Mass Effect 3 and DLC's

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Red Hawk

Diamond Member
Jan 1, 2011
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and I should try to hit at least like 4000 readiness, right? I have something like 3800 * 0.9 readiness right now.

Looks like I'm nearing the end.

I'm...sick of the series by now. Kind of feel pressure from myself to just beat the game already. The constant perfection in everyone gets annoying after a while, no? Like, every single person is like barbie-doll perfect.

And then there's like the stupid sappy moments. Then I realized that for mass market games like this, they have to appeal to fans of Creed and Nickelback. Ugh.
I wouldn't call them perfect. James gets up in your face about leaving Earth behind. Ashley or Kaidan have suspicions about your past with Cerberus Liara can be too single-minded and gets carried away in her interactions with Javik, and his response frustrates both of them. But at their core these are good, likeable people. It's a bit of an optimistic view of the future where, when an overwhelming force threatens to wipe out all civilization, the people of Earth and the galaxy on whole stand together. It isn't the time for petty grievances to drive people apart. Also consider that many of the people you interact with are professionals, you can't fault them for acting like it.

Mass Effect 2 was about bringing your allies together and sorting through their issues. In Mass Effect 3, with those issues sorted, the focus is on your allies keeping you strong and facing destruction together.

And what you call "sappy moments" I call giving the game heart.
 

desura

Diamond Member
Mar 22, 2013
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So, thoughts on the ending?

I chose...destroying the Reapers.

Seems to me nonsensical that they are "agents of order" when they're basically big scary zombie dudes. Babylon 5 did it better, where the Vorlons were Angels and the Shadows were scary spiders -- but that's because the Vorlons had altered the races to perceive them as such. It makes not much sense for the Reapers to scare people so much.

Because Bioware relies waayyyy too much on zombie enemies. The Reapers aren't really any different from the bad guys in the Dragon Age games, down to creating their own evil versions of the good guys and not really explaining all that well why they're doing what they are. They're essentially galactic cockroaches, just like the Dragon Age bad guys.

Overall, I have to give the series a big meh.

KOTOR and Jade Empire were superior games. More thoughtful and better stories.
 

Red Hawk

Diamond Member
Jan 1, 2011
3,266
169
106
So, thoughts on the ending?

I chose...destroying the Reapers.

Seems to me nonsensical that they are "agents of order" when they're basically big scary zombie dudes. Babylon 5 did it better, where the Vorlons were Angels and the Shadows were scary spiders -- but that's because the Vorlons had altered the races to perceive them as such. It makes not much sense for the Reapers to scare people so much.

Because Bioware relies waayyyy too much on zombie enemies. The Reapers aren't really any different from the bad guys in the Dragon Age games, down to creating their own evil versions of the good guys and not really explaining all that well why they're doing what they are. They're essentially galactic cockroaches, just like the Dragon Age bad guys.

Overall, I have to give the series a big meh.

KOTOR and Jade Empire were superior games. More thoughtful and better stories.
Sovereign states way back in the first Mass Effect the Reapers set up the galaxy with the mass relays, the Citadel, and various bits of element zero-based technology so that civilizations would develop technology along predictable paths to make them easier for the Reapers to "harvest". But really there's no old legends or stories about the Reapers that make people scared, it's just fact that the Reapers will tear through each faction's fleets like so much tissue paper that makes them scary (to the people in-universe).

The Reapers may employ "zombie" ground troops, but they aren't "zombie dudes" themselves. They're more like eldtritch Cthulu-esque science fiction monstrosities. Their goal is made pretty clear by the end -- they have observed a pattern where "the created always rebel against their creators" so they reset the galaxy by wiping out all advanced life every 50,000 years or so. That may sound a bit stupid, and indeed it is fundamentally flawed. But there's a point I don't think they ever state which I think would make a bit more sense -- they periodically wipe out advanced life to prevent some life from arising with the capability to wipe out all life and no inhibitions from doing so. They justify wiping out races by creating Reapers out of the races' genetic materials, thus "preserving" them.

