Mass Effect 3

Discussion in 'Gaming' started by PsychoPere, Dec 10, 2010.

  1. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    We're not trying to say that Shepard shouldn't care about Earth at all. We're just saying that for a series that was able to tell an epic action adventure story that didn't resort to the typical "Aliens attack Earth!" storyline, it deserved a lot better. Heck, having aliens hate humanity was one of the "fake outs" of the original game.

    Focusing so intently on Earth really does the Mass Effect universe a disservice because Earth isn't what makes the Mass Effect universe unique. There are a crap ton of science fiction stories that all have an Earth, and a lot of them involve aliens wanting to invade Earth specifically. The Mass Effect games gave us a science fiction setting where for once, Earth was not the center of the universe where everything had to revolve around it, and humanity wasn't the only race who could get things done. Earth was simply a place, a place you couldn't really visit in the first two games. Treating Earth like that gave Mass Effect the benefit of exploring and developing other alien societies as though they are as capable of doing great things as we are. I never looked at Shepard being the hero because she was a human. I looked at her being the hero who just happened to be human.
     
  2. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't disagree with that sentiment, I think the decision to have the Reapers focus their attention on humans in ME2 was lame and formulaic. However, I do disagree that ME3 focused too much on Earth, that was mostly a problem with the marketing and not the game itself. Most of the game was spent travelling the galaxy to Reaper or Cerberus hit worlds that weren't Earth, including the homeworlds of most of the main species. And whenever you went to the Citadel it was filled with refugees who had stories about the devastation being inflicted across the galaxy. Earth wasn't even the hardest-hit world, the Batarians took the brunt of the invasion. It just so happened that for stupid story reasons, ones that go back to ME2, that the final battle took place at Earth.
     
  3. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    Except the parts where Shepard constantly dreams of being on Earth chasing a human child we do not know and going on and on about how leaving Earth behind was one of the hardest things she's ever had to do. Despite the game giving you moments of helping other races out, it still beats you over the head that it's all about saving the Earth in the end. That is why the kid keeps popping up (Because you left humanity behind) and why Anderson is still there (Because you left a well liked character behind).

    And some missions where you're supposed to help other species out usually winds up being just a trip to a planet, quick scan, and your done. That is the entire role of the Elcor race in a nut shell.

    Sure, the Batarians got hit hard, but that's mostly discussed in dialogue and never actually seen. Heck, unless you've played the previous game with "The Arrival" DLC, the Batarians don't really have much of a presence in the game. It's also kind of hard to say that losing their world is on the same level as Earth when Shepard was there when the invasion began, leaves behind her friends, witnesses innocents dying all around her and even having renowned film composer Clint Mansell compose only one piece of music for the entire game called "Leaving Earth".

    And as I mentioned earlier, thanks to that stupid story telling, Earth is now officially the center of the universe since the Citadel now resides in Earth's orbit. I seriously doubt that aliens will be happy that this once neutral station controlled by a council of multiple alien races is now controlled by humanity.
     
  4. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    At least until they can move the thing back, you know the very large space station that the Reapers could move probably because they have a lot of dreadnaught sized ships that don't need discharge their drive cores (because I don't think a Mass Relay can move something that big) and are more powerful than anything the other races have and even then relatively they didn't move it that far.
     
  5. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    Judging by some of the endings...

    [​IMG]

    moving the Citadel seems highly unlikely.
     
  6. Reverend

    Reverend Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Only time will tell if the Citadel continues to be of any long term relevance in inter-species relations.

    The status-quo has been smashed, all the major homeworlds have been devastated, galactic commerce and trade would have been knocked all the way back to the barter system and there are likely billions if not trillions of displaced refugees now wandering the galaxy.

    If the set the next game after ME3 then I'd fully expect the galaxy to be a very different place than we're used to. The old guard council race will have essentially lost their power base, the Batarians will have replaced the quarians as the homeless wanderers of the galaxy, a lot of minor or previously unknown races will have rushed to carve out their own little empires out of the vacuum and I suspect some *very* old races will start to come out of the woodwork now that the reapers are no longer reaping and they have no reason to hide anymore.

