Saturday, 19 May 2012

Mass Effect 3: "Not Bad, For A Human"

Lance Henrikson talks about the extended Mass Effect 3 Ending DLC in the works. I'm surprised, since I'd heard they weren't going to bring back any of the voice cast for it. Tricia Helfer's coming back for it too, apparently.

This is going to be another addition to my series of rants about why the Mass Effect 3 ending is garbage, but it's also an excuse to gush about Lance Henrikson. What can I say? The man's paid his dues in a cruel line of work, and brought a lot to science-fiction. And as Alien Vs. Predator showed us, he can make the most out of crap. "Not bad, for a human."

But he's got his work cut out for him here.

I must say, they've done a remarkable job at hiding how bad they fucked up from him. The ending isn't disappointing because it's "sad", or because the player character dies. Both of those things could have worked in its favour. The hero need not win. It might have been more poignant to admit that sometimes you lose the war.

No, it's bad because it is the most brainless 5 minutes in video game history. For comparison, "Duke Nukem Forever" is the game where you can pick up a turd and throw it at your enemies. Hearing the starchild tell me robots have to kill everyone so we won't be killed by robots, and having Shepard just accept that like a drooling nitwit is worse. The abruptness was just the last twist of the knife.

...But despite everything, I AM cautiously optimistic about this.

Let me make it clear that I believe a bad ending can be saved with a thorough epilogue. I wasn't much of a fan of Return of the King(the movie), but the last 30 minutes validate the entire trilogy. Even though the nonsense was still there in the back of my head, that wasn't the last impression I was left with. It's not right, but it's something I can tolerate in fiction.

And that's what ME3 lacked: an epilogue. It just puttered out at the critical moment of the franchise. It was like watching the lead car run out of gas in front of the finish line, because their sponsors cut corners.

I guess what I'm saying is: The DLC should make it so Bishop saves Earth, by impressing the Reapers with that cool knife trick.



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