made. But if you buy the ending DLC, you're supporting this mess, they won't learn the lesson, and all the outside world will see is that Bioware didn't stand up for their product. The ramifications of that will shape the industry as we know it, and I don't think it will be for the better.

Make you the artist? Of course it doesn't. It makes you less than a passive consumer, though. It creates a situation where it's significantly more NATURAL for you to want a voice in the creative process.

As for Bioware learning their lesson...the only reason a dialogue exists with them regarding this nonsense is because they're taking a hammering. Releasing DLC for a profit at this point wouldn't be any kind of canny sales coup, nor an indication that they'll be hot in the pants to repeat this spectacle. At the end of the day, though, I don't really have a powerful motivation to teach Bioware lessons. I just want them to deliver me a quality product, for which I will give them money. I could just stop buying from them altogether, or I can offer them an opportunity to fix the stupid mess they made, which, as it happens, shouldn't really be that hard to do, as its contained in such a tiny portion of the game. I certainly don't think other developers are watching this, stroking their chins, and thinking "Geez, how can WE fuck up OUR games and get 90% of the fan base hating us so we can sell additional DLC?". Wouldn't it just make more sense to write such a good ending that everyone is ENTHUSED, and buy your DLC because they're HAPPY with your product? That seems like a better business plan.

as someone pointed out in another thread if bioware are willing to change a ME3 novel due to fan complaints i dont see it any different from changing one single part of ME3 due to fan complaints.

movie bob has an opinion and while i dont agree with him on this particular issue hes entitled to it.

Yes games are art. We all know they are, so it doesn't matter what others think or say, or it shouldn't at any rate. However, the fact that games are an art form does not give those who create them a pass to make any claims they like about the PRODUCT that they are creating, and then sell it without keeping or rescinding those promises.

If Bioware choose to expand on or change the endings, it won't invalidate their status as art, any more than ending the game with an advertisement for DLC will. What it will do is fulfil the promises they made to their paying customers, whilst, in my eyes at least, improving the quality of the product/art overall. Provided the changes they make are not compulsory, I cannot see any reason to be unhappy with them, assuming they are of a decent quality of course.

Also, although I respect Bob's opinion, I wish he could make it heard without insulting all those who disagree with him. I would also like to be told exactly why art cannot be changed, in a more substantive way than simply "because its art!".

Falcon123:

Morti:
I fail to see why it must be a sacrifice of artistic integrity to re-write an ending. We would never grow as a society if no-one paid any attention to criticism.

It's not that they're re-writing the ending. Fallout 3 rewrote the ending and it wasn't a big deal. The problem is that they're re-writing the ending to meet others demands instead of their own vision, and that's not what art is about. People are telling Bioware how to do their job, and instead of standing up for their game, right or wrong (see Lucas, George for a equivalent demand in cinema), they caved. That's the sacrifice of artistic integrity. They're not doing it for themselves or their own vision, but merely to make a profit. That's what products do. That's not art.

This right here is my problem. There was never an artistic vision at play. Typically, someone basing art on, and tying art to the works of another, or even their own previous work, will have the respect for the material not to openly make it null and void or to simply conflict with it out right. But the fact that they're pulling some sort of "It's art!" card as a cheap transparent defense does nobody any good. It cheapens the worth of ACTUAL art when they use it to cover their asses.

Fappy:
I thought people wrote his opinions on gaming off as bat-shit crazy ages ago. Bob's the only guy I know about that creams himself at any mention of the tanooki suit.

Bob only has two settings, nerdrage and nerdgasm. Everything he talks about from movies to comics to games is either the worse thing since Hilter and Skeletor riding a giant mechanical spider fueled by baby blood or a 25 out of 10 flawless god child who will deliver us into the promised land.

Not to mention his pretty much non-stop hypocrisy on.. well.. everything. Like someone else said, if Bob had his way he'd happily have Michael Bay completely remake Transformers to fit his vision because he didn't like it. He doesn't sit and say "Well I don't like it, but it IS art," no he complains constantly about how awful it is and how dumb anyone who likes it is.

Really, it concerns me that so many people, including myself, are dignifying his comments enough to comment on them. Bob is a troll or a controversy-whore more often than not, I still haven't been able to determine which is more appropriate.

Also, as much as it pains people to admit this, games are art and a product. The criticisms of ME3s endings aren't all "We' don't like it," as much as people calling it out for a slapped on, plot hole ridden rush job that even Bioware admits they didn't put much effort into.

Kahunaburger:
Considering that his defense of Other M basically boiled down to:

image

...I tend to take whatever he has to say about video game controversies with a grain of salt.

Agreed.

Film. Video Games.

Pretty distinct mediums. XD

Promise multiple varied endings with closure to the various characters and plotlines. Give us 3 recolored endings and little to no closure.

"Ah yes. 'Artistic Integrity.' The idea of consistency in one's actions through an artistic medium. We have dismissed this claim."

Falcon123:

Morti:
I fail to see why it must be a sacrifice of artistic integrity to re-write an ending. We would never grow as a society if no-one paid any attention to criticism.

It's not that they're re-writing the ending. Fallout 3 rewrote the ending and it wasn't a big deal. The problem is that they're re-writing the ending to meet others demands instead of their own vision, and that's not what art is about. People are telling Bioware how to do their job, and instead of standing up for their game, right or wrong (see Lucas, George for a equivalent demand in cinema), they caved. That's the sacrifice of artistic integrity. They're not doing it for themselves or their own vision, but merely to make a profit. That's what products do. That's not art.

"We" are not telling them HOW to rewrite the ending, but "we" we are asking that they SHOULD rewrite the ending that is more in-lines with the themes of the series. A ending that that makes sense and delivers on the promise that the choices we've made in the previous game have more of difference other then some characters showing up for 30 second cameo's on how Shepard made a difference at giving them a final shot of survival.

They can still keep their "artistic integrity" by creating a new ending, we are just calling them out on the fact they did not deliver on their originally stated "artistic" promise.

Also layer on the fact that somebody playing the MP can get a better ending (which there isn't really even one), then somebody who attempts to play the single player to the integrity of their character.

The ending of ME3 does not matter on your any of player choices in any of the previous games. BioWare failed on both their own "artistic integrity" of the medium they developed and failed on the "product integrity" in regarding to most of the promises they didn't keep.

I mean, if you order a steak sandwich from Gordon Ramsay, and he goes out and gets you a McD's hamburger, are you going to accept that?

I'm glad to see Bob has approached this in his traditional respectful manner which activly investigates the position of both sides and tries to be as free from bias as possible to give a rational and unemotional response./sarcasm

I think my main problem with this is the idea that art isn't a product when it quite obviously is. If you live in a society with money then it is a product. It is also art (though for me the Asylum film's are art albeit pretty god awful so my definition may differ from others) in that it seeks to have an emotional resonance with the individual.

There is also the added dimension fo the specter of DLC. We have no idea if Bioware was planning to release DLC that provides more conclusion at the end, just like Prince of Persia. Surely if this is the case then the outrage is right to ensure that the art is kept as uncompromised as possible? If the Mona Lisa had just a normal smile with Da Vince promising to sell her real smile separately then surely individuals would be right to complain?

There is also the problem with Hudson's quite obviously false descriptions of what the end would be like.

So yes Bioware is the ultimate arbitrator on what's canon/what ending happens there is no reason to suggest they shouldn't be willing to change it if they want. Some people point out that might lead to a slippery slope but honestly if we have to pick between the two extremes of endings change all the time due to fan pressure versus endings being sold separately depending on what game you buy I would always chose the former.

Captcha: Look out! A prophet

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