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529 comments

  • keeganlewis - March 23, 2012 11:55 a.m.

    I've been visiting this website since you were cheatplanet.com, and I must say this article is a huge disappointment. Somewhere along the line gamesradar decided they wanted to be "big boy" journalists, and started writing more intricate in-depth articles. But with that comes the responsibility of doing in-depth research to understand what one is writing about. "I don’t know what the ending of Mass Effect 3 entails, and I don’t care. I haven’t even played Mass Effect 3 yet. Hell, I’m still working through the first one at the moment..." Is this a joke? Are you serious? Are you really writing about the Mass Effect 3 ending controversy, and you are not even through Mass Effect 1? A real journalist researches his topic to create an informed opinion. You have just spouted your ignorant thoughts, and demonized the group who makes up your reader, gamers. Mr. Houghton, your article is bad, and it makes you look bad. Worse, it makes gamesradar look bad. Perhaps this just shows us what gamesradar is all about.
  • ParagonT - March 23, 2012 3:39 p.m.

    Very well thought out.
  • pfellah - March 23, 2012 11:43 a.m.

    You know what's more vital to the game industry? That companies release a quality product, and not spew outright lies about the product they're delivering. It's hard to do this without spoilering too much, but since the author sees fit to wade in without having played the game, whatever... All of what follows is paraphrasing, but you can look up the quotes. They stated it wouldn't be an A/B/C ending; it was an A/B/C ending. They said they could do wildly diverging endings since they're weren't beholden to keep things ready for a sequel; we got three ending options that used about 95% identical footage and the same broad-strokes consequences. They said they wouldn't "pull a LOST", that they'd wrap things up; they left so many loose threads dangling that Damon Lindleof himself is making fun of them on Twitter. They said player choice would matter; instead, many of the key choices you made during the course of the game (and the series) were rendered irrelevant by the last 10 minutes. This ending controversy isn't "a difference of opinions" or a referendum on art; it's about the fact that EA/Bioware delivered a final product which was EXACTLY what they said it wouldn't be. Artistic merit has its place in the conversation, but accountability and quality are more important.
  • Desann - March 23, 2012 11:38 a.m.

    Though you say you're not here to kick the protesters, I think you did just that. I don't know; I'm kinda taking it personally that you think anyone that feels the ending sucks is "non-qualified" and "non-professional". That calling out Bioware on dropping the ball is just a "knee-jerk" reaction from a bunch of whiny, uneducated, and unproductive drains on society. Pretty unfair of you to make such a blanket statement only so you can try to undermine and discredit anyone who isn't satisfied. And why do you take it so personally that people aren't satisfied that you want to lash out at anyone who says otherwise? I don't agree that having them change the ending or add a real ending at the request of the fans will signal the end of storytelling. An ending has to be really, really badly written for there to be enough dissatisfied people for it to even register to the company as an issue. That'll continue to be the case, I think. I don't see this spiraling out of control at all. Besides, if Bioware is doing what I think they're doing, they're to blame; they probably planned to sell us the real ending from the start. If anything, companies are going to look at Bioware's evil scheme of selling endings to their games as good business. At least the real ending DLC isn't already on the disk. ...Right?
  • ParagonT - March 23, 2012 3:41 p.m.

    That's sort of how I felt. It's very immature to make a blanket statement of negativity to a group because they're opinion differs from you.
  • AndorianBlues - March 23, 2012 11:36 a.m.

    The writer of this article is so utterly confused that I can only assume they are being willfully ignorant. I mean this in the nicest way possible, because the alternative is that they really think what they're writing makes sense. I ask you, if fans were annoyed at Bioware for the balance of a shotgun weapon in the game, would you be saying it were "vital for the future health of games" that Bioware not tweak the balance? I'm guessing not, because that sort of thing happens almost every time a game is released. So what makes it any different when it's the story that needs changing? The fact of the matter is, creative endeavors (call it "art", if you want) have *always* been about conversation between creator and audience. Creation is not a one way street, and it never has been. To think so is to severely misunderstand the nature of creativity. This has been true of paintings, plays, books, movies, TV shows throughout their existence, and it is just as true of video games, as anybody who plays games already knows whenever they get a new patch or update installed. In fact, many have argued it is *much* more so the case when it comes to video games. Their interactivity puts the player in the center of the story, and, especially in the case of RPGs, gives a sense of ownership and agency that is impossible in old media. When this sense of agency is taken away from them (not going into details on the ending, but anyone who has played it knows what I'm talking about) it is right that they see this is an error on the part of Bioware. The second thing that makes games different is that the nature of patches and DLC mean that works can be modified even after they've been purchased. This allows creators to fluidly respond to feedback and audience responses in a way that was never possible with old media. Even Bioware themselves have credited the fans with being part of their creative process. As executive producer Casey Hudson said in an interview just before the game was released "You know, at this point, I think we’re co-creators with the fans. We use a lot of feedback." Without the willingness to react to audience feedback the Mass Effect series would not be what it is today. So this is not some absurd dangerous never-before-done precedent being set. In fact ignoring the fans would be the real danger, the real departure from form. Changing things based on audience feedback is an intrinsic part of art, an intrinsic part of this medium, and an intrinsic part of the Mass Effect series.
  • Roentgen - March 23, 2012 12:09 p.m.

