Movies have the Poltergeist curse, TV has the curse of "Our Gang," and pro football has the Madden curse – but if videogames have a cursed property all their own, it may well be Mass Effect 3. The latest woes for Bioware's epic include a patch that causes more problems than it solves, a multiplayer event's cancelled virtual venue, and a dressing-down from the Better Business Bureau.
Bioware is currently running a forum thread to gather data on a new issue raised by the latest patch for the game, which aimed to fix bugs in the title's character-import system but instead has resulted in widespread crashes and lockouts. The company's posted a temporary workaround, which you should follow to the letter lest you delete your entire Mass Effect game save with no-one to blame but yourself (which, doubtless, would mean plenty of people just blamed Bioware instead). CVG reports a less terrifying fix of disconnecting from Xbox Live when booting up the game, so try that first.
Meanwhile, PS3 owners are locked out of the latest player challenge, this weekend's XP-boosting event based around Mass Effect 3's multiplayer "Resurgence" DLC. Bioware says Sony won't approve the promo, the latest in a string of events enjoyed by PC and Xbox 360 owners. “We continue to work with them to find a compromise,” says the company, “but until then, Sony will not allow us to run the same Multiplayer Challenges on the PlayStation 3 that we run on Xbox 360 and PC.”
While Bioware works on these problems, it's also been called out by consumer watchdog the Better Business Bureau over the game's advertising. Analyzing the game's sales claims, BBB's Marjorie Stephens calls out the game's promises of “decisions [which] completely shape your experience” and “radically different ending scenarios.” No fine or penalties are mentioned; however, “companies should give careful consideration to how they word their advertisements,” concludes Stephens: “otherwise, there could be detrimental effects, especially in the era of social media and online forums.” Masters of understatement, that Better Business Bureau.
We don't enjoy bringing you all this dire Mass Effect 3 news any more than you enjoy reading it – which, judging from the comments and pageviews, would seem to suggest that everyone's enjoying it just fine. However, let's close on a positive note: NPD reports that Mass Effect 3 was the top-selling game for the month of March. You don't get to that position – or earn a 9/10 in our Mass Effect 3 review – by being a rubbish game, after all. But you might want to avoid breaking any mirrors or opening umbrellas in Mass Effect 3's presence, just in case.