I will admit that the Reaper ground forces aren't all that original; they're just a spin on the "mutant zombie army" that's been done before, as you said, in Dragon Age, but also in Halo with the Flood. Banshees are still pretty damn freaky, though. Cerberus from a design standpoint are just some standard human bad guys. The geth spice things up a bit -- the most creative geth unit was actually the geth "hopper" which stuck to walls, but it only appeared in the first Mass Effect. I sort of wish the Collectors had made an appearance in Mass Effect 3; they apparently were used by the Reapers in the war, as they are referred to in Codex entries about battles and were later added as an enemy faction in Mass Effect 3's multiplayer.

I haven't played Jade Empire, but I will say that I prefer the Mass Effect series on whole over the first Knights of the Old Republic. You simply have more time to get emotionally invested in the characters -- HK-47 is great and all, but Mass Effect has Garrus, Wrex, Tali, Mordin, etc., etc. The antagonists in Mass Effect are better; Saren is a bit more of a complex villain than Darth Malak, and the Illusive Man is even more so. There are better suspenseful or emotional moments in Mass Effect, particularly in the third.

Also, while Knights of the Old Republic was a great game, I wouldn't call it particularly "thoughtful". It was great because it managed to nail down the classic Star Wars feel and story, and did a good job of developing interesting and likeable characters. But did it do anything truly thoughtful with its themes and messages? No, I don't think it did. I'd say the second Knights of the Old Republic was actually thoughtful, with its speculation on the role of the Jedi, how the galaxy regards the Jedi, what is a Jedi without the Force, what the real difference between the Sith and Jedi is (if there is any), and it didn't resort to cliché answers to any of that.
 

desura

Diamond Member
Mar 22, 2013
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Sovereign states way back in the first Mass Effect the Reapers set up the galaxy with the mass relays, the Citadel, and various bits of element zero-based technology so that civilizations would develop technology along predictable paths to make them easier for the Reapers to "harvest". But really there's no old legends or stories about the Reapers that make people scared, it's just fact that the Reapers will tear through each faction's fleets like so much tissue paper that makes them scary (to the people in-universe).
What I mean is that it would be more interesting if the Reapers had a way of seducing people to assimilate, instead of the forceful method that they use. And like, when you assimilated into the Reapers, you entered into like this heavenly world. Kind of like Bioshock and the little sisters.

Instead...I dunno, it's just not very creative IMO. Another thing that bothers me is how you fly your ship around the galaxy like it's nothing. Like, paddling a canoe is more challenging than piloting the Normandy. I want to see planetary orbital movements and having to time trajectories right to reach planets. I shouldn't be able to fly right through a star like it's nothing.

Just seems like another high production level yet ultimately very shallow cutscene-heavy modern game.
 

darkewaffle

Diamond Member
Oct 7, 2005
8,152
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What I mean is that it would be more interesting if the Reapers had a way of seducing people to assimilate, instead of the forceful method that they use. And like, when you assimilated into the Reapers, you entered into like this heavenly world. Kind of like Bioshock and the little sisters.
They're able to really, it's just much more efficient to simply impose their will on biological creatures than to bother 'persuading' them. But they didn't enslave or indoctrinate or conquer the geth, the geth just see the Reapers as "machine gods", they practically worship them. The reapers are received by the Geth kind of like Cortes is [portrayed to be] received by the Aztecs.

But even then indoctrination isn't just sheer mind control. It's more akin to brainwashing or a devil on one's shoulder, as the targets can't recognize themselves being indoctrinated. They feel as though they're functioning normally, but their decision-making that has that extra whisper in their ear.
 

desura

Diamond Member
Mar 22, 2013
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They're able to really, it's just much more efficient to simply impose their will on biological creatures than to bother 'persuading' them. But they didn't enslave or indoctrinate or conquer the geth, the geth just see the Reapers as "machine gods", they practically worship them. The reapers are received by the Geth kind of like Cortes is [portrayed to be] received by the Aztecs.

