For those who weren’t able to make it to PAX 2012 in order to be at the Mass Effect 3 panel – held on April 6 – yourself, and were disappointed there weren’t any live streams of the panel, here’s a recap of some of the important details surrounding the Mass Effect 3 ending extended cut, the fanmade Mass Effect 3 indoctrination theory and more.
Where the new ending DLC is concerned, they promise they are “going to put in the time and the effort that it takes, not going to rush it.” And that the extended Mass Effect 3 ending will be “more than just a few cinematic scenes; definitely a considerable amount.”
Fans were also encouraged to continue providing feedback, because “whether it’s support, love, anger, rage or whatever it is, we get it from you fans because you care about the game.” Truly, it sounds as if the extended Mass Effect 3 ending hasn’t entered more than preliminary planning yet and they are still collecting fan feedback to determine what will make the largest number of people happy without rewriting the entire ending.
And for all the Mass Effect 3 Indoctrination Theory supporters? There was a very, very short shout-out to you!
“The Indoctrination Theory illustrates again how committed the fan base is.” Beyond that, they didn’t want to comment either way. “We don’t want to be prescriptive for how people interpret the ending. …We want the content to speak for itself, and we’ll let it do so.”
Of course, that doesn’t take into account that the Indoctrination Theory means the game is incomplete. Giving a statement on whether that was the intent of the ending or not would have been a mercy killing for those clinging to it in the hopes that ‘Bioware just couldn’t produce something that horrible without a plan’.
And that also leaves a big question mark on what types of cut scenes this extended cut ending will have if the Indoctrination Theory is still going to be viable once it’s over. Is there really closure to the game if there’s still a question on whether your character has become an indoctrinated monster?
The final 10 minutes of the panel, which was opened up to audience questions, left many reading from home baffled as not a single question was asked about the Normandy fleeing the fight on Earth, how the squadmates ended up back on the Normandy, why the star child was inserted in the last few minutes of gameplay and couldn’t have its logic questioned, etc.
Remember, these questions were first come, first serve for whoever got to the microphone first; fastest doesn’t mean best questions. Sadly, weak questions too up far too much time. The only three questions worthy of real note were (please note these are not exact quotes unless there are quotes around it, recording materials were not allowed inside the panel):
Q: When the Citadel was moved, what happened to everyone on it?
A: There’s no reason to assume everyone inside the Citadel died. The Citadel codex states that any place inside the Citadel has emergency seals that can keep atmosphere in. Even if the Citadel is destroyed, “it’s not like the entire thing blows up.” People in the undamaged portions may still be alive in sealed atmospheres.
Q: “In the entire context of the ending, as an art form, should the integrity come from its capacity to withstand all forms of criticism, not just constructive?”
A: “Whenever you create a piece of art, you’re never going to have everyone extremely happy. …We’re looking for ways to improve. We’d like ways to make things better. If you didn’t like the ending, it’s entirely okay you didn’t like the ending.”
Q: Will the new Mass Effect 3 ending DLC be gameplay or just more cut scenes?
A: Bioware is currently only planning on extended cinematics, but cannot currently comment fully on the matter. “Keep giving us your feedback,” fans are reminded.
Mike Gamble closed the panel with a warm, “Without you, we are nothing. We are artists without an audience.”