|Because FemShep is more badass.|
That said, desecrating Mass Effect 3 because of its ending is vile and incompetent thinking, and demeaning BioWare's efforts. It might not have the greatest ending, but that shouldn't overshadow what is an excellent take on a galactic society on the precipice of collapse.
The Reapers cometh and Shepard taketh the battle to them. It's felt immediately -- within the opening cutscene in fact -- and days are darkened as the Reapers descend to Earth's surface. Mass Effect 3 concerns the ultimate fight for survival, a fight not without struggle. The war defines each race, and utilizing various bargaining chips BioWare does an incredible job at highlighting the unique political intricacies of every species in Citadel space.
Reemerging characters and recurring storylines reaffirm that sense of individuality as a thousand variables or more, over three games, give a completely incomparable experience. Though, the weight of those choices vary greatly. In some cases BioWare remarkably captures the essence of your seemingly simple decision, while others feel needless and never amount to anything concrete. In fact, one notably important decision from Mass Effect does nothing whatsoever (if you want to know which one, please ask in the comments below).
One satisfying aspect is BioWare answering almost every lingering question from the universe, and any fan will know which ones I'm talking about. Particularly, Tali's identity forced quite the unexpected response; anger surrounding the purported use of a modified stock photo caused hysteria, one of many problematic responses from consumers. However, most ongoing conflicts meet their resolution in some format and this gives a resounding feeling of closure.
As is Mass Effect tradition, combat feels comfortable and seamless. Small refinements from Mass Effect 2 are evident, and by including the ability to dive BioWare creates a strategic atmosphere for every battle. The improved melee attack, the Omniblade, makes upfront confrontations surprisingly effective for a game built around cover mechanics. This used in tandem with the Vanguard class is a lethal combination.
Compared to other controversies, the fervor shrouding the multiplayer mode revealed EA's intentions -- of which market the publisher was trying to attract. And to its credit, replicating a Gears 2-esque Horde system but with classes was the proper way to go. Receiving much resentment prior to release, multiplayer feels fully realized and large in scope. Varying enemy types and an assortment of maps (and incoming DLC) guarantees the mode's longevity. The harder difficulties turn from easy massacres to calculated killing sprees, and wrongly estimating the enemy is costly. It goes a long way to pushing the series forward -- whatever the future holds.
Mass Effect 3 was a pleasant surprise. I wasn't expecting a triumphant title given the wide range of expectations, though BioWare splendidly wrapped up the series. Future downloadable content seeks to correct -- or outright change -- the game's ending, unusually befitting for a series targeting player investment. And the developer is right to appease overwhelming demand. A fantastic game nonetheless. Applauded, commended, whatever your word for it; another masterful conclusion from the masters themselves. Jeff out.
P.S. Check back as I review The Walking Dead's season two finale!
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