    I suspect it's going to be a lot more like the wild west out there. Vast, lawless, full of the unknown, with all the danger and opportunity that comes with it. In such a galaxy the Citadel could either become the last shining Citadel of galactic civilization, or a relic who's time has come and gone. Maybe both.
     
  7. ATimson

    ATimson Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I can't imagine them doing a post-ME3 game. Since Bioware refuses to lock out content based on your choices in prior games, that means they'd need to either not use the Quarians, Geth, or Krogan; or annoy everybody when they ignore what happened in ME3.
     
  8. Reverend

    Reverend Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Do they? Last I checked cutting Leliana's head off after corrupting the sacred ashes doesn't stop her showing up in Kirkwall years later. Twice.

    It really doesn't matter which race you think is "dead", there's always a way around it. Wiped out the quarians? No matter, as it turns out, one single ship survived after all. Didn't cure the genophage? Turns out a handful managed to naturally adapt a second time and this time the salarians weren't in a position to correct for it. Well then what about thr Geth? Oh that's easy. They planned ahead and left behind a dormant backup server and a bunch of inactive platforms out in deep space, well away from the relay network. Apparently they'd planned on pulling a Jaavik and survive into the next cycle. Think EDI is dead? Think again. ;)

    The only thing that would present something of a problem would be the synthesis ending. Even there you can just hand-wave that the green circuit patterns faded after a while and the remaining reapers left for places unknown just as soon as the rebuilding was done. The differences between organics and synthetics may be done, but it doesn't stop the bio-synthetics from killing each other.

    A couple centuries is all you need to make any consequences merely cosmetic. This is why it's called the "illusion of choice."
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2014
  9. Skywalker

    Skywalker Admiral Admiral

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    I don't think BioWare is above retconning previously open-ended choices in order to serve their story goals. Just look at what they did with Revan and the Exile in the backstory for The Old Republic. ;)
     
  10. -Brett-

    -Brett- Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't think they'd have to resort to giving Shepard a "canon" sex or love interest, like they did Revan. But yeah, I could see them deciding that "destroy" is the correct ending. Or retconning a whole new ending for ME3 onto ME4's backstory.

    Regardless, prequels are inherently bad, and this series is on thin ice as it is. I think forward is about the only direction they can go.
     
  11. Reverend

    Reverend Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    To be fair I suspect the thing with Revan and the Exile was more Lucasarts doing than Bioware or Obsidian's. By tradition I think the "light side" endings to most of their games that have such things are the ones considered canon. That is whatever passes for canon in the Expanded Universe.

    Regardless, Shepard's gender, background and who she or he diddled is hardly likely to come up much. In DA2 the Warden was mentioned half a dozen times or more and I'm pretty sure gender pronouns were only used a few times and race referred to once in passing.

    None of which would make it difficult to write a Mass Effect story set centuries after Shepard died. They just have to keep an eye on their word budget and work around it for the most part. They've already done some of the legwork with that "stargazers" epilogue by establishing that in the indeterminate future, Shepard will just be referred to as "The Shepard" and most of the details are "lost in time". That last part is more credible than you might think when you consider that no matter the ending choice, civilization just fell. When that happens, accurate record keeping and the preservation of old documents tends not the be a priority for a while.

    Of course logically all one need to in theory is ask a Geth (if they're still around) as it's a fair bet they'd remember everything they ever knew of Shepard, but that's neither here nor there. ;)
     
  12. Rincewiend

    Rincewiend Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Time can make real stories into myths...
    Atleast that is one future presented at the end of Assasin's Creed 3...
     
  13. SPCTRE

    SPCTRE Badass Admiral

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    That's one of my few issues with Mass Effect 2. The Reapers basing their next evolutionary step on humanity? Ugh.

    The original Mass Effect did such a great job of conveying the wonder and awe of a mature, diverse galactic civilization in which humankind still had to find its place.

    So refreshingly different from, say, the human-centric UFP in Star Trek despite the similarities in other areas of the fiction.
     
