I finally finished Mass Effect 3. Instead of going over the combat and all that, a large part of Mass Effect's allure is its story line and non-combat portions of the game. As such, I'll be covering my opinions about that today.
---WARNING: MAJOR SPOILERS---
- I particularly enjoyed some of the reunions with old cast members like Wrex, Grunt, Miranda, & Thane Krios. Seeing some of those characters, other die, were poignant and well done.
- Overall, the storytelling was, as usual, quite good. I didn't feel like some of my crew mates had as much of a story as previous Mass Effects, but I can live with that.
- The decisions. Do I pick the Quarians or The Geth? Do I let both survive? Do I betray the Krograns & sabotage the genophage just to get Salarian was support? Good times.
- On the final Earth mission, everything up to the final scene very end was well done. Getting to talk to my crew members one last time brought a little tear to my eye. Taking the fight to earth. Some wicked hard battles (though my XBOX was lagging hard at some points adding to the difficulty!). Even the scene with the Illusive Man & the Admiral Anderson were well done.
- The Mass Effect series has been about choices, and making them to free humanity, and ultimately the other races, from the control of the Reapers. At the very last cut scene, we get this new deus ex machina in the form of a god child who apparently created the Reapers and offers the choice to take control of the reapers, destroy synthetics, or something about a synthetic choice combining the two (I didn't even realize this was a choice on my play thru). There was a glaringly missing choice- frack the choices and let organic life continue to make decisions for themselves. Eschew all of the choices and let all fleet readiness I spent time preparing (for what, I'm not quite sure) to bring the fight to the Reapers. Let us decide fate, not 3 blind choices. Maybe that means we loose the war? Maybe not? But either way, being pigeon holed into those 3 choices is allowing the god child synthetic control biotic life. That seems to fly in the face of everything Shepard has fought and died for over the year.
- I wanted to wander over the the red platform just to see what was over there- once I made it, I was unable to turn around and maybe change my decision. Awesome.
- Unable to save during the final parts. Part of my enjoyment in ME was seeing what happens if I make different choices, so I save frequent. This isn't Heavy Rain- why the need to disable manual saves for so long at the end?
- The reasoning behind creating the Reapers. According the the god child, organics are doomed to be destroyed by creating synthetics that will in the turn on their masters. So to solve that problem...synthetics are created to destroy all organics thereby ensuring that...synthetics destroy organics? BRILLIANT.
- Why was was Joker running away in the final cut scene? I guess maybe EDI or someone told him what was happening to high-tail it out of there (but then what about me having chose to destroy all synthetics?), but still felt like he was fleeing the battle.
- With all the Mass Relays, does this mean all the foreign races- Quarians, Turians, etc, are going to try to live on a decimated Earth? Is our solar system even hospitable to their living?
- What the frack was the point of my fleet readiness? And how do I get it above 50%? By playing multi-player and online components? Screw that- I can't get past 50% just because I only want to play the single player mode or not download DLC? Lame.
- Closure. Closure to a epic trilogy many of us has played over the years and spent 100+ hours playing. When all hell breaks loose with the mass relays, I just didn't feel like their was closure. Seeing Joker run away or a future story about The Shepard, closure is not.
Oh wait, there was closure: Get ready to purchase more DLC!!!
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my Mass Effect 3 playthrough, and the entire Mass Effect trilogy. While I feel the ending definitely leaves something to be desired, that doesn't diminish the epic awesomeness the 3 games as a whole are.