An End Once And For All

Now this is old news and if you do not like discussing the ending of Mass Effect, please do us all a favor and do not continue reading then complain that the subject has been beaten to death.

Mass Effect is the greatest story the media of video games has to offer. The amount of information presented to the player that provides the lore to the game is unparalleled. The amount of time put into the personality, background, and overall like-ability of every character in the series makes even the most hardened of men care about their fate. The story consumes the player and makes it feel as though they are truly apart of the narrative. The tale of Commander Shepard is an epic one, used in both the current meaning of amazing and the Greek form of a tale. Unfortunately in a sense, the latter can be said about the series as a whole as well.

Mass Effect 3, the last installment of the Mass Effect series, concluded one of the greatest stories of all time. Unfortunately it didn’t end like the one of the most incredible stories ever told. The ending was surrounded in so much controversy that even the Penn State athletic department would feel sorry for Bioware.

For any of you who have not played the series, the best comparison I’ve ever heard to this ending was: Imagine in Harry Potter that the real enemy wasn’t Voldemort, the true mastermind behind all that evil was Dudley. But that’s not all, the only way to stop Dudley is for Harry to destroy the magical world. And to top icing on the cake, every character you’ve come to know is probably dead (Ron, Hermione, George, Fred, etc..).

Yeah, it was that bad. The things that I explained earlier that made Mass Effect great were completely abandoned in the final moments of the game, the most important moment in the series. They lost narrative coherence, continuity, and the main character lost the things that made him great. Everything you know about the Reapers seemed to be uprooted in the final moments of the game with the introduction of the “AI Star-Child”. The continuity of the story seemed to be lost when some characters magically appeared on the Normandy or the Citadel. Shepard also seemingly loses the ability to gather information to make an informed decision. Much of the controversy that surrounded it had to do with players making the most important decision of the series near-blind.  They completely destroyed the lore of the series in the final moments of the game as well with the destruction of the Mass Relays.

All of this could have been forgiven if Bioware did what they said they were going to do from the beginning, allow decisions that were made through out the series change the outcome of the ending, an interactive ending that told YOUR story. They always talked about how Commander Shepard’s story is the player’s story. Hell they even said it wouldn’t even be a simple A, B, C choice. (Actually you’re right it was Red, Blue, Green). Part of the problem had to do with the great expectations Bioware fed their audience.

It was bad, but that’s not what this post is about.

Bioware heard our complaints and acted, something people do not give them enough credit for. They accepted that the ending wasn’t satisfactory and tried to fix it. They didn’t owe the fans anything, they could have left the game as is. Yet they manned up and took responsibility. Hell, who really knows if it was even their fault? One only has to look at the destruction EA causes wherever they go to see that there may have been a bigger bully rushing/changing the project. In any case though they changed the ending with the extended cut DLC.

The extended cut fixed many of the things previously stated – narrative coherence, plot holes, destruction of lore, too many questions, not enough closure, and so on. They fixed it, and while some may argue that the concept of the ending wasn’t well thought out (I would be one), one can at least accept the new ending presented. If this had been the ending they had originally presented to us many would have not have been mad and the public outrage would have never of happened. In fact most would have been content with the ending and it probably would have been acclaimed to be one of the greatest finishes in gaming history.

There was too much right in this series for it to go that horribly wrong in the end. I’m glad they came out with the extended cut DLC, and although the bitter taste from the original ending still lingers, I can truly be happy with the ending and can move on with gaming.

What do you guys think? Did you like the series? What about the endings-original/extended? What were your favorite moments of the series?

Side Note: the music to the ending was spectacular in both endings. Original= http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5JvbD2Zc9I Extended = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLxv_g_zQkY

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Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale

Big in news lately has been a new Super-Smash Brothers-esque game set to release on the Playstation 3 on October 23 called Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale. Left with speculating based on only a few films online it seems to have an eerily similar design and gameplay to that of the Super Smash Bros series (2D levels, interactive background, outrageous animation to simple moves, and cool special moves available to each characters).

The current characters have been plucked from different series for this game and include: Big Daddies from the Bioshock series, Colonel Mael Radec from the Killzone series, Fat Princess from Fat Princess, Kratos from the God of War series, Heihachi Mishima from Tekken, Nathan Drake from the Uncharted series, PaRappa from the PaRappa the Rapper series, Sly Cooper from the Sly Cooper series, Sweet Tooth from the Twisted Metal series, and Toro (Japanese mascot for Playstation). Two characters unconfirmed but highly likely to be playable characters: Snake from the Metal Gear Solid series, and Cole MacGrath from the Infamous series. There is also other rumors include: Ezio from Assassins Creed, Ratchet from Ratchet and Clank, Sackboy from Little Big Planet, and James Bond.

This is a wide range of characters and touches base with a wide range of gamers. It’s great in getting everyone involved with this game, along with the homey feeling of the eerily similar game play to Super Smash Brothers this game is bound to be a huge success. There are some characters I do and don’t like in the game.