But even then indoctrination isn't just sheer mind control. It's more akin to brainwashing or a devil on one's shoulder, as the targets can't recognize themselves being indoctrinated. They feel as though they're functioning normally, but their decision-making that has that extra whisper in their ear.
I wouldn't say that it's efficient at all. The races end up resisting and fighting the reapers. At best, they get some cooperating in hopes of controlling the Reapers. But none really buy into the agenda.

If I were the Reapers, I'd construct some sort of paradise that advanced civilizations would aspire to and use their energies to try to achieve. Would be a lot easier and more pleasant.

But...this is a military-themed video game, and militaries rely on completely unsympathetic enemies (Nazis, Reapers) and stupid simplicity in order to justify using public tax dollars to support their hugeness.

And there is the limit of the big-budget video game medium. Which is why video games will always be severely constrained as works of art. In order to construct high levels of visual fidelity like in Mass Effect, the story/world has to be dumbed down to appeal to the Nickelback and Linkin Park people of the world.
 

darkewaffle

Diamond Member
Oct 7, 2005
8,152
1
81
I wouldn't say that it's efficient at all. The races end up resisting and fighting the reapers. At best, they get some cooperating in hopes of controlling the Reapers. But none really buy into the agenda.

If I were the Reapers, I'd construct some sort of paradise that advanced civilizations would aspire to and use their energies to try to achieve. Would be a lot easier and more pleasant.

But...this is a military-themed video game, and militaries rely on completely unsympathetic enemies (Nazis, Reapers) and stupid simplicity in order to justify using public tax dollars to support their hugeness.

And there is the limit of the big-budget video game medium. Which is why video games will always be severely constrained as works of art. In order to construct high levels of visual fidelity like in Mass Effect, the story/world has to be dumbed down to appeal to the Nickelback and Linkin Park people of the world.
Reapers are powerful, but they're not omnipotent. They can't just indoctrinate the galaxy at will. To become indoctrinated, and individual needs some amount of sustained exposure to Reaper tech. It doesn't mean it's not efficient, only that it has limitations. But few individuals have the force to will to actually resist it when they're subjected to it.

That "paradise" is the Citadel essentially. But you seem to be missing the point of the Reaper's existence at this point by speaking as though they're "providers" or "caretakers". The Citadel is "all part of the plan" to give the cycle's civilizations an intergalactic hub for commerce, culture, politics, etc. And then each Reaper invasion begins by activating the Citadel's relay (aka: Sovereign's mission) which allows the full Reaper fleet access to "Citadel space", they conquer the Citadel and then simply have to 'clean up' the fragmented, panicked remains.
 

desura

Diamond Member
Mar 22, 2013
4,627
129
101
Reapers are powerful, but they're not omnipotent. They can't just indoctrinate the galaxy at will. To become indoctrinated, and individual needs some amount of sustained exposure to Reaper tech. It doesn't mean it's not efficient, only that it has limitations. But few individuals have the force to will to actually resist it when they're subjected to it.

That "paradise" is the Citadel essentially. But you seem to be missing the point of the Reaper's existence at this point by speaking as though they're "providers" or "caretakers". The Citadel is "all part of the plan" to give the cycle's civilizations an intergalactic hub for commerce, culture, politics, etc. And then each Reaper invasion begins by activating the Citadel's relay (aka: Sovereign's mission) which allows the full Reaper fleet access to "Citadel space", they conquer the Citadel and then simply have to 'clean up' the fragmented, panicked remains.
Not really. Heaven isn't heaven if it's shortly followed by a disintegration beam.

Anyways, maybe it's because I"ve experienced far far superior sci-fi that I find Mass Effect really lacking. But Babylon 5, Farscape, and Firefly are all way superior to this video game.
 
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