    Maybe Mr. Houghton is actually indoctrinated and to get the real article we'll have to pay $15 dollars to gamesradar in a month's time.
  • ParagonT - March 23, 2012 3:43 p.m.

    I see what you did there...
  • RebornKusabi - March 23, 2012 11:35 a.m.

    I hate to pile on but as a long time reader, I have to admit this article was quite poor from the beginning. If you want to discuss a topic, than it is advisable to do some research on the subject matter before talking about it. I have yet to play Mass Effect 3 but when I heard about all of this hoopla about the endings, I did what any intelligent person would do: I rolled my sleeves up, jumped into the shit, and found out why people were so angry about the endings. In other words, I did journalistic research and I wasn't even payed to do so... which brings me to the point of your article and why it fails. Simply put- endings and game content HAS been changed before and the industry and video game storytelling in general has moved on from that with no damage to its health at all. Examples? Fallout 3 received ending DLC after fan complaints. http://fallout.wikia.com/wiki/Broken_Steel Prince of Persia 2008 received ending DLC as well... http://www.giantbomb.com/news/prince-of-persia-continues-with-epilogue-dlc/870/ Fans complained about Cole's new model in inFamous 2 so it was changed from this back to his old character model http://www.cheatmasters.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Cole_new.jpg And that is just immediate examples of it. I seem to recall some Persona games having epilogue content and those were sold after the game released. Oh and Bioware has listened to fan complaints before, you and most gaming sites seem to forget that Garrus and Tali were highly requested romantic choices for Mass Effect 2 and look at that... They were romance-able in ME2 and it didn't effect the games story or theme. I have stayed quiet on this issue because I frankly find it all funny to see Bioware crash and burn after years of fans sucking that companies **** but when my favorite site for reviews, news and overall humor inputs their opinion on the subject without doing the mediocum of research that I have done without being payed to do it!? That's just sad, and honestly disappointing and pretty representative of the overall decline in quality the site has been going through in the last year. I expect better from you guys.
  • ParagonT - March 23, 2012 3:46 p.m.

    I really enjoyed your last paragraph, you should seriously apply for a reviewing position, seriously. Doesn't have to be here, but anywhere.
  • Konachan - March 23, 2012 11:33 a.m.

    Self-entitled? Really? This must be THE buzzword of the year. And ironically most of your journalists seem unable to grasp the meaning of the world. And concerning the "writers are the same and can be trusted argument": The main writer of Mass Effect 1 and 2 has actually left. Look it up.
  • TheHowetzer - March 23, 2012 12:07 p.m.

    Seriously people you are starting to piss me off, you NEED to stop using the word "journalist" or any variation thereof to describe the writers here, thank you. (this is not aimed at anyone in particular...well maybe the writers on GR, but not a poster) To the writers, and I use that term loosely; This is bad even for you guys, and yeah I get it, you want the hits on the site, and the comments and stuff, but isn't it a tad pretentious to do this?
  • oneshotfinch - March 23, 2012 11:32 a.m.

    How is this situation different from when Bethesda decided to make Broken Steel DLC to change an ending full of plot holes? Dave unless you've played the ending and understand how much of a disservice it does not to the fans but to Bioware themselves and their universe you haven't got much leverage on the matter. I can't believe Forbes of all places has been the only website to handle this reasonably.
  • Hydr0ponicK - March 23, 2012 12:14 p.m.

    No doubt, Forbes has been the only place to find a reasonable conversation on this topic..sad real
  • Technomancer - March 23, 2012 11:31 a.m.

    For the record, all but 1 or 2 of the writers that worked on Mass Effect 1 left the studio by the time Mass Effect 3 was made.
  • FlyinHawaiian13 - March 23, 2012 11:30 a.m.

