Inklings: a tumblelog

Thoughts on the Mass Effect 3 Extended Cut DLC

I don’t generally post about gaming here, but I think for this I’m going to break that unwritten rule.

I wasn’t happy with it, but that’s to be expected given I consider everything after the bit with Anderson and Shepard sitting down together as being some weird fever dream brought on by a dodgy pizza. That said, I wouldn’t say it doesn’t fix anything.

For instance, they gave Joker’s actions some context. Without that context, the bit with him piloting the ship just came out of nowhere and so made no sense.

The retcon on the effect of the ‘space magic’ on the mass effect relays was also an improvement and meant there was at least some chance of the massed fleets being able to get home without starving to death. After all, even the Quarians are going to have an interesting time of it even with conventional FTL still being in play and they at least have the facilities to keep themselves fed. So yeah, the Charon relay and the others would have to have been fixed pretty damned quickly before things went to pot.

The Synthesis ending actually got worse. It was nonsense to begin with, but… oh, I don’t know where to start with that. It’s almost a gainax ending.

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The Control ending was no worse. At least it gave some context to the consequences of what Shepard was doing, even if it turned Shepard into a total Mary Sue.

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There are only two endings that had any weight: the Refusal ending and the Destruction ending. At least in both of those, especially the former, Shepard didn’t have a total personality change.

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The disappointing thing about the Refusal ending is that EMS had no consequence as to the outcome; it ought to have been possible, with high enough EMS, to get a ‘good’ ending, by which I mean one where heavy losses are inflicted by the Reapers and Shepard likely dies, but the Fleet just manages to scrape a true victory. With a slightly lower EMS, the victory would be Pyrrhic and while the Reapers would be defeated, it would come at the cost of the near-total devastation of galactic civilisation. Too low, and the Reapers win. These two final endings would’ve fit well with what we got for the actual Refusal ending sequence in the DLC.

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The Destruction ending was more or less the same, albeit with the improvements mentioned above.

Don’t get me wrong: it’s still a poor ending, but those problems were always going to be there unless they completely scrapped the star-child nonsense altogether. That said, the whole thing was an improvement, even if they dropped the ball on the possibilities for improvement that the Refusal ending gave.