Big Daddies- Love it. Each characters abilities are tailored to what they’re like in their own games. Having a big bruiser our there in a Big Daddy is sure to please anyone who wants to lay down powerful blows. It adds diversity to the game seeing as he seems to be alone in the “Big Bruiser” type role.

Fat Princess- Eh. It helps expand the game to wider range of players so that’s a positive. Her moves seem artificial. Like in the way in Super Smash Bros when DK plays the bongos it does damage. Doesn’t really make sense. I probably won’t be using her much but I’m not against having her included.

Colonel Mael Radec- Not a fan. He doesn’t really add much to the game other than the sniper rifle he seems to be carrying around everywhere. His moves seem unimaginative and his suit of armor isn’t even cool compared to some of the other characters.

Kratos- Love it. The fighting mechanics in the God of War series are so good its hard to imagine that fans of the series won’t be a little of upset with the downgrade but I’m excited they added him. He has such a combination of strength and speed it seems like he probably should be unfair to play with. Yet remember that God of War was almost strictly a brawler so he may have a disadvantage from range.

Sly Cooper- Like it. Bringing back a fan favorite. He could be cool to play with, using some type of stealth in the game. Yet he seems to be at such a disadvantage it may make me question how a Big Daddy just got K.O.ed by a punch from Sly.

PaRappa- Hate it. Who even played those games honestly? I never even heard of them before I looked it up when I first saw the previews. He’ll use weird moves like rapping and skateboarding which I hate. He doesn’t offer much either. No, just no. Wasting space for another cooler, character to use.

Heihachi Mashimi- No. If I wanted to play Tekken, I’d play Tekken. He doesn’t bring anything new to the table. Classical fighter, uses a combination of strength and speed. Space waster. Old character used in similar game. Yawn…

Sweet Tooth- I never played the Twisted Metal series but I’m going to have to say yes. His crazy personality combined with that creepy clown face add some to the series. His obsession with fire seems like it could be cool and I want to see this ice cream truck used some how.

Nathan Drake- Eh. I really like the Uncharted series but Nathan just doesn’t really add much. No special powers, no insane abilities. Unfortunately he probably is a space waster.

Toro- I personally am opposed, but that’s probably not the case if you went to Japan. He could be kind of cool but I’d definitely rather have a similar character to him that I know, like Sackboy.

Snake- For all intents and purposes he’s in the game. Like it. Personally never played Metal Gear Solid series. But it is considered to be one of the best game series of all time. If it’s that good he’ll definitely have some cool moves so Snake gets the thumbs up.

Cole MacGrath- Love it. I only played the first inFAMOUS but I’m already pumped for his electrical moves. Brings something new to the table. To me Cole personally is a little bit of a flat character but his moves make up for it.

Ezio- Please be in the game, please be in the game. This guy would be so hype jumping from platforms stabbing people. He might not bring something insanely new to the table but he seems to be on a completely different level then all the previous characters for agility so that could be cool.

Sackboy- As much as I’ve been hating on the younger audience characters i love Sackboy. He never really brawls or fights anything in Little Big Planet, so it’ll be interesting to see what he does. It will also be awesome to see that little creepy stitched in smile after he K.O.’s someone.

James Bond- No. He’s not really a game character. Doesn’t bring much new to the table. Would be space waster.

Ratchet- Never played Ratchet and Clank so undecided here.

Players I would like to see

Commander Shepard- Biotics could a nice addition to the game. Along with help from some of his squad in his power moves. He makes for an interesting character. Also the reapers shooting a giant laser into the game would be a nice interactive background.

Chimeran Hybrid- His moves probably wouldn’t bring much new to the table but his look will help create diversity. Plus Resistance is a Playstation exclusive so give the nod to those guys.

Deathclaw- This would be interesting. Give something to rival Kratos’ brawling ability. No special powers, just strength and speed.

The Dohvakiin- Thu’ums would be awesome to use in gameplay. Very unlikely though because each character in Skyrim is unique to the player. An interactive background with dragons would be a nice touch as well.

Player I DO NOT want to see

Isaac Clarke- Hated Dead Space series. No attachment to what’s going on, just run around and do this type of thing. Anyway, doesn’t bring anything unique to table. Rumored to be in it, will be disappointed if he is.

Anyone from COD, Battlefield, or Medal of Honor- No explanation needed

So what do you guys think? Will you be getting the game? What do you think of the current and rumored characters? Also let me know what characters you guys want and why.

Mission

I’m a gamer and I love having discussions about gaming. I’m also an aspiring game writer so part of starting this blog is to help advance my writing skills. Mostly I’m doing this because I love gaming though.

My goal is to create a blog that is exactly what my blog is called, All About Gamers. This is about keeping gamers up to date on current news, trends, products, and ideas in the gaming world. Hopefully the opinions on here will lead to some great discussions, so please feel free to comment on any post. Discussion is very welcome.

I’ll try to get back to emails/comments as soon as I possibly can as to keep the discussions going. I am going to a be a new college student in the upcoming semester, so academics come first but this is a close second.

Thank you for reading and enjoy.