The official Mass Effect 2 haters guide to Mass Effect 3

Title The official Mass Effect 2 haters guide to Mass Effect 3
Author Tom Chick
Posted in Features
When March 6, 2012

Two years ago, I wrote up Mass Effect 2 as a list of ten things gone terribly wrong. I dismissed it as "a confused attempt to streamline an RPG, flesh out a shooter, cram a story between space dungeons, and pick up the loose ends from the first game"..

Read the full article

Still no ship to ship combat? That's one thing I really wanted them to add.

That's what "spin-offs" are for. ;-)

You keep saying 'he.' Shepherd is a woman. I think you played the wrong game.

Thanks for this. I am slightly less ambivalent about picking this game up now. I LOVED ME1, played it through at least 6 times, I've never done that with a game before. ME2, hated it. For a lot of the same reasons you've written about here. I hope I enjoy ME3 as you did.

Well mabye not ship to ship, but the space travel interface couldve been, no shouldve been more interactive, like how about flying the goddamn ship (yeah, yeah I know the captain doesnt control the ship, Joker does. But this is ridiculous)

One does not simply like ME2!

I want to play this. I really want to, just to finish what I've started, but my saves from the previous two games are on my 360, which is attached to a crappy old SD big-screen cube. I just recently built a stonking great PC with a nice monitor, and I've found I can't go back to playing on the console (except for Dark Souls, because there's no other option, I just must play DS).

So, to play ME3, I'll have to get BOTH the previous games on pc and play them through again. (No, I'll not download some save file, that wouldn't be my story).

Yes, I'm aware it's a crazy problem, but I am who i am. Sigh.

"And whereas it used to remind me of something you would use to core an
apple, now I can’t help but look at it and think of a vacuum cleaner

The hallmark of true progress.

Wow, on Metacritic review score 94 and user score 2.2

The obvious interpretation would be that most/all reviewers are corrupt and Bioware/EA bribed them all to assign high scores, but Tom generally writes genuine reviews and seems to at least somewhat like the game, so I'm confused.

What gives?

Is the game a pile of crap as the (generally more reliable) user score would indicate, or not?

Oh good, it's one of those.

I will often trust user scores more than the possibly purchased opinions of pro reviewers. However, as of this morning, the users SHOULD have had their copies of the game for less than twelve hours. User reviews right now must either be tainted by a lack of time with the game, sleep deprivation, or the ugly entitlement of a filthy thief.

I didn't look too hard at the reviews, but given how many of them were "Day one paid DLC, 0 out of 10!" or "There are gay men in this game, 0 out of 10!" I do not believe the user score comes even close to being something I'd want to pay any attention to.

I had my problems with ME2, so I appreciate the comparison piece. All in all it sounds quite promising, but I'm deeply concerned about the issue outlined in this recent RPS piece:

Multiplayer being required (or virtually so) to get the better endings in the SP game is a pretty serious dealbreaker for me. Is this accurate? If so, I dearly hope they change it, especially considering EA's penchant for arbitrarily terminating MP services whenever they decide they want to do so.

Don't you even know that (ignoring that you called him/her shepherd when it is Sheppard) you can choose the gender of Sheppard and almost everything else about him/her?

It's not right. All of the endings can be obtained without playing a single second of multiplayer. Multiplayer just gives you another way to get the better endings without doing the more grindy quests,

Uhh, from that article it appears that RPS is 100% right, and the game punishes you for not playing MP:

"I said I did all the ‘proper’ quests I could find – if you want to
maximise your War Assets without playing multiplayer, you’ll have to do
the others. The only quests I had left were ones to scour certain
systems for planets that aren’t marked on your map, scan them, then fire
a probe and return to the Citadel. Even compared to Mass Effect 2′s
resource-scanning, these are dull."

Eek. I thought I had it wrong, so I double-checked...with the spelling in the article.

But yeah, I'm aware and was not making a serious criticism.

He specifically says he didn't do everything he could. If multiplayer hadn't been included in the game in any way he still wouldn't have gotten the best ending. The only way "the game punishes you for not playing multiplayer" is true is if it is impossible to get the best ending without playing it. As it stands it just requires you do things you maybe don't want to. Exactly like Mass Effect 2. I wish that wasn't the case, but it's hardly punishment.

I doubt very much that the design would be as it is without MP having been included. Planet scanning was universally loathed in the second game, its inclusion here as an "alternative" to playing co-op is pretty obviously intended to force people to play EA's microtransaction-rich multiplayer mode if they want a good ending.

Don't get me wrong, it's clever to include an "alternative" that's so brain-meltingly tedious you can be confident only a tiny minority will use it. EA gets to claim that, techncially, MP is optional while reaping all the benefits of a design that functionally requires it.

The article you linked refers to this design as "seedy" and "manipulative" and I can only agree.