    Some of your points would work for most games, but not a game that has stressed personal choice like this. We're talking three 40+ hour games, with one continuing narrative and hundreds of choices. How many other games have done that? It's like a funnel. We started with all this space to make decisions and openness and then at the end it all got shoved into the same place. Three identical endings, and honestly no idea how the effects of our decisions played out. Honestly if they change it it would be the best thing for gaming in years. Maybe big companies would finally realize how important gamers are to the whole process. Remember when Nintendo abandoned us for the casual market? Ignoring us now would be the same thing.
  • UncleKabuki - March 23, 2012 11:30 a.m.

    I have been following this site since the Cheat Planet days, and I hardly ever use this account, but I felt compelled to use it now to say that I have never really been quite this disappointed in you guys. I'm not really mad even, just disappointed. "I don’t know what the ending of Mass Effect 3 entails, and I don’t care. I haven’t even played Mass Effect 3 yet. Hell, I’m still working through the first one at the moment..." That definitely explains the quality of the article to me. I really don't understand why all of the game journalism sites are so quick to defend Bioware when they broke promises to their closest fans.
  • Zeipher - March 23, 2012 11:29 a.m.

    Hahahahaha how did Gamesradar think this article would be okay? An argument in virtue of the medium? Hahahaha "I know I have never seen this work of art, have nothing invested in it emotionally or financially, and have devoted no time or mental ability towards the foreshadowing of its conclusion, but let me tell all of you critics why you're full of shit" Bioware being too big to fail isn't going to appease the angry. Arguing that fans should be "thankful" for anything they get, isn't going to appease the angry. What a scar upon a great series, but they can't blame anyone except themselves.
  • cole1114 - March 23, 2012 11:28 a.m.

    I gave up on Star Wars because it was awful. Same reason I'm giving up on Bioware: Mass Effect 3's ending is awful in every conceivable way. It is so broken, makes so little sense, and is so riddled with plot holes that it has directly affected the replayability of the first two games. To make my point clear: Mass Effect 3's ending is so bad it makes other games less fun. It completely drops all themes, introduces plot holes so big that the entire Turian fleet could fly right through (and the Turian fleet is the biggest Council fleet!) at the same time, the art and graphics of the final conversation are noticeably worse than the rest of the game, and the writing is approximate to a Jim Sterling article: annoying and brain-breakingly bad. If you had played through all three games, you would understand. I've got hundreds of hours, and no closure. Mass Effect 3, the finale of the series, ended on a bad cliff-hanger and a demand to buy more DLC. That's why I've joined the "How Mass Effect Should Have Ended" project. We're setting up a website where you upload your Mass Effect 3 save data, and get a new ending and Dragon Age style epilogue. And I promise all of you, we won't be lazy. Not like Bioware.
  • HereComesTheHypeTrainCHOOCHOO - March 23, 2012 11:26 a.m.

    Bioware can do absolutely no wrong in the eyes of the gaming media, for some purpose I can't fathom. First we have almost universally glowing reviews that praise the whole game, putrid ending and all. Maybe all of those reviewers did love the ending and many Mass Effect fans who actually shelled out their own money for the game didn't like it but it just illustrates the disconnect between the "entitled" (hate that word) reviewers and their supposed customers, namely us readers. So the gaming media are bashing fans who want some closure after the Mass Effect 3 ending. How about we get a few huge plot holes paved over, wadda ya say Bioware? In comes the gaming media who shout us down and yell "art!" and what a bad precedent this would set, totally ignoring the many precedents set in the gaming industry by changed endings already. Undying support for publishers/developers from gaming media in this case. Next we get the possibility of Bioware offering clarity to the endings and now we get the same gaming media people bitching at us fans that we are somehow "forcing" Bioware to do this. It is Bioware's choice whether to make a change or addition to the shitty ending or not. Don't blame us gamers for voicing our opinion after having ponied up the cash to actually play and finish the game. Finally we get the gaming media lashing out at us fans by saying it will be OUR fault if Bioware charges for the true ending. Think of it, if Bioware does nothing then we fans are entitled whiners, if Bioware adds clarity to the current endings we are ruining gaming, if Bioware charges for a new ending (even if it was their plan all along to do so) then we are killing the industry. Who do these gaming media guys think that they are that their readership is always, always wrong in their eyes? Why do they always criticize us yet consistently treat their publisher overlords with kid gloves? Is is some attempt to avoid pissing off a potential employer down the road since so many game journalists go on to work for publishers in an official capacity down the road? Are they scared of rocking the boat by rating games as they should be instead of the 7 to 10 scale that seems popular these days? Or have they just completely lost touch with a good portion of their readership and deserve to wither away until a better, more reader-friendly system comes along to inform us about the gaming industry? I think the problem may be that game journalists don't see themselves as covering the industry, they foolishly see themselves as a part of the industry, when that clearly is not the case. They do us nor themselves any favors with that kind of outlook.

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