  14. Reverend

    Reverend Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Humanity wasn't to be their "next evolutionary step", just the next race selected for preservation in reaper dreadnought form. What criteria they used for this is a bit vague, but I think it has to do with adaptability and diversity. By that logic though, it's possible that in the last cycle it wasn't actually the protheans that got liquefied since those buggers came across as very culturally rigid.
     
  15. SPCTRE

    SPCTRE Badass Admiral

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    Admittedly, "evolutionary step" was poor wording on my part.

    Still, besides the fact that the Terminator Baby of Doom (tm) was more than a bit silly looking, it certainly smacked of Human exceptionalism to me - which is to say, my underlying point still stands.
     
  16. Reverend

    Reverend Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't disagree, but I can't say that it bothered me terribly. Part of the point of sci-fi is to explore the nature of humanity and ask what, if anything defines human nature as a whole, often via allegory. A common way to do that is to break human nature down into it's component parts and give an exaggerated sets of those traits to fictional alien species.

    Star Trek did this allot, which is partly why a lot of the alien cultures come off as monolithic (eg: Vulcans = the rational mind & emotional repression. Klingons = violence, cunning & personal honor).

    In that case I think Trek's answer was that humanity is defined by the desire to ask questions, to explore and the capacity to "leap beyone logic". Whereas in B5 I think the central idea was "humans build communities", that we can take many disparate ideas, beliefs and cultures and make them work together.

    For Mass Effect it seems as though they're saying that humanity is exceptionally adaptable. Darwinism incarnate if you will. Of course none of these arguments are right or wrong. The point is to consider and meditate on the concepts.

    So yeah, human's being "special" in ME didn't stick in my craw as it's in a very narrowly defined sense and we're otherwise shown as being far from perfect and by no means "better" than any other race. It just so happens that we fit a set of criteria a billion year old AI decided make a race worthy of preservation before it wipes the slate clean again.

    If humans were show to be naturally "superior" to all other races in some tangible way, then yeah, that would have irked me.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2014
  17. SPCTRE

    SPCTRE Badass Admiral

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    ^ If you put it like that, it makes the whole thing seem a lot less offensive, for sure.

    I just can't help but feel a distinct pang of disappointment after Mass Effect 1's great job of setting up a universe that seemed both familiar and different in that regard.

    Oh well. I don't want to come across too negative here. It's still one of my favorite SciFi franchises of all time, across all types of media.
     
  18. The Squire of Gothos

    The Squire of Gothos Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I thought that after a few harvests the resources available to allow for creation of AI races that the Reapers wanted to stop war with would be spent or dispersed too much.

    Ah well, the fun I had elsewhere in ME 2 and 3 made up for the :vulcan: and :confused: from some of the plot.
     
  19. Skywalker

    Skywalker Admiral Admiral

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    While I agree that ME1 did very well in setting up a new sci-fi universe that seemed different from the norm (the norm being one where humans are already either the most dominant race in the galaxy, or at least one of the most dominant), there were hints of human exceptionalism even there. All throughout the game we encounter aliens talking about how quickly humans have embraced mass effect technology, how quickly they've spread out and how powerful they've already become in just the 30+ years since they even discovered the mass relays. (Don't get me started on that last bit, by the way; I think humans becoming so big and bad in thirty years is freaking ridiculous.)

    Then they talk about how it normally takes centuries for a species to build up enough power and influence to earn a seat on the Council, yet humanity has earned one by the end of ME1. Again, far faster than any other species has ever done so before.

    The Humans Are Special trope didn't start to become really blatant until ME2 and especially ME3, but the seeds of it were already present in ME1.
     
  20. SPCTRE

    SPCTRE Badass Admiral

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    ^ True, although the context in which "Mankind being different" was portrayed was interesting - I mean, in being these bully-ish kind of reckless upstarts, humanity came across to the galactic community as kind of a bunch of dicks.

    I liked that.

    My first (Paragon) Shepard basically set out on a quest to improve humanity's reputation, which up to that point, was kinda shitty. ;)
     

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